Armageddon???? (Part Fifty Up)

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Post by MKSheppard » 2008-03-03 04:14am

The Duchess of Zeon wrote:Most assault rifles in the US Army don't have collapsible stocks, you dumbshit.
Actually they do. Mostly, with the wholesale replacement of the M-16 with the M-4 lately.
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Post by JN1 » 2008-03-03 09:54am

The Duchess of Zeon wrote:
Admiral Valdemar wrote:I take it giving out M82s to everyone is a bad idea then. Something smaller like the AI chambered for the .338 Lapua Magnum?
That would definitely work from the standpoint of the British Army, yes.

You could probably get the FN-FAL to work with .338 Lapua Magnum, for that matter.
I can certainly see that working, so long as we can make about three, or four million of them (around the same number of No.1 Mk. 4 rifles), as we are going to be bringing back conscription too. From figures I've seen around 5 million men served in the armed forces in WW1, and I think about the same in WW2. If we assume about three million will serve in the army, then that's a rather large requirement for personal weapons.
As we've seen from the M16, the L85 is not going to cut this mustard, and the UK can't even fall back on a plan like that of Her Grace.

One thing we'll certainly have to do is re-establish the manufacture of rifles in the UK. In normal times cost might mitigate against this, but I think at this point even the Treasury are not going to quibble about finances. The SLR was a pretty good design, and a bit more soldier-proof than the L85 family, so it might be a good basis for a rifle to be issued to British conscripts.

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Post by MKSheppard » 2008-03-03 11:53am

Oh man, another great quote:

""If the USS New York has to follow Osama bin Laden to the gates of hell, PCO Jones and his crew ... have my full support," Vito Fosella, R-NY"

at the USS new York commissioning :D
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Post by R011 » 2008-03-03 12:37pm

The Duchess of Zeon wrote:
I don't disagree with you, but we've got the first one, so we might as well put it to use.

Here's the problem with even one line. We cluld spend engineering resources trying to get F-84's back in production and end up with an aircraft for which there are few or no established spare parts sources, no current manuals (especially as these are modified F-84's), no simulators, no qualified air or ground instructional pers or facilities, no trained pilots, and no trained ground crew, or we can do something else. Use those engineers to set up lines for current aircraft, like the Hawk, for which we have established logistics and training systems and a great number of trained people. Every American carrier pilot, including many who failed after advancing to operational training with fighters, is qualified on the T-45. Every RAF, RAAF, Indian Air Force, and Canadian Forces fighter pilot candidate qualified on the Hawk as have pilots from other air forces throughout the world. If there are a dozen pilots currently qualified to fly the F-84 I'd be surprised (and a pilot who hasn't flown one in thirty years is not qualified). Nor would I trust the thirty year old memories of a retread crew chief to keep my aircraft flying.

Similar arguments could be made for other in-production aircraft, like the Su-25 and the L-159 where those systems are in use, like Russia and it's former and current allies and customers.

We are building mass air forces even larger than the combined air forces of the Second World War. The best way to do that is KISS. Concentrate on as few different systems as possible and build.
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Post by The Duchess of Zeon » 2008-03-03 12:48pm

R011 wrote:
The Duchess of Zeon wrote:
I don't disagree with you, but we've got the first one, so we might as well put it to use.

Here's the problem with even one line. We cluld spend engineering resources trying to get F-84's back in production and end up with an aircraft for which there are few or no established spare parts sources, no current manuals (especially as these are modified F-84's), no simulators, no qualified air or ground instructional pers or facilities, no trained pilots, and no trained ground crew, or we can do something else. Use those engineers to set up lines for current aircraft, like the Hawk, for which we have established logistics and training systems and a great number of trained people. Every American carrier pilot, including many who failed after advancing to operational training with fighters, is qualified on the T-45. Every RAF, RAAF, Indian Air Force, and Canadian Forces fighter pilot candidate qualified on the Hawk as have pilots from other air forces throughout the world. If there are a dozen pilots currently qualified to fly the F-84 I'd be surprised (and a pilot who hasn't flown one in thirty years is not qualified). Nor would I trust the thirty year old memories of a retread crew chief to keep my aircraft flying.

Similar arguments could be made for other in-production aircraft, like the Su-25 and the L-159 where those systems are in use, like Russia and it's former and current allies and customers.

We are building mass air forces even larger than the combined air forces of the Second World War. The best way to do that is KISS. Concentrate on as few different systems as possible and build.
My concern is our ability to produce sufficient complex sets of machinery in a short period of time, that's all. Our manufacturing base is considerably eroded, all things said.
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Post by Firethorn » 2008-03-03 01:08pm

Academia Nut wrote:I can sort of see a form of universal conscription going into place in a lot of places, and I do mean universal.
Thus my suggestion to activate the militias. I didn't state it, but you have to remember construction/manufacturing demands.

It's one thing to throw a bunch of coke/pepsi advertising teams(and such) into uniform to fight in an active sense, but you don't want to touch the construction/engineering/manufacturing jobs.

On the other hand, on average the 'blue collar' workers are the ones with the personal weapons of a class to take on Baldricks.

Since a portal can be opened pretty much anywhere, we have even less of a 'front line'/'back line' assurance. The Baldricks could show up in Nebraska tomorrow.

Thus, you activate the militias for point homeland defense, while using the guard for their original purpose - defending the homeland. Local forces resist for the first hours/day, then the guard show up. Reserves just became active duty, and and Active duty become expeditionary, helping to prevent the Baldricks from establishing a foothold anywhere.

In normal usage, the 'militia' will work as usual, just carrying their rifle and ammo supply. To minimize retraining and resource cost to the government, they are encouraged to provide their own arms. If you think the military is obsessive about reliability and accuracy, they have nothing on a large proportion of the gunnies. Many of the gunnies will be turning out their own ammunition. 200 rounds of large game ammunition is a LOT to fire in a single day, which is about how long I expect them to hold out. Resupply? They'll be issued a military weapon if they manage to exhaust their own supply. Besides, I'd have it simply be the minimum - you'd be allowed to carry as much as you like.

As for the automobile factories - Sea Skimmer has it. You could transition most car factories to aircraft faster than you could transition them to armored vehicle factories. Heck, I see a likely split being car factories going to aircraft, heavy truck/SUV factories going to armored vehicles.

I don't see doing more than expanding/modifying aircraft already in production. UNLESS we decide to go with a piston driven combat craft in order to put aircraft up because we can't get enough jet engines. Thus the reason I suggested Mustangs. In the time you regeared to produce aircraft piston engines, you'd be able to update the design quite a bit. Computer prototyping at it's best.

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Post by Jawawithagun » 2008-03-03 01:31pm

How high can harpies operate? And would it be viable to be using planes that have little of a speed advantage over the harpies as long as they can outclimb them and can get to safety upwards?
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Post by DarthShady » 2008-03-03 01:34pm

Jawawithagun wrote:How high can harpies operate? And would it be viable to be using planes that have little of a speed advantage over the harpies as long as they can outclimb them and can get to safety upwards?
I don't think they can fly very high, considering they use wings for propulsion.They certainly can't fly as high as jet aircraft.

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Post by Sidewinder » 2008-03-03 01:44pm

MKSheppard wrote:Oh man, another great quote:

""If the USS New York has to follow Osama bin Laden to the gates of hell, PCO Jones and his crew ... have my full support," Vito Fosella, R-NY"

at the USS new York commissioning :D
Too bad the battleship was sunk as a target ship, and the factories for its shells closed down decades ago. It would've been fun to introduce the Baldricks to the fury of a 14-inch gun broadside.
Please do not make Americans fight giant monsters.

Those gun nuts do not understand the meaning of "overkill," and will simply use weapon after weapon of mass destruction (WMD) until the monster is dead, or until they run out of weapons.

They have more WMD than there are monsters for us to fight. (More insanity here.)

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Post by Jawawithagun » 2008-03-03 01:49pm

DarthShady wrote:
Jawawithagun wrote:How high can harpies operate? And would it be viable to be using planes that have little of a speed advantage over the harpies as long as they can outclimb them and can get to safety upwards?
I don't think they can fly very high, considering they use wings for propulsion.They certainly can't fly as high as jet aircraft.
Yeah but as some of the proposals have been turboprops (T-6 Texan II IIRC). These might still have their place despite their speed problems if they can be safe above the harpies I think.
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Post by Sidewinder » 2008-03-03 01:53pm

As for the ideal antidemon rifle, I hope the Pentagon still has blueprints for the T20 variant of the M1 Garand, which was designed to replace the Browning Automatic Rifle (BAR), and accepted the BAR's 20-round magazine and had selective fire ability. Tooling for the M1 Garand was provided to Italy as well, so Europeans can get their hands on T20 variants as well.
Please do not make Americans fight giant monsters.

Those gun nuts do not understand the meaning of "overkill," and will simply use weapon after weapon of mass destruction (WMD) until the monster is dead, or until they run out of weapons.

They have more WMD than there are monsters for us to fight. (More insanity here.)

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Post by MKSheppard » 2008-03-03 01:59pm

Sidewinder wrote:Too bad the battleship was sunk as a target ship, and the factories for its shells closed down decades ago. It would've been fun to introduce the Baldricks to the fury of a 14-inch gun broadside.
I was referring to the new LPD. Not the BB> Although I wonder how fast it would be to reactivicate the battleships, at least as towable platforms for the guns....
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Post by Academia Nut » 2008-03-03 02:10pm

I wonder how our naval assets will affect this war. So far all we've seen are the Leviathans, and those things look like we can cripple them just with active sonar. We'll probably need to institute naval convoys to prevent shipping from being attacked, with an emphasis on air superiority, but I get the big feeling that the baldricks are going to be completely and utterly fucked if they try to head out to sea.

Although I do get an amusing image of triremes filled with baldricks trying to sail into a major harbour only for a modern cruiser or destroyer to appear out of the mists, made completely of metal and moving without sail or wind.

And then when they're screaming and panicking at this monstrosity smashing through their lines, something really big like a battleship or aircraft carrier shows up.
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Post by Sidewinder » 2008-03-03 02:11pm

MKSheppard wrote:
Sidewinder wrote:Too bad the battleship was sunk as a target ship, and the factories for its shells closed down decades ago. It would've been fun to introduce the Baldricks to the fury of a 14-inch gun broadside.
I was referring to the new LPD. Not the BB> Although I wonder how fast it would be to reactivicate the battleships, at least as towable platforms for the guns....
I know you were referring to the LPD-- I looked up USS New York on Wikipedia, and found an article on it-- but I think a broadside, i.e., big fireballs bursting in front of a Baldrick, followed by fireballs bursting around him and shredding his comrades to pieces, will make him shit himself more quickly.
Please do not make Americans fight giant monsters.

Those gun nuts do not understand the meaning of "overkill," and will simply use weapon after weapon of mass destruction (WMD) until the monster is dead, or until they run out of weapons.

They have more WMD than there are monsters for us to fight. (More insanity here.)

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Post by pdf27 » 2008-03-03 02:19pm

JN1 wrote:
The Duchess of Zeon wrote: That would definitely work from the standpoint of the British Army, yes.

You could probably get the FN-FAL to work with .338 Lapua Magnum, for that matter.
I can certainly see that working, so long as we can make about three, or four million of them (around the same number of No.1 Mk. 4 rifles), as we are going to be bringing back conscription too. From figures I've seen around 5 million men served in the armed forces in WW1, and I think about the same in WW2. If we assume about three million will serve in the army, then that's a rather large requirement for personal weapons.
As we've seen from the M16, the L85 is not going to cut this mustard, and the UK can't even fall back on a plan like that of Her Grace.
That's my guess as to what the UK will do - new build FN-FALs chambered in .338 Lapua. We already use the round, and there are still a LOT of senior ranks about who used the FN-FAL when younger so can convert the rest of the army to it. The rifle will probably have to be a bit bigger and heavier anyway to take the round and keep muzzle flash/blast within reasonable limits. This'll help with recoil and accuracy, but you'll probably want a bipod on the front - shooting a heavy rifle accurately at long range all day long is going to be tiring.

The current GPMGs will be held on to, but since 7.62mm doesn't really cut it and they're air cooled we won't be getting more of them. At a guess I'd say we'll see Vickers guns coming back in, probably also scaled up to take .338 Lapua. There is precedent for the British using the same cartridge in all their weapons (WW1 etc.), and logistics for this will be such a nightmare that there will be a very strong incentive to standardise on a single round.

JN1 wrote:One thing we'll certainly have to do is re-establish the manufacture of rifles in the UK. In normal times cost might mitigate against this, but I think at this point even the Treasury are not going to quibble about finances. The SLR was a pretty good design, and a bit more soldier-proof than the L85 family, so it might be a good basis for a rifle to be issued to British conscripts.
Getting them made in a hurry will actually be pretty easy. Despite all the whining about the decline of industry our production capacity in absolute terms is probably as high as it has ever been. If you've got a settled design you can assign individual factories to making particular parts and then leave them to making huge numbers of a single part. The biggest bottlenecks will be in cutting the rifling, where you will be waiting more machine tools before you can expand production.

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Post by pdf27 » 2008-03-03 02:26pm

Sea Skimmer wrote:Plants which currently build light trucks and various commercial trucks could and would be adapted to building simple AFVs, but AFV production will be limited for months by a shortage of armor quality steel and aluminum alloys.
How much armour would you actually need? So far the only weapons we've really seen are some big bronze knives, big sparks and the ability to breathe fire. With suitable electrical grounding and some form of NBC protection even relatively thin plate (say 5mm steel) should provide almost perfect protection. I can see things getting very "Mad Max", with the standard armoured vehicle being something like a small truck with light armour plates bolted on.
Having said that, we also know that Harpies somehow have the ability to kill tanks - IIRC a couple of Chally 2s and Abrams have been killed by them. Is this just that they caught the tanks napping with the lids open, or have I underestimated demon weaponry?

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Post by Stuart » 2008-03-03 02:50pm

pdf27 wrote: Having said that, we also know that Harpies somehow have the ability to kill tanks - IIRC a couple of Chally 2s and Abrams have been killed by them. Is this just that they caught the tanks napping with the lids open, or have I underestimated demon weaponry?
A tiny bit of a spoiler but the lost tanks were killed by harpies breathing fire into the engine compartments and/or setting fire to the inflammable junk tankers insist on plastering all over the outside of their vehicles. The vehicles weren't so much destroyed as the crews were forced to abandon them.
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Post by Starglider » 2008-03-03 02:54pm

DarthShady wrote:I don't think they can fly very high, considering they use wings for propulsion.They certainly can't fly as high as jet aircraft.
Normal birds can get surprisingly high:
Vultures sometimes rise over 10,000 feet in order to scan larger areas for food (and to watch the behavior of distant vultures for clues to the location of a feast). Perhaps the most impressive altitude record is that of a flock of Whooper Swans which was seen on radar arriving over Northern Ireland on migration and was visually identified by an airline pilot at 29,000 feet. Birds can fly at altitudes that would be impossible for bats, since bird lungs can extract a larger fraction of oxygen from the air than can mammal lungs.
Bar-headed Geese are known to cross the Himalayas at 29,500 feet (9,000 m). The world record holder is a Ruppell’s Griffon Vulture seen at 37,000 feet (11,300 m.) A Mallard, which struck an airplane at 21,000 feet (6,400 m), holds the record for the highest documented flight altitude for a bird in North America.
The limiting factor seems to be oxygen extraction, not thrust generation by flapping wings (which are generally more efficient than propellors in any case). I would suspect that harpies are rated to at least 30,000 feet and possibly as high as 40,000 for short periods, though they would normally have no reason to even try and fly this high. Still not enough to catch high-flying jets of course, but high enough to bring down a C-130.

P.S. Presumably harpies instinctively release hydrogen from their gas sacs as they climb to keep the pressure equalised, then regenerate it from biological sources as they descend.
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Post by KlavoHunter » 2008-03-03 02:56pm

pdf27 wrote:Having said that, we also know that Harpies somehow have the ability to kill tanks - IIRC a couple of Chally 2s and Abrams have been killed by them. Is this just that they caught the tanks napping with the lids open, or have I underestimated demon weaponry?
Harpies can breathe fire of some form or another, so it may be reasonable to believe that they invented the Baldrick version of the Molotov Cocktail, in a sense. Fire and tanks don't mix.

Figure they coughed up fire all over the engine deck, and that overheated the engine, and they have plenty of time to play with an immobilized tank and puzzle out a means to kill it.

Or I may be ignorant and not know the effects of fire-based weapons on modern tanks, what with NBC and such on them.
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Post by Surlethe » 2008-03-03 03:01pm

Starglider wrote:I would suspect that harpies are rated to at least 30,000 feet and possibly as high as 40,000 for short periods, though they would normally have no reason to even try and fly this high. Still not enough to catch high-flying jets of course, but high enough to bring down a C-130.
This depends on what the atmosphere is like in Hell and whether or not they need to go that high. If they've never flown higher than 5,000 feet and have never needed to, their physiology may be maladapted to such altitudes.
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Post by Starglider » 2008-03-03 03:12pm

Surlethe wrote:This depends on what the atmosphere is like in Hell and whether or not they need to go that high. If they've never flown higher than 5,000 feet and have never needed to, their physiology may be maladapted to such altitudes.
I strongly suspect they do fly to at least 15,000 feet from time to time. While hell may lack the plate tectonics to produce fold mountains I'm pretty sure it has an abundence of volcanoes, of which the larger ones are at least on the scale of Mauna Kea.

Regardless, the ability of birds to fly at such extreme altitudes wasn't created by direct selection pressure. A natural consequence of developing a respiratory system that can support extreme exertions at moderate altitudes is a respiratory system that can support light exertion at much higher altitudes. Harpies bred to dogfight to the death at 5,000 feet should have plenty of reserve oxygen extraction capability for a slow climb to >20,000 feet.

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Post by R011 » 2008-03-03 03:16pm

pdf27 wrote: Getting them made in a hurry will actually be pretty easy. Despite all the whining about the decline of industry our production capacity in absolute terms is probably as high as it has ever been. If you've got a settled design you can assign individual factories to making particular parts and then leave them to making huge numbers of a single part. The biggest bottlenecks will be in cutting the rifling, where you will be waiting more machine tools before you can expand production.
Not to mention that if the US can't make it, for whatever reason, then someone else, like China, can. After all, we're all on the same side now. Even if the American industrial base might have declined, world-wide, it's far better than a generation ago.
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Post by JN1 » 2008-03-03 03:40pm

The rifle will probably have to be a bit bigger and heavier anyway to take the round and keep muzzle flash/blast within reasonable limits. This'll help with recoil and accuracy, but you'll probably want a bipod on the front - shooting a heavy rifle accurately at long range all day long is going to be tiring.
If we are moving to a larger calibre then we do want a heavier rifle to absorb as much of the recoil as possible; the recoil of the SMLE (or No.1 Mk.3 if one prefers) was apparently quite nasty, though the Lee-Enfield cavalry carbine was worse. The bipod is certainly a good idea, firing .338 rounds all day is going to be hard enough without some sort of help.
If we stick something like the old SUIT, or the current SUSAT on the rifle and it should be a good weapon.
The current GPMGs will be held on to, but since 7.62mm doesn't really cut it and they're air cooled we won't be getting more of them. At a guess I'd say we'll see Vickers guns coming back in, probably also scaled up to take .338 Lapua. There is precedent for the British using the same cartridge in all their weapons (WW1 etc.), and logistics for this will be such a nightmare that there will be a very strong incentive to standardise on a single round.
I wonder if it would be possible to re-chamber the MAG to accept .338? I certainly think that the British Army would also be issuing more L1A1 Brownings and H&K grenade launchers. I do like the idea of seeing the old Vickers return though.
Getting them made in a hurry will actually be pretty easy. Despite all the whining about the decline of industry our production capacity in absolute terms is probably as high as it has ever been.
I think that your probably right. I think it may be a case of re-tooling factories to produce rifles rather than widgets and gromitts. I also think that a lot of the people who worked in the various Royal Ordnance Factories are still around, so their knowledge and experience can be tapped into when getting production started up again.
I suspect that we have a lot of machine tools making civilian products, but I wonder how easy it would be to convert them to military production.

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Post by fb111a » 2008-03-03 03:52pm

The Duchess of Zeon wrote:
R011 wrote:
fb111a wrote:
Can a T-6A outrun harpies when it runs out of ammo?
As far as I can tell, yes. Harpies seem to be just a bit faster than a Little Bird or about half the speed of a Harvard II. For that matter, a Hawk 115 compared to an F-84 is faster, probably more reliable, and has a better payload and armament selection. It's actually in production, the tools haven't been in storage for half a century, and is made using modern techniques that a modern workforce is used to employing.
By a T-6 you mean a Texan, right? I don't think they could, as Stuart stated that the Corsair and the P-51 would be marginal. The P-47 and the Spitfire and some of the faster Russian prop birds, along with the likes of the Bearcat, Tigercat and the Hellcat, are probably also acceptable.

Anyway, the point I'm making is that--and you can forget the F-86, please? We don't have tooling for it. Any we can restore to serviceability fly until lost or broken down, but it's a dead bird otherwise--we can probably build as many Hawk 115s--the F-45 in USAF service--as we absolutely possibly can, and still have both the need and the resources (since it's so simple even in comparison), to start production of the F-84K.
Your Grace, the F-84K is nice for the Air Force, but the Navy and Marines will need a plane that can fly from carriers, which the F-84 can not do.

The F-84K/Hawk 115 will be an interim solution. You still need a plane that you can fly off a carrier.

If the FJ-4B is out of the question, some alternative is needed. Is it the A-4? Even then, the issue becomes one of logistics.

Re-creating the production line for the FJ-4B (the Navy's version of the F-86H) is the best medium-to-long-term solution. You get common logistics, a high degree of use with present weapons in the arsenal (20mm shells, AIM-9 Sidewinders, and the dumb bombs and rockets). It also has the same benefits of simplicity. It'll be tough, but is there a better option to get the kind fo plane that will be needed to face the baldricks?

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Stuart
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Post by Stuart » 2008-03-03 04:36pm

fb111a wrote:Re-creating the production line for the FJ-4B (the Navy's version of the F-86H) is the best medium-to-long-term solution. You get common logistics, a high degree of use with present weapons in the arsenal (20mm shells, AIM-9 Sidewinders, and the dumb bombs and rockets). It also has the same benefits of simplicity. It'll be tough, but is there a better option to get the kind fo plane that will be needed to face the baldricks?
The problem is, the tooling for the F-86 (in any of its varients) is long dead so bringing it or the FJ-4 back is out of the question. By a quirk, a set of production tooling for the F-84 is in storage at Davis Monthan (probably because the RF-84 remained in NATO service until very late - well into the late 1980s - and there may have been a need to make spare parts for them) so we could restore the F-84 to production if we wanted to. However, the last four wrds there are key. There are many better options than a resurrected F-84, the Goshawk (which is carrier-capable) being the leading contender. With parallel active production lines in the UK and the US, the Goshawk/Hawk in both its single and two-seat variants is by far the best bet. The logic behind bringing an F-84 like aircraft back is impeccable but the problem is that same logic identifies many better clients for the role.

By the way, the A-10 tooling is gone. Fairchild-Republic scrapped it to make way for their T-46 trainer. Some bits remain at AMARG but that's all.
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