Goodbye, T-3

Discussion in 'Hangar Talk' started by Keith Lane, Sep 12, 2006.

  1. Keith Lane

    Keith Lane Pattern Altitude

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    Looks like the T-3 trainer is headed out to the recyclers.

    " The Air Force has finally decided what to do with its barely-flown fleet of 106 training airplanes: Concede that it's high-flying junk."


    http://www.time.com/time/nation/article/0,8599,1534054,00.html?cnn=yes

    Killing students woulda been bad enough, but to kill "highly trained" instructors proved the problems I guess.
     
  2. Pilawt

    Pilawt Final Approach

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    So USAF pays some $487,000 each (in Clinton-era dollars) for a fleet of foreign-built, fixed-gear airplanes with big engines, and all we get for it are some dead pilots and a pile of aluminum ashtrays.

    Meanwhile, off-the-shelf F33C Bonanzas (used as military trainers by several countries), new T-41's (Cessna 172 and R172, derided by Gen. McPeak as "your grandmother's airplane") and others, could have been had for a song by comparison.

    Even Mooney had an entry in the competition, a very attractive modification of the newer M20 series airframe with a bubble canopy. It was rejected because of a problem with spin handling with full fuel.

    McPeak himself flies an RV -- wouldn't a fleet of those make great primary trainers?

    So to the long list of airplanes that could not replace the good ol' Cessna 172, add the Slingsby T-3 Firefly.

    "Slingsby T-3 Firefly" ... sounds like something from a Marx Brothers movie.

    -- Pilawt
     
  3. Len Lanetti

    Len Lanetti Cleared for Takeoff

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    To be fair...Mooney stated that the M20 airframe would have required serious and expensive re tooling to accomodate the negative g requirements. That said, it was a very cool looking airplane.

    I never understood why they couldn't identify the problem and just fix it.

    Len
     
  4. Anthony

    Anthony Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Why we can't just buy a proven military trainer like the Marchetti SF260 is beyond my understanding. Its fully aerobatic has many U.S. components including a Lycoming engine.
     
  5. gismo

    gismo Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Because the DOD has a strong bias against OTS solutions to any problem. I suspect it's a case of the procurement folks wanting to stay within their comfort zone coupled with a perceived loss of importance on their part if their job is reduced to "shopping".
     
  6. Anthony

    Anthony Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Morons.
     
  7. Steve

    Steve En-Route

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    http://www.vansaircraft.com/public/nigerian.htm

    It's a sad sight to see at Hondo, TX. All those T-3s under the hail sheds, rotting.
     
  8. Ken Ibold

    Ken Ibold Final Approach

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    Not to mention the reduced opportunities for kickbacks.
     
  9. Henning

    Henning Ejection Handle Pulled

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    I'm not so sure they're really good for anything else.
     
  10. Pilawt

    Pilawt Final Approach

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    What an idea! We want cadets to be knowledgeable about structures and systems, right? So let 'em build their own primary trainers, which they get to keep for their own after 'x' years of service.

    Just kidding. But then ... that's better than half a mil for a Slingsby Lawn Dart.

    -- Pilawt