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F-14A VF-84 1

By Claveworks
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The Grumman F-14 Tomcat was a supersonic swing-wing fighter which entered service with the US Navy in 1974, and the Iranian Air Force in 1977.

There were three major versions of the Tomcat: F-14A, F-14B, and F-14D with improved engines and additional capabilities on each version. The Tomcat saw combat with the USN and IRIAF and was successful in every case.

The F-14 was armed with 1 x 20mm Vulcan cannon and up to 8 missiles (F-14D) including AIM-7 Sparrow, AIM-9 Sidewinder, and AIM-54 Phoenix.

This example is an F-14A of VF-84 US Navy circa 1976.
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© 2010 - 2020 Claveworks
anonymous's avatar
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FelixNutsTomcat's avatar
FelixNutsTomcatHobbyist Writer
VF-84 Jolly Rogers is one of my favorite liveries on her.  When VF-84 was disestablished in 1995 the VF-103 Sluggers took up the name and insignia and became the VF-103 Jolly Rogers.  They flew the F-14B Tomcat until the F-14 was retired and replaced by the F/A-18 SuperHornet.
Midway2009's avatar
Midway2009Hobbyist Traditional Artist
'Jolly Rogers' are one of my favorite Fighter Squadrons. :love:
talespin38's avatar
talespin38Professional Photographer
I miss the Tomcat!
someone1fy's avatar
If possible may you make a Luftwaffe version of F-14?
diversdream's avatar
did you know that more then one sqd has been known as the jolly rogers or flown with their distinctive markings in the USN?
that's not including the veritechs of robotec either or the tie fighters of the 501 stormtrooper legion of star wars.. hehe
(see below for more)


taken from here

F I G H T I N G 1 7

1 Jan 1943
Fighting Seventeen
the original squadron to bear the Jolly Rogers name
formed by Lt Comd John Thomas Blackburn USN at NAS Norfolk in Virginia
One of the first squadrons to receive the F4U Corsair, VF-17 decided on the name and skull-&-crossbones fin-flash, based upon the Corsair name, a break with the trend of cartoon -inspired characters popular among other squadrons

Oct 1943
Originally carrier-based aboard the USS Bunker Hill (CV-17), VF-17 are redesignated as a land-based Naval squadron and are based in the Pacific theatre at Ondonga, New Georgia (WNW of Guadalcanal).
Concerns about the ability of the F4U Corsairs to operate safely from carriers was responsible for this transition.

Fighting 18, equiped with Hellcats take their place on the carrier deck.

8 Nov 1943
Squadron XO Roger Hedrick leads a flight which intercepts a flight of 15 Vals and 24 Zekes over Empress Augusta Bay, Bougainville.
As the Vals fled back to their base, VF-17 were responsible for downing 3 fighters and damaging 4 others.
Though outnumbered, the squadron survived the encounter with no losses

Jan 1944
VF-17 moved to Piva Yoke on Bougainville in order to be closer to the action on Rabaul.

10 Apr 1944
VF-17 stood down

squadron commander Tom Blackburn is re-assigned
squadron executive officer Roger Hedrick and other members of the squadron go onto form VF-84

VF-17 begins second tour with a new commander and new members while retaining the "Jolly Rogers" name and a few original VF-17 personnel.
They are deployed aboard the USS Hornet (CV-12) equiped with F6F Hellcats

Oct 1946
VF-17 redesignated VF-5B while retaining the "Jolly Rogers" name
VF-5B was redesignated VF-61 after 18 months (28 April 1948)

Fighting 84

During 1944, there were actually two "Jolly Rogers" squadrons in the US Navy.
While VF-17 remained as the official "Jolly Rogers," another squadron with the same name entered the Pacific theatre as well.
Created by former VF-17 members who were transferred to this new squadron after their first tour, Fighting 84 was officially named "The Wolf Gang."

However, because so many members of Fighting 84 were ex-Fighting 17 members, the group came to see themselves as the true "Jolly Rogers."
Indeed, there was an official attempt made to secure the "Jolly Rogers" name, given that the original VF-17 had been disbanded at that time.
However, the Navy had re-commissioned VF-17 shortly before Hedrick's attempt, and so the request was denied.

Ironically, ten years after Fighting 84's disbanding in 1945, another Fighting 84 would be formed which would adopt the official "Jolly Rogers" name 4 years after their formation.
This squadron would go on to adorn their aircraft with the skull-&-crossbones for nearly forty years.

Fighting 84 created by former VF-17 Exec Officer Roger Hedrick.
Though they desired to adopt the name and the skull/ crossbones of VF-17, Fighting 84 was unable to because
VF-17 still existed, now aboard the USS Hornet (CV-12).
Officially this squadron was known as "The Wolf Gang" and their aircraft was adorned with a black wolf with machine guns.
Given that some of the squadron was made up of former
VF-17 members, Fighting 84 still saw themselves as the
"Jolly Rogers" to some degree and this went a long way in shaping their history and traditions.

1 Apr 1945
Squadron pilot Ensign Jack Ernie lost in action over Okinawa during the invasion, his last transmission, "remember me with The Jolly Rogers"
Later, the squadron is presented with a glass-encased skull-&-crossbones by the family of Ensign Jack Ernie which squadron legend maintains are the actual remains of Ens Jack Ernie.
The foundation of the "Passing of the Bones" ceremony to the new CAG during the Change-of-Command Ceremony comes from this.

8 Oct 1945
Fighting 84 disbanded

F I G H T I N G 6 1

28 Apr 1948

VF-5B (formerly designated as VF-17) after a period of 18 months, is re-commissioned as VF-61
VF-61 first equiped with McDonell FH-1 Phantoms, eventually transitioning to the F-2H Banshee, and later, to the F3H-2M Demon

19 Apr 1959
VF-61 disbanded
Cdr Hoppe assumed command of VF-84 several days after the disbanding takes place.

F I G H T I N G 8 4

1 July 1955
VF-84 commissioned at NAS Oceana under the name "Vagabonds"
The "Jolly Rogers" name was held by VF-61 at that time

Jan-Jul 1957
VF-84 Vagabonds' first major deployment
Squadron based aboard the new USS Forrestal (CVA-59)
Squadron using the FJ-3 Fury

May 1959
Comdr Hoppe, former commanding officer of VF-61 became the commanding officer of VF-84
Formal request submitted to CNO to transfer the "Jolly Rogers" name and fin-flash over to VF-84
VF-84 reassignment to CVG-7
Squadron equiped with the F8U-2M Crusader

1 April 1960
VF-84 formally became "The Jolly Rogers" and aquired the skull-&-crossbones fin-flash following the approval of the CNO (as well as a vote by VF-84s personnel)
In the interim before the granting of the request, all of the VF-84 Crusaders had been painted in the "Jolly Rogers" motif
VF-84 retained the black band with yellow edging and V's of the old squadron, a symbolic merging of the two designs which has continued to the present day

Aug 1960
First deployment with the F-8 aboard the USS Independence (CVA-62)

VF-84 was equiped with the F-8C, making two tours in the Mediterranean

Squadron equiped with the F-4B Phantom
Temporary move to Key West, Florida for that summer

May - Dec
7 month deployment aboard USS Independence from "Yankee Station" in Gulf of Tonkin (Vietnam)
1507 combat sorties
2200 flight hours logged during missions in both North and South Vietnam

June1966 - Jan 1967
7 month deployment in the Mediterranean

Transition to the F-4J
15 month training cycle
Receipt of the Chief of Naval Operations Safety Award

Apr 1968 - Jan 1969
9 month deployment to the Mediterranean aboard USS Independence

VF-84 reassigned to Carrier Air Wing 6 (CVW-6)

Transition to the USS F.D. Roosevelt (CVA-42)
4 tours with the 6th Fleet
Revertion to the F-4B (1973)
Transition to the F-4N (1974)

June 1976 - Apr 1977
Training on the F-14A Tomcat

Apr 1977
Reassignment to Carrier Air Wing 8 (CVW-8)

Dec 1977
Formal transition to the F-14A and the USS Nimitz (CVN-68)

Dec - 1978
First cruise with the USS Nimitz
Recorded a notable 752.9 flight hours over a 23 day period

Second cruise with USS Nimitz
Filming for the 1980 movie "The Final Countdown," featuring a memorable scene involving two VF-84 Tomcats engaged in a dogfight against two Japanese Zeros, propelling "The Jolly Rogers" into international celebrity status

Jan 1980
USS Nimitz diverted from Mediterranean to "Gonzo Station" in the Arabian Sea in response to Iranian hostage crisis

Apr 1980
USS Nimitz used as launch platform for failed hostage rescue attempt resulting in the loss of 2 RH-53D Sea Stallions

5 May 1980
Lt Jack Watson USN, pilot and Ens John Graham USN, NFO die in a crash during the last day of flight operations for the squadron.

Aug 1981- Feb 1982
Deployment to the Mediterranean
VF-84 first squadron of either fleet to deploy the Tactical Air Reconnaissance Pod System (TARPS) operationally, pioneering the use of F-14s as photo reconnaissance aircraft, a role formally performed by dedicated RF-8 Crusaders and RA-5 Vigilanties

19 Aug 1981
Sister squadron VF-41 (Black Aces) shoot down two Libyan Su-22s over the Gulf of Sidra

Nov 1982 - May 1983
Deployment to the Mediterranean
Support of US Marines in Lebanon involving mostly reconnaissance
Performed in NATO exercises such as "National Week"
Operations off the coast of Libya with no incidents

Mediterranean cruise
while on that cruise, the battle-group went onto a high state of alert when terrorists seized a TWA 727 at Athens in June of that year

15 Aug - 16 Nov 1986
NorLant cruise
Air combat exercises with a number of friendly airforces serving as opponents

30 Dec 1986 - 26 Jul 1987
Round-the-world cruise

VF-84 awarded the coveted Battle "E" by the CNO for squadron efficiency
Yellow "E" applied to the lower, forward corner of each black tail-fin of squadron planes

Transition to the new USS T. Roosevelt (CVN-71) as part of CVW-8

30 Dec 1988 - 30 Jun 1989
Mediterranean cruise
VF-84 awarded its second consecutive Battle "E" by the CNO

VF-84 aircraft first to make an arrested landing on the new USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72)

USS T. Roosevelt called to make preparations to join USS Ranger and USS Midway in the Persian Gulf in reaction to the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait.
VF-84 prepared for combat opperations during the fall and winter

28 Dec 1990
USS T. Roosevelt deployed along with USS America

16 Jan 1991
USS T. Roosevelt and USS America arrive in the Red Sea
Both carriers informed that Desert Storm would commence that night
USS T. Roosevelt ordered to cruise to Persian Gulf to join USS Ranger and USS Midway
Upon reaching Persain Gulf, VF-84 flew CAP in Eastern Iraq during the air offensive and Central Iraq during the ground offensive
Other duties involved fleet defense, air-wing escort during strike missions, TARPS missions to assess bomb damage
468 combat sorties recorded
After ceasefire, USS T. Roosevelt moved to Eastern Mediterranean.
VF-84 flew missions into Iraq from the western side as part of Operation Provide Comfort
Missions involved difficult infrared TARPS missions at low altitude over northern Iraq at night
111 sorties recorded

14 June 1991
USS T. Roosevelt relieved by USS Forrestal and returned to Norfolk 28 June 1991

11 Mar - 8 Sep 1993
Mediterrean cruise as sole F-14 squadron aboard USS T. Roosevelt
support of Special Marine air-to-ground task force

29 Sep 1995
VF-84 Disbanded as budget cuts for the Navy to adopt a policy of only one F-14 squadron per carrier
VF-103 (The Sluggers) requests permission to adopt the "Jolly Rogers" name and fin-flash

F I G H T I N G 1 0 3

March - April 1995
VF-103 becomes first squadron to engage in home trials with the Navy's newly acquired LANTIRN pods for the F-14 Tomcat
VF-103 Squadron Commander Hnarakis and Lt. Commander Slade flew 40 sorties to demonstrate the effectiveness of newly equipped LANTIRN pods on Tomcats specially modified to incorporate this new technology

Oct 1995
VF-103 formally becomes "The Jolly Rogers"
As a result, "The Jolly Rogers" become part of CVW-17 aboard the USS Enterprise (CVN-65)

26 April - 17 May 1996
VF-103 embarks aboard USS Enterprise on short joint-fleet exercise with the British Royal Navy
using their LANTIRN pods to designate targets for LGB-equipped Sea Harriers from the carrier HMS Illustrious

28 June 1996
VF-103 begins Mediterranean cruise aboard USS Enterprise
cruise marks first operational deployment of LANTIRN for the Navy, with 9 of the 14 Tomcats equiped for the pods while the Enterprise carries 6 LANTIRN units

19 July 1996
A VF-103 aircraft assists USS Enterprise in recording her 300 000th arrested landing

30 Aug 1996
Deployed aboard USS Enterprise in the eastern Mediterranean, VF-103 goes on hightened alert in response to Iraqi armour movements near the northern Kurdish territories

12 Sept 1996
VF-103 steams for the Persian Gulf from station in Bosnia aboard USS Enterprise
This is in reaction to a stepped-up military presence against Iraq following a US joint-service attack

May 1997
Transition to the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN-69)

11 June 1998
VF-103 along with USS Eisenhower ordered to sail to the former Yugoslavia for possible air strikes in order to protect the province of Kosovo.

30 July 1998
VF-103 pilot Lt Comdr Ronald Lee "Rhino" Wise Jr dies in a collision between two of the squadron's F-14s during a routine flight over the eastern Mediterranean.
Lt. Richard Kane, the RIO of that aircraft suffered a broken leg.
The other aircraft returned safely to the carrier.

11 Nov 1998
VF-103 ordered to move from Mediterranean to the Persian Gulf in response to Iraqi posturing

23 May 1999
Three planes from VF-103 overfly the Indianapolis 500 during the performance of the U.S National Anthem.
This marked the first public appearance of VF-103's low-visibility paint-scheme.
While the CAG bird flew with the more familiar black tails with white skulls, its two escorts were dressed in colours similar to VF-84's low-vis days.

Apr 2000
The Jet Observer Online features VF-103 in an article titled VF-103 Jolly Rogers' Bones are for Real.
The article focuses on the origin of the glass-encased bones of Ens. Jack Earnie.
ShowOff77's avatar
Beautiful plane and badass paintjob.
ForsakenOutlaw's avatar
ForsakenOutlawHobbyist General Artist
I would love to use this as my wallpaper at work but that's 1600x1200 resolution, any chance you'll release a few wallpapers from your works? Thanks.
Claveworks's avatar
I'll see what I can do...
ForsakenOutlaw's avatar
ForsakenOutlawHobbyist General Artist
Wow cool.
Ball-of-Fire's avatar
Ball-of-Fire Digital Artist
My favorite Tomcat Squad! I saw them at the first airshow I attended even their "mascot" the actual skull and crossbones of their fallen brother from WWII were present. lovely work as always-thanks! :)
Claveworks's avatar
Thanks - I will be doing some more units soon... :)
Claveworks's avatar
Gun ports fixed.
ItsNvrEnuf's avatar
Oh yeah!! This is awesome!!!
danyboz's avatar
danybozHobbyist General Artist
Yeah... was waiting for this one ;)
bear48's avatar
the-red-baron's avatar
Fav'd for VF-84!
the-red-baron's avatar
and for F-14 win!
Kekszbelow's avatar
aaaah remember the old times as a kid when I had this F14 from micro machines with this paintjob. good job on the skin and bringing back good ol times, hehe :D
Yuxtapuestoelmono's avatar
THE LEGEND!!!!!!!!!
MasterOfPointillism's avatar
MasterOfPointillismProfessional Traditional Artist
Jolly Rogers Rule!!!!
anonymous's avatar
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