How long to build a modern combat aircraft.

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In an idle moment, I was wondering how long it took to build something like a Typhoon or an F-35, from scratch ? This was after watching a documentary on the Wellington at the weekend, which included the film of the 24hr build. During WWII we were able to build aircraft fairly quickly to replace the large number of combat losses. I imagine it would take considerably longer now ?
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I think this is actually down to two different components: - How long does it take to produce the aircraft from scratch - At what rate can they be produced I think a starting point might be to look at the Long-lead items. IIRC the long lead items for the last batch of F/A-18E/Fs are due to be ordered about now, for final completion around the end of 2015, which is 18 months away. Of course, this is in peacetime, so if push comes to shove this might be increased significantly, but we're still looking at months.

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What you'd need to determine is the component with the longest lead time. That would pretty much define all.

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It takes 18 months to get a raw forging or casting. Machining to final dimensions, passivation and paint adds to that time. Then it has to be assembled into the airplane. 12 months to get a bolt blank, which is machined to final form, heat treated, passivated and quality checked. 12 months to get the body for an electrical connector, and additional time to add the inserts, backshell, collar, markings and quality check.
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I think the imminent threat of war would triple the pace.

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It takes 18 months to get a raw forging or casting. Machining to final dimensions, passivation and paint adds to that time. Then it has to be assembled into the airplane. 12 months to get a bolt blank, which is machined to final form, heat treated, passivated and quality checked. 12 months to get the body for an electrical connector, and additional time to add the inserts, backshell, collar, markings and quality check.
Either your being sarcastic or by those timescales it would take years for one plane to get built. It all depends on mobilisation times. Second industry to a war economy and you can up production. However I think the bottleneck would be the electronics rather than the steel. IMHO I think the composites could also be a limiting factor.
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Designing an aircraft on paper and through 3D CAD is the easy part. Sure it may look cool on the computer screen but to actually build it right and test it over and over for stress and durability is another matter. You got to put through the wind tunnels and then after, you got to actually build the thing. Even for the experienced nations with the metallurgy know how and the knowledge to build engines, for them it'll take at least a decade from the ground up to design a new engine. China will get there someday and India after many years of failure with the loss of money, she is still clueless on that matter. In the end its no easy, in 24 hours a small team of engineers might just be able to build a miniature RC Drone in the machine shop and with already available OEM parts, but a full scale modern aircraft is just not happening. :very_drunk:

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Sorry, I should have been specific. I didn't mean from design to fly, more along the lines of all of the various components being available and ready to assemble.

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It takes 18 months to get a raw forging or casting. Machining to final dimensions, passivation and paint adds to that time. Then it has to be assembled into the airplane. 12 months to get a bolt blank, which is machined to final form, heat treated, passivated and quality checked. 12 months to get the body for an electrical connector, and additional time to add the inserts, backshell, collar, markings and quality check.
Well, if that is the standards in your piece of lands, I shld redraw my placards in your language. I know that ppl tends to think that what might looks complex is obviously complicated, but actually for most of it, it is not. Think about a plate of spaghetti. Complicate , intricate, tortuous but rather simple in fact. A plane is rather as complicated as my spaghetti (choose your own type of pastas and sauce's flavor to fit your own idea). What turned it complex is more the stray of corporatism that have hijacked the industry starting in the 90's.

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So around 3 years from order to delivery if we assume that all parts are freshly produced after the order is placed.

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Understand that the Cold War, and the urgency it brought to the weapon build cycle, is long past. The feeder industries which provide the components for weapon systems downsized dramatically. They cannot build components quickly.
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Well, if that is the standards in your piece of lands, I shld redraw my placards in your language. I know that ppl tends to think that what might looks complex is obviously complicated, but actually for most of it, it is not. Think about a plate of spaghetti. Complicate , intricate, tortuous but rather simple in fact. A plane is rather as complicated as my spaghetti (choose your own type of pastas and sauce's flavor to fit your own idea). What turned it complex is more the stray of corporatism that have hijacked the industry starting in the 90's.
ok, tnx for the clarity :rolleyes:
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Bet I could assemble a flying combat aircraft in a week..it is not supersonic nor does it have a radar nor missiles no e-seat. It is all about what it can do...good aeroplanes today take time and money to build.

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Final assembly is fast compared to the time for long lead parts from feeder industries.

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ok, tnx for the clarity :rolleyes:
Aaarff, not my best post...