a380heavy
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When Did The Fighting Falcon Turn Into A Viper?

Sat Mar 23, 2013 8:40 am

This probably has something to do with General Dynamics and Lockheed Martin but can anybody tell me definitively when and why the F-16 changed its designation?

A380Heavy
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ptrjong
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RE: When Did The Fighting Falcon Turn Into A Viper?

Sat Mar 23, 2013 8:49 am

It didn't. 'Viper' is a nickname.

Just 'Falcon' makes a much better name in my opnion, one that might have stuck.

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flyingturtle
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RE: When Did The Fighting Falcon Turn Into A Viper?

Sat Mar 23, 2013 9:23 am

Funny. Some falcons hunt for vipers...


What Happened To The Fighting Falcon? (by TWAMD-80 Dec 29 2004 in Military Aviation & Space Flight) has some more info.


David
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sprout5199
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RE: When Did The Fighting Falcon Turn Into A Viper?

Sat Mar 23, 2013 12:07 pm

Quoting ptrjong (Reply 1):
It didn't. 'Viper' is a nickname.

IIRC the f-16 came out about the same time as the series "Battlestar Galactica" came out. The fighters in the series were named "Vipers" and since the F-16 was an "electric" jet, they nicknamed it "Viper". I remember the series well, watched it every week.

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Moose135
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RE: When Did The Fighting Falcon Turn Into A Viper?

Sat Mar 23, 2013 1:03 pm

I always thought "Lawn Dart" worked well...
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johns624
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RE: When Did The Fighting Falcon Turn Into A Viper?

Sun Mar 24, 2013 2:06 pm

About the same time that the Thunderbolt II became the Warthog...   
 
a380heavy
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RE: When Did The Fighting Falcon Turn Into A Viper?

Sun Mar 24, 2013 4:41 pm

Quoting johns624 (Reply 5):

I really didn't think it was a dumb question, I understand there are nicknames such as Warthog, BUFF and Bone, but everyone seems to refer to the F-16 as the Viper and I've not heard the term Fighting Falcon for ages. This is the reason I asked the question.

On top of this a lot of the fighter aircraft don't seem to have widely used nicknames

F18 = Hornet with newer models being Super Hornets
F15 = Eagle/Strike Eagle
F22 = Raptor
F4 = Phantom
F14 = Tomcat
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checksixx
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RE: When Did The Fighting Falcon Turn Into A Viper?

Mon Mar 25, 2013 3:55 am

Quoting a380heavy (Reply 6):
I really didn't think it was a dumb question

I'm pretty sure no one said it was a dumb question....

Quoting a380heavy (Reply 6):
On top of this a lot of the fighter aircraft don't seem to have widely used nicknames

F18 = Hornet with newer models being Super Hornets
F15 = Eagle/Strike Eagle
F22 = Raptor
F4 = Phantom
F14 = Tomcat

Those are all official designated names and not nicknames...
 
Devilfish
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RE: When Did The Fighting Falcon Turn Into A Viper?

Mon Mar 25, 2013 4:26 am

When LM officially came out with this?.....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KE4yG5qjWMA

http://www.stratpost.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/LMF16V.jpg
http://www.stratpost.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/LMF16V.jpg.


Quoting a380heavy (Reply 6):
On top of this a lot of the fighter aircraft don't seem to have widely used nicknames

F18 = Hornet with newer models being Super Hornets
F15 = Eagle/Strike Eagle

Super Bug; Mud Hen ?

[Edited 2013-03-24 22:04:37]
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checksixx
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RE: When Did The Fighting Falcon Turn Into A Viper?

Mon Mar 25, 2013 11:54 am

 
jgarrido
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RE: When Did The Fighting Falcon Turn Into A Viper?

Mon Mar 25, 2013 2:42 pm

I story I heard what that during testing and before the Air Force had originally given the aircraft it's name the test pilots started calling it a viper. When it went operational the Air Force decided it should be named after a bird like the F15 so they gave it the name Falcon. However viper stuck within the fighter community.
 
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RE: When Did The Fighting Falcon Turn Into A Viper?

Mon Mar 25, 2013 4:09 pm

What i understand is that originally GD wanted to name the F-16 simply the Falcon. But then Dassault Aviation came around and said they had already trademarked the Falcon name for their Falcon 50 Bizjet. Which is why instead the F-16 was renamed tge Fighting Falcon
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ptrjong
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RE: When Did The Fighting Falcon Turn Into A Viper?

Mon Mar 25, 2013 7:13 pm

Quoting L-188 (Reply 11):

Maybe Dassault didn't like it, but I don't think you can copyright a common name like Falcon or Hawk for your aicraft. Note that the A-4 and Cessna 172 are both named Skyhawk.
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checksixx
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RE: When Did The Fighting Falcon Turn Into A Viper?

Tue Mar 26, 2013 4:43 am

Quoting L-188 (Reply 11):
What i understand is that originally GD wanted to name the F-16 simply the Falcon. But then Dassault Aviation came around and said they had already trademarked the Falcon name for their Falcon 50 Bizjet. Which is why instead the F-16 was renamed tge Fighting Falcon

Most definitely not...and the manufacturer doesn't name the aircraft, the government designates it.
 
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bikerthai
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RE: When Did The Fighting Falcon Turn Into A Viper?

Tue Mar 26, 2013 6:41 pm

Just to add into the confusion . . .

Is the F-2 really called a Viper Zero? To a novice the F-2 looks just like an F-16.

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ptrjong
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RE: When Did The Fighting Falcon Turn Into A Viper?

Tue Mar 26, 2013 8:57 pm

Quoting bikerthai (Reply 14):
Is the F-2 really called a Viper Zero?

Sounds like a joke, based on the Mitsubishi A6M.

In my country the F-16 was sometimes called Bunzing (Skunk).

I read in an old magazine that it was almost named Condor (silly name for a small fighter). This is confirmed here.
http://forum.keypublishing.com/archive/index.php?t-50081.html

Quoting ptrjong (Reply 12):
and the manufacturer doesn't name the aircraft, the government designates it.

Doesn't the government simply take over a name chosen by the manufacturer in many cases?

Certainly, Starfighter and Starfire sound like chosen by Lockheed, for example.
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GDB
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RE: When Did The Fighting Falcon Turn Into A Viper?

Wed Mar 27, 2013 8:36 am

Quoting L-188 (Reply 11):
What i understand is that originally GD wanted to name the F-16 simply the Falcon. But then Dassault Aviation came around and said they had already trademarked the Falcon name for their Falcon 50 Bizjet.

Perhaps another factor in play here? Around this time the US Coast Guard brought the Falcon 20 maritime patrol version.
Since the USCG do use aircraft types that are also in the inventory of the US armed services, like C-130 Hercules, those Sea-Hawk versions to name two, there was a desire to avoid confusion within the US services?

My favourite one though was when the top brass thought that 'Excalibur' would be a suitably imposing name for the B-1 bomber, until someone mentioned that was also the name of a popular brand of condom in the US.
(For those who minds work in a certain way maybe 'Bone' was backhanded reference to the original naming intention? That brand name is not used in the UK, one of the original ideas for naming the BAC Lightning was also Excalibur, to repeat the potential faux pas with the B-1 a RAF aircraft would have to be called the 'Durex').
 
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RE: When Did The Fighting Falcon Turn Into A Viper?

Fri Mar 29, 2013 5:25 pm

Quoting GDB (Reply 16):
Perhaps another factor in play here? Around this time the US Coast Guard brought the Falcon 20 maritime patrol version.
Since the USCG do use aircraft types that are also in the inventory of the US armed services, like C-130 Hercules, those Sea-Hawk versions to name two, there was a desire to avoid confusion within the US services?

Not very likely.
The F-16 Fighting Falcon name dates back to Early 1975, The HU-25 Guardian didn't come into the USCG invintory until 1983 and "Falcon" was never an offical name attached to it.
The HC-130H And J are refered to Hercules/Super Hurcules. Sometimes Combat King is inproperly used due to it being the config as the USAF bird sans arial-refueling kit.
HH-60's are refered too as Jayhawk
(HH) MH-65 Dolphin uses the English spelling of it's french sister.
 
GDB
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RE: When Did The Fighting Falcon Turn Into A Viper?

Fri Mar 29, 2013 7:44 pm

Quoting Sinlock (Reply 17):
The F-16 Fighting Falcon name dates back to Early 1975, The HU-25 Guardian didn't come into the USCG invintory until 1983 and "Falcon" was never an offical name attached to it.

Quite possibly, though IIRC the USCG Falcons were ordered in 1979.
I also recall adverts by GD, in Flight International, on leaflets doled out on the stands at Farnborough, which called the F-16 the Fighting Falcon, that of course does not mean it was an official designation used by the USAF.
 
Devilfish
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RE: When Did The Fighting Falcon Turn Into A Viper?

Sat Mar 30, 2013 12:28 am

Quoting checksixx (Reply 9):
Just over a year ago...F-16V....Feb 2012.

Yes...it was 'Super' (cameo appearance by Desert Falcon) until LockMart turned it to menacing 'Viper'...      ...

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http://farm6.staticflickr.com/5298/5558739700_9df6f55993_z.jpg


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http://farm6.staticflickr.com/5197/5859860518_2a7843bf0a_z.jpg

[Edited 2013-03-29 17:51:38]
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rfields5421
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RE: When Did The Fighting Falcon Turn Into A Viper?

Sat Mar 30, 2013 12:55 am

Quoting ptrjong (Reply 12):
but I don't think you can copyright a common name like Falcon or Hawk for your aicraft. Note that the A-4 and Cessna 172 are both named Skyhawk.

I don't see any reason it could not be protected as intellectual property - I believe it would be a Registered Trademark though.

After all Ford certainly owns all rights to the Mustang name for automobiles, GM for Impala, etc.

Skyhawk is a registered trademark of Cessna and Falcon is a registered trademark of Dassualt Falcon Corporation of New Jersey.

I don't know if Douglas tried to trademark Skyhawk, or that was a military assigned name staying with the sequence of Sky___ aircraft. It was produced before the C-172 was introduced. The two companies might have decided to share the name.

There was a "Falcon" in the US military before - a Curtiss biplane from the 20s with one version the A-3 Falcon through A-6 Falcon. The Navy version was the F8C-4 Falcon.

The XP-13 Viper was also a biplane - only one delivered for testing.

There was also the AIM-4 Falcon missile used on F-4s in the Vietnam era.

Personally I believe the 'Fighting Falcon' was used to hilight the new aircraft and to avoid confusion with commercial biz jets and past military aircraft with the Falcon name.

The USAF probably could have insisted Falcon as the name, but Fighting Falcon sounds 'more military'.
 
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RE: When Did The Fighting Falcon Turn Into A Viper?

Sat Mar 30, 2013 5:02 am

I had heard the name was voted on, and based on the USAFA's mascot. The Academy still uses Falcon for all its teams.
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