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Go Back   Armchair General and HistoryNet >> The Best Forums in History > Historical Events & Eras > Weapons of War > Air Power

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Air Power A place to discuss the implements of War in the Air!

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  #1  
Old 29 Sep 17, 01:48
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Best Fighter of the 20' Century.

What do you think? My nod goes to the F-15. Never a single combat loss.
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  #2  
Old 29 Sep 17, 03:06
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Hard to choose just one.

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Old 29 Sep 17, 03:38
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Best in what way. In terms of air to air kill to loss it is the F16 but it not the best.
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Old 29 Sep 17, 11:55
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Depends on the criteria.
The purest definition of a fighter is an aircraft designed to engage other fighters (fighter-bombers).
Then the F-15C and the F-22 are likely the best fighters.
The Sukhoi series (27 and further) would be a strong contender, but they have hardly seen combat, so it doesn't have the record of the F-15.

If you define a fighter as an aircraft that excels at the main basic tasks of an Air Force, then you might call the F-16, F-18, and possibly a few other types very well the best. Jacks of all trades are (slightly) less sexy than the F-15, but air-to-ground will help win a ground war better than air-to-air.

The greatest fighter ever, of course, is the F-4 Phantom.
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Old 29 Sep 17, 18:29
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The 20th Century... how about the Sopwith Camel ?
Saw more action than all the other nominees put together.
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  #6  
Old 29 Sep 17, 19:26
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Fokker (various), Camel, Spitfire, Mustang, Phantom, F-15, F-16, Typhoon? That's just the West, and misses loads of great designs.

The time period is simply too large.
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Old 30 Sep 17, 14:55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bwaha View Post
What do you think? My nod goes to the F-15. Never a single combat loss.
If Egyptians had operatored the F-15 and the Israelis mig 23 you would have seen the mig trounce the eagle

Modern air combat is so complicated that it is hard to do a one-on-one comparison between fighter planes

Plus different fighter planes are optimized for different environment.
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Old 30 Sep 17, 15:47
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For me it would be the F-14 Tomcat, F/A18 Hornet, the F-15 Eagle as well as the F-16 for the U.S.A..
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Old 30 Sep 17, 17:42
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Originally Posted by Merkava188 View Post
For me it would be the F-14 Tomcat, F/A18 Hornet, the F-15 Eagle as well as the F-16 for the U.S.A..
hard to make a better Navy fighter than a USAF fighter--yes? have worry about landing gear for deck landing, hook, sea corrosion, catapult gear and take-off forces involved, etc.....
..what else? swing wing for landing?
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  #10  
Old 30 Sep 17, 18:51
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It is easier to use a Navy Fighter in the Air Force than to convert an Air Force Fighter to land on carriers. The F-4 Phantom II is an example.

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  #11  
Old 30 Sep 17, 21:42
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That's true. In fact before the U.S. Navy bought the Tomcat ad the Hornet there were plans to develop carrier based variants of the F-15 and F-16 as well as the Sepecat Jaguar (another favorite of mine).
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Old 01 Oct 17, 16:26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Merkava188 View Post
That's true. In fact before the U.S. Navy bought the Tomcat ad the Hornet there were plans to develop carrier based variants of the F-15 and F-16 as well as the Sepecat Jaguar (another favorite of mine).
The F-14 was the direct result of the failure of the F-111B project. The USN wanted the AIM 54 Phoenix missile and a multi-target shoot down capability. The F-14's dogfighting capability was secondary to the mission of fleet defense with long range AAM's.
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Old 02 Oct 17, 09:36
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Originally Posted by T. A. Gardner View Post
The F-14 was the direct result of the failure of the F-111B project. The USN wanted the AIM 54 Phoenix missile and a multi-target shoot down capability. The F-14's dogfighting capability was secondary to the mission of fleet defense with long range AAM's.
and the 54 had a 0% kill rate for the US
and they thought they would not need dogfighting skills in Vietnam because of long range missiles--but they didn't work well at all
early F4s did not have guns for close range
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Old 02 Oct 17, 09:55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bwaha View Post
What do you think? My nod goes to the F-15. Never a single combat loss.
Yeah and I think the F-15's big super-duper 3-ring circus radar has a lot to do with its success, I mean if your radar "eyesight" is better than the other guys, it kinda gives you an edge..
The dear old F-4 Phantom 50 years ago was one of the first planes to show how important a good radar is, I remember playing the wargame "Air Force" and the Phantom could run rings around everything else in the sky because it could see them, but they couldn't see it..
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Old 02 Oct 17, 11:16
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