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Thread: F-35 v F/A-18 Shornet-play ground style

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    F-35 v F/A-18 Shornet-play ground style


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    Senior Contributor SteveDaPirate's Avatar
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    Zraver,

    Seems like Boeing is feeling a little petulant. My understanding was that the Navy was not planning to replace the Superhornets with F-35s anyway. I seem to recall the plan is to operate them alongside each other.


    Littlealex,

    WTF are you talking about dude?

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    The replacements

    Quote Originally Posted by SteveDaPirate View Post
    Zraver,

    Seems like Boeing is feeling a little petulant. My understanding was that the Navy was not planning to replace the Superhornets with F-35s anyway. I seem to recall the plan is to operate them alongside each other.
    F-18Cs would be replaced. Though there have been rumblings that more E/Fs might be bought instead of F-35s; that is where the competition would come in. AFAIK no existing Supers were to be replaced by F-35 under any plan; the question is whether more F-18E/F buys would displace F-35 buys due to cost overruns and delays.

    The 3:1 cost ratio I think is greatly exaggerated.

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    "Nope it's broke," priceless!

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    Quote Originally Posted by SteveDaPirate View Post
    Zraver,
    Seems like Boeing is feeling a little petulant. My understanding was that the Navy was not planning to replace the Superhornets with F-35s anyway. I seem to recall the plan is to operate them alongside each other.
    It's a commercial by a Canadian company. I don't think the US Navy gives a rats ass, but the average Canadian taxpayer might...

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    Senior Contributor SteveDaPirate's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JA Boomer View Post
    It's a commercial by a Canadian company. I don't think the US Navy gives a rats ass, but the average Canadian taxpayer might...
    You are quite right JA Boomer, I missed that the commercial was made by a Canadian company. When I saw Super Hornets I immediately assumed it must be aimed at the USN or USMC.

    Any idea on which way the wind is blowing in Canada at the moment as far as a sticking with the F-35 buy or having a full blown fighter competition? I could see a competition between the Adv. Super Hornet, F-35, Eurofighter Typhoon, Rafael, and Gripen potentially taking place.

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    It's been pretty quiet lately actually. In 2010, Canada announced it would purchase 65 F-35A fighters. In 2012 the Auditor General came out with a report that indicated the government had not been accurately representing the life cycle costs of the F-35 purchase, because of this, the process of acquiring new fighter jets was restarted. I don't believe we've been told what jets are included in the evaluation, the timetable for the evaluation, or if their will be a public RFP for the jets.

    There seemed to be a large public outcry when the original Auditor General's report came out, but it fizzled out. Of course the general public doesn't understand the capability difference between the two jets.

    I know there's a lot of people who aren't big on the F-35, and I realize it has it's shortcomings, being a plane of compromise by trying to fulfil so many roles with one airframe. However, buying a 4+ generation fighter plane at this point in time doesn't make sense to me, so I would think the F-35 is the only realistic option.

    To be honest I suspect the next federal election will determine whether the Conservatives finally take delivery of the F-35, or whether the Liberals order Super Hornets and slap themselves on the back despite what plane the RCAF determines it requires to meet it's obligations.

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    From what I have seen, the F-35 costs around a third more than the Advanced Super Hornet being pitched by Boeing. But if the RCAF wants a 5th generation fighter the F-35 is really the only game in town at the moment. The Advanced Super Hornet is a definite upgrade of the CF-18, but I imagine it is pushing the limits of how much you can improve a 1980s airframe.

    Another possibility might be to take the Australian approach and buy a few Super Hornets now to fill in the gaps prior to taking delivery of the F-35 around 2020. I would imagine most of the growing pains would be sorted out by that point, and we might be seeing the F-35 block II rolling off the line with a list of improvements like a more powerful engine, improved radar, etc.

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    The non-political reality is that they are contemplating the 2 engine requirement which might be the thing that dooms the F-35. Personally I'd rather see F-35's in the RCAF than F-18Es, but that's just me.

    Quote Originally Posted by JA Boomer View Post
    I know there's a lot of people who aren't big on the F-35, and I realize it has it's shortcomings, being a plane of compromise by trying to fulfil so many roles with one airframe. However, buying a 4+ generation fighter plane at this point in time doesn't make sense to me, so I would think the F-35 is the only realistic option.

    To be honest I suspect the next federal election will determine whether the Conservatives finally take delivery of the F-35, or whether the Liberals order Super Hornets and slap themselves on the back despite what plane the RCAF determines it requires to meet it's obligations.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GGTharos View Post
    The non-political reality is that they are contemplating the 2 engine requirement which might be the thing that dooms the F-35. Personally I'd rather see F-35's in the RCAF than F-18Es, but that's just me.
    I mentioned a while ago that Canada might want to consider the F-15SE since it, too, has two engines, but that would involve a whole different logistics train than the F-18E/F/G, so it probably isn't worth it.

    The good news is an F-15SE would cost (roughly) about half as much as an F-35.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GGTharos View Post
    The non-political reality is that they are contemplating the 2 engine requirement which might be the thing that dooms the F-35. Personally I'd rather see F-35's in the RCAF than F-18Es, but that's just me.
    I really don't think the 2 engine requirement is an issue any more. It was 10 years ago, but I think a combination of current engine reliably, actually statistics involving 1 vs 2 engine mishaps (2 engines doesn't equal safe landing), and the reality that there is only one 5th generation fighter plane for sale and it only has one engine have resolved this issue.

    The RCAF has come out and said the it requires the F-35, that no other air plane can meet its current or future mission requirements. It's not the government who wants to spend more money on the F-35, I'm sure they'd be thrilled to order something less expensive.

    Quote Originally Posted by Stitch View Post
    I mentioned a while ago that Canada might want to consider the F-15SE since it, too, has two engines, but that would involve a whole different logistics train than the F-18E/F/G, so it probably isn't worth it.

    The good news is an F-15SE would cost (roughly) about half as much as an F-35.
    Regarding the F-18E or F-15SE .. I dunno. Yes, both options would be cheaper. I think the F-18E might come close to half price vs the F-35, but I think the F-15SE will be somewhere in the middle. That being said, I still think you have to look into the future, in 20 years how hard are F-15 parts going to be to come by, and will it still be relevant in a high-threat environment, and will it still be inter-operable with NATO allies in a strike package?

    If we had x amount of dollars to spend on fighters than I may be swayed to your point. But at this point it sounds like we are going to buy 65 F-XX's. So I would prefer to go with the aircraft that's going to be relevant for the next 40 years.

    I've always thought it would be sweet to have 48 F-18's (12 training, 24 F's, 12 G's) and 48 F-15's (12 training, 24 E's, and 12 SEAD/DEAD specialized). A pipe dream haha.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JA Boomer View Post
    I really don't think the 2 engine requirement is an issue any more.
    It still is. Can't really say more than you'll have to take my word for it if you want, I can't say more.

    Regarding the F-18E or F-15SE .. I dunno. Yes, both options would be cheaper. I think the F-18E might come close to half price vs the F-35, but I think the F-15SE will be somewhere in the middle. That being said, I still think you have to look into the future, in 20 years how hard are F-15 parts going to be to come by, and will it still be relevant in a high-threat environment, and will it still be inter-operable with NATO allies in a strike package?
    I believe the the 15SE burns more fuel for the 18E, which is also a consideration. Don't know about maintenance.

    I've always thought it would be sweet to have 48 F-18's (12 training, 24 F's, 12 G's) and 48 F-15's (12 training, 24 E's, and 12 SEAD/DEAD specialized). A pipe dream haha.
    Because it doubles the logistic chain, at minimum.

    Hopefully we'll get F-35's but they're not a done deal.

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    Senior Contributor SteveDaPirate's Avatar
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    How problematic has the lack of a 2nd engine been for the F-16? I tend to think of the F-35 fulfilling a similar role. Presumably, the more modern F-135 engine will enjoy better reliability than the F-110 that powers the F-16.

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    At least a dozen have been lost due to engine failure. Seems to happen every 3-5 years, just from following the local news (I live near 2 F-16 wings).

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    Quote Originally Posted by GGTharos View Post
    Because it doubles the logistic chain, at minimum.
    That's the biggest problem right there; even though both of them are Boeing products, both were originally developed by different companies (the F-15 by McDonnell-Douglas and the F-17/18 by Northrop), so almost everything is different on them (different engines, different avionics, different ejection seats, etc.) which would, as you say, double the logistics chain.
    "There is never enough time to do or say all the things that we would wish. The thing is to try to do as much as you can in the time that you have. Remember Scrooge, time is short, and suddenly, you're not there any more." -Ghost of Christmas Present, Scrooge

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