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Modelling Forum / Re: 3D printing
« Last post by Richard N on Yesterday at 10:04:45 pm »
3D printed parts are useful for prototypes or small part runs, but have nowhere near the surface finish or quick production cycles of injection molded parts. 

The surface finish of injection parts can be smooth as glass with fine panel lines and rivet detail while printed parts are covered with grow or printing lines and have to be hand or chemical finished to get a surface that is smooth but nowhere near the quality of an injection part.

Injection part cycle times are measured in seconds to minutes where the mold closes and is injected with molten plastic, cooled with water run through passages in the mold, and finally ejected from the mold.  Printed parts take from hours to days.  3D printing is okay for a single part or prototype, but impractical for most production.

Printed parts for production are practical for small runs of large parts where the run is too small to be worth investing in molds or tooling that would be feasible  for a larger number of parts.

Airfix has nothing to fear from 3D printers.
Postwar Aircraft Projects / Re: US Supersonic Transport (SST) Program 1960-1971
« Last post by Johnbr on Yesterday at 10:02:58 pm »

Ah, long about the "Twelfth of Never", then?

Naw, naw, any day now. Really and for true. My promise of speed is as trustworthy as a politicians claims.
Military / Re: Bradley Replacement - OMFV
« Last post by Colonial-Marine on Yesterday at 08:21:09 pm »
Why is the US Army opposed to simply utilising a modified tank chassis as their MICV?   That way it could be armoured as well as the MBT and be automativelly the same as the MBT and be as maneuverable as the MBT.  An MBT hull is large enough to carry almost any weapon and a section of infantry.
Well that seemed to be the plan for the ASM program. It's probably better to design a new family of AFVs to account for the fact that you'll want the engine in front in some configurations (IFV) and in back in others (MBT) instead of a conversion of an existing design.

There are many who'd argue a MBT-weight IFV is too heavy but considering that you already have to be equipped for those MBTs in logistics matters perhaps those concerns are overstated. They will admittedly be more expensive than a lighter design however.
Military / Re: Bradley Replacement - OMFV
« Last post by Kadija_Man on Yesterday at 08:05:33 pm »
Why is the US Army opposed to simply utilising a modified tank chassis as their MICV?   That way it could be armoured as well as the MBT and be automativelly the same as the MBT and be as maneuverable as the MBT.  An MBT hull is large enough to carry almost any weapon and a section of infantry.
Military / Re: Bradley Replacement - OMFV
« Last post by Colonial-Marine on Yesterday at 06:34:01 pm »
I like the fact that the Lynx can fit a full infantry squad in back, I thought Iraq had highlighted how useful that was with the Stryker, Army can't seem to make up their mind.

jsport I imagine such an IFV using some of the technologies trialed in the CATTB would have been part of the ASM program, shame the Army went off chasing FCS wondertech instead.
That's not a very high standard of evidence.
I'm having trouble digging it up and finding whoever said it but I'm fairly certain that such heresy was openly spoken of.

Math. F-35 critics were thin on the ground, prior to 2013. In relative terms - the F-35 by that time had never undergone the kind of shellacking handed out to the F-22 (Baltimore Sun scored a Pulitzer) or the B-2 (the 60 Minutes hit job and others too numerous to mention). And no program before the F-35 had quite as many paid shills.
Where is this math? The F-35 always had plenty of critics some with the usual ideological motivations and others with more valid concerns. But as usual criticism doesn't shift into high gear until a program is well underway with aircraft/vehicles/whatever in visible testing and the largest sums of money being spent. Prior to that point the JSF was nothing more than a reason we didn't need the F-22 according to some.

What really happened was still an extremely poor decision.
Was it really? The F-22 has a range problem, is costly to operate, and apparently difficult to upgrade; and Gates was being told that the F-35 was 400-600 per cent better in A2A than anything else out there, and that China wouldn't have many stealth aircraft until 2025. We may regret the decision now but it was logical at the time.
It can definitely be considered a mistake when you can't replace aircraft lost to attrition, pay a huge premium to perform upgrades, are stuck trying to overhaul and modernize 30+ year old F-15s to make up for the numbers gap, and have clear evidence that the rest of the world isn't as far behind as was stated. I would expect a SecDef to know more than marketing hype and to have a better understanding of where the Chinese and Russians were. Yet it's clear that was always one of the decisions he wanted to force through. It was logical to only those of that administration's ideological leanings.

Range problem? If you're judging by the new standard to perform long range combat operations in the Pacific then yes. It's range is adequate when compared to most of the fighters currently in service. Costly to operate? Well part of that is another self-inflicted wound from the decision to terminate production so early. Even with those considerations in mind it makes no sense to stop production of what was arguably the world's most capable fighter because of the promise of something better... eventually.
Shouldn't be too long. Say, about the time SLS is regularly flying NASA astronauts to Mars. So there surely won't be any unforeseen delays or needless stalling.
Ah, long about the "Twelfth of Never", then?
Richard P. Henrick, The Phoenix Odyssey, 1986

United States

USS Phoenix (SSBN-???)
Ohio Class Submarine
Details as per the real ships
Armament: 24 Trident C-4 Missiles. Only 23 of the missiles are fitted with warheads. One carries a MILSTAR compatible communications satellite. 4 x 21 inch torpedo tubes (fwd), Mk 48 Torpedoes, Harpoon & Mk 70 Mobile Submarine Simulator (MoSS)
Note: The name not only clashes with that of USS Phoenix (SSN-702) a Los Angeles Class Submarine decommissioned in 1998, it does not fit the naming scheme used for Ohio Class Submarines (US States), even if the author explicitly identifies it as such.

The reason that one missile is fitted with a comsat is part of the submarines current operating procedure. In the event of a prolonged period of silence following an alert (Without a positive fire order being received.) the submarine is to deploy the satellite and if no communication is received within a specified time period the remaining missiles are to be fired at their targets.

USS Orca (SSN-???)
Sturgeon Class Submarine
Details as per the real ships.
Sunk: 1971
Note: Features in a characters backstory. Author explicitly identifies this submarine as a member of the Sturgeon Class.

Delta Base
A "...fully equipped , submarine refitting station." Constructed in secret inside a hollowed out seamount in the Vava'u District of Tonga.
Nuclear powered.
No other details provided

2 x Spruance Class Destroyers
Details as per the real ships.


Kiev (Pr.1143) Class Aircraft Carrier
Real ship, details as in service.

Kara (Project 1134B) Class Cruiser
Real ship, details as in service.

Boris Chilikin
Boris Chilikin (Pr. 1559V) Fleet Oiler
Real ship, details as in service
Note: Armament is modified. Given in novel as 2 x 100mm guns, 1 x AK-630 30mm gatling gun & 1 x SS-N-2 Launcher (Currently carrying a SS-NX-12 missile.). In real life the armament was 2 x AK-725 57mm & 2 x AK-630 30mm gatling guns.

The missile being carried by the Boris Chilikin is a prototype intercontinental cruise missile, not a prototype of the missile that was historically given the designation. Few specifics are given beyond the fact that the weapon is nuclear armed, fitted with a TERCOM guidance system based on pre-programmed way-points and has a range capable of reaching Seattle from a point in the East Siberian sea. Some clues as to dimensions can be worked out based on the fact that a launcher designed for the SS-N-2 Styx missile is being used for the test launch.

Alfa (Pr.705) Class Submarine
Details as per the real ships

2 x Udaloy (Pr.1155) Class Destroyers
Details as per the real ships save that the SA-N-9 AAMs have been replaced with a fictional ABM capable missile designated SA-N-10. The actual SA-N-10 is a derivative of the Igla man portable SAM missile.

Plot summary: It is the day after tomorrow, the Soviet Union prepares to launch Operation: Lenin, a massive naval exercise designed to show once and for all that the Soviet's rule the waves. One key component of this is the launching of a prototype cruise missile, when the missile goes astray it causes a major crisis and in the confusion contact with one submarine is lost. Now the race is on to contact her before she launches.

Notes (Spoilers): Richard P. Henrick (b. 1949) is an author of submarine based fiction for cheap mass market paperbacks active in the 1980s and 1990s who shot to prominence with the making of the film 'Crimson Tide' (1995) for which the author contributed a novelization of his own script. Interestingly the plotline of 'The Phoenix Odyssey' feels like the 'prototype' for the film with the key conflict being between the Phoenix's captain and a US Navy Geologist the submarine is transporting that certain events are the result of natural causes and not the outbreak of WWIII. This may have resulted from the author taking inspiration from an incident during the Cuban Missile Crisis in which the crew of a Russian submarine clashed over whether or not to fire a nuclear torpedo at an American warship.

As to dating when this one is set, the author gives no specifics, most likely it's supposed to be set a few years downstream of the publication date. However in one scene he has the USS Phoenix receive a message using an Extremely Low Frequency radio system, this was something the US Navy set up in the early/mid 1980s. But, the version the author mentions 'Austere ELF', was not what was constructed in the 1980s, but a more capable system proposed in the late 1970s, which raises some interesting questions about just when the story was written.

As with a lot of technothriller type novels written in this time period (Late 70s to mid 90s) the novel has a 'future of the past' quality about it. Other novels exhibiting this 'future of the past' quality are 'Thirty-Four East' (1974), 'The Hastings Conspiracy' (1980) (Both by Alfred Coppel) & 'North Star Crusade' (1976) (William Katz) and 'End Game', 2011 (Matthew Glass), along with what is probably the most well known 'alternative history' sequence, 'Raise the Titanic' (1976), 'Vixen 03' (1978), 'Night Probe' (1981) & 'Deep Six' (1984) (All by Clive Cussler) which are set in an alternative 1980s (The novels are set between 1987 ('Raise the Titanic') & 1989 ('Deep Six').) with many differences from what actually happened, most notably Canada being absorbed by the United States (Something Cussler quietly dropped in later novels.).
Aerospace / Re: Japanese next generation fighter study (aka i3, F-3)
« Last post by TomcatViP on Yesterday at 04:29:43 pm »
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