Is English Electric Lightning the best fighter of the 50-60s

Cold war, Korea, Vietnam, and Desert Storm - up to and including for example the A-10, F-15, Mirage 200, MiG-29, and F-18.
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f-16adf

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Unread post11 Jul 2018, 16:51

I do not know if the F-4J had a different BLC vs the USAF Phantoms (Outlaw did you fly the C/D?)


The book is taken from Satrapa's own quotes (first person). He was known for flying to the edge.



Point is even other USN pilots statements agree with Satrapa's concerning F-4 v F-8.

CDR Chesire: "When I first arrived in the fighter community, the F-8s were routinely beating up the F-4s. This was not so much that the F-8 was a better fighter. It just meant that the F-4 drivers just were not trained in dogfighting, like the F-8 guys were. That all changed with TOPGUN, F-4 pilots then learned to use their advantages and strike the weaknesses of the F-8. Then the F-4 more often held the upper hand. And that was long before the F-4S."
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outlaw162

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Unread post11 Jul 2018, 19:27

same BLC system in the J as the B, N, & C/D or any hard wing. initial purpose was to get on the boat slower.

slatted E was first without any BLC and USAFR/ANG had TE flap BLC system capped off on C/D to cut down on Mx. The bleed air lines were notorious. Not a big USAFR/ANG requirement to get on a boat, no cold beer. :D

Flying on the edge is all well and good and credit where credit is due of course....flying at extreme AOA and very low speeds in a very close in scissors type maneuver in the Phantom, the real concern was minimal control effectiveness to counter momentum and avoid a collision with the other guy. I've been there and fortunately we missed each other. :shock:

That's not flying on the edge.....that's flying on the 'stupid'.....but I was young with more pride than skill and knew everything.

(Flew in the Reserves with an ex VX-4 Tomcat driver who flew in AIMVAL/ACEVAL and had flown with Hoser. Had nothing but the best to say about his skill.)

I utilized MMF (manual maneuvering flaps) at times in every fighter I flew (100, 105, F4 and A-7 until slufs were modded with AMF) except the Viper which had everything for max performance built in as standard equipment, What a wonderful machine.

best fighter of the 50-60s ? The F-105 had the most gun kills.
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sprstdlyscottsmn

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Unread post11 Jul 2018, 19:45

outlaw162 wrote:best fighter of the 50-60s ? The F-105 had the most gun kills.

More than all other types combined IIRC.
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zero-one

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Unread post11 Jul 2018, 19:50

Holygwackaskamoly! This SOB can turn, feel the raw power... how could a F-8 gun an F-4? Then in our slow speed (125-140 knots) rolling scissors that followed, the pitch rate was phenomenal, lateral control was a piece of cake, both J-79's in full blower. I thought to myself "Geez Leweez" how in the world was the F-8 able to kick butt on the Phantom?

But I always thought the F-4's weakness was it couldn't turn. It had to fight vertical.

Just curious, did anyone here fly F-4s then transitioned to F-15s or F-16s or any other fighter made with E-M as top priority? How was it like?
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f-16adf

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Unread post11 Jul 2018, 19:56

Most kills by USN Phantoms and Crusaders were with Aim-9D/G. It seemed like the USAF B/E Sidewinder was much less accurate.
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f-16adf

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Unread post11 Jul 2018, 20:07

As far as hard wing vs slatted wing Phantoms. The Navy guys with TOPGUN flew the Phantom to the limit, maybe the USAF guys didn't so much.

The slatted F-4 turned better and was judged more "idiot" proof vs the high AOA/adverse yaw vices of the hard wing Phantom. Yet a Marine Corp pilot (actually the XO) of VMFA-232 said that the N/J were less draggy than the slatted S. And had to be flown "well".
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southernphantom

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Unread post11 Jul 2018, 20:34

Reportedly, the slats cost about 80kts of airspeed, and caused a very minor reduction in instantaneous turn performance. The benefit was in sustained turn performance, and in greatly improving the Phantom's low-speed/high-AOA handling characteristics. I may be wrong, but I believe the slats virtually eliminated the adverse yaw problem in that flight regime.
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outlaw162

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Unread post11 Jul 2018, 20:36

on the first 1v1 (2 F-4's) against Smash


But I always thought the F-4's weakness was it couldn't turn


Hoser is fighting F-4 v F-4, Hoser (w un-credited RIO) v Smash (w un-credited RIO), mano v mano......it's all relative. I 'spect they both had some flaps down. :D

I went from the F-4 to the F-16 and thought I'd won the lottery. I can imagine the guys that went from the A-7 to the Viper thought they had died and gone to heaven......

.....and then there's the 419th AFRES guys who went from the F-105 to the Viper. :shock:

The Navy guys with TOPGUN flew the Phantom to the limit, maybe the USAF guys didn't so much


That's a little harsh. We had a couple ex TOPGUN F-4 drivers in our reserve unit who weren't any more skillful than ex USAF FWIC guys and on any given day less skillful. They did however often point out that they were superior on paper. I flew with an ex TOPGUN F-4 guy in the Tucson ANG in the F-100. He was good but not even close in BFM to the the 2-3000+ hour Hun drivers. It's the old experience bell curve.
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f-16adf

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Unread post11 Jul 2018, 21:20

Outlaw,

My apologies, I did not intend to imply that USN/MC pilots are "superior" vs USAF pilots. Back in the late 1980's (88-90) I was fortunate to go to 191FIG base ops on many occasions. Since the F-4 Phantom was (and still is) my all time favorite jet I would always ask these ANG pilots questions about their ride. It seemed like some pilots liked the Phantom (granted they were old F-4D's) and some not so much.

Conversely, the Marine Corp and Navy aviators (2 spoken personally, and a couple by email) generally had a different story to tell. They usually, if not always had wonderful things to say about the F-4 Phantom. I have always found this to be rather perplexing, if not strange.


I understand that the Phantom had its vices. All jets do. But going back to 1960's Vietnam, If the USAF never had the Phantom, and relied strictly on the Century Series. I just seriously doubt the outcome would have been any different especially concerning the air to air war. Maybe with the exception of the Hun (which I think technically had the first A-A kill) the others 101, 102, 104 (sans 105, to a point) all performed underwhelmingly for the air to air role. I doubt ADC F-106's would have fared any differently (no gun, Falcon missiles, huge target, elevon issues 20K and under, poor cockpit visibility) or even the F-5A. The NVAF Mig-17/19/21's probably would still have eaten them for lunch.
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basher54321

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Unread post12 Jul 2018, 00:38

That lot cant compete with the F-4 as a system, its combined A-A and A-G loadout and speed. Most of Vietnam involved dropping a lot of bombs to account for the 20 mile CEP. :P

F-100 always stated as being too slow to escort the F-105s - so without F-4s, F-104 preferable maybe in an escort role - but small payload.

RF-101C was the only Voodoo in SEA I think.

F-105s did alright but also may have had the most MiG encounters (especially in RT) - about 26 claims out of maybe 140 engagements.

The F-5C was used to CAP up North a few times apparently but no payload or speed.
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Unread post12 Jul 2018, 00:44

ADF,

no apology required.......I'm a Guard guy. :D

I think you're historically correct that the Navy guys were more adept at employing the aircraft initially. No doubt the Miramar training was intense, purposeful, effective and necessary.

At the end though, if you look at the exchange ratio for only dedicated A2A F-4 assets, the USAF trailed the Navy by a minimal amount, both within a couple of tenths. Of course this is no consolation to the strikers.

(Of course an accountant has ways of making things look better....or worse than they actually are.)

What we do know is that the only Navy F-4 pilot ace is a convicted felon and the only USAF F-4 pilot ace is reputed to be a convicted ego-maniac....not that I could blame him.
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Unread post12 Jul 2018, 01:32

With a mustache that awesome? I think his stache has 5 confirmed kills.
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Unread post12 Jul 2018, 01:47

So how would British jets like Hunter and Lightning have fared in the same environment? I'm thinking the lack of range probably hindered any of their potential upsides. What about the Spey-powered F-4? The F-8 was basically using a Spey-derivative, right?
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f-16adf

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Unread post12 Jul 2018, 02:22

127TFW Huns from back in the day :D
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garrya

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Unread post12 Jul 2018, 02:44

f-16adf wrote:even the F-5A. The NVAF Mig-17/19/21's probably would still have eaten them for lunch.

I kinda doubt that, F-5A is superior to Mig-17 in every single aspect except deceleration, it is quite equal to Mig-21
l8f4HAC.png


F-5E vs various Mig-21 versions http://www.checksix-fr.com/wp-content/u ... s-F-5E.pdf

Comparision of aircraft in VietNam war against Mig-21
F-5N vs Mig-21F
X3Oxufm.png


F-8U vs Mig-21F
yt8bMlp.png


F-104 vs Mig-21F
mdKihxJ.png


F-105 vs Mig-21F
F-105 vs mig-21.JPG


F-111 vs Mig-21F
F-111 vs Mig-21.JPG


F-100 vs Mig-21F
F-100D vs Mig-21.JPG


F-4 vs Mig-21
F-4 vs Mig-21.JPG
Last edited by garrya on 12 Jul 2018, 03:51, edited 1 time in total.
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