posted on May, 17 2006 @ 02:43 AM
All this talk about the B-1 being a maintenance nightmare and that it's a piece of crap comes from a bunch of uninformed fools. First off it is a
very complicated jet which does mean that it requires a lot of maintenance.
Yeeeeap, when those engines fall on farmer Brown's North 40 it generally does hurt public relations.
Partly due to it having 4 afterburning engines,
Which have been breaking their fans since 1989. Still doing 100hr swirl tests? Of course then there's the B-52 with eight, none of which have had a
major upgrade done to them as the F101-GE-102 has required. Or the B-2 which flies almost twice as high and has an /ungodly/ compression mixing and
AOA factor on it's daggerlets. But god knows, you'd better have burning, you use the supersonics /so/ often and you wouldn't be able to match
either the predecessor or the followon for _short runway_ capability (the original 'dispersal so they have to nuke half the country' municipal
airport justification back in the LRSA days) if you didn't.
Snicker. Hit any pelicans recently? Overtorqued the spline shaft and driven one through the intermediate aft tank? Had a fuel line cut loose and
burn for 20 minutes because there were no fire warning sensors in that part of the jet? Failed to sweep altogether so you had to use Eddie's Patch
to slam down on?
Of course the REAL laugh is the 10-14,000ft refuel altitude at anything /like/ useful mission weight.
And probably the most advanced defensive systems in the inventory
Bwuahahaahhahahahahah! Ohoho, please, my ribs! Having gone from 120 LRUs down to 34. And another 15 on the chopping block for Blk.F? Having
strapon'd a /F-16/ generalist RWR with about half the bandwidth coverage and NONE of the ELS capabilities that the ALQ-161 was supposed to have
native? With the SPO itself admitting that the ALQ-161 was not up to spec for the original 1980's mission spectrum and likely /never would/ be
capable of matching the 1990's spec? Tell, oh wise sir, does the TWF now see through the jet to provide forward quarter warning? Can it see
passives or hojam threats? Can you even /hear/ Bands 1-3 without the 'new and improved' (ALQ-135 mod) lowband system that isn't yet paid for? The
ALE-50 is basically a dumb repeater which radiates to every putz who cares to listen. Yet it takes upwards of 200 sends to prime the bird because the
aeroacoustics off the back of the jet are -so violent- (witness the number of VGens you constantly replace). The ALE-55 'smart' jammer cannot even
be MOUNTED because the snake whipping sheers the tether. Heck, even when it was 'all there' the ALQ-161 antenna system was rumored to have serious
problems getting adequate beam steer from altitude (once we came up out of the weeds where only SIOP could live) that was part of what Mod-2 was going
to fix. No Money=All-Vapor. So that now you are a flying lighthouse or...nothing. So much for the DSUP eh?
But at ellsworth we recently saw a 93% mission capable rate, and when we have gone to war with this jet I doubt that it's missed more than 1 or 2 vul
periods in all the recent wars/conflicts whatever you want to call them.
How many jets? How many months? Was it a Surge-Ex and how long did you spend replenishing the parts lockers once you were done playwarring? How
many of those GTW scenarios had you dropping more than dumb 82s? How many of those were against REAL threats? How many tankers did you suck dry
making the run to /Kosovo/ from _Blightey_?
As far as the B-52 being a more capable and flexible jet YOU ARE WAY OFF! The B-1 carries more guided and unguided weapons than the B-52 and we have
a better bombing system.
More as in more numbers or types? Over what radius? With something like 80,000lbs of penetration gas, you are looking at 2 bays with CWM and an aux
tank. That's 52-56 Mk.82. Or about 16 JDAM. Depending on whether they still have the MER rail or are all HSAB'd, a BUFF can match that. A B-2
can beat it.
Can you mount an EO aperture? Oops, there goes your LGB. Do you have a DL capable standoff missile (i.e. Has JASSM with datalink even been cleared
from a Bone?)? Can you carry Harpoon? Can you carry mines? Can you carry ANY weapon externally in that 165 decibel slip stream? How many jets was
it that had the pylon wiring and DR units? Oh, /that's right/, TWO! How many even RAN with the AGM-86 configured bay? ONE! As bad as the Bone's
airfoil AOA and power limitations are there is no reason to kid around about it EVER being an external carriage machine, you just cannot afford the
drag and L@D hits. Similarly, the AGM-129 is so damn fat that you can't even load more than four per CRM and guess what? NONE WERE EVER BOUGHT FOR
THE FLEET. This makes sense given as the total clearance program was 2 internal shots for the ALCM and about 20 carriage-only trials for the ACM.
The APQ-164 has lousy range resolution (about what an F-15E can achieve at 40nm) and 'minor antenna control software' upgrades asside, this led the
folks doing the OIF attacks to do their LAR calcs and runin timings with the Fujitsu PDAs strapped to their legs rather than trust the mighty OAS
systems for dropping JDAM. Indeed, you couldn't have even live-folder boot strapped that well except for the BLOS datalink. Which B-52s took into
OAF in 1999.
They sent 28 B-52Hs to Diego, 4 B-2As and 11 B-1s. Reason? The B-52 could stay longer with more gas, fly higher and cost about half as much to
maintain per flight hour.
Assuming you are a B-1 WSO (only because the DSO is now a monkey-flips-switch position) you would know all of the above. Don't snowjob these poor
people. They get enough crap dumped on them by their ever loving federal government as is. Stratcom is a joke. Our bomber fleet is a joke. Even
so, the only reason the B-1 is even mentioned is because it looks sexy.