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A-7 Corsair and F-8 Crusader

Started by upnorth, November 01, 2005, 02:28:49 AM

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upnorth

I've been considering picking up Italeri's 1/72 A-7E CorsairII lately for a RAF What If idea. Here's a rudimentary backstory and and a few ideas I have right now, any other ideas or suggestions are welcome.

The Buccaneer S.2B development that was to, among other things, replace the Canberra in the strike role, particularly in Germany; is cancelled. No clear reason is given, funding is simply pulled and tooling is ordered to be destroyed.

Without replacement, the Canberras soldier on, but accident attrition, due to age and airframe fatigue in the Canberra fleet becomes a serious issue and the strike role is still crucial. The Buccaneer S.2B is no longer an option and the Sepecat Jaguar is still in the future and is looking doubtful.

In desperation, the Ministry of Defence turns its eyes to the A-7 Corsair II and brokers a deal similar to that of the F-4 Phantom; that being a license built variant with a certain percentage of British content.

The first A-7s (modified B versions) hit RAF service in the later part of the 60s. The first of the Modified E versions came into RAF service in the mid 70s.

A force reduction in the RAF's A-7 fleet was projected for the early 80s, pending complete retirement of the type by the mid 80s. However the Sepecat Jaguar program had been behind schedule and way over budget. The Jaguar was produced, but in much reduced numbers, it enjoyed a modest, but short service life due to technical problems that plagued the type. The A-7 soldiered on until the early 90s when it finally was retired.

"Anglifications" included:

New engine, I'm thinking non afterburning Spey here, but other ideas are welcome

No cannons, a weight saving measure initially meant to increase the type's fuel capacity in the "B" version. In the "E" version, a laser range finder was put in place of the Vulcan cannon.

RWR in the tail fin, the prominent type you see in the Tornados and Jaguars. Perhaps also a "towel rack" style antenna somewhere as well.

I'm thinking about puting it in a mid 80s wraparound scheme as I have some 5 sqn. decals that should fit it nicely from that era.

Three ideas are swimming around my head for loadouts on her:

1: (mid 80s RAF Germany) ECM and chaff pods on the outer wing stations with a load of 12 BL 755 cluster bombs; 6 on MERs on each inboard wing station and 3 on TERs on the mid wing stations. Of course, Sidewinders for self defence.

2: (late 80s RAF maritime strike) Auxiliary fuel tanks on inboard pylons and a pair of Sea Eagles on the mid wing stations and a data link for the Sea Eagles on one or the other outboard pylons.

3: (Early 90s "Operation Granby") Just like with the USN, this is the RAF A-7's swan song as they get retired shortly after it. Desert pink camo usually seen carrying Paveway type laser bombs.

Its just a small idea right now. Does the back story sound plausible? It's all just a start for now, any ideas are welcome.

Radish

Anniversary markings always look good....ExtraDecal do lots.

also, why retire after the Gulf War? The Jaguar is still operating if only in now disgracefully tiny numbers.
I believe the US engine (TF-30)?? was derived from the Spey so a direct use of Spey wouldn't have been too far fetched?

A nice dirty grey one with lots of stores over Bosnia?

Oh, and you've just GOT to keep a gun! :rolleyes:  
Once you've visited the land of the Loonies, a return is never far away.....

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waynos

I don't even think the TF-30 could be claimed to be 'based on' the Spey could it? It was just a straight licence build of it as far as I know.

I think a 6Sqn 'flying can opener' Corsair GR.1 would be a good subject.

Geoff_B

Erm the Corsair flew with a US built Spey anyway !!!! - A Rolls Royce one would be obvious choice for a Locally produced machine.

Not sure that 5 Sqdn would be a suitable choice possibly 1, 3 or 4 from the Harrier units 6, 41 & 54 from the Jaguar as these are more the Close Air Support units. 5 sqdn being a traditional interceptor unit.

I could see the Corsair as a Jaguar alternative but i doubt it would be instead of the Buccaneer as the Bucc was already established and in Naval service. They actually complement each other as the Bucc is the heavy hitter with the better low level strike ability. The buccaneers direct US counterpart was the Intruder which the Bucc actually competed against for the USN order.

Don't forget Jag was only supposed to be an advanced trainer originally, just it was a little too advanced for training new pilots and the aircraft changed to more of a hunter replacement instead.

Not sure about Naval strike as a twin engine, two crew is the preffered option for over water operations.

Should look good when they are done however. You can always do other NATO users with the F104 replaced by a more suitable low level strike aircraft  leaving the Starfighters for interceptor roles only instead.

Cheers

G B)  

Scooterman

#4
Quote2 x seat Gulf pink version in a Wild Weasel configuration. ^_^
Hmmm, I have a TA-7C conversion and the decals.  ALARMs anybody?

Roger the Cabin Boy Again

"The buccaneers direct US counterpart was the Intruder which the Bucc actually competed against for the USN order."

Oooo... USN / USMC Bucc...  Ooooo...

Back to thread...  

Raspberry Ripple Boscombe Down trials Corsair with assorted odd protruberances, LERX and nasty weapons?  

Falklands Air Defence Corsair?


Buccaneers and Corsairs.   Nice combination.  Arr Jim Lad.

:ar:

elmayerle

QuoteAnniversary markings always look good....ExtraDecal do lots.

also, why retire after the Gulf War? The Jaguar is still operating if only in now disgracefully tiny numbers.
I believe the US engine (TF-30)?? was derived from the Spey so a direct use of Spey wouldn't have been too far fetched?

A nice dirty grey one with lots of stores over Bosnia?

Oh, and you've just GOT to keep a gun! :rolleyes:
TF30 was a P&W design and saying it was "doggy" is an insult to canines worldwide.  The USAF, followed by the USN, had the great good sense to replace it with the TF41 which was/is a derivative of the Spey, but a later version than what produced the engines used in British Phantoms.  Pity the Allison/RR development work wasn't followed up with a fully re-heated variant.  It would've produced an adequate replacement engine for the F-14 well before the F101DFE could've matured into the F110.  I'm considering a joint FAA/Aeronavale testbed re-engining the F-14 with afterburning derivatives of the TF41 as a joint RR/Allison/SNECMA collaboration.
"Reality is the leading cause of stress amongst those in touch with it."
--Jane Wagner and Lily Tomlin

Jeffry Fontaine

#7
QuoteOh, and you've just GOT to keep a gun!
If the gun is to be retained on the UK version of the A-7, why not make it a 30mm ADEN to provide a commonality with the Jaguar, Harrier, and other aircraft?  The plus side is that it packs a lot more oooomph for each round fired which is always a good thing. 
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elmayerle

At worst, delete only one of the guns on the "A".  For the "E", I'd say to keep the gun since there are other places to put the laser pod et al.  'Sides, a gun is almost a necessity for an attack bird.
"Reality is the leading cause of stress amongst those in touch with it."
--Jane Wagner and Lily Tomlin

gooberliberation

QuoteFalklands Air Defence Corsair?
Howabout overall dark sea gray like seen on some sea harriers?
================================
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P1127

This was one of my first 'What Ifs' 20 years ago (after the pre-Falklands Sea Jaguar FRS1 - SHar nose fits quite well!).

My postulation was that France cancelled the Jaguar, and instead tried to sell the British attack versions of the Mirage F1. Britain scrapped that plan and bought A7Es instead (RF compatability). The same senario can introduce the F-5E into RAF service!
It's not an effing  jump jet.

lancer

Quote
QuoteFalklands Air Defence Corsair?
Howabout overall dark sea gray like seen on some sea harriers?
Sounds very nice, BUT, theres always a but ain't there....Would the A7 work in the air to air role as it was primarily an air to ground aircraft.
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upnorth

Thanks for the ideas folks.

The idea of Aden cannons is appealing, so I might make that mod if I go for this project.

I think I'll stay with my idea of 5 sqn markings as I have them easily on hand. Anyway, last I heard (in reality) 5 sqn is out of the interceptor business and is planned to be the operator of a new bird called the R.1 Sentinel which I've heard is some sort of ECM bird based on the Canadair Challenger biz jet.

Good to hear I can just leave the engine as kit stock and call it good.

Last night I thought about doing her up in the winter camo, with the green overpainted with white.

Thanks for the ideas folks, keep em' coming if you get more.

Radish

Let's remember the RNZAF ones in wraparound Cream, Tan and grey as used in the Gulf War. :wacko:  
Once you've visited the land of the Loonies, a return is never far away.....

Still His (or Her) Majesty, Queen Caroline of the Midlands, Resident Drag Queen

XV107

A few thoughts:

First, the background -As Thorvic says, it seems more likely that the Corsair would have been a replacement for the Jaguar, rather than the Buccaneer: don't forget that many of the Buccaneers that served with the RAF were ex-RN airframes, so they were there anyway.

If you look at the timing, obtaining the A-7 on a similar basis to the F-4 isn't beyond the realms of possibility.

You could keep the gun - since the RAF Phantoms had the SUU-23, it makes a lot of sense for the A-7E to retain the Vulcan for logisitc reasons. Given that the RAF would most likely have used the Corsair for ground attack as well as strike, a gun for strafing makes a great deal of sense.

As for the loadouts proposed - You wouldn't need a data link for Sea Eagle. If the A-7 was cleared to launch Harpoon (I can't remember if it was off the top of my head), then it ought to have the ability to launch Sea Eagle without any need for a pod (if not, a radar pod, perhaps?).

BL755 is an obvious choice - but how about a TER with SNEB rocket pods? Widely used by the Harrier force, seen on RAF Phantoms, so a likely load out. If you had enough, a four pylon load out of ten pods would be an interesting sight... (I suspect that the inner pylon TER wouldn't have been able to mount a pod on the mounting point nearest the fuselage, so you'd have four pods on the inner pylon and six on the middle or outer pylons). If you want to go the whole hog, then a load out of three TERs per wing with eight SNEB pods per wing.....

I'd also suggest considering the British 1000lb bomb as another possibile weapon. Often seen on Jaguars, so why not Corsairs?

I agree that 5 Squadron is a slightly unlikely marking since it was flying Lightnings at the time - but hey, this is a 'what if'...