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Mig29 & SU27

Fri Mar 25, 2005 9:59 pm

To all:

Is the MiG 29 still in production? It seems that in all of the current fighter a/c competitions, Russia is fielding Su 27 variants for possible orders and the success that the Russians have had i.e., China, India, Vietnam, ect. have involved the Sukhoi fighter.

These both seem such formidable a/c. Has the MiG design bureau fallen afoul of Russian poilitics or is the Russian Air Force becoming an all SU 27 force?

Any of our Russian friends out there to elaborate?


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RE: Mig29 & SU27

Sat Mar 26, 2005 12:05 am

The SU-27 has been more successful because it is better able to be modified to dual role for life as a strike fighter. It is also larger and faster than the MiG-29. If we were to compare the two a/c to US aircraft the MiG would be closer to the F-16 and the Sukhoi closer to the F-15.

Su has earned more orders, but MiG still has life in it with some orders from India for its carrier force.
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RE: Mig29 & SU27

Sat Mar 26, 2005 12:53 am

There was a sentence buried in either Av Week or Flight International recently that said that the MiG-29 has been out of production since 1991. All foreign sales are now drawing off Russian Air Force stocks.
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RE: Mig29 & SU27

Sat Mar 26, 2005 5:29 am

When the MiG-29 came out I remember all the 'experts' comparing it to our F-18 in size and performance.

And though comparing the F-15 and the Su-27 isn't a stretch... the 27 is quite a bit larger. I have pictures of them flying formation and the size difference is appreciable.
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RE: Mig29 & SU27

Sat Mar 26, 2005 10:33 am

The MiG-29 has indeed been out of production for a number of years. As a matter of fact, the RuAF's restructuring plan (well, one of their many restructuring plans) calls for the complete elimination of the -29 from RuAF stock. The Su-27s on the other hand are to be heavily modernized. As said above, there are plenty of used Fulcrums to go around, so most marketing efforts concentrate on either the upgrade of existing airframes or sale of as-is examples to those less discriminating customers.

The Fulcrum has always been plagued by two fundamental problems: its short range and its very mission-specific avionics suite. The comparison with the F-16 and F/A-18 did it little good, as it is an altogether different concept, that can't compete with the aforementioned American fighters in terms of multi-mission versatility. Worse yet, no one has ever had the chance (or desire) to use the airframe 'properly' in combat.

The Su-27 is clearly a superior airplane, but that comes at the price of having a much larger airframe, and much more sophisticated/complicated systems, the latter being the reason why it took so long for the Flanker to finally enter full operational service with the former Red Airforce. This superiority over the Fulcrum was made official when the two squared off in combat, the -27 came out on top, shooting down 5-7 Fulcrums at no Flankers lost. All in WVR (knife-) fights too.

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