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Author Topic: General Dynamics / Grumman F-111B  (Read 29419 times)

Offline dwomby

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General Dynamics / Grumman F-111B
« on: June 08, 2007, 12:31:26 pm »
http://www.georgespangenberg.com/exhibitindex.htm

I found this while surfing for F-111B material today.

David W.

Offline Tailspin Turtle

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Re: General Dynamics / Grumman F-111B
« Reply #1 on: March 07, 2009, 07:31:20 am »
The ready acceptance and lack of scholarship and critical thinking about many things put forth on the interweb doesn’t surprise me, particularly in this case, which is attributable to the success of the Navy’s campaign to smear the F-111B.

One of the half-truths was its poor performance in carrier trials accomplished aboard Coral Sea in July 1968. In fact, few new airplanes get much better than a barely passing grade from the NATC carrier suitability test pilots, with several deficiencies usually noted. In this case, the F-111B being evaluated was actually a prototype that did not have the carrier compatibility modifications like the raised cockpit shown below that were being incorporated- along with engine thrust, control system, and wing lift improvements- on the aircraft on the production line.

According to the respective SACs, the F-111B would be 4,000 lbs heavier than the F-14 on landing (only 8%, far less than most people would guess based on the poor reputation of the "SeaPig"). However, it approached 10 knots slower which meant it was actually easier on the arresting gear than the F-14 (ashore, landing ground roll was 21% less). The F-111B also did not have as significant a directional control problem on a single-engine waveoff, since the engines were not as far from the centerline of the aircraft as they were on the F-14.

This is my best guess at the production canopy. The windshield angle was reportedly increased to 30 degrees and the pilot's eye raised by three inches. All of the lines changes were accomplished with the escape capsule.

Note: No aircraft were completed with the raised canopy. 152714 and 5 had the longer nose.

For a complete and more-balanced history on the F-111B, order my monograph on the F-111B from Ginter Books: http://www.ginterbooks.com/NAVAL/NF41.htm
« Last Edit: March 07, 2009, 01:08:17 pm by Tailspin Turtle »

Offline GTX

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Re: General Dynamics / Grumman F-111B
« Reply #2 on: March 07, 2009, 12:57:12 pm »
Very interesting information - thanks!

Regards,

Greg

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Re: General Dynamics / Grumman F-111B
« Reply #3 on: March 07, 2009, 10:43:04 pm »
For a complete and more-balanced history on the F-111B, order my monograph on the F-111B from Ginter Books: http://www.ginterbooks.com/NAVAL/NF41.htm


I've got that one, it's a damn good read on one of the easily forgotten Cold War weapons programs.

Offline Skybolt

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Re: General Dynamics / Grumman F-111B
« Reply #4 on: March 08, 2009, 06:31:54 am »
I am rank and file with TT ! The F-14 was a great F-4 substitute, BUT not the do-it-all the Navy has tried to promote. From late 50's to late 60s the Navy clamored for a patrol interceptor armed with Eagles and later Phoenixes to counter long range bombers armed with sea-skimming cruise missiles. They got it with the F-111B (they could have got it in a variety of other ways) only to turn to a dogfighter with a marginal patrol-interception capability (great radar and weapon-control, but lacking endurance with the 6 Phoenixes specified for the role), essentially because the Vietnam War lessons made them concentrate on the escort-fighter and short-to medium range air superiority fighter capability. Effectively, they chose the F-14 and pretended they got what they hadn't got with the F-111B. They even tried to make people forget that in 1962-6 the balanced carrier flight group projected for 1970-75 they specified for carrier development incuded BOTH TFX AND Phantoms...

Offline flateric

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Re: General Dynamics / Grumman F-111B
« Reply #5 on: March 08, 2009, 08:45:42 am »
Well, actually, this is only book that has anything on F-111B that lasts more than one page and two photos)
TT, I wonder, if you ever came across of good F-111B general arrangement drawings?
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stealth, more than a few of them truly technically ignorant and proud of it." Sherm Mullin, Skunk Works

Offline Tailspin Turtle

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Re: General Dynamics / Grumman F-111B
« Reply #6 on: March 08, 2009, 09:47:39 am »
Well, actually, this is only book that has anything on F-111B that lasts more than one page and two photos)
TT, I wonder, if you ever came across of good F-111B general arrangement drawings?

Good, no. Helpful, yes. At the minute, I'm working with a fairly good set of General Dynamics F-111A lines drawings from Jay Miller's F-111 Book, Aero Series 29, some inaccurate Grumman three-views, and photos...

Offline KJ_Lesnick

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Re: General Dynamics / Grumman F-111B
« Reply #7 on: March 08, 2009, 11:57:31 am »
I kind of had a feeling the USN had deliberately fudged figures and skewed information to basically kill the F-111B.

I'm guessing they killed it for the following reasons, though I'm not entirely sure...

  • Partially out of spite because it had been forced down their throat and they didn't want the design to begin with
  • The design wasn't quite agile enough for a fighter design, and was less agile than the F-4 Phantom
  • The VG wings took a long time to transition from full forward to full aft; while the wing was in transit significant g-limits would be imposed (and I remember hearing that even certain wing positions had different g-limits) which would seriously reduce its effectiveness as a fighter

  • The design was less maneuverable than the F-4 and was not quite agile enough for the purposes of being a fighter
  • The design was reduced to 4 x AIM-54 instead of the needed six and the desired eight (From what I remember the glove pylons were removed during the weight reduction programs, I'm not sure if they ever planned to put them back)

  • The design might not have been as fast as the USN wanted (It was almost certainly slower than the high-speed F-4 Phantom II)

  • The Navy didn't like having a side-by-side arrangement on a supersonic fighter.


KJ Lesnick

Offline Nils_D

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Re: General Dynamics / Grumman F-111B
« Reply #8 on: March 08, 2009, 12:03:33 pm »
That's funny considering the side by side requirement came from them to begin with.

Offline OM

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Re: General Dynamics / Grumman F-111B
« Reply #9 on: March 08, 2009, 02:58:20 pm »
That's funny considering the side by side requirement came from them to begin with.

...Correct. Same case with the A-6.


Offline Tailspin Turtle

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Re: General Dynamics / Grumman F-111B
« Reply #10 on: March 08, 2009, 06:42:20 pm »
One of the "interesting" aspects of the F-111 program was engine inlet development. I don't do it justice here and the drawings can't be relied on for detail and accuracy, but this working draft depicts the three major inlet configurations on the seven F-111Bs that flew, two of which had two different inlets during the flight test program...
« Last Edit: March 10, 2009, 01:37:17 pm by Tailspin Turtle »

Offline canisd

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Re: General Dynamics / Grumman F-111B
« Reply #11 on: March 08, 2009, 08:19:58 pm »
I've been working on and off on a profile of what the 111B might have looked like based on TT's book, which I heartily recommend BTW. Not sure how accurate the nose is, haven't checked it yet against the new drawing in this thread.
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Offline Skybolt

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Re: General Dynamics / Grumman F-111B
« Reply #12 on: March 09, 2009, 02:23:47 am »
Well, anyway great work...

Offline KJ_Lesnick

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Re: General Dynamics / Grumman F-111B
« Reply #13 on: March 09, 2009, 10:42:32 am »
Evil Flower,

Quote
That's funny considering the side by side requirement came from them to begin with.

I did say I could be wrong... 

Either way are you sure about the side-by-side arrangement request coming from the Navy?  Because when I looked at the Boeing 818 the USN variant had a tandem cockpit, where as the USAF design had a side-by-side cockpit...


KJ Lesnick
BTW:  Why *did* the USN reject the TFX design?

Offline Nils_D

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Re: General Dynamics / Grumman F-111B
« Reply #14 on: March 09, 2009, 01:11:20 pm »
Well the side-by-side seating stems from the Missileer which of course the navy TFX was supposed to replace.