Walkaround #506

Australian F-18A & B 

Reference photos by Alan Williamson on Aug 16 2003

R.A.A.F Twin seater FA-18 Hornet



Here's some pictures of a single seat FA-18A and that of a twin seater FA-18B of the R.A.A.F.

Some photos are of the F-18B.  Australia took the very first F-18 dual seater the B version in October 1985.

The F-18 was brought in to replace the ageing Mirage III, but before the R.A.A.F decided on the F-18 they look at obtaining the General DynamicF-16. In 1981 the decision was mad and an order for 75 hornets was placed, with that 57 of the 75 were single seat F/A-18A's and 18 were of the B version, put into use as trainers. ASTA was nominated as a prime Australian contractor responsible for components and that of final assembly and flight testing. The other contract was given to HDHV there response was that of assembly and testing of the Hornets GE F404 engines as well as some air frame parts. Other companies were also involved with that of aircraft advance radar and avionics. The first to F-18 the B versions made a record breaking non stop 6,830nm (12,640km) flight from California to Williamtown. The flight involved 13 flight refuelling a USAF KC-10 tanker which also had to take one refuelling en route. In 1990 the R.A.A.F F-18s were well under way to being upgraded to a standard to that very close to even more capable F/A-18C and D models.

The single seatF/A-18A that is in the photos is more or less a test aircraft not used for combat. That's all I can say about this aircraft.

Alan Williamson

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R.A.A.F Twin seater FA-18 Hornet

F-18 Dual seat Version B with dummy Sidewinder
Me with the F-18 Hornet
Mc Donnell Douglas F-18 Hornet


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Mc Donnell Douglas F-18 Hornet

Middle F-18 
R.A.A.F FA-18A Single Seat Fighter
Pilot boarding his FA-18A Hornet


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Ground crew folds lader in place on F-18

Checking Tail Hook

Photo 12
Taxing off


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Pilot & Bird F-18 Taxi off to the runway



Photos and text by Alan Williamson