California Air National Guard, Latest Hobbymaster updates and Flying Tigers Winter Sale !

A Convair F-106 of the California Air National Guard

The California Air National Guard (CA ANG) is the air force militia of the U.S. State of California. It is, along with the California Army National Guard, an element of the California National Guard.

As state militia units, the units in the California Air National Guard are not in the normal United States Air Force chain of command. They are under the jurisdiction of the Governor of California through the office of the California Adjutant General unless they are federalized by order of the President of the United States. The California Air National Guard is headquartered in Sacramento, and its commander is currently Major General Jon K. Kelk.

A California Air National Guard F-86 assigned to the 196th Fghter Interceptor Squadron on the ramp at Ontario ANG Training Site

Under the “Total Force” concept, California Air National Guard units are considered to be Air Reserve Components (ARC) of the United States Air Force (USAF). California ANG units are trained and equipped by the Air Force and are operationally gained by a Major Command of the USAF if federalized. In addition, the California Air National Guard forces are assigned to Air Expeditionary Forces and are subject to deployment tasking orders along with their active duty and Air Force Reserve counterparts in their assigned cycle deployment window.

Along with their federal reserve obligations, the California ANG is subject to activation by order of the Governor to provide protection of life and property, and preserve peace, order and public safety. State missions include disaster relief in times of earthquakes, hurricanes, floods and forest fires, search and rescue, protection of vital public services, and support to civil defence.

In addition, the California State Military Reserve (CSMR) is an all-volunteer militia force under the California Military Department that provides reserve personnel to both the California Army National Guard and the California Air National Guard. It is under state jurisdiction and its members are employed only within the State of California. It is not subject to be called, ordered or assigned as any element of the federal armed forces. Its mission is to provide units organized, equipped and trained in the protection of life or property and the preservation of peace, order and public safety under competent orders of State authorities.

Preparing for a target towing mission at Camp Merriam, now Camp San Luis Obispo, in 1933. Captain Miller of the 115th Observation Squadron boards an O-38 as mechanics adjust the towing mechanism.

The California Air National Guard origins date to 28th August 1917 with the establishment of the 115th Aero Squadron as part of the World War I United States Army Air Service. The 115th served in France on the Western Front, constructed facilities and engaged in supply and related base support activities then after the 1918 Armistice with Germany was demobilized in 1919.

The Militia Act of 1903 established the present National Guard system, units raised by the states but paid for by the Federal Government, liable for immediate state service. If federalized by Presidential order, they fall under the regular military chain of command. On 1st June 1920, the Militia Bureau issued Circular No.1 on organization of National Guard air units.

The 115th Observation Squadron was established by the Militia Bureau on 5th April 1924, which authorized the immediate organization of the 115th Observation Squadron, 40th Division of Aviation, California National Guard. Initially the Unit held its meetings at Clover Field, Santa Monica, using Reserve Equipment planes for flying. Later on, the Squadron met at the National Guard Armory and also at the University of Southern California. In 1925, several months after its organization, the Squadron moved to permanent quarters at Griffith Park Aerodrome in Los Angeles. The 115th Observation Squadron was ordered into active United States Army Air Corps service on 3rd March 1941 as part of the buildup of the Army Air Corps prior to the United States entry into World War II.

F-51D Utah / California / Nevada Air National Guard

On 24th May 1946, the United States Army Air Forces, in response to dramatic postwar military budget cuts, imposed by President Harry S. Truman, allocated inactive unit designations to the National Guard Bureau for the formation of an Air Force National Guard. These unit designations were allotted and transferred to various State National Guard bureaus to provide them unit designations to re-establish them as Air National Guard units.

The modern California ANG received federal recognition on 1st July 1946 as the 62d Fighter Wing at Van Nuys Airport, Van Nuys. Its 115th Bombardment Squadron was equipped with A-26 Invader light bombers. On 16th September 1946, its 146th Fighter Group was also formed at Van Nuys, with several fighter squadrons equipped with F-51 Mustangs and its mission was the air defence of the state. 18th September 1947, however, is considered the California Air National Guard’s official birth concurrent with the establishment of the United States Air Force as a separate branch of the United States military under the National Security Act.

On 4th April 1948 the 61st Fighter Wing with its 144th Fighter Group was formed at Hayward Municipal Airport, Hayward. The 61st’s mission was the air defence of Northern California, the 62nd, Southern California.

California Air National Guard 115th Fighter-Bomber Squadron – North American F86A-5-NA Sabre

Today, units of the CA ANG perform a homeland defence mission; worldwide airlift missions, aerial firefighting, combat search and rescue, and unmanned aerial (UAV) reconnaissance missions. Also the 162nd CCG, maintains tactical communications-electronic facilities, and provides tactical command and control communications services for operational commands supporting US military wartime contingencies.

After the 11th September 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States, elements of every Air National Guard unit in California has been activated in support of the Global War on Terrorism. Flight crews, aircraft maintenance personnel, communications technicians, air controllers and air security personnel were engaged in Operation Noble Eagle air defence overflights of major United States cities. In December 2007, after the grounding of F-15 fighters due to potential structural problems, the California Air National Guard assumed responsibility for defence of the western United States. This was the first time that a single state’s fighter wing took responsibility of defence for an entire coast.

Also, California ANG units have been deployed overseas as part of Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan and Operation Iraqi Freedom in Iraq as well as other locations as directed.

The last 144th Fighter Wing F-16C Fighting Falcon, piloted by U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Sean Navin, 194th Fighter Squadron commander, takes off from the Fresno Yosemite International Airport Nov. 7, 2013. The 144FW is in the final stages of converting from the F-16 to the F-15 Eagle. The F-16 will depart Fresno and head to the 162nd Fighter Wing in Tucson, Ariz. (Air National Guard photo by Tech. Sgt. Charles Vaughn)

The California Air National Guard consists of the following major units:-

129th Rescue Wing

Established 3rd April 1955; operates: MC-130P Combat Shadow; HH-60G Pave Hawk
Stationed at: Moffett Air National Guard Base, Mountain View
Gained by: Air Force Special Operations Command
The members of the 129th have performed rescues under a variety of conditions – from rough Pacific seas to the rugged Sierra Nevada, using its combination of HC-130 tankers and HH-60 helicopters. Many high-risk lifesaving missions involved long-range, over-water flights, air refueling of helicopters by the HC-130 aircraft, and skilled maneuvering by ships and helicopters to recover patients from the decks of these vessels.

California Air National Guard F-15C Eagle from the 144th Fighter Wing operating out of Fresno Air National Guard Base

144th Fighter Wing

Established 2nd June 1948; operates: F-15 Eagle
Stationed at: Fresno Air National Guard Base, Fresno with additional Alert Detachment at March Air Reserve Base, Riverside
Gained by: Air Combat Command
Provides air defence protection for California from the Mexican border to Oregon utilizing the F-15 Eagle.


115th Airlift Squadron C-130J Hercules flying over Santa Cruz Island. The 115th AS is the oldest unit in the California Air National Guard, having over 80 years of service to the state and nation.

146th Airlift Wing

Established 16th June 1924 (as: 115th Observation Squadron); operates: C-130J Hercules (MAFFS)
Stationed at: Channel Islands Air National Guard Station, Oxnard
Gained by: Air Mobility Command
The oldest unit of the CA ANG, the 146th AW proivides global military airlift capability to a full spectrum of state and federal agencies.

194th Fighter-Interceptor Squadron – Convair F-106A

163rd Attack Wing

Established 9th November 1946 (as: 196th Fighter Squadron); operates: MQ-1 Predator
Stationed at: March Joint Air Reserve Base, Riverside
Gained by: Air Combat Command/Air Education and Training Command
Has 902 members of which roughly 220 are full-time. Currently in transition from a KC-135 Stratotanker air refueling mission to an MQ-1 Predator ISR wing, executing global unmanned aerial systems, combat support, and humanitarian missions.

McDonnell F-4C-20-MC Phantom II 63-7644 196th Tactical Fighter Squadron 193rd Tactical Fighter Group California ANG 1987

195th Wing

Established 13th May 1948; non-flying unit
Stationed at: Beale Air Force Base, Marysville
Gained by: Air Combat Command
Responsible for non-flying missions including electronic intelligence, communications, network warfare, space control, and administrative programs.

An F-15 Eagle from the 144th Fighter Wing, Fresno, Calif. launches in pursuit of a drone at the Weapons System Evaluation Process (WSEP) at Tyndall Air Force Base, Florida. WSEP provides a combat like environment for pilots and crews to test their abilities. (US Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. David J. Loeffler/144th Fighter Wing Public Affairs)


HA3610 Hobbymaster 1/72nd scale Convair F-106A Delta Dart 80784, 194th FIS, California ANG William Tell, 1980

This weeks special offer is a California Air National Guard Convair F-106A Delta Dart at a Special Low Price for the Winter Sale ! Only a few on offer at this sale price so please be quick to avoid disappointment.

HA3610 Hobbymaster 1/72nd scale Convair F-106A Delta Dart 80784, 194th FIS, California ANG William Tell, 1980  RRP £84.00  Flying Tigers only £59.99 !


Hobbymaster Photo Updates

I have added the very latest photo updates on the following models. Please click on the photos below to go straight to the model pages to take a closer look.


Flying Tigers Winter Sale !

Please check out the Flying Tigers Winter Sale and all the special offers. Some great bargains here, but there are limited stocks on some of these models so be quick ! More models will be added over the holiday period.

Please click on the image below to go straight to the Winter Sale !


Flying Tigers will be dispatching models from 2nd January 2018 and throughout the week.

Sale Offer ends 12.00 p.m.noon GMT, Tuesday 9th of January 2018.
Limited stock availability on many models. Order early to avoid disappointment.

That is all for this week and this year. Here’s wishing you all a Happy and Presperous New Year !

Thank you all for your support during the Year.

Flying Tigers.