Beta

Slashdot: News for Nerds

×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Own Your Own Fighter Jet

samzenpus posted more than 4 years ago | from the only-one-on-the-block dept.

The Military 222

gimmebeer writes "The Russian Sukhoi SU-27 has a top speed of Mach 1.8 (more than 1,300 mph) and has a thrust to weight ratio greater than 1 to 1. That means it can accelerate while climbing straight up. It was designed to fight against the best the US had to offer, and now it can be yours for the price of a mediocre used business jet."

cancel ×

222 comments

WTB: Aircraft Carrier (4, Funny)

Rockoon (1252108) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792186)

So now that I won my own combat jets, anybody got a slightly used aircraft carrier up for sale?

Re:WTB: Aircraft Carrier (2, Interesting)

woody.jesus (1665793) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792238)

There's one in Charleston Harbor ... the USS Yorktown, 'Fighting Lady of WWII'. Still floats. In need of some repair.

Re:WTB: Aircraft Carrier (1)

wjsteele (255130) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792310)

Oh... you just missed it. The Russians sold the one they had under construction to the Chinese.

Bill

Re:WTB: Aircraft Carrier (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792954)

I saw these fly at Farnborough a few years ago. Absolutely beautiful to watch - they showed a manoeuvre where the plan banks to a straight stall, then just stops and hovers. Any pursuing craft flies straight past. It was a bit old then (just there for the display, they weren't selling them), and wasn't much use as a combat manoeuvre anyway because it was introduced in an age when close dogfighting was already largely obsolete, but it looked impressive.

And, since you mention it, while I was there a girl on one of the stands did ask if I wanted an aircraft carrier. It was a bit out of my price range though. She offered me a discount if I bought two, but even then there were a few too many zeros on the end of the number...

Ah HAH! (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792196)

In Soviet Russia, fighter jet owns YOU!

lol (-1, Troll)

Threni (635302) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792216)

judging by the pitiful performances of Russian fighter jets at airshows around the world, it's also capable of flying straight down.

Nothing new (2, Interesting)

GiveBenADollar (1722738) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792224)

I remember a story from almost 10 years back that you could buy a Mig-21 for $14k as is or around $100k restored and made legal. The cost wasn't in the aircraft itself, but the maintenance to keep it flying. Still waiting to get my own F-14.

Re:Nothing new (1)

Nidi62 (1525137) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792342)

Still waiting to get my own F-14.

Good luck with that. You'd have to go to Iran for spare parts, and it'd be impossible to get that through customs.

Re:Nothing new (0)

WED Fan (911325) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792398)

Bull, but nice try at humor. If they were to put surplus F4s on the market, there would also be a glut of spare parts. The F4 is one of the most plentiful in the boneyard.

Re:Nothing new (5, Informative)

Nidi62 (1525137) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792432)

Bull, but nice try at humor. If they were to put surplus F4s on the market, there would also be a glut of spare parts. The F4 is one of the most plentiful in the boneyard.

He said F-14, not F-4. The Tomcat, not the Phantom. The only F-14s still in operation are located in Iran, and they were the sole purchasers of F-14 spare parts after the aircraft was retired in the US. This is why the production and sale of F-14 parts was halted back in 2007.

Re:Nothing new (1)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792578)

Well "in operation" is not confirmed. It is not known if they have the expertise to maintain their fleet even if they had the parts. Officially they are in service with the Iranian air force.

Re:Nothing new (1)

couchslug (175151) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792946)

Maintaining combat aircraft isn't particularly difficult.

Maintaining them without parts is _extremely_ difficult, and requires cannibalizing (cann'ing) parts from the rest of the fleet.

Even the US Air Force has a managed cann program and each squadron normally designates one cann jet. The cann birds are normally brought back up every thirty days by using the next cann bird, which ensures they don't get torn down too far. This continues on deployments, with a cann bird being chosen out of each group deployed. It's quite efficient, but illustrates the difficulty of keeping "spare everything".

FedEx eventually comes to the rescue, praise be to Allah. :)

Re:Nothing new (1)

Kell Bengal (711123) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793082)

I think everybody does this. In my aerorobotics lab we have a 'spares' airframe too. Anything where you can't easily make a replacement gets manufactured in duplicate or triplicate the first time so that when it inevitably breaks, you can just yank one off the spare.

Re:Nothing new (1)

DeusExCalamus (1146781) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792444)

F-4 !=F-14, which is what the GP was referring to

Re:Nothing new (1)

tunapez (1161697) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792582)

Problem is they cannot be operated in US airspace by a private pilot; excepting only when testing repairs or routine maintenance. Saw one a couple weeks back @ DVT. It took off, did 2 touch and go's then landed. That is probably all the flying he'll be doing this year.

Re:Nothing new (1)

Gorobei (127755) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792646)

Yeah, but when you're paying $1/second for flight time, the costs of getting a waiver or finding a friendly source airport don't seem that bad.

Re:Nothing new (2, Interesting)

afabbro (33948) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792756)

Problem is they cannot be operated in US airspace by a private pilot; excepting only when testing repairs or routine maintenance.

I'm curious why. Certainly, older generations of America fighter aircraft are permitted - Michael Dorn flies his F-86 Sabre all the time.

Re:Nothing new (1)

Martin Blank (154261) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792744)

It'll never happen. The Tomcats are all scheduled to be either scrapped, mothballed, or go to museums. Given the perceived risk of an F-14 in private ownership going to Iran, the US will never sell them to private citizens. For that matter, the US has almost never sold its military aircraft to private citizens even when the aircraft is no longer combat viable, and aircraft sold to other nations include requirements as to final disposition at end of service, which may include authorized resale, sale back to the US, or verified destruction. Venezuela ran into this recently when it wanted to sell its F-16s to another country that the US didn't want in possession of them.

Re:Nothing new (4, Informative)

MBGMorden (803437) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792844)

Not only that, but the US has even been pissy about salvage efforts. Technically, "Property of US Government" is a label that is legally binding unless they sell it to you. People interested in old warbirds for example will go out and drag up wrecked World War II fighters to restore. Some out of jungles, some out of the ocean - wherever they can find them, but they're pretty much all just junk heaps that will need a fortune sank into them to make them flyable again. IIRC, while the Navy and Marine Corps is somewhat lenient on the issue (there was no Air Force around back them), the Army has still been known to confiscate the 70 year old junk heaps claiming that they're still US Army Property.

If they're being that picky with piston engine prop-powered planes, they're definately not going to let you privately own a US military fighter jet.

In reality though, when you compare fuel burn and such, aside from pure coolness factor, it's not remotely economical for a private citizen to own a fighter jet for personal recreational flying. Besides, once you actually get into flying, most pilots find it more satisfying to fly much slower (since I, and most other private pilots I know, fly more for fun and scenery than to actually travel anywhere). A Kitfox for example is pretty close to my dream plane. High wing, small, good fuel economy, stalls at about 35MPH, and top speed is between 95-120 MPH depending on what engine it's using :).

Re:Nothing new (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793128)

I suspect that at least some of that is more about grave-related emotions than interest in property rights or technology diffusion.

If a plane ends up lost in the jungle, or shallowish water, or some other unplanned location, it isn't all that uncommon to find bits of whoever flew it there as well. It would only take a few people in the right parts of the armed forces hierarchy who are really pissed about their dead being dug up by souvenir hunters to ensure that legally enforceable(but more or less pointless as a practical matter) restrictions are vigorously exercised.

Re:Nothing new (1)

hitmark (640295) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792968)

there is even some issues with the F-35 thats not even in production yet.

a number of nato nations pitched in on the development costs, with the understanding of buying one or more of the variants when ready. But now it seems that USA considers withholding some important systems, meaning the version sold will be inferior to the equivalent operated by US forces. And this is to nato allies.

hell, its not the first time. during WW2, britain passed people and research data on a potential atomic bomb to USA. But when the bomb was developed and the war over, USA filed it all away as top secret, not even sharing with its closest wartime allies.

Re:Nothing new (1)

tautog (46259) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792866)

Just have to call the Navy and ask really nicely. Oh yeah, you have to prove you have the money to have it delivered and all the fun stuff removed (engine systems, navionics, etc). We're on the list to get one for a static display at our local airport.

Pain at the pump (4, Interesting)

Dragoniz3r (992309) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792236)

Paying to keep this bad boy in the air won't come cheap. I wonder how trigger-happy the US Airforce might get if they stumbled across an SU-27 over US soil though... does it still have weapon hardpoints on the wings? TFA doesn't really address that, it just says "They don't have any weapons."

Re:Pain at the pump (1)

amiga3D (567632) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792306)

Figure something like five thousand dollars per hour for fuel...if you stay out of afterburner. Maintenance for a jet fighter is going to be intensive too. But...if you've got 5 mil that you can spend to buy a toy then another half mil or so a year to operate it shouldn't be a problem. I'd be sure to let the Air Force know about any flight plan....some of those Air National Guard pilots might have a flashback when they see it. :)

Re:Pain at the pump (2, Interesting)

TooMuchToDo (882796) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792630)

If you can afford the plane, you can afford the fuel. You can also afford the connections to get the FAA to allow you to go supersonic over US soil (which, currently, you can't unless you have a military/experimental exception).

Re:Pain at the pump (1)

cheesybagel (670288) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792732)

IIRC Malaysia and Vietnam had a couple of these, or something similar, and they seldom flew them because of the fuel bill. It has horrid fuel consumption. The range is good because it has huge fuel tanks.

The Russians made these to fight the F-15. It is very fast and agile. The weapon systems are also very good. It had these infrared missiles (AA-11 Archer) which could hit a target at a greater angle than similar NATO missiles at the time. This resulted in a flurry by NATO countries to upgrade their Sidewinder missiles. The electronics are totally obsolete by now however.

Re:Pain at the pump (2, Informative)

quantumplacet (1195335) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792320)

actually, TFA says "The jets are the “UB” variant of the SU-27, never intended for combat, so they aren’t fitted with weapons." Way to make up a quote so you could pretend like you read it though.

Re:Pain at the pump (1)

Dragoniz3r (992309) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792362)

Doesn't say they don't have hardpoints. There's a difference. FWIW I did RTFA. Too bad you don't know the difference between a hardpoint and an actual weapon.

Re:Pain at the pump (1)

that this is not und (1026860) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792452)

You doubtless read all the magazines, know all the terminology...

Re:Pain at the pump (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792514)

Your mom sure knows the difference between a mere hardpoint & an actual weapon.

Re:Pain at the pump (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792562)

I got your hardpoint right here...

Re:Pain at the pump (1)

Nimey (114278) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792386)

Ah, that'll be the trainer variant, then.

Re:Pain at the pump (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793214)

Does that mean it has two seats? The trainer variant of the F/A-18 is a twin seat aircraft.

Re:Pain at the pump (2, Informative)

wjsteele (255130) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792364)

Any foreign military aircraft that is brought into the US must be demilitarized before its sale can be approved. That include removing any equipment that could be offensive in nature, including radars, jamming equipment and weapon systems.

Bill

Re:Pain at the pump (1)

TooMuchToDo (882796) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792640)

But nothing stops you from acquiring and reinstalling said equipment after the purchase is complete (perhaps the law, but that doesn't count much if you were thinking about doing it anyway).

Re:Pain at the pump (1)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793028)

That's not what the parent asked. Of course the jet will be stripped of actual weaponry, but will it still have the attachment points (hardpoints). Removing hardpoints may or may not be possible as they could affect the structural integrity of the plane. After acquiring the aircraft, the owner could attach nonfunctional mockups for pure show.

Re:Pain at the pump (4, Informative)

Nidi62 (1525137) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792392)

does it still have weapon hardpoints on the wings? TFA doesn't really address that, it just says "They don't have any weapons."

These are Su-27UBs, also known as the Flanker-C. They were not fitted with weapons and were used as trainers, and were also used in the Soviet version of the Blue Angels or Thunderbirds.

Flight HRS v. Maint HRS (4, Informative)

WED Fan (911325) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792428)

As a former USAF avionics specialist, these things are a maintenance bear (npi). the maintenance ratio is measured in 10s of hours per flight hours. However, removing combat related systems will lighten the load and reduce certain maintenance cost.

Re:Pain at the pump (1)

v1 (525388) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792494)

Last I checked, military hardware (such as humvee) cannot legally be sold in the USA if it still has the hardpoints. (which is another debate over stupidity for another thread) I'd assume the same is true for aircraft.

Re:Pain at the pump (1)

Rockoon (1252108) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792832)

which is another debate over stupidity for another thread

Bullshit. This is slashdot.. we debate stupidity wherever and whenever we want!

Re:Pain at the pump (2, Informative)

sa1lnr (669048) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792556)

"The aircraft arrived here in a completely de-militarized condition -- all weapons systems and military-related hardware had been previously removed, in full compliance with U.S. and Ukranian laws."

http://www.prideaircraft.com/flanker.htm [prideaircraft.com]

Re:Pain at the pump (1)

afabbro (33948) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792804)

I wonder how trigger-happy the US Airforce might get if they stumbled across an SU-27 over US soil though...

Um, not at all? This isn't like 1917 and suddenly coming across a Fokker in Cornwall. It's 2009 and people file flight plans, and there are plenty of other Migs (17s, 21s, etc.) flying privately in the US.

Now, if it was shooting across the border and painted in Russian colors and not responding to radio that might a different point.

Re:Pain at the pump (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793228)

Sending the air force up is pretty routine now. The US does it if a passenger argues with the crew.

Re:Pain at the pump (2, Informative)

couchslug (175151) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792974)

The USAF routinely hosts warbird collectors at base airshows, and there are plenty of MIGs. Go to the next open house in your area, it's very cool.

Anyone wanting to blow up shit and kill people could just as well rent a cargo plane, pack it to the gills with expedient explosive, and bring MUCH more to the game than a few thousand lbs of ordinary bombs.

Range? (3, Interesting)

istartedi (132515) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792258)

I was curious about Concorde replacements a while back and researched some of the Soviet fighters. Unfortunately they tend to have short ranges at top speed. If they could just increase the fuel capacity of a two-seater, they'd have a Concorde substitute. The ticket would probably be a lot more though, since you've got one plane and one passenger.

If you don't have the range for a trans-Atlantic hop, having supersonic capability isn't too useful in the US. You're not allowed to fly supersonic over land here because of the boom.

Maybe it'll sell in some other country where the uber-wealthy have a shorter distance to travel, and no noise restrictions.

Re:Range? (1)

amiga3D (567632) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792334)

If you're worried about fuel usage get an F22. Supersonic cruise really helps the mileage.

Re:Range? (1)

swillden (191260) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792608)

An F22 is just a little bit harder to buy, though.

Re:Range? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792612)

You might be interested in a Tupolev Tu-160 strategic bomber, although I don't think they were designed for supersonic cruise.

Re:Range? (1)

tsalmark (1265778) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793204)

For all intents and purposes, bad English is seen as the hallmark of ignorance and lack of education.

It IS safe! (1)

indre1 (1422435) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792296)

I'd go for this instead of a business jet. Far more fun and you don't have to worry if the engines fail - you can always use the ejection seat. Russian fighter's ejection seats are far more safe than the US ones - you can eject at over Mach 2 and survive!

Re:It IS safe! (1)

tomhath (637240) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792416)

you can eject at over Mach 2 and survive!

What's the point of that? TFA says the plane's top speed is only Mach 1.8

Re:It IS safe! (2, Insightful)

JustNilt (984644) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792710)

you can eject at over Mach 2 and survive!

What's the point of that? TFA says the plane's top speed is only Mach 1.8

That's called a "safety margin".

Re:It IS safe! (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792990)

Point it straight down and hit the afterburners and you can probably top that. The airframe might not survive, but if you're planning on using the ejector seat then that's probably the least of your concerns.

Re:It IS safe! (5, Insightful)

iamhassi (659463) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792490)

"I'd go for this instead of a business jet. Far more fun and you don't have to worry if the engines fail - you can always use the ejection seat."

Sure, but of course it's your 5 million dollar jet you're ejecting from and not tax-payers, not to mention the bill the US gov't might hit you with for having to clean up the jet scattered over 10 acres. [74.125.95.132]

Of course this is a good deal for drug traffickers [narconews.com] . With a 4,000 kg normal payload capacity [aerospaceweb.org] and cocaine selling for $23,000 per kg [narcoticnews.com] you'd make almost 100 million in one trip, and who's going to try stopping a jet traveling Mach 2? [aerospaceweb.org]

Re:It IS safe! (1)

Arimus (198136) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792586)

These days you don't have the proper flight plan and don't respond to hails a few missiles will stop you pretty fast... and while its a good fighter jet if unarmed its not going survive long against current generation fighters + missiles.

Re:It IS safe! (1)

TooMuchToDo (882796) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792676)

True. But if you can make $100 million in one trip, deploy your payload somewhere where it can be recovered quickly, and are comfortable with ejecting somewhere in the event you engage with US aircraft, it's not a bad way to take home $90 million ($5 million for the aircraft, $5 million for your other expenses). No risk, no reward.

Re:It IS safe! (1)

grahamd0 (1129971) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792652)

... who's going to try stopping a jet traveling Mach 2? [aerospaceweb.org]

I'm just guessing [airforce.com] .

Re:It IS safe! (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792998)

WTF? The USAF has a .com address? When were they privatised?

Re:It IS safe! (1)

grahamd0 (1129971) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793124)

I was confused by that as well.

Re: stopping drug traffickers (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792722)

Of course this is a good deal for drug traffickers [narconews.com] . With a 4,000 kg normal payload capacity [aerospaceweb.org] and cocaine selling for $23,000 per kg [narcoticnews.com] you'd make almost 100 million in one trip, and who's going to try stopping a jet traveling Mach 2? [aerospaceweb.org]

Any US or european 4th gen fighter guided to interception by AWACS plane can shoot down that nacro-Suhoi with BWR missiles. It's not exactly a stealth aircraft, you know...

Re: stopping drug traffickers (1)

damburger (981828) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792950)

Surely that depends on it being spotted? IANAFP (I am not a figher pilot) but if you going for an arbitrary drop site (not a valuable target or anything military) you can simply avoid air defences? There must surely be some techniques you can use, even with a completely non-stealthy fighter, that can increase your chances of dropping off your $100 million dollar payload without being pwned by the air force? I'm also fairly certain that there are some ex-Soviet pilots now down on their luck who would know any tricks that could help.

Re: stopping drug traffickers (1)

JDeane (1402533) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793178)

My guess would be to fly extremely low and during a storm would work quite well but be crazy dangerous at the same time.

No weapons would increase range and speed.

But the Columbian's are already beyond flying the stuff in.....

Too many interesting links to pick one, but they use unmanned subs these days.

http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&source=hp&q=colombian+submarine&aq=0sx&oq=Columbian+sub&aqi=g-sx1g2 [google.com]

Re:It IS safe! (2, Informative)

couchslug (175151) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793058)

"who's going to try stopping a jet traveling Mach 2?"

Hundreds of pilots currently sitting alert would get a huge woody at the chance to put an AMRAAM or two into a MIG.

If it gets in, it still has to escape over water or lightly inhabited areas. It could punch off a simple pod to deliver drugs (the common USAF travel pod is an old napalm cannister with a door in the side and (obviously, because it would scatter valuable golf clubs) no fuses, but the aircraft could still be presumed hostile and shot down. Any nation defending its borders has every right to kill aircraft that refuse to land when so directed.

Re:It IS safe! (2, Informative)

0123456 (636235) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792552)

Russian fighter's ejection seats are far more safe than the US ones - you can eject at over Mach 2 and survive!

And Blackbird crews using Western seats have ejected at over Mach 3 and survived...

What really matters for ejection is dynamic pressure, not airspeed: a Blackbird ejection at Mach 3 at 80,000+ feet is equivalent to around 400mph at sea level. I doubt, for example, that a Russian fighter pilot could survive a Mach 2 ejection at sea level if they could actually reach that speed.

Re:It IS safe! (3, Informative)

wjsteele (255130) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792682)

Actually, the Russian K36 ejection seats are no more (or less) capable than the standard Aces II seat that all US fighters use. They are both very capable seats. The Aces II has a "success" rate of about 90% when operating outside the ejection envelope and about 95% within the envelope. The Russian design has similar statistics. Both are capable of 0-0 ejections, meaning that the pilot can eject from a stopped aircraft as 0 feet altitude and safely land. Most of the times, this feature is used when the aicraft is taking off or landing. There are several instances of both designs where aircraft doing low approaches had to eject with amazing results.

I think the difference in speed you are referring to is that the Russian seat is measured in kilometers and the US seat is in Knots. The Russian design is rated to about 1400kph, while the US design is 600 knots. If you do the simple math, that doesn't make them equal, until you realize that 600 knots is much much faster at altitude (because of air density,) where kilometers is a fixed distance. 600 knots at sea level is about ~1100kph, but at 35,000 feet, it is ~1400kph.

Remember, the limiting factor isn't the seat itself, it's that soft squishy part that the seat is design to hold. Russian or US designs don't differ in that respect.

Bill

Re:It IS safe! (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30793108)

Eh a knot is a knot, i.e. one nautical mile per hour. It's got nothing to do with density altitude. You may be thinking about the difference between true airspeed and indicated airspeed.

Ben Quote (2, Insightful)

Bunji X (444592) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792336)

An elegant weapon... For a more civilized age...

Unfortunately... (2, Funny)

YankDownUnder (872956) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792346)

...it won't fit through most drive-in's like McDonald's, KFC or Burger King.

Ummm... hangar space? (1)

macraig (621737) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792352)

Okay, now that I got it, where the heck do I store it? Under the carport? Unless the sucker has the best folding wings ever, the HOA fines are gonna be a bitch.

Re:Ummm... hangar space? (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792486)

I believe that the easiest thing to do would be to rent some hangar space. Perhaps buy it.

It may be smart to look for such space at an airport, rather than next door.

Re:Ummm... hangar space? (2, Informative)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792488)

Okay, now that I got it, where the heck do I store it? Under the carport? Unless the sucker has the best folding wings ever, the HOA fines are gonna be a bitch.

Wired wrote an article last week about fly-in communities.
http://www.wired.com/autopia/2010/01/spruce_creek_airpark/ [wired.com]

Re:Ummm... hangar space? (1)

that this is not und (1026860) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792496)

Haven't the 'important' members of the Association committed Hari-Kari yet over 'Property Values'? That's their primary obsession in life...

If not, here's a Ham Radio Antenna to push them over the edge....

Ham Radio .. Hah! A flagpole does it (1)

OzPeter (195038) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792718)

Haven't the 'important' members of the Association committed Hari-Kari yet over 'Property Values'? That's their primary obsession in life...

If not, here's a Ham Radio Antenna to push them over the edge....

All you need around these parts to piss of a HOA is a flagpole! Henrico Medal of Honor recipient, 90, ordered to remove flagpole [timesdispatch.com]

I'll take them all (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792390)

Send 1 to:

Osama bin Laden
1 Hidden Cave Trail
Afghan Border Region
Pakistan

Send the rest to:

al Qaeda Secret Training Base
Yemen

"Modernized" Western instrumentation - no thanks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792430)

Theses birds have been modernized with Western instrumentation, radios and GPS. Both are fully IFR equipped with U.S. avionics.

That's like putting the internals of a Ford into a BMW. Thanks, but no thanks, I want the original.

Re:"Modernized" Western instrumentation - no thank (1)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792528)

Actually it's the other way around. One of the major disadvantages of Soviet Union fighters compared to western fighters was their avionics. The Su 27 was far nimbler than its counterpart the F-15 but was acknowledged to have problematic radar and sensors [wikipedia.org] .

Re:"Modernized" Western instrumentation - no thank (2, Interesting)

cheesybagel (670288) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792836)

I would rather have the Western internals. Soviet fighters from this time period were analog instrumentation packed up the wazoo. You need to be very experienced to fly one of the things. Today you have like a couple of multifunction liquid-crystal displays which do everything. A lot of the countries which have old Soviet planes have bought Russian or Israeli electronic upgrade packages. Kind of surprising they do not have some sort of INS/GPS navigation system however. The Russians have had their Glonass satnav system almost as long as GPS has been available.

Two tandem seats max (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792448)

What single seater and at most two tandem seats? What the hell were they thinking? Looks like the Soviets never learnt the meaning of the word mile high club before trying to compete in the business jet market.

Blatant Slashvertizing (2, Informative)

prionic6 (858109) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792520)

There's probably a refId for Slashdot somewhere...

One can dream... (5, Interesting)

gillbates (106458) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792548)

When I was younger, I remember touring the Air National guard and asking the tour leader if I could by a fighter jet. He responded that to own a fighter jet, I'd have to find one in the Arizona boneyard and it would cost about 5 million dollars. In the 80's, the F16 cost 5 million each (or so I was told...)

However, even had I the money today, I'm not so sure I would buy one.

My uncle was in the Air Force, and actually flew in an F4 phantom. He had three remarks:

  1. He could not believe anything could travel so fast. Even though he rode a motorcycle, he was awestruck by the speed of the F4 phantom.
  2. Fighter jets built after WWII are as maneuverable as they are because they are inherently unstable in flight. The reason why a fighter jet can pull such tight turns is because it's "steady state" flight characteristic is not flat, level flight, but turning flight. While this is valuable in combat, it means that flying combat aircraft requires a high degree of concentration and training. Unlike a Cessna, a moment of inattention in a combat jet can mean finding oneself in an unrecoverable maneuver.
  3. Unlike what some simulators might predict, recovering from a dive can actually be much more difficult than entering one, because the fuel shifts forward, changing the aircraft's center of gravity. Of course engineers design the aircraft to minimize this, but it can never be completely eliminated and does have serious implications for flight. The asymetric flight characteristics of combat jets could come as a very unwelcome (and possibly fatal) surprise to a civilian pilot.

Today, I'm content to fly simulators because I can get a feel for the experience without the attendant risk and cost. Were I flying a 5 million dollar aircraft, I would be very reticent to try the kind of manuevers I do in the simulator, simply because of the risk involved. In the simulator, I can try spins and stalls and rolls that prudence would forbid in the real world.

But it would still be cool to own a fighter jet.

Re:One can dream... (1)

sznupi (719324) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792666)

Remark 2 is a bid weird considering that he was flying F-4...not the most agile of fighters, too often lost, also because of that, even against subsonic MiGs. Plus #2 isn't really universally true, there were different eras in philosophy of fighter design after WW2, not always emphasizing maneuverability.

Also, I'm surprised he didn't quote "F-4 - triumph of engine power over aerodynamics" ;p

BTW, if you are willing to make a distinction between "flying" (in a sim) and owning a fighter jet - many are quite affordable, when not capable of flight anymore.

Re:One can dream... (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793032)

Also, I'm surprised he didn't quote "F-4 - triumph of engine power over aerodynamics" ;p

It's the same with a lot of modern aircraft, which is why I'd be more interested in something WWII vintage for fun flying. It's fun watching planes that the pilot can just point straight up, open the throttle, and hover, but it rather takes the fun away.

Re:One can dream... (0)

Kjella (173770) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792712)

From what I understand the latest fighters have computer failsafes to prevent you from losing control, assuming you have enough altitude. And for those about to comment on that, computers are the only reason you can fly an unstable aircrafts in the first place. If the engine dies, you eject because it can't glide at all.

Re:One can dream... (1)

hitmark (640295) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793038)

yep, the F-16 and later have used fly by wire (basically the same as your desktop flight sim joystick) for controls, rather then the hydraulics used in something like the F-4.

btw, the claim about anything after WW2 being unstable by design is not really true. Even the F-16 was supposedly designed for being stable rather then unstable. Its the most recent generation (rafael, eurofighter, gripen, F-22, possibly mig-29 and su-27) that have that feature. And those make use of fly by wire for stability if ever the pilot lets go of the stick (early accidents related to gripen was related to control computers and pilot getting into something of a race condition when trying to recover from stall like conditions, iirc).

From what i have read, the F-16, for example, is so stable that if the nose is pointing towards the horizon, and the pilot where to eject, the plane would continue on until it ran out of fuel.

Re:One can dream... (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793070)

And for those about to comment on that, computers are the only reason you can fly an unstable aircrafts in the first place

Absolutely. I was at a talk a few years back describing the F117's user interface systems. In the kind of things I've flown, there's a mechanical connection between each control and some flight surface. Move the stick forward and it pulls a cable and the elevators on the tail move. Push the pedal and a cable pulls the rudder. The F117 is an extreme case in the opposite direction. There is a huge amount of software effort giving you something that feels like that's still what you're doing, but in practice the direction and amount of movement (and even which surfaces move) in response to a particular action (or inaction; both will generate movement) depends on the speed, the crosswind, the angle of attack, and so on, and can vary far faster than a human can react. The only slightly surprising thing is that they bother putting a human in at all.

Re:One can dream... (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792812)

In the simulator, I can try spins and stalls and rolls that prudence would forbid in the real world.

You should have married Felicity, the fun sister, instead. (At least you didn't get stuck with Chastity...)

How many pepsi points is this gonna cost me? (4, Funny)

greensasquatch (854800) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792670)

I saw that commercial too... ...oh it's Russian? What's the Russian equivalent of Pepsi?

Old News (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30792734)

Wired did an article on this years ago, explaining how anyone getting into the market for a small business plane could easily pick up any number of military craft. SU-26s were approx. $80,000 at that time, and other european manufactured jets were selling even cheaper. This article also glosses over availability, but the price has gone notably higher for the su-27s. That article stated some private airports allowed them, but I dont know that that's a particularly large number. Nor am I thrilled at the idea of amateur hour in high speed jets. Also, how many tower technicians are trained and familiar with scheduling landings with aircraft of that class? Looking into that is probably one of a hundred steps you should take before getting into the market. Also the cost (which the article does mention) can be insane for fuel and maintenance. "The two happiest days of a yacht owners' life, the day the buy it and the day they sell it."

Certification (1, Interesting)

rossdee (243626) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792752)

Good luck on getting FAA certification, and permission to fly one of those in US airspace. And I'm pretty sure its not legal for a private jet to go over mach 1

Own it (0, Offtopic)

no-body (127863) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792838)

and mow your front lawn with it - YEEIIII!!!!

As a fiddler crabs its easier - claw size is genetic, one can only wave quicker to score.

How about a whole squadron? (1)

YrWrstNtmr (564987) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792962)

A private company [atacusa.com] at the local airport has several ex-military jets. A-4, Kfir, Hawker Hunters. They contract out to the Navy and USAF to fly adversary DACT and tow targets.

Airport Security (1)

Voulnet (1630793) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792984)

So, even if I owned this beast of a jet, do I have to adhere to flight regulations like getting screened at the airport and not carrying fluids (unless inside my body)? Do airport hangar services include reloading the Vulcan gun or sidewinders?

Accessories not included (1)

CosaNostra Pizza Inc (1299163) | more than 4 years ago | (#30792986)

$5 million dollar jet but what's available for armaments, in what quantities and how much do they cost? I'd like to send a message to my neighbor, one house over, the next time he cranks his music too loud.

Re:Accessories not included (1)

Chas (5144) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793230)

Just back it up to his front door.
Knock, and when he comes to the door, hit the afterburners.

No more loud neighbor problems.
Even if he never opens the door.

jets good, old jets better (1)

WegianWarrior (649800) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793034)

Bah - a friend of mine already own and flies his own Vampire jet [jetphotos.net] .
Best part? I get to help maintain it for him, being a certified system technician and all.

spare parts... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#30793134)

Helllo Sir, this is NAPA auto parts, how can we help you

Need a carb for a '98 Sukhoi 27, and some brake shoes for the forward gear

No problem. we have those in stock

Short (1)

athlon02 (201713) | more than 4 years ago | (#30793226)

Man, I'm so close to owning one... only $4.9999 million short. Can anyone spot me some money?

Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...