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Everything posted by Hacker

  1. Not completely true, at least in figher canopies. The canopy is not polarized, per se, so unlike when you look at an LCD display or a truly polarized item, it does not go black or gray or anything that "completely blocks" vision. Instead with polarized glasses the canopy does have a prismatic rainbow effect, which does distort the picture and, in some case, prohibit you from seeing through it.
  2. I am not sure of any reg or AFI saying that, but if you step out to the flightline and look at the jet you'll know why it's not smart to wear polarized sunglasses. The material that the canopies are made of (at least on T-38s and F-15s) have a wicked rainbow effect when viewed through polarized sunglasses, and that really tends to distort what you see when looking through them. Once in the cockpit, there are similar effects with some instruments. In the F-15E, the EMD and UFC could be totally blacked out by polarization, and in the T-38C the same is true with the EED. Bottom line is that you shouldn't wear them while flying.
  3. By your logic, then, all the F-15Cs need to be re-designated T-15Cs or something because they never fired a shot in anger during OEF or OIF, either. As for killing "bogeys," I did not shoot down any MiGs using air-to-air ordnance. I did, however, destroy some MiGs and Sukhois on the ground at Al Taqqadum airfield. In fact, my squadron destroyed upwards of 60 MiGs on the ground between the two bases at Al Taq and Balad SE. That mission was called OCA-INT, or Offensive Counter Air -- Interdiction, on the ATO. So, by the letter of the law, during an OCA sortie we employed ordnance to destroy MiGs. Of course, whenever I tell this to a Light Gray, he scoffs, but so be it (I just ask him to show me the tape of him destroying a MiG!). Back in WWII, ground kills were credited just as much as air kills were (but were not eligible to create your first 5 victories). As far as "just flying into a combat zone" during OIF, I chucked plenty of metal at the Iraqi dirt and took some armor, artillery, and buildings out with it. I wasn't just going from point A to point B looking out for SAMs and AAA. You know, I do have to say that in reading Huey Pilot's discussions here and on the other board about flying into Iraq in the Lear are pretty interesting. While I do think the concept "Combat Learjet" is pretty funny (and sorry, Chris, but I would laugh at that patch in the bar too), I have to admit that if I were tooling around without an RWR or any kind of countermeasures it would make me a little nervous. I'll stop short of saying "you guys have got guts...", though. Why? Well, I'm pretty sure the C-21 pilots probably don't think about it too much...they don't contemplate turning their airplane around and going home because it's too hostile of an environment; they just go do their job like they're supposed to, the same as a fighter guy or a airlift guy does in similar circumstances. Flying in an airplane more suited for combat doesn't make your stomach turn any less the minute you cross the fence (of course, do lifters and OSA guys FENCE in? heh heh), it just makes you more able to deal with something if it does happen. Look, guys...nobody LIKES flying into combat. While there is a certain excitement and adrenaline high associated with it that many people really like (and is impossible to replicate in training or peacetime), the actual act of getting shot at is HIGHLY over-rated. I love my job immensely, but if you tankers, lifters, HVAAs, and OSA guys wanna go get shot at that bad, more power to you. The difference is that I get to shoot back!
  4. Hmmm, guess I'd better go erase from my logbook those DCA sorties I flew during OSW and the OCA I flew during Iraqi Freedom. Apparently they never happened, huh?
  5. Okay, guys, I think that there needs some clarification on this issue of the Dollar Ride. The idea behind the tradition of giving your instructor a dollar is that you're supposed to be paying your IP for his chauffeur services during the flight. That only happens on your first Tweet/T-6 ride where there is exactly *nothing* that a student is graded on -- the overall grade for the sortie must, by the syllabus, be "NG". On every other first flight in every other aircraft (at least in my experiences in the T-38, F-15E, and T-38C), the gradesheet requires some kind of performance and some kind of grading (again, this may be different in the T-ONE). Hence, the student is working for a living, and not just letting the IP give him a ride. No dollar to be paid...the student is earning his own way. That being said, in T-38s I made a $ for the guy I flew my first White Rocket Flight with -- TORO! I don't think everyone did that, though, and it certainly wasn't as big of a deal as it was it Tweets. So, the only real dollar ride -- regardless of what people call it -- is your first ride in SUPT, and not simply the first flight in any aircraft type. [ 16 December 2003, 05:02: Message edited by: Hacker ]
  6. Curt Brown, former fighter pilot, astronaut, and L-39 air race pilot, said precisely the same thing when I asked him what it was like to fly and race -- that the Albatros was a baby step between the Tweet and T-38.
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