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Subject: A-6 Intruder
Lawman    6/16/2006 4:40:38 AM
It has to be one of the finest naval aircraft ever built, but a question occurs. Whenever the warload of the A-6 is specified, it seems to be quoted as being 28 x Mk82s, yet there are plenty of pictures of them carrying 30 - presumably the weight is the reason, since wartime allows relaxation of normal limits. Any other explanations?
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Mike From Brielle    RE:A-6 Intruder   6/16/2006 1:54:33 PM
The forward portion of the landing gear doors would interfere with the 29th and 30th 500lbs bombs when they were extended. Occasionally some squadrons would remove the forward landing gear doors in order to accomidate the additional bombs.
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Lawman    RE:A-6 Intruder   6/16/2006 2:33:11 PM
Thanks, I had figured it was the simple issue of weight, I am surprised that the A-6 suffered from this sort of problem. I always felt that the Intruder was one of the finest types, and in upgraded form would make a great contribution to carrier aviation. It would even fit in with the USAF's Regional Bomber concept - an A-6 can carry half the weapons load of a B-52 (not the cruise missiles, where it is more like a quarter, but still very good).
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Mike From Brielle    RE:A-6 Intruder   6/19/2006 11:23:55 AM
It wasn’t a big deal its just that when the forward portion of the landing gear bay doors were open they swung right into where the inside Multiple Ejection Rack's (MER) would store the upper forward inside bombs (the 29th and 30th bombs). It didn't effect in any way the performance of the aircraft. The A-6E was one of the few aircraft besides the C-130 that could carry the Daisy Cutter. It had to carry two of them as a matter of fact (one on each wing) for the sack of balance.
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Lawman    RE:A-6 Intruder   6/19/2006 12:02:45 PM
Are you sure about the daisy cutter? I knew they could carry bombs with daisy cutter fuses (just a regular bomb, with a fuse set to detonate x feet off the ground), but daisy cutter in the C-130 sense is a BLU-82, which is a huge bomb. I suspect they probably used 2000lb Mk84s with daisy cutters, and may have used 3000lb M118 or BLU-96 FAE bombs, though I am not sure about those.
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Mike From Brielle    RE:A-6 Intruder   6/19/2006 2:23:45 PM
It wasn't done often as far as I know and it wasn't done far but it was done. Like I said thou you had to carry two at a time for the sake of balance.

The A-6E TRAM and the caceled A-6G should be the perfect aircraft today supporting SA type missions in the GWOT (much cheaper too). I felt the weakness of the A-6 was that it wasn't sexy and not many people understood how useful it could be above much better publicized aircraft.

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Lawman    RE:A-6 Intruder   6/19/2006 2:57:08 PM
I agree, though I would change the 'G' to an 'F' - the G was the cut-price minimal change version (to get it past congress), whereas the F was the one cancelled in favor of the A-12 (disaster that that was!). The F version was to have F404s, and would have been a great aircraft - it would actually have fitted the genuine regional bomber concept. A good combined USN/USMC/USAF purchase of A-6Fs and EA-6Cs would have given the carriers a massive striking capability. Just think about the number of SDBs you could have carried on an A-6, probably four six-weapon stores at least! I have to both agree and disagree about the aircrafts looks - I always thought it was a great looking aircraft, though many felt it was not. It would actually have been a respectable replacement for the RAAF's F-111s!
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MadRat    Daisy cutters   6/20/2006 12:48:22 AM
Using the term "Daisy Cutter" for the Blu-82 15000 lb bomb is incorrect. The correct definition for that big fella is Blu-82. Or you could call it Commando Vault. A Daisy Cutter has always been a 4 ft M1A1 Fuze Extender which is used on iron bombs of all sizes. The A-6 could carry only three big bombs in the near 2-ton range, which included the Mark 118 3,000 pounder. Your two-daisy cutter story probably involved a pair of M118's.
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Lawman    RE:Daisy cutters   6/20/2006 5:22:04 AM
I agree Madrat, as I said, in the C-130 universe, Daisy Cutter is generally interpreted as the BLU-82 (incorrectly though), it is a bit like the MP-38/40 being called the Schmeiser, despite not actually being one! As you say, the most likely candidate would be the M118 with a daisy cutter fuse - the hardpoints were only rated at around 3600 lbs, so M118s would be about the heaviest bombs possible.
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AlbanyRifles    RE:Daisy cutters   6/20/2006 8:52:52 AM
FYI, a lot of Naval Aviators outside the attack community called the A6 the Turkey Leg
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Mike From Brielle    RE:Daisy cutters   6/20/2006 5:16:00 PM
I never actualley saw the big 15000 pound daisy cutters (or whatever you want to call them) with my own eyes on the the A-6 but I have seen pictures of them mounted on an A-6. There was always scuttlebutt that if needed skypig could do it. Supposedly they were droped at least once and I don't know what the state of the wings were afterward. Maybe this goes officially into the I don't know but I've told bin;).
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