Page 1 of 1

SUU-20 Carriage

Unread postPosted: 19 May 2005, 16:26
by Safetystick

I'm fairly new to these forums but I'd really appreciate some help.

I'm trying to find out which pylons are used on the F-16 to carry the SUU-20 training pod, specifically if the centreline (STN 5) is used ROUTINELY to carry it.

I work for an Anglo-American company that is producing a non-pyro replacement for and I've been asked if the centre pylon is a likelly candidate. Being based in the UK I'm more used to CBLS on Harriers and Tornados so I figured it was best to ask the experts!

Appreciate any help you chaps can provide.

RE: SUU-20 Carriage

Unread postPosted: 19 May 2005, 17:31
by EriktheF16462
Sta 3 and 7. We never use 5 for SUU 20s. You could never get the BDUs on the jet.

RE: SUU-20 Carriage

Unread postPosted: 19 May 2005, 18:10
The SUU 20 is the four-shot rocket pod with the BDU capability isn't it? I thought I have seen those on sta 5, but I may have my airframes mixed up.

RE: SUU-20 Carriage

Unread postPosted: 19 May 2005, 19:34
by EriktheF16462
Yep right pod, but not on the centerline. We don't use the rockets on the Viper either. The interverlometer handle is removed or the entire part taken out. They are good place to loose a 5060 beer can though. Only 3 and 7 for my entire career. The C/L pylon is not even wired for a SUU20.

RE: SUU-20 Carriage

Unread postPosted: 19 May 2005, 20:37
by Loader
The SUU-20 can be flown on Sta 3, 4, 6, or 7. Not all 4 stations at once, but those 4 stations are cleared to fly it. Station 5, as Erik pointed out, is not cleared for the SUU. I too, during my weapons loading career, only put them on Sta 3 or 7. Never, ever a rocket in my time, and not sure who ever flew them out of a SUU, and as already pointed out, most F-16 bases (at least USAF) don't even keep the rocket system fully operational

RE: SUU-20 Carriage

Unread postPosted: 19 May 2005, 20:43
by falconfixer860261
There were probably concerns about rocket exhaust gas ingestion into the engine. Those rockets are also known to fly whatever direction they wanted and I don't think they'd want one FOD'ing out the only engine or ending up in the cockpit.....

Unread postPosted: 19 May 2005, 21:08
by MKopack
When I asked about the rockets back in the 80's I was told that not only was their direction of flight 'somewhat uncertain', but so was their 'timing'. Apparently there were cases of unintentional launches.


Unread postPosted: 19 May 2005, 21:14
that would be a hell of a suprize for a boom operator while they were tanking :-D

Unread postPosted: 19 May 2005, 21:16
by falconfixer860261
Rog - and I think they sometimes detonated prematurely....(no jokes please) :whistle:

Unread postPosted: 20 May 2005, 02:14
by drbob
With these pods the pilot will push the pickle button to drop BDU-33s and push the trigger when wanting to fire a rocket.

I have seen many pilots mix up this and shoot a rocket when a BDU was intended.

Unread postPosted: 20 May 2005, 07:59
by Safetystick
Ha! Cheers guys, that helps a lot.

Its about what I suspsected but I work smart store interfaces not practice bombs so I wasn't entirely sure. But at least my structural guys can save worrying abour an underfuselage clearance.

Got to admit, the boss was a bit bemused when I said I had put the question on a forum. He's suitable impressed now!

Cheers again. BTW, if anyone was interested in what this was for then cast your eyes over here: <a href="" target="_blank" rel="nofollow"></a>

Any time you guys need any help with MIL-STD-1760 interfaces or UK stuff I'll gladly repay the favour!

Unread postPosted: 20 May 2005, 13:12
by EriktheF16462
1760 interface, you should not get anything here about it. All questions about that system should be through official channels.

BTW, the USAF looked at replacing the SUU20 years ago, but cost savings could not be justified. The SUU is an OLD system, in fact the intervelometer steps then fires the station. Which translates to a long lag in the system. Short pickles by young pilots often lead to hung bombs. If you are working a new system, ensure that it is totally electric, requires no daily maintenance such as parts washing, is light enough for one person to carry, and does not use any pyro to get the bombs off the rack. Last off make them CHEAP but long lasting. It will take a great deal for the USAF to ever purchase a system to replace the SUU20. Also, weapons loaders HATE SUU20s but bean counters love them.

Unread postPosted: 20 May 2005, 18:31
by Safetystick
LOL, don't worry I like my job. 1760 would purely be public domain, general info stuff :)

With regards to the MALTS carrier:
Its electrical and non-pyrotechinc. It only gets serviced every six months (check spring tension) and the two and four station variants are light enough to carry when unloaded.

We've already got it in use with two Viper users so we're off to a fairly good start!

Unread postPosted: 20 May 2005, 18:56
by EriktheF16462
The USAF would only look at it if it could carry 6 BDU33s. We like getting as much training for the gas as we can. Really want to make something, make it mount to stations on a TER using the rocket plug for a connection. 3 stations on a TER with 4 bombs on each station, no carts, now that would be something. 12 BDUs on one station, whoa.

Unread postPosted: 25 May 2005, 17:11
by e6bill
Way back in the day at Cannon when the F-111's were there, I delivered many a BDU-33 and MK-106 for the SUU-20. The rocket tubes weren't functional then either. The front and rear of the tubes were cut back at an angle to "smooth" the contour, I guess. The outer edges were shaved off.

Here at Luke, the 310th FS flies 2.75's in LAU's.