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A-10B Desert Storm: 2/28 Taking a break

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Really nice work there on your NAW.  I hope you will publish finished photos of it.


Thought I might contribute a little bit to the discussion on the windscreen.


There are three reasons for the switch to a single piece windscreen.


1.  Birdstrike vs. Small Arms.

While the existing windscreen is indeed 'bullet proof' (7.62mm API), that is -all- it is and only the main panel is so rated, not the quarter panels.  It will not stop 12.7mm (Tank) 14.5mm (BTR) or 23mm (Zoos).  To be honest, from that aspect, you'd be fortunate if the bathtub did.  Given the period GSFG/WARPAC threat, by the time you close enough for small arms fire to pose a serious risk, especially at night, you had better be down to harsh language and rude gestures yourself.  The reverse was true of bird strike.  Generally you outrun anything you might hit as birds are only roused by overhead jet noise in the aftermath of their wakes.  But CAS often requires tight orbits over a narrow area where risen flocks of birds could pose a real second-pass problem as you went in for five minutes to rough the enemy up and then backed of for 5-10 more before rinse-repeating.  Under these conditions, where a solid windscreen will bow and deform in a rippling wave effect (after being struck by a bird), it will not break.  A framed windscreen however usually shears on the unequal stress lines of the frame posts and this shear causes the quarter panels to shatter and shrapnel spray the whole cockpit.  Razor sharp and heavy fragments of Polycarb are far worse than the bird itself in this.


2.  Raster Presentation of FLIR.

While it was not generally assumed that the jet would get the WARHUD (holographic raster presentation) systems being developed for the F-15E and F-16C.40, you do need to have a wide field of view system so that there is minimal tunnel-speeding effect and some look into turn ability on which to present 1:1 scaled imagery.  Where the windscreen frames interfere with this, they 'superimpose' an artificial lateral terminus that disagrees with the infinity projection of the image itself.  So the windscreen post frames had to go, along with the double combiner stack and it's own heavy side frames.


3.  Night Vision Effects.

While we were not using the existing Gen-2 goggles at the time within the fast jet community, it was discovered, later in the early 90s, that the main, armored, windscreen panel was so heavily leaded that it interfered with the performance of the Gen-3 M949s (ANVIS-9) which were then coming online.  This is important because, while goggles greatly exacerbate the risks of low altitude ejections, they also provide significantly better look into turn and threat tracking.  You can literally see a missile launch from dozens of miles away because it is a very intense, near-IR, source.  Almost like a small sunrise.  As a result most pilots prefer night vision on a stick over HUD FLIR.


With regard to the WX-50 pod.  It was a strange looking beast with a nose/radome assembly almost half again as large as the rest of the pod with a noticeable step in diameter as a result.  The scanner was fifteen inches across with perhaps another 6-8" on either side.  The Flight Global from 6-12-76 has a couple of good renderings of the pod on a Skyhawk and in sectioned view.  Possibly enough to let you scratch build.  Note the conformal ECS vent system on the back which looks somewhat like the drogue receptacle on a KC-130 wing tank (I can't paste LINKS here so check out the Wikipedia listing for Google: 'Hose Drogue Pod').  I believe Attack Squadron resin models makes this pod as part of their KC-130W upgrade in 1/72nd.  Useless for the Trumpeter but possible for the Hobbyboss.


Though the late 1979 Aviation Week article on the NAW A-10 shows the WX-50 radar in the forward section of the port landing gear sponson, I have some question over the utility of the unit in this location.  Namely, in a starboard turn there is no look angle as the fuselage masks.  The FLIR was never intended to be more than a basic terminal (gun) targeting aid with a FOV of approximately 20` to either side and a laser range finding ability only.  But the radar needs to have a full look angle of at least 80`, both in searching for MTI ground targets to cue the FLIR onto and to assist with manual terrain following.


This means a suspended centerline pod.  Which is not all that hard to do as the station easily spanwise and longitudinally clears the inboard wing hardpoints and is rarely used otherwise.


Just some thoughts, hope your hard effort turns out well.



First- Awesome name!  


Second- Awesome post!  I appreciate the input and it has given me a bit to consider in regards to the single piece windscreen.  It's been a while since I've had a chance to sit down at the bench much less get back to this one, so this is still sitting off to the side patiently waiting...


Hope things slow down enough to get back to some modeling soon :)


Thanks again and for looking in on my build!



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Hello Emperor Kai,



How are  you doing with this..did you finish it and I missed it. :hmmm:

Hey there Maru-

It's still sitting next to the work bench along with the Skyray.  Have been quite busy with work and life in general, so haven't had much of a chance to build for quite awhile.  One of the projects I've been picking at is a general re-organization of the man-cave, but once that is squared away, there should be plenty of motivation to get back to some bench time. 


Thanks for checking in on this  :)



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Hello Kai,


Thanks for the updates.. well you still have another month so no worries and I am sure the man cave will make you more enthusiastic to get some more done.


Good luck with the new model room.


:popcorn: :popcorn:

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