MiG-29 vs F-16

Agreed, it will never be a fair fight but how would the F-16 match up against the ... ?
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parrothead

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Unread post13 Feb 2005, 03:26

Thanks for the correction, Tam :D !
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renatohm

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Unread post23 Feb 2005, 03:59

I will use here Sun Tzu's wise words: "If you know yourself and your enemy, you shall not fear the outcome of 100 battles. If you know yourself but not your enemy, then you will loose a battle for each victory. However, if you don't know yourself neither your enemy, then you will loose all of your battles."

Then, the Fulcrum is good at A and B, the Viper is good at X and Y... Any pilot correct me if I am wrong, but fighting an aircraft where it has advantages is halfway to death.

Cylon mentioned that the T-38 was able to defeat even the F/A-22 in a dogfight. And a single F/A-22, using its strong points - stealth, sensors and supercruise - was able to defeat 5 of the modern aircraft with better records, the F-15, in less than 3 min :!: And that where the Eagle has its edge, long range battle!

So, overall, the aircraft per se, not including avionics, weapons or pilot skills, the Fulcrum is more agile at some aspects and inferior at others. A good Viper pilot will refrain to fight when the Fulcrum has the edge, and will keep the battle on his/her own 'territory'.

In a gunfight, maybe the Viper cannot beat the Fulcrum, due to the LRMTS (Laser Rangefinder/Marked Targets Seeker). It allowns very precise rangefinding, far better than the radar. Also, the 30mm gun of the Fulcrum fires bigger shells, and I'm sure the Viper cannot survive to even a couple of them. The 20mm shells are smaller, and the accuracy of the gun is smaller, but the astonishing fire rate might counter these disadvantages. But the Viper has only 1 engine, so a stall means death, while the Fulcrum has 2, which enhances survivability. To add complexity to this little mental effort, the Viper has more fuel to burn...

Using modern WVR (Within Visual Range) HOBS (High Off-BoreSight) missiles + HMS (Helmet-Mounted Sights), the victory belongs to the pilot who sees first (which usually means fire first).

Surely, the Russian fighters' man-machine interface is cumbersome, but the pilots are used to it, and can do all functions without looking to the controls, then it might not be a real disadvantage in combat.

In BVR (Beyond Visual Range), the Viper wins, except if the publicly stated ranges are true - some 50 km for the AMRAAM, some 90 km for the RVV-AE). Newer Fulcrums have better radars, and can be vectored by AWACS, MiG-31 or Flankers, which further enhances its BVR capabilities.

In the air-to-surface arena, the Viper has tons of awesome weapons, but Fulcrum's options are increasing. Some Fulcrum's weapons are better than Viper's, others are not, but the JDAM is an excellent PGM (Precision Guided Munition), with a very good precision and relatively low cost.

As for the pilots... well, if any, only the Israelis see more action and/or have more flight hours than USAF nowadays. And nobody has the support planes USAF does.

So, if the fight is of Fulcrums (or any other fighter) from any air force, except Russia, they will win. And I hope we never see a US vs. Russia batlle...

Non-USAF Vipers vs. non-RuAF Fulcrums would be interesting to see, if from 'equivalent' versions, because an early export Fulcrum would be a sitting duck to an AMRAAM-capable Viper. But a Viper using only AIM-9L/M would be severely punished by Fulcrums using the R-73+HMS combo.

RuAF Fulcrum vs. a non-USAF Viper would also be nice to see, specially if Russia uses the latest RVV-AE (R-7, or 'AMRAAMSki')... Specially if the Viper has no AMRAAMs.
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CheckSix

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Unread post23 Feb 2005, 12:25

I can tell you RVV-AE range is about 45 to 55 km. AIM-120 seems to have the same range.
However, there is a RAM-Jet R-77M planned, which might have some 90km range.
AIM-120 maneuvrebility is somewhat questionable: small fins, no vector trust.
I guess, the european "Meteor" has the edge, having 110km range.
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agilefalcon16

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Unread post16 Mar 2005, 21:26

renatohm wrote:RuAF Fulcrum vs. a non-USAF Viper would also be nice to see, specially if Russia uses the latest RVV-AE (R-7, or 'AMRAAMSki')... Specially if the Viper has no AMRAAMs.


So basically, you want to see an updated Fulcrum vs. a handicapped Viper fight, right?
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renatohm

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Unread post19 Mar 2005, 18:00

agilefalcon16 wrote:
renatohm wrote:RuAF Fulcrum vs. a non-USAF Viper would also be nice to see, specially if Russia uses the latest RVV-AE (R-7, or 'AMRAAMSki')... Specially if the Viper has no AMRAAMs.


So basically, you want to see an updated Fulcrum vs. a handicapped Viper fight, right?


Why not? Many people have mentioned updated Vipers vs. handicapped Fulcrums... Why not the opposite?
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Unread post19 Mar 2005, 18:16

Why not? Many people have mentioned updated Vipers vs. handicapped Fulcrums... Why not the opposite?


Handicapped fulcrum? How?
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CheckSix

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Unread post22 Mar 2005, 13:03

yeahh,

the former german flucrums with derated engines and avionics, that represented the late 80s.
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Unread post06 May 2005, 11:54



toan, it is a good read on the 7 parts article. Though the RTAF made a disclaimer on the source is obtained from the internet, I thought the mention of the writer should be in proper. (By Easy Tartar, [source])

cheers,
Desmond
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Unread post07 May 2005, 10:35

KarimAbdoun wrote:The F-16 has proven itself to be one of the most remarkable piece of equipment flying in the sky, but what about its Soviet chief rival Mig-29?

What will be the concequenses of these 2 planes meeting head-to-head?

Also who is better? Fster? and had a better history than the other?

What are your opinions?


The MiG has better agility, better armament at close range (The Archer missiles!), it's bound to be a bit faster than the F-16.
  • MiG-29 Top Speed : 2,3 Mach
  • F-16 Top Speed : 2,05 Mach.
Source: <a href="http://www.milavia.net/users/fighterjets/aircraft/f16_fighting_falcon.php" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">milavia.com</a>

But it's sad that Mikoyan Gurevich didn't install a bigger fuel tank to the MiG. Wasn't it a interceptor, or was it a Low Cost Fighter?
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Unread post07 May 2005, 15:57

I'm bringing this back because it comes from the pilots of the different aircraft in question. It's a long thread, so I know how hard it can be to read the whole thing if you're new :wink: . I believe these guys. My $$$ is still on the Viper :thumb: !

parrothead wrote:Hey guys, I found a really interesting article on just this subject from Code One magazine.

Here's the link:

http://www.codeonemagazine.com/archives/1995/articles/jul_95/july2a_95.html

A couple of excerpts:

"The Fulcrum doesn't have the crisp movements of an F-16," Sparrow continued. "You need to be an octopus in the MiG-29 to work the avionics. Those German pilots have it tough. Just to get a simple lock on and fire a missile may take a half dozen hands-off switches or so. We can do the same with a flick of the thumb while we are looking at the HUD. F-16 pilots also have a significant sight advantage. A couple of hundred feet advantage can make a difference in air-to-air combat; the actual difference is more significant than that. MiG-29 pilots have a tough time checking their six o'clock. Their canopy rail is higher. They can lose sight of us even when flying BFM."


"Besides visibility, I expected better turning performance," McCoy continued. "The MiG-29 is not a continuous nine-g machine like the F-16. I tried to do some things I normally do in an F-16. For example, I tried a high-AOA guns jink. I got the Fulcrum down to about 180 knots and pulled ninety degrees of bank and started pulling heavy g's. I then went to idle and added a little rudder to get the jet to roll with ailerons. The pilot took control away from me in the middle of these maneuvers because the airplane was about to snap. I use the F-16's quick roll rate like this all the time with no problem.

"I also tried to do a 250-knot loop," McCoy recalled. "I went to mil power and stabilized. As I went nose high, I asked for afterburner. I had to hamfist the airplane a little as I approached the top of the loop. I was still in afterburner at about 15,000 feet and the jet lost control. The nose started slicing left and right. I let go of the stick and the airplane righted itself and went down. It couldn't finish the loop. In the F-16, we can complete an entire loop at 250 knots."


Like Sparrow, McCoy climbed out of the MiG-29 cockpit feeling better about the F-16, especially its automation. "The biggest instrument in the MiG-29 cockpit is the clock," McCoy said. "It took me a while to understand this. But a large clock is needed to keep track of the time after launching a missile. When they launch a missile, they have to consider their shot range and the type of missile they are shooting and estimate how long it will take to impact before firing. When they take a five-mile Alamo shot, for example, they have to calculate mentally the time required for the missile to reach its target so their radar can illuminate it for the duration. They fire and watch until they know when they can turn away. That procedure is a real disadvantage if they're flying against someone who shot a missile at them at about the same time.


"Before coming here, some of our pilots may have thought of the MiG's helmet-mounted sight as an end-all to a BFM fight," explained Lt. Col. Gary West, commander of the 510th. "We have found that it is not as lethal as we had expected.

We encountered some positions-particularly in an across-the-circle shot or a high-low shot and in a slow-speed fight-where a Fulcrum pilot can look up forty-five degrees and take a shot while his nose is still off. That capability has changed some of the pilots' ideas on how they should approach a MiG-29 in a neutral fight. Below 200 knots, the MiG-29 has incredible nose-pointing capability down to below 100 knots. The F-16, however, enjoys an advantage in the 200 knot-plus regime. At higher speeds, we can power above them to go to the vertical. And our turn rate is significantly better. By being patient and by keeping airspeed up around 325 knots, an F-16 can bring the MiG-29 to its nose. But the pilot must still be careful of the across-the-circle shot with that helmet-mounted sight.

"We have done very well on neutral BFM engagements," continued West. "We have tried single and two-circle fights, depending on how much lead turn we had at the merge. Without exception, we have been able to use finesse or power to an advantage after at least a couple of turns. I don't think any F-16 pilot has gotten defensive and stayed there. As always, and this applies to any airplane, success depends on who is flying."
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ACSheva

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Unread post07 May 2005, 16:28

I was still in afterburner at about 15,000 feet and the jet lost control.


This pilot doesn't sound like a good pilot, "loosing control".

"In a low-speed fight, fighting the Fulcrum is similar to fighting an F-18 Hornet," explained Capt. Mike McCoy of the 510th. "But the Fulcrum has a thrust advantage over the Hornet. An F-18 can really crank its nose around if you get into a slow-speed fight, but it has to lose altitude to regain the energy, which allows us to get on top of them. The MiG has about the same nose authority at slow speeds, but it can regain energy much faster. Plus the MiG pilots have that forty-five-degree cone in front of them into which they can fire an Archer and eat you up."


The engines have been extremely reliable," commented Raubbach. "It goes from afterburner to military power, without problems, at various speeds and under varying g conditions. I can feel the difference detuning makes only at higher speeds. We have many spare engines. We had a shortage at one time, but we now have a big supply. Engines do not represent a shortcoming for us."


If you take a new F-16, and put it up against a Russian SMT, I don't really see any advantage in either of jets. Both are very capable.

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Unread post07 May 2005, 20:06

Quote:

I was still in afterburner at about 15,000 feet and the jet lost control.



This pilot doesnt sound like a good pilot, "loosing control".


"I also tried to do a 250-knot loop," McCoy recalled. "I went to mil power and stabilized. As I went nose high, I asked for afterburner. I had to hamfist the airplane a little as I approached the top of the loop. I was still in afterburner at about 15,000 feet and the jet lost control. The nose started slicing left and right. I let go of the stick and the airplane righted itself and went down. It couldn't finish the loop. In the F-16, we can complete an entire loop at 250 knots."


Shev, he was trying a maneuver - a 250kt. loop in the MiG that he can do in the F-16. The MiG couldn't do what the F-16 could. Not a bad pilot, just a jet that wouldn't perform the same maneuver.
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Unread post07 May 2005, 20:28

But do you seriously think that the 29 cannot do what the 16 can? Im pretty sure it can. Its just probably that the 16 pilot wasnt very experienced in the Russian machine, or he didnt try hard enough. Like I said I love both the 16, and the 29s. Very capable jets. :D :lol:

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Unread post07 May 2005, 20:33

Not doubting that the MiG is capable of shooting down another aircraft, but I just don't think it can do a 250 knot loop like the F-16 :wink: .
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