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Lockheed F-104 Starfighter (Crowood Aviation) Hardcover – 22 Dec 2000

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x931097f8) out of 5 stars 3 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x932e5bf0) out of 5 stars F-104 Widow Maker? 10 Oct. 2009
By matt8386 - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The Lockheed F-104 Starfighter remains a controversial fighter. Designed by Kelly Johnson, of Lockheed's Skunk Works, it was a "missile with a man in it". It was certainly a fast plane, with great acceleration. But not a dog fighter, nor could it carry a large load (4,000 lbs tops). The U.S. Air Force only had 296 built and phased them out quickly.

It was a "hot" fighter, demanding of its pilots. Lockheed would have gone bankrupt had not the Germans, then the rest of Europe's NATO members purchased this plane. So why did they? Politics? Great Salesmen at Lockheed?

This is a very detailed book about Lockheed, the history of the F-104 and tackles the issue of whether or not this plane should be called a "widow maker". Several sections are given to pilots who praised the fighter plane, and attribute the high accident rates to early maintenence problems, lack of pilot skill and poor weather in Europe. Once the bugs were worked out, they argue, the plane was as safe as any.

Martin Bowman writes a balanced account of this fighter, packed with clear B&W photos, 8 pages of color photos and some line drawings. I would like to have seen more of those to give it a full five starts.

So, was this a great jet? You be the judge. Just because a lot of nations used it, doesn't make it great - just available. The author gives his opinion, which I like and agree with. A very good book of a very misunderstood jet. Recommended.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x93568d2c) out of 5 stars STARFIGHTER 2 Nov. 2009
By Themistocles Varagkis - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Despite the fact that for many people F-104 is a controversial aircraft, I love it, so I wanted a comprehensive book about it.
I believe that this book met my expectations in a lot of respects.
The only drawback and in respect to its service in foreign airforces it does not have many information about certain users. For example the chapter concerning Greek Air Force (HAF) is very poor.
Overall i recomend this book
HASH(0x932e5e0c) out of 5 stars Five Stars 28 Oct. 2014
By Brian D. Ocallaghan - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Absolutely fantastic review of the F-104 with emphasis on foreign birds.
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