F-35s Can’t Fly 22% of the Time, Repair Facilities Six Years behind Schedule

Megalith

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The Pentagon is accelerating production of Lockheed Martin’s F-35 jet even though the planes are facing “significantly longer repair times” than planned: maintenance facilities are six years behind schedule. The time to repair a part has averaged 172 days -- “twice the program’s objective.” The shortages are “degrading readiness” because the fighter jets “were unable to fly about 22 percent of the time” from January through August for lack of needed parts.

The Pentagon has said soaring costs to develop and produce the F-35, the costliest U.S. weapons system, have been brought under control, with the price tag now projected at $406.5 billion. But the GAO report raises new doubts about the official estimate that maintaining and operating them will cost an additional $1.12 trillion over their 60-year lifetime. Already, the agency said the Defense Department must stretch its resources to meet the needs of continued system development and production.
 
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westrock2000

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This is strange. I wouldn't have expected such problems by making a universal plane that satisfies all aspects of air superiority for all 3 branches of the military. Nor would I have expected such issues from an industry dominated by 1 or 2 companies due to buyouts and mergers over the decades.

It just seems these 2 things would have fixed all the problems.
 

viper1152012

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No kidding, imagine if they had decided to make planes that were specialized and catered to branch specific designs where speed, stealth, payload and dog fighting could have been far stronger instead of a plane that tried to cram everything from everywhere into a frame with one giant fan...
Madness
 

daglesj

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And here in the UK we sold off our reliable Harriers to the US Marines and bought this crap instead.

We should have just brought out a new mark of Harrier for our new carriers.

How fast do you need to go against guys on donkeys and Nissan pick up trucks?
 

westrock2000

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And here in the UK we sold off our reliable Harriers to the US Marines and bought this crap instead.

We should have just brought out a new mark of Harrier for our new carriers.

How fast do you need to go against guys on donkeys and Nissan pick up trucks?

Wait, are they using Nissan's or Toyota Hiluxes? Cause those Hilux will require litterally a nuclear bomb to stop them, as proven by Top Gear.

3jelwqg.jpg


 

Mad Maxx

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And, the Pentagon is considering retirement for 100 of these hi-tech wonder jets before even a single one of them flew a combat mission.

http://thedailycoin.org/2017/09/28/pentagon-considering-retiring-100-f-35s-ever-fly/

China and Russia don't need to spend huge $$ on their militaries. All they should do is kick back while we bankrupt ourselves with trillions spent on ineffective equipment and our glorious war of American exceptionalism on terror.
 

DeathFromBelow

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22? Did someone say F22?

The F-22 was even worse since they basically had to redesign it as an F-15E/F-117 replacement rather than a pure interceptor. In the end they got the per-plane costs down. I'm sure they will here, too. Note how they squeeze in one sentence at the end of the article mentioning that the flyaway cost of the Air Force version has already been reduced 60%.

Sensationalism and FUD is really nasty in the aerospace world:

And, the Pentagon is considering retirement for 100 of these hi-tech wonder jets before even a single one of them flew a combat mission.

http://thedailycoin.org/2017/09/28/pentagon-considering-retiring-100-f-35s-ever-fly/

From the article:
It might be cheaper to simply take the older F-35s in need of upgrades and use them for testing or training purposes instead. The USAF is currently conducting a business case analysis to determine which option is better for the budget.
...
In the case of the F-22, three dozen fighters were retired when it came time to upgrade, with the USAF opting to use them for training instead.

Much ado about nothing. They did the same thing with the F-15, F-16, F-22, and countless other aircraft. They're going to build thousands, and they've simply argued that it might be cheaper to use those first 100 aircraft for training and testing rather than upgrading them to full combat readiness. There were only 195 F-22's ever built and they kept 3 dozen of them for testing.

When production is limited they go the other way. A B-2 bomber test aircraft was converted into a full production aircraft, for example.
 

SighTurtle

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And, the Pentagon is considering retirement for 100 of these hi-tech wonder jets before even a single one of them flew a combat mission.

http://thedailycoin.org/2017/09/28/pentagon-considering-retiring-100-f-35s-ever-fly/

China and Russia don't need to spend huge $$ on their militaries. All they should do is kick back while we bankrupt ourselves with trillions spent on ineffective equipment and our glorious war of American exceptionalism on terror.

Tbf China and Russia cant project worldwide dominance.
 

Mad Maxx

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The F-22 was even worse since they basically had to redesign it as an F-15E/F-117 replacement rather than a pure interceptor. In the end they got the per-plane costs down. I'm sure they will here, too. Note how they squeeze in one sentence at the end of the article mentioning that the flyaway cost of the Air Force version has already been reduced 60%.

Sensationalism and FUD is really nasty in the aerospace world:



From the article:


Much ado about nothing. They did the same thing with the F-15, F-16, F-22, and countless other aircraft. They're going to build thousands, and they've simply argued that it might be cheaper to use those first 100 aircraft for training and testing rather than upgrading them to full combat readiness.

When production is limited they go the other way. A B-2 bomber test aircraft was converted into a full production aircraft, for example.
Let's hope the USAF, Lockheed and everyone else involved fixes the oxygen delivery systems before building thousands of them.

Tbf China and Russia cant project worldwide dominance.
They don't need to while we overextend and exhaust ourselves with world dominance, which we haven't been very good at, anyway.
 

SighTurtle

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Let's hope the USAF, Lockheed and everyone else involved fixes the oxygen delivery systems before building thousands of them.


They don't need to while we overextend and exhaust ourselves with world dominance, which we haven't been very good at, anyway.

How are we overextended, or exhausted?

We are fine. Not perfect but we are doing fine.
 

Mchart

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This is strange. I wouldn't have expected such problems by making a universal plane that satisfies all aspects of air superiority for all 3 branches of the military. Nor would I have expected such issues from an industry dominated by 1 or 2 companies due to buyouts and mergers over the decades.

It just seems these 2 things would have fixed all the problems.

F35 isn't isn't an air superiority frame. (Even the A shred on the USAF side) It's largely for strike/CAPs / BARCAPs for a fleet.

Also while I don't like the F-35 the 22% number isn't bad when you compare it to other air frames. The C-5 for instance is 50%. Half of the time it fucking breaks.
 
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Mchart

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can we just have a new gen of f18s & more a10s please? why did lockheed even get this contract anyway?

...dont answer that. i know why.

F-18 isn't that great either on the fleet ops side. It was largely a huge downgrade in a lot of ways compared to what the F-14 could do in terms of range/payload and the S-3 Viking. The story of the F-18 isn't a whole lot different from the F-35, and the F-18 has replaced many cheaper purpose built airframes to do multiple jobs with less capability.

CSG's were generally more capable back in the 80's/90's with the F-14/S-3 dream combo they had going on.

Of course the whole concept of the CV / CSG at this point remains to be tested properly in a real war scenario as the entire CSG would be swarmed with stand-off and forced to egress or be sunk.
 

westrock2000

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F35 isn't isn't an air superiority frame. It's largely for strike/CAPs.

Also while I don't like the F-35 the 22% number isn't bad when you compare it to other air frames. The C-5 for instance is 50%. Half of the time it fucking breaks.

I guess you are going by some other technical classification. I was going by the definition, that air superiority means having very high level of control of the theater. It's not an F-22, but it is a less specialized version of the F-22. And it is equipped for air to air combat (even though that has been non-existent for the last 15 years).

air superiority — That degree of control of the air by one force that permits the conduct of its operations at a given time and place without prohibitive interference from air and missile threats.
 

Mchart

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I guess you are going by some other technical classification. I was going by the definition, that air superiority means having very high level of control of the theater. It's not an F-22, but it is a less specialized version of the F-22. And it is equipped for air to air combat (even though that has been non-existent for the last 15 years).

You're using a very loose definition there.

Yes, it'll do OCA/DCA just fine - But it's not a purpose built air superiority fighter like the F-15 and F-22 were designed for. It's more in the realm of the F-18 or even F-16. They were designed from the ground up as multi-role.
 

westrock2000

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The F-16 I think is one the most amazing success stories. The thing refuses to be retired. Such a great design. It's been in operation for 40 years and is still a modern and capable fighter (many updates along the way). And when you see one next to another modern fighter it's just so tiny. I've seen them on the Heritage flights a couple times next to other larger fighters.

visual.jpg


160305-F-LW859-013-copy.jpg
 

fightingfi

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If we the USA went to war tomorrow we'd lose.............:( I blame the whole entire govt rep dem , everyone for not caring anymore or possibly never did. Smallest Military ever since ww2 in fact our military was LARGER in ww2 then it is now 2017\18.........
 

Mchart

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If we the USA went to war tomorrow we'd lose.............:( I blame the whole entire govt rep dem , everyone for not caring anymore or possibly never did. Smallest Military ever since ww2 in face our military was LARGER in ww2 then it is now 2017\18.........

Uh, no we wouldn't. Our current capabilities haven't come anywhere close to being fully demonstrated, and that's a good thing.

And all I can do is face palm about that WW2 statement.

Just because we had more manpower during WW2 doesn't mean we are any less capable.

We can achieve a desired effect against a target using both kinetic and/or non-kinetic means with minimal loss of life/waste that would have required hundreds of B-17's carpet bombing for days with incredible loss of life on both sides back in WW2.

So yes - One B-1 bomber along with all the expensive stand off munitions it can carry may be more expensive then 500 B-17's carpet bombing for days, but it's arguably more capable in terms of actually delivering an effect then those 500 B-17's.
 
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RogueTadhg

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So yes - One B-1 bomber along with all the expensive stand off munitions it can carry may be more expensive then 500 B-17's carpet bombing for days, but it's arguably more capable in terms of actually delivering an effect then those 500 B-17's.

But would 500 B-17s look a lot more awesome?
 

westrock2000

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But would 500 B-17s look a lot more awesome?

Dude, I have long yearned to know what that would even sound like. I imagine you would hear for probably 5-10 minutes before it even go to you. 5 minutes of listening to your death. Unreal.

The sound of all that power. Thankfully we will probably never experience that....but sadly too.
 

ryuen

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The F-16 I think is one the most amazing success stories. The thing refuses to be retired. Such a great design. It's been in operation for 40 years and is still a modern and capable fighter (many updates along the way). And when you see one next to another modern fighter it's just so tiny. I've seen them on the Heritage flights a couple times next to other larger fighters.

It beat an F35 in a dogfight too. Love that old Falcon.
 

Sikkyu

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This is strange. I wouldn't have expected such problems by making a universal plane that satisfies all aspects of air superiority for all 3 branches of the military. Nor would I have expected such issues from an industry dominated by 1 or 2 companies due to buyouts and mergers over the decades.

It just seems these 2 things would have fixed all the problems.

The biggest issue is that parts for these things are made in all 50 states simply because all states demanded it be so to pass it. So if they need parts they need to wait on ridiculous supply lines.

Its the most inefficient they could have done it simply as a political move.
 

daglesj

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Reliable.....Harriers?
lol

Well sat least they are battle proven. More than this new crap will be. And they'll at least have been in service for longer then the time the F-35 took to just get flying.

Big waste of money.
 

__hollywood|meow

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F-18 isn't that great either on the fleet ops side.

id rather money go into refreshing a new gen of a fairly competent & much less expensive f18s, reactivating a10s everywhere...& honestly with the truckloads of money left over, we can get our specialized loadouts for niche roles too if it comes down to it. my point is that lockheed is full of shit & im not comfortable burning taxpayer dollars on bullshit like VTOL & questionable stealth feature gimmicks.

how many gen revisions will it take to make the f35 robust & cost effective? its literally impossible.
 

Geef

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Can't they just order 10 of them and only use 9? That way they get an entire jet worth of parts. If things get bad they can order 10 and only use 8.
 

Krenum

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If we the USA went to war tomorrow we'd lose.............:( I blame the whole entire govt rep dem , everyone for not caring anymore or possibly never did. Smallest Military ever since ww2 in fact our military was LARGER in ww2 then it is now 2017\18.........

We absolutely would not.
 

Aireoth

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If we the USA went to war tomorrow we'd lose.............:( I blame the whole entire govt rep dem , everyone for not caring anymore or possibly never did. Smallest Military ever since ww2 in fact our military was LARGER in ww2 then it is now 2017\18.........

Someone is watching to many movies.

As for The world wars, I don't think you noticed but things have changed since then, think less large set peice battles, more smaller specialized conflict.

Back to the topic at hand, this sure reminds me of star citizen!
 

Flogger23m

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And here in the UK we sold off our reliable Harriers to the US Marines and bought this crap instead.

We should have just brought out a new mark of Harrier for our new carriers.

How fast do you need to go against guys on donkeys and Nissan pick up trucks?

Has little to nothing to do with speed, but the Harriers are a POS compared to the F-35. High fatality rate, garbage payload and whatnot. Oh, and with many payload and full fuel configurations it can't even VTOL. If slow speed = king, then just bring back the Spitfire with that logic.

The main problem the UK has is their fantasy of operating fixed wing aircraft as a VTOL plane. So much so that they bought the VTOL variant for the RAF. Even more moronic when their new carrier doesn't require it.

id rather money go into refreshing a new gen of a fairly competent & much less expensive f18s, reactivating a10s everywhere...& honestly with the truckloads of money left over, we can get our specialized loadouts for niche roles too if it comes down to it. my point is that lockheed is full of shit & im not comfortable burning taxpayer dollars on bullshit like VTOL & questionable stealth feature gimmicks.

how many gen revisions will it take to make the f35 robust & cost effective? its literally impossible.

F-35s aren't much more expensive than the modernized legacy planes. Economies of scale = lower prices. Start shoving an AESA radar into a plane and the price shoots up. A Strike Eagle costs $120 million, about 33% more than an F-35 as an example. I think the UAE paid around $90 million a piece for the F-16E which puts it in line with the F-35.

Also, A-10s are out dated. If your interest is in killing guys in pickups a drone, helicopter, AC-130, and a number of other things overlap. So if your interest is purely in saving money, may as well dump the A-10 and put the money into more important things such as tankers.
 

N4CR

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A
Also, A-10s are out dated. If your interest is in killing guys in pickups a drone, helicopter, AC-130, and a number of other things overlap. So if your interest is purely in saving money, may as well dump the A-10 and put the money into more important things such as tankers.

A10 has superior loiter, payload and capabilities for ground attack. It is far from outdated, it is superior to the f35 in practically every way for ground attack, which is a majority of modern use of combat aircraft today. Fighting CIA/mossad puppets once they've done their nation destabilising job, is about all they do these days.
 

sfsuphysics

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China and Russia don't need to spend huge $$ on their militaries. All they should do is kick back while we bankrupt ourselves with trillions spent on ineffective equipment and our glorious war of American exceptionalism on terror.
That's basically how we "won" the cold war with the Soviet Union. We could out spend them, they tried, but they just went kaput.

Unfortunately we didn't fucking learn, and think throwing cash hand over fist at defense contractors is still in our best interests.
 
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