A native Californian, Gregory â€œWiredâ€ Colyer took his first flight at age 7 in a Cessna 172 in Sonoma, Calif. Hooked ever since, Greg has been flying for almost three decades after earning his license in 1982 while serving in the U.S. Army from 1982-87.
Since leaving the service, Colyer has been employed by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)Â as an air traffic controller at Oakland ARTCC. His passion for the cockpit never left him as he continued to fly as a hobby and an occasional airshow flying a Beech T-34 Mentor until he imported a Russian L-29 Delfin Jet in 2003.
After flying a Lockheed T-33s in 2007, Greg set his sights on an upgrade to the U.S. Air Forceâ€™sÂ first operational jet and a real piece of U.S. aviation history. He acquiredÂ a T-33 and named itÂ Ace MakerÂ in 2008. Then Colyer founded the nonprofit (501c-3) T-33 Heritage Foundation to help in the preservation of the aircraft type.
Colyer holds a commercial pilot certificate withÂ instrument, single and multi engine ratings as well asÂ being a certified flight instructor. Colyer is type rated in Aero Vodochodyâ€™s L-29 Delfin, L-39 AlbatrosÂ and the Lockheed T-33 Shooting Star. He also holds a level I aerobatic low level card andÂ fast lead formationÂ card round out his qualifications.
Colyer works to stay in shape for flying high performance aircraft by participating in competitive cycling with the Taleo cycling teamÂ and in an occasional ironman triathlon.
Colyer would like to acknowledge and give aÂ veryÂ special thanks toÂ Wayne Handley and Randy Howell of the Patriot Jet team for their coaching, advice, and support.
LockheedÂ T-33/Canadair CT-33 specifications:
Engine:Â Allison J-33/Rolls Royce Nene 10
Length:Â 37â€™ 8â€
Height:Â 11â€™ 8â€
Wing Span:Â 42â€™5â€ w/tip tanks
Max weight:Â 16,800 lbs.
Max Fuel:Â 677 imp/810 U.S. gallons
Range:Â 1350 nm
Power:Â 5200/5400 lbs. thrust
Max Speed:Â 505 kts/.80M
Ceiling:Â 45,000 ft.