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Rollerblades and brooms are a part of F-16s preventative maintenance kit!

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posted on Dec, 16 2007 @ 09:37 AM

Man, the walk of shame is getting sportier!

The next thing should definitely be the use of Segways, and then Roomba automatic vacuum cleaners.

Naturally a special F-16 dispensing “Roomba cluster pod” will have to be developed, but in a decade or two it just may happen!

[edit on 16-12-2007 by iskander]

posted on Dec, 16 2007 @ 04:06 PM
Is there a point here? ANY fighter has a tendency to suck objects into the engine, and the F-16 is one of the worst for that, partly because of where the intake is located. Was there any point to this thread and your comments?

posted on Dec, 16 2007 @ 04:46 PM
I don't get it either.

Yeah they look silly, but someone has to keep the runways clear of debris and personnel with brooms and roller blades probably do a better job than any machine.

Furthermore, I doubt that the F-16 will be in service in twenty years.

posted on Dec, 16 2007 @ 05:56 PM
Merry Christmas, here is a ride on an f-18 you should try to catch a ride on sometime.

Turn your sound up!

posted on Dec, 16 2007 @ 06:00 PM
Looks like a faster way to do it than what my Mt Home AFB son-in-law Air Force member tells me.

Common to shut the runway down now and then, get a lot of personnel out there and walk the runway looking for debris.

Surprising at how much they find.

posted on Dec, 17 2007 @ 03:30 AM
Anybody with previous experience in the Air Force would know this as a "FOD walk" (FOD= Foreign Object Damage). This is a daily occurrence on Air Force Bases (at least American). Frankly, I'm surprised the Brass approved the use of Roller-Blades. They would seem to encourage Airmen "speed up" the process, increasing the likelyhood of missing a potential fan blade-damaging screw or bolt.

When I was stationed at Langley AFB, we also had magnets mounted on our maintenance vehicles that would pick up ferrous metals (like screws, bolts, and tools). FOD prevention is a major issue in the U.S. Air Force; FOD walks, magnets on most flightline vehicles, Tool Inventory Controls and MANY technical orders/rules are JUST for this purpose!

Nothing like a $700,000 engine being damaged by a $3.14 screw

posted on Dec, 17 2007 @ 04:58 AM
Just looks like a sensible way to make the FOD plod more interesting - I think the chances of missing something because of speed are cancelled out by keeping the mind active - FOD plod is seriously boring. And those blades are well good for leg muscles.

posted on Dec, 17 2007 @ 02:17 PM
Old Skool skateboards with a couple of ramps would make it more fun.

But seriously, what about those pooper-scooper vacuums that the French use to clean the pavements.

There you go, two awesome ideas that will extend the life of the F-16. It's Christmas, I'm full of help, or full of something else...

posted on Dec, 17 2007 @ 05:47 PM
"FOD walk" aka “the walk of shame”.

FOD is an extension of engendering philosophy which is dictated by political standing.

Running operations from unprepared airfields is a basic requirement for defensive operations.

When engineers are not considering operations from unprepared airfields into their designs because such requirements are simply not posed, it’s obvious that defensive operations are not the priority.

When war planes are designed and manufactured with such ridiculous FOD requirements, a 12 year old girl with a glass jar full of gumballs could be consider as a saboteur.

posted on Dec, 17 2007 @ 05:53 PM
My husband is Air Force and he used to work out on the flightline (he was weapons) and he just saw this picture and said that would have been soooo much easier then just walking! LOL
Its a really sucky part of the job he said.

[edit on 17-12-2007 by greeneyedleo]

posted on Dec, 17 2007 @ 09:16 PM

he just saw this picture and said that would have been soooo much easier then just walking! LOL Its a really sucky part of the job he said.

He’s correct, because the guys in the pictures are not American! It’s a European NATO airstrip!

What’s really “sucky” is FOD on Soviet type airstrips in Iraq and Afghanistan. They are so cracked and overtaken with grass and weeds, that it’s almost impossible to spot debris.

Soviets/Russians did often use street sweeper vacs for quick runs in order to remove larger chunks, but since all of their front line/tactical aircraft incorporate strict unprepared airstrip operation requirements, they can take off and land from dirt roads and any type of paved surfaces long and straight enough.

Currently being the only dedicated front-line fighter, MiG-29 is the only fighter which uses a system that allow it to be fully operational from unprepared airstrips, and that includes maintenance.

On take of main air intakes close with protective grates, and air fed through upper air intake inlets which not only protect the compressor blades from debris, but literally help to raise the front end entire airframe which increases the effeteness of the lifting body and allow for the engines to literally push the plane into the air.

To this day Fulcrum enjoys the shortest takeoff run, simply because being a front-line fighter, scrambling is its very purpose.

I’m not going into comparisons between the Falcon and the Fulcrum, because comparing them to each other is like comparing apples to oranges.

One evolved from a cheap stop gap alternative into a capable multi-role platform, while another was designed and used as a dedicated front-line fighter, comparing them directly is utterly useless, because by their very nature they have entirely different roles.

General understanding of Fulcrums maintenance by Western techs differs from Russian techs entirely.

Soviet/Russian philosophy for front line fighters did not change much since WWII, and that means that front line equipment gets very little operational time between rotations for complete overhauls, while Western gear is fully serviced and generally have much longer service life.

That’s why Fulcrums engines can be swapped out with in half an hour, but attempting to service them in the field is utterly unrealistic. They simply exhaust their service life, and are rotated back to the manufacturer for recycling, so there are no worries about FODs at all.

In WWII Soviet front line fighters generally flew only 50 hours before becoming “hand me downs”, and that’s why they generally did not even have squadron markings.

They flew them hard, they flew them to fight a war, and that’s what it’s all about.

Same philosophy works to this day. Easy of manufacture allows them to produce in mass thus keeping up high rotation rate, which completely eliminates an entire logistical nightmare of on-site maintenance, which becomes completely impossible to carry out effective as soon as it’s touched by enemy fire.

When WWII VVS fought with Luftwaffe in Kuban, generals on both sides said that it’s not the pilots that won the skies, it’s the ground crews that kept their birds flying.

While Germans performed complete maintenance/rebuilding of complex and high tech engines, Russians were simply swapping out entire nits for new/rebuilt ones received from the factories.

When it’s winter and when enemy artillery is pounding your airfield, attempting to rebuild a Daimler-Benz V-12 that’s built like a Swiss watch is just a tad more difficult then simply swapping it for a new one, and that’s what Russians did.

While they always kept replacement engines in reserve and used them when they were needed, when they did have time their techs did rebuild engines on the ground, and had a much easier time doing it.

Same thing to this day and American philosophy also stayed the same by deploying full maintenance crews with air wings flying delicate aircraft that can’t handle the elements while having to operate from pristine paved airstrips.

A simple example; Taiwan is one of the nations that runs F-16s, and when they were hit by mud slides, one spilled on the airstrip from which their F-16s were operating from.

All flights were grounded until the mud dried out the strip was completely moped up, all while Chinese air force did not stop its flights.

Back in May of 1999 a single seater Falcon disappeared in eastern Taiwan during a routine training mission, since no communication from the pilot was recorder and no distress signal was sent catastrophic engine failure is suspected, and since maintenance log books were clean, it was unofficially written of to FOD.

A chip on the compressor blade can result in immediate explosion of the turbine, or a micro fractures can gradually expand until catastrophic failure and that expansion can take hours.

Here’s another interesting bit of history. Back in WWII when rains turned all dirt airstrips into mud swamps, Russians attached winter skies to some of their light Yaks, unloaded all of the ammo to lighten up as much as possible, dragged them out on the strips with tractors and actually ran resonance flights deep into German held territory simply because Luftwaffe could not get off the ground to challenge them.

As history shows, FOD = inability to function when it counts.

posted on Dec, 17 2007 @ 09:34 PM
All good points iskander. The thing is though if a airforce puts into place a defence and plans for FOD pervention then all the power too them. If you want to buy 15s, 16s or 18s and then know you save weight minus the screens or covers in comparision to the 29 or 30 and instead do the walk of shame. For the USAF there is "slim to none chance" that you would ever have to use a unprepared runway.

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