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ThePointblank
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F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

Sun Nov 02, 2014 4:21 am

This is not surprising. Not retiring a type that was supposed to be retired in favour of a new aircraft means you create a delay in getting a new aircraft operational:

http://intercepts.defensenews.com/20...-late-and-its-because-of-the-a-10/

Quote:
The A-10 Warthog, it seems, may have just claimed the Air Force’s F-35 IOC date as its latest victim.

Here’s how it happened. To hit IOC in August 2016, the Air Force has a number of requirements. One of those is to have 1,100 trained maintainers available across the US.

Of that 1,100, the Air Force planned to draw 800 maintainers from the pool of A-10 crews out there. Makes sense, right? The A-10 was being retired and the F-35 spun up, so this is a way to keep experienced maintenance professionals in the service and move them onto the plane of the future.

More at the link.

Basically the situation boils down to this:
- Original USAF plan was to slowly retire F-16's and A-10's as airframes come due for retirement and transition crew over to F-35
- Sequestration plan was to retire the A-10 as an entire fleet sooner, rather than the original draw down plan
- Not retiring the A-10 means that maintainers that were originally slated to be transferred and trained on the F-35 are no longer available, and this creates problems as the Air Force built its requirements for IOC assuming the retirement of the A-10 fleet
- Means 800 of the planned 1,100 maintainers are no longer available; must be drawn from other pools or new maintainers straight from academy; new maintainers will take considerably longer to train, roughly 9-12 months more
 
ThePointblank
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RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

Sun Nov 02, 2014 9:54 am

On related news, F-35 noise testing is complete:

http://www.jsf.mil/news/docs/20141031_F-35_Noise_Executive_Summary.pdf

Some details of the noise tests of the F-35A and B:
1. Notes to make: Noise data is typically measured 135 degrees off nose or 45 degrees off the aircraft tail.
2. Ground noise: at military power, the F-35A is equivalent to the F-16 with the PW-229 engine at 145dB. Only the F-22 and EA-6B are louder. With afterburners, the F-35 is actually a decibel QUIETER than the F-22, F/A-18 E/F, and F-16.
3. Takeoff noise: The F-35 is comparable to existing aircraft. During takeoff, the F-35A (111 dB) is almost equal in noise level to the F-16 with the PW229 engine, and is in fact quieter in two of the three low altitude flight conditions looked at. The F-35B is quieter under all flight conditions compared to the F/A-18 E/F, and is quieter in all but take off than the original F/A-18. Compared to the AV-8B, the F-35B is quieter while in the radar pattern, comparable at arrival and low and go, and only 5dB louder at take off.
 
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SeJoWa
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RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

Sun Nov 02, 2014 11:07 am

The A-10 is too relevant to retire. Just as the F-35 is already obsolescent*, but necessary as a medium term bridge platform. That's truly a lot of money draining away for a temporary fix, but still greatly preferable to further weakening the Air Force.

Taking B1-Bs with a mission readiness rate of roughly 50% out of the fight [ "plinking" is more like it ], and basing A-10Cs in Kurdistan, would finally allow us to get serious about providing CAS to our allies and "allies".

In the context of funds, the A-10 properly employed gains us Dollars. Still, what ails the USAF are not a couple of hundred million per annum required for Thunderbolt II upkeep.

  • Needs a separate thread.
  •  
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    SeJoWa
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Sun Nov 02, 2014 12:58 pm

    Addendum / Mission Capable Rate A-10C

    ...
    Mission capable
    The Air Force currently flies 326 A-10Cs, with an average age of just over 32 years. In fiscal 2013, the jet flew at a 75 percent mission capable rate — the highest in the past five years. The rate at which the aircraft is fixed within 12 hours is 71 percent , the third highest in the Air Force behind the EC-130H Compass Call and MQ-1B Predator.

    The A-10’s mission capable rate is higher than the fighter fleet, except for the F-15E Strike Eagle. No mission capable rates were released for the F-35A because the initial operating capability is still three years away.
    ...

    SOURCE:
    Sep. 23, 2013
    http://www.airforcetimes.com/article...S04/309230002/Future-10s-uncertain



    ...
    The least ready aircraft in the Air Force’s fleet in fiscal 2014 is also one of its busiest — the B-1B Lancer. The long-range strike bomber saw a mission capable rate of 47.7 percent in fiscal 2014, down from 57.7 percent the year before. The aircraft saw a 23.2 percent break rate in 2014, with 38.4 percent of those fixed within 12 hours
    ...
    SOURCE:
    Oct. 13, 2014
    http://www.airforcetimes.com/article...ey-needed-keep-aging-fleets-flying



    Aircraft Total Avg. age ’09 ’10 ’11 ’12 ’13
    A-10C 326 32.3 69.8 69.0 71.6 74.1 75.2
    ...
    B-1B 63 26.0 45.4 43.8 53.2 56.8 57.9
    B-2A 20 19.1 51.3 54.9 49.2 51.3 46.7
    B-52H 76 51.7 71.3 74.6 76.8 78.3 75.3
    ...
    F-15C 214 29.4 71.4 71.1 65.4 69.5 73.1
    F-15D 35 29.9 80.4 77.4 68.1 70.6 74.1
    F-15E 219 21.4 75.7 72.5 72.3 76.1 79.3
    F-16C 840 22.8 75.0 75.5 74.1 73.4 74.5
    F-16D 161 23.4 75.6 74.8 73.8 72.8 71.0
    F-22A 186 5.9 62.9 60.9 62.7 69.1 69.1
    F-35A 23 0.9 N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A

    SOURCE:
    Readiness declines in aging, overworked fleet
    Oct. 2, 2013
    http://www.airforcetimes.com/article...ss-declines-aging-overworked-fleet



    [Edited 2014-11-02 05:03:09]
     
    Ozair
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Sun Nov 02, 2014 7:46 pm

    Quoting ThePointblank (Thread starter):
    Not retiring the A-10 means that maintainers that were originally slated to be transferred and trained on the F-35 are no longer available, and this creates problems as the Air Force built its requirements for IOC assuming the retirement of the A-10 fleet

    If that is the case it is very disappointing. Given the delays, the USAF has had ample time to prepare to F-35A IOC. Irrespective of whether the A-10 was going to be retired or not, and A-10s retiring early has only been the plan for the last couple of years, this should have been planned better.

    Quoting SeJoWa (Reply 2):
    Just as the F-35 is already obsolescent*

    Needs a separate thread.

    So start it and we can again prove what you're suggesting is incorrect.

    Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 1):
    F-35 noise testing is complete

    The noise levels are comparable to what was tested in 2008.
    http://s98.photobucket.com/user/Spaz...dia/JetEngineNoiseApr2009.gif.html
     
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    kc135topboom
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Sun Nov 02, 2014 10:25 pm

    Quoting ThePointblank (Thread starter):
    ThePointblank
    Quoting Ozair (Reply 4):
    Ozair

    This does not make any sense. Someone in the USAF is not being completely honest about the 1100 maintainers for IOC in 2016.

    Most of the A-10s are in the ANG and AFRES, not many in the active USAF. IIRC there are just 6 squadrons of USAF active duty A-10s.
     
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Sun Nov 02, 2014 11:06 pm

    Quoting Ozair (Reply 4):
    Given the delays, the USAF has had ample time to prepare to F-35A IOC. Irrespective of whether the A-10 was going to be retired or not, and A-10s retiring early has only been the plan for the last couple of years, this should have been planned better.

       It is obvious.
     
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Sun Nov 02, 2014 11:42 pm

    Quoting Ozair (Reply 4):
    Quoting SeJoWa (Reply 2):
    Just as the F-35 is already obsolescent*

    Needs a separate thread.

    So start it and we can again prove what you're suggesting is incorrect.

    When have we discussed advanced swarm warfare? As it happens, there finally is some intellectual movement building up to critical mass in this area.
     
    ThePointblank
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Mon Nov 03, 2014 1:37 am

    Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 5):

    This does not make any sense. Someone in the USAF is not being completely honest about the 1100 maintainers for IOC in 2016.

    Most of the A-10s are in the ANG and AFRES, not many in the active USAF. IIRC there are just 6 squadrons of USAF active duty A-10s.

    Who's fixing the jets and doing the depot overhauls? Very likely active force USAF technicians.

    Also, there are a total of 8 active USAF squadrons (plus a test and evaluation squadron and a weapons squadron) operating the A-10 right now. Just over half the A-10's are in active force USAF, not reserve or ANG.

    Quoting Ozair (Reply 4):

    If that is the case it is very disappointing. Given the delays, the USAF has had ample time to prepare to F-35A IOC. Irrespective of whether the A-10 was going to be retired or not, and A-10s retiring early has only been the plan for the last couple of years, this should have been planned better.

    If anything, the USAF counted on being able to draw down existing squadrons to convert into F-35 squadrons. Congress just told the USAF that they can't draw down A-10 squadrons that were slated to be drawn down anyways, so that creates a wrinkle in the USAF's plans. Sequestration made things worst by cutting the number of personnel available in the pool to begin with.

    It shows that the USAF is being forced to keep the A-10s flying concurrently with F-35A IOC despite changes in the budgetary environment. It shows that the USAF is trying to adjust to having less money, but is not allowed to. Eventually, the lack of wiggle room the USAF has will eventually come home to roost.

    [Edited 2014-11-02 17:55:36]
     
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Mon Nov 03, 2014 1:58 am

    Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 8):
    Who's fixing the jets and doing the depot overhauls? Very likely active force USAF technicians.

    In the case of the ANG and AFRES jets, they do their own maintenance. Depot work is done by USAF civil service guys for the most part. Many of the Reserve component troops are very, very experienced.

    Since the USAF is getting smaller, the powers to be seem to think that airplanes are fixed by a software update, or somehow by themselves. As reliable and great as the A-10 is, it still has to be fixed....

    The tactic of today is rob Peter to pay Paul. Rob the A-10 maintainers, and the A-10 will crumble, the F-35 can then take over.

    This has happened to the C-5M. Only provide minimal manning, and minimal training in the new systems. The reliability results are worse than the legacy C-5B. I don't know what the desired results are, but it isn't good.
     
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Mon Nov 03, 2014 1:58 am

    Quoting SeJoWa (Reply 7):
    When have we discussed advanced swarm warfare?

    There may have been references to it previously but please start a thread as I would be interested to read any source material available on the concept.

    Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 5):
    This does not make any sense. Someone in the USAF is not being completely honest about the 1100 maintainers for IOC in 2016.

    Agree, I also question why 1100 maintainers are required. USAF squadrons load up their personnel numbers significantly higher than most other Air Forces but 1100 still seems absurd to meet IOC. I doubt the F-22 IOC'ed with 1100 maintainers.

    I can't find a figure so am curious to know how many squadrons of F-35A the USAF has to have to declare IOC? Sounds like someone may have tried to cut a corner with funding and has now been found out.

    Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 5):
    IIRC there are just 6 squadrons of USAF active duty A-10s.

    Does the USAF have six active A-10 squadrons though? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of...tates_Air_Force_aircraft_squadrons
     
    ThePointblank
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Mon Nov 03, 2014 4:35 am

    Quoting JohnM (Reply 9):
    Since the USAF is getting smaller, the powers to be seem to think that airplanes are fixed by a software update, or somehow by themselves. As reliable and great as the A-10 is, it still has to be fixed....

    The tactic of today is rob Peter to pay Paul. Rob the A-10 maintainers, and the A-10 will crumble, the F-35 can then take over.

    Since the retirement of the A-10 was already planned, and sequestration was going to move that date up, I would say that was the intention. The USAF thought that with the planned retirement of the A-10 next decade, they could move people from A-10 squadrons to stand up F-35 squadrons.
     
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    kanban
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Mon Nov 03, 2014 4:53 am

    question: is the 1000 the total needed on day one, or the end number needed ..

    If they are all not needed on day , there must me a build-up line that starts much lower..

    second question, how many are currently assigned to the F-35?
     
    L-188
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Thu Nov 06, 2014 7:39 am

    Just another Air Force General who hates the ground support mission trying to find excuses to kill the A-10.

    I have yet to see one that cared one whit about keeping Army ground troops alive
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    ThePointblank
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Thu Nov 06, 2014 8:58 am

    Quoting L-188 (Reply 13):
    Just another Air Force General who hates the ground support mission trying to find excuses to kill the A-10.

    I have yet to see one that cared one whit about keeping Army ground troops alive

    The USAF commander, General Welsh? He flew and was an instructor pilot flying A-10's.

    And the USAF DOES care about ground forces. CAS is a capability, of which currently many platforms in the USAF is capable of performing to differing degrees, not a platform. There are many ways to skin the cat if you will. Notice how the USAF quickly integrated the Sniper targeting pod to both the B-1 and B-52, allowing them to find and self-designate targets for their bombs in a armed overwatch role, watching friendly forces and providing instant support if ground forces become engaged.
     
    ThePointblank
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Wed Nov 12, 2014 4:03 am

    The USAF is discussing with Congress a plan that would result in the retirement of 72 A-10's and switching the personnel from the 3 active duty squadrons over to the F-35:

    AF-Discussing-10-Compromise-Congress" target="_blank">http://www.defensenews.com/article/2...-Discussing-10-Compromise-Congress

    Quote:
    The US Air Force is trying to work out a compromise with Congress to retire a percentage of the A-10 fleet in order to move maintainers to the F-35 joint strike fighter, according to two service officials.

    The Air Force is in discussion with congressional leaders about the possibility of retiring three active-duty squadrons, or roughly 72 A-10 aircraft. While that is well short of retiring the whole fleet, even this targeted retirement would help with what the service is describing as a major crunch in available maintenance personnel.

    One service official said the idea is “getting some positive feedback” from staffers on the Hill.

    The Air Force has spent most of 2014 fighting with Congress over the proposed retirement of the A-10. While service leaders argue the cut would save significant funds, those on the Hill have expressed deep concerns over retiring the plane, beloved by soldiers on the ground, at a time of ongoing conflict around the globe.

    A new issue has emerged in the last month, however, with the service saying the planned operational date for its F-35A joint strike fighters may be threatened if the A-10 is not retired.

    In order to reach initial operational capability (IOC), the F-35A needs 1,100 trained maintainers. The bulk of those were being drawn from the A-10 fleet. Until the A-10s are retired, those maintainers cannot be trained and shifted over to the complicated F-35, leaving that IOC date at risk.

    “I am very worried now that my promise to [the Air Force] to give them all the things they need to declare IOC on Aug. 1 of 2016 I might not be able to give them,” Lt. Gen. Chris Bogdan, the F-35 program executive, told reporters Oct. 30 in what amounted to the first public acknowledgment of the maintainer issue.
     
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Fri Nov 14, 2014 12:30 pm

    Congress Likely To Reject A-10 Partial Retirement Plan
    Nov. 13, 2014 - 07:16PM

    ...
    While the majority of those speaking were Republicans, the A-10 issue is one of the very few that has brought members of both parties and chambers together in an otherwise harshly divided Congress.
    ...

    http://www.defensenews.com/article/2...-Reject-10-Partial-Retirement-Plan


    The upgraded A-10C is one of the few affordable airplanes we have - more so when basing flexibilty and its logistical tail are included in the appraisal. The ability to conduct a very low level bombing campaign from al Dhafra and Navy carriers is nice, but using B-1Bs with a mission capable rate of 47% [afaik, currently under 50%] for their persistance is very costly.

    [Edited 2014-11-14 04:40:08]
     
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Fri Nov 14, 2014 1:40 pm

    Quoting ThePointblank (Thread starter):
    Not retiring a type that was supposed to be retired

    I don't know about you, but when I do something I know my boss isn't going to like, I'm not surprised when I end up in a jam.

    Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 15):
    The Air Force has spent most of 2014 fighting with Congress over the proposed retirement of the A-10. While service leaders argue the cut would save significant funds, those on the Hill have expressed deep concerns over retiring the plane, beloved by soldiers on the ground, at a time of ongoing conflict around the globe.

    Indeed, highly predictable that Congress is NOT interested in any plan that retires the A-10.

    USAF is doing its usual shit of dumping equipment the taxpayers have already paid for so they can get their Shiny New Jets.

    No surprise that Congress isn't buying it.
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    kanban
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Fri Nov 14, 2014 5:24 pm

    So the question comes back to:
    What is the recovery plan to create the staff of maintenance personnel necessary for F-35 deployment? How long will that take? And why the heck have they been sitting on their arses hoping for a windfall of experienced personnel ?
    Even if Congress approved A-10 retirement concurrent with F-35 deployment, these maintenance personnel will require extensive retraining and be unavailable for what a year?.
     
    ThePointblank
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Fri Nov 14, 2014 7:17 pm

    Quoting SeJoWa (Reply 16):

    The upgraded A-10C is one of the few affordable airplanes we have - more so when basing flexibilty and its logistical tail are included in the appraisal. The ability to conduct a very low level bombing campaign from al Dhafra and Navy carriers is nice, but using B-1Bs with a mission capable rate of 47% [afaik, currently under 50%] for their persistance is very costly.

    And yet the B-1 can do more things; maritime strike, strategic bombing, and interdiction. It's a even more flexible platform.

    Quoting Revelation (Reply 17):
    I don't know about you, but when I do something I know my boss isn't going to like, I'm not surprised when I end up in a jam.

    The A-10's retirement under a previous plan was accepted years by lawmakers. It's more of schizophrenic boss situation.

    The Air Force is replacing F-16's and A-10's with F-35s, and that has been the plan all along. As such, the USAF has been retiring A-10's as they've been hitting their end of life. The Air Force plan under sequestration was/is to retire the A-10 FLEET sooner.

    Not retiring A-10s to the previously planned schedule will impact availability of maintainers to support incoming F-35's irregardless of the fleet phase out date. Sequestration just makes it worse, especially when you are being forced to remove 18,700 air men from the ranks of the USAF. It is shameless to spin stories otherwise.

    All this is showing is that the USAF is being forced to keep the A-10's flying concurrently with F-35A IOC despite changes in the budgetary environment. It shows that the USAF is trying to adjust to having less money, but is not allowed to.

    The simple story? Sequestration; all this headache goes away if Congress and the House reverses or adjusts sequestration. The USAF is more than willing to keep A-10's in the inventory as long as you want; as long as someone is willing to pay for them. It's really that simple. It's an easy fix, fix sequestration and the pet A-10 will be just fine.

    Quoting Revelation (Reply 17):

    USAF is doing its usual shit of dumping equipment the taxpayers have already paid for so they can get their Shiny New Jets.

    More of Congress protecting its pet aircraft than anything else. How many times has Congress stuffed equipment down the throats of each of the services even though the services have all said they didn't need that many or at all in the first place?

    What will now happen is that cuts will be made in more critical areas such as F-15C, KC-10 etc. which are arguably more useful and relevant than the A-10. What does the A-10 do exactly as a mission that can't be done by something else, and is it worth paying to keep it in service to to do it?
     
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Sat Nov 15, 2014 12:05 am

    Quoting SeJoWa (Reply 16):
    Congress Likely To Reject A-10 Partial Retirement Plan
    Nov. 13, 2014 - 07:16PM

    ...
    While the majority of those speaking were Republicans, the A-10 issue is one of the very few that has brought members of both parties and chambers together in an otherwise harshly divided Congress.
    Quoting Revelation (Reply 17):
    Indeed, highly predictable that Congress is NOT interested in any plan that retires the A-10.

    So wait.... Congress does know what it is doing and is doing a good job on this one specific thing? Why does anyone here think that Congress is any more adept and intelligent in its abilities regarding the A-10 than it normally is?

    So which is it? Congress is competent and knows what it is doing and the military is self serving and incompetent.... or the other way around?

    Tugg
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    JohnM
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Sat Nov 15, 2014 2:36 am

    Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 19):
    And yet the B-1 can do more things; maritime strike, strategic bombing, and interdiction. It's a even more flexible platform.

    The B-1 has one of the worst MC rates in DOD. I thought the C-5 was bad, however some of my former co workers who worked the bone and the C-5 told me the B-1 was a much bigger pain in the ass to keep MC. The small B-1 fleet can't do everything if it is not MC, and out there dropping bombs. The A-10 is a good platform for a low intensity conflict....just what we have had since 2001.

    The A-10 has in the past, and continues to this day to have excellent MC rates. The F-35 doing the OIF/OEF missions is like using a cement mixer to deliver pizza. Expensive overkill.

    Remember the Vietnam War when the A-1 was pulled out of retirement for CAS? The A-10 is the A-1 of today. Junk it if you can guarantee that all future conflict will be high intensity. If not, keep it in service.
     
    ThePointblank
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Sat Nov 15, 2014 7:06 am

    Quoting JohnM (Reply 21):
    The A-10 is a good platform for a low intensity conflict....just what we have had since 2001.

    The Air Force should be equipped to fight the high intensity conflicts, such as nation-state vs nation-state conflicts, not be predominately geared to fight low intensity conflicts. It is much easier for a military that is equipped to fight a high intensity conflict to adapt to a low intensity conflict, than the other way around.

    Quoting JohnM (Reply 21):
    Remember the Vietnam War when the A-1 was pulled out of retirement for CAS? The A-10 is the A-1 of today. Junk it if you can guarantee that all future conflict will be high intensity. If not, keep it in service.

    Nice re-writing of history.

    The A-1 still equipped a number of USN carrier air wings at the start of the Vietnam War, with the A-6 Intruder being brought online during the conflict. In fact, A-1's participated in the US response to the Gulf of Tonkin incident. Eventually, all A-1's were retired by the USN and then the USAF in favour of A-6's, A-7's and A-4's, with the retired units passed onto the South Vietnamese Air Force.

    Towards the end of the conflict, even the South Vietnamese were beginning to phase out the A-1, as they received A-37's and F-5's.
     
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    kanban
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Sun Nov 16, 2014 5:20 pm

    Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 19):

    so what is the recovery plan or did the military put all their eggs in a basket (again)?..

    What's odd is the military has a lot of personnel returning that would probably jump at the chance to be trained in aircraft maintenance, but are they?
     
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Sun Nov 16, 2014 7:16 pm

    Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 19):

    Quoting SeJoWa (Reply 16):

    The upgraded A-10C is one of the few affordable airplanes we have - more so when basing flexibilty and its logistical tail are included in the appraisal. The ability to conduct a very low level bombing campaign from al Dhafra and Navy carriers is nice, but using B-1Bs with a mission capable rate of 47% [afaik, currently under 50%] for their persistance is very costly.

    And yet the B-1 can do more things; maritime strike, strategic bombing, and interdiction. It's a even more flexible platform.

    The B-1B has turned out to be great in a conventional role - it's undeniable. I'm simply shocked by the fact that under 40 Bones are combat ready at any one time. And the price of flying those missions is incomparably higher than when using our CAS champion.

    I had a strange thought in passing - using adapted P-8s in an anti-insurgency role. Combined with air-dropped, expendable ground surveillance sensors. Looking up the Poseidon's paramenters, and keeping in mind several manned crew stations could come in handy. Enormous logistical advantages. Loiter time of 4 hours+.

    Quoting JohnM (Reply 21):
    Remember the Vietnam War when the A-1 was pulled out of retirement for CAS? The A-10 is the A-1 of today. Junk it if you can guarantee that all future conflict will be high intensity. If not, keep it in service.

    Agree with your post in general, except that the A-10C can use modern ordnance effectively, and - I believe - offers substantial potential for future modular upgrades. Lastly, we can afford hundreds of them, paired with specialist pilots.

    See also

    TACP Association joins lawmakers in opposing A-10 cuts
    By Brian Everstine, Staff writer 7:47 p.m. EST November 13, 2014

    For the first time, the largest group of tactical air control party airmen have joined with lawmakers to publicly oppose the Air Force's plan to retire the A-10 Thunderbolt II, a jet beloved by troops on the ground ...

    http://www.airforcetimes.com/story/m...p-airmen-oppose-a10-cuts/18979861/
     
    ThePointblank
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Mon Nov 17, 2014 2:02 am

    Quoting kanban (Reply 23):

    so what is the recovery plan or did the military put all their eggs in a basket (again)?..

    This was the recovery plan. Sequestration killed the original plan.

    Quoting kanban (Reply 23):
    What's odd is the military has a lot of personnel returning that would probably jump at the chance to be trained in aircraft maintenance, but are they?

    The USAF was directed to eliminate 20,400 air men from the ranks of the USAF by 2015. They have to eliminate 25,000 air men from their ranks by 2016. They have NO money to pay for personnel out of the personnel budget, thanks to sequestration. What personnel are you talking about?

    Quoting SeJoWa (Reply 24):
    Agree with your post in general, except that the A-10C can use modern ordnance effectively, and - I believe - offers substantial potential for future modular upgrades. Lastly, we can afford hundreds of them, paired with specialist pilots.

    Except the A-10C fleet needs to be completely re-winged at a total program cost of $2.4 billion dollars and climbing; eliminating the A-10 eliminates that cost.

    The issue is that not all A-10's were built to the same structural standards; what prompted the re-winging program was back in 2004, a A-10 wing during a structural fatigue test to determine estimated remaining life expectancy failed catastrophically during a load test at less than 60% load capacity. The birds affected just happened to be the majority of the A-10 fleet.
     
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    kanban
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Mon Nov 17, 2014 5:42 am

    If that is the Air Force back up plan, and they are just realizing the problem.. we're in deep trouble as far as leadership.. now are the Navy and marines in the same boat? ..

    The Military as a total has surplus men.. Is the Air Force so proud that they won't use a Navy mechanic..

    Or is this whole issue just another Air Force vs Congress positioning exercise?
     
    ThePointblank
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Mon Nov 17, 2014 7:23 am

    Quoting kanban (Reply 26):
    The Military as a total has surplus men.. Is the Air Force so proud that they won't use a Navy mechanic..

    The US military is not an integrated service. The Army is separate from the Navy, and is separate from the Air Force. Very little sharing of personnel beyond servicemen and women on exchanges with each other.

    While for smaller militaries, it is a necessity to be unified at the higher levels, even then, there is very limited transfers of personnel between services. Each service has its own traditions, unique training, and socialization.

    Basically, your line of thinking smacks of a very 1950's "efficiency expert" utilitarianism that doesn't really understand or take into account the human side of a military force. Basic training, for example, is only partly about teaching physical skills or technical knowledge. More importantly, it's about taking somebody who thinks "I am a civilian" and shaping them into somebody who believes " I am a soldier/sailor/airman/marine", and that's unique for every single service.

    Thus the argument about going to a unified basic training methodology might make eminent sense from a utilitarian, rationalist, process-oriented point of view, while from the "stewardship of the profession" point of view it has been demonstrated to be short of corrosive. While parts of services that have suffered from this may have retained some form of individual identity, the support services suffered, with noticeable performance issues.
     
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    kanban
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Mon Nov 17, 2014 5:50 pm

    We may not be integrated, however they do borrow between services.. my neighbor (Naval Security) was loaned to the Army for duty in Iraq.. and he said he wasn't the only one..

    So to keep "pride" and service separateness you would let your vaunted Air Force F-35 sit .. Funny you did not answer the question about the Navy/Marines.. Here we have the touted "common" one size fits all airplane yet at least one service is too stubborn to resolve a manpower shortage..

    There is a reason civilians should oversee the militaries.. and these crazy lines in the sand are one of them. We have wasted enormous moneys on inter service rivalry, maybe it's time for the childish nonsense to end.
     
    JohnM
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Mon Nov 17, 2014 10:28 pm

    Quoting kanban (Reply 28):
    So to keep "pride" and service separateness you would let your vaunted Air Force F-35 sit .. Funny you did not answer the question about the Navy/Marines.. Here we have the touted "common" one size fits all airplane yet at least one service is too stubborn to resolve a manpower shortage..

    I hear what you are saying but....The reality of how the services are organized to do aircraft maint are very complex. To take somebody off the street, send them to basic training, tech training, and then airframe specific training is costly, and time consuming. The USAF has some very large and systems intense aircraft (C-5, B-1, B-52, E-3, the list goes on) that require very long local training schools, and sometimes years of hands on to even get close to being productive on those aircraft. Did I mention we have 4 year enlistments? It is not as simple as grabbing a Navy F-18 mechanic and telling him/her to fix a F-35 or even a "simple" A-10. If you don't want hurt/dead people and ruined aircraft you need experienced and qualified troops. Ramp it up and get somebody engine run qualified for example, it takes a long time to do that. All the while lots of people bail out at 4 years, get orders to a new airframe, etc. Add to the mix the military is getting smaller, so less manning is available, which is almost a death spiral.

    Of course the USMC/USN do tech data one way, the Army another, and USAF T.O.s are different per airframe. To change this will take decades and billions of $. Some folks on here think that you send a newbie to F-35 FTD (field training detachment), and out walks an experienced technician. It will take a long time, especially with a new jet.
     
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    kanban
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Tue Nov 18, 2014 12:32 am

    Quoting JohnM (Reply 29):

    I can agree with you.. what concerns me is OK we have a new a/p.. nobody (except test flight maintenance) knows the plane.. yet we all agree learning in not an over night refresher course.. so even if the A-10s went away tomorrow.. there's still much training to do.. Now one branch has stuck their heads in the sand and will be unprepared..and they appear to have no plan..

    So isn't this an ideal time to start a better and more robust process?
     
    ThePointblank
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Tue Nov 18, 2014 2:11 am

    Quoting kanban (Reply 30):
    I can agree with you.. what concerns me is OK we have a new a/p.. nobody (except test flight maintenance) knows the plane.. yet we all agree learning in not an over night refresher course.. so even if the A-10s went away tomorrow.. there's still much training to do.. Now one branch has stuck their heads in the sand and will be unprepared..and they appear to have no plan..

    Retraining experienced maintainers will 9-12 months quicker, compared to training a new recruit. The USAF was expecting they could fill the 1,100 experienced maintainers by IOC with 800 from the A-10 pool. Now, they aren't being allowed to do so, nor are they allowed to draw down existing units incrementally, and above all, they are being forced to make deep cuts in authorized personnel.

    The Bottom Line: The USAF is not staying at the same size; Congress is forcing the USAF to SHRINK without allowing the USAF to re-allocate staff. THAT'S the issue here.
     
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    mayor
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Tue Nov 18, 2014 6:00 am

    Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 19):
    What does the A-10 do exactly as a mission that can't be done by something else, and is it worth paying to keep it in service to to do it?

    What's the pricetag (currently) for the F-35, in Air Force guise? In some future conflict will any commander be willing to send those a/c in ground support missions, considering how expensive they are?

    Quoting kanban (Reply 26):
    Is the Air Force so proud that they won't use a Navy mechanic..

    You can turn that around and say that the Air Force probably doesn't have many mechanics that don't suffer from seasickness.  



    Very little overlap (if any) in a/c types between the Air Force, Navy/Marines and Army. Ever seen a F-111 in Navy markings? Me neither, because Sec'y McNamara didn't get his wish for an a/c that both the Navy and Air Force could use. The Navy didn't want it, so the Air Force was stuck with an a/c that they probably didn't want either and wasn't fully realized until the FB-111 came along.
    "A committee is a group of the unprepared, appointed by the unwilling, to do the unnecessary"----Fred Allen
     
    ThePointblank
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Tue Nov 18, 2014 7:01 am

    Quoting mayor (Reply 32):
    What's the pricetag (currently) for the F-35, in Air Force guise? In some future conflict will any commander be willing to send those a/c in ground support missions, considering how expensive they are?

    What's the price tag for a brand new, fully kitted out F-16 complete with avionics, targeting pods, and jammers? Hint: going to be very similar.

    And the USAF is MORE than willing to send F-16's and F-15E's (which are more expensive) out for ground support missions.

    CAS is evolving with new technology; advanced sensors and precision munitions have really changed the game. Flying low and slow is no longer as necessary as it was 30 years ago. We have advanced sensors, such as high resolution ground mapping synthetic aperture radar with ground moving target indicator technology, advanced IR and night vision systems capable of detecting and tracking weapons fire being fitted to fighters. We are also adding high bandwidth data links that allow for information sharing between various assets, and Blue Force tracking allowing us to enhance one's situational awareness. And finally, very accurate weapons that reduce the risks to friendly forces nearby and reduced collateral damage, while being even more lethal to the enemy. Warfare has changed big time.

    [Edited 2014-11-17 23:03:10]
     
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    SeJoWa
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Tue Nov 18, 2014 12:22 pm

    Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 25):
    Quoting SeJoWa (Reply 24):
    Agree with your post in general, except that the A-10C can use modern ordnance effectively, and - I believe - offers substantial potential for future modular upgrades. Lastly, we can afford hundreds of them, paired with specialist pilots.

    Except the A-10C fleet needs to be completely re-winged at a total program cost of $2.4 billion dollars and climbing; eliminating the A-10 eliminates that cost.

    The issue is that not all A-10's were built to the same structural standards; what prompted the re-winging program was back in 2004, a A-10 wing during a structural fatigue test to determine estimated remaining life expectancy failed catastrophically during a load test at less than 60% load capacity. The birds affected just happened to be the majority of the A-10 fleet.

    The re-winging was budgeted for, and has been proceeding for some years now - keeping the Thunderbolt II airworthy to 2035 at least. No big savings there. On the other hand, hundreds of cheap A-10Cs and their specialized pilots allow other planes to be employed where their strengths are best matched to the task.

    Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 33):
    Warfare has changed big time.



    It's only the opening move.
     
    ThePointblank
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Wed Nov 19, 2014 4:14 am

    Quoting SeJoWa (Reply 34):
    The re-winging was budgeted for, and has been proceeding for some years now - keeping the Thunderbolt II airworthy to 2035 at least. No big savings there.

    You do realize the upgrade programs got underway before Sequestration was underway, right? Upgrade activities in any FY is usually based on decisions made in prior FYs. The USAF wasn't going to start axing A-10 programs unless they had to, and they only had to once Sequestration was law.

    Quoting SeJoWa (Reply 34):
    strengths are best matched to the task.

    Which is... none. Any conflict where the enemy is more capable than a bunch of Mujahideen armed with AK's, RPG's and machine guns will pretty keep the A-10 at home, or have some many restrictions placed on them that you might as well have kept them home.
     
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Thu Nov 20, 2014 2:46 pm

    Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 35):
    Quoting SeJoWa (Reply 34):
    strengths are best matched to the task.

    Which is... none. Any conflict where the enemy is more capable than a bunch of Mujahideen armed with AK's, RPG's and machine guns will pretty keep the A-10 at home, or have some many restrictions placed on them that you might as well have kept them home.


    That's a cultural issue. Having Pointblank as your user name, I take it you're familiar with that Operation. Once things don't go our way in a serious conflict, and there's not enough of everything, attitudes can change very quickly. I hope it doesn't come to that. Also and crucially, with the right upgrades, there's plenty of potential in the platform.

    It's also a cultural issue that we have tied ourselves in knots for the present op in the ME, predictably [ !!! ] doing things in the most inefficient and expensive manner. The price of detached indecisiveness. No excuses for a lack of speed, aggressiveness, forethought, oversight, and measured follow through.

    The French have done it right in Mali - they do know the terrain. Still, rapid strike combined with a measured and sustainable build up, while sorting out bumps after smashing into the enemy cought on the wrong foot. Smart. Notice I'm not advocating rashness. Just rapid close contact in a place of our choosing to grasp the initiative.

    Just as stealth of varying levels decays as an advantage over time, non-stealthy platforms can make gains. It would be foolish to relinquish the upside inherent in a force of heterogenous platforms. We're specialists in being foolish, I'm afraid.

    Well, this at least portends [ sequester inspired? ] a degree of coherence:

    Future Vertical Lift Begins Open Software Quest
    on November 19, 2014
    http://breakingdefense.com/2014/11/f...l-lift-begins-open-software-quest/
     
    checksixx
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Fri Nov 21, 2014 9:50 am

    Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 25):
    Except the A-10C fleet needs to be completely re-winged at a total program cost of $2.4 billion dollars and climbing; eliminating the A-10 eliminates that cost.

    That contract was awarded a while ago and is irrelevant here. So is the idea that somehow there will be some maintainer shortage because we keep the A-10 around. That's laughable. I guess if they had to have them overnight there would be an issue, but the pipeline training is already being primed. There is no issue here. The whole subject became news simply because one camp wanted to rile things up a bit.
     
    Kiwirob
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Fri Nov 21, 2014 11:56 am

    Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 35):
    Any conflict where the enemy is more capable than a bunch of Mujahideen armed with AK's, RPG's and machine guns will pretty keep the A-10 at home

    So why have attack choppers which are even more vulnerable? They are more expensive and when one goes down you lose 2 crew instead of 1.
     
    ThePointblank
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Sat Nov 22, 2014 4:24 am

    Quoting SeJoWa (Reply 36):
    Once things don't go our way in a serious conflict, and there's not enough of everything, attitudes can change very quickly.

    Mission planners will put the appropriate assets on a mission based upon their value and the level of risks involved. If the mission is too dangerous for a particular asset, then they either find other assets that can do the job, or pull in more assets to protect and mitigate risks.

    Quoting SeJoWa (Reply 36):
    Also and crucially, with the right upgrades, there's plenty of potential in the platform.

    Except when the aircraft is at its limits of being upgraded.

    Quoting SeJoWa (Reply 36):
    Just as stealth of varying levels decays as an advantage over time, non-stealthy platforms can make gains.

    If certain systems make stealthy platforms more vulnerable, they will make any non-stealthy platform even more vulnerable.

    Quoting SeJoWa (Reply 36):
    It would be foolish to relinquish the upside inherent in a force of heterogenous platforms.

    It's even more foolish to ignore the issues regarding a force that is not homogenous in capabilities.

    We have this issue today; for example, not all F-16's can employ the same weapons as effectively as other F-16's in the USAF's inventory. Some airframes are fully capable of employing the HARM missile to its fullest extent, while others can't. At a more higher up level, say in a coalition campaign, this causes a lot of headaches; for example, and we had this in the past, certain coalition partners, while contributing assets, could not be fully integrated with other coalition partners because their assets didn't have certain capabilities while a similar asset the USAF has the level of capabilities required.

    This creates issues with force planning; it sometimes means certain units are used more heavily and thus additional strain is placed on those assets, while other assets sit on the ground waiting a call for another mission because they aren't capable of performing the planned mission.

    Even at the flight line level, it is important that assets have the same level of capabilities. For example, with F-16 units, they are typically either a 18 aircraft or 24 aircraft units. There are two different configurations, a training configuration, which is either an air-to-air configuration, basically a clean airplane with no wing tanks, no centerline tank or possibly a centerline tank, and an air-to-ground configuration that’s going to consist of two wing tanks along with wing pylons in order to carry ordinance on the wings.

    If it’s an operational unit, most likely it’ll have an ECM pod on the centerline station, so it’s a dirty configuration. It’s a configuration that’s limited in Gs. It’s limited in AOA. It’s limited in what you can do with the airplane training-wise as you can't push the aircraft as hard you want during training as a result. The benefit out of having that dirtier configuration with wing tanks, ECM pod, pylons in the wings is that it’s actually in the deployment configuration that if you had to go to war tomorrow, it’s ready to go.

    With operational units, generally, a 24 aircraft unit is able to probably do a normal turn cycle of a 12 aircraft on the first go and then ten aircraft on the second or third go and then you’d have two or three spares available to keep up with the operational tempo.

    A key challenge maintenance has in that kind of situation is they would have to have a ratio of air-to-air configured jets and air-to-ground configured jets, something like eight air-to-ground and four air-to-air and then probably one spare per configuration, and all it does is add to complexity on the flight line.

    It takes a period of time to shift from one configuration to the other, so you basically have a mixed fleet from the standpoint of two basic types of configurations, air-to-air and air-to-ground in your units so that you can deal with the complexity of the challenges the unit might deal with everyday. Multiply this by the number of units that may be deployed, plus the fact that you have different types on the flight line, and it creates an incredible strain with mission planning and supportability.

    The beauty about the F-35 is that theoretically you’re going to have one configuration, you’re going to have 24 F-35's sitting on a ramp in the same basic configuration with no wing tanks, there are no pods to attach, you don’t have to attach pylons. The training configuration is the same as the deployment and war configuration. That means that instead of having 4 configurations, you only have 1 configuration to worry about, which increases the number of assets available for missions, even though the total number of assets is reduced or the same.

    If you are a maintainer trying to keep operational tempo up in a unit, this has real impact. As an concrete example, notionally, a normal turn on a day-to-day training kind of schedule for an F-16 unit will be 24 permanently assigned aircraft squadron.They’re going to probably try to put up a 12-front, maybe a 14-front, 12 airplane or 14 airplane on their a.m. schedule.

    Let’s say they have an a.m. and a p.m. schedule, they’re going to try to put up a 12-front. What this means is 12 airplanes on the schedule with probably two or maybe three spares. That’s a total of 14 or 15 total airplanes dedicated to the a.m. go and of those 14 or 15 airplanes, configuration-wise, four of them are going to be on the air-to-air training lines and then eight or ten, depending on how many front lines there are, will be an air-to-ground configuration and then their spares will be divided equally. So probably one air-to-air spare and either one or two air-to-ground spares depending on frontlines.

    And then on the p.m. go, you will probably have airplanes come back and some will need repair, and you are not going to plan to fail here. What you will do is plan is to do a 12-turn ten-plan and that way when the morning aircraft come back and plan to fly the afternoon go, you're not already out of airplanes because you've already broken a couple airplanes from the first go. Theoretically if all 12 airplanes came down code one good to go, then you basically now have five spares to use in the afternoon go.

    But if you needed to repair two or three in a 12-front, then you probably would’ve spared those out and so you may be down to the point where you can’t even turn, say put an afternoon go of ten airplanes, so you want to try to schedule to be successful, not to fail.

    And so bottom line is four air-to-air lines, eight air-to-ground lines, and then spares divided equally. Chances are you’re going to have either two or depending on the air-to-ground configurations, you might have three or even four different configurations based on the training requirements for that day’s missions.

    It becomes a very difficult challenge to schedule and move jets around in order to accommodate the training requirements for the individual pilots that are flying that day, and that’s the goal is to meet the training requirement for the pilots. In a wartime situation, this becomes even more critical.

    With F-35 on the ramp, this changes. Because you have a standard configuration for all of your 24 aircraft on the ramp, and that configuration is capable of both training and deployment, it eases the maintenance burden. Let's say you have the same a.m. and p.m. schedule with a 12 front; you can deploy your 12 aircraft in the morning, and the other aircraft are available as spares for whatever mission or capabilities is desired. In the afternoon, the aircraft that deployed during the morning can be turned around and act as spares for the afternoon aircraft. If you have aircraft needing repairs, it won't affect your operational tempo as much as it did before.

    Operationally deployed, once you get in a theater and you’re ready to go, it’s a very simple task of uploading any additional ordinance that you did not carry into theater initially, you would upload that ordinance and the airplane is ready to go. You don’t have to upload anything that you airlifted in. Everything’s ready to go.

    In a nutshell, you’ve now allowed maintenance to focus much more on getting the entire flight line geared for operations rather than having a portfolio of capability that you’re maintaining.

    In a larger campaign with multiple units participating, the effects multiply; the force commander could actually focus very much on getting more ops done for his diversity of strike options rather than having less ops time because all the complexity of maintenance and operational support. The force commander would have so much more flexibility on the day-to-day schedule if you had all of your airplanes configured in one single configuration. You would be able to pull the airplanes available that are on the schedule that day and be able to insert them into any line that you wanted to.

    Quoting checksixx (Reply 37):
    So is the idea that somehow there will be some maintainer shortage because we keep the A-10 around. That's laughable.

    If you haven't been paying attention, the plan was to retire the A-10 by next fiscal year (FY2015), and have the maintainers undergo retraining for the F-35 so that they are ready for IOC in 2016. That gives a year for maintainers to be retrained and ready to go on the F-35.

    Cutting A-10 means the USAF would save $3.5 billion and free up hundreds of experienced personnel for other career fields.

    Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 38):
    So why have attack choppers which are even more vulnerable? They are more expensive and when one goes down you lose 2 crew instead of 1.

    Attack heli's have one key advantage; they can hover and provide fire from within a few feet of friendly forces on the ground. They can also fly nap of earth as well to minimize their exposure as well.

    Also, it depends on how their employed. Do something like the March 2003 raid during Iraqi Freedom, and send attack heli's deep into enemy territory without support with limited intelligence is a recipe for disaster.
     
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    kc135topboom
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Sun Nov 23, 2014 10:52 pm

    Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 8):
    Who's fixing the jets and doing the depot overhauls? Very likely active force USAF technicians.
    Quoting Ozair (Reply 10):
    Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 5):IIRC there are just 6 squadrons of USAF active duty A-10s.
    Does the USAF have six active A-10 squadrons though? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of...tates_Air_Force_aircraft_squadrons

    This list 8 active duty A-10 squadrons:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of...States_Air_Force_fighter_squadrons
     
    sovietjet
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Mon Nov 24, 2014 5:03 pm

    Does it really matter if they are active duty or not? What does active duty do that ANG does not? It's all USAF in the end and the military is paying for these planes to fly whether they are active duty, ANG or reserve. The bottom line is there are A-10s and if they need to fight they will. Here they are:

    354 FS, 357 FS and 47 FS at Davis-Monthan
    74 FS and 75 FS at Moody
    163 FS at Fort Wayne
    190 FS at Boise
    303 FS at Whiteman
    25 FS at Osan
    104 FS at Martin State
    107 FS at Selfridge
    66 WPS / 422 TES at Nellis

    From what I can gather that is 292 aircraft operated by 13 squadrons (11 are A-10 only, the two at Nellis operate the A-10 alongside other types) any way you look at it.
     
    checksixx
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Tue Nov 25, 2014 6:00 am

    Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 39):
    Quoting checksixx (Reply 37):
    So is the idea that somehow there will be some maintainer shortage because we keep the A-10 around. That's laughable.

    If you haven't been paying attention, the plan was to retire the A-10 by next fiscal year (FY2015), and have the maintainers undergo retraining for the F-35 so that they are ready for IOC in 2016. That gives a year for maintainers to be retrained and ready to go on the F-35.

    Cutting A-10 means the USAF would save $3.5 billion and free up hundreds of experienced personnel for other career fields.

    I've been paying attention...which is why I've made factual informed comments. There will not be an issue with maintainers as I correctly stated.
     
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    seahawk
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Tue Nov 25, 2014 7:22 am

    292 A-10, that is no 292 planes with no operational value. What a waste of resources.
     
    ThePointblank
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    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Tue Nov 25, 2014 9:02 am

    Quoting seahawk (Reply 43):
    292 A-10, that is no 292 planes with no operational value. What a waste of resources.

    292 planes, with the youngest being 20 years old. These aircraft are not spring chickens.
     
    Eagleboy
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    Joined: Fri Dec 04, 2009 2:29 am

    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Wed Nov 26, 2014 12:30 am

    Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 5):
    This does not make any sense. Someone in the USAF is not being completely honest about the 1100 maintainers for IOC in 2016.

    I think this is the OP's point.....something sounds dodgy
     
    Flighty
    Posts: 9963
    Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2007 3:07 am

    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Wed Nov 26, 2014 3:25 am

    Quoting SeJoWa (Reply 16):
    The upgraded A-10C is one of the few affordable airplanes we have -

    If it makes too few men wealthy, then it will have few advocates on K street and therefore it does not serve Congress' interests.
     
    checksixx
    Posts: 1224
    Joined: Wed Mar 09, 2005 11:39 pm

    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Wed Nov 26, 2014 5:39 am

    Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 44):
    with the youngest being 20 years old

    'Some' of the base airframe is still that old, yes.
     
    ThePointblank
    Topic Author
    Posts: 3428
    Joined: Sat Jan 17, 2009 11:39 pm

    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Wed Nov 26, 2014 7:01 am

    Quoting checksixx (Reply 47):

    'Some' of the base airframe is still that old, yes.

    Much like some of the F-15's, F-16's, and F/A-18's sitting at AMARG are 20+ years old and have sections of the airframe that have been replaced...

    And they had a much more rough service life as well, as training for air to air combat does place a very heavy strain on airframes.
     
    User avatar
    seahawk
    Posts: 9627
    Joined: Fri May 27, 2005 1:29 am

    RE: F-35A IOC Delay Possible Due To A-10

    Wed Nov 26, 2014 10:48 am

    292 single role aircraft that are sitting ducks in any high threat scenario.

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