For Sale (Cheap)

A flyable piece of Cold War history can be yours for the tidy sum of $4.65 million.
A flyable piece of Cold War history can be yours for the tidy sum of $4.65 million.

Have you ever wanted your own fighter jet? Even better, one with an extra seat to take a friend to Mach 2? If so, and you have nearly five million dollars in the bank, you’re in luck: A U.S.-based used airplane broker is selling a MiG-29UB fighter jet. The Cold War-era fighter has less than a thousand hours on it, and with proper maintenance you’ll be able to fly for thousands more. Radar and weapons not included.

The MiG-29 was the main tactical multi-role fighter of the Soviet Union during the final years of the Cold War. First produced in 1981, it was meant to be an inexpensive but capable fighter that could fill the majority of the USSR’s air fleets. In that sense it was very similar to the American/NATO F-16 Fighting Falcon. The MiG-29 was widely exported, from Algeria to North Korea, and like the F-16 is still manufactured today in a heavily updated form, the MiG-29K.

The end of the Cold War and the breakup of the Soviet Union saw MiGs scattered among the old Soviet republics. One such country was Ukraine. Now Florida-based Raptor Aviation is selling a MiG-29UB built in 1986 for $4.65 million. The airframe has only 818 hours on it, and was overhauled at the 700 hour mark by the Lviv State Aircraft Repair Plant in Ukraine.

This particular aircraft is a two seater trainer fighter, with room for student and instructor pilots. Out of military service that means there’s room for you and a date. The MiG’s two Klimov RD-33 afterburning turbofan engines means you can take a special someone to Mach 2.4 or as high as 60,000 feet, which should be high enough to see the curvature of the Earth. The MiG-29 only has a range of 1,100 miles, so cross-country flights will require a few stops to take on additional fuel.

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Why doesn’t Canada buy this fighter? It’s got more life left in it’s airframe and probably better performance capabilities than the Model T’s we’re buying off of the Australian ‘used fighter’ parking lot. Heck, our ‘Stolen Valour’ aka liar (diversity makes us stronger) Defence Minister could re-write the numbers of aircraft needed to qualify as a squadron. Walla… a new ‘squadron’. One CF29. Our broken down underfunded, under manned (oops under peopled) air force just ‘balanced itself’. And increased in offensive capability by one entire squadron. Because we said so.