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  • Attack helicopters

    Just curious to hear what people have to say/quote about the comparative virtues of:
    AH-1
    AH-64
    Tiger
    Roovaik
    A129 Mongoose
    Mi-28
    Mi-24
    Ka-50/52

    Work away folks
    "It is a general popular error to imagine that loudest complainers for the public to be the most anxious for it's welfare" Edmund Burke

  • #2
    Presently the Ah-64 is the most advanced attack helo in the world. Despite the recent TV images from the Gulf is is a highly capable attack platform. Imagine a Irish Army Infantry Officer being able to call in a flight of these attack helo's on a Peace Support Operation.

    The latest version the Ah-64 Longbow is the prize jewel in the US Army anti tank weapon systems. With the UK deciding to adopt the Ah-64 over all oter types 3 years ago. Even though the A129 was developed between a UK and Italian consortium.

    For the future it has to be the RAH-66 Comanche designed for scout/attack. The US Army plans to buy 1213 of these $38 billion of the next 20 years.

    "Its low-observable "stealth" design makes it 250 times harder to detect with radar than the Kiowa. Its engine is also twice as quiet as Kiowa."

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    • #3
      The dumbass answer to the simple question is, what version? Most of the aircraft mentioned here are available or have served in many different variants (the Ah-1 and Hind being the best examples) ... heres my (very amateur) take on those listed ...

      AH-1
      In its 'W' version, its a really serious piece of kit. Can use both TOW and Hellfire, retains the M-197 in the nose (only 20mm so of limited use against AFVs). Helmet mounted sight and a good EW suite too. The 'Z' model is even better, and should be a much better performer in terms of its powerplant+Avionics.

      AH-64
      Currently the state of the art. Specially in the D longbow version with the mast mounted MMW radar and associated kit. Very expensive to buy and maintain, but is the best equipped heli out there. If you want to kill tanks ...

      Tiger
      A lighter a/c than the previous two, designed with a different purpose in mind for the French and German armies. Very capable and very well equipped in its AT version (has been adapted to use Hellfire for the Australian contract, which it won). Has a rwr, lwr and plume detector. Doesn't have the absolute performance or equipment level of the Longbow, but it isn't nearly as expensive either.

      Was also in a Bond film with Famke Jansen. Makes it my favourite.


      Rooivalk
      Built around a Puma powerplant/rotor, big, heavy and robust. Well set up, with components/options from all over the place. Can be fitted with indigenous missiles or can use Hellfire also. Really struggling to find a market, although Malaysia has expressed an interest.

      A129 Mongoose
      Similar to the Rooivalk in that it has been struggling to find a market. Was underpowered in original versions, but this has been rectified with the 'International' (buy me, buy me!) model. Again, well equipped and very capable but supposed to be expensive to buy. Has the same gun a the Cobra, and is supposed to have worked out quite well in Somalia.

      Mi-28
      Supposed to be an excellent piece of kit, rugged and fast. Seem to remember this winning a competition for the Swedish Army, beating out all other competitors. No export order yet though.

      Mi-24
      Has so many variants now that its in a class of its own. Really (REALLY) big, (has a cabin for as many as 'eight troops' ... more like four with gear) and heavy, and so is supposed to be a pig to manouver. Doesn't hover well, and doesn't much like turning either. Latest variants have a wide choice of fits, with Israeli, French and Russian gear available. The choice of the third world. Tough as old boots though.

      Ka-50/52
      Looks cool. Hugely well equipped. Except it has never been produced on a large scale and no really knows if it works (Russians have less than 10). Great on paper, and has some spectacular airshow tricks up its sleeves. Rumoured to have seen limited action in Chechnya.

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      • #4
        I believe that the AH-64 D Longbow is not available on the export market because of the radar technololghy contained...

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        • #5
          I thought the Brits were getting the Longbow?
          "The dolphins were monkeys that didn't like the land, walked back to the water, went back from the sand."

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          • #6
            You could be right there, but the US wouldn't give the Longbow Version to Egypt, even though they asked for it on 5 different occasions, nor would they upgrade the present models to Longbow standard.A number of other countries have also been refused the Longbow Version outright including Israel.

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            • #7
              The Israelis might turn around & sell it to China.
              "The dolphins were monkeys that didn't like the land, walked back to the water, went back from the sand."

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              • #8
                Actually, I thought quite a few countries had gotten the Longbow?

                Seem to remember the Netherlands, the UK, Singapore, Israel, Kuwait and Greece all ordering the D model. Heard something about Taiwan and Japan as well.

                Maybe they got the D model without radar?

                Hang on, just did some checking ... the Dutch ones seem to have being delivered without radome, while the UK, Singopore and Japanese (order) are for with radar.
                Last edited by Aidan; 26 March 2003, 16:03.

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                • #9
                  The AH-1W was called up after about a month of the Afghanistan to support army operations not because its better than the Apache, but its takes around 4 hours less for repairs and maintenance and is also alot cheaper to replace parts on.
                  Apparently one apache pilot seeing troops in a desparate situation flew straight into a hail of heavy MG fire and airbursting MGs, he surpressed the enemy but got shot in the process, and the Radome was hit aswell.
                  Good performace but pricey to keep up.

                  The CBT standard A129 that the Italians are upgrading to is supposed to be extremely manouvreable.
                  Two Ka50s were photographed in Chechnya, one of them had previously starred in an action movie called "black shark", apparently they performed vey well but the numbers were too small to make a difference.
                  The Mi-28 also maintains a troop carrying capacity (3) purely for Casevac.
                  Mi-24/35 the new Nato hind operators are all involved in major upgrade programs most are co-operating, the Russians are still struggling to get more Night capable Hinds and Hips into service.

                  Rooivak-apparently the original idea came from the modified AIIIs
                  developed for Rhodesia.

                  Tiger..........Famke Jansen, and cheap and capable.

                  I'd tend to go with the AH-1W though or Z if its affordable.
                  "It is a general popular error to imagine that loudest complainers for the public to be the most anxious for it's welfare" Edmund Burke

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                  • #10
                    The longbow has to manufactered in the country of export, i.e in the UK Westland built the longbows for the RAF and it is the same story with similar export countries expect Israel who get them in already built form
                    Only the dead have seen the end of war - Plato

                    "Where there is no guidance the people fall, but in abundance of counselors there is victory" Proverbs 11-14
                    http://munsterfireandrescue.com

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                    • #11
                      i know this is slightly off topic but was the irish goverment offered the bell ah-1 hueys left behind by the u.s when they fled Veitnam?
                      Over the centuries, mankind has tried many ways of combating the forces of evil...prayer, fasting, good works and so on. Up until Doom, no one seemed to have thought about the double-barrel shotgun. Eat leaden death, demon...

                      http://www.iamawesome.com/

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                      • #12
                        Were those the Huey's that they ended up pushing off their ships due to lack of space onboard ?


                        I reckon the nearest we may get to attack/armed helis in the forseeable future would be something like Augusta A109M's - Can be armed OR used for other missions, unlike dedicated attack helis.
                        IRISH AIR CORPS - Serving the Nation.

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                        • #13
                          Where's that story coming from?
                          Was Ireland supposed to reinvade Vietnam to take possesion of them? Do you not think the Vietnamese would have objected
                          Or are you thinking of the situation where the Germans offered DeValera the British equipment left at Dunkirk if he'd support them?
                          .
                          .
                          .
                          With 50,000 men getting killed a week, who's going to miss a pigeon?

                          Guns don't kill people, bullets kill people.

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                          • #14
                            CQ, I need more time on this, know little about helis' compared to fixed wings, and dropped my a$$ in it enough there by posting from memory rather then reffering to notes.
                            I am writeing to AMARC about F-5's, would you like me to add an inquiry about AH-1 availablity.
                            As I said on ICUN's board, such infomation is no longer available on the internet. I am not holding my breath.
                            "We will hold out until our last bullet is spent. Could do with some whiskey"
                            Radio transmission, siege of Jadotville DR Congo. September 1961.
                            Illegitimi non carborundum

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                            • #15
                              Turkey,

                              The AH-1s at AMARC are AH-1S and J models(and maybe some F and T models also), there are a few hundred there last I checked (on the website, not in person!).

                              These are tired ex US Army/Marine birds, with an equipment and avionics fit left over from the 1970s ... to be useful they'd need a serious refit and probably new engines/rotors. Newest AT weapon qualified for is the TOW.

                              Should be put in a box marked "For emergency use only".

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