Post by planecrazy on May 11, 2013 11:50:41 GMT 12
The other day I was introduced to a nice chap who's name sadly has left me. As a younger fella he flew Royal Australian Navy Shyhawks, he as telling me a story about how occasionally they would have excersizes against the Royal Australian Airforce's F 111s. I though this would be a bit of a miss-match as the F 111 (Pigs) had way more speed and could just poor on the coal and high tail it! He told me of a technique where every now and then they the Hawk did get on top of a Pig!
So the F 111s would often fly low and fast to escape radar, which sometimes they didn't, the A4s would often patrol at around 20,000 ft. If the aircraft where coming head on the A4 would roll over on there back and do a huge descending half loop and if all if went well would end up around a mile behind the F 111 and make a kill. He said it didn't happen very often as a low altitude the F 111 could go to burner and just fly away. If things went well it did however sometimes happen, he also mentioned it was a lot of fun! He also mentioned nearly all the RAN pilots who flew the Skyhawks where saddened when they were sold across the ditch, he loved them!
Last Edit: May 11, 2013 11:52:55 GMT 12 by planecrazy
Post by skyhawkdon on May 11, 2013 18:35:44 GMT 12
At a deployment to RAAF Amberly we did with 2 Sqn in 1992 our CO Steve Moore showed us his HUD tape where 4 F-111s tried to get through a an A-4 CAP (these were Kahu Skyhawks). He got a good radar lock on them at 20 miles and engaged them with AIM-9Ls from the front quarter when within range. He killed 3 of the 4 himself (using radar/missile step after "firing" each AIM-9). It was a good example of how well the APG-66 radar and Sidewinder control system was integrated in the Kahu A-4 (we had the same missile as the RAAF but in a head-on engagement could also kill F-18s before they could get us with their AIM-9Ls!). He didn't pull more than 2G through the whole intercept! So yes the F-111 was an awesome aircraft but eventually technology caught up with it and speed didn't always win the day...
One other F-111 story from my time at Nowra... I was testing the radar on the flight line at Nowra one day (actually transmitting) and I locked up a target going up the coast at very high speed and altitude. Because it was heading away from me at around 600kts it had a really good Doppler return so I was able to hold the lock for a long time (up to 30 miles from memory - which was a long distance for the APG-66). After a while I started getting jammed by this "target" (shown by upside down chevrons (^) beside the target diamond on the display). The APG-66 was smart and knew when it was being jammed so it used the jammer signal to continue to "lock" the target! I held lock for ages and must have really pissed the target off, wondering where this "F-16/A-4" was that was behind them! Later when talking to our pilots they said the jamming had all the hallmarks of a F-111's ECM kit.
Last Edit: May 11, 2013 18:38:29 GMT 12 by skyhawkdon
I bet those F111 and F18 RAAF types didn't like losing to the smaller slower A4, especially with an All Black supporter in the drivers seat?!?
Was lucky enough to see the RNZAF A4s display a few times in Australia both at Nowra and at a couple of airshows, they were great! Also have a fond memory of one blasting up a valley below me while skiing at Porter Heights in Canterbury in the mid 80s. Miss the A4s they were and still are way cool little jets!
Another story I recall, I met a US Navy pilot on leave many years ago, he had flown A4s, F 18s and even F 14s off carriers. He told me the A4 was one of the best jets to bring onto a carrier due to the cockpit being forward of the wing, great for viewing down. Didn't get that view in a F 18 or F14.
It was a good example of how well the APG-66 radar and Sidewinder control system was integrated in the Kahu A-4 (we had the same missile as the RAAF but in a head-on engagement could also kill F-18s before they could get us with their AIM-9Ls!).
What was the outcome when the F-18s could use their AIM-7s?
Any thoughts on how open ADF - NZDF exercises were following the ANZUS split?
Post by skyhawkdon on May 13, 2013 21:00:07 GMT 12
The AIM-7 was easily defeated by "beaming" the illuminating radar (i.e. turning 90 degrees to it) and punching out chaff to break lock. Not so the AMRAAM when the Hornets got it... likewise once they got ASRAAM to replace the AIM-9 things changed. Our problem was we never got any weapon or radar upgrades while the rest of the world kept upgrading so we were being left behind.