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OT: F-35 lightning II

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Russia's new missile jammer may actually significantly effect the max range we can engage targets. Unless we get some new missiles the engagement range will be a lot shorter than our established tactics planned for.

http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2014/12/04/pentagon-worries-that-russia-can-now-outshoot-u-s-stealth-jets.html

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The f35 is a piece of junk that has been designed as a jack of all trades master of none and is outclassed by CURRENT Russian aircraft let alone future Russian fighters

Agreed, we had the F-22 but Uncle Sam said hey this one is cheaper lets go with this piece of crap.

 

One thing I learned in the military new stuff doesn't mean better, it just mean that the government has found a lower bidder.

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Something funny about the Stealth and Speed discussion when it concerns the F-22; some of the stuff I've read said that the XF-22's competitor, the XF-23, actually performed better in those two areas but lost the contract because it wasn't as maneuverable. 

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That is accurate, due to engine design the XF-23 was not expected to be able to perform off-vector maneuvering like the F-22 nor be as capable at STOL operations, but those same design choices gave the XF-23 the edge in speed and stealth.  Your point is especially pertinent considering the recent discussion about dog fighting.  :-)  

 

Another reason is that Northrup/Grumman did not have the robust upgrade/development schedule worked out as well as Lockheed did, including development of follow on platforms like the F-35.  Also, Lockheed was much more powerful politically, they were better able to secure the contract by "spreading the wealth" among states with influential senators more effectively than Northrup/Grumman.  The last is an annoying but nonetheless real part of how things get done, but in this case it appears that the better plane won the competition despite the politics.

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Lockwit: You have some interesting opinions on the country, tactics, and weapons. Just out of curiosity, would you happen to have any combat experience? Your comments come off like they were learned in the call of duty forum.

I'm overweight, unemployed and 22, what do you think? As for CoD stuff ew I'm not that bad.

So you are forming some of those opinions on no experience. I'm referring to the hardware stuff. The order tips I certainly don't agree with much of what you have said but that's fine. Age and experience have a way of I influencing the positions of youth.

Hey, I never claimed to have combat / personal experience with these weapons, did I?

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The newly-revealed Chinese knockoff is far inferior even to the F-35, but that's hardly the point. The Chinese can manufacture and deploy cheap fighters en masse in a manner that would quickly overwhelm a defending force of F-35. I have a feeling there will be more programs greenlit to breathe new life into our fourth-gen fighters.

Do you have a source for the inferiority of the J-31?

http://www.ibtimes.com/chinas-new-stealth-fighter-jet-can-take-down-american-counterpart-developer-says-1753916

http://news.usni.org/2014/11/05/u-s-pilots-say-new-chinese-stealth-fighter-become-equal-f-22-f-35

I'm pretty sure the J-31 will surpass the F-35 by the time it's fielded. I cannot back up my statements besides to point to articles - I'm not a pilot.

I don't see anything on any nation's horizon that can match the F-22. Although the F-22 isn't invincible, and has lost dogfights:

http://www.flightglobal.com/blogs/the-dewline/2009/02/growler-power-ea-18g-boasts-f-/

http://www.wired.com/2007/07/first-f-22-rapt/

http://www.realcleardefense.com/articles/2014/09/23/when_the_french_shot_down_an_f-22_107455.html

 

 

 

Granted I'm not a pilot either, although until there are pilots with combat experience against these Chinese planes in particular, that's a moot point. Right now all anyone can do is take what we learn and compare it to what we already know. I've been a military aircraft fanatic for 30 years. It's one of my primary interests, so I am confident enough in my understanding. 
 
The analysis of the airframes suggests neither craft will be particularly stealthy. It's been suggested the radar-absorbant materials are either missing or improperly applied. It's still not certain whether either craft will have AESA radar; if they don't, they will be at a significant disadvantage. They also lack thrust vectoring, the importance of which Kinetic did a great job explaining above.
 
Most critically, it's believed that both J-20 and J-31 were reverse-engineered from known and documented cyber attacks. Notably, the systems that weren't compromised are missing from the Chinese designs. They have allegedly stolen much of Lockheed Martin's work on the F-35, applied that to the design, then cobbled together the rest. That's consistent with what the industry analysts are seeing. 
 
But even aside from that, the simple fact that after the F-22 came out, China produced one that looked just like it (or an F-22/Gen-4 mashup), then again with the F-35 (or an F-35/22 mashup). That's not coincidence, man; that's espionage.
 
In any case, like I said earlier in the thread, neither design needs to match the performance of the F-22 or F-35. Even if the new fighters have AESA and skilled pilots (which isn't guaranteed in either case), all they need is to be able to field more of them than their opponent. If they're not hamstrung on supply issues (currently they're depending on Russia to provide surplus MiG-29 engines for the J-31), then they sort of have the upper hand. Spam the enemy with cheap fighters, rinse, repeat.
 
I'm also not an F-35 apologist, while I think they could make a decent thing out of it someday, I'm aware of the myriad development and logistic issues. Time will tell on that one.
 
 
Further info on FC/J-31:
 
 

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I wouldn't be too worried about any new gear the Russians come up with, like that jammer. The Ruskies don't have a good track record with high performance anything.

I recall when we were going to liberate Kuwait and then move to Iraq. The T80 was new and wet honestly did not know what to expect. Our Intel was that it was superior to the Abrams in all things. We were seriously worried about this new MBT and we existed the Republican Guard to fight to the death. The truth was far from the hype, the T80 was junk and the elite Iraqi forces, not so much elite.

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That is accurate, due to engine design the XF-23 was not expected to be able to perform off-vector maneuvering like the F-22 nor be as capable at STOL operations, but those same design choices gave the XF-23 the edge in speed and stealth. Your point is especially pertinent considering the recent discussion about dog fighting. :-)

Another reason is that Northrup/Grumman did not have the robust upgrade/development schedule worked out as well as Lockheed did, including development of follow on platforms like the F-35. Also, Lockheed was much more powerful politically, they were better able to secure the contract by "spreading the wealth" among states with influential senators more effectively than Northrup/Grumman. The last is an annoying but nonetheless real part of how things get done, but in this case it appears that the better plane won the competition despite the politics.

YF-23. :)

The interesting thing about the YF-23 is you can see the lineage from the B-2 to it. Just like you can see the lineage from the 22 to the 35.

However, I see no lineage from the YF-23 to the X-32. What an ugly ugly ugly seagul.

Edited by Koshinn

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The f35 is a piece of junk that has been designed as a jack of all trades master of none and is outclassed by CURRENT Russian aircraft let alone future Russian fighters

Agreed, we had the F-22 but Uncle Sam said hey this one is cheaper lets go with this piece of crap.

 

One thing I learned in the military new stuff doesn't mean better, it just mean that the government has found a lower bidder.

 

 

The F-35 wasn't selected over the F-22. They were designed from the ground up with different roles, namely: F-22 as an interceptor/fighter, and F-35 as a multirole export fighter. The F-35 is carrier-capable and the loadout is much more diverse than the F-22, although the payload weight capacity is similar.

 

In theory:

 

F-22 > F-15

F-35 > F-16

 

The F-35 is hobbled by development issues. As an export fighter for our allies, it could have essentially paid for itself. The blown-out schedules and cost overruns in development are a reality in any industry, although granted, the government is notorious for amplifying the problems (see: red tape).

 

The lowest bidder analogue is technically correct, but there's a greater context to consider: Even the lowest bidder has a certain amount of criteria that must be met in order to be accepted. Even then, engineering challenges are not out of the ordinary. I mean, I could offer the government all four of my TIE Advanced minis for forty bucks and be considered the lowest bidder, but that's not really how it works, you know?

 

Wait and see, I'd say. Military spending cutbacks are gonna have an astromonically larger impact than any issues the F-35 faces.

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Something funny about the Stealth and Speed discussion when it concerns the F-22; some of the stuff I've read said that the XF-22's competitor, the XF-23, actually performed better in those two areas but lost the contract because it wasn't as maneuverable. 

 

Also, as much as the F-22 deserves its place at the tippy-top of the food chain, I was IN LOVE with the YF-23 Black Widow, and crushed when it wasn't selected. That was a thing of absolute beauty. (It had better supercruise performance than the YF-22 as well.)

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I wouldn't be too worried about any new gear the Russians come up with, like that jammer. The Ruskies don't have a good track record with high performance anything.

I recall when we were going to liberate Kuwait and then move to Iraq. The T80 was new and wet honestly did not know what to expect. Our Intel was that it was superior to the Abrams in all things. We were seriously worried about this new MBT and we existed the Republican Guard to fight to the death. The truth was far from the hype, the T80 was junk and the elite Iraqi forces, not so much elite.

Another good example is that even now most of their tanks aren't equiped with modern NV.

Though the Russians gave the Iraqis monkey models and don't really compare to Russian equipment.

Edited by All Shields Forward

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I wouldn't be too worried about any new gear the Russians come up with, like that jammer. The Ruskies don't have a good track record with high performance anything.

I recall when we were going to liberate Kuwait and then move to Iraq. The T80 was new and wet honestly did not know what to expect. Our Intel was that it was superior to the Abrams in all things. We were seriously worried about this new MBT and we existed the Republican Guard to fight to the death. The truth was far from the hype, the T80 was junk and the elite Iraqi forces, not so much elite.

Another good example is that even now most of their tanks aren't equiped with modern NV.

Though the Russians gave the Iraqis monkey models and don't really compare to Russian equipment.

 

The bonus-side of Russiun equipment is even a monkey can maintain and repair.

And they are rapidly catching up in terms of quality as are the Chinese.

 

The SU-25 is as much a heavy hitting platform as an A-10 and quite comparable in quality.

The SU-35 is a very high quality fighter which in the right hands can outperform an F-15.

 

Mind also all current ejection seats in US Air Force planes are of an originally Russian design. The ones in use in the F-4 and F-14 had a higher risk of severely damaging the users vertebrae.

And one of the earliest copied gadgets from the former USSR was the look-down-shoot-down helmet acquired by the German Luftwaffe after merging with the former Eastern German Air Force. No more pointing your entire plane towards a target, just looking at it and fire away missiles.

 

We tend to see Russian equipment as inferior, but we have only seen it used by armies who used older models and didn´t have much of a maintenance record to begin with.

Edited by Cununculus

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The thing is there is 'not having combat experience against chineses pilots yet'

 

and

 

'having read JANES jet aircraft'

 

and

 

'Being a serving pilot'

 

And a world of difference between the last two ,less between the first two.

 

 

As servicemen we sign the 'official secrets act' in the UK.    There is stuff i *still* cant legally tell you about the capabilities of some of our kit that differs from what you're read about in 'combat nutjob' magazine.

 

The first time I was allowed inside challenger II they were not allowed to switch it on as i was with civilian friends (early 2000s this) and while they could be shown the crew stations they couldnt be seen it working.

 

So the guys on here who are, or have recently been, serving USAF personel probably know a lot more than they can tell you, or *should* tell you on an open forum for security purposes.

 

Its going to sound paranoid but i served in an era where we'd pick up spent casings to stop the enemy recaping and filling them.  The more they knew about us as well the more vulnerable you are.

 

I dislike talking about modern equipment on internet forums for this reason as someone who *may* have heard something they shouldnt of decided to broadcast it to win 'cool points' on the internet and tells someone in beijing something they didnt know before.

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And as for being wound up about having bad kit for US soldiers..

 

mate you want to try a few years in the british army in the 90s

 

we BOUGHT OUR OWN KIT as the issue stuff was so bad.

 

:)

 

Our ballistic bylon MK6 helmet was good, our NBC kit was the best in the world (fetched a good price selling surplus sets to terrified us serivcemen in GW1 allegedly as the us kit was poor and everyone expected a shower of phosgene), our rifles were good and no where near as bad as the media made out but body armour....    i think i wore CBA body armour five times in three years, and it was the early version with no hard plates, just a kevlar jacket.. enough to hold you together til you got to an aid post if you were hit.

 

As others have said, the older style vests are not 'bulletproof'.  they struggle to stop anything  more than 9mm or very 'spent'  rifle rounds at the end of their arc.  Most casualties are caused by artillery (about 70 per cent) and most of those are caused not by the round itself but my 'sub velocity fragments'  (thats bits of fencepost, brick, stones, chunks of car to you and me) thrown up by the blast.   Your armour used to be designed to protect you from that.

 

The hard plates were rifle proof.  Its why some 'cocky' lads painted targets over the plate pocket to encourage someone to shoot that bit :)

 

But its not 'kit' that wins wars.

 

Its the will to fight.

 

The Britsh Army fought a war 3000 miles away in arctic conditions against 10 to 1 odds...   our helicopters were sunk, CIA advisers said 'you cant win, the battle is 70 miles away across marsh and mountain'.....  but we walked there carrying everything with us.  We ran out of ammo so took hills with bayonets. 

 

Out kit was vastly inferior to the argentinians.   We had semi automatic SLRs, they had the full auto version.  We had WWII era ankle boots, they had proper winter boots (which our boys stole when they could find a pair that fittd), they had night sights, we didnt have many.   They had close air support... we had about six flying harriers.

 

The thing was they didnt want to be there, they didnt want to win.  they didnt put out sentries, they didnt patrol.

 

We sent a *very agressive* formation that wanted to win... its the will to win... not what you wear or what you shoot.

 

one word

 

Vietnam....

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You just can't conscript people and expect them to fight hard, sure when they are being shot at they'll do their best to survive but they were forced to be there.

Due to my asthma I couldn't join up or I would of with my mate rab, recruiting officer said it was a shame because I'm a big guy and otherwise would of been a good candidate.

I support the troops even if I don't support the wars they get sent to, angers me no end they are gonna get pulled back into that Iraq mess yet again.

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I get angry when we go into wars fo reasons like 'saddam hussein is torturing the kurds'  (previously he was our best mate, we knew his defensive abilities as we sold him all his kit... the 'republican guard' had british made uniforms... we had to rush out a  new desert one as he bought all the stocks of our old ones, his officers were trained at west point and sandhurst)

 

Then i find out we're 'conducting' our war using the same methods that made it 'essential' to take out saddam becuase he was torturing people who spoke up against him and he considered a security threat.

 

saddam tortured people he considered terrorists and we went to war to stop him using torture and to preserve human dignity and civil rights.... (nothing to do with the oil, honest)....    I see a circle forming here...

Edited by Gadge

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The thing is there is 'not having combat experience against chineses pilots yet'

 

and

 

'having read JANES jet aircraft'

 

and

 

'Being a serving pilot'

 

And a world of difference between the last two ,less between the first two.

 

 

As servicemen we sign the 'official secrets act' in the UK.    There is stuff i *still* cant legally tell you about the capabilities of some of our kit that differs from what you're read about in 'combat nutjob' magazine.

 

The first time I was allowed inside challenger II they were not allowed to switch it on as i was with civilian friends (early 2000s this) and while they could be shown the crew stations they couldnt be seen it working.

 

So the guys on here who are, or have recently been, serving USAF personel probably know a lot more than they can tell you, or *should* tell you on an open forum for security purposes.

 

Its going to sound paranoid but i served in an era where we'd pick up spent casings to stop the enemy recaping and filling them.  The more they knew about us as well the more vulnerable you are.

 

I dislike talking about modern equipment on internet forums for this reason as someone who *may* have heard something they shouldnt of decided to broadcast it to win 'cool points' on the internet and tells someone in beijing something they didnt know before.

 

Just as a matter of record I'm somewhere between "having read JANES" and "serving pilot". Growing up in a household with one serviceman who can speak expertly to the A-10's CAS role, and one contractor having worked extensively on 4th-gen fighter systems and still can't legally tell me about capabilities (but has told me some pretty neat shít regardless).

 

I've lived and breathed this stuff for three decades. At age 12 I could tell you which engines were used on all active US fighter craft. I knew that regarding the F-16 "this is the Viper—only politicians and reporters call it the Falcon" from conversations with real pilots. I watched A-10 live-fire strafing runs from my backyard, noted tactics, maneuverability, capabilities; whatever they were willing to show. Knew the service ceilings and combat radius of most modern craft still active in the 90s and beyond.

 

So, you know. There's a case to be made for non-pilots possibly having some expertise as well. I won't even pretend to know everything—if it's classified, then I'm in the dark (with one or two possible 1980s-era exceptions). But not everyone is simply barfing up soundbytes from CNN :)

 

Also, I totally understand not blowing secrets online, although in the case of the J-20 and J-31 it's a moot point. Heh.

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BV?

 

 

You shouldn't worry too much about the reasons or justifications for any military action, once the politicians decide you are going, it just doesn't matter.  Regardless of the causes, it's our butts and our comrades in arms who are in harms way.  So you do what you trained to do.  The politicians will frakk it up anyway. i.e. Vietnam, nation building, etc...

 

Saddam was a bad dude no doubt, but he was not a religious jihadist and ruled with an iron fist.  He was the lesser of two evils.  We aided Iran back during the Shah days and then we backed Iraq during the nasty Iran-Iraq War.  We even gave Saddam WMD's, so a big stretch to believe he had any...  I've seen the stripped down mobile chemical lab trucks also.  Gassing the Kurds and the persecution of the Kurds was definitely in the genocide category (Ironically the great Islamic leader, Saladin was a Kurd!).  Saddam's son were far worse!  I spent a lot of my time as a contractor around "Spook Central" other wise known as the area of Abu-Grahaib and the Camp Victory area.  I've been to the "Pleasure Palace" where the Saddam boys would take young ladies they picked up en route to be rapped, sometime in front of their families.  The girls would then have to be honor killed of course.  I've met literally hundreds of Iraqi civilian men with the most mangled fingers you would ever imagine.  It was a typical police questioning tactic to use a hammer on their hands.  So if someone wants to justify anything we did with the human rights aspect, I'm fine with that too.  Obviously removing Saddam is no great answer either!

 

It's the Middle East, the only thing for sure is that whatever you choose, you are wrong!

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That was my point.

 

And now we, as the west are torturing our opponents.

 

BV

 

BoilingVessel.   Built in kettle in UK AFVs

 

As an infantry soldier back in the day we'd shave and wash in an inch of two of cold water in a mess tin, then use the merky water to boil up a boil in the bag ration pack.   If you were lucky someone would have a small gas stove in their pack but usually you cooked on a metal stand that supported a mess tin over burning hexamine blocks.

 

It stunk, gave you a headache in a foxhole and took ages to get water 'lukewarm' :)

 

So we used to be jealous of the tankies who had 'hot water on tap'.

 

Not unknown on 'live fire exercise' for hacked off infanteers to 'accidentally' put a burst through the rear bins of the tanks as they were not armoured so while the 5.56 bounced off the tanks itself it shredded the stowage bins and all the tankies kit....

 

With comrades like that who needs enemies.

 

(i actually only ever heard of this happening twice and on the same exercise as their was 'bad blood' between the armour and their supporting infantry over some trivial tribal issue that we sometimes get in the British Army)

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BV?

 

Saddam was a bad dude no doubt, but he was not a religious jihadist and ruled with an iron fist.  He was the lesser of two evils.  We aided Iran back during the Shah days and then we backed Iraq during the nasty Iran-Iraq War.  We even gave Saddam WMD's, so a big stretch to believe he ha

 

 

Oh certainly, he was the most stable and pro western muslim leader there.  Thats why we kept him in power for so long, trained his army, sold him kit etc etc.

 

We totally messed up by 'teaching him a lesson' when he stopped doing *everything* he was told to.

 

we completely knew how he ruled his country and had turned a blind eye for decades.

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