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Merlin helicopters

Contains threads on Royal Navy equipment of the past, present and future.
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Gabriele
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Re: Merlin helicopters

Postby Gabriele » 14 Oct 2017, 13:57

If the Chinook and Puma were in the Army where they should be, there would not be a JHC at all as it would be utterly redundant and pointless. It is exactly because battlefield support helicopters ended up in Light Blue that JHC became necessary.
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Re: Merlin helicopters

Postby whitelancer » 14 Oct 2017, 17:51

Its also why we ended up with loads of heavy lift helicopters and no proper assault and utility machines. The RAF wouldn't want the Blackhawk for instance, because it would be so obvious that it should belong to the AAC their would be a risk of them losing it. In my opinion with JHC they are trying to take control of all aviation assets via the back door. As they did with Joint Force Harrier and are doing with the F35B.

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Re: Merlin helicopters

Postby Tinman » 14 Oct 2017, 18:31

whitelancer wrote:Its also why we ended up with loads of heavy lift helicopters and no proper assault and utility machines. The RAF wouldn't want the Blackhawk for instance, because it would be so obvious that it should belong to the AAC their would be a risk of them losing it. In my opinion with JHC they are trying to take control of all aviation assets via the back door. As they did with Joint Force Harrier and are doing with the F35B.


If the RAF required the UH60 it would get it, but there is no requirement for it, fro weather the Army or the RAF. AH64E, Wildcat, CH47 are a rather potent force that fits the requirements laid down by JHC, Land etc.

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Re: Merlin helicopters

Postby downsizer » 14 Oct 2017, 19:06

Raf wanted Blackhawk and Chinny but was forced into merlin for political reasons.

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Re: Merlin helicopters

Postby whitelancer » 14 Oct 2017, 19:24

Tinman wrote:If the RAF required the UH60 it would get it, but there is no requirement for it, fro weather the Army or the RAF. AH64E, Wildcat, CH47 are a rather potent force that fits the requirements laid down by JHC, Land etc.

That's rather the point, the RAF doesn't require an assault or utility helicopter, but the Army does. The CH47 does some things very well. If you want to shift equipment and supplies, or move large numbers of personnel quickly its perfect. But if you need to move small numbers of personnel, commanders for instance, or small loads its an extravagance. More importantly using it to conduct air assaults is hardly ideal. Is it sensible to risk a CH47, loaded with troops going into a hot or potentially hot LZ? Losing just one could have serious consequences. Losing a Chinook was one of the major worries of the Commanders in Afghanistan, not to mention the Politian's.
What you want when conducting an air assault is a smaller helicopter that can carry a section or so of troops, which is agile and can be armed, capable of landing in confined spaces when necessary and taking a degree of damage, the loss of which is acceptable.

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Re: Merlin helicopters

Postby abc123 » 15 Oct 2017, 12:06

whitelancer wrote:Its also why we ended up with loads of heavy lift helicopters and no proper assault and utility machines. The RAF wouldn't want the Blackhawk for instance, because it would be so obvious that it should belong to the AAC their would be a risk of them losing it. In my opinion with JHC they are trying to take control of all aviation assets via the back door. As they did with Joint Force Harrier and are doing with the F35B.


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Re: Merlin helicopters

Postby Lord Jim » 15 Oct 2017, 16:28

Moving small number of personnel around is a role the Wildcat will eventually take over when it is realized that as a Recce platform it is lacking. In armed manned recce by helicopter is just too high a risk in todays climate of risk aversion. I could do the job but they MoD are not will to invest in kitting the Wildcat out to a spec necessary to do it effectively.

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Re: Merlin helicopters

Postby downsizer » 15 Oct 2017, 17:17

whitelancer wrote:In my opinion with JHC they are trying to take control of all aviation assets via the back door.


Wrong, JHC is an army machine and is Joint with a capital A.

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Re: Merlin helicopters

Postby shark bait » 15 Oct 2017, 17:29

does it really matter whose badge is on the side?
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Re: Merlin helicopters

Postby Smokey » 15 Oct 2017, 18:16

There hasn’t been an RAF boss since 2014.

Present one is RN, Army prior to that.

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Re: Merlin helicopters

Postby Tinman » 15 Oct 2017, 18:40

shark bait wrote:does it really matter whose badge is on the side?


Yes, as each of the services have differing T&C's, the army tend to be more right you are this age now Foxtrot oscar.

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Re: Merlin helicopters

Postby indeid » 15 Oct 2017, 18:48

Tinman wrote: the army tend to be more right you are this age now Foxtrot oscar.


Can you send the key setting for that?

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Re: Merlin helicopters

Postby whitelancer » 15 Oct 2017, 20:56

shark bait wrote:does it really matter whose badge is on the side?


It matters a lot, and its not only which service "owns and operates" a particular capability but it matters even within services. Of course those who disagree will say that any problems that may have occurred in the past are not relevant today and its all sweetness and light in todays Joint world. Pardon me if I'm sceptical. Particularly as you get problems within services as much as you do between services.

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Re: Merlin helicopters

Postby Opinion3 » 16 Oct 2017, 22:34

It is a shame we didn't pick up some of the Merlins going cheap. e.g. the Presidential helicopters, I do wonder if we have enough Merlin and whether they are as completely specified as perhaps they should be.

The Merlin can do mine sweeping as well, there is much potential that hasn't been utilised in our armed forces.

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Re: Merlin helicopters

Postby Simon82 » 17 Oct 2017, 00:01

I’ve always wondered why we’ve never gone down the path of mine sweeping by helicopter, especially since the Merlin is deemed suitable for such tasks by the JMSDF.

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Re: Merlin helicopters

Postby Dahedd » 17 Oct 2017, 08:40

I concur. Always struck me as odd how both the usn & Japanese navy do this type of clearance but we don't.

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Re: Merlin helicopters

Postby marktigger » 17 Oct 2017, 10:53

and in gulf wars 1 & 2 the US navy relied on Royal navy minehunters and between did a limited investment in their own mine hunters.

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Re: Merlin helicopters

Postby shark bait » 17 Oct 2017, 11:32

Choice is sweep from a helicopter for three hours a day, or sweep from a boat for 12 hours a day. The former costs thousands of pounds per hour to operate, the latter costs hundreds of pounds per hours to operate.
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Re: Merlin helicopters

Postby marktigger » 17 Oct 2017, 11:59

and sweeping only covers some of the mine threat

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Re: Merlin helicopters

Postby Simon82 » 17 Oct 2017, 12:42

I can easily appreciate that sweeping with a helicopter towed sled would be expensive and more subject to weather conditions compared to mine sweeping/hunting with surface vessels and ROVs. The question then surely is why do the USN and JMSDF persist with sweeping by helicopters when it is such an costly and inefficient method?

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Re: Merlin helicopters

Postby RetroSicotte » 17 Oct 2017, 12:59

Simon82 wrote:I can easily appreciate that sweeping with a helicopter towed sled would be expensive and more subject to weather conditions compared to mine sweeping/hunting with surface vessels and ROVs. The question then surely is why do the USN and JMSDF persist with sweeping by helicopters when it is such an costly and inefficient method?


They don't do it instead of ship based minesweeping.

They do it in addition to.

As for why the UK doesn't, well it comes back to the exact same issue as everything else.

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Re: Merlin helicopters

Postby marktigger » 17 Oct 2017, 13:17

and the surface based mine hunter gives more in terms of value

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Re: Merlin helicopters

Postby Smokey » 18 Oct 2017, 19:47


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Re: Merlin helicopters

Postby SKB » 18 Oct 2017, 23:19

King Arthur burial site confirmed. :twisted:

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Re: Merlin helicopters

Postby Opinion3 » 22 Oct 2017, 18:47

marktigger wrote:and the surface based mine hunter gives more in terms of value


Granted, but if there is one area where I feel technology should save money in the Forces, and hasn't partially yet, it is in the use of remote, unmanned vehicles. Using helicopters with remote vehicles (quite possibly wired) to hunt for mines and submarines sounds like it has much potential and a long journey to go. I wasn't particularly advocating a reallocation of resources for this task, but more a good bit of university research funding or something like that


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