First USAF F-16C in AMARC

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Jon

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Unread post19 Sep 2007, 14:48

More photos:


First USAF F-16C #84-1260 at AMARC parked under a sun shelter arrived with F-16C #84-1295 both from the 119th FS on September 18th, 2007. [Photo by Philip Kovaric]


First USAF F-16C #84-1295 retired AMARC along with F-16C #84-1260 which were both from the 119th FS, seen here shortly after arrival on September 18th, 2007. [Photo by Philip Kovaric]


Anyone know what squadrons are retiring block 30/32s in the coming days and are there still plans to retire block 42s and what the squadrons are?

News article: <a href="news_article2518.html">First USAF F-16C in AMARC</a>
Last edited by Jon on 26 Mar 2008, 02:39, edited 2 times in total.
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Lajes

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Unread post19 Sep 2007, 16:29

I just wonder how many hours they clocked up in their 22 years service, and exactly what was the reason for withdrawal (reached expected end of life, before that, fatigue, etc.)

It would be nice to know as it would be a good lesson on life expectancy.

Thanks,

Lajes
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SixerViper

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Unread post20 Sep 2007, 16:08

Money and politics. That's all.
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Goodwin

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Unread post20 Sep 2007, 18:39

Lajes wrote:I just wonder how many hours they clocked up in their 22 years service, and exactly what was the reason for withdrawal (reached expected end of life, before that, fatigue, etc.)

It would be nice to know as it would be a good lesson on life expectancy.

Thanks,

Lajes


I have thought how nice it would be to have a section in the Aircraft Database to list the airframe hours of notable F-16's that have reached 4000, 5000, 6000 or more flight hours from countries owning such.

My personal guess is that those 2 F-16C's probably have 4,500 to 5,000 hours if they flew 250 hours a year on average for 22 years. If they are in good shape and structurally sound for another 2000 or more flight hours, they could be on the way to a foreign air force as an attrition replacement. Expect to see more F-16C's go like used cars as customers around the world descend on DM to pick the fleet apart for choice pickings.

But it all depends on how willing the US State Department is in releasing permission for those airframes to be transferred.

Reason why they are being retired is because the USAF needs to find dollars to help fund more F-22's, F-35's, a new tanker, more C-17's if they can persuade Congress to add for 10 extra this month and a new CSAR rescue helicopter. Older assets such as the F-16 burn up dollars in fuel and maintenance costs.

Most of the initial C models will probably be designated as war reserve items to be kept intact in case of a national emergency requiring their immediate reactivation from DM.

Goodwin
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Boman

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Unread post20 Sep 2007, 20:29

Most likelly they will have passed well beyond 6000hrs.

Just about all the Vipers currently in use almost anywhere in the world has received the Falcon Star/UP updates, allowing them to fly to atleast 6000 or more. Some may go as high as 8000 hours, although non has reached this to date.

As for these beeing sold of to other countries, I doubt it. Firstly, these are first-generation Charlige/Delta models. Secondly they are life-expired or the AF would have keep them on longer. Third they are becoming more expensive in maintenance than newer models. Fourth; they have very little hours left on the airframe making it worth while upgrading and selling to foreign users.

When you look at A/B-models that have been sold to other countries in comparison, they have 4,000-5,000 hours on the airframe, wich is significantly more than when an airframe has passed 6,000 hrs. These are also upgrade to last atleast 8,000 hours, wich means doubling the lifespan.

A funny side note;
These first Charlies to be retired are both FY84-aircraft. However, FY83-Charlies still fly on. Now that's where I would like to see the airframe hours :shock:
Best regards
Niels
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Purplehaze

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Unread post20 Sep 2007, 21:28

I would love to know what the high time block 50's have. They must be over 5000
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Henrik

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Unread post20 Sep 2007, 23:34

Hello all,

A sad day indeed to witness the retirement of the first USAF F-16Cs!! Regarding flight hours the USAF operated Block-25/30/32s have in general between 4000 - 6000+ hours and the Block-40/42s and -50/52s are not that far behind!!

Having recently visited some of the F-16 units in the USAF I strongly believe that the future F-16 line-up in the various ANG/AFRC units will comprise GE powered aircraft exclusively. If You think about it many current Block-25 units are converting to Block-30s (Atlantic City, New Jersey and Ft. Wayne, IN) while others take over UAV missions.

Although the Block-32s have recently found their way into the CA ANG I would not be surprised of the 144th FW in Fresno in a couple of years gave these Pratt-powered machined up for a different GE-powered Block - or even a new type of aircraft (F-15s??).

Just speculation on my side, of cause, but with the exceptions of the ANG units in Tulsa, OH, Toledo, OH and McIntyre, SC, most Pratt-engined Vipers will be gone from "frontline" ANG units within a few years!!

The AFRC has already standardized on Block-30s in their two remaining units with own aircraft - the 301st in Texas and the 482nd FW in Florida.

For the time being Block-25s and Block-42s will be found in training units in Tuscon and Luke AFB, AZ - both in Arizona.

Even Block-42s are very likely to be found in AMARG in the not so distant future.

In total around 72 of the Luke AFB, AZ based Block-42s will receive the CCIP upgrade as well as the 50+ Block-42s operated in the Toledo, OH and Tulsa, OK guard units. The guard Block-42s will also within the next couple of years have received the P&W F100-229 engines known from the Block-52 series.

Block-30s continuing operational service in the ANG/AFRC will see major upgrades to their radars in a few years time signaling an extended service life to around 2018-20.

Greetings,

Henrik.

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