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  • Originally posted by anon45 View Post

    So spend multiple times the amount left to be spent developing a new aircraft?

    What does the USAF do then? Wait another 15 years to develop a comparable multi-role aircraft so that China and Russia can reach parity while the cost of maintaining current F-35's skyrockets because we bought so few?

    The F-35 is what we got, and for what it is it's very good. The cost of restarting the process is a non-starter. Canada's Sea King replacement all over again x 10, and this is too important to go through that with our current global obligations.

    It's literally too big to fail at this point. There is no option to end the program, it would be catastrophic for our air force, and catastrophic to the number of allied countries that placed their own money in the program.
    Pretty much spot on. Whether Trump will actually succeed in diverting profits from LM shareholders back to US taxpayers is probably unlikely but he may have some impact on tenders in the future.

    The real screw-up in costing control was when the alternative RR engine was cancelled. That made engine supply, a significant part of the F-35 build cost, a single source, over a barrel item. Bet that paid for some campaign expenses, amongst other things.

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    • Originally posted by anon45


      Are the people you are hearing this from pilots? If so, have they actually piloted the F-35?

      The F-35 is a multirole aircraft, as have been the F-16, the F-18. It is not intended to replace the F-15 though, even though for a multi-role it is surprisingly good against 4th gen aircraft in dogfights (obviously it is also better at BVR).

      The F-35 is supposed to excel at a2g operations in contested airspace, more specifically against ground based anti air.

      A good series to check what you've heard negatively about the F-35 is the busting myths series on Youtube.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZtZNBkKdO5U
      One of the F-35s biggest problems is that it is not just a multi-role but it is to be a multi multi role aircraft like nothing ever designed before, or after probably. A combo Harrier/F-18/F-16 if you like. No doubt it looked fantastic in the salesman's Win95 Powerpoint presentation 20+ years ago.

      The cost savings of a single plane have not been realised as in many ways the 3 versions are quite different. But by sharing the same core they are all compromises, losing important parts of what could have been achieved with three specialist airplanes.

      Still, the military around the world that have contracted to buy it are going to have to make the best they can with it. It is too far gone financially and politically. I have no doubt that it will turn into a pretty good plane, it has too given the funds pouring into it.

      All those years ago it must have made sense, but now with hindsight it might have been a better strategy to put funds into updating and evolving existing airframes. But a cynic would add that the later had a much more limited profit potential. At least someone seems to have learnt a lesson and the bombers are going to evolve.

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      • Originally posted by JohninMK View Post
        Pretty much spot on. Whether Trump will actually succeed in diverting profits from LM shareholders back to US taxpayers is probably unlikely but he may have some impact on tenders in the future.

        The real screw-up in costing control was when the alternative RR engine was cancelled. That made engine supply, a significant part of the F-35 build cost, a single source, over a barrel item. Bet that paid for some campaign expenses, amongst other things.

        If he does, more power to him, but canceling the F-35 is not leverage he possesses if he is sane and his cabinet is sane. I suppose he could mention privately that future lockheed tenders under his admin could be affected by their decision here.... but that comes with its own pitfalls if boeing should know.

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        • Originally posted by anon45 View Post


          If he does, more power to him, but canceling the F-35 is not leverage he possesses if he is sane and his cabinet is sane. I suppose he could mention privately that future lockheed tenders under his admin could be affected by their decision here.... but that comes with its own pitfalls if boeing should know.
          The F-35 will not be cancelled. All Trump is doing is trying to reduce the unit price by brute force negotiating and the good old 'introduce a competitor' ploy.

          There is a real military problem coming down the tracks with the gap opening up between airframe life in the current fleets and the expected delivery dates of the contracted features going back.

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          • Originally posted by JohninMK View Post
            The F-35 will not be cancelled. All Trump is doing is trying to reduce the unit price by brute force negotiating and the good old 'introduce a competitor' ploy.

            There is a real military problem coming down the tracks with the gap opening up between airframe life in the current fleets and the expected delivery dates of the contracted features going back.


            Well Lockheed was already committed to bringing the cost of the F-35 down to 85 mil a jet by 2020 (almost 15m less than an f-18E/F today), so I could easily see Lockheed simply repeating that promise, Trump claims it as his achievement, Lockheed doesn't say otherwise because let the president have his fun if it satisfies him.

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            • Originally posted by EiB L/T View Post
              Prices are artificially inflated and dont relate to actual cost in any way.
              Do you have any actual evidence or is this what's known as "fake news"?

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              • http://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zone...e-gear-problem

                The issue itself is not new—it has been identified for nearly three years—but Inside Defense has recently learned that the problem is so persistent and potentially detrimental that a red team has been assigned to address it. So far their recommendation is ominous: If fixes cannot be found, the C model’s nose gear should be redesigned altogether.

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                • Originally posted by Guma View Post
                  http://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zone...e-gear-problem

                  The issue itself is not new—it has been identified for nearly three years—but Inside Defense has recently learned that the problem is so persistent and potentially detrimental that a red team has been assigned to address it. So far their recommendation is ominous: If fixes cannot be found, the C model’s nose gear should be redesigned altogether.
                  Consider the source. A better one is here:

                  http://www.f-16.net/forum/viewtopic.php?f=58&t=52644
                  • It's been known about since practically the first catapult launch.
                  • It only happens at very lightweight conditions.
                  "F-35 Program Executive Officer Lt. Gen. Christopher Bogdan told reporters during a Dec. 19 roundtable at his office in Arlington, VA, "there's no doubt" his team has to find a solution to the nose gear.

                  However, he stressed, "the only time that is a problem with the C model is at very light gross weights. At medium weights and at heavy weights you don't see this problem at all."

                  Bogdan said his office is considering numerous short-term fixes, including changing the way pilots strap themselves into the aircraft and how they hold the straps.

                  "The long-term fix surely would be one that you would mechanically fix so that you don't have to make the pilots do any kind of special combinations," Bogdan said. "That fix is probably a couple of years off."

                  Comment


                  • In many ways pretty much a non story. As said, just load the plane up and the problem is reduced to acceptable, but keep on working on a solution.

                    The real downstream issue, that seems to be being avoided atm, is the potential cost of implementing the solution that is not in any budjet, especially if it has to be retrofitted to then existing aircraft. Maybe they will not bother and run non-lightweight.

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                    • VMFA-121's F-35Bs deploy to Japan

                      Ten of of the Marine Corps’ newest fighter jets ... with Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 121 are relocating to Iwakuni MCAS
                      https://news.usni.org/2017/01/10/fir...n-leaves-japan

                      Some pictures:
                      https://www.dvidshub.net/image/30921...location-japan

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                      • In his first press conference since winning November’s election, Trump took aim at the entire US defense industry in his opening remarks, but focused on the F-35 programme as his favourite target. “It’s way, way behind schedule and many, many billions of dollars over budget. I don’t like that,” Trump says. “And we’re going to do some big things on the F-35 programme, and perhaps the F-18 programme. And we’re going to get those costs way down and we’re going to get the plane to be even better. And we’re going to have some competition and it’s going to be a beautiful thing.”Lockheed’s stocks plummeted after Trump’s comment, falling from almost $256 to a low of $251.71 this afternoon.

                        https://www.flightglobal.com/news/ar...tition-433084/

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                        • Originally posted by JohninMK View Post
                          In his first press conference since winning November’s election, Trump took aim at the entire US defense industry in his opening remarks, but focused on the F-35 programme as his favourite target. “It’s way, way behind schedule and many, many billions of dollars over budget. I don’t like that,” Trump says. “And we’re going to do some big things on the F-35 programme, and perhaps the F-18 programme. And we’re going to get those costs way down and we’re going to get the plane to be even better. And we’re going to have some competition and it’s going to be a beautiful thing.”Lockheed’s stocks plummeted after Trump’s comment, falling from almost $256 to a low of $251.71 this afternoon.

                          https://www.flightglobal.com/news/ar...tition-433084/
                          As long as his advisers keep him on track I'm not concerned. If he gets all his info from the MSM (which I highly doubt) god help us.

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                          • Originally posted by Hanse View Post

                            As long as his advisers keep him on track I'm not concerned. If he gets all his info from the MSM (which I highly doubt) god help us.
                            No, it will be coming from W-i-B

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                            • Lockheed Martin has delivered the 200th example of its F-35, an aircraft manufactured for export buyer Japan.

                              https://www.flightglobal.com/news/ar...h-f-35-433110/

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                              • There are now more F-35s than F-22s or Rafales.

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