Cool! You found the data plate. I agree that the 1 is most likely the first production block of the
T-33A Shooting Star. The L could stand for Lockheed. The O may stand for the production facility
or just part of the abbreviation for Lockheed? Will have to do some research on the production years and
USAF serial numbers for the block 1. Will also check if some were transferred to the USN/USMC with
Bureau Numbers and if any were delivered to foreign nations. The Squadron/Signal T-33 in Action and
United States Navy Aircraft Since 1911 books would be a good start along with joebaugher.com website.
I have access to all three and do not mind referencing them. The 1962 era USAF seat style parachute assy.
would be sage green in color. The riser releases on the shoulders may have one or two T-shaped Capewell
fittings with squeeze releases; two Capewell fittings with flat covers and squeeze releases underneath; or two
Capewell fittings with flat covers and cable pull releases underneath? The late 1950s-early 1960s was a
transitional period for the riser fittings. Will have to reference Dan Poynter's book The Parachute Manual
Volume 1 for exact details concerning the parachute harness/container, riser fittings, and if there was an
automatic ripcord release/parachute opener installed in the assy. (non-automatic or automatic parachute assy.)
If there was an auto opener installed, it was probably the F-1B series with a Class #. The early arming knob for
the F-1B units was a transparent red-orange in color. Not sure when the flat sided orange painted metal arming
knobs with an internal cable reel for the lap belt key were introduced-sometime by or during the mid 1960s.
Also need to find the correct lap belt key-there were a few variations based on the type of lap belt used-if used
and the rest of the lanyard/spring(s)/snap hook (if used). The earlier red snap hooks had a peak on the curved
tip and the later ones did not. The later ones were either modified with tip ground off or were manufactured this
way. The snap hooks used before the red ones may just have been a store bought silver colored metal type with
a swivel as found on dog leashes! The seat cushion for the parachute assy. may have contained the H-2 or
MD-1 emergency oxygen bailout bottle assy. with a black rubber hose with end fitting and activation cable with
a green painted wooden ball known as the green apple on the end. The life raft with container would have been
optional and would have been installed between the seat cushion and parachute container. There was also a
back pad style life raft container assy. that may have been used as an option? The diameter of the parachute
itself was the 28ft C-9 series. The parachute hardware for the chest and leg straps consisted of three
adjustable metal V rings and three metal non-adjustable snap hooks (or three quick ejector snap hooks?)
Both styles of snap hooks were non-removable. The harness may also have had a CRU-8/P oxygen connector
with a MSA mfr. mounting plate installed to connect the aircraft oxygen hose to the pilots oxygen mask 3-pin
hose end connector and the bailout bottle hose end fitting OR the pilots oxygen mask may have had a MSA
mfr. MC-3A hose end connector to connect the aircraft oxygen hose and bailout bottle hose end connector.
One of these two oxygen setups were used. The CRU-8/P connector was introduced during the mid-late
1950s for many USAF aircraft, possibly the T-33A also? A late 1950s dated USAF pamphlet titled Survival
and Emergency Uses of the Parachute was installed somewhere in the parachute assy. along with a parachute
logbook. A sage green nylon back cushion was used with the harness. A fixed hook blade parachute shroud
line cutter knife was located in a sage green nylon pouch that slid over the right front riser. If the SRU-16/P
Minimum Survival Kit was in service in 1962, you would need one of these too. A pilot parachute (MA-1?)
was attached via nylon webbing to the top of the C-9 main parachute. There may have been a sage green
nylon quarter deployment bag located inside the parachute container to stow part of the parachute lines and
canopy. The manual parachute ripcord could have been either a small T-handle (blast handle) one, the
T-shaped cloverleaf style, or maybe even the oval-shaped style-will have to do some research on this.
If you decide to configure your seat as a USN/USMC version, I guarantee that some of the items that you
would need will be different! That's all I can think of for now. Hope this helps.
Edited by northcoastaero, 28 February 2017 - 11:29 PM.