Skip to comments.F-35 looking more like white elephant
Posted on 01/13/2011 11:28:42 AM PST by too_cool_for_skool
WASHINGTON (AFP) The F-35 fighter jet, set to replace a large part of the US warplane fleet, has become the most expensive weapons program ever, drawing increased scrutiny at a time of tight public finances.
Following a series of cost overruns and delays, the program is now expected to cost a whopping 382 billion dollars, for 2,443 aircraft.
Defense officials say the original cost estimates have now doubled to make each plane's price tag reach some 92 million dollars.
At the same time, the contract awarded in 2001 had been planned to last 10 years, but has been extended to 2016 because of testing and design issues.
Private analysts say the whole F-35 program is becoming a money pit.
"The incredibly unfortunate phrase 'too big to fail' applies to this aircraft more than any other defense program," said Richard Aboulafia, an aerospace industry analyst with the Teal Group.
Kelly Johnson is spinning in his grave.
Unlike the welfare bums who took more money???
“Lockheed Martin playing the American taxpayer like a fiddle. Business as usual.”
I don’t know how to assess this. You could find a million articles about the Bradley that read exactly like this. They turned out to be (1) liberal attempts to hurt defense or (2) political crap within the DoD. The Bradley has been a magnificent vehicle for the armed forces.
Why should I give all the F-35 articles any more credence than the Bradley articles were entitled to?
I would bet anything that part of the cost overruns and delays is caused by requirements to make the fighter jets “green”.
When they cut the F-22 program last year and I objected, what did I tell folks here?
Folks fell all over themselves to assure me the F-22 was a terrible aircraft and we just had to stop the program. The F-35 could handle everything, and besides it was cheaper.
I predicted that as soon as the F-22 program was destroyed, the F-35 would be next.
Here we are folks. We’re about ten years from our air force not having a fleet of state of the art fighters.
Welcome to exactly what I predicted.
One by one, disarming America's Armed Forces. Considering our current national "leaders" think America is a grossly arrogant bully, this comes as no surprise. We are at the 2-year point of 0bama's occupation of the White House. Six more years of him and our military will barely rival that of Liechtenstein.
Has the government changed any of the design or performance requirements since the original award?
Try that with your building contractor and see if the price doesn’t go up and completion schedule get delayed!
Exactly right IMO.
If they decided to build 75 more F-22s the unit cost would be $70 million.....would we not be better off doing that?
Hey ! You can pick up a flown-only-once J20 at Wal-Mart for only $999.95 (6,600 yuan),cash and taxi [ caution: product may contain lead or hormones from cows]
“I dont know how to assess this. You could find a million articles about the Bradley that read exactly like this.”
I remember the Bradley articles as well. I was a tanker; but, I got to play around on a Bradley a little. I also spent alot of time on the piece of equipment it was meant to replace - the M113.
Bradley - Fast, fires a missile, has a moving turret, powerful gun, and advanced fire control system.
M113 - Slow, giant box, and you can mount a machine gun to it.
I remember being shocked at how good a vehicle the Bradley was, after growing up and seeing countless bad stories about it.
Another piece of equipment I remember getting bad press was the kevlar helmet. 60 minutes did an almost sarcastic piece about it, and how wasteful it was to develop it. I can’t begin to explain how big an improvement it was over the ‘steel pot’....both in comfort and safety.
And my favorite - the M1 tank. The media whined about its cost of course. But, they also were fixated on its range (100 miles..ish). They went on and on and on about this. They never mentioned some of the amazing features that made it without a doubt the best tank in the world at the time, and most likely it still holds that title, although some will argue with me.
I know nothing about this airplane; but, I have a healthy (yet civil of course) skepticism about this article.
“Same exact thing with the B-1B. It is THE aircraft that has really carried the weight in Afghanistan for the last 10 years, a gift to all of us from Ronald Reagan.”
Didn’t Carter hold up the AWACS? Another aircraft that is now indespensible.
Tri-service aircraft = FAIL.
F-111 (McNamara’s switchblade) Navy gave up and built the F-14.
What will cut next? the Osprey?
Back when I was a field service engineer I used to try to carry as few heavy tools as possible.
For this reason I had a pair of pliers that would do several jobs, but it didn’t do any of them well.
Unfortunately our procurement of fighter aircraft follows the same logic as my pliers. We make one aircraft, with modifications, that fills the needs of all of the branches of the military, but it doesn’t do it very well.
We should go back to having aircraft with designated roles, interceptor, fighter-bomber, close air support, etc.
These daredevils pick toys over boots every time. We're running out of boots and the ones left are doing triple duty, not to mention having to deal with the mountain of regulations, and paperwork, power points, and useless classwork. Time for the former pilots in those brand new glass building learn what they have been doing to the rest of the force.
“I done seen ‘bout ev’rything
“When I see an elephant fly!”
If this program had been stopped per pukin’s early info we would hopefully have continued production of the F-22 Raptor. These do all aircraft have a lousy history of cost over-runs and limited efficiency.
I think the real problem comes down to one simple thing.
They tried to pack way too many roles into a single design which creates serious compromises on performance.