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Subject: Tomcat vs the Hornet
human7    1/11/2004 8:57:13 PM
Did the Navy make a quantum mistake in replacing the F-14 Tomcat with F-18 Super Hornet? -Any takers?
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gf0012-aus    Tomcat vs the Hornet   1/11/2004 9:14:00 PM
I'm one of those who think that the Tomcat was a far better solution and that instead of investing in a new plane, the Tomcat had far greater development potential left. It could travel further, carry more and could fly faster in certain parameters. The Hornet (or Bug as we call it in Australia) started life as a lightweight fighter as per the F17 cobra specs, it blew out on specs, got fat and then ended up in a MMA/MRCA role. The Tomcat could have been weaseled and still be an active puncher. But, this is all personal bias.... ;)
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Mark F    Oh no, not again   1/14/2004 3:33:14 PM
Besides the fact this has been hashed to death in every internet forum where the topic is likely to come up, isn't it also a bit late? This was topical 10 years ago. Today it is ancient history.
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Aardwolf    RE:Tomcat vs the Hornet   1/14/2004 10:12:04 PM
That question has been discussed in _NUMEROUS_ other threads on this site alone. There never should have even _been_ an F-18. Although an equivalent, lighter, land-based F-17 variant would have been a good export prospect.
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Mark F    Curious then...   1/15/2004 8:34:11 PM
...that while the heavier F/A-18 became a bonified success on the home and export markets, the F-18L (the developed land-based YF-17) never found a buyer.
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human7    RE:Tomcat vs the Hornet What Mark F does not understand...   1/17/2004 6:48:17 AM
There are constantly newcomers to this website. If a topic was debated in the past, does this mean this topic can never be debated again? Also, as for this topic being deemed ancient history, for all of us taxpayers its important for us to learn the mistakes of the past so that our politicans do not make the same mistakes again.
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Mark F    What's the point of a discussion   1/17/2004 7:00:04 AM
You already seem to have the answers. And yes, this is a very old, very, very tired subject.
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Sherwood    Rehashing a thread   1/17/2004 11:11:45 AM
I've returned to following miltary affairs, after a couple of decades absence, so I find the rehashing useful. I don't think a rehashed topic is that much of a waste of space as I notive they are much shorter than topical ones. Regards
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bwest    Sort of Rehashing a thread   1/17/2004 12:16:09 PM
Ok, then instead of rehashing an old thread, why don't we divert the current one to a related topic. How many of you feel that F-14 drivers have been sold down the river in not having an upgrade to use amraam? (I am familiar with the budgetary reasons related to the Superhornet development). Anyone feel that, especially in light of the Navy recently deciding to drop the use of AIM-54, the F-14 would be at a distinct disadvantage in any air to air conflict (relying on older sparrows) such as it would encounter with Chinese Su-27s in a defense of Taiwan?
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leoinnyc    RE:Sort of Rehashing a thread   1/17/2004 1:54:42 PM
Yes. I agree completely regarding amraam. The whole Tomcat/Hornet thing makes me frustrated and sad. The Hornet has been fine ("fine" meaning dissapointing but adequate) but the Tomcat is a fantastic plane that would have had enormous potential with better attack avionics. Now the Navy has no dedicated, convincing air superiority platform, andd will soon have two attack platforms -- the lame-ass Hornet and the F-35. The F-35 will probably be employed differently than the Hornet, to maximize its stealth and keep its high tech ass away from potshots. However, the most important thing is that the Navy has essentially ceeded the Air Superiority/OAO mission to the Air Force. This has major implications for the way we use carriers (are they just extra air bases to use after the Air Force has made sure that the skies are safe? Then what's the point?) and raises questions about the Navy's faith in, and reliance on AEGIS, etc. to defend the fleet. A much better arrangement would have been two main platforms, an upgraded Tomcat for Defensive Air Operations and CAS with PGMs a la Iraq and Afghanistan, with the F-35 for Deep Strike and Offensive Air Operations (i.e. missions where stealth is important). But it's no surprise that we are where we are -- this is what happens when you make a service so afraid that it won't get ANYTHING that it feels it has to jump at the chance just tto get SOMETHING and then of course ends up with just that: something -- the Hornet.
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Mark F    I disagree completely   1/17/2004 7:07:00 PM
In spite of the Tomcat's 20 year reign as the undisputed king on the carriers, in actual combat the Hornet has proven far more reliable, more economical, and more useful with a far greater range of capabilities than the Tomcat. Many of the percieved shortcomings of the Hornet are just that.
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