"Spooky" in action....

Discussion in 'General Military Arms & History Forum' started by Guest, Mar 3, 2003.

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    Xracer
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    Posts: 1070
    (10/16/01 7:33:48 am)
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    Both the AP and BBC have reported that "Spooky", AC-130 gunships, are in action against Taliban troops near their headquarters in Kandahar.

    news.bbc.co.uk/hi/english...601726.stm

    www.af.mil/news/factsheet...nship.html

    Looks like a new phase in the air war.

    LIKTOSHOOT
    Senior Chief Moderator Staff
    Posts: 2557
    (10/16/01 8:59:17 am)
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    You can run, but you can`t hide, talk about a flying hornets nest that delivers..........can you say complete coverage, I knew ya could......Hi ya, Osalamie!
    America, we are the symbol of Freedom and Liberty......

    warpig883
    V.I.P. Member
    Posts: 736
    (10/16/01 9:06:40 am)
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    I have seen one of these in action. It is truly amazing. Talk about a rain of lead and fire. Then they got big ass cannons on board. They chewed up a piece of ground until there was nothing left. The weapons are computer controlled so when the plane is circleing or turning or whatever the guns stay on target. That is pretty amazing especially when they are chunking 105 rounds out the side. Big booms when they hit.
    Afterwards I was on the flightline and walked over to it and started talking to the crewcheif. He gave me a tour and a empty 40mm shell for a souvineer. I thought they were nick named spectre?
    Don't mind me, I am a blithering idiot:)

    polishshooter
    Senior Chief Moderator Staff
    Posts: 1907
    (10/16/01 9:46:01 am)
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    The official name IS Spectre. But "Spooky" is the unofficial name, the second generation after "Puff," used in Vietnam.

    Kinda like the Thunderbolt II, which took on the name Warthog, and is now called that...

    With them in there now, you have to read between the lines...

    That also means we are now at low level, too...not at 10000 feet or higher like we were...

    Spooky's MAIN role is NOT fire support, but superaccurate laser designation for F16s to place their bombs dead on small targets, like caves? And to provide suppression during times the 16s are outbound and new ones are inbound...

    And also are intrinsic to special ops missions on the ground, kinda like an FAC/low level AWACS/artillery support/pathfinder, usually one is included in any SOF "package" involving Pave-Low insertions...

    I'D guess their presence means LESS to the "Air War" as it does that the Green Beanies, Seals, Rangers, Delta, and Air Commandos are "getting serious..."
    It is not the critic who counts, nor the man who points out how the strong man stumbled, or where the doer of the deed could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming, who does actually strive to do the deeds, who knows the great enthusiasms and spends himself in a worthy cause, who at best, knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and at worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly. His place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who knew neither victory nor defeat. -Theodore Roosevelt 1898 I'm so PROUD to be an AMERICAN...

    warpig883
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    (10/16/01 10:50:47 am)
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    Used to watch the warthogs all the time. I was a helicopter mech. and our shop was next to the runway. We would stand on top and the A-10's would come right over us and do low level rolls. My first and last love though is the Ch-47. I loved working on and riding them. The special op boys should be getting some use out of the MH-47e's over there.
    Don't mind me, I am a blithering idiot:)

    polishshooter
    Senior Chief Moderator Staff
    Posts: 1910
    (10/16/01 2:22:49 pm)
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    Actually, I'm not sure if the Beanies and Delta at least use the Shithooks anymore...

    The PaveLows are highly modified AF CH-53s, pretty big suckers, each can carry up to an 8 man team, has a 5 man crew, and two Green Beanies assigned to the Air Force Air Commando crew to provide security if they crash, assist in extracting wounded teams and just be around to coordinate with the ground GB teams...and they usually operate in pairs.

    For larger ops, Blackhawks and Apaches and the little AH-6s kinda tuck in tight and keep formation and the PaveLow leads them in wild rides through the night at 140 knots or so 8-40 feet off the ground.

    It was not uncommon in Iraq for the Pavelows to "bottom" on the occasional sand dune on the way in, oops! They are WILD. The pilot actually sits like sideways, looking at ONLY the PaveLow terrain following radar equipment in the console next to him, the Copilot is the one looking out the windscreen with nightvision, and spotters with night vision literally hang out either side of the chopper looking for clearance to other choppers, and obstacles...they train as a team, ANY of the crew can give immediate orders to the pilot if they spot something, and he does it NO questions. The fifth crew member is ECM.

    They take the "hottest" chopper jocks they can find, then whip ALL the independence out of him, teaching him to fly as a part of the TEAM, not like most pilots do. And they literally can go anywhere, in any weather, LOW and FAST.

    And the Beanies LOVE them, they train together and they know they can count on them to be where they are supposed to be ON TIME, and that they will come in hot to get them when they step in it no matter what. Plus they have swivel mini-guns and .50s so can give pretty good fire support too...
    It is not the critic who counts, nor the man who points out how the strong man stumbled, or where the doer of the deed could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming, who does actually strive to do the deeds, who knows the great enthusiasms and spends himself in a worthy cause, who at best, knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and at worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly. His place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who knew neither victory nor defeat. -Theodore Roosevelt 1898

    warpig883
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    (10/16/01 8:50:39 pm)
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    The latest version of the -47 passed the pavelows up. Everything the Pavelow had only faster and able to lift more. MH-47e was the last model I was around. Probably into F models by now. Most of them are with the 160 from Ft. Cambell, and at Hunter AAF in GA.
    These baby's carry lots of fuel and armour. Hard points for mini-guns and machine guns.Rockets Granade chunkers. Flares and Chaff dispenser. Top of the line avionics and jamming/intercept equipment.air to air refueling, 4000+ hp on each engine.

    Their history goes back to the Gunns a GO GO. The first real gunship. One of these was just restored and is on display it is the last one of it's kind. This one is an A model in the mid 60's in Vietnam. I got the links to the stories of these birds and the story of the restoration if anyone is interested.
    Don't mind me, I am a blithering idiot:)

    Edited by: warpig883 at: 10/18/01 5:59:59 am

    polishshooter
    Senior Chief Moderator Staff
    Posts: 1917
    (10/17/01 11:15:20 pm)
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    COOL!

    But then the AF Air Commandos would get left out, and we can't have THAT can we?

    They'd fight like hell if the Army tried to transport it's own Beanies...that's the only "special ops" the AF has, and they need part of the "action" for "political" reasons...

    Probably the Army developed them because it was embarassing that the Air Force had to lead the "State of the Art" Apaches by their noses to their firing points in the dark in Iraq so they could destroy those radar sites to start the Air War...the Pavelows had to "shepherd" them in and out or they'da got lost...still sticks in their craw...

    I'm surprised the AF even let the Army have them...kinda like they won't let the Army have armed fixed wing aircraft...
    It is not the critic who counts, nor the man who points out how the strong man stumbled, or where the doer of the deed could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming, who does actually strive to do the deeds, who knows the great enthusiasms and spends himself in a worthy cause, who at best, knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and at worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly. His place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who knew neither victory nor defeat. -Theodore Roosevelt 1898

    warpig883
    V.I.P. Member
    Posts: 766
    (10/18/01 4:58:32 am)
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    I am sure the interservice rivalry is in effect on this topic. Of course the Airforce also can pass on the real crappy jobs if the Army can do them for itself. You will never see a Pavelow unit pack up everything they own and go live and work in a mud field for a month. The Army aviation units do this all the time. I am witness to that fine and pleasant horror.

    Speaking of the fixed wing thing. When I was stationed in Korea in 90 -91. I was in the main Army Aviation maintenance support unit for that part of the world. We still had all the tools to work on fixed wing aircraft. Military types will know how the Army is about TO&E usually a unit doesn't have what they need. But in this case we had all these special tools for aircraft that had been gone for years and years. Just an idiosyncracy of the military or something more?
    Don't mind me, I am a blithering idiot:)

    Edited by: warpig883 at: 10/18/01 6:04:34 am

    polishshooter
    Senior Chief Moderator Staff
    Posts: 1962
    (10/23/01 8:12:05 pm)
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    Pig, well you were right, at least for the Rangers.

    And I wonder what that one Shithook hit on extraction and didi to lose a whole strut and wheel assembly. Musta been a heckuva JOLT.

    Least the 53s have retractable gear, when they bounced off sand dunes in Storm at 150 knots they didn't have any damage, just bounced up 20 feet in the air or so...

    The Tallywhackers displayed it and claim they shot one down, heck they probably never even SAW it when they were cowering in some latrine hole in fear when the Rangers went in with the Combat Talons and Gunships...

    If I was planning for the Rangers, I just might lay in another mission to the SAME spot to recover the darn wheels, least you know some Tallys would BE there...
    We must make war as we must; not as we would like. - Field Marshal Kitchener, 1915

    warpig883
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    Posts: 869
    (10/23/01 9:30:01 pm)
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    If that wheel is off a -47 it is one of the fromt ones. Has there been more info put out on this?
    I am not happy unless I am miserable

    polishshooter
    Senior Chief Moderator Staff
    Posts: 1966
    (10/23/01 10:17:05 pm)
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    Yeah, the pentagon spokesman today confirmed a 47 lost a wheel when it hit something after taking off but made it back OK with no casualties, no other damage, in fact at the press conference, had a 47 SpecOps pilot who said it's not uncommon to return with tree branches and stuff in the gear during a hot extraction on goggles.

    There were two seperate wheels, but only one strut in the Taliban video, so I'd think it was a front one too....
    We must make war as we must; not as we would like. - Field Marshal Kitchener, 1915

    Edited by: polishshooter at: 10/23/01 11:18:07 pm

    warpig883
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    Posts: 875
    (10/24/01 8:10:45 am)
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    That is strange. The front end is always higher than the back in takeoff and landing. There is also obviously sheetmetal/frame damage to the aircraft. Tree branches are nothing new that is true. I have seen many a helicopter get holes punches in the belly after landing in a clearing that had a stump or other debris hidden in the tall grass.

    But for the front wheels and strut to be ripped off would mean moving forward at a pretty good speed and hitting something very solid. But the thing is IF the front wheels hit then stuff behind them would hit also, because the front end is higher. Unless they did it in level flight and not on takeoff or landing. They could have done it while flying NOE and caught it on the top of a truck or something.

    These things are attatched to the airframe very solid and are not meant to come off. Sounds like those guys had a wild ride.
    I am not happy unless I am miserable

    polishshooter
    Senior Chief Moderator Staff
    Posts: 1971
    (10/24/01 9:16:16 am)
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    Pig, I saw another Taliban video last night, and there were THREE wheels...a double set and a single, so it looks like they got front and back on one side...

    And yeah, it was a solid hit, the pentagon said it hit a "barrier or wall..."

    I don't know, 8000 hp could pull them though a pretty big obstruction if the gear got hung up, wouldn't it?
    We must make war as we must; not as we would like. - Field Marshal Kitchener, 1915

    Edited by: polishshooter at: 10/25/01 9:09:16 pm

    warpig883
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    Posts: 881
    (10/24/01 6:43:15 pm)
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    The thing is when you hit something with one side the aircraft would want to dip or yaw that way depending on how it was hit. And being that close to the ground I'll bet when the aircraft tipped upon impact the tips of those 100ft rotor blades were dang close to the ground. Those struts are made to collapse upward upon impact. They way they must have been ripped off the front one would have done some fuel tank damage and the back hydraulics. They are very tough aircraft. Those guys must have been cooking right along. What an adventure!!!!!!! I got to get back in Aviation!!
    As long as an engine is running and the blades stay in synch (five tranmissions) they will fly.

    As we used to say 2 burnin' and 6 turnin' take her up Sir.
    I am not happy unless I am miserable

    polishshooter
    Senior Chief Moderator Staff
    Posts: 1985
    (10/25/01 8:17:52 pm)
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    Well Pig they got 53s in Afghanistan/Pakistan also, sound like old fashioned Jolly Greens though...

    The chopper that took fire in Pakistan when it went to recover the downed S/R Blackhawk that the two Rangers died in was an AF 53.

    I'm STILL wondering if that deal actually happened the way they said, in Pakistan, or on the other side of the border, and SECOND, why RANGERS in a Blackhawk for SR???

    Isn't that a job for Beanies in the PaveLows? Or at least Air Commandos in Jollies?

    I'd just BET the 'hawks were doing some short range Ranger insertions of their own on the Afghan side...

    You'd think there would have been a HELLUVA lot more excitement of a US bird taking and returning fire from inside of PAKISTAN if that actually happened...

    Disinformation, anyone?
    We must make war as we must; not as we would like. - Field Marshal Kitchener, 1915

    warpig883
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    Posts: 894
    (10/25/01 8:42:14 pm)
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    Yeah the Rangers play that game also. You can bet every division commander is kissing butt to get his troops in on the action. I can pretty much garrantee that every aircrew (Army Aviation I mean)is on edge waiting to get into the shit also.

    Disinformation is a wonderful thing, keeps everyone guessing.
    I am not happy unless I am miserable
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