£460m chopper chop-up

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by A_Knocker_Till_The_End, Jan 17, 2009.

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  1. ARMY chiefs are having to rip new Apache helicopter gunships to bits — because they are desperate for spare parts.

    As many as ten of the £46million choppers have been gutted.

    chop chop

    still it could be worse................................... could'nt it ????
     
  2. I wonder how many Tiffies are checking out what they've got lying around in their, ahem 'unofficial stores'?

    Have the MOD tried EBay?

    P-T
     
  3. It's a struggle to get any spares these days, everyone with Apaches are buying up stock and production times, as sad as it sounds cannibalising the UK fleet may be the only way to get the spares required until the DA start fulfilling the back orders, although it would be nice if we could buy up spares without worrying about costs, then instead of having a years worth we buy 5 years worth, yes there will be waste but there will also be less cost involved with having to rip apart new aircraft and then having to service them, it would more than likely work out cheaper in the long run.

    The biggest problem for all of the helicopter issues is the lead times, getting new helicopters built takes years and getting the spares takes months, just over a year ago we had to go out and buy half a dozen Danish Merlins due to the lack of helicopters and the fact that Westlands couldn't build them in our timeframe, same thing happens with the spares.
     
  4. Because all the feckers holding the purse strings love things like Lean, Just in time and pulse, because they save money in the short term. Its very rare that all the spares are readily available, even in the civvy airliner world. I don't think i have ever got an aircraft out of a major servicing without recourse to the "unofficial" stores.
     

  5. Yep, i think people high up need to start understanding that we aren't Toyota or Ford, they know exactly what they need every day, but they build brand new vehicles, they know exactly what goes in and what is needed to produce their daily amount, they also have limited space so spares can be a problem to store longer term.

    With the MoD we don't build new, we recondition, service and repair, that's it, a job comes in and you don't know if you're going to replace one part or a hundred parts, as for the storing, we're not limited, the MoD have enough storage to store a hundred years worth of spares. The other thing i forgot to mention with costing, say we order 10 P class spares like a gearbox, drive shaft, etc, it might cost say £1 million, but if we order 5 it could cost £600,000, then if we run out and need them in a hurry Westlands turn round and say "well to open up the production line again and get the tooling and taff for gearboxes will cost extra as we're not building gearboxes, we're building rotor heads at present", so we end up paying £1 million for 5 more, not really cost effective but at the time it's down as a £400k saving in the budget!
     
  6. Grim, but at least the spares are on order. Arn't nine of the ten part of the reserve anyway? 48 in service, 9 training, 1 development, 9 in store?
     
  7. Dont know if they are in store or not, but surely they make up part of the UK's order of battle, similar to our tanks.

    In peacetime this is probably acceptable, but when we are still deployed in 2 war zones, we should really be spared sufficient to keep our fleet of apache serviceable 95% of the time.
     
  8. Officially no Apaches are in store.The last one left Shawbury in summer 2007 to Wattisham.3 of the Apaches are with Westland at Yeovil for tests and one other possibly still at Boscombe Down.The others are split between 673 Sqn at Middle Wallop for training(around 12 airframes) and Wattisham,which is the home of both 3 and 4 Regiment,the front-line operator of the Apache.

    When in the concept stage,the order was to be for 100 airframes,then down to 87,then when former Defence Secreatry Michael Portillo announced the order in July 1994,the total had shrunk to 67,the figure never since increased,despite now approaching 8 years of continous war.A sad state of affairs.
     
  9. What about 9 Regiment? Isn't that the third front line one? 16 helos each in 3 regiments?
     
  10. At least something is being done to keep the airframes operational in theatre rather than some red tape preventing the cannibalisation of vehicles.
     
  11. "At least something is being done to keep the airframes operational in theatre rather than some red tape preventing the cannibalisation of vehicles"

    True, but would be embarrassing if we were to need to increase the deployment of airframes in support of additional troops, as is likely to be announced quite soon.
     
  12. Trans-sane

    Trans-sane LE Book Reviewer

    But ultimately is is better to have not enough airframes that actualy work when you need them? Or is is better to have enough airframes that you can't use cos they are falling to bits due to lack of spares? Very much a damned no matter what you do choice...

    What is Flashy's take on this???
     
  13. 9 Regt AAC only has Lynx.
     
  14. Thats not an option though, if we don't have the parts.
     
  15. What is new in this?

    In my day, if an airframe was U/S then it was used as a 'christmas tree', parts being stripped off it so that other a/c could be repaired without waiting for spares that were in the pipeline. I suspect this is what the Sun is chuntering about and not that we are simply not buying spares.

    It's all about keeping as many a/c in the air as possible.