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First Marine F-35B squadron receives first jet

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posted on Nov, 18 2012 @ 05:15 PM
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Third Marine Air Wing, Marine All Weather Fighter Attack Squadron 121 (dear god that's a mouthful), received their first F-35B on November 16th. A formal ceremony will take place November 20th. The Aircraft arrived at MCAS Yuma, flown by pilot instructor Maj A. C. Lieberman.

They are supposed to receive one aircraft a month until the squadron receives their complement of aircraft, scheduled for next summer.


On Nov. 16, at approximately 1 p.m., Third Marine Aircraft Wing’s first F-35B, piloted by F-35 pilot instructor Maj. A. C. Liberman, landed at Marine Corps Air Station Yuma.

The arrival of the first next gen aircraft is the highlight of the official re-designation of Marine All Weather Fighter Attack Squadron 121, an F/A-18 Hornet Squadron, as the world’s first operational F-35 squadron. The formal ceremony is scheduled for Nov. 20.

Capable of short take off and vertical landing (STOVL), the F-35B is the Joint Strike Variant the USMC will use to replace the Corps’ F/A-18 Hornet, AV-8B Harrier and EA-6B Prowler.

theaviationist.com...




posted on Nov, 18 2012 @ 07:03 PM
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I wonder if the problems were fixed or if they were just approved because of the 6 harriers that were destroyed last september.



posted on Nov, 18 2012 @ 07:05 PM
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Ive read the specs on both the F35 and the F22 and despite the oxygen issue that the F22 has encountered, it seems to be a better plane.
I really dont understand why they "stood down" on the F22 so soon. Look how long the F18 has been in service.



posted on Nov, 18 2012 @ 07:24 PM
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reply to post by Juggernog
 


They haven't stood the F-22 down. They were grounded for awhile but they're back in service, and the restrictions have mostly all been lifted. They only restriction left is the altitude restriction. They're currently limited to 35,000 in regular G-suits, or 40,000 feet with pressure suits until a new valve is installed in the life support system, then they're allowed back to 60,000.



posted on Nov, 18 2012 @ 07:28 PM
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reply to post by Zaphod58
 


Sorry, I worded my post wrong. What I meant was, they "discontinued" them and canceled previous orders that they made.
I could be wrong, to lazy to look it up right now.



posted on Nov, 18 2012 @ 07:32 PM
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reply to post by Juggernog
 


That was Gates when he was SecDef. He decided that they weren't going to have anything to fight, and were too expensive so he discontinued them.

As for the F-22/F-35 comparison, you can't really compare them. The F-22 is designed purely as a fighter. The F-35 is designed to replace at least four or five different aircraft, and do their missions well. But the F-35 RAM is actually better than the F-22s. It's designed so that they can repair it on the flightline, without special equipment that can only be used in a shop.



posted on Nov, 18 2012 @ 07:37 PM
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reply to post by Zaphod58
 


Ok. So, how do you think it stacks up against the most current Russian Su or the Chinese J's?
Im just curious.



posted on Nov, 18 2012 @ 07:43 PM
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reply to post by Juggernog
 


That's not going to be its mission though. That's going to be the F-22. I think the F-35 is going to surprise us though. It won't ever be a sky clearing beast, like the F-15 has been, but I think it will do better than we think against the Su-35.



posted on Nov, 19 2012 @ 02:41 AM
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Interesting. Maybe they will even see combat before the F22 does. But seeing how they won't have a full squadron for a while. Guess we'll wait and see.



posted on Nov, 19 2012 @ 09:18 AM
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That thing really has a lot of moving parts.
I hope they've got the foreseeable maintenance issues all worked out.
Awesome aircraft.



edit on 19-11-2012 by Lonewulph because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 19 2012 @ 09:29 AM
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reply to post by Lonewulph
 


It's actually supposed to be easier to work on for the line guys than the F-22. The RAM coating is much hardier, and much easier to maintain. It will stand up to weather, and environmental issues than earlier coatings.



posted on Nov, 19 2012 @ 10:36 AM
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reply to post by Zaphod58
 


My biggest concern as an ex-Line guy (5 years as an Aviation Machinist Mate, 4 carrier deployments) is spare parts. It used to be that if I needed a hydraulic line, I would go to supply and get a length of stainless steel tubing and a bag of fittings and fabricate it myself. Now the line is prefabricated and shrink wrapped by the manufacturer. This is fine, until you are forward deployed and somebody interdicts your supply line. Then what do you do? What happens when you start getting battle damage? These modern airframes require different repair procedures, sometimes under climate controlled conditions. I hope somebody put a lot of thought into what is going to be required to operate these aircraft.



posted on Nov, 19 2012 @ 10:58 AM
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Thanks for the update Zaphod. This is good news. I didn't think the F-35 was ready yet. Any word on when the airforce and navy versions will be ready? I'm sure they'll find a few issues with it as it's the first jet but hopefully it does well.
As for the F-35 vs Su-35, the Su-35 might have some advantages in some areas of flight performance but the F-35's advanced 360 degree sensor suite and stealth will be far in advance of any Flanker derivatives.
As Zaphod has pointed out the F-22 is the air supremacy jet and the F-35 is a multi-role jet.



posted on Nov, 19 2012 @ 12:07 PM
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reply to post by JIMC5499
 


From what I have heard just about every aspect of the F-35 is maintainable on the ramp, with very few specialty pieces of equipment required.



posted on Nov, 19 2012 @ 12:09 PM
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reply to post by Zaphod58
 

God I love that thing,...I want one!



posted on Nov, 19 2012 @ 12:11 PM
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reply to post by JimTSpock
 


The Air Force hasn't formally stood up a squadron yet, but they just completed the OUE testing that will formalize the training syllabus among other things.



posted on Nov, 19 2012 @ 04:27 PM
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Originally posted by Zaphod58
reply to post by JIMC5499
 


From what I have heard just about every aspect of the F-35 is maintainable on the ramp, with very few specialty pieces of equipment required.


Zap,

This bird is designed to replace the Harrier, which sometimes operates just behind the battle lines. If one supply convoy or helicopter gets destroyed, there is no way to maintain the aircraft. It is also designed to replace the F/A-18 as well. We had trouble getting enough parts on a CARRIER to maintain our aircraft. During the 1984-85 cruise I made, every squadron had one or two "hangar queens". These were the aircraft that we couldn't get parts for. In time parts were removed from them to keep other aircraft "up". We also had a problem with our engine test stand, which caused a shortage of helicopter engines. We would take an aircraft going into 28-day corrosion inspection and remove it's engines to put them into an aircraft that was just coming out of 28-day. We later found out that the cell was giving bad readings causing the engines to be mis-calibrated. When we placed them in the aircraft, our instruments said that they were faulty. The F-35 is a sweet airplane. I have had a chance to look all through it and I know some of the people who are getting it ready for service. They all say that it is one of the easiest aircraft that they have ever had to work on, but, I'll bet that if you ask them, I'm sure that they will agree that if they lose access to spare parts, it will make a nice static display. The ramp at PAX River NAS is one thing, a pitching carrier deck 1200 miles North of the Arctic Circle is another. This is not criticism of the F-35, it is criticism of the system that will be supporting it when it deploys. Enough people have tried unsuccessfully to kill this aircraft's production, I hope that they don't use the supply system to finally do it.
edit on 19-11-2012 by JIMC5499 because: typo



posted on Nov, 19 2012 @ 04:38 PM
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reply to post by JIMC5499
 


Oh, I know, we had the same problems with some of our birds. But the nice thing about the -35 is that you aren't going to need the specialized tools, and equipment that you will need for the F-22. You won't have to worry about taking the RAM off sending it to a special shop for repair, and then reapply it like with the F-22 and B-2.

I'm sure that if there was an interdiction then they'd be looking at starting to hurt, but from what I've read so far, the reliability for the -35A in the testing program has been surprisingly high.

Both the Air Force, and a test pilot involved in the Eurofighter test program, flew the F-18, was around the F-16 development, and watched the F-22, and he says that the aircraft is unheard of in the reliability levels they're getting. He said he flew AF-20 twice in one day, with three hours between flights, and at the end of the second flight everything worked exactly the same as at the start of the first flight. The Air Force says that there is an occasional problem with the jet, but it's usually fixed by a simple shutdown and restart, and in the air they have had very few problems.

f-35.ca...
Flight article



posted on Nov, 19 2012 @ 10:45 PM
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reply to post by Zaphod58
 




An easier way to say it is VMFA(AW)-121, of the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing. I should know, I'm in that Wing. haha
A whole bunch of people from 121 came to mine when they moved to Yuma for the F-35 program. Its not slated to come into service for a while, and the F-18's we currently have are having their lives extended.



posted on Nov, 19 2012 @ 10:54 PM
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reply to post by c_sautter
 


I wasn't sure how they were going to abbreviate it. This is the first time I've ever seen that designation, but that makes it much easier to say.






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