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Again, very rarely in Europe is the choice in favor of actual capability.

The German Air Force is literally as worthless as tits on a bull.


I hear ya but I do follow their logic in preservation of an industrial capability (to build their own) versus being dependent wholly or partially on the US.
Just the execution of that theory needs work apparently.
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Here's my input to the "great debate"... I admit that if I had a choice, an A-10 (or A-10-like) capability for a CAS mission would usually be my first choice in a survivable environment. However,

It could hover over the top of the armor with its deck melting engine.

There is so much info people don’t know, nor will they ever.

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On 7/10/2017 at 6:27 PM, Clark Griswold said:

Then I'm betting AL and WI


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Looks like you take the money

 

http://www.montgomeryadvertiser.com/story/news/local/f35/2017/12/21/its-ours-f-35-lands-montgomery-decision/747285001/

 

I heard Wisconsin was the other unit selected. I'm too lazy to verify

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12 minutes ago, HerkFE said:

Looks like you take the money

http://www.montgomeryadvertiser.com/story/news/local/f35/2017/12/21/its-ours-f-35-lands-montgomery-decision/747285001/

I heard Wisconsin was the other unit selected. I'm too lazy to verify

Yup - WI was the other state.

http://www.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/1402425/af-selects-locations-for-next-two-air-national-guard-f-35-bases/

Glad to see the Militia get some new iron.

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Keeping up with F-35 news, Israel is looking at further mods and getting a single example test jet for development:

http://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zone/10665/israel-is-getting-a-single-f-35-test-jet-unlike-any-other

More fuel, option of overriding ALIS, additional weapons for the internal bays, etc... 

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Word in my neck of the woods is that the F-35 has some serious fuel onload problems. Specifically, the A-model only onloads fuel at about he same rate as a drogue receiver due to its restrictive AAR plumbing design. Even worse, the B-model doesn’t have external tanks approved yet??  This means that they can’t fly to remote destinations (e.g. Hawaii) because they simply don’t have the legs to get to a missed refueling base. 

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On 7/10/2017 at 2:27 PM, Clark Griswold said:

Then I'm betting AL and WI

Nailed it!  Out of curiosity, what made you pick those locations?  Montgomery I get, they have access to over water ranges and are close to other 5th Gen assets.  However, I can't understand WI at all.  They're airspace isn't very good and you have to juke and jive around noise sensitive areas to get to initial (funny enough, much like VT).  Last time I was there, you couldn't even do patterns due to noise complaints.  

I have no desire to fly the 35 and even if my squadron had been on the list, I would have done everything possible to stick with the Viper until retirement.  They want 3 years full time, after a TX, for that thing...good luck getting that out of your part timers.  Anyway, there are a few other squadrons that make so much more sense than WI.  I shouldn't be surprised, tactical considerations be damned, politics clearly with the day.

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1 hour ago, SocialD said:

Nailed it!  Out of curiosity, what made you pick those locations?  Montgomery I get, they have access to over water ranges and are close to other 5th Gen assets.  However, I can't understand WI at all.  They're airspace isn't very good and you have to juke and jive around noise sensitive areas to get to initial (funny enough, much like VT).  Last time I was there, you couldn't even do patterns due to noise complaints.  

I have no desire to fly the 35 and even if my squadron had been on the list, I would have done everything possible to stick with the Viper until retirement.  They want 3 years full time, after a TX, for that thing...good luck getting that out of your part timers.  Anyway, there are a few other squadrons that make so much more sense than WI.  I shouldn't be surprised, tactical considerations be damned, politics clearly with the day.

Paul Ryan

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1 hour ago, SocialD said:

Nailed it!  Out of curiosity, what made you pick those locations?  Montgomery I get, they have access to over water ranges and are close to other 5th Gen assets.  However, I can't understand WI at all.  They're airspace isn't very good and you have to juke and jive around noise sensitive areas to get to initial (funny enough, much like VT).  Last time I was there, you couldn't even do patterns due to noise complaints.  

I have no desire to fly the 35 and even if my squadron had been on the list, I would have done everything possible to stick with the Viper until retirement.  They want 3 years full time, after a TX, for that thing...good luck getting that out of your part timers.  Anyway, there are a few other squadrons that make so much more sense than WI.  I shouldn't be surprised, tactical considerations be damned, politics clearly with the day.

You're smarter than that, why put a gen 5 fighter WAY UP NORTH.

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5 hours ago, Runr6730 said:

Word in my neck of the woods is that the F-35 has some serious fuel onload problems. Specifically, the A-model only onloads fuel at about he same rate as a drogue receiver due to its restrictive AAR plumbing design. Even worse, the B-model doesn’t have external tanks approved yet??  This means that they can’t fly to remote destinations (e.g. Hawaii) because they simply don’t have the legs to get to a missed refueling base. 

 

On the 35B

1. Flight testing for clearance will happen. It’s not like the guys in the VX squadrons are done with the plane. It’s not like they haven’t flown the thing with tanks on and discovered it’s unsafe and needs a redesign. 

2. Compare the 35 to the plane the Marines replace with it (Harrier). A clean F-35 without tanks isn’t going to have much issue outranging even a ferry configured AV-8B. 

3. https://www.stripes.com/news/16-high-tech-f-35b-stealth-fighters-now-deployed-to-japan-1.498071

the Marines just self deployed to Japan so the idea that it’s stuck in one place until it gets those tanks sounds more like 35 haters talking smack than reality.

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4 hours ago, Lawman said:

 

On the 35B

1. Flight testing for clearance will happen. It’s not like the guys in the VX squadrons are done with the plane. It’s not like they haven’t flown the thing with tanks on and discovered it’s unsafe and needs a redesign. 

2. Compare the 35 to the plane the Marines replace with it (Harrier). A clean F-35 without tanks isn’t going to have much issue outranging even a ferry configured AV-8B. 

3. https://www.stripes.com/news/16-high-tech-f-35b-stealth-fighters-now-deployed-to-japan-1.498071

the Marines just self deployed to Japan so the idea that it’s stuck in one place until it gets those tanks sounds more like 35 haters talking smack than reality.

Still disappointed we didn't just opt to buy As and Cs and leave the B completely out of the project.

I don't know anyone who has placed B > C when they've put in their request for TX.

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1 hour ago, VMFA187 said:

Still disappointed we didn't just opt to buy As and Cs and leave the B completely out of the project.

I don't know anyone who has placed B > C when they've put in their request for TX.

You can thank congress for folding a 4.5 gen Harrier replacement in with everybody else’s program. No doubt the 35 would have been an entirely different aircraft without that funky VSTOL requirement. 

 

That said, the Marines screwed themselves walking away from the Rhino. That left them with no bargining room at the tribal council except, give Lockheed whateve they want because we are all in on 35. Still you can’t seriously say that though better stuff shoulda/coulda/mighthave... from the crowd of AV and F/A guys looking at what the 35B will be in a couple years you’ve gotta admit you are getting a whole lot more plane. Unless you’re a two anchor guy, because then you are getting the shaft.

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1 hour ago, BFM this said:

“Self deployed”?  As in island hopped/Alaska tour?

Ok? If you were to tell any pointy nose state side aircraft unit go across the worlds largest body of water and not have or want to allocate a tanker chain to tow them across what would they do? If you can get C-12s into Afghanistan without taking them apart and stuffing them into the belly of a C-17, getting the 35 somewhere isn’t the impossibility it’s critics would make this out to be. 

Park a boat or boats for plane guard if you have to for the CRM aspect, if we needed to put 35B’s on Hawaii or Wake or some other far and away isolated location it’s entirely possible to do it. This isn’t the first aircraft with a set of challenges it’s planners have to work around to make the mission happen. That’s every aircraft. And like I said, it’s not like wing tanks aren’t in the works for approval. 

For the major part part of the forest being missed through the trees... Critics on this point need to answer what is the more likely scenario where a COCOM is screaming for more into their theatre of responsibility to fight a major peer threat? Is it getting 35Bs to Japan in a NK/China scenario or is it to Hawaii or Wake Island or some other far flung off location in the middle of nowhere to fight a giant ocean borne lizard rising out of the sea? Isolated remote locations outside of exercise participation aren’t necessarily the place I’d want to be generating lines for the ATO out of in a real shooting war. 

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1 hour ago, Lawman said:

Ok? If you were to tell any pointy nose state side aircraft unit go across the worlds largest body of water and not have or want to allocate a tanker chain to tow them across what would they do? If you can get C-12s into Afghanistan without taking them apart and stuffing them into the belly of a C-17, getting the 35 somewhere isn’t the impossibility it’s critics would make this out to be. 

Park a boat or boats for plane guard if you have to for the CRM aspect, if we needed to put 35B’s on Hawaii or Wake or some other far and away isolated location it’s entirely possible to do it. This isn’t the first aircraft with a set of challenges it’s planners have to work around to make the mission happen. That’s every aircraft. And like I said, it’s not like wing tanks aren’t in the works for approval. 

For the major part part of the forest being missed through the trees... Critics on this point need to answer what is the more likely scenario where a COCOM is screaming for more into their theatre of responsibility to fight a major peer threat? Is it getting 35Bs to Japan in a NK/China scenario or is it to Hawaii or Wake Island or some other far flung off location in the middle of nowhere to fight a giant ocean borne lizard rising out of the sea? Isolated remote locations outside of exercise participation aren’t necessarily the place I’d want to be generating lines for the ATO out of in a real shooting war. 

So, then...yes.

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13 hours ago, SocialD said:

Nailed it!  Out of curiosity, what made you pick those locations?  Montgomery I get, they have access to over water ranges and are close to other 5th Gen assets.  However, I can't understand WI at all.  They're airspace isn't very good and you have to juke and jive around noise sensitive areas to get to initial (funny enough, much like VT).  Last time I was there, you couldn't even do patterns due to noise complaints.  

I have no desire to fly the 35 and even if my squadron had been on the list, I would have done everything possible to stick with the Viper until retirement.  They want 3 years full time, after a TX, for that thing...good luck getting that out of your part timers.  Anyway, there are a few other squadrons that make so much more sense than WI.  I shouldn't be surprised, tactical considerations be damned, politics clearly with the day.

Picked AL because:

-Sen. Richard Shelby (Senate Appropriations Subcommittee for Defense) & Sen. Jeff Sessions (Former member of Senate Armed Services Committee)

-Proximity to Eglin/Duke/Hurby/Tyndall for training/testing opportunities with SOF & 4/5 gen assets (Warning Areas over the Gulf are a plus too)

-Montgomery's F-16s are nearing the end of their service lives and moving on to the next big thing makes sense versus recap via new 16s or SLEPs

Picked WI because:

-Speaker Paul Ryan

-WI is a state in play and the Rs are fighting hard to keep it red

-There are some training opportunities (LFEs) in the Northern Tier CONUS that a 5th gen asset would be nice to have (probably a small consideration but a legitimate point)

 

Can you get a bonus for the 3 years? 

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6 hours ago, VMFA187 said:

Still disappointed we didn't just opt to buy As and Cs and leave the B completely out of the project.

I don't know anyone who has placed B > C when they've put in their request for TX.

If the USMC had opt'd for a folding wing C model vice a VSTOL B, do you think they would have pushed for new smaller carriers capable of amphibious ops support (well decks) and CATOBAR air ops?

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16 hours ago, Lawman said:

You can thank congress for folding a 4.5 gen Harrier replacement in with everybody else’s program. No doubt the 35 would have been an entirely different aircraft without that funky VSTOL requirement. 

 

That said, the Marines screwed themselves walking away from the Rhino. That left them with no bargining room at the tribal council except, give Lockheed whateve they want because we are all in on 35. Still you can’t seriously say that though better stuff shoulda/coulda/mighthave... from the crowd of AV and F/A guys looking at what the 35B will be in a couple years you’ve gotta admit you are getting a whole lot more plane. Unless you’re a two anchor guy, because then you are getting the shaft.

No argument there. We would've prevented the massive decrease in flight hours across the board in the TacAir community which has occurred since 2012 if we had purchased the Rhino as a stop-gap - Could have picked up some additional nice capabilities as well. We went all in with the F-35 and the Marine fighter community is getting absolutely decimated with retention issues because of the resultant delays. I know the AF has their issues, but if you combine all those with the fact that dudes are flying four to six times a month on top of all the other "Every Marine a rifleman" garbage and its not hard to understand why dudes don't want to do this anymore, or at least in this uniform.

Concur, the F-35 does provide us a significant increase in capabilities... As should a plane that is decades newer than the ones it is replacing. It just could've been "more" without VSTOL.

11 hours ago, Clark Griswold said:

If the USMC had opt'd for a folding wing C model vice a VSTOL B, do you think they would have pushed for new smaller carriers capable of amphibious ops support (well decks) and CATOBAR air ops?

Doubtful. I don't think the USMC has nearly enough influence on the Navy for that. That being said, there is an advantage that will hopefully never be realized in having the ability to stage fifth gen assets on something other than just the big deck carriers with VSTOL when our adversaries are proliferating ASBMs like the DF-21/26.

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14 minutes ago, VMFA187 said:

Doubtful. I don't think the USMC has nearly enough influence on the Navy for that. That being said, there is an advantage that will hopefully never be realized in having the ability to stage fifth gen assets on something other than just the big deck carriers with VSTOL when our adversaries are proliferating ASBMs like the DF-21/26.

I doubt Marine leadership would think any differently than Army leadership when it comes to getting more and employing on a wider envelope when it comes to Aviation. The idea of going to the table to fight for a small deck carrier wouldn’t even rate discussion over spending the time arguing about getting a new rifle or artillery or some other toy for the service chief level people. 

Kinda like how Army Aviation poured all this money into getting Apache on to Link-16 and putting drones into the Aviation Brigade but there is no way in hell the bullet heads in charge would ever change our ownership model to allow us to actually plan and coordinate and exercise it where it’s at all useful. 

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12 hours ago, Clark Griswold said:

-There are some training opportunities (LFEs) in the Northern Tier CONUS that a 5th gen asset would be nice to have (probably a small consideration but a legitimate point)

 

Can you get a bonus for the 3 years? 

If they want me full time, I'll need a 80k+/yr bonus.  Aside from that, a TX is the last thing I want to do at this point in my career.  Also, being full time blows!  

Wrt northern teir LFE opportunities, the only upside to Volk complex is that it's range is right in the center of the airspace and it's relatively close to MSN.  Other than that it's kinda of a restrictive airspace.  Selfridge seems like a much better fit for that.  The Alpena complex is massive and has much better airspace.

For those who haven't operated out of Alpena, it's actually a pretty awesome place in the spring-fall.  Plus, The River Club!!!  If those walls could talk...  

But who am I kidding, politics win the day every time.  

 

*Not a Selfridge guy.  

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1 hour ago, SocialD said:

If they want me full time, I'll need a 80k+/yr bonus.  Aside from that, a TX is the last thing I want to do at this point in my career.  Also, being full time blows!  

Wrt northern teir LFE opportunities, the only upside to Volk complex is that it's range is right in the center of the airspace and it's relatively close to MSN.  Other than that it's kinda of a restrictive airspace.  Selfridge seems like a much better fit for that.  The Alpena complex is massive and has much better airspace.

For those who haven't operated out of Alpena, it's actually a pretty awesome place in the spring-fall.  Plus, The River Club!!!  If those walls could talk...  

But who am I kidding, politics win the day every time.  

*Not a Selfridge guy.  

Copy that.  

I remember the joys of the Norther Tier in the winter and while it would not be pleasant to be in the exercise, a combined arms LFE would be an important learning opportunity for the joint force.  Just after I retire ;-) I kid I kid...

2 hours ago, VMFA187 said:

Doubtful. I don't think the USMC has nearly enough influence on the Navy for that. That being said, there is an advantage that will hopefully never be realized in having the ability to stage fifth gen assets on something other than just the big deck carriers with VSTOL when our adversaries are proliferating ASBMs like the DF-21/26.

Gotcha

IDK, VSTOL is impressive but I am just doubtful of it when you look at the cost in dollars and performance over the whole of airpower strategy (be it naval or conventionally land based).  Numerous smaller carriers using conventional fixed wing aircraft seems more bang for the buck and less problematic.  

Don't get me wrong, VSTOL fighters have proven themselves (ref Falklands War) but overall it seems to me like variable sweep wings, cool technology but not worth the trouble in today's operational environment.

FA on smaller carriers:

https://foxtrotalpha.jalopnik.com/americas-carrier-gap-crisis-highlights-a-need-for-sma-1740644946

___________________________

More F-35 news:

SK may buy another 20

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-southkorea-usa-airforce/south-korea-plans-to-buy-20-additional-f-35-aircraft-report-idUSKBN1EF051?il=0

 

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1 hour ago, Clark Griswold said:

IDK, VSTOL is impressive but I am just doubtful of it when you look at the cost in dollars and performance over the whole of airpower strategy (be it naval or conventionally land based).  Numerous smaller carriers using conventional fixed wing aircraft seems more bang for the buck and less problematic.  

Don't get me wrong, VSTOL fighters have proven themselves (ref Falklands War) but overall it seems to me like variable sweep wings, cool technology but not worth the trouble in today's operational environment.

 

I agree with you. Its not worth the cost when you evaluate what you must give up for VSTOL capability. But it does give you some nice flexibility in very specific circumstances.

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4 hours ago, VMFA187 said:

I agree with you. Its not worth the cost when you evaluate what you must give up for VSTOL capability. But it does give you some nice flexibility in very specific circumstances.

You guys are the very specific service.

honestly I’m all for anything that keeps smaller (read less capable) carriers out of the structure. It would be the same kind of confused self justification to essentially gut the real capability that the Naval strike arm brings in with a big nuclear carrier. The Midways and other non nuclear carriers did that all through the big money Reagan days. To the people holding the purse strings they don’t want to hear arguments on number of sorties it can make, operational times without refuel, etc, they just see a flat top boat with aircraft on it and think a carrier is a carrier. Never mind you had a couple carriers that would have been bringing F-4s and A-7s instead of Tomcats or fully laden Intruders and calling them equal when it was time to pay for it all. To some an LHA is a “carrier” which is just laughable (unless it’s the America which gets no other option).

Small deck boats mixed with big boats just make that way too easy to find ourselves in a similar position to the Brits or French thinking “how did we get here?” People like to point at the Falklands as an arguement that small deck can still do the job. What they ignore about that is had it not been for the Courageous sinking the Belgrano and scaring the Argentine Carrier back into port that task force would have come under a hell of a lot worse than what it saw and wouldn’t have had a counter punch too it. It also would would have gone far differently had a heck of a lot more Strike power had the British had even 1 ship in its fleet comparable to any of our 80k+ ton full size carriers.

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5 hours ago, VMFA187 said:

I agree with you. Its not worth the cost when you evaluate what you must give up for VSTOL capability. But it does give you some nice flexibility in very specific circumstances.

Yup - can't argue that VSTOL can give you high flexibility in logistics.  Brits were going to use converted cargo ships for RAF Harriers in the Falklands War to augment the RN Sea Harriers.  

Atlantic Conveyor launched her Harriers prior to being attacked and it was not a bad plan to quickly increase the landing deck capacity of the British Task Force.

http://aviationintel.com/sea-basings-ancestor-the-forgotten-commercial-freighter-aircraft-carriers-of-the-falklands-war/

http://www.thinkdefence.co.uk/2012/04/the-atlantic-conveyor-falklands30/

3 minutes ago, Lawman said:

You guys are the very specific service.

honestly I’m all for anything that keeps smaller (read less capable) carriers out of the structure. It would be the same kind of confused self justification to essentially gut the real capability that the Naval strike arm brings in with a big nuclear carrier. The Midways and other non nuclear carriers did that all through the big money Reagan days. To the people holding the purse strings they don’t want to hear arguments on number of sorties it can make, operational times without refuel, etc, they just see a flat top boat with aircraft on it and think a carrier is a carrier. Never mind you had a couple carriers that would have been bringing F-4s and A-7s instead of Tomcats or fully laden Intruders and calling them equal when it was time to pay for it all. To some an LHA is a “carrier” which is just laughable (unless it’s the America which gets no other option).

Small deck boats mixed with big boats just make that way too easy to find ourselves in a similar position to the Brits or French thinking “how did we get here?” People like to point at the Falklands as an arguement that small deck can still do the job. What they ignore about that is had it not been for the Courageous sinking the Belgrano and scaring the Argentine Carrier back into port that task force would have come under a hell of a lot worse than what it saw and wouldn’t have had a counter punch too it. It also would would have gone far differently had a heck of a lot more Strike power had the British had even 1 ship in its fleet comparable to any of our 80k+ ton full size carriers.

Good points but to home in on one for debate "that small deck can still do the job" - the cost of the small deck is lower, that it really is that several small decks can get the job done (and overall be cheaper than an all big deck nuclear fleet) and then be less expensive to own/operate when you don't have the need to generate / concentrate naval air power, you break down and have an ability to cover a great number of areas

Hi / Lo mix - some big decks some little decks (sts)

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