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Steve Davies

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Everything posted by Steve Davies

  1. For the uninitiated, can someone explain why a formation approach is any more/less risky than formation aerobatics or formation flying in wx? I get that proximity to the ground is a big consideration, but is there anything else that is inherently different about it?
  2. Thanks for the considered post. I don't agree with the assessment that a 5-10 year capability gap existed between the F-111 and the Tornado. The Tornado IDS was on par with the F-111E (operating in Northern Iraq out of Incirlik) in terms of capabilities. These 1-11s dropped at night from medium altitude, alone and without ever seeing many of their targets (and they weren't running against Saddam's airfields, either). I am not sure how effective they were, but as one of the guys who there recently told me, "no one really cared about what we were doing". As for the F-111F with its PGM capability, they still went in low against airfields and other targets in the opening nights. So, they chose the exact same tactics. Sure, they didn't overfly the runways, but I think I have already established was not the cause of the initial Tornado losses. In fact, the F-models were extremely lucky not to eclipse the Tornado force's losses - three of them were badly damaged by AAA on night one. The F-15E, which had a PGM capability, went in low for the first couple of nights. One was downed by AAA on night one. At the time, it was the newest MDS in the Air Force inventory and was, in the same way as you characterise the IDS, optimised for a European conflict. But the capability gap didn't stop the same tactics being chosen... The F-16 had no PGM capability (some squadrons with LANTIRN did, but they were in the monitory), and they went in at medium altitude and dropped dumb bombs without any idea whether they were going to hit the target. So, no, not convinced that capabilities explain the disparity between sortie numbers and loss rates.
  3. Hmm. Only one Tornado was lost on a JP233 mission and that was actually on the egress and several miles from the runway. IIRC, only two others were lost at low level - neither of which flew down any runway. A balanced view of the performance of the Tornado in ODS is that it did well. It certainly held its own against other strikers in theater, including F-15E, F-111, F-16, Jaguar, A-6, A-7 etc.
  4. Hmm. I like Eddie Murphy a lot. His stand up comedy is brilliant. The original Coming to America was funny and a little edgy ("You may now clean the Royal penis") but that trailer makes the sequel look dull and potentially just a little woke.
  5. Thanks, DARPA Emailed you, but you can get me direct here: editor@10percenttrue.com
  6. Well, that would be a happy coincidence, but the truth is that I don't remember - pretty sure we didn't meet.
  7. If anyone knows how to get in touch with Robert Sweet, former A-10 pilot and former 476th FS/CC, can you PM me? Looking to do a story on Steve "Syph" Phillis.
  8. There's one for MX folk, but to join you have to answer questions about HYD systems and tyre pressures! Couldn't find anything for aircrew, but it was a good idea.
  9. This is a really long shot, and I apologise for the cryptic nature of it, but... Does anyone know MAC C-5 crewmembers who flew classified missions through the 1970s? Probably part of a unit whose mission included supporting AFSC and CIA. I would imagine it was a tight-knit community, but I don't know anyone who was part of it. Specifically, I am looking to speak to a crew who flew into Egypt on 21 Sept 1977. TIA
  10. Some questions for any Eagle drivers who feel able to comment: c.270 hours of total time, and only 60 or so in the Eagle. Is that enough for what was being asked of him? There's no mention of JHMCS, so I assume he was not wearing it. Why not? And had he been, does it give substantial SA cues that might have given him a chance to recover earlier? Hard deck of 4,000' seems very low, especially given the WX. Is that standard? He pulled just over 8gs to recover. Presumably, had he thought he was going to hit the sea, he would have pulled as many as he could - was the limit therefore his technique, or simply a function of what the jet could give him at 570 knots?
  11. The article contains an interesting line: "[the idea that there is a link] between a football game and patriotism of the country does seem a bit disjointed". It's called American Football. How much more concrete of a link could you ask for?
  12. Happy birthday, Air Force! (the detail-driven folks at Dover have obviously been enlisted to help our the DoS).
  13. It’s irrelevant as to whether the Russian/Chinese FLANKERS are on an American military unit emblem because of a mistake or because or regulation. What matters is that it makes you look stooopid. Surely it’s someone’s job in the Air Force to give a shit about that, even if it does mean having to know your arse from your elbow?
  14. That's an interesting observation. I thought longer was better (STS), but perhaps I need to chop the interview up a bit more. Glad you enjoyed it. Huggy, thank you for giving me your time and trust. Thanks also for being forgiving of my belated understanding of the difference between Z and BST! Yes, Part 2 will be out in two weeks, and then there'll be the concluding AMA/Part 3.
  15. Many of you will know Huggy, so he needs no introduction here. Here’s Part 1 of my interview with him, released to coincide with the 65th anniversary of the U-2’s first flight.
  16. Anyone know whether there is a viewing area at Mildenhall. Tried to find one today, but the old one seems to have been removed.
  17. I hear ya. I imagine that if you don't hear these accents all the time, the sort of blend into one another - an unintelligible mess. I wonder whether your mam likes Rab C Nesbit. It's fun to watch some with the YouTube captions enabled to see just how badly it 'translates' his speech:
  18. None of the guys in that video is Scottish. Do you mean Paddy (the tall one?). He has a Lancashire accent.
  19. Somebody who did an F-15S exchange tour once told me that one of the Saudi pilots had taken hard copies of the -34-1-1-1 and 3-1 to Kinkos and left them there to be scanned onto a thumbdrive... so that he could have the manuals on his computer at home. Apparently, this was just one incident in a long line of incidents of this sort, and the RSAF (and DoD!) did nothing about it. I get that there's a balance between selling hardware to gain access to oil, and resigning yourself to the fact that some of your secrets are going to get out as part of that process, but I don't understand for a second why you would take that risk with the F-35. I hope the partner nations speak up on this.
  20. Tough to beat Brick's briefing, but two that standout to me: 1. RAF test pilot. "If we have to eject, I'll call EJECT! EJECT! EJECT! and you should pull the handle. If you haven't gone by the third time I've said it, the words EJECT! are written on the bottom of my boots, and you'll be able to read them as my seat leaves the aircraft". And an altogether different tact: 2. USAF test pilot. "If we have to eject today, you are going to die. You'll break your elbows on the canopy sill and will drown in the sea because you won't be able to swim or get in your raft. I will try and swim over to you, but because you'll leave the jet first and are heavier than me, you will enter the sea before I will. Questions?".
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