The Scrapyards - Aircraft Salvage Around Davis-Monthan AFB, Vol. 1980’s

Published on
November 13, 2023
Review Author(s)
Book Author(s)
Graham Robson
Other Publication Information
Hard Cover, 184 Pages, 11.7 x 8.25 in, color photos
Company: Tempest Books - Website: Visit Site
Provided by: Casemate Publishers - Website: Visit Site

New from Tempest Publishing is a great book covering the Davis Monthan AFB Scrap yards and this volume focuses on the 1980’s. the book starts with an introduction and Mr. Robson goes into his love of the fields and there is a great overall shot of the many planes stored and dismantled there.

One of the first things I learned was that there are multiple actual scrapping and recovery facilities. The book is actually broken down by these and follows a path around the yards. The chapters include the following:

  • Introduction
  • Southwestern Alloys
  • Kolar/Airmet
  • Dross Metals
  • Bob’s Air Park
  • Western International Aviation
  • Delcon/United Aeronautical Corporation
  • Allied Aircraft Sales
  • Desert Eagle Aviation/Minden Air
  • Desert Air Parts

The Introduction covers a rough tour of the base, a map of the area with where each facility is location along with beautiful pictures of the planes there. I do want to mention these are ALL magnificent pictures. Wonderful, full color and beautifully framed and focused.

Let’s take a look at a couple of the sections. The first 18-page section is Southwestern Alloys. This company was established in 1946. This company was the first to a guillotine big enough to cut an entire plane. They off-site smelt the metals to ingots as the planes are dismantled. Interspersed with a lot of really cool text are wonderful pictures of Convair 298, C-121J Super Constellations, C-118A’s and HUP-2 Retriever helicopters. There are more as well as overall shots of the area and as I had said, the pictures are top notch.

Delcon’s section is 15 pages of military aircraft. Delcon has been operating since the early 1970’s. It was originally a spare parts business but has since evolved into a full-scale aircraft handling operation doing everything from supplying and overhauling parts to offering storage. This section includes great shots of S-2 Trackers, F-8 Crusaders, A-37A’s, KA-6B Skywarriors and P-3 Neptune’s amongst others. The pictures have different markings and are in different states of disassembly.

The remainder of these sections are equally well done. This is a great book full of great information about each of the companies. It reminds me of a coffee table book in that the pictures are that well presented. Highly recommended.

Thanks to Tempest and Casemate for the opportunity to review this book.


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