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AW159 Wildcat Helicopter (RN & AAC)

Contains threads on Joint Service equipment of the past, present and future.
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ArmChairCivvy
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Re: AW159 Wildcat Helicopter (RN & AAC)

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 26 Jul 2017, 22:32

Dahedd wrote:wasn't watch keeper supposed to replace Gazelle in the reconnaissance role?


Yeah, but aside from recce/ observation there are liaison, convoy protection, securing the immediate surroundings of LZs, fast roping specialists to "hard-to-get-to" places... lots and lots of things that you need only one or two helos for (not a whole AAC Rgmnt)
- JHC (Joint Helicopter Command) has been trusted with other assets that don't fit anywhere in a squadron strength (fixed-wing surveillance aircraft, Defender) or require skills that would have to be "grown" from scratch (the case with RA and Watckeeper - a fixed wing a/c that flies off runways!)

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Re: AW159 Wildcat Helicopter (RN & AAC)

Postby donald_of_tokyo » 27 Jul 2017, 01:02

marktigger wrote:and be the admirals barge
Why? French navy is still using Alouette II for SAR = not for admirals barge. Surely limited in its capability (sensor will be only 2-3 Eyeball Mk.1, some updated with personal FLIR), but actions such as, sending medic/VIP, search/patrol, chasing smugglers boats and even sniping their engine will be doable?
Dahedd wrote:My thinking Donald was that they already heave the standard naval Lynx. Check the flak the fleet out & pick the aircraft in the best condition to hang onto
Uhmm, no idea. Disbanding a whole fleet of a single type of aircraft save a lot of money. It may be cheaper to buy 5-6 bare-born Wildcats in long term? We are talking about something needed throughout the CV life?

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Re: AW159 Wildcat Helicopter (RN & AAC)

Postby Dahedd » 27 Jul 2017, 12:37

Going well OT now but still thinking on saving using Merlin & Wildcat for "menial" roles If we can dig some Sea Kings out of storage to help the Germans http://www.royalnavy.mod.uk/news-and-la ... wall-skies

then why not pick the best of the retiring but upgraded Commando Sea Kings & deploy them on the carriers as general taxi & plane guard. They spent a fortune upgrading then for Afghanistan so why not take advantage.


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Re: AW159 Wildcat Helicopter (RN & AAC)

Postby Dahedd » 27 Jul 2017, 13:22

Well thats disappointing. I'm not convinced we should be selling anything to that lot.

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Re: AW159 Wildcat Helicopter (RN & AAC)

Postby donald_of_tokyo » 27 Jul 2017, 15:09

In case of SeaKing, FAA still has some for AEW. So, restoring some in store may work. This is completely different from Lynx. (Although they were already sold?).

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Re: AW159 Wildcat Helicopter (RN & AAC)

Postby Spinflight » 04 Aug 2017, 04:47

Isn't Leonardo about to be broken up?

In which case what happens to westlands?

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Re: AW159 Wildcat Helicopter (RN & AAC)

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 04 Aug 2017, 08:39

Spinflight wrote:Isn't Leonardo about to be broken up?

In which case what happens to westlands?


You could have come to that conclusion in May, reading up on the background of the new CEO (joined McKinsey & Company where he was in charge of strategic and organisational projects for financial companies). And what has happened to helicopter companies - not just the bit players, but the majors - lately? Even the Italian part of the helicopter division falls into bit players by any metric.

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Re: AW159 Wildcat Helicopter (RN & AAC)

Postby abc123 » 04 Aug 2017, 10:21

donald_of_tokyo wrote: This is completely different from Lynx..



What happened with former FAA Lynxes?
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Re: AW159 Wildcat Helicopter (RN & AAC)

Postby james k » 06 Sep 2017, 16:31

I believe that HMA8 Lynx will be used for spares and instructional air frames. I may be wrong.

abc123 wrote:
donald_of_tokyo wrote: This is completely different from Lynx..



What happened with former FAA Lynxes?

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Re: AW159 Wildcat Helicopter (RN & AAC)

Postby marktigger » 06 Sep 2017, 18:02

one has been converted into a Bar at yeovilton

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Re: AW159 Wildcat Helicopter (RN & AAC)

Postby Timmymagic » 06 Sep 2017, 22:36

marktigger wrote:one has been converted into a Bar at yeovilton


Thats a more dignified retirement than scrapping as well.

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Re: AW159 Wildcat Helicopter (RN & AAC)

Postby Opinion3 » 17 Oct 2017, 22:39

shark bait wrote:"the Royal Navy Wildcats currently lack a data link"

That's the dumbest thing I've heard in a while, how is that acceptable? Brand new kit and its only way of transferring data is the same way they did in WW2.

Building any new kit build without a data link is a stupid idea, never mind the off-board system that's is going to be the sole anti shipping weapon for the fleet.


Just read the whole thread and agree this is insanely dumb.......

wisdom wrote:"Royal Navy lacks means to kill"

But then my short summary is we have a new helicopter that can't find subs and can attempt to kill a surface vessel provided it has the right weapon (unlikely as there are many choices) and none of them will really kill a big warship even if the Wildcat were lucky enough to see it get a weapon off and on target before it got blasted out of the sky.

It has a big brother but that has no weapons, it can be used to hunt subs and is one of the best assets in the business however in order to kill a sub it requires a Wildcat, which has no datalink, to achieve the kill. The ships have no other means to prosecute another ship

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Re: AW159 Wildcat Helicopter (RN & AAC)

Postby marktigger » 17 Oct 2017, 23:04

merlin can carry torpedoes..........It shoulld also be equipped with missiles thereby negating any need for wildcat. But agree its a monumental mistake nt having a data link in both army and navy wildcats

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Re: AW159 Wildcat Helicopter (RN & AAC)

Postby shark bait » 18 Oct 2017, 07:42

That doesn't really remove the need for Wildcat, which builds upon a combat proven model. Merlin could do the job, but with twice the size and cost.
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Re: AW159 Wildcat Helicopter (RN & AAC)

Postby indeid » 18 Oct 2017, 10:59

marktigger wrote:merlin can carry torpedoes..........It shoulld also be equipped with missiles thereby negating any need for wildcat. But agree its a monumental mistake nt having a data link in both army and navy wildcats


Interoperability is expensive and time consuming, so is a great source of savings if money or time is tight. Depending on the system the kit can be quite bulky, giving another excuse at project level to get rid of it. All wrong, but until networking is managed centrally it will keep happening.

I do have some sympathy in that one solution doesn't fit Army and Navy. I can only think of one Army unit that uses Link16, so they would likely want IDM/VMF, which the Navy won't want. And the Navy links aren't fully integrated on all the ships so you could talk youself into it not being needed.

No doubt the people making the decisions will have been promoted for saving the cash and be well out of the way by the time it goes wrong. Or I could just be in a cynical mood today.........

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Re: AW159 Wildcat Helicopter (RN & AAC)

Postby marktigger » 18 Oct 2017, 11:52

thats the problem with trying to do ONE SIZE fits all product

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Re: AW159 Wildcat Helicopter (RN & AAC)

Postby Lord Jim » 18 Oct 2017, 12:02

One problem of many.

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Re: AW159 Wildcat Helicopter (RN & AAC)

Postby Ron5 » 18 Oct 2017, 19:12

RN leader of the Wildcat program said his top two wish list items would be datalink and cabin fuel tanks like the Koreans have.

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Re: AW159 Wildcat Helicopter (RN & AAC)

Postby Opinion3 » 03 Dec 2017, 22:40

In a real shooting war would be not just do the Wildcat properly like the Koreans? i.e. better radar, a datalink and weapons. If the gain extra endurance that sounds like a no brainer too

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Re: AW159 Wildcat Helicopter (RN & AAC)

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 04 Dec 2017, 03:37

Ron5 wrote:RN leader of the Wildcat program said his top two wish list items would be datalink and cabin fuel tanks like the Koreans have.


It is not easy to make a first rate marinised helicopter. Here we have one, and spoiling it for the want of a couple of pennies' worth of tar.
- and as for the army, they could release, say, 8 of their unwanted (?) Wildcats for the once conceptualised Light Attack conversion
- in that way there would be less need to take the Apaches out to sea, to gather rust quicker than otherwise. Not saying that they shouldn't be used to the full in an all-out scenario

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Re: AW159 Wildcat Helicopter (RN & AAC)

Postby Lord Jim » 04 Dec 2017, 03:55

How feasible would it be to take say 8 "Army" Wildcats and turn them into "Navy" versions or similar. The LMM would be a good fit for a light attack variant as would the door gun etc. It wouldn't need all the sensors of the full "Navy" version, but having the radar would enable it to be used as a MRA asset on platforms like the Rivers if needed.

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Re: AW159 Wildcat Helicopter (RN & AAC)

Postby marktigger » 04 Dec 2017, 06:58

ArmChairCivvy wrote:
Ron5 wrote:RN leader of the Wildcat program said his top two wish list items would be datalink and cabin fuel tanks like the Koreans have.


It is not easy to make a first rate marinised helicopter. Here we have one, and spoiling it for the want of a couple of pennies' worth of tar.
- and as for the army, they could release, say, 8 of their unwanted (?) Wildcats for the once conceptualised Light Attack conversion
- in that way there would be less need to take the Apaches out to sea, to gather rust quicker than otherwise. Not saying that they shouldn't be used to the full in an all-out scenario



Read "Apache over Libya" by Will Laidlaw and you wlll see what a non starter the idea of "Light Attack" wildcat is Apache needs to be able to operate from the sea in order to support landing forces and project power. To do that you need a rugged well protected platform words that don't really describe Wildcat

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Re: AW159 Wildcat Helicopter (RN & AAC)

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 04 Dec 2017, 09:14

marktigger wrote:t you need a rugged well protected platform words that don't really describe Wildcat

Agreed. Yes, you will need to be able to bring Apaches to bear, when needed. They are, however, riding on the same platform as the F-35s so it will be either or. This does not apply to Light Attack Wildcats (btw, how light, as for the armament? - we were never told)

marktigger wrote:what a non starter the idea of "Light Attack" wildcat is Apache needs to be able to operate from the sea in order to support landing forces and project power.

- will the new ones be marinised? In the US they have had three (!) non-starts to that end
- and for how long will we need to live with the reduced order? The original 50 was equally apportioned to support the mech (AI) force and the amph. (mainly RM) force... what does this imply for the half (or less?) that trains on the carriers?

Genuine questions; I don't know

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Re: AW159 Wildcat Helicopter (RN & AAC)

Postby Gabriele » 04 Dec 2017, 09:29

The Light Assault Helicopter was never going to be an attack platform aka with missiles. It would still have had an M3M, maybe a minigun one day. It would have come with extra radios and kits for special forces small teams of 4 (can't really carry more anyway) and would have replaced the last few Lynx 9A in the Special Forces support role.

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