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AirRyan
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Fri Oct 23, 2009 2:30 am

Well it looks like the House succumbed to the Senate on the VH-71, but at least they got the F-35 alternative engine in there; how can anyone argue that the F-16 Alternative Engine program resulting in the GE F110 was anything but a undeniable success?

What's the Vegas line on the next new Presidential replacement helicopter still ending up to still be based on the the H-71 but coming in only more expensive for the taxpayer than if they were to have just finished Increment 1? Can't possibly begin to tell us that the S-92 is a better aircraft or can do anything that the H-71 cannot.

Quote:

The bill does end two other programs that the Pentagon has sought to discontinue over the objections of some in Congress: the F-22 fighter plane, and the VH-71 presidential helicopter, both made by Lockheed, as well as the ground vehicle portion of the Army's modernization drive.

http://www.reuters.com/article/AIRLIN/idUSN225016520091022

Article dated 10/22 as well, with some other articles saying that funding for a more C-17's could still happen in another amendment, so not certain yet until we read something from Murtha about the VH-71. With Gates stance on the VH-71 one really has to wonder his ties to Sikorsky, how can he be so adamant minus the financial numbers that everyone else is using?

Quote:

Meanwhile, Murtha said there still has been no decision by House and Senate conferees on whether to include funding for the problem-plagued VH-71 presidential helicopter program, which the administration has sought to cancel because of soaring costs and schedule delays.

Defying a veto threat from the White House, the House passed a bill with an added $400 million to make five initial "Increment 1" helicopters operational, reflecting Murtha's concerns that the military already had invested $3.2 billion in the program.

The Senate bill included only the funds requested to cancel the program.

In a "heartburn" letter to appropriators Oct. 14, Gates said he would personally recommend the president veto the defense bill if it includes funds to continue the VH-71 program. Making the five aircraft operational, he said, would cost an additional $2 billion -- and the helicopters would still not meet full operational requirements.

Undeterred, Murtha is still speaking with the administration about the issue. "We're still negotiating, trying to convince them," he said.

http://www.govexec.com/story_page.cfm?articleid=43854&dcn=todaysnews

[Edited 2009-10-22 19:46:19]
 
TropicBird
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Fri Oct 23, 2009 2:47 am

It's still alive but just barely in the appropriations conference.

Excerpt.....

Meanwhile, Murtha said there still has been no decision by House and Senate conferees
on whether to include funding for the problem-plagued VH-71 presidential helicopter program, which the administration has sought to cancel because of soaring costs and schedule delays.

Defying a veto threat from the White House, the House passed a bill with an added $400 million to make five initial "Increment 1" helicopters operational, reflecting Murtha's concerns that the military already had invested $3.2 billion in the program.

The Senate bill included only the funds requested to cancel the program.

In a "heartburn" letter to appropriators Oct. 14, Gates said he would personally recommend the president veto the defense bill if it includes funds to continue the VH-71 program. Making the five aircraft operational, he said, would cost an additional $2 billion -- and the helicopters would still not meet full operational requirements.

Undeterred, Murtha is still speaking with the administration about the issue. "We're still negotiating, trying to convince them," he said.


http://www.govexec.com/story_page.cfm?articleid=43854&dcn=todaysnews
 
AirRyan
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Fri Oct 23, 2009 4:13 pm

This is truly ignorant - it's going to cost at least $2B just to perform a service life exentions on the current Presidentlal helicopter fleet so that they will last long enough for another program to award and build another new replacement helicotper!

So nearly $4B already spent down the tubes, plus let's throw in another half a billion for program termination and cancellation fees, another half of a billion to run a new program competition, and how many more billion then just to actually build and buy the next new replacement?

Yeah, $2B more to finish out the Increment 1 buy of 20 VH-71A's was just too cost prohibitive; how about the $8B refund from the ACORN stimulus funds since proven to have been a fraudulent joke?


Quote:

Lawmakers, however, complied with the request of Gates to cap the number of F-22s to the 187 the Pentagon already has, so money could be used to buy more F-35s, which are newer model jets. They also agreed to terminate funds for VH-71 presidential helicopters, which the White House said "have no mission equipment and would require in excess of $2 billion to complete and to operate."

Read more: http://www.allheadlinenews.com/articles/7016779830#ixzz0UlfpdiKV
 
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Revelation
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Fri Oct 23, 2009 5:03 pm



Quoting AirRyan (Reply 50):
With Gates stance on the VH-71 one really has to wonder his ties to Sikorsky, how can he be so adamant minus the financial numbers that everyone else is using?

It'd be interesting to see a Congressional hearing where all the players were put into one room and all the assertions heard and hopefully rectified.

As from before, it seems Gates is going on the following info he's getting from the Pentagon:

Quoting Revelation (Reply 42):
"We can't do anything with $500 million except perhaps pay for the termination costs of the VH-71 program," Morrell said. "To build out the five birds we already have and make them mission capable will cost us between 2 and 3 billion. Just for the 5 birds. To complete the 23 [planned operational aircraft] would cost $8 billion - and they would still not meet the requirements."

But I'm sure many dispute these figures.

In any case, other than your repeated conjectures, I don't see any allegations that Gates has "ties" to Sikorsky.

VH-71 became an over-the-top program:

Quote:
Even the president’s ride can be hot-rodded. That’s the best way to describe the 23 choppers scheduled to replace the current fleet of Marine One VH-3Ds and VH-60Ns. Outfitted with a kitchen, a bathroom and a White House-worthy high-speed communications suite, the VH-71 is closer in capabilities (and amenities) to Air Force One than to its short-hop predecessors.

Development of the VH-71, which had its first test flight in Yeovil, England, in July, was accelerated following the Sept. 11 attacks, with Lockheed Martin promising five production models by 2009. The remaining choppers, due by 2018, will include even more communications systems and performance boosts.

New Marine One Specs
• Long Range /// With three super-efficient engines, the VH-71s will travel up to 350 miles. Today’s VH-3Ds have a 100-mile range.

• Oval Cabin /// The VH-71 is billed as an “Oval Office in the sky,” with sound- and vibration-reducing systems, missile protection and seating for 14 passengers.

Ref: http://www.popularmechanics.com/technology/military_law/4220902.html

Quote:
According to the GAO, Increment 1 of the program is already $341 million over budget and the Navy’s requirements for Increment 2 aircraft–in the form of armor, countermeasures and electronics–add so much weight as to require yet untested and more powerful engines, heftier gearboxes and drivetrains, a longer tailboom, and larger main and tail rotor systems. These changes could add another $1 billion in costs and amount to a completely new aircraft development program.

Ref: http://www.ainonline.com/news/single...m-update-vh-71-kestrel/?no_cache=1

So, it seems they started off with an off-the-shelf helicopter and loaded it down with so many requirements that you ended up needing a much bigger helicopter. If everyone involved had managed the program better, we may not have ended up here, but alas, we did.
Wake up to find out that you are the eyes of the world
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Wake now, discover that you are the song that the morning brings
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AirRyan
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Fri Oct 23, 2009 8:02 pm



Quoting Revelation (Reply 53):
So, it seems they started off with an off-the-shelf helicopter and loaded it down with so many requirements that you ended up needing a much bigger helicopter. If everyone involved had managed the program better, we may not have ended up here, but alas, we did.

But that again is begs the question as to just what exactly does the Pentagon hope to obtain here?

The H-71 platform is still the largest, most capable aircraft of the size required for the mission and so it's all but certain that unless Sikorsky shat an entirely new helicopter, the Pentagon is going to be hard pressed to not select the H-71 again and if anything, just mandate a new procurement team with it, something that they could have done without having to cancel the present program.

It just seems like a bailout to Sikorsky to pay them to extend the life of the existing fleet while we give them time to re-bid on a competition they have already lost. The Marine H-1 upgrade became such a sham it turned out being a blatant bailout program for Bell by the time the numbers had settled; if that's the kind of bargain the taxpayer can look forward to with Sikorsky in the next round of Presidential helicopter procurement, I'm really going to have a hard time coughing up my taxes for that kind of conspicuous waste.
 
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Fri Oct 23, 2009 8:37 pm



Quoting AirRyan (Reply 54):
The H-71 platform is still the largest, most capable aircraft of the size required for the mission and so it's all but certain that unless Sikorsky shat an entirely new helicopter, the Pentagon is going to be hard pressed to not select the H-71 again and if anything, just mandate a new procurement team with it, something that they could have done without having to cancel the present program.

I too have a hard time figuring out what is going on. The statements above keep saying that building out VH-71s would not meet the requirements. So, something has to give. From what I can tell the H-71 is the most capable helo that can still land on the WH lawn without blowing away the Rose Garden. So, why can't they freaking understand that their choices are to either live within the limitations of H-71 and end up with an acceptable cost, or grow beyond the H-71 and try to deal with an unacceptable cost?

Why does the president need to have 23 helos that can go 350 miles each with its own kitchen, bathroom, and TV studio and room for 14? Why does it need sound and vibration reducing systems - it's a freaking helicopter for god's sake, they are loud and they vibrate - deal with it!

Quoting AirRyan (Reply 54):
It just seems like a bailout to Sikorsky to pay them to extend the life of the existing fleet while we give them time to re-bid on a competition they have already lost.

That's your opinion. I'd be more likely to believe it if we saw some corroboration.

Personally, I think it's a shot across the bow of the DOD and the defense industry that they need to live within program budgets, even if they are being goaded into overruns. You can't expect to take a $6B program and let it grow into a $13B program without ramifications.
Wake up to find out that you are the eyes of the world
The heart has its beaches, its homeland and thoughts of its own
Wake now, discover that you are the song that the morning brings
The heart has its seasons, its evenings and songs of its own
 
Lumberton
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Fri Oct 23, 2009 9:14 pm

VH-71 is dead. There is no hope that a majority in either chamber will put political capital on the line to resurrect this program.

 tombstone   tombstone   tombstone   tombstone   tombstone 
"When all is said and done, more will be said than done".
 
AirRyan
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Fri Oct 23, 2009 10:16 pm



Quoting Lumberton (Reply 56):
VH-71 is dead. There is no hope that a majority in either chamber will put political capital on the line to resurrect this program.

But the biggest proponents have been Democrats, supported by Schumer at least in a media interview, and championed by John Murtha who quite frankly, has more seniority than Pelos, Obama and his entire cabinet put together. I want names and answers as to why this program is not getting the attention it deserves - I consider forgoing nearly $4B of taxpayer money to be of an egregious act that ought to demand accountability.

Quoting Revelation (Reply 55):
Personally, I think it's a shot across the bow of the DOD and the defense industry that they need to live within program budgets, even if they are being goaded into overruns. You can't expect to take a $6B program and let it grow into a $13B program without ramifications.

More like a shot blowing off their big toe! Their trying to evoke a facade of fiscal responsibility by canceling the program yet any taxpayer with a 3rd grade mathematical education can figure out that it's only delaying the inevitable and going to end up costing the proverbial taxpayer more money in the long run - people ought to go to jail for these sorts of blatant waste. I think this is just another example by politicians of both parties thinking the American taxpayer is too stupid and cares more about the basketball/football/hockey/baseball score than they do the direction of their Nation.
 
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Fri Oct 23, 2009 10:37 pm



Quoting AirRyan (Reply 57):
Their trying to evoke a facade of fiscal responsibility by canceling the program yet any taxpayer with a 3rd grade mathematical education can figure out that it's only delaying the inevitable and going to end up costing the proverbial taxpayer more money in the long run

I have a hard time seeing how any Congress will approve $13B for a presidential helicopter, especially now that it's a such a political hot potato. However it is a tasty pork dinner, and Congress's appetite seems to always grow with time, so watch this space...
Wake up to find out that you are the eyes of the world
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Wake now, discover that you are the song that the morning brings
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sasd209
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Fri Oct 23, 2009 10:58 pm



Quoting Revelation (Reply 55):
You can't expect to take a $6B program and let it grow into a $13B program without ramifications.

Agreed. I know some here are advancing 'conspiracy theories', and who knows, there *may* be some behind the scenes issues we know nothing about. The bottom line is I believe this was a grossly mismanaged process from all angles, and the costs spiraled to the point of absurdity. IMO, of course.
 
AirRyan
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Sun Oct 25, 2009 2:19 am



Quoting Sasd209 (Reply 59):
Agreed. I know some here are advancing 'conspiracy theories', and who knows, there *may* be some behind the scenes issues we know nothing about. The bottom line is I believe this was a grossly mismanaged process from all angles, and the costs spiraled to the point of absurdity. IMO, of course.

Ever hear of the V-22 or even the F-22 for that matter? And just wait for the Joint Suck Fighter before it's all said and done. Two wrongs don't make it right, VH-71A in Increment 1 is a helluva lot better ROI than SLEP'd VH-60N and VH-3D's with a another $10B plus still left to be spent on a POTUS helicopter.

I'd say maybe Gates thinks he can get a VV-22C but that cabin would be akin to the VH-60N!

 
CTR
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Sun Oct 25, 2009 2:47 pm



Quoting AirRyan (Reply 60):
I'd say maybe Gates thinks he can get a VV-22C but that cabin would be akin to the VH-60N!

The Osprey has a usable cabin volume of 739 cu ft.
http://www.globalsecurity.org/milita...systems/aircraft/v-22-payload.htm#

The UH-60 has a usale cabin volume of 299 cu ft.
http://www.sikorsky.com

The cabin volune of the V-22 apears to be more than twice the size of the UH-60.

Have fun,

CTR
Aircraft design is just one big compromise,,,
 
sasd209
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Sun Oct 25, 2009 3:34 pm



Quoting AirRyan (Reply 60):
Ever hear of the V-22 or even the F-22 for that matter?

Indeed I have....I'm not catching your comparison. Apparently you're comparing programs with hundreds of aircraft produced and long development times based upon the "cutting edge" of the technology employed versus a production run of less than 2 dozen helicopters whose basic design has been in service for over 10 years?

Quoting AirRyan (Reply 60):
And just wait for the Joint Suck Fighter before it's all said and done.

I shall. Again, we have a lengthy development of an entirely new aircraft with the "latest" in technology with an estimated production run of, what? 2000 frames or so?

Quoting AirRyan (Reply 60):
VH-71A in Increment 1 is a helluva lot better ROI than SLEP'd VH-60N and VH-3D's with a another $10B plus still left to be spent on a POTUS helicopter.

Is this another of your opinions or is there some quantitative data to back this up?
 
ThePointblank
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Mon Oct 26, 2009 1:48 am



Quoting Sasd209 (Reply 62):
Is this another of your opinions or is there some quantitative data to back this up?

The EH-101 was designed as a Sea King replacement for the Italian and British by two companies that license produced the Sea King; Westland and Agusta. It has more range, more power, and more carrying capacity.

SLEPing the VH-60's and the VH-3D's does not improve the situation being faced by the fleet; airframe fatigue and in the case of the VH-3D's, a lack of spare parts. The VH-3D's are as old as Canada's fleet of CH-124 Sea King's, and we are having trouble finding spare parts despite all the retrofitting of new and upgraded components (we've replace the gearbox, the engines, avionics, mission systems, etc). It is well past time to bite the bullet and replace the aircraft all together, and no amount of SLEPing can get around that.

We've moved towards the S-92 Superhawk (which was a controversial decision considering that it was originally considered non-compliant on a number of technical specifications) as our Sea King replacement. Right now, there are 9 VH-71A's available; at best, we can retire the VH-3D's, and replace them with the VH-71's that are outfitted with the mission systems and equipment stripped out of the VH-3D's. That would be the easiest way to go forward, and eliminate many of the pains HMX-1 is facing in trying to keep the VH-3D fleet alive.

Spending $1.4 billion dollars to SLEP a fleet that will need replacement in less than a decade is not a good use of money; this is the option that the Pentagon is facing when they cancel the VH-71 program. On top of the $1.4 billion dollars spent on SLEP, there will be additional costs in restarting a procurement process, plus the costs for developing and producing the replacement. It's being penny-wise, but pound foolish; the money is going to have to spent anyways, it is just a matter of time.
 
AirRyan
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Mon Oct 26, 2009 3:37 am



Quoting CTR (Reply 61):
The Osprey has a usable cabin volume of 739 cu ft.
http://www.globalsecurity.org/milita...systems/aircraft/v-22-payload.htm#

The UH-60 has a usale cabin volume of 299 cu ft.
http://www.sikorsky.com

The cabin volune of the V-22 apears to be more than twice the size of the UH-60.

It's usable but not preferable; the S-92 would likely get the nod over the V-22 just because of the extra room. I was more so getting to the point that if the H-71 fuselage was not large enough, than the V-22 going in the opposite direction will likely not fit the bill either.

Of course the way the Pentagon is talking out of the ass as of late refusing to take into account all of the actual costs associated with terminating the program, it sounds like they want to re-write the specs all over again after had wasted nearly $4B in taxpayer money, so who knows what they'll do now. There still is not a better airframe out there than the H-71.

Quoting Sasd209 (Reply 62):
Quoting AirRyan (Reply 60):
VH-71A in Increment 1 is a helluva lot better ROI than SLEP'd VH-60N and VH-3D's with a another $10B plus still left to be spent on a POTUS helicopter.

Is this another of your opinions or is there some quantitative data to back this up?

What are you talking about? Increment 1 does everything the existing fleet of Presidential helicopters can do but raises the bar and does it all on a brand new and superior airframe in the H-71. 325nm range versus 100nm on the VH-3D, for example. The CEO of AW has said that they would build the remainder of Increment 1 helicopters for a fixed price that for roughly the same cost as SLEP'ing the existing fleet, the USMC could have around 20 VH-71A's in Increment 1.

But the Pentagon refused to acknowledge this, they refused to acknowledge nearly a half billion in program termination costs, another half billion to run another competition, as well as even acknowledge they already have nearly $4B already invested into the current direction.

Anyone can say whatever they want but the reality appears not to favor the assertion that terminating this program at this point is going to save the taxpayer any money; in fact it's going to only cost the taxpayer two to three times as much money now.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 63):
Spending $1.4 billion dollars to SLEP a fleet that will need replacement in less than a decade is not a good use of money; this is the option that the Pentagon is facing when they cancel the VH-71 program.

Conservative estimates at SLEP'ing the existing fleet of all Sikorsky Presidential aircraft long enough to last until Sikorsky can put together another bid for their replacement is actually closer to $2B, and if the USMC H-1 upgrade fiasco is of any indicator, expect at least $3B to $4B before all is said and done.

All I can say is that I damn sure hope whatever the Pentagon pulls outta their ass and asks for in another program ends up again with the VH-71, because not only have we already invested too much into it, it's still the best airframe available anywhere in the world.
 
CTR
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Mon Oct 26, 2009 10:56 am



Quoting AirRyan (Reply 60):
'd say maybe Gates thinks he can get a VV-22C but that cabin would be akin to the VH-60N!

I agree with your later statement that thr VH-71 or S-92 would offer more room than the V-22. But your earlier claim was that the H-60N had approximately the same volume as the V-22. The V-22 has over twice the interior volume as the H-60N.

Have fun,

CTR
Aircraft design is just one big compromise,,,
 
AirRyan
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Sat Oct 31, 2009 5:23 am



Quoting Ctr (Reply 65):
I agree with your later statement that thr VH-71 or S-92 would offer more room than the V-22. But your earlier claim was that the H-60N had approximately the same volume as the V-22. The V-22 has over twice the interior volume as the H-60N.

My bad, I didn't word my statement well enough.

Okay, so here's the latest - the decision to fund is still yet to be made, and if key Dems like Chuck Schumer and former Marine Murtha are fighting hard for this, that can only be a good sign. I've still yet to hear why Gates thinks the Increment 1 is such a bad idea, he can't possibly be citing fiscal reasons because all the numbers appear to point to the contrary and besides, we surely cannot justify changing our minds every three or four years after we spend FOUR BILLION in taxpayer money as to the needs of Marines 1, it's not that much rocket science.

Quote:

While the President signed the 2010 Defense Bill it does not signal the end of the fight to restore the VH-71 project.

Our representatives in Congress say funding the Presidential Helicopter replacement program is still up for discussion.

$485-million dollars in funding was secured for the project in the House.

Lockheed Martin in Owego was already starting to outfit new Presidential Helicopters.

But then the Pentagon canceled the project this year.

In a couple weeks, The House and Senate Defense Committees are expected to decide whether to resume Lockheed's contract.

"Congressman Hinchey and I are talking on a daily basis. I've talked to all the leaders on the Senate side, he's talked to all the leaders on the House side. We're giving them the arguments on the merits, and on the merits, they should build Increment I and we're pushing, pushing, pushing." said Schumer.

http://www.wbng.com/news/local/67337292.html

http://www.stargazette.com/article/2...0/Presidential+copter+not+dead+yet
 
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par13del
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Sat Oct 31, 2009 12:10 pm

Questionm has the VH-60 ever landed on the White House lawn? It is the cheapest solution, no need to SLEP an a/c which is still in productions, dump the VH-3D and save money. As for the increases capabilities of the VH-71 who exactly wants them, who exactly needs them and are they really necessary, those are the questions the tax payors need to answer before they spend their money. Do we really believe that POTUS is going to fly on a helicopter in the US for 300+ miles or loiter around in one for an hour or two requiring the need for Air Force one type communications?

Is the another case of the product re-defining the mission for the client, presently helicopters are used by POTUS to get to suitable airports to use the VIP fleet - main useage - secondary is touring or accessing parts of the country where the helo's can get in close. How much will it save the US in cost and resources if the helo can travel another 200 miles or lift more pax and weight, have they ever had to refuel Marine One in the air or leave pax and bags behind? The Lakota program so far is a success because they took a off the shelf a/c and gave it to the reserves and guard, expect the program to change now that they are talking about arming the a/c, increasing the air condition output etc. all things which will add weight and require more power which in the end requires a new a/c.

I have already visited the White House and taken my pics of the Rose Garden, so if they want to tear it up to land Chinooks of CH-53's to give POTUS the most capable helo available I say go for it, heck even a secondary pad to land the AH-64D escorts  Smile
 
sasd209
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Sun Nov 01, 2009 9:14 pm



Quoting Par13del (Reply 67):
has the VH-60 ever landed on the White House lawn?

Indeed it has:

http://images.google.com/imgres?imgu...ial%26sa%3DN%26start%3D20%26um%3D1
 
ThePointblank
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Mon Nov 02, 2009 1:53 am



Quoting Par13del (Reply 67):
Questionm has the VH-60 ever landed on the White House lawn? It is the cheapest solution, no need to SLEP an a/c which is still in productions, dump the VH-3D and save money.

There is still is a need to SLEP the VH-60's, as they need new avionics and mission systems. Also, there is a matter of service life, and the VH-60's actually have a much shorter expected service life than the VH-3's.
 
Flighty
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Mon Nov 02, 2009 2:09 am



Quoting Par13del (Reply 67):
I have already visited the White House and taken my pics of the Rose Garden, so if they want to tear it up to land Chinooks of CH-53's to give POTUS the most capable helo available I say go for it, heck even a secondary pad to land the AH-64D escorts

For a really good setup, they may have to raze the White House entirely, so the best possible helicopter battle group can land there.  Smile
 
ThePointblank
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Mon Nov 02, 2009 2:24 am

Quoting Flighty (Reply 70):
For a really good setup, they may have to raze the White House entirely, so the best possible helicopter battle group can land there. Smile

They can call in the Canadians and the Brits to do that for you, just like in 1814  

[Edited 2009-11-01 18:24:18]
 
sasd209
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Mon Nov 02, 2009 3:46 am



Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 69):
There is still is a need to SLEP the VH-60's, as they need new avionics and mission systems. Also, there is a matter of service life, and the VH-60's actually have a much shorter expected service life than the VH-3's.

Source(s)?
 
ThePointblank
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Mon Nov 02, 2009 4:19 am



Quoting Sasd209 (Reply 72):
Source(s)?

The VH-60N's has an original service life expectancy of 7,500 flight hours (the "fleet" standard service life) based on its original design and evaluative process. Aircraft utilization rates for executive support aircraft within HMX-1 are both sustained and extremely high: for the VH-60N the rate is 44.1 hrs per month; for the VH-3D the rate is 39.7.
http://www.dod.mil/pubs/air_flt_review/usmc.html

Remember, the VH-60N's are essentially UH-60A's, and the US Army is currently moving towards the UH-60M's, which have a modern, glass cockpit, upgraded engines, rotors and transmission boxes, and an updated flight control computers.
 
sasd209
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Mon Nov 02, 2009 4:32 am

If you're going to make a comparison, what is the life of the VH-3D compared to the VH-60N? You've stated the 7500 hr figure, do you have a corresponding figure for the VH-3D, or did I just miss it?
 
ThePointblank
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Mon Nov 02, 2009 5:11 am



Quoting Sasd209 (Reply 74):
If you're going to make a comparison, what is the life of the VH-3D compared to the VH-60N? You've stated the 7500 hr figure, do you have a corresponding figure for the VH-3D, or did I just miss it?

Service life for the VH-3D, if you dig into that document, is 14,000 hours.
 
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par13del
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Mon Nov 02, 2009 11:25 am



Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 69):
There is still is a need to SLEP the VH-60's, as they need new avionics and mission systems



Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 73):
Remember, the VH-60N's are essentially UH-60A's, and the US Army is currently moving towards the UH-60M's, which have a modern, glass cockpit, upgraded engines, rotors and transmission boxes, and an updated flight control computers.

That is the point of my last post, the military needs Blackhawks, and they are also moving to the UH-60M's, its one of the reasons why the Lakota is presently in US military use, so t they could get all the Blackhawks they can to put them on the frontline. So return the current VH-60's to the military effort and purchase a fleet of UH-60M's, since they were used by the VIP fleet, their hours are lower than those deployed, and if conversions are taking place along with new build a/c, this is a cheap way to go.
No way purchasing a fleet of UH-60M's will cost the billions of dollars presently being talked about for the current VH-71 or any other a/c, that's probably the reason why it's not chosen, it's a product that is known both by its capabilities and its cost, real difficult for the OEM and its supporters to "boost" the cost to cover financials for the next 5 years. Smile
 
UH60FtRucker
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Mon Nov 02, 2009 3:39 pm

How many people in this forum have flown on a V-22?? They're not nearly as big as a lot of people seem to think.

Just an example:

Your men have to follow your orders. They don't have to go to your funeral.
 
sasd209
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Mon Nov 02, 2009 4:10 pm



Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 75):

Service life for the VH-3D, if you dig into that document, is 14,000 hours.

Ahhh, got it, thanks!
 
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spudh
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Mon Nov 02, 2009 5:06 pm

I know this is a bit simplistic but if you're going to suggest buying UH-60M's as a capable off the shelf helo and make the mission fit the craft, whats wrong with an un-VH-ified EH101 (aside from it just not being Sikorsky of course). If it was the best suited helo for 'optimisation' then surely its the most capable without throwing billions at it if you're going to make the mission fit the helicopter.
 
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par13del
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Mon Nov 02, 2009 5:50 pm



Quoting Spudh (Reply 79):
If it was the best suited helo for 'optimisation' then surely its the most capable without throwing billions at it if you're going to make the mission fit the helicopter.

Well, that's what they did and the project managers screwed up the whole process to the tune of billions of dollars on increment one and a few more on increment 2. End result is that the program has been cancelled and now folks are talking about needing to re-do the process because a replacement is needed. The "expert" opinions - depending on who you read - expect it to cost as much as the last one, so better to continue the project that's already a "black hole".

There are cheaper alternatives to the current VH-71, they may be smaller a/c, lift less and carry less pax, what the failed project has shown is that maybe someone somewhere went too far, so if that is recognized, the threshold for the next bid may be lower, in which case, the UH60M, S92 and other a/c "less capable" than the EH-101 may be in the running, the a/c is to be used in the VIP fleet, its requirement are less than a combat deployed a/c.

Is it also possible that they already tried to make the mission fit the EH-101 which has more range, lifting capacity, pax compartment than the current VH-3D.  Smile
 
ThePointblank
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Tue Nov 03, 2009 1:33 am



Quoting Par13del (Reply 76):
That is the point of my last post, the military needs Blackhawks, and they are also moving to the UH-60M's, its one of the reasons why the Lakota is presently in US military use, so t they could get all the Blackhawks they can to put them on the frontline. So return the current VH-60's to the military effort and purchase a fleet of UH-60M's, since they were used by the VIP fleet, their hours are lower than those deployed, and if conversions are taking place along with new build a/c, this is a cheap way to go.
No way purchasing a fleet of UH-60M's will cost the billions of dollars presently being talked about for the current VH-71 or any other a/c, that's probably the reason why it's not chosen, it's a product that is known both by its capabilities and its cost, real difficult for the OEM and its supporters to "boost" the cost to cover financials for the next 5 years.

Ah, but the VH-60's have also seen very heavy flight hours on them due to training and operational demands, so that's a non-starter. We do have 6 VH-71's that need outfitting sitting on a ramp doing nothing that can replace the most worn aircraft in the HMX-1 fleet... and all it will take is half a billion dollars to buy them and kit them.
 
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Devilfish
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Thu Nov 05, 2009 12:37 pm



Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 81):
Ah, but the VH-60's have also seen very heavy flight hours on them due to training and operational demands, so that's a non-starter. We do have 6 VH-71's that need outfitting sitting on a ramp doing nothing that can replace the most worn aircraft in the HMX-1 fleet... and all it will take is half a billion dollars to buy them and kit them.

Here's a nice option for replacing the smaller helos.....

http://www.defense-aerospace.com/art...ky-delivers-s_76-to-uk-royals.html

Sikorsky Aircraft Delivers New VIP S-76C++ Helicopter to U.K. Royal Household

(Source: Sikorsky Aircraft Corp.; issued November 4, 2009)


And if $500M are all it would take to complete and kit out the six VH-71s built, then go for it!
"Everyone is entitled to my opinion." - Garfield
 
AirRyan
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Thu Nov 05, 2009 7:20 pm

If this isn't yet another glowing example for the need of term limits I don't know what is. Murtha, a former US Marine Colonel who began his career enlisted and even served as a Marine Drill Instructor, is bowing to General Jones, Rob Gates, and botox Pelosi in the VH-71 program. We the taxpayer are still waiting to see how General Jones and Rob Gates will propose a more fiscally responsible plan to replace HMX Presidential fleet, but that could just be because there is not one and the only reason it's being canceled is nothing shy of ignorant politics.

In addition to dumping $3.5B already invested down the toilet, throw in another $1B in program termination and re-bid costs, at least $2B to SLEP the existing fleet, and then prepare to spend $10B on another helicopter at that point, one that the VH-71 can already readily outperform. And I'm just waiting for Sikorsky to get the bid now, first a bailout in the SLEP program and then the new award, for an inferior product - where just like in KC-X, will be all because of politics.

I'm disappointed in Murtha's decision to not press onward, if he has the votes in the House to veto Obama than embarrass the hell out of him, he''s doing a well enough job of that himself as of late, and show the career politicians that saving the program per Increment 1 is the most fiscally responsible way to replace Marine 1.

Quote:

Rep. John Murtha (D-Pa.) on Wednesday said several administration officials and Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) have pressured him not to fund a new presidential helicopter.

Murtha, the senior defense appropriator in the House, told The Hill that he has been receiving “clear” signals from Pelosi, National Security Adviser Jim Jones and Defense Secretary Robert Gates that President Barack Obama won’t sign the 2010 Pentagon appropriations bill if it contains money for the now-defunct VH-71 presidential helicopter.

The administration has also issued a veto threat over the funding. Obama has not personally threatened to veto the helicopter, but has made it clear he doesn’t want it.

Murtha suggested Congress could probably find the votes to override a veto and noted that only 30 lawmakers voted against the House version of the bill, which included funding for the new helicopter.

But he said he would not let it come to that, and cast his decision to keep VH-71 funding out of the defense spending bill as protecting the president.

“We are not going to embarrass the president,” Murtha said. “It is a very delicate situation when the president gets himself in a box ... He only got 30 votes against my bill.”

http://thehill.com/business-a-lobbyi...sure-to-nix-funding-for-helicopter
 
Curt22
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Tue Nov 10, 2009 8:13 pm



Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 77):
How many people in this forum have flown on a V-22?? They're not nearly as big as a lot of people seem to think.

Just an example

Good example...and I HATE that they decided to put the battery on the ceiling, the bright pink box seen at the photo...

Yes, it's a rather small cabin.

No, it will not make a good acft for POTUS, but Yes...it is here and does offer something that conventional helo's do not...SPEED.

This acft wasn't bought for what it cannot do, but for what it can do...Speed and VTOL are the only reasons the acft exists, but to be clear...there will always be plenty of work for pure helo's in the world.

Oh yeah...As I said a year ago the VH-71 is DEAD...Sorry to those who hitched ther IRA's to this cash cow...but it's time to let it rest in peace people.
 
AirRyan
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Wed Nov 11, 2009 10:51 pm



Quoting Curt22 (Reply 84):
Good example...and I HATE that they decided to put the battery on the ceiling,

Especially for the avionic tech who has to service/replace the damned thing! The MV-22 flight deck is sweet, "it'll get 'er done" if you know what I mean. Sure, the cabin is even more narrow than that of the CH-46E, but if they think they don't need to the size of the EH-101 and want to downgrade/size, let's face it - what does the POTUS really need?

Quoting Curt22 (Reply 84):
Oh yeah...As I said a year ago the VH-71 is DEAD...Sorry to those who hitched ther IRA's to this cash cow...but it's time to let it rest in peace people.

But the EH-101 still remains the best aircraft for the mission. I don't care if LM, NG, Bell, or Boeing are the lead contractor on the project, just "get 'er done."
 
TropicBird
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Sat Dec 12, 2009 5:03 am

The latest...over $100 million added to defense spending bill for VH-71.

http://thehill.com/homenews/administ...ct-presidential-helicopter-project
 
Flighty
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Sat Dec 12, 2009 6:37 am



Quoting AirRyan (Reply 85):
But the EH-101 still remains the best aircraft for the mission.

Could be. I would expect this to go a lot like the C-32 program. (what they mean by "new procurement strategy.") It will come off the shelf recognizable as a fine civilian product with a Presidential paint job. And it will be cheap.
 
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Revelation
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Sat Dec 12, 2009 4:24 pm



Quoting Flighty (Reply 87):
I would expect this to go a lot like the C-32 program. (what they mean by "new procurement strategy.") It will come off the shelf recognizable as a fine civilian product with a Presidential paint job. And it will be cheap.

Yep, I hope so. No need for toilets, kitchens, TV studios, super-duper range, etc.

Why we're looking much beyond the VH-60N is beyond me. Call up Sikorsky and tell them to dust off the plans and make up a new batch pronto.

Hinchey gets to bring home the bacon. $130M is going to some jobs in Mo's district as well as for shutdown costs for VH-71.
Wake up to find out that you are the eyes of the world
The heart has its beaches, its homeland and thoughts of its own
Wake now, discover that you are the song that the morning brings
The heart has its seasons, its evenings and songs of its own
 
AirRyan
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Mon Dec 14, 2009 4:31 pm



Quoting Revelation (Reply 88):
Why we're looking much beyond the VH-60N is beyond me. Call up Sikorsky and tell them to dust off the plans and make up a new batch pronto.

From what AW's CEO has previously said about finishing VH-71A's in Increment 1, I don't think even new-build VH-60's could beat the cost of just finishing the VH-71.

And someone needs to bring Ashton Carter up to speed, A) the VH-71 is already a derivative of an already existing helicopter, and B) you can't get any more "existing" than the 9(+/-) VH-71A's already assembled and ready for necessary mission components in Owego.

All in all, just as the Dems are trying to stuff a bunch of pork in the defense bill so it can be signed before the current CR expires, I don't think Gates, Pelosi, or Obama can by the same token reject this agreement by both the House and the Senate (remember, Murtha has said that he has the votes in Congress to overturn a veto,) and prevent it from going through now, so this is a huge win.

Now hopefully next Spring when they do release a new list of requirements we can get a real picture of just where the VH-71A stands in terms of costs, because I just don't see any other alternative being any less expensive than just finishing increment 1, especially since any platform other than the VH-71A Increment 1 would all but require a SLEP of the existing Sikorsky fleet of Marine One helos, there is just not rational way to believe that anything other than the VH-71A is the easy and logical choice.

So Ashton Carter says they and the White House are fine by going with a less expensive helicopter, well that's exactly what increment 1 is, no need for the more expensive Increment 2 and 3, at this time (maybe a SLEP 10-15 years down the road?) Increment 1 sounds like the perfect compromise, and in addition to doing everything existing Marine One helo's do, it has so much greater attributes, efficiencies, and safeties.
 
Jackonicko
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Mon Dec 14, 2009 6:46 pm

Cogent, clear, and logical.

It will never happen.
 
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par13del
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Mon Dec 14, 2009 6:50 pm



Quoting AirRyan (Reply 89):
From what AW's CEO has previously said about finishing VH-71A's in Increment 1, I don't think even new-build VH-60's could beat the cost of just finishing the VH-71.

Not to nitpick but you are talking about finishing without the "billions" already spent versus purchasing some UH-60M's or even some Bell Jetrangers right?

Quoting AirRyan (Reply 89):
Now hopefully next Spring when they do release a new list of requirements we can get a real picture of just where the VH-71A stands in terms of costs,

Hopefully next spring they launch the competition again from scratch and those who "mucked" up the last award will be placed as far away as possible.
It's funny that unlike the tanker thread, folks seem to forget that this a/c was chosen and a contract signed, it is in the process of being cancelled not because of whose product it is but the MASSIVE cost escalation.

And when dealing with "John Q public" it does strike a chord when someone says that POTUS helicopter cost more than his 747 jumbo  Smile
 
AirRyan
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Mon Dec 14, 2009 8:05 pm

Come now Jacky, I thought you liked the EH-101 from what I remember? You're not still grumbling over the F-35B and the QE CVF, are you? And how about that Villa victory this weekend, chap?

Quoting Par13del (Reply 91):
Not to nitpick but you are talking about finishing without the "billions" already spent versus purchasing some UH-60M's or even some Bell Jetrangers right?

While I think it's always important to include the entire picture, we've already been told COTS VIP aircraft are unacceptable for Marine One use, and so any modernized version of the VH-60N, (which would have to be designed first off in addition to being produced,) I think would be more than what just buying 9 to 11 more VH-71A's in Increment 1 given AW's CEO saying they can finish the run for a straight price.

Quoting Par13del (Reply 91):
it is in the process of being canceled not because of whose product it is but the MASSIVE cost escalation.

But increment 2 and 3 can be SLEP's 10 to 15 years down the road, or something, but in just finishing increment 1 you can no longer continue to argue that the program runs over cost, and even still in Increment 1 the aircraft delivers everything current HMX aircraft do, and yet so much more in terms of range, speed, payload, maintainability, efficiency, reliability, and safety.
 
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Revelation
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Mon Dec 14, 2009 8:25 pm



Quoting AirRyan (Reply 92):
we've already been told COTS VIP aircraft are unacceptable for Marine One use

By who, the former VH-71 team?

Clearly the current folks aren't talking that way:

Quote:
The Pentagon’s acquisition chief, Ashton Carter, said that he hoped to start another presidential helicopter program to replace the decades-old presidential helicopter fleet next spring, “around a reasonable set of requirements and a new acquisition strategy.”

Carter said that in order to keep costs in check, the White House and Pentagon would prefer to use an existing helicopter platform instead of building a new helicopter from scratch.

“Obviously, for affordability’s sake one would like to be able to adapt an existing helicopter rather than start all over on a helicopter. Obviously that would always be our wish,” he said.

You do realize that the VH-71 is still being terminated, right?

Quote:
Now, the agreed-on funds for VH-71 are close to $130 million. However, part of that money would go toward the termination costs of the VH-71.

It seems whatever money is going to LM is to allow it to further develop "mission systems" that may or may not be deployed on a future VIP helo.
Wake up to find out that you are the eyes of the world
The heart has its beaches, its homeland and thoughts of its own
Wake now, discover that you are the song that the morning brings
The heart has its seasons, its evenings and songs of its own
 
Jackonicko
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Mon Dec 14, 2009 8:26 pm

I love the AW101. It's the best helicopter in its class. It's second only to the Chinook, which it beats as a CSAR or VIP platform.

The US DoD should, of course, buy the Increment 1 aircraft. It clearly represents the best value for the taxpayer's dollar.

Anyone with at least half a brain can see that.

It ain't gonna happen.
 
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par13del
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Tue Dec 15, 2009 12:22 am



Quoting AirRyan (Reply 92):
While I think it's always important to include the entire picture, we've already been told COTS VIP aircraft are unacceptable for Marine One use,

By whom, the folks who allowed this project to run off the tracks, there are some serious credibility issues there.

Quoting AirRyan (Reply 92):
But increment 2 and 3 can be SLEP's 10 to 15 years down the road, or something, but in just finishing increment 1 you can no longer continue to argue that the program runs over cost, and even still in Increment 1 the aircraft delivers everything current HMX aircraft do, and yet so much more in terms of range, speed, payload, maintainability, efficiency, reliability, and safety.

My problem with the whole procurement process. Increment 1 a/c are not yet in service and their improvements are already in design phase, makes you wonder what the project would have cost in the initial stages if the proper engine and other enhancements which are being left or deferred were installed in increment 1 and not deferred for 2 or even 3.

Quoting Jackonicko (Reply 94):
The US DoD should, of course, buy the Increment 1 aircraft. It clearly represents the best value for the taxpayer's dollar

For what is the issue, that it is a good a/c is without question, POTUS does not ride in the a/c for more than 30min if that much, and you want to deprive the fighting force of a capable a/c just for that??? The only thing going for the a/c in this light is prestige, giving such a capable a/c to the POTUS is overkill, a silly comparison but it would be like replacing the beast with an M1.  Smile
 
AirRyan
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Tue Dec 15, 2009 5:27 am



Quoting Revelation (Reply 93):
Clearly the current folks aren't talking that way:

The answer is two-fold. Of course things can change at anytime, but after 9/11 it was made abundantly clear that the POTUS needed a lot more than what they already had, and they already had a lot of specific hardware as it is; mission specific encrypted radios/avionics/comms as well as countermeasure equipment that aren't even otherwise available to commercial aircraft.

Quoting Revelation (Reply 93):

You do realize that the VH-71 is still being terminated, right?

Smoke and mirrors, yes. VXX will be re-bid in the Spring and the VH-71A Increment 1 will be funded to at least complete a working copy with all the required mission gear. In turn, it will allow for a toned down version of the VH-71B that was ultimately envisioned in the original VXX award to be bid at a very competitive cost, with little to no further risk.

Quoting Jackonicko (Reply 94):
It's the best helicopter in its class. It's second only to the Chinook, which it beats as a CSAR or VIP platform.

You are referring to an overall hierarchy I'm assuming, (because the two aircraft are not in the same class?) And as far as the Chinook goes, I'd still say a C/MH-53E is every bit as capable as the CH-47, and with the CH-53K it will be the top of the line in the world of heavy rotary-winged lift.

Quoting Par13del (Reply 95):
By whom, the folks who allowed this project to run off the tracks, there are some serious credibility issues there.

The credibility issues are not exactly privy to just one party, and with the way the lack of accountability may just go down the road of the Wise old Owl from the Tootsie Pop commercial - the World may never know.

Quoting Par13del (Reply 95):
POTUS does not ride in the a/c for more than 30min if that much, and you want to deprive the fighting force of a capable a/c just for that???

You are referring to his ride from the White House to Andrews AFB to get on AF1, of which is a very short trip and the reason why a helo was initially brought into the equation. However, there are many trips where the POTUS rides on Marine One much longer than just 30 minutes, and having an aircraft such as the VH-71 with greater speed, range, and payload alone would enable him to get to where he needs to go a lot safer, faster, and more economically.
 
Lumberton
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Tue Dec 15, 2009 10:33 am



Quoting Jackonicko (Reply 94):
the Chinook,

Speaking of which....
Britain orders 22 Chinook military helicopters
"When all is said and done, more will be said than done".
 
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par13del
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Tue Dec 15, 2009 11:31 am



Quoting AirRyan (Reply 96):
but after 9/11 it was made abundantly clear that the POTUS needed a lot more than what they already had, and they already had a lot of specific hardware as it is; mission specific encrypted radios/avionics/comms as well as countermeasure equipment that aren't even otherwise available to commercial aircraft.

I will agree that 9/11 has been used as justification for many things, some have since been removed with no replacements, but that would run this thread off course. Suffice it to say that if the environment that POTUS has to travel through is so bad as to need the massive countermeasure suite and electronics on his helicopter, someone somewhere screwed up, he should have been on the VC-25 which was customized to be ths safest place during an attack on the US.

Quoting AirRyan (Reply 96):
You are referring to his ride from the White House to Andrews AFB to get on AF1, of which is a very short trip and the reason why a helo was initially brought into the equation. However, there are many trips where the POTUS rides on Marine One much longer than just 30 minutes, and having an aircraft such as the VH-71 with greater speed, range, and payload alone would enable him to get to where he needs to go a lot safer, faster, and more economically.

The majority of trips are planned around landing the Air Force One a/c - whichever one - at the nearest secure air base / airport and using the helicopters to the final destination, with proper planning, flights beyond 30mins are small. I have seen pictures of POTUS touring natural disasters in the US onboard the VH-60, if that was because of range and ease of transport to the area the current VH71 is one out of two.

The EH-101 is a good a/c, trying to get it into US inventory via the presidential fleet is not a wise decision in my book, too much a/c.
 
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Revelation
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RE: Last Chance For The VH-71?

Tue Dec 15, 2009 3:27 pm



Quoting AirRyan (Reply 96):
VXX will be re-bid in the Spring and the VH-71A Increment 1 will be funded to at least complete a working copy with all the required mission gear. In turn, it will allow for a toned down version of the VH-71B that was ultimately envisioned in the original VXX award to be bid at a very competitive cost, with little to no further risk.

That's a pretty optimistic rendering.

VXX will be rebid in the spring and surely a VH-71A Inc 1+ will be the favored entry - how could it not be, given how much money they've burned through to get it to this point?

But it will open the door for competitors to counter-bid, keeping LM honest on the pricing, hopefully.

And you never know what may happen in the re-bid!

And hopefully the contract will have some strict cost overrun criteria in it, whomever wins it.

But we won't see anything like VH-71A Inc 2 funded by the current administration, if ever.

The helo truely needs to be off-the-shelf.

There's no way USG will fund the larger rotor, tail boom, etc that makes the Inc 2 so damn costly.

They'll tailor the mission to the helo, not the other way around.

It's too damn costly to push the performance envelope out that far just for this one mission.

Quoting AirRyan (Reply 96):
However, there are many trips where the POTUS rides on Marine One much longer than just 30 minutes, and having an aircraft such as the VH-71 with greater speed, range, and payload alone would enable him to get to where he needs to go a lot safer, faster, and more economically.

Economically? You must be joking.

Quoting Par13del (Reply 98):
Suffice it to say that if the environment that POTUS has to travel through is so bad as to need the massive countermeasure suite and electronics on his helicopter, someone somewhere screwed up, he should have been on the VC-25 which was customized to be ths safest place during an attack on the US.

Indeed. As wonderful as helicopters are, their performance envelope is creamed by fixed wing. Pushing out the edges of that envelope is damn costly, as the failed VH-71 program has proven.
Wake up to find out that you are the eyes of the world
The heart has its beaches, its homeland and thoughts of its own
Wake now, discover that you are the song that the morning brings
The heart has its seasons, its evenings and songs of its own

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Military Aircraft Every type from fighters to helicopters from air forces around the globe

Classic Airliners Props and jets from the good old days

Flight Decks Views from inside the cockpit

Aircraft Cabins Passenger cabin shots showing seat arrangements as well as cargo aircraft interior

Cargo Aircraft Pictures of great freighter aircraft

Government Aircraft Aircraft flying government officials

Helicopters Our large helicopter section. Both military and civil versions

Blimps / Airships Everything from the Goodyear blimp to the Zeppelin

Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon

Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos

Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft

Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries

Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground

Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos