View Full Version : The new $1.2bn presidential helicopter

8th May 2014, 15:44
I see Mr Obama can't manage to think of better uses for $1.2bn, so its off to the toy shop with Michelle instead ...

Navy awards presidential helicopter replacement contract | NAVAIR - U.S. Navy Naval Air Systems Command - Navy and Marine Corps Aviation Research, Development, Acquisition, Test and Evaluation (http://www.navair.navy.mil/index.cfm?fuseaction=home.NAVAIRNewsStory&id=5625)

8th May 2014, 15:48
Speaking of helicopters; where is SASless?

8th May 2014, 15:52
Two threads running on the topic already.

One in Military and one in Rotorheads.

8th May 2014, 15:55
mixture, replacing the VH-3's has been a known requirement since the late 1990's. I find your criticism of the acquisition of the executive fleet unworthy. The previous effort got cancelled in a political move. That doesn't change the need to update the Executive Transport fleet which all presidents will use in the execution of their duties.

Dushan: the world wonders. (Cheap riff off of a Nimitz quote ... )

tony draper
8th May 2014, 16:22
Another fifty years or so,Mr President and other world leaders will probably be getting about on horseback I reckon.
That's assuming we haven't eaten all the horses by then of course.

8th May 2014, 17:07
The only way Mr. Obama will ever fly on one is for you guys to amend your Constitution in the next two years and then for him to win a third term.

The latter is a lot more likely than the former, but you do need to do both. You better hurry up.

8th May 2014, 17:27
then for him to win a third term.

I bet that thought alone strikes horror into the heart of many Americans (and others).

8th May 2014, 17:30

Hell, bring me back Bill Clinton before that.

Alloa Akbar
9th May 2014, 12:44
Yet another crap aquisition program, a bit like the USAF KC-X.. "Oh crap, the Europeans have submitted the best bid.. scrap the contract and do it again and include the Sikorsky must win clause this time!!"

And now I shall don my tin hat and await all the crap responses from connecticut about alleged non-compliance and side impact cabin strength.. :rolleyes:

9th May 2014, 15:34
The latter is a lot more likely than the former, but you do need to do both.
You better hurry up.

reminds me of the old Looney Tunes (Bugs Bunny) cartoon of the little yippy dog jumping excitedly around the big bulldog until the big dog finally grows tired of the yipping and smacks the ankle-biter.

Chester and Spike is the reference if needed.

And to stay on topic, I believe it was Barry Himself who cancelled the previous contract for a new Marine One. Only to seek this new bid at undoubtedly higher prices.

An economic genius He is...

9th May 2014, 15:44
They should buy him an Apache so he can go and shoot his "fellow Americans" all by himself, rather than issuing executive orders, or leaving embassies unprotected.

Lightning Mate
9th May 2014, 15:59
....and a certain political party took away HMS Britannia from HMQ.

9th May 2014, 16:17
....and a certain political party took away HMS Britannia from HMQ.

But an entire country managed to re-elect George Dubbya. :}

9th May 2014, 16:41
Right, let's have a look at this $1.2B sky chopper-upper.


9th May 2014, 16:45
Isn't that cost the total for 21 helicopters to be delivered over the next decade?

It is worthwhile to keep POTUS et al safe and in communication, the proper path to saving money is to reduce the number of people needing such machines by slashing government.

wings folded
9th May 2014, 16:47
....and a certain political party took away HMS Britannia from HMQ.

Labour withdrew HMY Britannia from commission.

HMS Britannia lives on, but better known as Dartmouth.

Or so I believe. But I might be wrong

wings folded
9th May 2014, 17:40
Indeed, just like many naval establishments nowhere near water.

Traditions, no doubt. Bizarre, but traditions.

Um... lifting...
10th May 2014, 21:19
Right, let's have a look at this $1.2B sky chopper-upper.

Except for... that ain't it, meadowrun.

That's the VH-71, AKA US101, AKA AW101, from the previous acquisition round, where $4.4B was spent for 9 machines, which were then sold to Canada for $164M (and I should hope several truckloads of top grade maple syrup) for spares.

This $1.2B is for 6 machines and a couple of simulators at this stage of the process.

Not that it matters. Before long an obscure office will identify a need for 50% higher cruise speed and a whole lot more R&D money will be thrown at the V-22 or its next iteration so that those can become white tops.

Meanwhile, the VH-3Ds will soldier on for quite a while longer.

10th May 2014, 21:59
500N wrote: Two threads running on the topic already.

One in Military and one in Rotorheads.

So what?! I'm sure that it's even being discussed well outside of any PPRuNe forums too...?! So what are you doing here, if discussions here in JB will invariably be inferior?

I just remember that a contract had "almost" been awarded to a European helicopter mfr. going back 10 years or so now. But which was never respected. Just like for the more recent air-refuelling tankers bid.

Sort of makes a complete mockery on the whole so-called equitable USA bid / evaluation process for a second time to the general public. Especially when (in the case of the UK and others in Europe), whose politicians have already committed their countries to spending "multi-billions" on the still "experimental and un-proven" JSF variants proven only in Hollywood movies against Martian invaders, never against Russian or Chinese equivalents. Maybe the current, if aged fleet of Presidential helicopters could serve another 10 years until the USA procurement process is revised correctly, and why not...?!

What is especially galling to many Europeans is that in spite of all our own governments' openness towards considering USA suppliers for most important military hardware, the USA eventually decided in not spending even just US$1 billion or so on a new "EU-manufactured" fleet of Presidential helicopters those many years ago. IMHO, the USA somehow confuses European nations wishing to merely consider USA made weapons with other countries in the developing or 3rd World where they "can impose" certain things. Or maybe they can (and do here in Europe even ca. 2014 :uhoh:

10th May 2014, 22:04

I was just letting him know, not telling him to delete it, that's all.

Sharing information, not being dogmatic although I can see how it might have come across like that.

10th May 2014, 22:09
I know that 500N. Sorry for "picking" on you inadvertently. Just hope all those over-priced JSFs Oz have on order will come in useful eventually. Or were you going to use them to merely attempt to control the dingoes and "wild cat" populations? :E

10th May 2014, 22:12

No worries. I think I might have misread your post then ;)

Don't know enough about it.

"Or were you going to use them to merely attempt to control the dingoes and "wild cat" populations?"

I whack cats any chance I get but Dingoes are now protected :rolleyes: in the NT
- yes, they actually protected them - and I abide by it.

10th May 2014, 22:18
I just remember that a contract had "almost" been awarded to a European helicopter mfr. going back 10 years or so now. But which was never respected

The contract was respected, especially its cancellation clauses, once the program blew schedule and budget to the point each VH-71 a/c was going to cost more than each VC-25, but I think it's a safe bet you knew that already.

12th May 2014, 14:44

NH-90. It took how long to unscrew that bird?

Your presumption of virture in the case of EU helicopter manufacturers is no surprise.

The above considered, the program with the AW 101 ran into that nasty little thing in acquisitions called Requirements Creep. It has killed other programs. In this case, I think that timing was the killer. The acquisition process has all sorts of warts, and a perfect storm of the President making a point, and a few in congress making a similar point, provided the opportunity to send a message to other acquisition programs: none of you is safe, clean up your act.

Not sure if the message actually got across, but that is part of why AW 101 died: to make a political point. I have a friend who worked on in it a few years ago, a former Marine. His take on the AW-101 was that it was a good bird.

12th May 2014, 15:32
The majority of all "civilian" contracts awarded by governments have almost always well-exceeded their original contract values / estimates etc., I'm not aware of any "military" contracts which have either delivered "on time" or at the agreed "cost-estimate", and certainly never both...?! Perhaps you know better?

I'm not saying this is an exclusively USA "procurement process" failing. It also occurred with the UK MOD when they decided to build their "own new" aircraft-carriers instead of just modernising the existing French "Charles de Gaulle" nuclear-powered design with (fully-operational steam-catapults, why not?) and French Dassault's proven Rafales to equip them until the JSFs became operational. Instead of waiting forever for a competent JSF-variant/s to become available. The 1 (of 2, #2 of 2 being destined for the "scrap-beach" already...) the UK's sole aircraft-carrier is just a "very big helicopter-carrier" at best, to all intents and purposes. And an almost complete waste of UK taxpayer's cash for "intended or fit" purpose.

But why should (or how could) you expect the average taxpayer to understand all the "ins and outs" behind each or every armament? That is why the usual US$, €, and other currencies in their billions are so-often easily mis-spent. Perhaps it's what our politicians intend (partly to ensure their own political parties continue to exist and benefit from the generosity of the military-industrial complex), but also because they don't know WTF they're doing in the 1st place regardless of all the expertise they have available?! About anything. They're just glad they got elected, and believe that whatever needs to be learned about virtually anything can be done so in merely the 1st 1/3rd of their rule (having sufficiently scared-away most of those with any real knowledge or expertise during their election campaigns). :\