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USMC to buy UK Harriers

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Less that $1M a piece.... me thinks the Marines just landed one hell of a sweet deal.

 

Craig

 

The 50 Million are just for the spare parts, as the purchase of the aircraft and their engines isn't finalized yet. Then again I doubt that this won't be an issue as keeping the Harriers stored costs money as well.

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What would have been a happier ending is if those Harriers had gone back into RAF Service...

 

True, but at least they wont waste away in some back lot or be chopped up. Think of the FA2s that were at the top of their game and were given up. Imagine if the USMC had stepped up and bought them to suppliment the current AV-8B II+.

 

The article spoke of ripping out the British equipement, but that doesn't make any sense. The GR9s are the most capable ground-attack Harriers, IMO. Their extra hardpoints, plus modern electronics suite. It doesn't make sense to take a step back. Train on that gear and move forward.

 

As for the F/A-18Ds, the USMC should jump on the Super Hornet deal. The F-35B is not a sure thing anymore. They've kept the Deltas limping along waiting on it, but they've run out of time.

 

This is a smart move!

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The problem with using Brit equipment on the planes is logistics. Do we have spares? Do we have techs that know how to repair them? What is their interoperability with the existing USMC equipment? Just because the stuff is good doesn't mean it's practical to use in a new environment.

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If the Brits are as smart as I think, there will be a emergency clause that allows those aircraft to be transferred back to RAF/RN should the need arise, fit to fly. Slap a roundel in place over the stars and bars and you're in business. Hey, it's a thought..........

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The problem with using Brit equipment on the planes is logistics. Do we have spares? Do we have techs that know how to repair them? What is their interoperability with the existing USMC equipment? Just because the stuff is good doesn't mean it's practical to use in a new environment.

 

This means that the engines will have spares. This is probably the single most important part of the Harrier program, (just look at the bird, it's BUILT around the engine), so these souped up birds could provide several parts for the project. The interchangeability of the airframes is of utmost convenience. Maybe the 74 airframes will mean 2-3 reserve squadrons becoming reactivated. This will ensure Harrier longevity, like the article said, into the mid-2020s.

 

Just a couple of years ago, we all thought the Harriers were on the brink of retirement. The F-35 has moved along after delays, but the Harriers are still slated to stick around.

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probably for spare parts.

 

Having been a squadron aircraft maintenance officer at the end of a very, very long supply line - I think this makes a lot of sense. Good move.

 

I rather doubt we'll fly any of them. Would be nice though.

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