Grand Forks sites

For general discussion with your fellow Minuteman III crewdogs, maintainers and cops. Currently based at Minot AFB, ND, Malmstrom AFB, MT, and F. E. Warren AFB, WY. Formerly based at Grand Forks AFB, ND. Operational from 17 Apr 1970 to present. Share your stories and meet up with an old friend.

Re: Grand Forks sites

Postby hockey85 on Thu Oct 02, 2008 11:57 pm

Golf-0 circa 1980s
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Re: Grand Forks sites

Postby hockey85 on Thu Oct 02, 2008 11:58 pm

Wing VI LF soon after construction
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Re: Grand Forks sites

Postby jhnbollinger on Fri Oct 03, 2008 12:13 am

Cory, Thanks for the memories, Grand forks was my first assignment. Cutting my teeth in the wing as an Construction equipment operator. I know i went to every site at least one time if not more. would like to go back to snoop around when time and money permit.
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Re: Grand Forks sites

Postby D Preidis on Fri Oct 03, 2008 6:38 pm

Thanks for the memories!

I spent most of my Minuteman alerts at C-0 from 1985 to 1989.

Some fond and scary memories.
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Re: Grand Forks sites

Postby ornurse362 on Fri Oct 03, 2008 10:56 pm

A real nice overhead shot of an LF.

I can recall some hairy times, at o-dark-thirty in the morning, when I escorted some of my CE folks to a site to pull the mushroom cap from the LEB air intake shaft and lower a sump pump assembly to pump out the water that was blocking the intake.

ANd, on most LFs, the area behind the launch closure had a 10' or so snow pole. Occasionally, I was 'lucky?' enough to wrangle a helicopter flight over multiple LFs. The snow pole had alternating bands of white and red, and the object was count how many bands were showing to figure how much snow was actually behind the launch closure. That became an item of interest as the spring thaw approached.


hockey85 wrote:Wing VI LF soon after construction
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Re: Grand Forks sites

Postby jhnbollinger on Tue Oct 07, 2008 11:03 pm

ornurse362 wrote:I can recall some hairy times, at o-dark-thirty in the morning, when I escorted some of my CE folks to a site to pull the mushroom cap from the LEB air intake shaft and lower a sump pump assembly to pump out the water that was blocking the intake.

ANd, on most LFs, the area behind the launch closure had a 10' or so snow pole. Occasionally, I was 'lucky?' enough to wrangle a helicopter flight over multiple LFs. The snow pole had alternating bands of white and red, and the object was count how many bands were showing to figure how much snow was actually behind the launch closure. That became an item of interest as the spring thaw approached.
I remember pulling some caps in the early 80s with a A-16 Crane at O-dark thirty. Also had my job shut down because i was not wearing a hard hat operating the damn thing. Go figure. I dont remember the snow poles. we always checked the sites on our night crew for the status report. And those targeting monuments were finally removed by us to make our heavy maintenance easier.
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Re: Grand Forks sites

Postby ornurse362 on Wed Oct 08, 2008 12:31 am

I came from the 321 FMMS FMT Section to be the 321 CES Missile Quality Control Officer from 1982-1983; believe it or not, I had asked for the transfer as RP and RPIE has always fascinated me. So, it is very likely we ran across each other in that time frame; the name "Bollinger" sounds vaguely familiar. And, if you or anyone you knew were on PRP, it was likely my doing.

As SAC KILLER might attest, it is likely I who had closed down an operation or two because of lack of hard-hats or other safety equipment.

As BCE MQC, one of my taskings, along with brine line modication/reroutings of course, was keeping the water level low enough in several LF air intake shafts until we could get a contract to weld metal sleeves into place. The metal sleeves didn't solve all the problems at all the LFs but did cure many problem sites. Of course, when you build underground structures in areas with a high water table and pressure, sooner or later ya' gotta expect an occasional - or more - water leak, ESA conduit leak, or liner bubble.


jhnbollinger wrote:
ornurse362 wrote:I can recall some hairy times, at o-dark-thirty in the morning, when I escorted some of my CE folks to a site to pull the mushroom cap from the LEB air intake shaft and lower a sump pump assembly to pump out the water that was blocking the intake.

ANd, on most LFs, the area behind the launch closure had a 10' or so snow pole. Occasionally, I was 'lucky?' enough to wrangle a helicopter flight over multiple LFs. The snow pole had alternating bands of white and red, and the object was count how many bands were showing to figure how much snow was actually behind the launch closure. That became an item of interest as the spring thaw approached.
I remember pulling some caps in the early 80s with a A-16 Crane at O-dark thirty. Also had my job shut down because i was not wearing a hard hat operating the damn thing. Go figure. I dont remember the snow poles. we always checked the sites on our night crew for the status report. And those targeting monuments were finally removed by us to make our heavy maintenance easier.[/quote]
Last edited by ornurse362 on Wed Oct 08, 2008 9:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Grand Forks sites

Postby SAC Killer on Wed Oct 08, 2008 12:21 pm

Yup. ornurse362 did transfer from maintenance BCE. Enforcing safety rules on the LFs was common. Most teams did the job right; but not all. And it wasn't just on site; I remember once telling the cops to deadline a camper vehicle because it was about to dispatch with a completely bald tire.

The Minuteman system is inherently safer than many other weapon systems. But you can't let your guard down. As soon as you do, there's an accident.
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Re: Grand Forks sites

Postby jhnbollinger on Wed Oct 08, 2008 10:12 pm

ornurse362. I remember a guy assisting us while we were recovering from the blizzard in march of 82. I worked CE pavement and grounds, missile section from june 80 to may 83. I was the tall dark headed airman. I always worked nights either in the wing operating equipment, or as snow controller. As far as PRP. the other BCE shops may have went on it. We only went downstairs to turn in classified for RON. We always tried to do our job right the first time and as safely as possible...Believe me accidents do suck....
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Re: Grand Forks sites

Postby gordymichels on Wed Aug 05, 2009 11:29 pm

Thanks for posting the pics!
I completely forgot about the Delta-0 Dodge city thing! 8)
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Re: Grand Forks sites

Postby wally on Mon Aug 17, 2009 1:27 am

gordymichels wrote:Thanks for posting the pics!
I completely forgot about the Delta-0 Dodge city thing! 8)


It was still Dodge City when I left the wing in 1994. Had the brown elevator shaftway with the gold-painted rocks glued to it.

Also: The guys in crew blues are Mike Ferris and (now) Lt Col Carl Struck. I think they were one of our OA crews in 1991.
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Re: Grand Forks sites

Postby J Davis on Mon Aug 17, 2009 3:57 am

hockey85 wrote:Wing VI LF soon after construction


This LF is G-16, which is just south of Inkster, between Inkster and Orr. The LF had already been "modified" by the extra layer of boron concrete/rebar as you can see the layer around the PAH, so the pic was taken a while after construction. I can tell it is G-16 by the west entrance and the trees on the south side, just outside the fence.


The last time I was at D-0 was in the fall of '99. We took the elevator down to check out the LCC and found that the lack of ECS and abundance of moisture had allowed spots of mold to grow on the walls and racks, and the MCC/DMCC chairs were coated in emerald green and gray mold. The gold nuggets were still firmly attached to the elevator shaft walls. I know it sounds kind of weird but seeing LCFs and LFs deteriorate and being dismantled was sad, considering all of the time and effort countless people put into maintaining them.

Driving through Bravo Flight past an LF (that had been turned over to contractors) and seeing the PAH open with no one around puts you into a "HOLY CRAP" feeling. It really drove home the end of mission at the "Forks.
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Re: Grand Forks sites

Postby Sport Fury on Sun Nov 29, 2009 10:11 pm

They all look just like the day I left, except the OZ antennas are gone (in some photos), I assume an upgrade was done after I got out of the AF. I just found out that all of this info was out here about Grand Forks and the other MM systems in general. I have been going through my life thinking all of this was still so secret. :shock: I was an SP in the 321 MSS from 1980 thru 86, SS-3, had some really good times at GFAFB, reading all of your posts makes me miss it, but mostly the folks that were there. It's a shame that they are gone now, it's like losing a good friend.

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Re: Grand Forks sites

Postby D Preidis on Fri Dec 18, 2009 9:17 pm

Sport Fury wrote:They all look just like the day I left, except the OZ antennas are gone (in some photos), I assume an upgrade was done after I got out of the AF. I just found out that all of this info was out here about Grand Forks and the other MM systems in general. I have been going through my life thinking all of this was still so secret. :shock: I was an SP in the 321 MSS from 1980 thru 86, SS-3, had some really good times at GFAFB, reading all of your posts makes me miss it, but mostly the folks that were there. It's a shame that they are gone now, it's like losing a good friend.

Joe Johnson
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1980-86

They modified the LF security systems. The old banjos were removed and a single antenna was installed that looked like a very large cigarette. The mod project was named IMPSS (Improved Minuteman Perimeter Security System (I think that is what it stood for)).
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Re: Grand Forks sites

Postby jbridges on Thu Jul 08, 2010 4:54 am

I wish to thank you for posting the photos of Grand Forks AFB missile sites and LCCs. I was stationed there from '79-'87. I have thought about my days as a young man living in such a flat and cold place. Not all was bad as I met my wife at Perkins and my daughter was born at United Hospital. Again thanks, it does bring a tear to my eyes.

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