In this video there are two "holes" that I'm curious about.

One is rectangular in the all white section of the plane that flutters open/close during flight. The other is somewhat oval and is on the line between the blue and white areas.

enter image description here

It appears to slowly close with none of the "flutter" displayed by the other.

  • $\begingroup$ The second "hole" I am referring to is just forward of the first one, above the wing. It is visible, for example, at 7 seconds. $\endgroup$
    – SezMe
    Commented Mar 19 at 15:14

1 Answer 1


Ok, I found online the maintenance manual

From part 1, page 2-233 (270 of the pdf) we find that the "holes" are the Engine Ground Cooling Doors:

F-104 Engine Ground Cooling Doors Figure

Note: the nose of the aircraft is on the left in this diagram.

Furthermore, form this cutaway:

F-104 Cutaway

we see that the oil coolers (40 in the diagram) are behind the rectangular "hole"

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Nice find, also mentioned in the F-104D flight manual: cooling air for engine ground operations is supplied through four single and four double inboard opening suck-in doors (spring loaded to closed) just aft of the firewall. It seems these doors were first added for the 1958 altitude record. $\endgroup$
    – mins
    Commented Mar 20 at 11:43

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