Alternative single fighter for UK in 1960s

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: After 1900' started by Khanzeer, Jun 25, 2019.

  1. Khanzeer Well-Known Member

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    Can the RAf and FAA standardize on a single multirole fighter-bomber in the early 60s ?
    Rather than lightning , javelins , sea vixen, hunter, scimitar, sup swift etc
     
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2019
  2. SsgtC Ready to Call it a Day

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    I like the Hawker P.1121. It's got similar specs and performance to the F-4 Phantom. It was designed as an RAF interceptor, but I'd be curious if it could be made suitable for carrier operations. Unfortunately, it was killed in the 1957 Defense White Paper.
     
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  3. MatthewB Well-Known Member

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    Britain’s Hawker Siddeley’s subsidiary in Canada has the Avro Arrow. The Arrow is designed as a high altitude interceptor, but deltas can be used for multi role.
     
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  4. The Wooksta! Resident soup dragon

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    P.1121 grew out of the P.1103 which was designed to F.155 and which was "won" by Fairey's Delta III. That was cancelled by Sandys as part of the infamous 1957 White Paper. P.1121 was a private venture by Hawker and there was a naval version mooted and drawn up. We've had this conversation before.

    https://www.alternatehistory.com/forum/threads/hawker-p-1121-question.463736/page-2#post-18619885
     
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  5. bsmart Well-Known Member

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    Not going to work as a carrier aircraft for the Fleet Air Arm.
     
  6. MatthewB Well-Known Member

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    A little large, true. But if it can be fitted on deck, the Arrow would have for fantastic fleet air defence.

    Otherwise, Jaguar with radar.
     
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2019
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  7. Khanzeer Well-Known Member

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    How about F101 voodoo
    Interceptor + recon + strike esp nuclear
    Maybe it will not work on aircraft carriers but as a land based interceptor fighter strike it is phenomenal
    FAA just switch to shore based fixed wing fighter bombers?
     
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2019
  8. Peg Leg Pom Well-Known Member

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  9. StevoJH Well-Known Member

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    Requires USD and takes work away from domestic companies, so unlikely.
     
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  10. PhilKearny Free Bill Cameron! Free TFSmith121, too!

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    Makes sense. Plus, it continues a RN tradition. The Corsair was the best FAA figher in WW II.

    LTV can probably reach to make these in the UK, reducing the USD cost and increase work for UK companies. The UK also may be able to make up the USD cost by sending more of those stylish British cars, such as the Hillman Imp, to the US. :)
     
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  11. Peg Leg Pom Well-Known Member

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    It does say they were offered by Short Bros, presumably they intended to build them under licence rather than just act as agents.
     
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  12. ShortsBelfast Events, dear boy, events

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    Indeed, nothing that didn't happen with the Spey Phantom OTL.
     
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  13. Finbarr the Fair Well-Known Member

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    I'd go initially for the Saunders Roe SR177. In development with both RAF and RN versions in 1957. Not perfect as the mixed propulsion system (rocket and jet) was slightly dodgy, to put it mildly. Bit it could be replaced by a late Avon and later the Spey.

    A victim of the Sandystorm again. As others have noted, in the long run Sandys was right about missiles. But as Keynes said, in the long run we're all dead. Premature embrace of high technology without understanding timescales or limitations was the issue then and I think in other British civil and military projects.
     
  14. The Wooksta! Resident soup dragon

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    The two seat Crusader would have been supplied as engineless airframes and completed at Belfast with British engines and avionics.

    And I've said it before,but cancelling SR177 was a good move. The engine, the Gyron Junior, was VERY fuel thirsty and the two aircraft it powered were marginal at best (Buccaneer S.1 and Bristol 188 - which only got the Gyrons at the insistence of the Ministry of Supply as they were left overs from the SR177 prototypes!). Besides which, the rocket fuel, isn't something you'd want to spill on a pitching carrier.

    P.1121 would have been a British F4 in the right timeframe. A pity the only prototype never got finished. Somewhere I have the bits to do a side by side naval version.
     
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  15. bsmart Well-Known Member

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    Looking at the Crusader it appears an excellent choice for the British. The Avon should be an easy replacement for the J-57 (Avon has a marginally smaller diameter so you shouldn't have the problem you had with the Spey in the F-4). Both are very reliable workhorse engines in the same thrust range. The French showed that it can operate off smaller carriers.

    Maybe the XF8U-3 could be developed as a follow on with the Olympus instead of the J-75 to give a Mach 2 capable follow on. And of course there could be a light attack version with a Spey engine (A-7D in U.S> Service.

    A connection with Shorts and ongoing contracts may keep Vought in the tactical aircraft game instead of being gobbled up by Ling-Temco.
     
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  16. El Pip Well-Known Member

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    Definitely not happening in the 60s then. I can't find the exact military figures right now, but for large commercial aircraft engines and 'systems' are 15% of the build cost, final assembly another 5%. You can quibble that military engines are more expensive, but everything military is more expensive so it probably balances out. 80% of the value is going back to the US, and even that's optimistic as I suspect Vougth will claw back a chunk of the avionics spend as well to 'make sure it's compatible'.

    Avon-Crusader would cost a lot to develop and certify, kill of any fighter design or development capability in the UK (bare in mind we are discussing this being the only fighter the UK is building), deliver basically no British jobs and cost a fortune in dollars. It's a terrible idea.
     
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  17. The Wooksta! Resident soup dragon

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    I agree. It's ALWAYS better to design and build in house rather than go for the cheaper option of buying US "off the shelf" as in the long term, you'll be fucked over. I've had this arguments with friends who claim to be more in the know and they're wrong.
     
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  18. CarribeanViking fnord

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    You could actually go further than that. One fighter-bomber for the RAF and FAA combined, doing everything from fleet air defence to strategic interceptor to frontal aviation to theatre strike is feasible- provided it is the proposed Blackburn P.150, the RB106 (or later Iroquois) engined stretched 'Super' Buccaneer. I can't think of a more potentially comprehensively multi- role aircraft that Britain could come up with in the early sixties, albeit provided it gets a decent set of avionics and better cockpit layout.
     
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  19. AdA Well-Known Member

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    Why not something with a RR engine and an ADEN gun?
    [​IMG]
     
  20. Riain Well-Known Member

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    Probably can't be done in the mid 50s, which is the era of the Hunter, Javelin and should have been the era of the Scimitar and Sea Vixen. However it is within the capability of the British aviation industry to build something akin to the Phantom in the 60s if fuckups like the 57 white paper, P1154 and related AW681 can be avoided in favor of a conventional mach 2 multirole fighter. The P1121 get thrown around and poo-poohed in detail, but it's a good example of what the British industry could provide in terms of performance.
     
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