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Understanding a misunderstood fighter, the Super Hornet.

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posted on Feb, 15 2006 @ 01:59 PM
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The US Navy & the evolution of a CBG into a CSF. Carriers in the early days were used to protect a fleet from enemy aircraft.

The F-14 was designed to be a carrier based swing wing fleet defense fighter. As Carriers are now used in many different missions, a multi-mission fighter was needed. Hence the F/A-18E/F "Super Hornet".

Gentleman, the fact that the Navy keeps buying more, means the F-18s will be around for along time. The F-35 will not be replacing the F-18 outright. You will see a mixture of F-18s & F-35s for many years to come.

I mean it's not really that complicated. The F-14 was created in a time where the USN was preparing for another battle of the Atlantic and had to keep the SLOC open during WWIII. Massive waves of Soviet Bombers and missiles were going to challenge this and the F-14 was designed to beat that threat as well as lower level threats in general. So in a way it could be said that the F-14 was defensive in nature as a platform all things considered.

The F/A-18E was created in the post cold war as a primarily offensive platform that was made to take the fight to the enemy whether it be in the air land or sea and replace muliple platforms with a common airframe. The F/A-18E was intended to serve along side the F-35 well into the 21st century which is why it incorporates features such as Stealth and AESA ect. Again an emphasis on offense for this fighter.

[edit on 15-2-2006 by Hockeyguy567]

[edit on 15-2-2006 by Hockeyguy567]




posted on Feb, 15 2006 @ 02:52 PM
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So what exactly can the F-18 do better that a re-designed (revamped) F-14 couldn't do?



Interestingly, I just learned 20 mins ago that even the original design of the F/A-18 was a balls up, in that the elevators do not have enough authority to pitch the nose up on a cat take-off.

Thats why they use the rudders deflected inboard to induce further pitching moments to get the thing into the air.

See here:




It was a crap airframe when it was first designed, and the subpar update hasn't improved it any.



posted on Feb, 15 2006 @ 05:14 PM
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Also, those big LERX, 1970's fuselage contours and afterburning nozzles are how stealthy? Not very much.



posted on Feb, 15 2006 @ 06:41 PM
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Alright Waynos, not an actual stealth aircraft per se, but a reduced RCS aircraft, don't take my word for it.

www.janes.com...

Since 2001, F-14 is a fairly easy prey for Rafale, but in May of 2005, joint french-US exercises with F-18E/F forced a french pilot to say: US have a best fighter with their present F-18... (from an interviewed french Aeronavale Commandant from 11F November 2005).

And that is just one example, the F-14 is also a maintinence nightmare for the USN, the Super Hornet is much easy in this area.



posted on Feb, 15 2006 @ 06:53 PM
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I can't open the link hockeyguy, it says 'not valid' but yes, saying 'reduced RCS' is more accurate. Although in reality the term 'reduced RCS' (as also used by my favourite, the Typhoon - just in case you think I am Hornet bashing) is meaningless ie' reduced from what, to what?' it is unquantifiable. However the term 'stealth' which you first used whilst also pretty vague, does have a definite overtone that conjures up thoughts of the F-22 and B-2 etc which would be quite misleading to use when referring to an F-18 variant of any kind.



posted on Feb, 15 2006 @ 07:19 PM
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Originally posted by waynos
I can't open the link hockeyguy, it says 'not valid' but yes, saying 'reduced RCS' is more accurate. Although in reality the term 'reduced RCS' (as also used by my favourite, the Typhoon - just in case you think I am Hornet bashing) is meaningless ie' reduced from what, to what?' it is unquantifiable. However the term 'stealth' which you first used whilst also pretty vague, does have a definite overtone that conjures up thoughts of the F-22 and B-2 etc which would be quite misleading to use when referring to an F-18 variant of any kind.


I think the actual RCS size of the Super Hornet is classified, but I have heard from a number of sources, it is somewhat of a smaller RCS compared to the Typhoon and Rafale, I really, really don't want to start a pissing contest.

Here is the article:




A Boeing Phantom Works team is working on the design of a stealthier version of the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet, known internally as the Block 3. The design is being studied as a hedge against further delays with the Lockheed Martin F-35C Joint Strike Fighter (JSF), which has already slipped by at least a year.

Block 3 studies are being led by the Phantom Works' low-observable (LO) team, headed by Alan Wiechmann. (Super Hornets are now being delivered in the Block 2 configuration, with a revised nose to accommodate the Raytheon APG-79 radar.) The basic Super Hornet already incorporates some LO technology, including edge alignments, swept inlets and treated blocker vanes in front of the engines, and the Phantom Works has been working since the early 1990s on ways to reduce the radar cross-section (RCS) of conventional aircraft and external stores. Boeing engineers acknowledge that the Block 3 would not be as stealthy as the JSF, and state that there are no plans to change the external shape of the aircraft, but assert that even today's aircraft has more LO technology in it than is generally recognised.

Meanwhile, US Navy (USN) Super Hornet programme manager Captain Don Gaddis disclosed at the Avalon air show that the USN has changed it s future force mix. Previously, it planned to field 20 squadrons of F/A-18E/Fs, a fleet of EA-18G jamming aircraft and 20 squadrons of JSFs. Now, however, the USN plans to operate 22 F/A-18E/F squadrons and 18 F-35C squadrons. The change will not make any immediate difference to aircraft purchases, Capt Gaddis said. The reduction in JSF numbers will not take effect until the end of the programme, while the extra Super Hornet squadrons will be filled by higher utilisation of the basic aircraft and by rationalising test and training assets.



posted on Feb, 15 2006 @ 07:20 PM
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That is one area where I love the F-18, its easy to maintain. They have survived surface to air missile hits, landed back on the carrier, and been back in action the next day. This happened during the first gulf war I believe. Its also very versatile. During the first gulf war the F-18 went to bomb a target, ran into an enemy aircraft, downed it, continued on its mission, and took out the target on the ground then returned to the carrier. A very valuble asset to the USN.



posted on Feb, 15 2006 @ 07:42 PM
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All aircraft in the us navy are built with that survivability.
I've seen tomcats land all messed up.
The fact of tha matter is....we no longer need to intercept Soviet bombers.
That's why we created the AIM-54.
The tomcat is still quite a formidable platform, but the military's role has changed.
I left VF-41 Black aces in 1996 and shortly after, That Squadron switched planes to the 2 seater f-18E and moved from virginia to somewhere in cali....which pissed me off to no end....damn if MY Squadron is switching to the "fag F-18"....(Before the mods delete that, it's what we called the marine F-18's in Fallon and El Centro. I really don't know why)
We (the US) no longer need that long range first strike capability from a fighter.

Don't get me wrong, I love the F-14 and it could go through hell and be right back up and flying...much like most combat aircraft.

granted I was with A's....built in 1974 and they still flew amazing. I saw the cockpit of a D once and almost fainted....lol

It's time has passed.

-DT

"Dizzy" VF-41 Black Aces 1992-1996


I'm a great speller....lol


[edit on 15-2-2006 by Derek Trance]



posted on Feb, 15 2006 @ 08:09 PM
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No hockeyguy, we've been there before, lol.
I dare say both sides will claim their plane is 'stealthiest'. who can say which is right? The F-18 looks about as unstealthy as you can get in a modern fighter (but thats not to say it hasn't been 'reduced'
) and no, I don't think the Typhoon or Rafale appear to be much different either.



posted on Feb, 15 2006 @ 08:59 PM
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Originally posted by waynos
No hockeyguy, we've been there before, lol.
I dare say both sides will claim their plane is 'stealthiest'. who can say which is right? The F-18 looks about as unstealthy as you can get in a modern fighter (but thats not to say it hasn't been 'reduced'
) and no, I don't think the Typhoon or Rafale appear to be much different either.



Lol, I hear ya man. I don't mind arguing at times, but sometimes they piss me off, and I know they piss you off as well.



posted on Feb, 16 2006 @ 03:56 AM
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Hockeyguy567,

>>
The US Navy & the evolution of a CBG into a CSF. Carriers in the early days were used to protect a fleet from enemy aircraft.
>>

A myth. The very first carriers being seaplane conversions of light cruisers then employed exclusively in the scout role themselves. As such, they were to be used to provide a naval ASST recce role with secondary gunfire spotting and force communications as well as /occasionally/ to protect convoys from other seaplanes and dirigibles.

ASW was another early experiment I think.

Yet even by the end of WWI, Carriers were already being used as a method to strike littoral targets from beyond the reach of contemporary landbases (it was actually 'safer' to land on a carrier in some ways than a mud field but the absence of a dedicated landing-on deck in most of the thru-deck conversions made it more hazardous than it seemed.).

One such attack being against a Zeppelin hangar in Denmark around 1916-17.

This experimental mindset continued on throughout the interwar years, culminating in the U.S. 'Fleet Problem' experiments nine and ten off Panama (1928 or so) with Sara and Langley I think it was. Experiments which long predated the 1930's War Plan Orange idiocy of bringing battlewagons into Crossed-T conditions with an enemy (naval gun) main force opponent. As well as the logistic stupidity of creeping island capture to establish 'air and naval bases' (across the blue void of the Pacific, riiiiight).

So, from quite early on, it was recognized that naval aircraft could hostage targets deeper inland, with less risk to mines, subs and PT boat type threats than heavy gun platform advocates liked to think about. Indeed, one could almost say that the Washington Treaty was established in such a way as to guarantee the development of carrier airpower as a primary sea based power projection method. And that goes all the way back to 1922 or so.

>>
The F-14 was designed to be a carrier based swing wing fleet defense fighter.
>>

Another misnomer, albeit a conditional one. The _VfAX_ began life as an attack optimized fighter. The official story being that McNamara's TFX would serve as a FADF. The unofficial version being that the USN, LOMD jealous of the Eagle and wanting to begin design studies that would 'eventuate' in the 303E/Tomcat (when they finally so weighted the spec as to make killing the F-111B inevitable), used the ruse of 'little f, big A' to get the project going.

The _reality_ of life being rather different.

1. The story of a quest for a perfect FAD platform having begun back in the mid 50's with the RAFAD study. This showed that the (F-4H Phantom Baseline) ability to perform DLI or Deck Launched Intercepts terminating in Mach 2 Sparrow launches against AVMF bombers increasingly switched to standoff missile attack.
The resulting 'better choice' being the F6D which could carry a 5ft wide radar dish along with 6-8 missiles for 6-10hrs while /already at/ 200-250nm standoff from the boat. Working in concert with the E-1/E-2 for area surveillance before lofting AAM-N-10 Eagles up to 160nm into the face of the enemy at well over Mach 5.
The Navy nixed this because it wasn't macho enough and they refused to purchase 'another mission on an already crowded deck'. Despite McDonnell Douglas' argument that converting the F6D to perform utility missions (EW, targeting, tanker) could be done as readily as had been the case with the F3D Skyknight and indeed as /would/ be done with similar types such as the Intruder, Sky Warrior and Viking.

2. McNamara, hearing of the turf war between the USN and MACDAC decided everyone could use with a little humility lesson and dictated that the USN employ a modified version of the USAF TFX.
The resulting F-111B, while falling short of all specs (because that's the way the Squid Fighter Jockeys wrote them), coming closer to meeting them than either the F-4 or the F-14 did _as an FADF missileer_. Which is to more missiles to farther with more time on station and closer to spec boarding rates (maximum speeds etc.) carrier suitability.
Obviously, being based on the F-111 structure, it could very well have been the jet to replace /both/ the F-4 -and- the anachronistic at start A-6 as a combined roles platform.
Even as a basic FADF, it carried 4 AIM-54 to 250nm and stayed on station for about 3hrs, courtesy of twice the gas as the F-14.
The problem being that, by the mid-60s, nearly all AShMs were not only long ranged (250nm+) but increasingly supersonic and light enough to be carried in multiple. Thus the ability of any FADF to provide useful kill capability was dependent on it's killing the parent force at ranges greatly beyond what the early Kennel/Kangaroo weapons could let the Russian bombers standoff from the fleet. Something made all the more difficult by the fact that the AWG-9 followon to the APQ-81 was only 36" across. And the AIM-54 was roughly a 70-90nm ranged, slow (single stage) weapon. 'Half the missile' that the Eagle had been spec'd to be.
At the same time, ballistic missiles had replaced ALL manned penetrating systems as the primary means of both strategic and theater nuclear force 'deterrence' (trip wired as it was) at half the cost.
And so the USN was once again stuck with the notion of being a coastal/amphibious support 'reaction force' in pissant battles. As a REFORGER alternative to maintaining blue water SLOCs against a 'navy designed by a field marshal' which was predominantly interested in submarine attack.

3. Along comes the F-14. A fighter which is designed around carriage of 'up to six' of the AIM-54s but which rarely flew with more than two because of boarding issues with faulty flight controls, and underrated powerplants. A fighter which can be defeated by a well flown F-4 and whipped easily by the A-4. A fighter whose agility is volumetrically (fuel fraction) further compromised around a 'similar' FORCAP requirement of 2hrs at /150/nm with reserves for either a supersonic dash or a return to the carrier. But which needs a KA-6D as an overhead-or-declared-emergency 'standard whale' even if it doesn't sprint, on a 3hr cycle. A fighter whose standard deckload compliment is two 12 plane squadrons. Whose only job is Fleet Air Defense. Even though they have less than one complete load of Phoenix, per jet, in the magazines. A fighter which exists in an era where the missiles are supersonic and 400nm capable. And the bombers which fire them are supersonic and /air refuelable/. So that multiple missile loadouts are now standard. A fighter which must protect not only a CVBG whose value has tripled since the Nimitz class came online. But also a REFORGER convoy which is upwards of 100nm long. And _impossible to hide_ from satellite (ROR/EOR) targeting which is now standard. A fighter which is coming online with nuclear armed Terrier/Tartars 'unacknowledged' as a response to similarly lethal Russian AShM. A fighter which is less than 10 years from being faced with a TRUE Fleet Air Defense Asset in the Ticonderoga.
i.e. Tom Connelly's 'Cat is a concept as much as platform marginalized by the amount of time it took to bring the airframe to service. At least if you believe the BS about how 'only' longrange defense of carriers justifies the equipment of a jet with LRAAM. The latter being actually the EXACT point at which you need max standoff because an LTA with Sparrow or AMRAAM can kill bombers formations in transit more effectively than a fighter can, at lower weight penalty for the required radar antenna. But a fighter cannot simply 'ignore' the S2A defenses which deny it's TARCAP approach to many targets, no least being S-300 protected airfields.

BLUNTLY: The fighter pilot penile envy desire for a hot rod ruined the F-14 as a FADF even as it made the excuse used (too many types on deck) used to deny the F6D ludicrous for the number of Tomcats needed to replace either the it or the F-111B on a number-of-rounds-vs.-airframe basis of 'auxilliary mission' coverage. Unfortunately, it also ruined it as an EM platform in the eyes of most (the IDFAF being one of the particularly respected 'experts in the field' and the ones who beat the Tomcat, repeatedly, easily, with F-4E and A-4N during evaluations).

What is particularly 'ironic' is that the F-14 has always been a potentially more capable interdictor than either the F/A-18 or the F-111B. The former because it cannot go anywhere (or bring back anything) without marginalizing it's catloads and A2G/SEAD varieties with added fuel. The latter because it doesn't have the effective wingloading or self-protect ordnance to go in without the aid of (much shorter ranging) other fighters anyway. The F-14 carries more fuel internally than an F/A-18 does with two tanks. With external fuel, the F-14 can carry more 2,000lb class munitions than two F/A-18A/C's can. The F-14 has a RIO that can run a complex A2G weapons system as readily as an AAW biased one. Legacy Hornet two seaters don't have the weight margin to operate aboard carriers. Lastly, at a time when a multiyear contract would have truly benefited the F-14 as a /developed/ weapons system (reliability, F401 engines, upgrades to multirole) both it and the F/A-18 were 'neck and neck' at around 36 million dollars apiece (the latter later went as low as 27 million before again increasing to over 40 in the later Lot-XII and on airframes with the LO treatments, new engines and radar/FLIR upgrades).

'Given it's original designation', where the USN screwed up, mightily, on the Tomcat was in not doing a boot strap mod with a period targeting pod along the lines of Pave Spike or ATLIS to allow the aircraft to employ PGMs sooner.

>>
As Carriers are now used in many different missions, a multi-mission fighter was needed. Hence the F/A-18E/F "Super Hornet".
>>

Carriers are used in more or less the exact number of roles as they always have been. The F/A-18E/F came about as a flybynight attempt to get 'under the radar' after the A-12 fiasco. Largely by stating that the airframe was a 'non developmental' modification of the baseline Hornet rather than a clean sheet of paper design. This allowed the USN to avoid the consequences of a prototyping effort at a time when the precursors to the Center Barrel problem was manifesting itself as a function of 4G service limits on a 'fighter' airframe whose original VFX-AS (Air Superiority) mission was to escort cheap attack aircraft with cheap fighters on bombing raids. Resulting in yet another 'mix' of airframes which can do half as much because they /carry/ half as much. To half the distance.

Diluting the airwing and adding more types.

Of course /later/ when VFX was firmed up to give the Navy an excuse to not take the 'winner of the LWF competition' (the F-16) as suggested by Congress, the A2G roles were added in as a justification for the first generation Hornet to be 'not really a YF-17 either' _new airframe_ design.

But even so, this is what was stated for VFX's principal roles and missions justification-

High performance, High Radius of action, gun, short and medium range missiles. The new fighter serving to 'augment' attack forces (then the A-6E and A-7E, both with combat radii over 500nm vs. the Hornets sub-350nm one) with supplemental ordnance while maintaining it's escort role with the example type comparison being the F-8 Crusader using a notional A2G capability bar defined by 'smart weapons and an A-7E type delivery system'.

i.e. Fly 190-250nm, drop bombs visually while 'protecting' real attack jets which can fly twice as far and will no longer be in service (nor certainly flying in daylight) by the time you get round to having a significant inventory of these jets available. Either because they will all be fatigued out of service or flying from different carriers as you _replace them_ with the F/A-18.

And so you see the process of Moreau'ean 'staple the wiggly bits together' bits of unrelated mission justifications being used to justify an eventual program purchase whose numbered profiteering is both the cause of demise of a 'total package' airwing concept. And the certainty that when they are gone, you are left with a standard of replacement capability whose SOLE 'smart weapon' then in fleet use was Walleye. And that weighs so much and is so draggy that no fighter would carry one and expect to perform -as a fighter-.

Mind you, the A-7E does have a good HUDWAC and the F/A-18 is a particularly stable and capable dive bomber, but only to the extent that you drop from 8-10,000ft. Which, in an age of pandemic MANPADS (50 shot at one A-4 Skyhawk during 1982) means putting ALL aircraft at EQUAL risk to a Shouf Mountain artillery suppression scenario in which you lose 3 reprisal aircraft to airdefense weapons which are effectively unsuppressable. With nary a fighter in sight.

Why even /have/ an 'escort' then eh?

This being just another STUPID GIT indictment of NavAir incompetence as they had employed LGB from Pave Knife and TRIM equipped aircraft not 10 years before in SEA. And had pioneered night attack with the Intruder long before that.

Again, all because the LOMD obsessive USN wanted 'a fighter' to match the USAF as hotrods that weren't (F-14) or which couldn't make range as mudmovers (F-18). And in getting what they wanted, not what this country /needed/, they assured that naval power projection capacities would drop to sub-WWII levels (similar delivery tactics, less range, smaller deckloads) and _similar attrition levels_.

The USN are cheap losers that are so scared of the USAF as a /purchasing/ agency before Congress that they constantly try to lowball their own acquisition programs and end up either creating monsters that cannot meet spec. Or cheating the companies to the point where they don't want to make it do so 'for cost' which is triple what it needs to be. In so doing they have collectively cost themselves:

1. The Roosevelt (Deck) Load of 70 airframes for a Reagan one of 40 (have 'too many types' now do you?).
2. Long range, High altitude, standoff strike (The A-12 and F-14D-as-QStrike, LGB then JDAM instead of SLAM/AIWS.)
3. Independent RSTA and tanking support (CSA dead in the water)
3. Any hope of advanced rollback-as-reachin (AAAM and now AARGM gone the way of the dodo, no advanced netjam /doctrine/ in the wings to replace to the EA-6B, no unitary glidekit weapons).

Doing all this, despite the fact that they _don't need_ to be as cheap-in-bulk as the AF does because they are a smaller (more value-dense) airpower agency that cannot generate as many sorties regardless. But whose 'defense' is largely assured by coastal standoff and a huge escort group. Even as they refuse to complete the switchover to longrange ISR support /inland/ targeting for Tomahawk 'independent' strike at pennies per ton mile equivalency with bomber cruise.

In this, the F/A-18E/F is less a measure of design incompetence in and of itself (though it most assuredly is that too) than what happens when you fail so many prior programs that you have to 'win ONE, any ONE' just to keep up with your 10-not-20 year replacement cycle on higher stressed NavAir airframes. If we had the philosophic and conop sophistication to make /airpower/ (not any one design but the modis) what it should be, the F/A-18 would not look like a bloated Bug-1 trying to be a strike fighter. It would look like a stealthy endurance platform, 'as small as possible' both as a function of signature reduction and airwing maximization. So as to /avoid/ dealing with 'Fighters and SAMs and MANPADS and Flak' But could simply employ COE tactics as simple _weapons carriers_ the characteristics of which munitions would (as they always should, being twice as easy and fast to develop) dominate the nature of the fight as well as it's outcome.

One might even be forgiven for saying that 'what we really need' is a Cheap, Stealthy, 'Missileer'.

More on the character of AESAs and suchlike 'advanced systems on yesterdays design' when I'm not so tired...


KPl.



posted on Feb, 16 2006 @ 07:48 AM
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I have always loved the F/A-18... it might not be the best... but it can do many things, and it is very flexible... besides... LOOK at it... I'd marry it if I were a plane too...



posted on Feb, 16 2006 @ 01:45 PM
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The Hornets are good planes but i find them too 'overated'

Id Well Rather use them than A-6 Intruders, A-7 Corsairs that were used before in the USN.

Everyones bailing for fighters these days, now the EA-6 Prowler is being replaced by a fighter jet airframe, the EF-18 Growler



[edit on 16-2-2006 by Browno]



posted on Feb, 16 2006 @ 03:36 PM
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The F14 is still a awesome fighter. It out performs the basic F18 in allot of areas including bombing for which the F14 never was designed. I do think that an redesigned Tomcat, the tomcat 21 would be a better plane the the Super Hornet but that can also be because im a huge fanboy of the F14 Tomcat.



posted on Feb, 16 2006 @ 05:29 PM
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Originally posted by Derek Trance
Don't get me wrong, I love the F-14 and it could go through hell and be right back up and flying...much like most combat aircraft.

granted I was with A's....built in 1974 and they still flew amazing. I saw the cockpit of a D once and almost fainted....lol

[edit on 15-2-2006 by Derek Trance]


The F-18 is still a much more low maintenance aircraft though. The F-14 was tough, yes, but the F-18 is much easier to maintain from what I have read on the aircraft. You have more experience than I do though, well I dont have any haha. I was just under this impression that the F-18 is much easier to maintain. Is this true or no?



posted on Feb, 16 2006 @ 09:03 PM
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Depends on the perspective, Hornets are easier to maintain because they were made with a later technology.

It's still just box changing for the line guys, but the AIMD guys may see a difference.

The only thing I didn't like about your normal f-18 was the range.

with a 2 seater as big as a tomcat, that problem has pretty much been filled in.

I'm still a die hard Tomcat man and I know Hoops or Easy or Zayas or Fox would run rings around those Marine f-18's...hehe.

But, the fact of the matter is, the design is over 30 years old.

I'm that guy that can rebuild a carburetor and hates fuel injection...but they don't make many carburetors these days.....you have to update sometime.

The aim-54C was built to take out soviet bombers. that threat is gone. It doesn't matter how good the plane and the pilots are, if the role changes....it all changes.

-DT



posted on Feb, 16 2006 @ 09:15 PM
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Well the Tomcat had a attack capability as well didn't it?. I read somewhere that the USN wanted to buy air-superiority and strike variants. Along with the interceptor variant.

F-14A Interceptor
F-14B Air-superiority
F-14C Strike Fighter



posted on Feb, 16 2006 @ 09:21 PM
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the B and D went through.

B was just new engines, D was a full cockpit avionics package....real pretty actually.

On a side note and with some Pride, MY Squadron, VF-41 Black aces which some may know from the 2 libian migs shot down was the first to ever use bombs in combat. As well as mines, flir and a ton of junk, 41 was always on top...before and after I got there.

Then we changed to VFA-41

The bombcat!

Had a nice pic of tomcat with 2 tails on the nose of aircraft 100 and 101. (The only aircraft that are not painted drab.)

The 2 tails were for the 2 roles.

-DT



posted on Feb, 17 2006 @ 04:51 AM
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claiming you can go back and add LO features to an already built aircraft is a bit like claiming an Edsul would be a better car with a different coat of paint. Sure, you can get a marginal reduction in RCS, but nowhere near what you can get by doing the job right in the first place. Lockheed discovered a lot of this when they built the U-2. They trried all kinds of things to reduce it's RCS, some of which were successful, but it still had a much higher RCS than it's followon did from the front. (Since it's follow on moved at Mach 3+, the front was the only angle that really mattered)



posted on Feb, 17 2006 @ 05:00 AM
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Replacing the F-14 would cripple the USNs air power, I would NEVER relace it unless i found somthing good as or better.

I would use a naval F-15 or this abandoned Naval ATF to take the F-14s place.

Maybe i would use the proposed Super Tomcat 21.

Which is more advanced, The F-14 Tomcat or the F-35 JSF?



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