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PostPosted: Fri May 02, 2014 8:03 am 
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Thought this was a neat formation photo.

http://www.airliners.net/photo/Iran---Air/Mikoyan-Gurevich-MiG-29UB-(9-51)/2433960/L/


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PostPosted: Fri May 02, 2014 9:44 am 
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mike furline wrote:


That is indeed a good shot, and drives home the point of the spare part challenges with keeping them in the air. With french, russian and US planes in the formation shot, many with no official spare parts support since 1979 and many ex-Iraqi aircraft without paperwork in the mix, they sure have their work cut out for them. Wonder if they will be the final F-4 operator?


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PostPosted: Fri May 02, 2014 9:45 am 
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Nope. Collings will! :lol:

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PostPosted: Fri May 02, 2014 11:02 am 
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When I was going though F-14 AD-A school at NAS Miramar in 1982 all of our training aids were in Iranion .

Just saying .


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PostPosted: Fri May 02, 2014 12:41 pm 
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You mean the Navy cut up all those retired F-14s to keep the possibility of any of their parts falling into Iranian hands, yet those pesky Iranians still managed to find a way to keep the F-14s airborne? I guess the Navy is now going to have to cut up all the remaining F-14s that are in museums or gate guards. (Very obvious sarcasm is intended).

Whether the Iranians are obtaining spares through subterfuge, or have outstanding engineers and A&Ps doing great fabrication work, you do have to give them credit where credit is due...they've been able to keep at least a few of these birds flying for 35 years without any factory support.


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PostPosted: Fri May 02, 2014 1:31 pm 
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Might be just that one F-14 that's airworthy, or are there any recent pictures showing more?


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PostPosted: Fri May 02, 2014 1:57 pm 
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http://theaviationist.com/2012/01/31/russian-knights-iran/ This website says these pictures are from 2012, but it seems like I had seen them before that. The last picture shows at least two of them...

http://theaviationist.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/6.jpg

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PostPosted: Fri May 02, 2014 2:12 pm 
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Keep in mind these birds may be barely operable and the Iranians just haul them out for photo OP's. I seriously doubt they're frontline birds anymore. I'd be willing to bet they fly them now just for propaganda reasons knowing that it probably irks a lot of Americans to see them still flying.


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PostPosted: Fri May 02, 2014 2:18 pm 
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I wonder if the navy could get one for a Heritage Flight.....

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PostPosted: Fri May 02, 2014 2:23 pm 
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SaxMan wrote:
You mean the Navy cut up all those retired F-14s to keep the possibility of any of their parts falling into Iranian hands, yet those pesky Iranians still managed to find a way to keep the F-14s airborne? I guess the Navy is now going to have to cut up all the remaining F-14s that are in museums or gate guards. (Very obvious sarcasm is intended).


I hear ya. I grew up under Miramar's flight path in the 70's and loved watching the F-14's, F-4's, A-4's, A-7's and etc running the pattern. I was sad to see the F-14's retired. But unfortunately there have been people selling aircraft and parts to banned countries all in the name of making a buck. So I can't blame the guv too much for demilling all the F-14's although it makes me sad.

Here's some MD helicopters in North Korea. All in the name of making a buck.

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Last edited by maxum96 on Sat May 03, 2014 1:01 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Fri May 02, 2014 6:54 pm 
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I remember reading recently that quite a few have been flying. They have reportedly re engineered quite a bit including the AIM-54. If they can build their own nuclear program they can probably reverse engineer and maintain 1970s tech.

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PostPosted: Sat May 03, 2014 3:40 am 
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The mass scrapping of F-14's in the US hardly led to anything. It might have made it a little bit harder for them to get parts, but there isn't a thing they could get from the US, that they didn't already reverse-engineer. And they are hardly a threat to any of us, being 1970's technology and all.
Shame really, without the F-14 witch-hunt, we might have had a chance of one flying as a civilian warbird. Didn't Snort look at that option?

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PostPosted: Sat May 03, 2014 6:09 am 
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Matt Gunsch wrote:
I wonder if the navy could get one for a Heritage Flight.....


I kinda feel that the U.S. Navy doesn't deserve to have one for a heritage flight.
They made darn sure that all of theirs were either destroyed or rendered non airworthy.

It makes me scratch my head. The Navy does everything in its power, to stop people from acquiring aircraft, then they want operators to provide them to fly in a heritage flight. Seems quite hypocritical.

Andy


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PostPosted: Sat May 03, 2014 9:35 am 
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If the stuff ever hits the fan with Iran, I'm sure there are F/A-18 drivers who flew the Tomcat who would do very well fighting their F-14s.

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PostPosted: Sat May 03, 2014 10:55 am 
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In general I think the Navy's stand on surplus aircraft and especially WW2 era warbirds is too rigid and inclusive. I don't see why all the now surplus T-34Cs have to be completely scrapped and not offered for sale to enthusiasts. The attitude toward WW2 era wreck recovery is pitiful. We might have a restored TBD Devastator by now if they were more reasonable not to mention several more flying F4Fs and Dauntless'.

But when it comes to more recent designs I can see their point. The maintenance man hour per flight hour for the F-14 was reaching unsustainable levels and would have made the aircraft more dangerous for the crews. However the Tomcat overall still has the necessary raw performance to compete especially in non stealthy environments so why allow our enemies the opportunity to acquire spare parts no matter how remote? As for warbird operations there are never going to be more than one or two organizations at most that could maintain a Tomcat and imagine the fall out if one crashed during a show. Even museum examples are going to be relatively few because few organizations are going to have the capability to maintain even static examples. There were what, several hundred Tomcats, enough for every state in the Union to have 5 or more. Where would you put them all? In ten years who would care that they were rotting away? That is exactly what happened to hundreds of WW2 era aircraft 60 years ago.

The practical answer would have been to strip out the swing wing mechanism (which is virtually indestructible) and build new Tomcats around them for a fraction of the price of the F-35.

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