Starfighters with Belgium

Last revised December 12, 1999

Beginning in February of 1963, the Force Aerienne Belge (Belgian Air Force) received a total of 100 SABCA-built F-104Gs (including 25 from MAP funding) and twelve Lockheed-built TF-104Gs (three of them from MAP funding). They were assigned to four Escadrilles, the 23eme and 31eme (both of 10 Wing) at Kleine Brogel and the 349eme and 350eme (both of 1 Wing) at Beauvechain (Bevekom). 1 Wing was an all-weather air defense organization whereas 10 Wing was a tactical strike/fighter bomber unit. Serials were FC-01/FC-12 for the Lockheed-supplied TF-104Gs and FX-1 through FX-100 for the SABCA-built F-104Gs. An extra F-104G was built to replace FX-27 which crashed before delivery but was given the same serial number.

The Starfighters remained in service with the FAB until the 1980s when they were replaced by General Dynamics F-16A/B Fighting Falcons. First to convert was 1 Wing which transferred its F-104Gs to 10 Wing pending that outfit's receipt of its own F-16s. The last Starfighters left Belgian service in September of 1983. A total of 41 Belgian Starfighters, including three TF-104Gs, were lost in accidents, or nearly 37 percent of the force.

18 Belgian F-104Gs were later transferred to Turkey.

The following FAB units operated the Starfighter:


  1. The Lockheed F-104G/CF-104, Gerhard Joos, Aircraft in Profile No. 131, Doubleday, 1969.

  2. The World's Great Interceptor Aircraft, Gallery Books, 1989.

  3. Lockheed F-104 Starfighter, Steve Pace, Motorbooks International, 1992.

  4. Lockheed Aircraft Since 1913, Rene J. Francillon, Naval Institute Press, 1987.

  5. Lockheed F-104 Starfighter, John Fricker, Wings of Fame, Vol 2, Aerospace Publishing Ltd, 1996.