Formerly assigned to the Florida Military Aviation Museum at Clearwater-St. Petersburg Airport, when the museum closed the aircraft were removed from the facility and placed in outside storage. Officially a part of the U.S. Air Force Museum, Wright Patterson AFB collection, the T-37 has just been placed on indefinite loan to MAPS Air Museum for restoration purposes.
The T-37 is a twin-engine primary trainer used for training USAF student pilots in jet aircraft operation. Known as the �Tweety Bird� or �Tweet,� it was the first USAF jet aircraft designed from conception as a trainer. Side-by-side seating in the T-37 made it easier for the instructor to observe and communicate with the student. From the relatively docile T-37, student pilots would transition to the larger, faster T-38 Talon.
The prototype first flew in October, 1954, and operational use of the T-37 started in 1957. In 1959 the T-37B, which featured uprated engines, an improved cockpit layout and better radio and navigation equipment, went operational with the Air Force. Eventually, all existing A models were also upgraded to B status.
The T-37C, with provisions for armament and extra fuel, was built for export. Both T-37Bs and Cs serve the air forces of several Allied nations. In all, nearly 1,300 T-37As, Bs and Cs were built before production ended in the late 1970s. In addition, nearly 600 A-37s � attack modifications of the T-37 � were built.
Span: 33 ft., 10 in.
Length: 29 ft. 4 in.
Height: 7 ft. 5 in.
Weight: 6,580 lbs. loaded
Engines: 2 X Continental J69-T-25s of 1,075 lbs thrust each
Serial Number: 57-2289
Maximum speed: 410 mph.
Cruising speed: 350 mph.
Range: 650 miles
Service Ceiling: 35,000 ft.