JakeOrion
Topic Author
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Rumor: New RAH-66 Comanche Funding

Wed Sep 05, 2007 12:51 am

Over Labor Day, I was at a BBQ with some friends and met a Marine who currently flies/maintains the helicopter fleet; everything from the Cobra to the CH-53s.

***Everything from this point on I believe is bullsh*t, but I'm looking for a second opinion.***

To make a long story short, we started to talk about impressive/wicked helicopters and the Comanche came up. He told me he has a uncle who works in the Pentagon. His uncle explained to him that around 6 months ago the Comanche has received the green light to obtain funding again. Supposedly, development finally got its act together and could finish the project with a somewhat limited budget. (What that budget is he didn't say.)

Again, I am skeptical but I was curious if anyone would know anything about this rumor?
Every problem has a simple solution; finding the simple solution is the difficult problem.
 
Lumberton
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RE: Rumor: New RAH-66 Comanche Funding

Wed Sep 05, 2007 3:47 am

AFAIK, there is nothing in the FY 08 budget for the Comanche. It's still dead.
"When all is said and done, more will be said than done".
 
dl021
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RE: Rumor: New RAH-66 Comanche Funding

Wed Sep 05, 2007 5:16 am

They've already spent the Comanche money on other projects. THere's not alot of new money for existing projects that need it, so I'm not sure that it's ever gonna happen.

Especially since they've basically decided they don't want a smaller Apache to do what the Warrior is already capable of doing.
Is my Pan Am ticket to the moon still good?
 
UH60FtRucker
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RE: Rumor: New RAH-66 Comanche Funding

Wed Sep 05, 2007 7:30 am

Quoting JakeOrion (Thread starter):
Again, I am skeptical but I was curious if anyone would know anything about this rumor?

Absolutely dead wrong.

Both airframes are at Redstone, and one will soon be going to the Army Aviation Museum at Fort Rucker, Alabama. And the second one will either go to another museum, elsewhere... or serve as a testbed for future system development.

When General Cody cancelled the program, he took all of the money that was originally slotted to go towards the RAH-66, and spread it out across the entire Army aviation fleet.

Instead of buying roughly 180 Comanches, we'll be getting far more "bang" for our buck.

The Army was going to be spending billions of dollars on about 180 airframes. At the same time, our CH-47 Chinooks were old and needing major rehaul. Our UH-60 Black Hawks were 20yrs old and lacked modern technology. Our C-23 Sherpas were 30yrs old and showing signs of structural fatigue. Our guard units were still flying UH-1s for stateside VIP/search & rescue/RAID missions, and the airframes were old. Our AH-64D Longbows were no longer the most capable Longbow available (Netherlands for example had Block II).

So what did we do? We canceled the Comanche and transferred that money into fixing all the problems I listed above.

For the CH-47 community, they are getting the new F model. For the UH-60 community, we are getting the new M model. For the AH-64 community, they have the Block II upgrade and will get the Block III upgrade around 2008. For the C-23 community, they will get the C-27 Spartan. For the OH-58D community they will get the RAH-70. And the UH-1s and OH-58A/C are now being replaced by the UH-72A Lakotas.

We're NOT getting the RAH-66. The Army doesn't want it, and the money has been put into better ventures. Even if Congress magically gave the Army the cash, it's doubtful the Army would waste it on the Comanche. Especially when we stop to consider the fact that we currently have nearly two and half divisions worth of equipment waiting in depot for repairs!

-UH60
Your men have to follow your orders. They don't have to go to your funeral.
 
AirRyan
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RE: Rumor: New RAH-66 Comanche Funding

Wed Sep 05, 2007 7:31 am

Now I don't know about all the performance specs and capabilities, but the RAH-66 can do seemingly everything a Longbow AH-64D can do and more so - it's flight characteristics were uniquely impressive and it's stealth was still an asset. The Army basically just decided that they could buuy COTS for the scout mission and save a few billion bucks - I wouldn't be surprised if the Boeing mafia had something to do with that so they could continue to sell more Apaches.
 
UH60FtRucker
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RE: Rumor: New RAH-66 Comanche Funding

Wed Sep 05, 2007 9:40 am

Quoting AirRyan (Reply 4):
Now I don't know about all the performance specs and capabilities, but the RAH-66 can do seemingly everything a Longbow AH-64D can do and more so - it's flight characteristics were uniquely impressive and it's stealth was still an asset

Well... funny you say that... because the final report by ATTC (Army Technical Test Center) reported that, "the stealth characteristics was severely negated when the helicopter was outfitted with external stores." And the Army predicted that, on average, "60-70% of combat missions would require a flight configuration requiring external stores."

In other words, the Army did not foresee many unarmed reconnaissance flights for the RAH-66. And as you're arguing, if the RAH-66 was to do the AH-64D's job, then it would definitely require external stores.

Not to mention that the RAH-66 was never outfitted with any active countermeasures. There was no ALQ-144. There was no ALQ-136, ALQ-156, etc... there was no M-130 dispensers. Which was a problem since the radar threat was suppose to be counteracted by the stealth... yet in most configurations, the stealth could not be relied on. And the IR threat was not sufficiently covered by simply dispersing the engine exhaust through HIRSS baffles.

....So you're wrong. Not to mention the fact that the RAH-66 was never intended to be the flying tank, that the AH-64 is. You'd be hard pressed to make a convincing argument that the Comanche could do everything, and more, than an Apache!

Quoting AirRyan (Reply 4):
I wouldn't be surprised if the Boeing mafia had something to do with that so they could continue to sell more Apaches.

Oh come'on AirRyan... now you're just sounding ridiculous. You're making the same bogus claims over in the CSAR-X thread... and you can't even back up those claims.

Unless you have some evidence that Boeing secretly worked with the Army to kill the Comanche, you really need to start leaving your tin-hat in the closet.  Yeah sure

-UH60
Your men have to follow your orders. They don't have to go to your funeral.
 
dl021
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RE: Rumor: New RAH-66 Comanche Funding

Wed Sep 05, 2007 12:04 pm

DUde.....seriously? You seem to have a real hardon for conspiracies on some things.....
you have to know your shit better than that....

a couple of points that the army figured out about the Comanche

Quoting AirRyan (Reply 4):
The Army basically just decided that they could buuy COTS for the scout mission and save a few billion bucks - I wouldn't be surprised if the Boeing mafia had something to do with that so they could continue to sell more Apaches.

A bunch of billions of dollars that were spent on projects that actually improved the army's capabilities in far more meaningful ways. The C-27s are such an improvement over the Sherpas it ain't funny....not counting the fact that the Sherpas are worn out. The replacement of the old Hueys with the Lakota is a huge boon. The F model Chithook is saving lives with the improved capabilities it has over the old D models (which I remember as being the "new" D models). I could go on, but you get the point. A couple hundred scouts that would have been seriously limited in their ability compared to their cost (and would have been used by some overzealous COs as mini-attack birds even though they didn't have the carrying capacity....sort of like I'm told the Kiowas are sometimes) would have been a waste of time, especially since they were originally conceived as European scouts.

Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 5):
Well... funny you say that... because the final report by ATTC (Army Technical Test Center) reported that, "the stealth characteristics was severely negated when the helicopter was outfitted with external stores."

Well, they also impacted the flight characteristics of the airplane, and the rear rotors were incredibly loud and they had serious issues stabilizing them.

Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 5):
There was no ALQ-144. There was no ALQ-136, ALQ-156, etc... there was no M-130 dispensers.

not to mention that they had to hook up these incredibly non-stealthy rear horizontal stabilizing tails to counteract the effects of the supposed-to-be-quiet rotors.

The USA got real research benefits out of this program, and it will undoubtedly be useful in the future. However they used the money in much better ways as it turned out once they cut their losses on the Comanche.
Is my Pan Am ticket to the moon still good?
 
Boeing4ever
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RE: Rumor: New RAH-66 Comanche Funding

Wed Sep 05, 2007 12:07 pm

Quoting AirRyan (Reply 4):
I wouldn't be surprised if the Boeing mafia had something to do with that so they could continue to sell more Apaches.

Boeing was one of the two prime contractors. Your theory makes a lot of sense though.  Yeah sure

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JakeOrion
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RE: Rumor: New RAH-66 Comanche Funding

Wed Sep 05, 2007 12:27 pm

Thanks for the input guys. This bastard (the BBQ guy, not AirRyan Big grin) tempted me to the dark-side, where I almost wanted to believe, but its nice to know he's full of sh*t.

I knew virtually the rest of the money from the Comanche program went into updating/upgrading/new equipment for the Army, plus after hearing all the cons about the 66 as of late, it sounds like the only thing it really had going for it was stealth, but even that was basically compromised.

Fortunately, some of the tech developed from the 66 went into other helo's and equipment as well, so at least it wasn't a total loss for the program.
Every problem has a simple solution; finding the simple solution is the difficult problem.

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