Close sidebar

RAAF F-35 caught up in US F-35 delivery suspension

written by australianaviation.com.au | April 26, 2018

The RAAF has so far taken delivery of five F-35As. (Defence)

The Pentagon has stopped taking delivery of F-35 Lightning II fighters from Lockheed Martin, including at least one aircraft for Australia, due to unresolved corrosion issues.
The corrosion reportedly resulted from a known production error in fasteners that hold composite exterior panels to the aircraft’s airframe. The issue was discovered in 2017 during depot maintenance on aircraft delivered to date.
As a result, the JSF Project Office (JPO) has suspended F-35 deliveries until an agreement can be reached with Lockheed Martin on how the cost of repairing the corrosion would be covered. Since the suspension in early April, a US Senate Armed Services Committee hearing heard on April 18 that five F-35 deliveries have been put on hold including three for the US, one for Norway, and one for Australia.
“We are still progressing along with the Joint Program Office on that,” Lockheed Martin Chairman, President and CEO Marillyn Hewson said during an April 24 earnings call.
“It’s just a temporary suspension that they have on accepting some aircraft until we reach agreement on a contractual issue. So, we’re working through that contractual issue with them.
“It’s not affecting production at all, because we continue to produce the F-35. That continues,” she added. “We are confident we’re going to meet our deliveries this year of over 90 aircraft for 2018.”

Steer your own in-flight experience – available on print and digital Whether our classic glossy magazine in your letterbox, daily news updates in your inbox, peeling back a few layers in the podcast or our monthly current affair reports, you can count on us to keep you up to date. Sign up today for just $99.95 for more exclusive offers here. Subscribe now at australianaviation.com.au.

32 Comments

  • Paul

    says:

    It better be resolved because I will be going to Willy later this year!!

  • Chris Grealy

    says:

    Brand new aircraft. Unresolved corrosion issues. There’s a “contractual issue”, otherwise known as “Who’s going to pay for it”? Deliveries suspended indefinitely. All of this and it’s still not combat worthy. Is this the new normal?

  • Geoffrey

    says:

    In Australia .. the product is called a lemon .. this one is a very expensive lemon .. . Hahaha!!

  • Harry

    says:

    Knowing LM, they’ll just keep building them w/out fixing the problem first

  • Breeder

    says:

    As i have been saying to the objections of others this plane is junk!

  • Simon

    says:

    You’re kidding right?
    LM is PAID to produce the aircraft. They haven’t done that properly, there’s a corrosion problem in a brand new aircraft and there’s disagreement over who’s going to pay for it?
    How about the US government grow a pair and tells LM to fix THEIR poor production methods.

  • Jaesson Gee

    says:

    I suppose we have the quirks out of the airplane, but isn’t it time to start asking ‘is it worth it.’ I mean all it’s got going for it is stealth.The performance of the f-35 is at best lackluster. Maybe we should start looking at the European market at something like the Rafael or some such thing. Something thats already approved operationally and we know can do the job. And don’t get me on started one engine verses two engine comparisons . We all know having two engines means you get to fight again another day where as a single engine means you waste an aircraft every time you get an engine failure. We’ve got to get out of this airforce that looks good on paper but operationally is ill equipped for our Asia Pacific sector .

  • mike9

    says:

    Senate Appropriations has described it as ” not meeting any of it’s intended performance or intended service goals” they had one almost crash land in Japan on it’s first overseas deployment. now apparently , the problems are so bad that they have been made secret.
    A we really going to persist with this monumental dud? yes probably , It’s all the way with the USA .

  • Dazza

    says:

    What’s the alternative to buying such an expensive and advanced aircraft? We can’t even build decide that submarines!! Sure there are going to be issues along the way. We have a lot of coastline to defend and we have no aircraft carriers. Can,t we at least have decient fighter aircraft without the wingers who have no idea about their complaints.

  • jasonp

    says:

    Who knew we had all these experts who know everything there is to know about LM and about building 5th gen combat aircraft? You should all be working for the JPO and negotiating this impasse for them! *eyeroll*

  • Chris Crowther

    says:

    We should have bought The new sukoi aircraft and would be flying them five yrs ago. Even the older Sukoi’s would be better than the jsf.
    At least they can still be used in close quarter combat.

  • John Ryalna

    says:

    The issue with the F,35 is who covers the rectification costs. The Collins class submarines had teething problems which were ironed out so that became effective naval platforms.

  • Ian Nance

    says:

    What has happened to the US derived production concept of Total Quality Management? A fault in production led to corrosion, therefore that fault needs to be rectified. By the manufacturer, not customer.

  • George

    says:

    Australia is wealthy and smart enough to design and purpose build its own Aircraft. It’s done in Europe by smaller less wealthy countries. So put your heads on and think about that. Supply of parts and people to maintain here on our own soil……,,!Mmmmm

    • Mick

      says:

      How do you think we got our 75 F/A 18 hornets. We bought one plane and the rights to make more (with a jig). Wish we could do that, but we don’t even make f**king cars anymore in this country.

  • Treb Retosf

    says:

    This aircraft is built in the same facility that brought that other great single aircraft type to do all roles; the TFX (eventually the F-111).
    It is old General Dynamics, now LM Fort Worth all over again, promise the world and eventually maybe deliver a product that doesn’t do quite what the brochures said back when it was bought…….
    What happened to ‘twin engined combat survivability’? A simple birdstrike could take it out like so many F-16’s have suffered.

  • Graz

    says:

    Australia should by 150 f18 C’s. It would get these for the same price as 75 f35s and it should get another squadron of growlers too. We would still be linked to US Navy and it would be good risk mitigation strategy.

  • Paul

    says:

    Graz, did u say F-18cs?

  • Breeder

    says:

    Tony Abbotts commitment of Aust to this hiddiously expensive junk jet and its real costs should be an election issue.

  • Paul

    says:

    I was actually sitting on the fence for a long time about this program, but changed my mind and thought yes it’s a goer. But now should I jump back up on the fence? hhmmmm. Get it together LM!!

  • Anthony Tolhurst

    says:

    Over expectation of the realms of possibility is what has resulted in this sci-fi JSF35 Tie Fighter. Many of the advanced technologies are quite successful in their own right, but stuffing them all into a single engined untried airframe and not anticipating development stoppages down the road is just plain unrealistic. Hence the low rate production programme. LM and the air forces require flyable airframes to integrate and test, and in some ways “design on the fly”. All in all, an extremely complex strategy to synergise emerging tech, and thus create a future/istic machine that everyone expects. C’mon, “STAR WARS” was 40 years ago, and really, we’re just scientifically following science fiction! Remember Dick Tracey’s watch?

  • Raymond

    says:

    The collective “wisdom” in comment sections, such as that displayed here, about subject matter that very little is actually, truly known about by people who think they somehow know better, is incredible.
    The US (USAF, USN & USMC), the UK (RAF & RN), Italy, the Netherlands, Australia, Denmark, Norway, Turkey, Israel, Japan and South Korea, and potentially Canada and Singapore (so far) – first-rate services – are all wrong and stupidly risking their air power for decades to come, are they?
    The F-35s Red Flag kill ratio is a very promising indicator of just how effective it will be.
    Those who believe that “all it has going for it is stealth” have a poor understanding of what 5th gen actually comprises, of which sensor fusion is another very important characteristic. Furthermore, the F-35 is a great force multiplier by dramatically improving the effectiveness and survivability of older generation aircraft integrated into the force package.
    Rafael? That’s an Israeli company, not a French fighter.
    Sukoi? I think you mean Sukhoi. In RAAF service? The idea is a joke, for various reasons. Similar to the joke that is people commenting that are unable to even spell the name of the product or string proper sentences together about what they believe is the supposed panacea.
    There are many misconceptions surrounding the F-35 out there. Yes, there are problems and it’s taken a while. The truth is, the F-35 is now achieving great milestones and it has been comprehensively proven that there is no other aircraft available better suited to the RAAF.

  • Harry

    says:

    As I said in a previous post:
    the ‘development and demonstration’ phase, after 11 years, has been announced as finished. Concurrency development is over. BUT. Now it “will now move into operational test and evaluation conducted by the Pentagon’s independent testing office” – the DOT&E. Thats were they, the DOT&E, test the plane to actual combat conditions. This will be way more rigorous than any tests that may or may not have gone easy on the f-35… This is the organisation that has been scathing of the F-35 development over the years and recently highlighted 200+ significant issues with the F-35. The F-35 cannot enter FRP until the DOT&E gives it the OK.
    The DOT&E have been ripping this plane to shreds in its criticism of all its faults and performance benchmarks not met over years now. It will never enter FRP at this rate,…

  • Paul

    says:

    Raymond, I agree with you on a lot of your comments, it has unbelievable tech in it, sensor fusion and stealth. To the people who can’t spell their preferred aircraft. To people who think buying Russian hardware, are you SERIOUS!!?? They are the most overrated pieces of crap you can buy., do you ever think the RAAF would go down this path? think again. The only way forward is 5th gen. Yes we know all the governments that are buying it know a lot more than us. But the problems that keep coming up are alarming to say the least. Raymond, let people have their say, you might not agree but so be it. The USN still will be operating the super ( by then advanced super with still more mods on top of that in the coming years) so once our F-35s arrive by December this year as said and planned, I will be sold. If there is a delay in that, then I will go off my head totally. Everyone has a right to be critical of this program until everything is delivered on time and no more EXCUSES!!!!

  • Paul

    says:

    Raymond, the red flag kill ratio was done against blk10-20 F-16s, so a bit one sided there. Personally I don’t believe this happened, it just doesn’t sound right and sounds like a LM gimmick or PR disinformation to me. I could be wrong but I could be right!

  • walter Parth

    says:

    The f35 far exceeds capibilities in every area and combines tactile overlay of the airspace and battle field and more information in one aircraft than most nations radar and intelligence stations combined.
    It’s computer intelligence manages it’s flight capibilities and handling and learns hence the early baby steps but will mature to anticipate, assist and out preform the pilot which it is starting to mature and do now.
    It’s an aircraft of extreme advanced technology thats been developed for the first time and targeted for comtempt by jealous nations and its tech stolen.
    The f22 has more reach and better intercepting but the f35 will be more nimble and all round dominating fighter.

  • Paul

    says:

    Walter, we know of some of the breaches of tech theft, but has all of its tech been stolen? Cheers!

  • Sam

    says:

    Should just buy More Super hornets. Upgrade them to Block III and wait till Gen 6 aircraft which is only 10 or so years away. The supers can do till then. F-35 is a piece of junk.

  • Trogdor

    says:

    I love how every time the F-35 is mentioned, someone inevitably comments that we should “just buy Su-35s”
    …and it probably sounds like a great idea too – right up until the point we use them in some action that Russia disagrees with, and then it’s “no spare parts for you”.

  • David

    says:

    This is nothing new…
    I am old enough to remember the joke about the F-111 when they had the hinge issue before they were delayed for years…
    “What is the cheapest way to get an F-111? Buy a block of land and wait for it…”
    That was then when ‘everybody’ just knew that the F-111 was an overpriced over-spec’d POS… and look how they turned out.
    This is a minor issue – Lets give it time.

  • PAUL

    says:

    Ah the lowly metal fastener prone to corrode.., nothing new really, but hopefully technology can improve.
    All new Aircraft designs suffer bugs & have development issues & then develop operational issues, some a lot more complex than just rusty rivets. The A4 had gun & Refuel probe issues, F4 had no gun! F14 engine issues likewise for F111, F15 afterburner nozzle issues, F16 engine trim issues, F18 ECS issues, there’s always something somewhere. Also how is it operated & where? how well is something serviced & maintained. & on that final note forget Russian Aircraft, as my ex Mig29 engineer buddy is always telling me…..

  • Johnson Bruce

    says:

    Gee there are a lot of experts here.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

RAAF F-35 caught up in US F-35 delivery suspension

written by australianaviation.com.au | April 26, 2018

The RAAF has so far taken delivery of five F-35As. (Defence)

The Pentagon has stopped taking delivery of F-35 Lightning II fighters from Lockheed Martin, including at least one aircraft for Australia, due to unresolved corrosion issues.
The corrosion reportedly resulted from a known production error in fasteners that hold composite exterior panels to the aircraft’s airframe. The issue was discovered in 2017 during depot maintenance on aircraft delivered to date.
As a result, the JSF Project Office (JPO) has suspended F-35 deliveries until an agreement can be reached with Lockheed Martin on how the cost of repairing the corrosion would be covered. Since the suspension in early April, a US Senate Armed Services Committee hearing heard on April 18 that five F-35 deliveries have been put on hold including three for the US, one for Norway, and one for Australia.
“We are still progressing along with the Joint Program Office on that,” Lockheed Martin Chairman, President and CEO Marillyn Hewson said during an April 24 earnings call.
“It’s just a temporary suspension that they have on accepting some aircraft until we reach agreement on a contractual issue. So, we’re working through that contractual issue with them.
“It’s not affecting production at all, because we continue to produce the F-35. That continues,” she added. “We are confident we’re going to meet our deliveries this year of over 90 aircraft for 2018.”

Steer your own in-flight experience – available on print and digital Whether our classic glossy magazine in your letterbox, daily news updates in your inbox, peeling back a few layers in the podcast or our monthly current affair reports, you can count on us to keep you up to date. Sign up today for just $99.95 for more exclusive offers here. Subscribe now at australianaviation.com.au.

32 Comments

  • Paul

    says:

    It better be resolved because I will be going to Willy later this year!!

  • Chris Grealy

    says:

    Brand new aircraft. Unresolved corrosion issues. There’s a “contractual issue”, otherwise known as “Who’s going to pay for it”? Deliveries suspended indefinitely. All of this and it’s still not combat worthy. Is this the new normal?

  • Geoffrey

    says:

    In Australia .. the product is called a lemon .. this one is a very expensive lemon .. . Hahaha!!

  • Harry

    says:

    Knowing LM, they’ll just keep building them w/out fixing the problem first

  • Breeder

    says:

    As i have been saying to the objections of others this plane is junk!

  • Simon

    says:

    You’re kidding right?
    LM is PAID to produce the aircraft. They haven’t done that properly, there’s a corrosion problem in a brand new aircraft and there’s disagreement over who’s going to pay for it?
    How about the US government grow a pair and tells LM to fix THEIR poor production methods.

  • Jaesson Gee

    says:

    I suppose we have the quirks out of the airplane, but isn’t it time to start asking ‘is it worth it.’ I mean all it’s got going for it is stealth.The performance of the f-35 is at best lackluster. Maybe we should start looking at the European market at something like the Rafael or some such thing. Something thats already approved operationally and we know can do the job. And don’t get me on started one engine verses two engine comparisons . We all know having two engines means you get to fight again another day where as a single engine means you waste an aircraft every time you get an engine failure. We’ve got to get out of this airforce that looks good on paper but operationally is ill equipped for our Asia Pacific sector .

  • mike9

    says:

    Senate Appropriations has described it as ” not meeting any of it’s intended performance or intended service goals” they had one almost crash land in Japan on it’s first overseas deployment. now apparently , the problems are so bad that they have been made secret.
    A we really going to persist with this monumental dud? yes probably , It’s all the way with the USA .

  • Dazza

    says:

    What’s the alternative to buying such an expensive and advanced aircraft? We can’t even build decide that submarines!! Sure there are going to be issues along the way. We have a lot of coastline to defend and we have no aircraft carriers. Can,t we at least have decient fighter aircraft without the wingers who have no idea about their complaints.

  • jasonp

    says:

    Who knew we had all these experts who know everything there is to know about LM and about building 5th gen combat aircraft? You should all be working for the JPO and negotiating this impasse for them! *eyeroll*

  • Chris Crowther

    says:

    We should have bought The new sukoi aircraft and would be flying them five yrs ago. Even the older Sukoi’s would be better than the jsf.
    At least they can still be used in close quarter combat.

  • John Ryalna

    says:

    The issue with the F,35 is who covers the rectification costs. The Collins class submarines had teething problems which were ironed out so that became effective naval platforms.

  • Ian Nance

    says:

    What has happened to the US derived production concept of Total Quality Management? A fault in production led to corrosion, therefore that fault needs to be rectified. By the manufacturer, not customer.

  • George

    says:

    Australia is wealthy and smart enough to design and purpose build its own Aircraft. It’s done in Europe by smaller less wealthy countries. So put your heads on and think about that. Supply of parts and people to maintain here on our own soil……,,!Mmmmm

    • Mick

      says:

      How do you think we got our 75 F/A 18 hornets. We bought one plane and the rights to make more (with a jig). Wish we could do that, but we don’t even make f**king cars anymore in this country.

  • Treb Retosf

    says:

    This aircraft is built in the same facility that brought that other great single aircraft type to do all roles; the TFX (eventually the F-111).
    It is old General Dynamics, now LM Fort Worth all over again, promise the world and eventually maybe deliver a product that doesn’t do quite what the brochures said back when it was bought…….
    What happened to ‘twin engined combat survivability’? A simple birdstrike could take it out like so many F-16’s have suffered.

  • Graz

    says:

    Australia should by 150 f18 C’s. It would get these for the same price as 75 f35s and it should get another squadron of growlers too. We would still be linked to US Navy and it would be good risk mitigation strategy.

  • Paul

    says:

    Graz, did u say F-18cs?

  • Breeder

    says:

    Tony Abbotts commitment of Aust to this hiddiously expensive junk jet and its real costs should be an election issue.

  • Paul

    says:

    I was actually sitting on the fence for a long time about this program, but changed my mind and thought yes it’s a goer. But now should I jump back up on the fence? hhmmmm. Get it together LM!!

  • Anthony Tolhurst

    says:

    Over expectation of the realms of possibility is what has resulted in this sci-fi JSF35 Tie Fighter. Many of the advanced technologies are quite successful in their own right, but stuffing them all into a single engined untried airframe and not anticipating development stoppages down the road is just plain unrealistic. Hence the low rate production programme. LM and the air forces require flyable airframes to integrate and test, and in some ways “design on the fly”. All in all, an extremely complex strategy to synergise emerging tech, and thus create a future/istic machine that everyone expects. C’mon, “STAR WARS” was 40 years ago, and really, we’re just scientifically following science fiction! Remember Dick Tracey’s watch?

  • Raymond

    says:

    The collective “wisdom” in comment sections, such as that displayed here, about subject matter that very little is actually, truly known about by people who think they somehow know better, is incredible.
    The US (USAF, USN & USMC), the UK (RAF & RN), Italy, the Netherlands, Australia, Denmark, Norway, Turkey, Israel, Japan and South Korea, and potentially Canada and Singapore (so far) – first-rate services – are all wrong and stupidly risking their air power for decades to come, are they?
    The F-35s Red Flag kill ratio is a very promising indicator of just how effective it will be.
    Those who believe that “all it has going for it is stealth” have a poor understanding of what 5th gen actually comprises, of which sensor fusion is another very important characteristic. Furthermore, the F-35 is a great force multiplier by dramatically improving the effectiveness and survivability of older generation aircraft integrated into the force package.
    Rafael? That’s an Israeli company, not a French fighter.
    Sukoi? I think you mean Sukhoi. In RAAF service? The idea is a joke, for various reasons. Similar to the joke that is people commenting that are unable to even spell the name of the product or string proper sentences together about what they believe is the supposed panacea.
    There are many misconceptions surrounding the F-35 out there. Yes, there are problems and it’s taken a while. The truth is, the F-35 is now achieving great milestones and it has been comprehensively proven that there is no other aircraft available better suited to the RAAF.

  • Harry

    says:

    As I said in a previous post:
    the ‘development and demonstration’ phase, after 11 years, has been announced as finished. Concurrency development is over. BUT. Now it “will now move into operational test and evaluation conducted by the Pentagon’s independent testing office” – the DOT&E. Thats were they, the DOT&E, test the plane to actual combat conditions. This will be way more rigorous than any tests that may or may not have gone easy on the f-35… This is the organisation that has been scathing of the F-35 development over the years and recently highlighted 200+ significant issues with the F-35. The F-35 cannot enter FRP until the DOT&E gives it the OK.
    The DOT&E have been ripping this plane to shreds in its criticism of all its faults and performance benchmarks not met over years now. It will never enter FRP at this rate,…

  • Paul

    says:

    Raymond, I agree with you on a lot of your comments, it has unbelievable tech in it, sensor fusion and stealth. To the people who can’t spell their preferred aircraft. To people who think buying Russian hardware, are you SERIOUS!!?? They are the most overrated pieces of crap you can buy., do you ever think the RAAF would go down this path? think again. The only way forward is 5th gen. Yes we know all the governments that are buying it know a lot more than us. But the problems that keep coming up are alarming to say the least. Raymond, let people have their say, you might not agree but so be it. The USN still will be operating the super ( by then advanced super with still more mods on top of that in the coming years) so once our F-35s arrive by December this year as said and planned, I will be sold. If there is a delay in that, then I will go off my head totally. Everyone has a right to be critical of this program until everything is delivered on time and no more EXCUSES!!!!

  • Paul

    says:

    Raymond, the red flag kill ratio was done against blk10-20 F-16s, so a bit one sided there. Personally I don’t believe this happened, it just doesn’t sound right and sounds like a LM gimmick or PR disinformation to me. I could be wrong but I could be right!

  • walter Parth

    says:

    The f35 far exceeds capibilities in every area and combines tactile overlay of the airspace and battle field and more information in one aircraft than most nations radar and intelligence stations combined.
    It’s computer intelligence manages it’s flight capibilities and handling and learns hence the early baby steps but will mature to anticipate, assist and out preform the pilot which it is starting to mature and do now.
    It’s an aircraft of extreme advanced technology thats been developed for the first time and targeted for comtempt by jealous nations and its tech stolen.
    The f22 has more reach and better intercepting but the f35 will be more nimble and all round dominating fighter.

  • Paul

    says:

    Walter, we know of some of the breaches of tech theft, but has all of its tech been stolen? Cheers!

  • Sam

    says:

    Should just buy More Super hornets. Upgrade them to Block III and wait till Gen 6 aircraft which is only 10 or so years away. The supers can do till then. F-35 is a piece of junk.

  • Trogdor

    says:

    I love how every time the F-35 is mentioned, someone inevitably comments that we should “just buy Su-35s”
    …and it probably sounds like a great idea too – right up until the point we use them in some action that Russia disagrees with, and then it’s “no spare parts for you”.

  • David

    says:

    This is nothing new…
    I am old enough to remember the joke about the F-111 when they had the hinge issue before they were delayed for years…
    “What is the cheapest way to get an F-111? Buy a block of land and wait for it…”
    That was then when ‘everybody’ just knew that the F-111 was an overpriced over-spec’d POS… and look how they turned out.
    This is a minor issue – Lets give it time.

  • PAUL

    says:

    Ah the lowly metal fastener prone to corrode.., nothing new really, but hopefully technology can improve.
    All new Aircraft designs suffer bugs & have development issues & then develop operational issues, some a lot more complex than just rusty rivets. The A4 had gun & Refuel probe issues, F4 had no gun! F14 engine issues likewise for F111, F15 afterburner nozzle issues, F16 engine trim issues, F18 ECS issues, there’s always something somewhere. Also how is it operated & where? how well is something serviced & maintained. & on that final note forget Russian Aircraft, as my ex Mig29 engineer buddy is always telling me…..

  • Johnson Bruce

    says:

    Gee there are a lot of experts here.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

RAAF F-35 caught up in US F-35 delivery suspension

written by australianaviation.com.au | April 26, 2018

The RAAF has so far taken delivery of five F-35As. (Defence)

The Pentagon has stopped taking delivery of F-35 Lightning II fighters from Lockheed Martin, including at least one aircraft for Australia, due to unresolved corrosion issues.
The corrosion reportedly resulted from a known production error in fasteners that hold composite exterior panels to the aircraft’s airframe. The issue was discovered in 2017 during depot maintenance on aircraft delivered to date.
As a result, the JSF Project Office (JPO) has suspended F-35 deliveries until an agreement can be reached with Lockheed Martin on how the cost of repairing the corrosion would be covered. Since the suspension in early April, a US Senate Armed Services Committee hearing heard on April 18 that five F-35 deliveries have been put on hold including three for the US, one for Norway, and one for Australia.
“We are still progressing along with the Joint Program Office on that,” Lockheed Martin Chairman, President and CEO Marillyn Hewson said during an April 24 earnings call.
“It’s just a temporary suspension that they have on accepting some aircraft until we reach agreement on a contractual issue. So, we’re working through that contractual issue with them.
“It’s not affecting production at all, because we continue to produce the F-35. That continues,” she added. “We are confident we’re going to meet our deliveries this year of over 90 aircraft for 2018.”

Steer your own in-flight experience – available on print and digital Whether our classic glossy magazine in your letterbox, daily news updates in your inbox, peeling back a few layers in the podcast or our monthly current affair reports, you can count on us to keep you up to date. Sign up today for just $99.95 for more exclusive offers here. Subscribe now at australianaviation.com.au.

32 Comments

  • Paul

    says:

    It better be resolved because I will be going to Willy later this year!!

  • Chris Grealy

    says:

    Brand new aircraft. Unresolved corrosion issues. There’s a “contractual issue”, otherwise known as “Who’s going to pay for it”? Deliveries suspended indefinitely. All of this and it’s still not combat worthy. Is this the new normal?

  • Geoffrey

    says:

    In Australia .. the product is called a lemon .. this one is a very expensive lemon .. . Hahaha!!

  • Harry

    says:

    Knowing LM, they’ll just keep building them w/out fixing the problem first

  • Breeder

    says:

    As i have been saying to the objections of others this plane is junk!

  • Simon

    says:

    You’re kidding right?
    LM is PAID to produce the aircraft. They haven’t done that properly, there’s a corrosion problem in a brand new aircraft and there’s disagreement over who’s going to pay for it?
    How about the US government grow a pair and tells LM to fix THEIR poor production methods.

  • Jaesson Gee

    says:

    I suppose we have the quirks out of the airplane, but isn’t it time to start asking ‘is it worth it.’ I mean all it’s got going for it is stealth.The performance of the f-35 is at best lackluster. Maybe we should start looking at the European market at something like the Rafael or some such thing. Something thats already approved operationally and we know can do the job. And don’t get me on started one engine verses two engine comparisons . We all know having two engines means you get to fight again another day where as a single engine means you waste an aircraft every time you get an engine failure. We’ve got to get out of this airforce that looks good on paper but operationally is ill equipped for our Asia Pacific sector .

  • mike9

    says:

    Senate Appropriations has described it as ” not meeting any of it’s intended performance or intended service goals” they had one almost crash land in Japan on it’s first overseas deployment. now apparently , the problems are so bad that they have been made secret.
    A we really going to persist with this monumental dud? yes probably , It’s all the way with the USA .

  • Dazza

    says:

    What’s the alternative to buying such an expensive and advanced aircraft? We can’t even build decide that submarines!! Sure there are going to be issues along the way. We have a lot of coastline to defend and we have no aircraft carriers. Can,t we at least have decient fighter aircraft without the wingers who have no idea about their complaints.

  • jasonp

    says:

    Who knew we had all these experts who know everything there is to know about LM and about building 5th gen combat aircraft? You should all be working for the JPO and negotiating this impasse for them! *eyeroll*

  • Chris Crowther

    says:

    We should have bought The new sukoi aircraft and would be flying them five yrs ago. Even the older Sukoi’s would be better than the jsf.
    At least they can still be used in close quarter combat.

  • John Ryalna

    says:

    The issue with the F,35 is who covers the rectification costs. The Collins class submarines had teething problems which were ironed out so that became effective naval platforms.

  • Ian Nance

    says:

    What has happened to the US derived production concept of Total Quality Management? A fault in production led to corrosion, therefore that fault needs to be rectified. By the manufacturer, not customer.

  • George

    says:

    Australia is wealthy and smart enough to design and purpose build its own Aircraft. It’s done in Europe by smaller less wealthy countries. So put your heads on and think about that. Supply of parts and people to maintain here on our own soil……,,!Mmmmm

    • Mick

      says:

      How do you think we got our 75 F/A 18 hornets. We bought one plane and the rights to make more (with a jig). Wish we could do that, but we don’t even make f**king cars anymore in this country.

  • Treb Retosf

    says:

    This aircraft is built in the same facility that brought that other great single aircraft type to do all roles; the TFX (eventually the F-111).
    It is old General Dynamics, now LM Fort Worth all over again, promise the world and eventually maybe deliver a product that doesn’t do quite what the brochures said back when it was bought…….
    What happened to ‘twin engined combat survivability’? A simple birdstrike could take it out like so many F-16’s have suffered.

  • Graz

    says:

    Australia should by 150 f18 C’s. It would get these for the same price as 75 f35s and it should get another squadron of growlers too. We would still be linked to US Navy and it would be good risk mitigation strategy.

  • Paul

    says:

    Graz, did u say F-18cs?

  • Breeder

    says:

    Tony Abbotts commitment of Aust to this hiddiously expensive junk jet and its real costs should be an election issue.

  • Paul

    says:

    I was actually sitting on the fence for a long time about this program, but changed my mind and thought yes it’s a goer. But now should I jump back up on the fence? hhmmmm. Get it together LM!!

  • Anthony Tolhurst

    says:

    Over expectation of the realms of possibility is what has resulted in this sci-fi JSF35 Tie Fighter. Many of the advanced technologies are quite successful in their own right, but stuffing them all into a single engined untried airframe and not anticipating development stoppages down the road is just plain unrealistic. Hence the low rate production programme. LM and the air forces require flyable airframes to integrate and test, and in some ways “design on the fly”. All in all, an extremely complex strategy to synergise emerging tech, and thus create a future/istic machine that everyone expects. C’mon, “STAR WARS” was 40 years ago, and really, we’re just scientifically following science fiction! Remember Dick Tracey’s watch?

  • Raymond

    says:

    The collective “wisdom” in comment sections, such as that displayed here, about subject matter that very little is actually, truly known about by people who think they somehow know better, is incredible.
    The US (USAF, USN & USMC), the UK (RAF & RN), Italy, the Netherlands, Australia, Denmark, Norway, Turkey, Israel, Japan and South Korea, and potentially Canada and Singapore (so far) – first-rate services – are all wrong and stupidly risking their air power for decades to come, are they?
    The F-35s Red Flag kill ratio is a very promising indicator of just how effective it will be.
    Those who believe that “all it has going for it is stealth” have a poor understanding of what 5th gen actually comprises, of which sensor fusion is another very important characteristic. Furthermore, the F-35 is a great force multiplier by dramatically improving the effectiveness and survivability of older generation aircraft integrated into the force package.
    Rafael? That’s an Israeli company, not a French fighter.
    Sukoi? I think you mean Sukhoi. In RAAF service? The idea is a joke, for various reasons. Similar to the joke that is people commenting that are unable to even spell the name of the product or string proper sentences together about what they believe is the supposed panacea.
    There are many misconceptions surrounding the F-35 out there. Yes, there are problems and it’s taken a while. The truth is, the F-35 is now achieving great milestones and it has been comprehensively proven that there is no other aircraft available better suited to the RAAF.

  • Harry

    says:

    As I said in a previous post:
    the ‘development and demonstration’ phase, after 11 years, has been announced as finished. Concurrency development is over. BUT. Now it “will now move into operational test and evaluation conducted by the Pentagon’s independent testing office” – the DOT&E. Thats were they, the DOT&E, test the plane to actual combat conditions. This will be way more rigorous than any tests that may or may not have gone easy on the f-35… This is the organisation that has been scathing of the F-35 development over the years and recently highlighted 200+ significant issues with the F-35. The F-35 cannot enter FRP until the DOT&E gives it the OK.
    The DOT&E have been ripping this plane to shreds in its criticism of all its faults and performance benchmarks not met over years now. It will never enter FRP at this rate,…

  • Paul

    says:

    Raymond, I agree with you on a lot of your comments, it has unbelievable tech in it, sensor fusion and stealth. To the people who can’t spell their preferred aircraft. To people who think buying Russian hardware, are you SERIOUS!!?? They are the most overrated pieces of crap you can buy., do you ever think the RAAF would go down this path? think again. The only way forward is 5th gen. Yes we know all the governments that are buying it know a lot more than us. But the problems that keep coming up are alarming to say the least. Raymond, let people have their say, you might not agree but so be it. The USN still will be operating the super ( by then advanced super with still more mods on top of that in the coming years) so once our F-35s arrive by December this year as said and planned, I will be sold. If there is a delay in that, then I will go off my head totally. Everyone has a right to be critical of this program until everything is delivered on time and no more EXCUSES!!!!

  • Paul

    says:

    Raymond, the red flag kill ratio was done against blk10-20 F-16s, so a bit one sided there. Personally I don’t believe this happened, it just doesn’t sound right and sounds like a LM gimmick or PR disinformation to me. I could be wrong but I could be right!

  • walter Parth

    says:

    The f35 far exceeds capibilities in every area and combines tactile overlay of the airspace and battle field and more information in one aircraft than most nations radar and intelligence stations combined.
    It’s computer intelligence manages it’s flight capibilities and handling and learns hence the early baby steps but will mature to anticipate, assist and out preform the pilot which it is starting to mature and do now.
    It’s an aircraft of extreme advanced technology thats been developed for the first time and targeted for comtempt by jealous nations and its tech stolen.
    The f22 has more reach and better intercepting but the f35 will be more nimble and all round dominating fighter.

  • Paul

    says:

    Walter, we know of some of the breaches of tech theft, but has all of its tech been stolen? Cheers!

  • Sam

    says:

    Should just buy More Super hornets. Upgrade them to Block III and wait till Gen 6 aircraft which is only 10 or so years away. The supers can do till then. F-35 is a piece of junk.

  • Trogdor

    says:

    I love how every time the F-35 is mentioned, someone inevitably comments that we should “just buy Su-35s”
    …and it probably sounds like a great idea too – right up until the point we use them in some action that Russia disagrees with, and then it’s “no spare parts for you”.

  • David

    says:

    This is nothing new…
    I am old enough to remember the joke about the F-111 when they had the hinge issue before they were delayed for years…
    “What is the cheapest way to get an F-111? Buy a block of land and wait for it…”
    That was then when ‘everybody’ just knew that the F-111 was an overpriced over-spec’d POS… and look how they turned out.
    This is a minor issue – Lets give it time.

  • PAUL

    says:

    Ah the lowly metal fastener prone to corrode.., nothing new really, but hopefully technology can improve.
    All new Aircraft designs suffer bugs & have development issues & then develop operational issues, some a lot more complex than just rusty rivets. The A4 had gun & Refuel probe issues, F4 had no gun! F14 engine issues likewise for F111, F15 afterburner nozzle issues, F16 engine trim issues, F18 ECS issues, there’s always something somewhere. Also how is it operated & where? how well is something serviced & maintained. & on that final note forget Russian Aircraft, as my ex Mig29 engineer buddy is always telling me…..

  • Johnson Bruce

    says:

    Gee there are a lot of experts here.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Each day, our subscribers are more informed with the right information.

SIGN UP to the Australian Aviation magazine for high-quality news and features for just $99.95 per year