What are the differences between an HC-130J and an MC-130J?

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raameagle

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Unread post12 Jun 2020, 22:22

Hi,
Can anybody tell me the specific differences, internally and externally between the two types please? Can one be converted to the other quickly or is It just the designation that differs because of the different roles of the aircraft? I’m not asking ‘what are the roles of the two, it’s the actually airframe differences that I’m enquiring about’.
Thanks
Mark
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hehe

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Unread post14 Jun 2020, 17:56

1. There are multiple variations of each model because of modifications. So there is no 1 size fits all differences.

Generally. The differences are:

MC-130J have buffer boards, HC do not

MC-130J have Variable Speed Drogue capabilities, HC do not

MC-130J have additional avionics computers and processors compared to HC

HC have specific rescue mods such as LARS.

MC-130J will eventually have terrain following radar, additional defensive systems, increased situational awareness and more advanced avionics compared to the HC. Years from now they will be vastly different after mods and will be easily distinguished.

Easiest way to spot an HC vs MC, right now, is the tail. HC will have a two letter tail code and tail number is big enough to be visible from a distance. For example moody is "FT". MC only have tail number and it's much smaller and not visible from a large distance.

Fresh off the factory from Lockheed, they are generally the same plane. The mods performed on HC by ACC and on MC by AFSOC are where they become different planes.
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raameagle

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Unread post14 Jun 2020, 19:28

Thanks hehe.

I knew about the different serial presentations but not the rest.

Regards

Mark

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