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knarthex

The plane we loved to see over us in 1984-1986

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When I was active duty army, as a M1 Abrams crewman from 1984 to 1988, we always loved to see these ugly biotches flying over us, as it would have meant SERIOUS bad news for the Warsaw Pact troops....

 

Tom Clancy, in his novel 'Red Storm Rising' claimed that the Pact troops called it the 'Devil's Cross' due to it's profile on attack runs....

It also appears in his novel 'Hunt for Red October'....

Where it 'acted'  as an anti shipping aircraft....

 

Battle of the Bismark Sea, WWII...

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BRRRRRRRRRRRP.

 

If you want some reading about the A-10, I think you could do worse than A-10s over Kosovo. A collection of everything from an overall A-10 squadron commander's eye view down to individual pilot anecdotes.

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A couple of squadrons of these used to be based at Lakenheath in England. I have a sister who lives near there. It's very flat open countryside. When I used to drive over to see her I would frequently see these practising low-level manoeuvres. Once one of them was a bit naughty and did a dummy run over my car... I've never felt so naked in my life! 

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This is an awesome plane, basically a flying tank with a lot of firepower.

 

One drawback though..friendly fire is a very serious risk when this thing starts strafing.

Accidents have happened.

 

Still when pointed in the right direction it is a very effective weapon.

 

 

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A 1/72 scale A-10 model was the first model I put together, way back in the early '80s.  It's not my favorite plane (that honor belongs to the Tomcat), but it comes very close. 

 

For those who don't know, since the plane was designed to attack tanks and other things on the ground, the designers knew it would attract a lot of enemy fire.  So the pilot effectively sits in a "bathtub" or titanium armor.  And that big gun under the nose?  It's offset from the centerline - the 3 o'clock position fires, and that position is on the centerline, because the force of that beast firing needed to be distributed straight back or the plane would pull to one side.  It's a Big Gun^TM.

 

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I got to climb around on one of these and see it doing strafing and a napalm run at an airshow about 10 years ago. Loved it. 

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While I'm more of a rotary wing guy (especially the Longbow Apache, since we never really did have any attack choppers here in Canada), I always did have a special place in my heart for the A10.... 

 

 

 

.... Although Voodoo2's will still be higher in my heart because every gate guard Voodoo2 in Canada is one my dad worked.  Every. Last. One.  Sadly, he never got the joy of twisting wrenches on that many of the CF-18's since he was swapped to TacHel when I was six years old.  There were still eight Canadian fighter squadrons back then too... 

Edited by WhiteWulfe
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I was lucky enough to get to see the 188th do a live fire demonstration at Razorback range. Really, really amazing. 

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7 hours ago, Loim said:

I was lucky enough to get to see the 188th do a live fire demonstration at Razorback range. Really, really amazing. 

Sounds like King Kong farting don't it?

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On 3/23/2018 at 5:22 PM, knarthex said:

Sounds like King Kong farting don't it?

I've had the opportunity to fire the M163 Vulcan Air Defense System, which has a similar rate of fire and yeah.. that's about what it sounds like..

 

image.png.c33f5a36df5beb854950616eb4b975b3.png

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Can confirm. Anything approaching 100rounds/second will sound like a rather bad fart.

(Range duty for F-16 live-fire exercise.)

The reason they fire so many rounds?  Most can't hit the broad side of a barn... 

(Maybe the A-10 pilots are better at hitting things since they fly a bit slower)

 

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45 minutes ago, Gadgetman! said:

Can confirm. Anything approaching 100rounds/second will sound like a rather bad fart.

(Range duty for F-16 live-fire exercise.)

The reason they fire so many rounds?  Most can't hit the broad side of a barn... 

(Maybe the A-10 pilots are better at hitting things since they fly a bit slower)

 

 

 

Who needs to hit the broad side of a barn when you can hit the entire soccer/football field at once? :p

 

I suspect the reason they aren't as accurate is because they're designed to hit a target that's moving as fast as you are, and ones that are just as agile. 

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14 minutes ago, WhiteWulfe said:

I suspect the reason they aren't as accurate is because they're designed to hit a target that's moving as fast as you are, and ones that are just as agile. 

I'd say that's true of F-16s and other fast attack aircraft with fast guns..

 

However, A-10's are ground attack aircraft; they put out so many rounds because that way they don't have to target individual soldiers in the open.. instead they just target the 'open'.

 

 

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Frankly, I think it's the 'active stability' of the F-16. That 80s CPU working overtime to try to adjust the control surfaces, and suddenly you add a slightly off-center recoil, and even a gyroscopic force(the ammo drum is aligned parallell to the the plane's axis, and yeah, when it starts cycling a full drum, it will add up. And they don't eject spent casings, either. )

 

I think it was the intel 8085 that was used as main CPU?   

I never liked that one. They sacrificed pins and speed to add an onboard serial port. 

(The Z80 CPU though, was 20% faster from the get go, because it didn't have to waste an extra clock cycle during the 'instruction fetch' phase. It also has a fantastic interrupt system that is way more flexible, and can do task switching much, much faster. )

 

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