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Could the X-29 work as a mass produced light fighter?

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  • J-20
    Rank 4 Registered User
    • Jan 2018
    • 256

    Could the X-29 work as a mass produced light fighter?

    seeing as how its more or less a FSW F-20.. if entered service, would it have been a feasible light fighter/point defense aircraft?

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  • paralay
    Rank 5 Registered User
    • Aug 2005
    • 1418

    #2
    Its maximum speed is limited
    Damaged wings cannot be repaired

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    • Dr.Snufflebug
      Boggleboople snufflebug
      • Aug 2012
      • 530

      #3
      Why would anyone want an obsolete F-20 but with extra weight/complexity, no particularly elegant way to implement wing hardpoints, and some huge maintenance drawbacks/costs? For some >minor< added unladen (airshow) agility, or just the cool silhouette?

      Granted, I like cool silhouettes as much as the next guy, but let's face it - FSW works best in Japanese arcade video games.

      Those what-if scale models are still cool though.
      sigpic

      Comment

      • Vans
        Rank 5 Registered User
        • Oct 2015
        • 155

        #4
        I think if it was actually produced. It would have entered service in the late 80s.
        it would mostly appeal to countries that need something light, and its short range means useful for countries that have small areas to cover or just need something for air policing at the border.
        so then these aircraft only really need like 4 hard points. maybe 2 aams and 2 drop tanks or 4 aams.

        Since it will be close range, then the X-29s close in agility would be useful.

        I know the X-29 weighed more than the F-20, but it was still lighter than the F-16.

        I think it could have found a market in the 1980s or 90s Switzerland, Kenya, Singapore



        that said not sure if that planform is still useful for larger planes that want to fly at higher speeds and longer ranges. so I think it might only be useful for a light fighter at best.. or a trainer like what the Russians are doing

        Comment

        • Yama
          Rank 5 Registered User
          • Feb 2012
          • 636

          #5
          No. Technology demonstrator is a far cry from an operational aircraft. You have to worry about things like getting useful endurance, carrying sensors and avionics, useful service life, carrying weapons - did X-29 even have any hardpoints? You'd essentially have to redesign the whole aircraft.
          When Kestrel became Harrier, they had to redesign 90% of the aircraft, sometimes multiple times.

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          • J-20
            Rank 4 Registered User
            • Jan 2018
            • 256

            #6
            Originally posted by Yama View Post
            No. Technology demonstrator is a far cry from an operational aircraft. You have to worry about things like getting useful endurance, carrying sensors and avionics, useful service life, carrying weapons - did X-29 even have any hardpoints? You'd essentially have to redesign the whole aircraft.
            When Kestrel became Harrier, they had to redesign 90% of the aircraft, sometimes multiple times.
            well yah, Yama Yama doo!
            we were talking about if X-29 became an operational fighter. that means the transition from demonstrator to a fully developed plane. yup. zur Der our!

            I believe it had capabilities for 6 hard points. 2 fuselage tandem. and 2 on each wing.

            Comment

            • Yama
              Rank 5 Registered User
              • Feb 2012
              • 636

              #7
              Well, of course you could design an operational fighter based around the principles demonstrated by X-29, but it would be a substantial effort, similar to designing Eurofighter after EAP had flown. We are talking about service entry date of late '90s, if things go well. By then Gripen is already on the market...

              Comment

              • J-20
                Rank 4 Registered User
                • Jan 2018
                • 256

                #8
                Originally posted by Yama View Post
                Well, of course you could design an operational fighter based around the principles demonstrated by X-29, but it would be a substantial effort, similar to designing Eurofighter after EAP had flown. We are talking about service entry date of late '90s, if things go well. By then Gripen is already on the market...
                you're right although I think it wouldn't take so long as the Europeans would.. cuz you know.. Americans are faster as long as it is single service... Eurofighter had all the Euro-drama that delayed it.

                Comment

                • Yama
                  Rank 5 Registered User
                  • Feb 2012
                  • 636

                  #9
                  Well I dunno. Take F-22, demonstrator first flew in 1990, entry to service in 2005. Using same timetable for "F-29" would give is IOC date ~1999.
                  Also given that USAF was not going to order this aircraft in any case, how much market there would be for it? F-20 secured like four planes ordered after years of sales effort? Would FWS really much difference? Also it would run into same competition Gripen, Mirage 2000 etc export efforts did in the 90s/early 2000's: cheap surplus F-16's and MiG-29's flooding the market.

                  Comment

                  • J-20
                    Rank 4 Registered User
                    • Jan 2018
                    • 256

                    #10
                    yama..I agree with 99% of what you say.. but f-22 is a bit different being the first 5th gen and all.

                    Lets keep it 4th gen and Cold War era since its an early 80s baby.. and no multination or multi-service shenanigans (so no F-22s or 35s.. and no Eurofighter)

                    I wanna give it the F-16s time line. YF-16 flew 1974. in service 1978. 4 years

                    so X-29 prototype flew 1984.. service 1988. maybe that's too optimistic

                    ok lets do Gripen.. 1988, service 1996 so 8 years. but I think since its the US, they will have the will power to push through.

                    so lets just say 1988 to 1992! I think they could have stolen a few sales from Gripen and MiG-29s but you probably got a point about F-16s.

                    Comment

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