U.S. Navy farewells F/A-18C Hornet aircraft

Cold war, Korea, Vietnam, and Desert Storm - up to and including for example the A-10, F-15, Mirage 200, MiG-29, and F-18.
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f-16adf

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Unread post11 Feb 2019, 17:27

The Tomcat is pretty good around the 300KIAS number, give or take. I will admit that. But its Ps are in a spike, meaning he cannot decelerate across the board as the F-16 can. And generally after .7-.8IMN the Ps are in a steep decline, why? because the wings are starting to go back. He's losing trailing edge span.

Now how is it that the F-16 beats a VG F-14BD Tomcat, even a crummy underpowered one say a Block 25? At those speeds?


Here it is:

viewtopic.php?p=387607#p387607 (read JBGator's post)


As JBGator said, the F-16 can DECELERATE : "I can't translate the 800-1000 -Ps the F-16 has during that turn but I can tell you over 23 years of flying the F-16 that I would be around 330-350 KCAS (about .61+) still doing about the 14 DPS of the Tomcat at Ps=0,"



And if it is simply too hard for all the F-14 mafia to understand, well, here are the words of GD pilot Neil Anderson at the 1985 Paris Airshow. And the F-16 version he is talking about and in the demo is an underpowered BLOCK 25. Now how can an underpowered Block 25 complete a 360 degree turn in only 13.5-15 seconds (it cannot do it at P=0, but....), because he is decelerating across his horizontal plateau. He is going from 350KIAS down to 240-250KIAS. Listen to his words beginning at 7:50 mark.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fo74tX10JSQ



Even if you strip off all the F-14BD's armament and drop down to sea level. The Variable Geometry jet cannot match that turn at P=0 and it cannot decelerate across the board, because its Ps are in a spike. Meaning it loses more energy than the fixed wing F-16.
Last edited by f-16adf on 11 Feb 2019, 17:40, edited 5 times in total.
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f-16adf

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Unread post11 Feb 2019, 17:29

Sferrin, I trust what the GAO report says concerning weight.


The YF-22 in becoming the F-22 gained over 10Klbs. The NATF would have probably gain much, much more.
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tomcattech

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Unread post11 Feb 2019, 20:10

f-16adf wrote:And if it is simply too hard for all the F-14 mafia to understand.


LOL.... "F-14 Mafia"

Haven't heard THAT term in a while...
Hornets by mandate. Tomcats by choice!!
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mixelflick

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Unread post12 Feb 2019, 14:06

But I also don't get mixelflick's weird hate for the F/A-18, it's a good airplane, and even aerodynamically it's not bad, it doesn't have energy of F-16 but it's got much better high AoA and nose pointing and also bigger radar. Hornet has best high AoA of any 4th gen US fighter.

Mixel still hates the F/A-18 and always will. Mostly b/c it's "not bad". Not bad isn't American. Fearsome. Dominant. Overkill is American.

You made some good points though, so your postings weren't entirely wasted on me. Mix still hates it.

But he hates it less now... :)
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sferrin

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Unread post12 Feb 2019, 14:15

mixelflick wrote:But I also don't get mixelflick's weird hate for the F/A-18, it's a good airplane, and even aerodynamically it's not bad, it doesn't have energy of F-16 but it's got much better high AoA and nose pointing and also bigger radar. Hornet has best high AoA of any 4th gen US fighter.

Mixel still hates the F/A-18 and always will. Mostly b/c it's "not bad". Not bad isn't American. Fearsome. Dominant. Overkill is American.

You made some good points though, so your postings weren't entirely wasted on me. Mix still hates it.

But he hates it less now... :)


My favorite "version" of the line was the P.530 Cobra. (Though this probably isn't it as the 530 lost the inlet cones.)

Northrop-P530-Cobra.jpg


This one is though:

97b21feb2f68fbba6529502df919a4ed.jpg


The F-18L would have probably been a hell of a plane.
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sprstdlyscottsmn

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Unread post12 Feb 2019, 15:24

sferrin wrote:
The F-18L would have probably been a hell of a plane.

Especially with -402 motors.
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sferrin

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Unread post12 Feb 2019, 15:35

sprstdlyscottsmn wrote:
sferrin wrote:
The F-18L would have probably been a hell of a plane.

Especially with -402 motors.


Just imagining that Swiss routine someone posted but with a lighter airframe. :shock:
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Unread post12 Feb 2019, 15:56

"And to further state that "the Super Tomcat's maneuvering performance has not been accomplished in any US or foreign design to this day" AGAIN COMPLETELY LAUGHABLE..."

Agree. To the armchair critic, the only thing more attractive than 'the one that was never built' is the vaporware that might be built in the future.

"FYI, when French Navy Rafales fought D Tomcats and C and E Hornets back in 2002. They said the Tomcat was the easiest to beat, and the Legacy Hornet the most difficult (out of those three they fought)."

Completely consistent with the experience of everyone I know re: Tomcats and Hornet types in BFM. As we've discussed here before, the Tomcat wasnt built as a knife fighter and, in BFM, suffered from the limitations of the TF-30. By the time the new engines showed up, lotsa stuff had passed it by systems-wise. It was also a very maintenance-intensive aircraft, largely reflective of the design/technology era that birthed it. Many people forget (or never knew) how seemingly revolutionary Hornet reliability was in its early years.
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kdub104

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Unread post12 Feb 2019, 22:57

Trying to sus all the info here out.

Rhetoric for years has been it was a huge mistake to retire the F-14 and replace it with the Super Hornet. Range, speed and payload are the sited factors for the poor decision. And let us not forget the poor kinematics of the S/H as the main culprit for this "travesty".

Yet the defence of the S/H here in this thread has opened my eyes, most noticeably the range facts and fuel capacity numbers, yet both sides of the argument mostly agree on one thing; poor kinematics.

I have read in (I believe it is the Australian publication) "AirPower" that any Hornet model will get whooped by the Flanker, particularly in regards to kinematics.

Okay, so the S/H is not an energy fighter and the Tomcat is. Got it. But let us pretend the Tomcat was retained and upgraded, etc.... My question then surrounds the kinematics of 3 aircraft:

1. Super Tomcat
2. S/H with 414 EPE producing 26,400 lbs thrust
3. Mig-31

Will the 414 EPE with 26,400 lbs thrust realize the S/H as an energy fighter?
How will this engine upgrade fair against the F-14D or Super Tomcat regarding kinematics?
And...
How do these both compare against the M2.8, 65,000 ft+ MIG-31 carrying the potent R-37? Would this combination not make any version of the Tomcat or Hornet a moot point in the kinematic argument?

Or we would never see this face off due to the F-14/F-18 being naval and the MIG-31 being land based?

Who is the threat now to the fleet? Russian Naval Flanker?
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knowan

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Unread post13 Feb 2019, 15:41

f-16adf wrote:Sferrin, I trust what the GAO report says concerning weight.


The YF-22 in becoming the F-22 gained over 10Klbs. The NATF would have probably gain much, much more.


I've always found that weight gain to be bizarre, given it uses a much greater amount of composites than a F-15.
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mixelflick

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Unread post13 Feb 2019, 16:26

kdub104 wrote:Trying to sus all the info here out.

Rhetoric for years has been it was a huge mistake to retire the F-14 and replace it with the Super Hornet. Range, speed and payload are the sited factors for the poor decision. And let us not forget the poor kinematics of the S/H as the main culprit for this "travesty".

Yet the defence of the S/H here in this thread has opened my eyes, most noticeably the range facts and fuel capacity numbers, yet both sides of the argument mostly agree on one thing; poor kinematics.

I have read in (I believe it is the Australian publication) "AirPower" that any Hornet model will get whooped by the Flanker, particularly in regards to kinematics.

Okay, so the S/H is not an energy fighter and the Tomcat is. Got it. But let us pretend the Tomcat was retained and upgraded, etc.... My question then surrounds the kinematics of 3 aircraft:

1. Super Tomcat
2. S/H with 414 EPE producing 26,400 lbs thrust
3. Mig-31

Will the 414 EPE with 26,400 lbs thrust realize the S/H as an energy fighter?
How will this engine upgrade fair against the F-14D or Super Tomcat regarding kinematics?
And...
How do these both compare against the M2.8, 65,000 ft+ MIG-31 carrying the potent R-37? Would this combination not make any version of the Tomcat or Hornet a moot point in the kinematic argument?

Or we would never see this face off due to the F-14/F-18 being naval and the MIG-31 being land based?

Who is the threat now to the fleet? Russian Naval Flanker?


The Super Tomcat would be able to super-cruise (without afterburners). The Mig-31 can also super-cruise, although I don't know if it can without burner. The ST's Phoenix missiles would pose a tremendous threat to the Mig-31, as the Mig-25 was even faster and several were brought down by Iranian Tomcats/phoenix. And bear in mind, that was with the old TF-30's/AWG-9. The ST21 would have had it all over the up-engined Hornet or Mig-31 in the radar department too, and it's electro-optical equipment would also be of great benefit. See below, two F-14A's tracking Foxbats (in burner!) all day long..

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0zGWXjk1__w

The first shots are of it tracking a Mig-23. At the 3:00 mark though, they're sticking to maneuvering Foxbats in burner. Dead meat, had they chosen to engage..

The Mig-31 is a fine aircraft, but would fall to a ST quickly. The up-engined F-18... doubtful it could super-cruise. Doubtful its radar would have been as capable. Doubtful it's Sparrow could bring a Foxbat down, given it couldn't catch up to one, and gain a firing solution. Doubtful it had to the legs after using so much fuel trying to catch up.

I will say this: The up-rated F-404/s/414's are incredibly impressive engines. So much thrust (especially the 26,000lb version!), for such a tiny engine..
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crosshairs

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Unread post14 Feb 2019, 03:12

knowan wrote:
f-16adf wrote:Sferrin, I trust what the GAO report says concerning weight.


The YF-22 in becoming the F-22 gained over 10Klbs. The NATF would have probably gain much, much more.


I've always found that weight gain to be bizarre, given it uses a much greater amount of composites than a F-15.


The demonstrators were not built to be flown for 25 years and lacked in avionics and systems.
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Unread post14 Feb 2019, 09:14

sferrin wrote:
This one is though:

97b21feb2f68fbba6529502df919a4ed.jpg


The F-18L would have probably been a hell of a plane.


Funny thing, the F-18L COULD have been the Gripen. MDD pitched the L as JAS for replacement of the Gripen. GD presented the F-16 and Northrop the F-5 and F-20.
F-18L were the true performer since it was much lighter than 18A and the aerofixes would probably have been implemented, F-16 were not far behind but the avionics were not good enough and the air intake was deemed unsuitable for road base use. (No walking of the runway/road before operation begins). F5 and F-20 were not suited for roadbases either, I think the wing was too small (not enough payload for TO and Land).
And, if it were to be made, the engines could have been RM12.
Question Sferrin, where is this picture (artists impression) taken from? haven't sen the strake on the radome before...

regards
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Unread post16 Feb 2019, 13:25

YF-17 looked to be a very good design.

Unfortunately, it ran into the penultimate energy fighter of its day - the F-16. One thing I keep wondering about though.. Why on Earth did the YF-17 design team choose NOT to use the F-100, being it's common to the F-15?

Not enough thrust to meet the thrust to weight ratio requirements?
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marsavian

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Unread post16 Feb 2019, 13:34

Unfortunately, it ran into the penultimate energy fighter of its day - the F-16.


So what was the ultimate ? Typhoon ? F-16 may actually be a little better close to sea level. Flanker was pretty good at sea level too, check airshow best turns which f-16adf has a list of.
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