Finnish DefMin Interest in F-35s NOT Gripens

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hornetfinn

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Unread post04 Sep 2020, 09:36

ricnunes wrote:
hornetfinn wrote:No I'm not confusing them but I wrote a little too vaguely. I meant to say that what you wrote was definitely true for the Winter War. Soviet forces were poorly trained, inexperienced and ill equipped.


Oh, I see. Since you quoted lbk000's post (and not mine) I assumed (wrongly) that you missed my reply to lbk000.


Yes, sorry for the confusion as my response could've definitely been better and clearer.

ricnunes wrote:
hornetfinn wrote:However during the Continuation War the Soviets got a lot better equipment, got better training, more experience and developed more sound tactics. Finnish Air Forces still managed about 8 to 9:1 ratio with all the fighter aircraft combined, including Brewsters, M.S 406s, P-36s and some other totally obsolete aircraft. With Bf 109 the exchange ratio was over twice that and naturally much worse with those less capable aircraft.


The period between the Winter War and the Continuation War happened during the beginning of WWII and from what I see a 'massive events' like World Wars (WWI and WWII) have huge impacts which among may other things results in extremely fast development of military equipment something which during peacetime would never happen just as fast. What I mean with this is that for example an aircraft which was a very good or top technology in 1939 it would be outright obsolete by 1941. An example of this would be the Spitfire Mk I which in 1939 was probably the best (or at least among the best) fighter aircraft of the period but by 1941 the Spitfire Mk I was obsolete, having being replaced by the more advanced Spitfire Mk V.
Obviously with the Brewster Buffalo the situation was similar - by 1939 it was a quite good aircraft (specially with the up-rated engines and without the heavy naval equipment) but by 1941 it was completely obsolete.


Definitely agree here. It's really difficult to understand how quick the development then really was. Brewster Buffalo was definitely a very good fighter in 1939 and better than any Soviet fighter at the time. Actually the best kill ratio was achieved in 1941 when the Soviets were still using the same obsolete aircraft. But that same year the Soviets started to get much better aircraft like Yak-1, MiG-1/3s and LaGG-3 into frontline service. So the technological advantage was taken away and actually was inverted until the introduction of Bf 109s.

Nice summary about Brewster Buffalo service in Finland:
https://www.warbirdforum.com/faf.htm

ricnunes wrote:
hornetfinn wrote:Bf 109G was about equal to the best Soviet aircraft like La-5 and Yak-9. But the Soviets had problems with pilot training and tactics.


Here I believe, I have to disagree a bit since and if I'm not mistaken the BF-109G was developed mainly as an interceptor or more precisely to intercept bombers such as the US heavy bombers B-17s and B-24s as well as British heavy bombers (namely the Lancaster) and was also developed as a fighter-bomber. For this the BF-109G was up-armed with more powerful weaponry (namely more powerful guns and cannons) and other equipment and also equipped with better armor. This meant that the BF-109G wasn't as a good dogfighter even compared to the earlier BF-109F and it was generally inferior at this compared to the La-5 and Yak-9.


IIRC there were rather many different subvariants of Bf 109Gs where they were optimized for different tasks. In Finnish service those cannons and some unnecessary equipment were often removed to lighten the aircraft and make them more maneuverable. Having heavier machine guns were good against tougher aircraft like Pe-2 and Il-2 which were used in large numbers against Finland. Late Soviet fighters were definitely more maneuverable than Bf 109s, but Finnish Air Force tactics was to avoid dogfighting and relied more on hit and run tactics (called Pendulum tactics) with great results. Of course a lot of close in dogfighting also happened but usually only after Finnish fighters made first attack. They often tried (and also managed) to kill the lead plane during the first pass to take out some unit cohesion from the Soviets. I think Bf 109G was still a very good fighter when used according to its strenghts. Basically like how US Navy pilots fought Japanese Zeros.

I think one main reason for those astonishing Finnish Air Force results were that they often managed to surprise the Soviets and strike first and thus gain initiative. According to Finnish Air Force analysis at the time, Soviet pilots were skilled in flying and maneuvring their aircraft and also brave. They however had poor understanding about when and why to maneuver their aircraft at different parts of the combat. They also had poor coordination and were poor shots on average.

I think that's also the aim now, although in totally different environment. I think 4th gen contenders with AESA radars, latest EW gear and Meteor or AIM-120 latest models would likely be able to make the first strike against current threat. However when the threat systems get AESA radars and equivalent missiles, that advantage will quickly evaporate. F-35 will have all the same advantages as the most advanced 4th gens, but will also bring some totally new capabilities. They will be much better at getting in the first strike (closer and probably totally surprising) and also avoid counterstrikes much longer.
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loke

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Unread post04 Sep 2020, 12:12

magitsu wrote:
BAE confirms that the ECRS Mk2 sensor has already been offered to Finland as part of a UK-led campaign promoting the Typhoon for its HX fighter requirement.

https://www.flightglobal.com/defence/uk ... 35.article

Aka CAPTOR-E. ECRS Mk1 has been ordered for Germany and Spain early this year. The UK is going for Mk2, so it's not surprising that BAe offers that to Finland as well.

https://des.mod.uk/raf-typhoon-radar-developed/
https://world.eurofighter.com/articles/ ... w-horizons
(more about it)

"In-development radar" is the funny part when remembering CAPTOR-E's saga with EF.
BAE Systems will lead work to integrate the Leonardo UK-developed European Common Radar System (ECRS) Mk2 sensor, with flight-test activities due to commence in 2022 and initial operational capability targeted for 2025.

(from the flightglobal article)

I did not see anywhere stated whether it's GaS or GaN; however the focus on EA and "wide-band" capability makes me wonder if it's actually GaN... Saab has presented a GaN fighter jet radar already, and I would be surprised if Leonardo would be behind Saab in this respect.

The Typhoon offered to Finland seems to become more capable than what I previously believed -- nevertheless it cannot compete against the F-35 of course, and most likely will be quite far behind also the SH/Growler, even with this new and very powerful antenna.
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magitsu

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Unread post04 Sep 2020, 12:25

Wow, this might have indications related to Finland too. Growler was also reportedly offered to UAE. :shock:
https://www.nytimes.com/2020/09/03/us/p ... apons.html
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loke

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Unread post04 Sep 2020, 14:26

magitsu wrote:Wow, this might have indications related to Finland too. Growler was also reportedly offered to UAE. :shock:
https://www.nytimes.com/2020/09/03/us/p ... apons.html

What do you mean by "this might have indications related to Finland too"?
Last edited by loke on 04 Sep 2020, 17:57, edited 1 time in total.
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ricnunes

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Unread post04 Sep 2020, 16:03

hornetfinn wrote:Nice summary about Brewster Buffalo service in Finland:
https://www.warbirdforum.com/faf.htm

IIRC there were rather many different subvariants of Bf 109Gs where they were optimized for different tasks...


I fully agree with your last post hornetfinn!

And by the way, thanks for the link about the Brewster Buffalo service in Finland :thumb:
“Active stealth” is what the ignorant nay sayers call ECM and pretend like it’s new.
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magitsu

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Unread post04 Sep 2020, 18:21

loke wrote:What do you mean by "this might have indications related to Finland too"?

Possible new user and participator to development of both Growler and NGJ (perhaps also AARGM-ER type weapons, as UAE isn't stingy). Also chance to assess the proliferation of such tech (how long edge might last, because Israel would have to step up their game) and other feelings from the sales release process.
Some positive and negative effects. Mostly probably former. Since it would be good to bundle new build order with another buyer. Though Germany is already on the cards.
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hornetfinn

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Unread post08 Sep 2020, 14:21

While slightly off-topic, there is a very nice video of Finnish Hornet doing a touch and go on a road base in Lapland:

https://twitter.com/i/status/1303316699907788800
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hornetfinn

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Unread post09 Sep 2020, 09:45

Just found this great video about F-35 for the Finnish HX competition from Lockheed Martin and I have not seen it here before and could not find it posted here before:



Too bad it's in Finnish only, but the video is still well worth watching. It's very well made and shows some interesting details about how F-35 is constructed and how it works. For example there is interesting AN/APG-81 and EO DAS footage. Another interesting one is showing F-35 dropping It seems to be aimed at professionals and knowledgeable enthusiasts as it's filled with description of the systems and technologies.
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hornetfinn

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Unread post09 Sep 2020, 10:09

magitsu wrote:LM's social media campaign page for this weekend's air show.
https://f35.com/global/participation/fi ... anslate/fi

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7kthgTNzHws

Most selling points from the video translated:

Need for less planes vs. 4 gen strike package
Difference between 4 gen and 5 gen described similar as between landline & smartphone
Ability to shoot first
Mechanical 4g radars vs. APG-81 1000 tr electronical scanning, more power, identifies further
SAR
Sharing of the situational picture, relaying targeting data
APG-81's stand-off jamming
6x IR-cameras IRST, missile warning, 360 situational awareness, projecting data to helmet visor
Less workload, no multiple screens or mental processing required for IFF
MADL comms without radio

Basically most things crammed into one video. Maybe a bit too much in terms of effective communication?

They are not customizing these enough. For example they should downplay the A2G features when Finland and especially Finnish general population are not accustomed to it. Fewer selling points, more visible localization!
Kick the engineer out of planning meeting and bring in someone who understands that joes just need one or few reasons to like it. Where's the PERSONALITY?!? Have they really not understood that Morten *Dolby' Hanche has been basically their number one salesman in Europe? Similar approach would work here. LM's North and Yung Le did ok last summer but why not go big?


Ok, so this was already posted by magitsu several years ago but video did have different ID. Too bad, but still good video. I agree with magitsu that should've done another video just for marketing the product.
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magitsu

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Unread post09 Sep 2020, 15:27

Luckily they at least understood to feature Billie Flynn and the pitch of "best fighter for parents, bringing their boys and girls back home from every fight".
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hornetfinn

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Unread post10 Sep 2020, 06:23

Agreed, featuring Billie Flynn has been a good choice. I think they should really also do a video of F-35s doing an actual multi-role mission showcasing its unique capabilities but without going too much into technology. Basically what the Eurofighter team did with their one HX video.
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loke

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Unread post10 Sep 2020, 13:28

https://breakingdefense.com/2020/09/hou ... -jeopardy/

If this really happens (I doubt it will); then would this affect F-35/SH sales to Finland?
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magitsu

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Unread post10 Sep 2020, 13:33

Seems alarmist due to proposed size of change. Let's wait until after the election to see if it's still relevant.
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magitsu

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Unread post10 Sep 2020, 19:37

Nice overview video to road base ops:
https://twitter.com/FinnishAirForce/sta ... 9197891586

Quite light setup.
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loke

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Unread post14 Sep 2020, 07:10

The Pentagon's five-year budget plan for the F-35 falls short by as much as $10 billion, the military's independent cost analysis unit has concluded, a new indication that the complex fighter jet may be too costly to operate and maintain.

The Defense Department's blueprint for the next five fiscal years calls for requesting $78 billion for research and development, jet procurement, operations and maintenance and military construction dedicated to the F-35 built by Lockheed Martin Corp. But the cost analysis unit estimates $88 billion will be needed.

He added that the projected cost increase isn't due to any expected major increase in the unit cost of the aircraft. In fact, the cost analysis office projects that the average procurement cost for an F-35, including its engines, is dropping from a planned $109 million to $101.3 million in 2012 dollars. By contrast, it found that estimated support costs once the planes are built have increased about 7% over a 2012 estimate.

https://www.stripes.com/news/us/pentago ... 5-1.644700

It seems the support costs of the F-35 is still an issue...
https://www.stripes.com/news/us/pentago ... 5-1.644700
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