The RCAF's Next Generation Fighter (CF-188 Replacement)

Blackadder1916

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Back many years ago, just after the F5 came into service, I was at, I think Bagotville on my ACO course and there was an F5 siting on the hanger floor next to the engine of a Voodoo. There wasn't much of a size difference. We still had 104s in Germany as well.

That's me a few years later on my FAC course in the back seat of an F5 for my familiarization flight about to attack Gagetown. No cookies lost.

View attachment 64450

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If you're a trivia fan - looks as though you're in 813 (the two seaters were numbered 116801 to 116846).

Another view of that aircraft.

9 December 1968 - Taken on strength

Originally ordered as RCAF 14813, re-marked before completion. Delivered direct to CFB Cold Lake, Alberta. On static display at CFB Namao on Armed Forces Day, 1969. May have been first public display of type. Operated by 433e L'Escadre de Combat, CFB Bagotville, PQ., in aluminum paint, by 1974. Also operated by 434 Squadron. Received structural upgrade late 1980s. With No. 419 Squadron at Cold Lake in 1990 and 1993. In storage at Aircraft Maintenance Development Unit at CFB Trenton by February 1995. Seen in storage, inside Hanger 3 at CFD Mountain View, Ontario in October 2005. Nose section in use as recruiting aid by 2007, still in aggressor markings. Reportedly owned by Public Affairs Exhibits.
 

FJAG

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If you're a trivia fan - looks as though you're in 813 (the two seaters were numbered 116801 to 116846).

Another view of that aircraft.

Thanks for that. We groundpounding types generally never think about the history of an aircraft. While I went to Bagotville for the ACO course, this flight was actually out of Summerside. I was on the Advanced Arty course in Gagetown and the the FAC course was part of that. They flew half of us students to Summerside to fly in the jets while the other half did the FACing, then the next day we changed round.

For some years now I've been trying to remember where it was that I flew in a Tracker (I keep having these visions of being stuffed into that back seat for some time without remember where in hell I ever had that opportunity). The more I think about it the more I'm convinced that we were ferried across to Summerside, two at a time, aboard Trackers. My only other recollection of that time was leisurely sitting on a sunny hill overlooking a valley calling in a round of fire for effect while writing my wife a letter on my field message pad (this being the year I was gone from home for almost eleven months on one course after exercise after course after exercise after course)

Fun times

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CBH99

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The F-35 will be the best choice for us, for a variety of reasons - when everything works as intended, and the maintenance issues have been resolved. There are still some pretty expensive fixes that need to happen first, one of which is the engine issue. (Jet engines aren't remotely cheap)

It's been an accidental blessing we didn't purchase out 65 aircraft when the Conservatives first announced the procurement - financially & availability wise, I think we'd be in worse shape. The Hornets, as old as they may be, are still reliable sluggers -- and while we all agree they need to be replaced, I really do think it's actually been a blessing our federal government is so incompetent at procurement... let others pay for the expensive fixes before we place our orders.

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MarkOttawa

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The F-35 will be the best choice for us, for a variety of reasons - when everything works as intended, and the maintenance issues have been resolved. There are still some pretty expensive fixes that need to happen first, one of which is the engine issue. (Jet engines aren't remotely cheap)

It's been an accidental blessing we didn't purchase out 65 aircraft when the Conservatives first announced the procurement - financially & availability wise, I think we'd be in worse shape. The Hornets, as old as they may be, are still reliable sluggers -- and while we all agree they need to be replaced, I really do think it's actually been a blessing our federal government is so incompetent at procurement... let others pay for the expensive fixes before we place our orders.

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Meanwhile price looks like stalling, at least for a while:

Steady F-35 Price Reductions Likely at an End​


The next three lots of F-35 production—now being negotiated—likely won’t see much, if any, lowering of unit prices, Lockheed Martin aeronautics vice president Gregory M. Ulmer said Feb. 19.

A reduction in units being procured and an increase in capability of the aircraft will make it tough to keep the price from rising, he said.

“If you look at the next three lots, there’s going to be quite a bit of pressure, I would say, keeping the cost neutral,” Ulmer told journalists on a telecon press conference ahead of AFA’s virtual Aerospace Warfare Symposium Feb. 24-26.

There’s “a significant quantity reduction in the next three years … on the order of 100 aircraft,” he said, so there will be fewer aircraft across which to spread overhead costs.

In the Lot 12, 13, and 14 deal, announced in October 2019, there were 478 aircraft, and Lockheed’s unit price for the F-35A model fell below $80 million apiece for the first time. The Lot 12-14 contract reduced F-35 unit prices nearly 13 percent over the previous lots, and marked the sixth successive year of unit price reductions.

“We also know we’re going to put Tech Refresh 3 [upgraded software, improved core processor, new cockpit display] and new capabilities on the aircraft” in Lots 15-17, Ulmer said. Given all that, “We’re working to keep a cost-neutral position” for the next production lots.

The Joint Program Office reported in January that its contracting strategy for Lots 15-17 will be to negotiate a “base year” contract for Lot 15, with two single-year options in Lots 16 and 17.

The F-35 still has not been declared ready for full-rate production; that status has been repeatedly delayed while the Pentagon integrates the aircraft with the Joint Simulation Environment, a Pentagon wargaming system that assesses the right numbers of various platforms for various combat scenarios.

Declaring the F-35 ready for full-rate production will make it possible for a multi-year contract of five to seven years, Ulmer said, noting that partners are already taking advantage of block buy quantities to reduce risk. That arrangement would enable contractors and subs to make better deals for materials and labor, which could hold prices down, he said [emphasis added]...

Mark
Ottawa
 
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