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Max Q
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Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Tue May 12, 2020 6:15 am

Apropos of nothing in particular I was thinking about the extraordinary aircraft this company has produced


Machines that were and are an epic step forward in aviation and no other aerospace firm has come close to


Off the top of my head and not a comprehensive list :


P38

Constellation

Electra

U2

SR71

F104

L1011

C5

C141

F22

F35


Of all the companies involved manufacturing civil and military aircraft I don’t think anyone has come close to developing and building such an immense portfolio of incredible, revolutionary aircraft
The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.


GGg
 
VSMUT
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Tue May 12, 2020 10:06 am

I'd say they are a distinctly mediocre manufacturer with a bloated PR department.

Max Q wrote:
P38


The aircraft that barely produced any aces, had aerodynamic issues and relatively poor engines?

Max Q wrote:
Constellation


Lots of issues here too. Got handily beaten by its Douglas competitors too.

Max Q wrote:
Electra


Barely any sales.

Max Q wrote:
F104


You must be joking. The widows of all the dead pilots certainly aren't.


Max Q wrote:
L1011


Fair enough, this one counts.


Max Q wrote:
C5


Was notoriously unreliable.


Max Q wrote:
C141


Was notorious for cracking apart.


Max Q wrote:
F22


Great aircraft, way over budget, way underperforming in sales.


Max Q wrote:
F35


How many decades late and trillions over budget was it again? Not to mention an almost record number of crashes for a fighter of this era.


Max Q wrote:
Of all the companies involved manufacturing civil and military aircraft I don’t think anyone has come close to developing and building such an immense portfolio of incredible, revolutionary aircraft


I could think of a few. Lockheed Martin definitely isn't close to the top of that list.
 
mmo
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Tue May 12, 2020 10:27 am

While I disagree completely with VSMUT's assessment, I am not quite sure I agree with the OP's comments either. Lockheed itself was a company without direction. Good intentions but short on delivery. However, the Skunk Works was a phenomenal organization that was an asset to Lockheed. Aircraft such as the P-38, while not as glamorous as the P-51 was a great aircraft. It did have some issues, such as compressibility in a dive which were resolved. It did have the legs to allow it to operate effectively in the SW Pacific. It was also responsible for Yamamoto's demise. The P-80 given the design constraints and timeline was an effective aircraft for it's time. However, those were all done under the supervision of Kelly Johnson. The U-2, SR-71 were notable aircraft and the U-2 is still in use today. Again, under Kelly Johnson/Skunk Works. The F-117 was another aircraft designed by the Skunk Works which was a leader in technology.
I think if you look at the Skunk Works you get a different view of Lockheed vs just looking at Lockheed as a company.
If we weren't all crazy we'd all go insane!
 
iRISH251
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Tue May 12, 2020 11:27 am

I would add the C-130 (no explanation needed) and give an honourable mention to the T-33 which, while not revolutionary, was very widely used and served for four decades or more.
 
GalaxyFlyer
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Tue May 12, 2020 1:42 pm

C-5 unreliability was mostly a question of lack of spares and turnover of skilled maintenance troops. The Reserves finally got the A’s working well. I went several years without a delayed mission. I took one to the Boneyard with a clean 781.
 
JayinKitsap
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Tue May 12, 2020 2:01 pm

Lockheed Martin Space Systems has been the builder of the Polaris, Poseidon, Trident C4, and Trident D5 missiles. Quite an amazing product, lots of innovation involved but within a company with bloated management. Their specs for slope and cross grade for the haul roads is just crazy. The transporter looks like it has a dozen 737 nose gear for its wheels (all steerable) that could go thru any terrain park no problem, but LM claims serious overturning issues on a 2% cross slope (standard crown in a roadway). The money spent fixing the roads to their standard was incredible.

Trivia question of the day - what material is used for the nose cones on the missile.
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The nose cone is made from Balsam Spruce from Finland, about 1/4" thick. Loading the missiles is done by a bayonet mount to the top of the cone, all 65 tons is hung thru this plywood cone, the grain actually lifts under the load.
 
PresRDC
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Tue May 12, 2020 4:00 pm

This is very focused on Lockheed Martin Aero. Lockheed Martin Rotary and Mission Systems produces the Black Hawk, Seahawk, S-92 and S-76 helicopters.
 
AvgWhiteGuy
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Tue May 12, 2020 5:38 pm

Lockheed, specifically their Skunk Works division, built what I consider the 8th Wonder of the World - and maybe the first of those eight: The SR-71. I can't elaborate because I don't know
the words to convey what it did, when it did it, how it was built, and how incredibly futuristic, menacing, and yet beautiful it is.

That being said, I do regard Lockheed as unique, but other than their Skunk Works division, mostly on par with their peers.

One of my favorite quotes about the SR-71 came from a documentary, that I've since lost, that had the British commentator saying, "And if that doesn't look like Darth Vader's personal runabout, I don't know what does." Does anyone have a link to that?

Rick
 
Dmoney
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Tue May 12, 2020 10:31 pm

I mean it's largely a function of budgets and contracts. Yes they built some good planes but they had the budgets and contracts to do so. The number of firms with those resources was vanishingly small. The US after WW2 was a huge chunk of global output and it's companies so dominated global markets they had gobs of cash to throw into development. The US aviation market in the 50s and 60 was probably equal to the rest of the world. US companies were building for an enormous domestic market while everyone else had tiny domestic markets.

Which is not to say American companies weren't impressive but more I find it more interesting when small companies do I incredible things with tiny resources. Like US in the early 20th or Japanese firms in the 60s and 70s.
 
strfyr51
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Tue May 12, 2020 10:44 pm

I defy anyone to name a better and mlore innovative compane than Lockheed Martin is today. The Skunkworks has done more by accident than most have done On Purpose. The C-5, the C141 and the C130 are all superb purpose Built airplanes the U2 and SR-71? Are superb in their OWN right and Unmatched in what they do, and if you think NOT? Then show me the airplane that equals or Exceeds their performance! What Lock-Mart has built and Retired? Other MFG are still trying to Grasp!
 
TangoandCash
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Tue May 12, 2020 11:58 pm

Lockheed (and especially the Skunk Works) put out some amazing aircraft in the 50s and 60s. But Lockheed has become essentially an arm of the US government with a similar lack of concern for cost and schedule. Exhibit A: the F-35, a LockheedMartin jobs creation program if there ever was one.
 
Max Q
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Wed May 13, 2020 6:54 am

Don’t think you can blame Lockheed for the F35


It’s design requirements to be all things for three different branches of the military made a hopelessly compromised design inevitable


LM made the best possible aircraft out of an impossible requirement
The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.


GGg
 
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Starlionblue
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Wed May 13, 2020 7:17 am

Max Q wrote:
Don’t think you can blame Lockheed for the F35


It’s design requirements to be all things for three different branches of the military made a hopelessly compromised design inevitable


LM made the best possible aircraft out of an impossible requirement



Agreed. And against all odds, it seems to have turned out to be pretty darned capable. Took a fair chunk of money to make that happen, mind you.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
889091
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Wed May 13, 2020 8:19 am

Max Q wrote:

It’s design requirements to be all things for three different branches of the military made a hopelessly compromised design inevitable



I'd always thought the USN had a long standing tradition of ordering twin engined jets for carrier ops, no? The last carrier based, single engined bird in service with the USN that I can think of is the A4.
 
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Starlionblue
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Wed May 13, 2020 8:25 am

889091 wrote:
Max Q wrote:

It’s design requirements to be all things for three different branches of the military made a hopelessly compromised design inevitable



I'd always thought the USN had a long standing tradition of ordering twin engined jets for carrier ops, no? The last carrier based, single engined bird in service with the USN that I can think of is the A4.


I think they were "strongly encouraged" to let that one go in this case. ;)

In contrast, the Marines have had the single-engined Harrier for a quite a while.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
Okie
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Wed May 13, 2020 12:23 pm

Years ago I had a Tech that was retired AF.
His comment on several occasions was "you go to Lockheed for innovation and Boeing for airplanes"

Okie
 
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LyleLanley
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Wed May 13, 2020 2:50 pm

889091 wrote:
I'd always thought the USN had a long standing tradition of ordering twin engined jets for carrier ops, no? The last carrier based, single engined bird in service with the USN that I can think of is the A4.


The A-7 as well.

The Navy once operated many types of single engine aircraft at the boat. The irony being as jets became far more reliable and powerful they developed this ‘must have two engines’ compulsion.
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GalaxyFlyer
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Wed May 13, 2020 2:52 pm

We used to say, “Lockheed would build radios if they worked on hydraulics”. A lot of the C-5 problems were related to trying to reduce weight. Lightweight wiring eventually deteriorated, swedged hydraulic fittings leaking. The battery was ridiculously small to save weight, so various accumulators were “dual used”, APU start accumulators used emergency rotate the gear to forward alignment.
 
744SPX
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Wed May 13, 2020 11:47 pm

I'd be curious to know how much of the F-35 is General Dynamics...
 
steman
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Thu May 14, 2020 11:32 am

PresRDC wrote:
This is very focused on Lockheed Martin Aero. Lockheed Martin Rotary and Mission Systems produces the Black Hawk, Seahawk, S-92 and S-76 helicopters.


That´s Sykorsky and it really has nothing to do with Lockheed other than the latter bought it few years ago.
All those designs predates the takeover
 
PresRDC
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Fri May 15, 2020 4:27 pm

steman wrote:
PresRDC wrote:
This is very focused on Lockheed Martin Aero. Lockheed Martin Rotary and Mission Systems produces the Black Hawk, Seahawk, S-92 and S-76 helicopters.


That´s Sykorsky and it really has nothing to do with Lockheed other than the latter bought it few years ago.
All those designs predates the takeover


It's actually Sikorsky, thank you very much. And once LM bought Sikorsky, the Sikorsky designs became LM designs. They bought the IP as part of the acquisition.

W/r/t the Seahawk, while the airframe is a Sikorsky design, the electronic warfare systems are legacy LM.
 
BravoOne
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Fri May 15, 2020 5:31 pm

Max Q wrote:
Apropos of nothing in particular I was thinking about the extraordinary aircraft this company has produced


Machines that were and are an epic step forward in aviation and no other aerospace firm has come close to


Off the top of my head and not a comprehensive list :


P38

Constellation

Electra

U2

SR71

F104

L1011

C5

C141

F22

F35


Of all the companies involved manufacturing civil and military aircraft I don’t think anyone has come close to developing and building such an immense portfolio of incredible, revolutionary aircraft



You left off the JetStar which during it's day was pretty nice airplane. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lockheed_JetStar
Last edited by BravoOne on Fri May 15, 2020 5:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
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zeke
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Fri May 15, 2020 5:31 pm

VSMUT wrote:
Max Q wrote:
Electra


Barely any sales.


I think with over 700 P-3s built and what must be over 50 years of service, I think the Electra was very successful.
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DFW17L
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Fri May 15, 2020 7:55 pm

BravoOne wrote:
Max Q wrote:
Apropos of nothing in particular I was thinking about the extraordinary aircraft this company has produced


Machines that were and are an epic step forward in aviation and no other aerospace firm has come close to


Off the top of my head and not a comprehensive list :


P38

Constellation

Electra

U2

SR71

F104

L1011

C5

C141

F22

F35


Of all the companies involved manufacturing civil and military aircraft I don’t think anyone has come close to developing and building such an immense portfolio of incredible, revolutionary aircraft



You left off the JetStar which during it's day was pretty nice airplane. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lockheed_JetStar


Great looking plane, the JetStar. Isn’t that the plane where Auric Goldfinger used the emergency window exit?

Image
 
BravoOne
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Fri May 15, 2020 8:35 pm

DFW17L wrote:
BravoOne wrote:
Max Q wrote:
Apropos of nothing in particular I was thinking about the extraordinary aircraft this company has produced


Machines that were and are an epic step forward in aviation and no other aerospace firm has come close to


Off the top of my head and not a comprehensive list :


P38

Constellation

Electra

U2

SR71

F104

L1011

C5

C141

F22

F35


Of all the companies involved manufacturing civil and military aircraft I don’t think anyone has come close to developing and building such an immense portfolio of incredible, revolutionary aircraft



You left off the JetStar which during it's day was pretty nice airplane. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lockheed_JetStar


Great looking plane, the JetStar. Isn’t that the plane where Auric Goldfinger used the emergency window exit?

Image
Y

Yes, but that was Hollywood or where ever the movie was made.
 
VSMUT
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Fri May 15, 2020 8:36 pm

zeke wrote:
VSMUT wrote:
Max Q wrote:
Electra


Barely any sales.


I think with over 700 P-3s built and what must be over 50 years of service, I think the Electra was very successful.


So you are saying that Lockheeds "success" is built on government subsidies?
 
GalaxyFlyer
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Fri May 15, 2020 9:26 pm

Pretty much....
 
ELBOB
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Sat May 16, 2020 9:18 am

PresRDC wrote:
steman wrote:

W/r/t the Seahawk, while the airframe is a Sikorsky design, the electronic warfare systems are legacy LM.


IBM Federal Systems was the mission systems integrator for LAMPS III...


Lockheed's historic aircraft portfolio is an three-waymix of civilian ( trend-setting, well-designed but usually over-complicated ); Skunk Works ( revolutionary ) and run-of-the-mill military ( F-80, C-5 / 141, S-3 ). I'd even lump the C-130 into the latter category; it's barely competent for most jobs that it does but like the DC-3, good enough is just enough. The F-22 and F-35 can't really
be considered 'their's as they were joint projects.

A lot of their expansion and customer base was built on bribes and kickbacks in the 1960s and 70s.

Nowadays they're just another enormous machine for converting tax dollars into hardware at a glacial pace.
 
steman
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Sat May 16, 2020 9:35 am

PresRDC wrote:
steman wrote:
PresRDC wrote:
This is very focused on Lockheed Martin Aero. Lockheed Martin Rotary and Mission Systems produces the Black Hawk, Seahawk, S-92 and S-76 helicopters.


That´s Sykorsky and it really has nothing to do with Lockheed other than the latter bought it few years ago.
All those designs predates the takeover


It's actually Sikorsky, thank you very much. And once LM bought Sikorsky, the Sikorsky designs became LM designs. They bought the IP as part of the acquisition.

W/r/t the Seahawk, while the airframe is a Sikorsky design, the electronic warfare systems are legacy LM.


Nobody in their right mind would consider the Black Hawk, Seahawk, S-92 or S-76 as Lockheed designs. Not yet at least. In the future, if those models will still be built than it may be normal to think of them as Lockheed designs, just like the F-16 now or, in the case of Boeing and MDD, the F-15, F-18 and C-17. Moreover, isn´t the brand Sikorsky still alive? Or are those helos marketed as Lockheed-Martin?
 
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WesternDC6B
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Sat May 16, 2020 11:54 am

Lockheed couldn’t exist without the taxpayer’s dime. Do they make anything that ISN’T bought with tax money? At least Boeing and Airbus (and Textron and Embraer and Mitshbishi and...) make things people have a choice about buying.
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WesternDC6B
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Sat May 16, 2020 11:58 am

“[the P38] was also responsible for Yamamoto's demise. “

The pilot flying it was.
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slcguy
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Sat May 16, 2020 2:21 pm

ELBOB wrote:
PresRDC wrote:
steman wrote:

Lockheed's historic aircraft portfolio is an three-waymix of civilian ( trend-setting, well-designed but usually over-complicated ); Skunk Works ( revolutionary ) and run-of-the-mill military ( F-80, C-5 / 141, S-3 ). I'd even lump the C-130 into the latter category; it's barely competent for most jobs that it does but like the DC-3, good enough is just enough.


I don't think you could call the C-130 barely competent. An airplane that first flew in 1954 and still in production today, 66 years later! The variety of missions this aircraft has performed beyond it's basic cargo/transport purpose is astounding. Over 2000 built with the later H and newer J models in service not only in the US military but with countries around the world in both civilian and military roles. Think there is a handful of the early A, B and E models still flying as well.
 
VSMUT
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Sat May 16, 2020 6:23 pm

slcguy wrote:
ELBOB wrote:
PresRDC wrote:


I don't think you could call the C-130 barely competent. An airplane that first flew in 1954 and still in production today, 66 years later! The variety of missions this aircraft has performed beyond it's basic cargo/transport purpose is astounding. Over 2000 built with the later H and newer J models in service not only in the US military but with countries around the world in both civilian and military roles. Think there is a handful of the early A, B and E models still flying as well.


Total numbers are quite irrelevant when talking about uniquely talented manufacturers and military aircraft. Military aircraft are more often than not selected through political lobbyism, bribery and similar non-aircraft related matters. Total numbers are always going to be way higher for the superpowers' homegrown aircraft. Face it, had the C-160 been an American product and the C-130 French, you would have been talking about how the C-160 was a massive success with 2000 sold, regardless of the aircraft's true quality.

The original C-130s were good aircraft that were ahead of their time. They were the first to really combine turboprops, ramps and a low cargo floor. The J series on the other hand, those are the embodiment of lazy, uninspired engineering and really no better than the countless warmed over 737s. Technology of the 1990s had moved so much further than a post-WWII design, as designs like the An-70 and C-17 proved. Instead, the western military's have been saddled with an aircraft that can't lift most modern military vehicles.
 
Okie
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Sat May 16, 2020 8:55 pm

VSMUT wrote:
Military aircraft are more often than not selected through political lobbyism, bribery and similar non-aircraft related matters.


I figured when they started naming each B-2 after a State from the get go. Then that would be a sure fire method to make sure funds would be available until there were at least 50 produced.

I was wrong but I still suspect the reason for name each aircraft after a state.

Okie
 
Dmoney
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Sun May 17, 2020 11:21 pm

VSMUT wrote:
slcguy wrote:
ELBOB wrote:


I don't think you could call the C-130 barely competent. An airplane that first flew in 1954 and still in production today, 66 years later! The variety of missions this aircraft has performed beyond it's basic cargo/transport purpose is astounding. Over 2000 built with the later H and newer J models in service not only in the US military but with countries around the world in both civilian and military roles. Think there is a handful of the early A, B and E models still flying as well.


Total numbers are quite irrelevant when talking about uniquely talented manufacturers and military aircraft. Military aircraft are more often than not selected through political lobbyism, bribery and similar non-aircraft related matters. Total numbers are always going to be way higher for the superpowers' homegrown aircraft. Face it, had the C-160 been an American product and the C-130 French, you would have been talking about how the C-160 was a massive success with 2000 sold, regardless of the aircraft's true quality.

The original C-130s were good aircraft that were ahead of their time. They were the first to really combine turboprops, ramps and a low cargo floor. The J series on the other hand, those are the embodiment of lazy, uninspired engineering and really no better than the countless warmed over 737s. Technology of the 1990s had moved so much further than a post-WWII design, as designs like the An-70 and C-17 proved. Instead, the western military's have been saddled with an aircraft that can't lift most modern military vehicles.



A400m has budget problems and had design issues but it's fundamentally what Western nation's other than the US needed. The ability to put a big IED proof vehicle in plane and fly it long distances in civilian aerospace and land on unimproved strips, collapsing the hub and spoke only the US military endless budget could afford. Plus you can't really fly a C-17 with a Stryker onto a dirt strip without wrecking it. Herc is too small for IED capable vehicles
 
PresRDC
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Mon May 18, 2020 4:28 pm

steman wrote:
PresRDC wrote:
steman wrote:

That´s Sykorsky and it really has nothing to do with Lockheed other than the latter bought it few years ago.
All those designs predates the takeover


It's actually Sikorsky, thank you very much. And once LM bought Sikorsky, the Sikorsky designs became LM designs. They bought the IP as part of the acquisition.

W/r/t the Seahawk, while the airframe is a Sikorsky design, the electronic warfare systems are legacy LM.


Nobody in their right mind would consider the Black Hawk, Seahawk, S-92 or S-76 as Lockheed designs. Not yet at least. In the future, if those models will still be built than it may be normal to think of them as Lockheed designs, just like the F-16 now or, in the case of Boeing and MDD, the F-15, F-18 and C-17. Moreover, isn´t the brand Sikorsky still alive? Or are those helos marketed as Lockheed-Martin?


The Sikorsky brand exists, but Sikorsky has far less autonomy under Lockheed than they did under United Technologies. And the Sikorsky product line is marketed through Lockheed. Lot's of legacy Sikorsky employees could not adapt to life under Lockheed and left or retired. Most of the Sikorsky senior management is now legacy Lockheed (on day one, Lockheed installed legacy Lockheed employees as President, CFO and General Counsel and that trend has continued since. Which is not to say that most legacy Sikorsky employees were pushed out - those that adapted have done well and several now occupy senior positions elsewhere in Lockheed.

I spent seven years at Sikorsky in total, on both sides of the acquisition. Left last year when another company made me an offer I could not refuse, even though it meant leaving aerospace.
 
steman
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Tue May 19, 2020 7:15 am

PresRDC wrote:
steman wrote:
PresRDC wrote:

It's actually Sikorsky, thank you very much. And once LM bought Sikorsky, the Sikorsky designs became LM designs. They bought the IP as part of the acquisition.

W/r/t the Seahawk, while the airframe is a Sikorsky design, the electronic warfare systems are legacy LM.


Nobody in their right mind would consider the Black Hawk, Seahawk, S-92 or S-76 as Lockheed designs. Not yet at least. In the future, if those models will still be built than it may be normal to think of them as Lockheed designs, just like the F-16 now or, in the case of Boeing and MDD, the F-15, F-18 and C-17. Moreover, isn´t the brand Sikorsky still alive? Or are those helos marketed as Lockheed-Martin?


The Sikorsky brand exists, but Sikorsky has far less autonomy under Lockheed than they did under United Technologies. And the Sikorsky product line is marketed through Lockheed. Lot's of legacy Sikorsky employees could not adapt to life under Lockheed and left or retired. Most of the Sikorsky senior management is now legacy Lockheed (on day one, Lockheed installed legacy Lockheed employees as President, CFO and General Counsel and that trend has continued since. Which is not to say that most legacy Sikorsky employees were pushed out - those that adapted have done well and several now occupy senior positions elsewhere in Lockheed.

I spent seven years at Sikorsky in total, on both sides of the acquisition. Left last year when another company made me an offer I could not refuse, even though it meant leaving aerospace.


Wow, it sounds like the MDD "takeover" of Boeing. Thank you for sharing this insider snippet.
 
snasteve
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Wed May 20, 2020 3:39 pm

The F35 has jobs in every state tied into the program someway. That’s what modern Lockheed has become, a company very adept at navigating DC politics.

While the company certainly produced some amazing aircraft, the talent behind those projects are long dead.
 
PresRDC
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Wed May 20, 2020 5:29 pm

steman wrote:
PresRDC wrote:
steman wrote:

Nobody in their right mind would consider the Black Hawk, Seahawk, S-92 or S-76 as Lockheed designs. Not yet at least. In the future, if those models will still be built than it may be normal to think of them as Lockheed designs, just like the F-16 now or, in the case of Boeing and MDD, the F-15, F-18 and C-17. Moreover, isn´t the brand Sikorsky still alive? Or are those helos marketed as Lockheed-Martin?


The Sikorsky brand exists, but Sikorsky has far less autonomy under Lockheed than they did under United Technologies. And the Sikorsky product line is marketed through Lockheed. Lot's of legacy Sikorsky employees could not adapt to life under Lockheed and left or retired. Most of the Sikorsky senior management is now legacy Lockheed (on day one, Lockheed installed legacy Lockheed employees as President, CFO and General Counsel and that trend has continued since. Which is not to say that most legacy Sikorsky employees were pushed out - those that adapted have done well and several now occupy senior positions elsewhere in Lockheed.

I spent seven years at Sikorsky in total, on both sides of the acquisition. Left last year when another company made me an offer I could not refuse, even though it meant leaving aerospace.


Wow, it sounds like the MDD "takeover" of Boeing. Thank you for sharing this insider snippet.


My pleasure. I was a great place to work, both before and after the acquisition, but the two cultures were quite different. Case in point. When we were part of UTC (now RTC), we traveled lean - 2-3 people at most even for a large deal. As part of Lockheed, that number swelled to 10-12, mostly people from different levels of management. We'd have our Sikorsky team, and then people from our division (RMS) and, on occasion, someone from Lockheed International. Nothing wrong with that per se, but we never quite got used to all the extra "help" we got post merger. In the first year post-acquisition, I had more interaction with people in the corporate office than I had in the previous ten years at UTC (I made an internal transfer from Pratt & Whitney to Sikorsky).
 
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Faro
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Thu May 21, 2020 3:54 am

L1011 also set a record or two in terms of greatest corporate losses I believe...

Besides the ugly Tanaka corruption scandal in Japan and the Starfighter corruption scandals elsewhere...

And besides almost bankrupting Rolls Royce via the RB211 development...

Definitely a talented company yes...but also definitely over-hyped via the Skunk Works legacy...the F-35 development highlighted their management weaknesses...


Faro
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Re: Lockheed, uniquely talented company

Fri May 22, 2020 5:30 am

Faro wrote:
L1011 also set a record or two in terms of greatest corporate losses I believe...

...

And besides almost bankrupting Rolls Royce via the RB211 development...

Yes, Lockheed should really apologize to RR.
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