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Old 06-29-2015, 06:59 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

As reported on Gizmodo:

The F-35 Can't Beat The Plane It's Replacing In A Dogfight: Report

We’ve heard of significant shortcomings before with the fighter jet that’s supposed to be America’s future, but this is just as bad as it gets. The F-35 performed so dismally in a dogfight, that the test pilot remarked that the it had pretty much no place fighting other aircraft within visual range.

And it’s even worse than a mere maneuverability issue. At one point, the pilot’s helmet was so big he couldn’t even turn his head inside the cockpit.

That’s according to a scathing report obtained by our friends over at War Is Boring that details the results of visual range air-to-air engagement tests between an F-35A and an F-16C. The F-35, which the US Air Force, Navy, and Marines are expected to rely upon, in addition to the air arms of militaries across the world for at least the next few decades, was supposed to be better than its F-16 predecessor in all respects.

The F-35’s ability to compete against other fighter aircraft in a close-in dogfight, even against the decades old designs it looks to replace, has always been a contentious issue. Long ago, the F-35’s maneuverability was planned to far exceed that of fourth generation fighters. Over time, those claims eroded to the point where the troubled stealth jet is described as being “about as maneuverable as an F-16.”

The fact that the F-35 can carry its weapons and fuel internally was of course the major deciding factor in being able to make such a claim.

Keep in mind, all of this is anecdotal, but testing reports over almost the last decade have supported the fact that the F-35 was not nearly as nimble as many would like it to be. Still, all claims regarding its performance against other fighters in a dogfight remained largely academic, with only bits of data to compare in a vacuum.

Which is why the candid report described in the War Is Boring article finally gives us a good first hand account as to how capable – or incapable as it may be – the F-35 is in the within-visual-range fight.

The test pilot flying the F-35 makes it very clear that the new jet, even in its ideal configuration without any external stores, was no match against a Block-40 F-16C in a less-than-ideal configuration with a pair of under-wing fuel tanks:

Even with the limited F-16 target configuration, the F-35A remained at a distinct energy disadvantage for every engagement.

In dogfighting, energy is everything, and if your enemy has more kinetic and potential energy for maneuvers than you do, then you’re toast.

The report even goes into what is akin to a fairly desperate move usually only used in one-on-one air combat maneuvers, known as a rudder reversal, that the F-35 is apparently decent at performing at slow speeds. The fact that this was even detailed in the report as a useful tactic is telling. In reality, using such maneuvers means you are probably going to die if any other bad guys are in the area as it rapidly depletes the aircraft’s energy state, leaving it vulnerable to attack.

Another area that the test pilot highlights on is the F-35’s abysmal rearward visibility. David Axe from War Is Boring writes:

And to add insult to injury, the JSF flier discovered he couldn’t even comfortably move his head inside the radar-evading jet’s cramped cockpit. “The helmet was too large for the space inside the canopy to adequately see behind the aircraft.” That allowed the F-16 to sneak up on him.

The report goes on to make other telling remarks about the F-35’s air combat maneuvering performance. It should be noted that the aircraft’s flight software can probably still be tweaked to offer a little wider envelope for pilots to traverse during a hard turning dogfight, but seeing as this test occurred this year (almost a decade after the first F-35 flew), the amount of extra agility that can be squeezed out of the F-35 is most likely marginal at this point.

All of this also reminds us of the fact that we cannot believe the information coming from the program itself, which is troubling. Only as the aircraft continues to enter the fleet (which is a whole other ridiculous story) will we begin to hear more honest reviews of its performance, as in the past we have had to rely on unclassified congressional watch dog reports and other unbiased sources to identify trends and key data points.

Eisenhower, and others to some degree, did warn us gravely to beware of the military-industrial complex I supposed, of which the F-35 is its poster child.

The fact that the F-35 is not really a good fighter at all is reminiscent of the question that we’ve been asking for years — if you don’t really need competitive maneuverability, than why do we need a fighter at all?
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Old 06-29-2015, 07:08 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

The F-35 can't even beat the Chinese SU-27...... I'd say that's a pretty massive fail
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Old 06-29-2015, 07:33 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

And this is the crux of what is wrong with the F-35 program. In order to be an “everything” jet, it does nothing great. Stealth is compromised by the outside ordinance, BVR weapons do not currently fit internally, the head set does not function and what currently is used is too large, Air to ground support is poor and under powered, everything it has been touted to accomplish it cannot except a stable vertical takeoff.

The Air Force has always had special needs and for such, the best way to protect and accomplish such missions is with specialized aircraft. In every new conflict in the past few decades, there has ALWAYS been a need for close combat aircraft. Most times in the Middle East conflicts, aircraft were required to acquire visual confirmation before engaging the enemy due to coalition issues of confirmation of friendly / enemy aircraft.

The best thing the Air Force could do is admit they have a dog with the F-35, drop the program and go with the upgraded F-16 and Silent Eagle F-15 aircraft at a fraction of the cost and keep using the inexpensive A-10 platform. Most war time drone missions can be accomplish quicker, cheaper and without risk through cruise missile technologies now in place.
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Old 06-29-2015, 07:38 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

Does McNamara's one size fits all F-111 ring any bells???
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Old 06-29-2015, 07:50 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

How many extra F-22s could have been built with the money spent on the F-35 program? My guess is...a lot. That's the USAF sorted...
As for the STOVL capabilities, again, would it not just have been cheaper to build/modify Marine aircraft carriers with CATOBAR capability...the RN almost made the smart move to CATOBAR for the QE2 carriers too, before bottling it and going for the compromised STOVL configuration. The RN should have pressed ahead with a navalised Eurofighter Typhoon.
I guess this turkey will likely be the last great manned fighter development in the west...surely next gen supercruise/stealth UAVs are the future anyway.
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Old 06-29-2015, 08:00 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

Boeing has the F-15 Silent Eagle program ready in the background:



The F-16V is the latest version and still selling strong, the US may have to back track to that as well.
Japan also is going ahead with their own stealth fighter program, the ATD-X, it may make an impact in future sales to the global military markets.
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Old 06-29-2015, 08:10 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

Don't forget the Advanced Super Hornet with its concealed weapons pod on the centreline and conformal fuel tanks. Boeing are continually adding low observable features to this most excellent piece of hardware.
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Old 07-03-2015, 10:29 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

Wow, that's a big shocker and I thought that the F-35 was to replace the old but still capable F-16...

That go's to show you that the good ole F-16 is still a very capable & reliable jet fighter, that would give up easy going into retirement..
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Old 07-03-2015, 01:51 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

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Wow, that's a big shocker and I thought that the F-35 was to replace the old but still capable F-16...

That go's to show you that the good ole F-16 is still a very capable & reliable jet fighter, that would give up easy going into retirement..
nah, that viper ain't going down without a fight anytime soon... and wait till they pit the lightning2 against the superbug. be prepared for the superbug to thrash that lightning2. i beginning to wonder if there's any modern day jet that can't thrash the lightning2. honestly, i can't think of any
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Old 07-03-2015, 02:08 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

The F-35 is more of an F-117 replacement than F-16. The F-117 couldn't hang with anything. The basic fact is the F-35 can survive in threat environments (like nasty modern Russian/Chinese SAMs) that the F-16/F-18/AV-8/F-15SE cannot. There's a reason the internal payload is what it is for the F-35 - BVR AMRAAM missiles and bombs - and there's a reason the AIM-9X hasn't been squeezed in there, because the F-35 isn't supposed to be a dogfighter. AIM-9 carriage is external for a reduced threat environment.

It carries lethal BVR missiles for standoff defense, and it isn't set up for WVR engagements. That's what the F-22 is for.

Now, that said, the decision to cap F-22 production was especially stupid, and hopefully someone realizes that someday, however our politicians think playing russian roulette and chicken with basic public safety stuff like National Defense and Air Traffic Control funding is an acceptable practice so who knows. I guess it all depends on who ends up in the White House.

I get that it's arguably a step back, but it's not all about airshows and raw agility. The F-117 sucked at airshows, but that's not what it was all about. How they're actually employed to fight is completely different, and the professionals that actually do this stuff study ways to overcome their mounts' own shortcoming to maximize it against the shortcomings of the opposition. And usually they come up with very good results.

Also keep in mind the media loves to trash any weapons system in development, and then 10 years later after it's in use successfully they're all like 'America *** yea!' and do nothing but sing its praises. AH-64, F-16, F-15...pretty much any design.

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BVR weapons do not currently fit internally
the hell they don't

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Old 07-03-2015, 05:28 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

I never realised the Silent Eagle had canted v.stabs...takes a little getting used to but a beautiful aircraft nonetheless.
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Old 07-03-2015, 07:02 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

Maybe we'll have a new president who will fix the military...naw, but I can dream. BTW, look up the Arthur C Clarke short story "Superiority" if you want to see the direction the US is going.
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Old 07-03-2015, 08:10 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

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look up the Arthur C Clarke short story "Superiority" if you want to see the direction the US is going.
Good story thanks for sharing.

Short Story - Superiority - by Arthur C. Clarke
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Old 07-04-2015, 01:13 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

More proof that this country is being run by idiots in all facets of the federal government. There are no leaders, and the morons that get elected/appointed to high ranking positions refuse to listen to real experts regardless of the issue at hand. We see numerous (near) failing military projects that suck up billions of $$ all for the sake of making the involved politicians look good to their party, constituents and the contractors who get paid to make junk.

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Old 07-04-2015, 02:36 PM   #15 (permalink)
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The F-35 is more of an F-117 replacement than F-16. The F-117 couldn't hang with anything. The basic fact is the F-35 can survive in threat environments (like nasty modern Russian/Chinese SAMs) that the F-16/F-18/AV-8/F-15SE cannot. There's a reason the internal payload is what it is for the F-35 - BVR AMRAAM missiles and bombs - and there's a reason the AIM-9X hasn't been squeezed in there, because the F-35 isn't supposed to be a dogfighter. AIM-9 carriage is external for a reduced threat environment.

It carries lethal BVR missiles for standoff defense, and it isn't set up for WVR engagements. That's what the F-22 is for.

Now, that said, the decision to cap F-22 production was especially stupid, and hopefully someone realizes that someday, however our politicians think playing russian roulette and chicken with basic public safety stuff like National Defense and Air Traffic Control funding is an acceptable practice so who knows. I guess it all depends on who ends up in the White House.

I get that it's arguably a step back, but it's not all about airshows and raw agility. The F-117 sucked at airshows, but that's not what it was all about. How they're actually employed to fight is completely different, and the professionals that actually do this stuff study ways to overcome their mounts' own shortcoming to maximize it against the shortcomings of the opposition. And usually they come up with very good results.

Also keep in mind the media loves to trash any weapons system in development, and then 10 years later after it's in use successfully they're all like 'America *** yea!' and do nothing but sing its praises. AH-64, F-16, F-15...pretty much any design.


the hell they don't
f35 more a replacement of the f117 than f16? when was the f117 retired? i thought the f22 was its replacement, not the f35. after all the f22s have taken on such roles whereas the f35 is still very much a work in progress. then again, i could be wrong.

the f35 can survive threat environment that the f16/f18/av8/f15se cannot? well of course they will. they'll probably still be sitting in their hangars or doing test flights while the rest diligently perform their duties

bvr eh? reports have it that vipers with aim-9s have crept up behind f35s (and it has also been confirmed that anything flying behind a f35 is bvr ) so amraams are only effective if f35s had the element of surprise. and, correct me if i'm wrong, counter measures work more effectively against amraams than they do with with asraams, no? it's not supposed to be a dogfighter? then what are we giving the boys for close aa combat? or has it been deemed redundant in modern warfare? we'd probably be better off developing kamikaze-able umv's instead

but i agree, what were they thinking when they pulled the plug on the f22s??? what can the f35 do that the f22 cannot besides being launched off a carrier? then again, if they've launched heavier stuff off carriers before, haven't they? no point having to keep vipers in service simply coz lil bro couldn't take care of himself, is there? so what's the f35s role again, exactly? and where does it really fit in? instead of sending f35s in, couldn't the same be achieved with the f22s? but what do i know, i'm just a keyboard critic not privy to the "highly confidential" stuff that makes the f35 the "most advanced" jsf ever developed

ooh... the media thrashed the f16s and the f15s, did they? must be getting old. no recollection of that whatsoever. thought they were singing praises (which was quite often the case during the cold war era of psychological warfare anyway), just that they didn't understand why the usn and usaf were being so anal about having their own spv's.

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Old 07-04-2015, 02:36 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

For those who claim the ability to maneuver in a dogfight is not relevant. When the F-14/15/16 appeared on the scene imagine how it would've been construed if the F-4 had beat them on those terms. Or if the F-86 had beaten the F-4 in a fly-off. Notwithstanding weapon payload, range, maximum speed (the latter two items we Canucks will need to intercept those pesky Bears continuing to fly over the Arctic). All traits that make for a good fighter, and which it appears the F-35 is disadvantaged compared to any of the earlier-gen fighters. I get that stealth is supposed to save the day and redraw tactics from the ground up but am a firm believer that stealth tech will be negated probably sooner than later. Remember for every countermeasure there will eventually be a counter-countermeasure. Once it's only advantage (stealth) is negated there are no other redeeming qualities to this aircraft compared to aircraft presently in service. Never thought I'd admit it but seems advanced combat drones would be favourable to continuing with this massive debacle. Hoping common sense prevails (but not holding my breath)
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Old 07-04-2015, 02:49 PM   #17 (permalink)
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For those who claim the ability to maneuver in a dogfight is not relevant. When the F-14/15/16 appeared on the scene imagine how it would've been construed if the F-4 had beat them on those terms. Or if the F-86 had beaten the F-4 in a fly-off. Notwithstanding weapon payload, range, maximum speed (the latter two items we Canucks will need to intercept those pesky Bears continuing to fly over the Arctic). All traits that make for a good fighter, and which it appears the F-35 is disadvantaged compared to any of the earlier-gen fighters. I get that stealth is supposed to save the day and redraw tactics from the ground up but am a firm believer that stealth tech will be negated probably sooner than later. Remember for every countermeasure there will eventually be a counter-countermeasure. Once it's only advantage (stealth) is negated there are no other redeeming qualities to this aircraft compared to aircraft presently in service. Never thought I'd admit it but seems advanced combat drones would be favourable to continuing with this massive debacle. Hoping common sense prevails (but not holding my breath)
did you just summarised my earlier post?

agreed. the f35 is crap... well packaged crap. you canucks are better off with your cf18s, seriously. doubt you'll be operating against advance russian and chinese sams... although i have encountered a number of chinese lees in vancouver
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Old 07-06-2015, 02:36 PM   #18 (permalink)
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did you just summarised my earlier post?
Haha, sorry honestly didn't intend to do that. Just saying out loud what was on my mind (although that can cause trouble sometimes). Sincerely hope we get some constructive insight into the best options to replace the CF-18. Cheers
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Old 07-09-2015, 05:38 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

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f35 more a replacement of the f117 than f16? when was the f117 retired? i thought the f22 was its replacement, not the f35. after all the f22s have taken on such roles whereas the f35 is still very much a work in progress. then again, i could be wrong.

the f35 can survive threat environment that the f16/f18/av8/f15se cannot? well of course they will. they'll probably still be sitting in their hangars or doing test flights while the rest diligently perform their duties

bvr eh? reports have it that vipers with aim-9s have crept up behind f35s (and it has also been confirmed that anything flying behind a f35 is bvr ) so amraams are only effective if f35s had the element of surprise. and, correct me if i'm wrong, counter measures work more effectively against amraams than they do with with asraams, no? it's not supposed to be a dogfighter? then what are we giving the boys for close aa combat? or has it been deemed redundant in modern warfare? we'd probably be better off developing kamikaze-able umv's instead

but i agree, what were they thinking when they pulled the plug on the f22s??? what can the f35 do that the f22 cannot besides being launched off a carrier? then again, if they've launched heavier stuff off carriers before, haven't they? no point having to keep vipers in service simply coz lil bro couldn't take care of himself, is there? so what's the f35s role again, exactly? and where does it really fit in? instead of sending f35s in, couldn't the same be achieved with the f22s? but what do i know, i'm just a keyboard critic not privy to the "highly confidential" stuff that makes the f35 the "most advanced" jsf ever developed

ooh... the media thrashed the f16s and the f15s, did they? must be getting old. no recollection of that whatsoever. thought they were singing praises (which was quite often the case during the cold war era of psychological warfare anyway), just that they didn't understand why the usn and usaf were being so anal about having their own spv's.
There are some big differences between the F-35 and F-22, namely the weapons loadout/carriage and targeting sensors/optics. The F-35 is much more like the F-117 in that it has internal targeting sensors and optics instead of relying on an external targeting pod, so it has its own FLIR and laser targeting systems and as such can employ laser and optically-guided weaponry unlike the F-22. So far the F-22's air-to-ground load options are limited to GPS-guided 2,000lb JDAMs or 250lb Small Diameter Bombs (SBDs), that's it. The F-35 also has all those cool cameras and sensors all over the aircraft allowing the pilot to 'look through the floor' so the overall awareness should be stellar compared to what every other aircraft has to do now in having to stare at a multi-function display (MFD) in the cockpit to see what the sensors are seeing, but there is lots of fine-tuning to be had here as the helmet display has had some significant teething issues, no sugarcoating that. But I imagine similar difficulties were encountered long ago with the AH-64 and the helmet steerage for TADS/PNVS and the gun, and clearly they were overcome.

At its core, the F-22 is build as an air superiority fighter with a secondary and limited ability to carry some bombs. AFAIK it cannot carry any bombs on any wing stations yet, I imagine if there were a need there could be a testing program to adapt this, but so far F-22 wing stations are strictly for external fuel tanks and carriage of AIM-120s for ferrying purposes (I don't think they can be fired from the wing rails, it's supposedly only to carry missiles when the aircraft are being ferried to deployment locations).

The F-35 is built as an attack/bomber aircraft with a secondary self-defense and limited fighter option. I imagine hopes were higher originally in its performance, but what has worked out will be adequate.

As for the retirement of the F-117, it seemed premature to me as the F-22 is absolutely not a direct replacement. However I imagine the F-22s limited strike abilities, plus whatever is flying out there in the black world, were enough to justify the gap in capability waiting for the F-35 to come online.

I know the identifiers are all misnomers - the F-117 only dropped bombs, so why wasn't it an A or B-117? The F-35 could actually be called the F/A-35 pretty reasonably, and to call the F-22 the F/A-22 was pure fraud. But whatever, it is what it is. The MV-22 and CV-22 designations should be swapped as well as 'M' is multimission/specops and 'C' is cargo, not Marines, I mean they weren't flying MH-46s or MH-53s, they're CH-46s and CH-53s...whatever.

Two interesting articles I came across on both sides of this topic (and neither written by Tyler Rogoway, who is a great photographer but his articles come up lacking)....F-16 Vs. F-35 In A Dogfight: JPO, Air Force Weigh In On Who’s Best « Breaking Defense - Defense industry news, analysis and commentary and aviationweek.com/blog/behind-f-35-air-combat-report

tomcatter, I'll try to reply more to your post, lots to it.
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Old 07-09-2015, 06:04 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

Looks like my last link didn't post as a link!

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Old 07-09-2015, 08:33 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Lets not forget that the F-35 in the test was forced to dogfight in the traditional way of maneuvering to get behind the enemy, which it is not designed for. The F-35 which was used was one of the very first off the production line, and it wasn't allowed to use it's DAS. In combat the DAS, with its 360 degree spherical view, can be used to track targets and even fire at targets which are behind the it. This virtually eliminates the need to turn tight to get the target in it's sights, because its sights effectively expand 360 degrees. This system, when used, makes the F-35 arguably the best dogfighter to date, to be able to fire a missile without even turning to face the enemy. If you take that system away, then of course its going to be sluggish in a dogfight, because its fighting in a way its not primarily designed to.

Lets also not forget that the pilot of the F-35 had very little time in it, compared to the F-16 pilot who had heaps of time.
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Old 07-10-2015, 03:36 AM   #22 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

jumper... ok, i get you on why the f35 is more like the f117. but the f117 wasn't particularly successful, was it? and would it be too difficult to upgrade the f22 given the cost of the f35 development, you think? just saying. i don't know the answer, honestly. all i know is that the f22 has a larger internal bay, more thrust and yes, the underwing pylons are capable of launching missiles. they're meant for different roles, i suppose. but mebbe it's like saying why have the viper when the eagle can do the job? hmm...

jamenator 1... that's assuming they have any firepower left when they engage the enemy. then again, you may be on to something there... kinda like bond cars spilling spikes on chasing vehicles. mebbe that's the f35's "secret weapon"
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Old 07-10-2015, 04:20 AM   #23 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

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I never realised the Silent Eagle had canted v.stabs...takes a little getting used to but a beautiful aircraft nonetheless.
It's a stealth feature.
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Old 07-11-2015, 02:23 AM   #24 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

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the f117 wasn't particularly successful, was it? and would it be too difficult to upgrade the f22 given the cost of the f35 development, you think?
Well the cockroach (nickname for the F-117) did its job - did its thing in the dark, and scurried away when the lights got turned on. It got in, dropped its bombs and got out, and only got caught once. I'd say it was satisfactory, and again remember the technology level - late 70s stuff.

As for F-35 mods to the F-22, yeah maybe you could do it but I don't imagine it'd be much cheaper than just procuring the F-35s as planned. I've always thought a F-22 Strike Eagle replacement was kind of intriguing. If the F-35 turns out to be an actual turd, then maybe a restarted F-22 production line could fix that - Reagan restarted the C-5 line to make the C-5B and the B-1 line to make the B-1B...after his predecessors had eliminated them. So, it's possible.

In the meantime, I'm sure the F-35 will work out okay.
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Old 07-11-2015, 05:18 AM   #25 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

well you never know... cockroaches are resilient creatures. quite a number of cockroaches remain in mission ready condition so take the official retirement report with a pinch of salt (it still remains usaf's most clandestine project).

yups... the raptor programme could be resurrected, although i believe the silent eagle has more chance than the raptor rival. i think it's a matter of which programme best matches the overall programme taking into consideration of its current inventory and operational suitability. but i do foresee more and more umv's moving to the forefront. rise of the machines...
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Old 07-11-2015, 12:14 PM   #26 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

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yups... the raptor programme could be resurrected, although i believe the silent eagle has more chance than the raptor rival. i think it's a matter of which programme best matches the overall programme taking into consideration of its current inventory and operational suitability. but i do foresee more and more umv's moving to the forefront. rise of the machines...
The Silent Eagle is dead. Nobody's buying it, and there's been little interest. Some things that might make sense don't make it, I mean the B-52H is still flying around on its tiny TF-33 engines instead of being re-engined 20 years ago, the F-20 Tigershark made all sorts of sense but nobody bought them because they wanted F-16s...

UAS still have issues, the technology to employ them efficiently just isn't there yet. I think the drone in Iran incident with possible GPS spoofing and signal interception proves that. But no doubt, it's being worked on.
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Old 07-11-2015, 12:22 PM   #27 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

Well, the Australians have nixed the F-35B. They say it's too costly to upgrade their assault ships to accommodate this dog, but I think the Aussies have finally realized what a POS this aircraft really is.
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Old 07-11-2015, 12:24 PM   #28 (permalink)
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The Silent Eagle is dead. Nobody's buying it, and there's been little interest. Some things that might make sense don't make it, I mean the B-52H is still flying around on its tiny TF-33 engines instead of being re-engined 20 years ago, the F-20 Tigershark made all sorts of sense but nobody bought them because they wanted F-16s...

UAS still have issues, the technology to employ them efficiently just isn't there yet. I think the drone in Iran incident with possible GPS spoofing and signal interception proves that. But no doubt, it's being worked on.
Nobody is interested in the Silent Eagle because it's based on a 40 year old aircraft. Plus, if the US doesn't want it, nobody else wants it either.
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Old 07-11-2015, 03:47 PM   #29 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

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If the US doesn't want it, nobody else wants it either.
Which is why nobody bought the F-20 Tigershark either. Everybody jumped on the F-16 bandwagon!
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Old 07-11-2015, 04:56 PM   #30 (permalink)
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Which is why nobody bought the F-20 Tigershark either. Everybody jumped on the F-16 bandwagon!
And the F-20 was based on the 22-year-old F-5. The Pentagon is in love with new stuff, they get all gaga over a brand-new aircraft versus pushing the design of older, still-amazing airframes. This is never more apparent than with the battle to retire the A-10s. The 'Hogs could undergo a full upgrade in avionics, wing design and engines, and be outstanding for another 30 years...but the stupidity and short-sightedness of our military leadership can't stand the idea of flying more "old" airplanes, even if nothing new can touch them.
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Old 07-12-2015, 12:20 AM   #31 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

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And the F-20 was based on the 22-year-old F-5. The Pentagon is in love with new stuff, they get all gaga over a brand-new aircraft versus pushing the design of older, still-amazing airframes. This is never more apparent than with the battle to retire the A-10s. The 'Hogs could undergo a full upgrade in avionics, wing design and engines, and be outstanding for another 30 years...but the stupidity and short-sightedness of our military leadership can't stand the idea of flying more "old" airplanes, even if nothing new can touch them.
yups... but the eagle hasn't ceased production whereas the raptor has. upgrading the eagle would be a much cheaper exercise than resurrecting the raptor, just saying. but yeah... vanity of having a good looking bird over an aging design always hold sway. and back to the lightning 2... the longer the fiasco continues, the more disenchanted the contributing nations will be. it's a test of patience.

as for the uavs... the us may not be heading in that direction but china has gone the way of specific purpose uavs over an all purpose uav. it has perhaps turned out to be cheaper too...
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Old 07-14-2015, 10:33 AM   #32 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

Rafale beats F-35 & F-22 in Flight International - The DEW Line

Rafale is a serious contender.
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Old 07-14-2015, 12:55 PM   #33 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

http://tdhp.fr.yuku.com/topic/19948/...r-Ever?page=-1
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Old 07-14-2015, 09:02 PM   #34 (permalink)
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hahaha. we've only just started comparing the lightning2 with the viper

you're right... the european birds do not get the due respect they truly deserve. not just the rafale... but also the gripen and typhoon.

not sure how accurate the information is in this site:

Aircraft Comparison - Best Planes

but it makes for an interesting paper comparison. go match the f35 with your favourite bird and be content. except perhaps for its stealth ability and advance avionics. the f35 is one expensive bird to fly and its abilities yet unproven. i don't know whether it's common... but it's interesting to note that lockheed uses simulators in their contract bids instead of demo birds?
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Old 07-20-2015, 08:09 PM   #35 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

From what I have been reading, seems the pentagon is realizing just how bad of a bird the F-35 is. There is now quite a bit of pressure to ramp up the F-X program for the next gen manned fighter. And many are admitting shutting down the F-22 program was a mistake but the estimates of getting the production moving again is somewhere around 10 years to do so. The USAF is admitting that the UAV programs cannot be relied upon and that a manned program is till the way to go. Sounds like though this will be a squarely USAF program as the Navy does not want to get in on the program heavy at this time. Boeing is said to be ramping this up with the expectation that US military spending will go up as soon as the current administration is out. I thought for sure they would look to a tried and true program of the past but that is not going to be the case. I guess that goes in tradition of the past programs political maneuvering and military mindset.
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Old 07-20-2015, 08:23 PM   #36 (permalink)
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I thought that was a competition, not someone's opinion. Even if he's a Red Arrow pilot. The Rafale, the Typhoon, the Su-35, the Gripen...they're all excellent aircraft. But everyone knows, it's the pilots who make the real difference. A great pilot can make a so-so fighter plane excel.
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Old 07-21-2015, 01:29 AM   #37 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

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Sounds like though this will be a squarely USAF program as the Navy does not want to get in on the program heavy at this time.
If there's any truth in this, it is indeed shades of the F-111B all over again (realize it's been said before). Funny how the programs seem to be nearly parallel in many respects. Sad that nothing has been learned from it.
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Old 07-21-2015, 03:13 AM   #38 (permalink)
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I thought that was a competition, not someone's opinion. Even if he's a Red Arrow pilot. The Rafale, the Typhoon, the Su-35, the Gripen...they're all excellent aircraft. But everyone knows, it's the pilots who make the real difference. A great pilot can make a so-so fighter plane excel.
it's always a combination, isn't it?
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Old 07-21-2015, 10:57 PM   #39 (permalink)
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Default Re: First in Field testing, F-35 cannot beat a F-16.

What's really sad about all this is the US's refusal to buy any other nation's fighter aircraft, no matter how good it is. The military-industrial complex won't allow it.
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Old 07-21-2015, 11:09 PM   #40 (permalink)
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What's really sad about all this is the US's refusal to buy any other nation's fighter aircraft, no matter how good it is. The military-industrial complex won't allow it.
we're the best of the best... of the best, SIR!
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