Why is the F-35 replacing the A-10?

Discuss the F-35 Lightning II
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durahawk

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Unread post05 May 2016, 18:03

spazsinbad wrote:
F-35 vs. A-10: Air Force Test Pilot Weighs In
05 May 2016 Lara Seligman
The F-35 will have the same advantages of the F-15 — that it can get to a target faster than the A-10, and it also has a bigger gun, Chari noted.

“I’m not downplaying the A-10, it’s an awesome platform, but it’s also — you have to know the role it can fit in,” Chari said."

Source: http://www.defensenews.com/story/defens ... /83961964/


Ummmm... Wat? But... But... (Cue ACDC) THE A-10 HAS THE BIGGEST GUNZ OF DEM ALL!
(Oh really...? The AC-130 folks would say)

I'm going to give Chari the benefit of the doubt and read this as a misquote of F-15E (20mm) < F-35 (25mm), an accurate statement.
Last edited by durahawk on 05 May 2016, 22:23, edited 2 times in total.
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sprstdlyscottsmn

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Unread post05 May 2016, 18:18

durahawk wrote:
(Oh really...? The AC-130 folks would say)


30mm (same ammo as GAU-8)
105mm Howitzer (because.... 'Murica?)
assorted GPS and LG munitions (approx 18)
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vanshilar

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Unread post05 May 2016, 20:18

Um the gun quote is now:

In current operations against the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria, commanders use a variety of platforms to perform CAS: the A-10, the F-15, the B-1 bomber and unmanned MQ-9 Reapers. The F-35 will have the same advantages of the F-15 — that it can get to a target faster than the A-10, Chari said, also noting that the F-35 has a bigger gun than the F-15.


It's entirely possible that it's the writer that mangled the quote, and they just cleared it up.
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Unread post05 May 2016, 23:19

You have to be old to remember, but the F-15 was originally intended to have a 25 mm 6-barrel cannon (GAU-7) with caseless ammo. Didn't work.
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Unread post06 May 2016, 01:28

johnwill wrote:You have to be old to remember, but the F-15 was originally intended to have a 25 mm 6-barrel cannon (GAU-7) with caseless ammo. Didn't work.


Is that why it carries so many rounds comparitive to other teen fighters?
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johnwill

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Unread post06 May 2016, 03:26

Sounds reasonable to me, but I really don't know,
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Unread post06 May 2016, 04:07

XanderCrews wrote:
johnwill wrote:You have to be old to remember, but the F-15 was originally intended to have a 25 mm 6-barrel cannon (GAU-7) with caseless ammo. Didn't work.


Is that why it carries so many rounds comparitive to other teen fighters?


Has an F-15 ever made a gun kill?
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Unread post06 May 2016, 04:15

tincansailor wrote:
XanderCrews wrote:
johnwill wrote:You have to be old to remember, but the F-15 was originally intended to have a 25 mm 6-barrel cannon (GAU-7) with caseless ammo. Didn't work.


Is that why it carries so many rounds comparitive to other teen fighters?


Has an F-15 ever made a gun kill?

In Israeli service, yes. The Combat debut of the Eagle resulted in Sparrow, Sidewinder, and Cannon kills
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Unread post06 May 2016, 04:42

sprstdlyscottsmn wrote:... the Eagle resulted in Sparrow, Sidewind.er, and Cannon kills

I thought if was a Python kill?
"When a fifth-generation fighter meets a fourth-generation fighter—the [latter] dies,”
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Unread post06 May 2016, 05:12

popcorn wrote:
sprstdlyscottsmn wrote:... the Eagle resulted in Sparrow, Sidewind.er, and Cannon kills

I thought if was a Python kill?

You may be right about that. I had it mentally logged as "radar, heater, and gun" and I, in truly American fashion, assumed they were all US made.
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Unread post06 May 2016, 05:53

Gums wrote:
I flew with Brit and USN exchange pilots in the Sluf and Viper. They seemed to like the USAF display that raised the AoA "bracket" when you pulled back and lowered it when pushing forward. Had to do with "increasing AoA makes the doofer go "up" and decreasing makes it go down". The indexer was same concept, so follow the wedge thingies to keep the middle light on.


I'd actually say the exact opposite (about the HUD bracket convention), but that is entirely personal opinion. I thought for a minute about why, and couldn't think of anything better than it is different than what I grew up on. So I wouldn't say one is better than the other. I will say there are times I have to stop and think about the fact that I am actually not slow, but rather fast. Luckily there is the AoA tape on the instrument panel for guys like me to reference when they get confused. As for indexers, I just turn them off………way too wrong to be anything other than an SA suck……..wrong colors, wrong chevron convention/mech, mucho confusing to a Navy guy used to the Hornet and our indicators (I'd imagine the SLUF was the same).
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spazsinbad

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Unread post06 May 2016, 06:26

Yes it is confusing to 'standardised Navy people' for AoA Indexer to see other 'styles'. Nice thing about the F-35 family is that everything is the same - so to speak - so as to be less confusing all round. Symbology, colours on TSD etc. all same.
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hornetfinn

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Unread post06 May 2016, 07:57

I find it amazing how some aircraft get some mythical status in people's minds and nothing, not even facts and opinions from users can change this. A-10 is definitely one of those aircraft and I can't belive how much effort and money has been wasted because of that. It is definitely an impressive aircraft with great service but times and threat environments change and keeping A-10 around for much longer seems very illogical to me (in my best Mr. Spock voice 8) ). Like a lot of knowledgeable people have said, it's now pretty much confined to low threat environments and there the job can be (and has been) done with almost anything. Developing a new A-10 like aircraft would be a massive waste in every level IMO.
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Unread post06 May 2016, 08:09

jessmo111 wrote:MD I know I sound nostalgic for the old F-117 birds. Was it really a hanger queen like they say? If you needed cruise bomb truck, you can get a lot closer in a F-117 than a F-16. Some say that it was a nightmare to maintain the skin.


It was indeed a cool program to be involved in, very small community and revolutionary in technology. The jet wasn't a hangar queen, but did take a fair amount of maintenance man hours. The skin.....the RAM coating....was indeed a bear because being first generation, it was older technology. It came in sheets which had to be cut to fit, glued into place, and allowed to cure for a fair number of hours. It would flake/peel inflight, which Is why you'd see somewhat ratty-looking F-117s, as there was no need to maintain the RAM perfectly just for stateside flying. For deployments, the RAM would be touched up and perfected, in accordance with the RCS of that particular tail number. To access panels or make major repairs, the RAM would have to be removed to access a particular panel or panels, the panels accessed and repairs made, then the panels replaced and the RAM cut/fitted/glued into place along with drying time. Just became a lot of maintenance man hours per flight hour.
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blindpilot

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Unread post06 May 2016, 19:29

hornetfinn wrote:I find it amazing how some aircraft get some mythical status in people's minds and nothing, not even facts and opinions from users can change this. A-10 is definitely one of those aircraft ...Like a lot of knowledgeable people have said, it's now pretty much confined to low threat environments and there the job can be (and has been) done with almost anything....


I stirred up a bee's nest the last time I pointed this out, but what the hey ...

I don't know what JTACs would do .. since (gums correct me if I'm wrong) I don't think we had no Joint Tacks back in our day before Goldwater-Nichols. I always thought it was just Air FACs or Ground FACs, at least so it seemed on the radios at 35,000 ft ... No lasers either, just pretty colored smoke from pop guns ...

Any way Gums can correct any faulty memory on my part, but there are two edges of the question being pushed from both sides. The first we pretty much agree on. In high threat environments, the A-10 will not likely come home, or at least as with DS, the commanders will stop sending them in at low levels. Now-a-days even that has its own risks from double digits.

But the second side is of importance when considering the usefulness of the A-10 as well. LOW THREAT. I stand by my statement that the Brigade level FAC on the ground can and, in the past definitely has "sent the A-10's home," because in very low threat environments, AK-47's and RPG's in pickup trucks, the big gun is a dangerous tool to use for the farmers and friendlies walking on the roads. At some point in low threat environments, the A-10 has too much (anti tank) firepower and helicopters/COIN or precision(drone hellfires) weapons are the better alternative. The old low speed low altitude gun attack tends to throw stray ordinance on friendlies at times. Low threat environments have better options now.

So we agree the A-10 is not good for high threat areas. I assert that with precision weapons available from altitude, the A-10 is also not good for very low threat. So this leaves not only a single purpose aircraft type, but a very thin band of usefulness within that type. If we had the money ... well .. we could have two dozen types of special mission aircraft .... but.... about that money thing..

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