1948 Lockheed TV-2 / T-33 Shooting Star (57-6558)
The Lockheed T-33 Shooting Star is an American-built jet trainer aircraft, designed from the P-80. Design work for the Lockheed P-80 began in 1943 with the first flight on 8 January 1944. Following on the Bell P-59, the P-80 became the first jet fighter to enter full squadron service in the United States Army Air Forces. As more advanced jets entered service, the F-80 took on another role – training jet pilots. The two-place T-33 was developed from the Lockheed P-80/F-80 by lengthening the fuselage by slightly over three feet and adding a second seat, instrumentation and flight controls. It made its first flight in 1948, piloted by Tony LeVier. It was used by the U.S. Navy initially as TO-2 then TV-2, and after 1962, T-33B.
The US Navy used the T-33 as a land-based trainer starting in 1949. It was designated the TV-2, but was re-designated the T-33B in 1962. The Navy operated some ex-USAF P-80Cs as the TO-1, changed to the TV-1 about a year later. A carrier-capable version of the P-80/T-33 family was subsequently developed by Lockheed, eventually leading to the late 1950s to 1970s T2V-1/T-1A SeaStar. There were a total of 6,557 Shooting Stars produced, 5,691 by Lockheed. Despite its vintage, the venerable T-33 still remains in service worldwide.
Our 1957 T-33B Shooting Star 57-6558 is on perpetual loan from the GSA / Connecticut DAS. Preliminary restoration has commenced on the landing gear bay, landing gear, engine mounts, and other subassemblies. It is the goal to eventually prepare the Jet fighter for outside display in front of the Curtiss Hangar.