A400M

Sexton Blake

War Hero
A400M failed to meet most of it’s Stated KURs and the ones it never can, were simply written out of a new revised contract.

it does not do what was promised.

would you buy a 1 Tonne van, then when you go to pick it up, accept it when told, it’s going to cost yiu a lot more than you signed for, the side loading doors don’t work properly for passengers, it’s only able to carry 3/4 of a tonne, it’s heavier than promised, it doesn’t have the range you were promised, And the cab heater doesnt work, but we’ve put a blanket in the back to keep your legs warm.
Link to the KURs please if you can?

But more worryingly, you have just described the van that I currently possess. Peugeot, never again!

Just realised, it’s the French again!
 
To a certain degree yes, but as new eqpt is procured such as bigger vehicles, boats, and other military paraphernalia (as well as new TTPs and man carrying parachutes) we had to continually run trials and evaluation on the C130s. So no, we did very much 'have to achieve' things with it. Unless my 36 years of being involved in that sphere was a dream.

As I stated earlier I was part of a team conducting airdrop trials and new capabilities right up to 2013. The same is of the C130J now (we are still doing new stuff with it) and therefore the Atlas now and for ever more.

that’s called UK in service certification, not ground up developing an aircrafts capability.
from the get go, you could jump out the side door of a C-130, proving UK the cutes was just that, a box tick, no differ the to shoving a pallet out the back with a UK chute and saying, ‘yes, UK chutes work fine’.

not as the case with the A400, it’s been a massive, multi year redevelopment effort to work round an inherent and dangerous design flaw that’s never going to really go away.
Which considering jumping out the side doors of an A400 was a stated KUR, is a pretty huge design and development cock up - but not the only one.

if you could grant the RAFs head 3 wishes, one of them would be to make that accursed plane go away. They never wanted it, it will never be much more than a less than useful albatross.
 
From a historical perspective, we used the C-130 sparingly in the early months 1968. It was more from a tasking priority of it being used for other jobs.
Ab initio para training was primarily serviced by the Argosy and Andover airframes. Towards the end of 1968, the C-130 became very much to the forefront of static-line training.

Interestingly, the airframe chosen for an operational f/fall insertion on to a jebel location the Musandam peninsula was the Andover, with the build up training descents from the same airframe in 1970. There were C-130's in service, but they were being prioritised for equipment and personnel deliveries into Salalah air strip with a very practised fast turn around to Mazierah (sp?)
Can I just to add, the Hercs were certainly doing drops for the PTS at Abingdon in 1967 and attempted the first ULLA drop at Old Sarum the same year (that didn't go well and the big cheeses who were watching walked away shaking their heads). By the time I got to Fairford in Jan 1969, Hercs were well into routine MSP drops at Watchfield and JATE were frequent visitors doing drop trials for equipment that wasn't in the US inventory. If memory serves me right, a heavy drop platform was undergoing trials.

Many times Hercs that were tasked for an overseas pax-cum-freight flight, were rigged for a static line para drop and the passengers who turned up were the gentlemen who shuffled their NoK forms before one of the group handed them over at the pax desk. What stood out was they always loaded their own baggage including their parachutes - we weren't allowed to touch their kit. These flights were always a 47 Sqn tasking.
 

RBMK

War Hero
It's true that the A400M has had a lot of teething problems, but these are gradually being sorted out.

Part of the issue was that the design spec was to have a relatively fast aircraft with STOL capabilities capable of operating from short and rough fields.Props are better than jets for STOL because you get more airflow over the control surfaces.

This requirement led to the more streamlined shape of the rear of the aircraft to reduce drag, and this is, in part, the cause of the para jumping issues.

For some jobs a Herc is just too slow, and a Galaxy has limited short / rough field capability.
 
It's true that the A400M has had a lot of teething problems, but these are gradually being sorted out.

Part of the issue was that the design spec was to have a relatively fast aircraft with STOL capabilities capable of operating from short and rough fields.Props are better than jets for STOL because you get more airflow over the control surfaces.

This requirement led to the more streamlined shape of the rear of the aircraft to reduce drag, and this is, in part, the cause of the para jumping issues.

For some jobs a Herc is just too slow, and a Galaxy has limited short / rough field capability.
sort of.

it was meant to have 4 RR turbofans,

48E91B0C-A789-4AD7-8EB9-D9853460628C.jpeg


but Non! Shouted The French.
they wanted work for State owned SNECMA who had an empty order book, so a turboprop based on a SNECMA core was demanded To give them an exclusive product.
And there’s the problem right there, to get the thrust required, required the west’s biggest turbofans and huge props that generated enormous and unplanned for turbulence. the resonance from these huge props even caused structural hull damage to the prototypes required substatial redesign and strengthening of the hull... see the A400’s relentless weight gain problem.
 
From a historical perspective, we used the C-130 sparingly in the early months 1968. It was more from a tasking priority of it being used for other jobs.
Ab initio para training was primarily serviced by the Argosy and Andover airframes. Towards the end of 1968, the C-130 became very much to the forefront of static-line training.

Interestingly, the airframe chosen for an operational f/fall insertion on to a jebel location the Musandam peninsula was the Andover, with the build up training descents from the same airframe in 1970. There were C-130's in service, but they were being prioritised for equipment and personnel deliveries into Salalah air strip with a very practised fast turn around to Mazierah (sp?)
Ta v much @Alec_Lomas
 
I will not dispute the noise an A400 Atlas makes (nor do I know the difference to that of a C130 in comparison) but what does that matter?

That is a serious question which I would like to know your thoughts on.

I have operated/set up more Drop Zones than I care to mention (for C130). Unless you know the run in (direction) and time overhead you can’t hear eff all until almost the last minute!
Have you ever been on a DZ? Are you comparing noise on the pans to that in flight?
If the enemy are using their ears as a defence against TAC AT we are knackered completely unless we fly in Unicorns.
I've been on an ex DZ where a C130 kindly delivered us radio spares via low level boot at night.
It was quieter than I expected, but you could pick out the aircraft as it first circled and then set down for the run in, dropped and disappeared.
I doubt the enemy will set up listening posts per se but it might well be a "hear anything at night that's unusual, go tell this man " to the local villagers who might not be on side. Obviously a high level jump will probably be out of earshot.
 
that’s called UK in service certification, not ground up developing an aircrafts capability.
from the get go, you could jump out the side door of a C-130, proving UK the cutes was just that, a box tick, no differ the to shoving a pallet out the back with a UK chute and saying, ‘yes, UK chutes work fine’.
The C130K you could - but as others pointed out that was a proven design when it entered UK Service.

When the C130J arrived however it was a new unproven aircraft and it had to be developed to do what the K could**, there were even concerns about para dropping from both doors simultaneously due to prop wash and colliding paras - a situation later resolved.

It was even categorically stated by some that it would never be able to replace the K in the SF role as it was unsafe at low level - There was /is/ allegedly was an issue with the stall characteristics.

There were lots of concerns and nay saying about carbon fibre props and rough field as well.

I cant be alone in noting how a lot of those seem to be the same naysaying arguments against the A400M

30 years down the line and i think the only negative comparison which still possibly holds true - is the point re the hmg round which traversed the flight deck of a K - behind the instrument panel - missing everything. It was noted the depth of the EFIS units and mass of cabling behind there on a J - it would have knocked out one set of instruments


** There have been numerous claims it will never be able to match the K - The issue being Lockheed - modern certification and risk aversion. The RAF were instrumental in the original C130s growth in capability as they pushed it harder and longer than other operators - did something of necessity and then wrote it up. Marshall Aerospace having design authority also enabled a close working relationship and working together the UK could approve stuff the US hadent yet considered

Back when the J was new it was certainly the case that any "can we" went via Lockheed and was met with a terse Computer says no. Allegedly down to litigation concerns and the need to avoid any accident / incident generating negative press for the new type adding to the known issues and the usual ill informed - why cant it do everything on day 1 - its a flawed design (currently afflicting - Typhoon, F35, QE, A400 etc
 
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ABNredleg

War Hero
Sometimes it’s the little things you have to be careful about when fielding new aircraft. When the C-17 came into service the US airborne units were using T-10 chutes, which had been around for decades. After several issues during jumps they had to be modified with lengthened static lines. Even though the C-130 was an off the shelf design in the 60’s when purchased by the RAF, they hadn’t been tested with British equipment when initially fielded.
 
The C130K you could - but as others pointed out that was a proven design when it entered UK Service.

When the C130J arrived however it was a new unproven aircraft and it had to be developed to do what the K could**, there were even concerns about para dropping from both doors simultaneously due to prop wash and colliding paras - a situation later resolved.

It was even categorically stated by some that it would never be able to replace the K in the SF role as it was unsafe at low level - There was /is/ allegedly was an issue with the stall characteristics.

There were lots of concerns and nay saying about carbon fibre props and rough field as well.

I cant be alone in noting how a lot of those seem to be the same naysaying arguments against the A400M

30 years down the line and i think the only negative comparison which still possibly holds true - is the point re the hmg round which traversed the flight deck of a K - behind the instrument panel - missing everything. It was noted the depth of the EFIS units and mass of cabling behind there on a J - it would have knocked out one set of instruments


** There have been numerous claims it will never be able to match the K - The issue being Lockheed - modern certification and risk aversion. The RAF were instrumental in the original C130s growth in capability as they pushed it harder and longer than other operators - did something of necessity and then wrote it up. Marshall Aerospace having design authority also enabled a close working relationship and working together the UK could approve stuff the US hadent yet considered

Back when the J was new it was certainly the case that any "can we" went via Lockheed and was met with a terse Computer says no. Allegedly down to litigation concerns and the need to avoid any accident / incident generating negative press for the new type adding to the known issues and the usual ill informed - why cant it do everything on day 1 - its a flawed design (currently afflicting - Typhoon, F35, QE, A400 etc

meanwhile, back at the a ranch, the RAF want MC-130H’s , not A400’s for cutting about in places they shouldn’t be.

1 type becomes 2, Was intended to become 1, but becomes rationalised into 3 - how not to save money.

And all the RAF wanted was 25 new C-130’s and a few extra c-17’s.
 

aardvark64

War Hero
Sometimes it’s the little things you have to be careful about when fielding new aircraft. When the C-17 came into service the US airborne units were using T-10 chutes, which had been around for decades. After several issues during jumps they had to be modified with lengthened static lines. Even though the C-130 was an off the shelf design in the 60’s when purchased by the RAF, they hadn’t been tested with British equipment when initially fielded.
Ah, the perils of "Off The Shelf" procurement. Why do UK MOD DE&S & FLCs never learn this simple lesson. There is no such thing if you want to have national equipment or tactics.

To be cynical: it's more a matter of air miles. After all, Fort Worth is far preferable to Lytham St Annes as a tourist business destination, maybe even Munich for that matter.
 
The C130K you could - but as others pointed out that was a proven design when it entered UK Service.

When the C130J arrived however it was a new unproven aircraft and it had to be developed to do what the K could**, there were even concerns about para dropping from both doors simultaneously due to prop wash and colliding paras - a situation later resolved.

It was even categorically stated by some that it would never be able to replace the K in the SF role as it was unsafe at low level - There was /is/ allegedly was an issue with the stall characteristics.

There were lots of concerns and nay saying about carbon fibre props and rough field as well.

I cant be alone in noting how a lot of those seem to be the same naysaying arguments against the A400M

30 years down the line and i think the only negative comparison which still possibly holds true - is the point re the hmg round which traversed the flight deck of a K - behind the instrument panel - missing everything. It was noted the depth of the EFIS units and mass of cabling behind there on a J - it would have knocked out one set of instruments


** There have been numerous claims it will never be able to match the K - The issue being Lockheed - modern certification and risk aversion. The RAF were instrumental in the original C130s growth in capability as they pushed it harder and longer than other operators - did something of necessity and then wrote it up. Marshall Aerospace having design authority also enabled a close working relationship and working together the UK could approve stuff the US hadent yet considered

Back when the J was new it was certainly the case that any "can we" went via Lockheed and was met with a terse Computer says no. Allegedly down to litigation concerns and the need to avoid any accident / incident generating negative press for the new type adding to the known issues and the usual ill informed - why cant it do everything on day 1 - its a flawed design (currently afflicting - Typhoon, F35, QE, A400 etc
We don't have the same box ticking acceptance or much of the go it alone opportunities nowadays, manufacturers want the cash and Haddon-Cave has affected lots. I've no doubt that we could do quick and dirty mods if needed but we're quite risk averse under these constraints now.
 
C-17 pilots might tend to disagree.
Increasingly, the C-17 is doing SF stuff.

Which is somewhat at odds with the pervious claim that the A400M is just too big to be used in an SF role.

It may be unsuited for some tasks - but thats not all and unsuited for some applies to everything:
 
Which is somewhat at odds with the pervious claim that the A400M is just too big to be used in an SF role.

It may be unsuited for some tasks - but thats not all and unsuited for some applies to everything:
The A400 will
mature into an excellent Strat air transport, para drop, once all the issues are ironed out.
Imagine if @PhotEx was around when C130 was being introduced.
 

Sexton Blake

War Hero
meanwhile, back at the a ranch, the RAF want MC-130H’s , not A400’s for cutting about in places they shouldn’t be.

1 type becomes 2, Was intended to become 1, but becomes rationalised into 3 - how not to save money.

And all the RAF wanted was 25 new C-130’s and a few extra c-17’s.
PhotEx,

I am actually going to give you a 'like' for that post.

I do believe that you and I are debating on different levels. Mine being that the UK/RAF will make the Atlas an excellent TAC/STRAT (whatever) aircraft in the near future. You are more along the lines of we should never have got it in the first place.

Neither of us are very right or very wrong but at least healthy debate continues.

SB
 

aardvark64

War Hero
Which is somewhat at odds with the pervious claim that the A400M is just too big to be used in an SF role.

It may be unsuited for some tasks - but thats not all and unsuited for some applies to everything:
I see your C-17 and raise you an A400M

 

ABNredleg

War Hero
C-17 pilots might tend to disagree.
Increasingly, the C-17 is doing SF stuff.

The USAF had a squadron of C-141s modified for spec ops with a FLIR, NVG compatible HUD and cockpit instruments, and improved defensive aids.
 

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