World War II
P-39 Airacobra: 1942-1943
P-400 Airacobra (1): 1942-1943
P-38D-H, & J Lightning (2): 1943-1945
Between The Wars (BTW):
P-5lD Mustang (3): 1947-1950
F-80C Shooting Star (4): 1950-1953
F-86F Sabre (5): 1953-1957
F-84G (6) Thunderjet “Hog”: 1954-1956
F-100D/F Super Sabre: 1956-1963
F-105 Thunderchief “Thud”: 1963-1968
F-4C Wild Weasel Phantom II: 1968-1971
F-4D Phantom II: 1971-1981
F-16A, B, C,& D Fighting Falcon: 1981-Present
Note 1: The P-400 was an export version of the P-39, originally built for the British. Among other differences, the P-400 had a less-powerful engine and a 20 millimeter cannon instead of the 37 millimeter cannon used in the P-39. Surprisingly, the P-400, although slower than the P-39, was actually preferred by pilots because its cannon was more reliable. As World War II began, the 35th Pursuit Group was equipped exclusively with P-400s and the 8th Pursuit Group was equipped exclusively with P-39s. However, as the war progressed, the two types became intermixed so each group ended up with both P-400s and P-39s.
Note 2: There were two major types of P-38 that we flew, the P-38D-H models, and the later improved “Bearded” (because of the larger under-engine radiators) P-38J model which was up-engined and equipped with hydraulic actuators for the control surfaces which increased its speed and maneuverability.
Note 3: After 1948, the Air Force changed the designation from “P” for pursuit to “F” for fighter, so after 1948 the P-51 Mustang was designated as the F-51.
Note 4: The 80th’s sister squadrons, the 35th and 36th converted back to the F-51 Mustang when parts began to become scarce for the new F-80s. The 80th continued to fly the F-80 in the ground support role using the F-80’s superior speed and carrying capacity.
Note 5: Even though the F-86Fs that the entire 8th Fighter Bomber Wing was re-equipped with were superior in every way to the Mig-15, the wing continued its ground support role.
Note 6: The F-84F was the swept-wing version of the F-84. It was more or less mechanically identical to the F-84G, except the F model had 30 degree swept wings and therefore dramatically increased top-end speed and maneuverability.