C-27J Reemerges Despite AF’s Boneyard Plans

C-27J Reemerges Despite AF’s Boneyard Plans

The Air Force is set to discard 21 C-27Js before the end of fiscal year 2013, yet service officials still issued a request to industry on May 10 for proposals to purchase even more of the same exact aircraft that will likely sit in the boneyard.

The C-27J Spartan is the cargo aircraft that has found itself in the middle of a battle between the Air Force’s active duty and the Air National Guard. Active duty leaders have said the service likes the aircraft, but can’t afford it with the forthcoming budget cuts. Guard leaders have responded saying the aircraft will save the service money and the Guard, which was set to receive the bulk of the fleet, is being unfairly targeted to absorb the brunt of the service’s budget cuts.

Congress has for the most part taken the Guard’s side in the debate. Lawmakers have ordered the service to consider buying more C-27Js even though the service is set to follow through on plans to send the C-27J fleet to the service’s boneyard at Davis Monthan Air Force Base, Ariz., with the 309th Aerospace Maintenance And Regeneration Group. There the aircraft will sit in storage unless another federal agency claims them.

The original plan was to field a fleet of 38 C-27Js across the service as part of the Joint Cargo Aircraft Program. Already, the Air Force has 15 C-27Js stationed at Guard bases and another two at Waco, Texas, at a L-3 Communications plant. Four more are on the books to be built by Alenia Aermacchi in Italy and sent to the U.S. in fiscal year 2013. Those newly built aircraft will likely be sent directly to the boneyard.

The Air Force spent about $1.6 billion to purchase the 21 aircraft. Soon after the first C-27Js arrived in Afghanistan in 2011 to start resupplying deployed Army units, the Air Force said it could no longer afford the luxury of the aircraft.

Air Force leaders had said the sustainment costs were too expensive to keep the C-27J when compared to the C-130. Former Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Norton Schwartz told Congress in 2012 it cost $9,000 per hour to fly the C-27J and $10,400 to fly the C-130. Even though the C-130 was slightly higher per hour, the C-130 is well established within the fleet and the Air Force couldn’t afford to introduce and sustain the C-27J.

“In response to a requirement in the FY12 NDAA to perform a cost-benefit comparison of the C-27J and C-130, the AF performed an exhaustive analysis which included a direct comparison of cost, capability and capacity of like-sized C-130 and C-27J units,” Ann Stefanek, an Air Force spokeswoman, said. “The results of this analysis clearly demonstrated a lower life-cycle cost for the C-130 versus the C-27J.”

The Ohio Air National Guard, which is one of four Guard units that fly the C-27J, had cost estimates of their own. Officials with the Ohio Guard said it cost $2,100 per hour to fly the C-27J and $7,000 per hour to fly the C-130.

Congress ordered the Air Force within the 2013 National Defense Authorization Act to form a working group and add 32 strategic airlifters. Lawmakers did not specify that those airlifters be C-27Js and Air Force Secretary Michael Donley said it’s unlikely the service will keep the Spartan fleet alive.

However, the request issued on May 10 appears to be an attempt by service officials to show Congress that the service considered buying more C-27Js. Stefanek issued a statement in response to questions from Military​.com.

“The Mobility Directorate (AFLCMC/WL) is contemplating procurement of C-27J aircraft, in accordance with Congressional language that states ‘the Secretary of the Air Force shall obligate and expend funds previously appropriated for the procurement of C-27J Spartan aircraft for the purposes for which such funds were originally appropriated,’” Stefanek wrote in an email to Military​.com.

Notably, the request from the Mobility Directorate stated the Air Force would not “reimburse participants for any information or expenses associated with their participation in this survey.” The Sources Sought Synopsis stated that the Air Force Life-Cycle Management Center is “conducting market research to identify potential sources that possess the expertise, capabilities, and experience to manufacture and deliver C-27J aircraft.”

Meanwhile, airmen continue work to transport the first 21 C-27J Spartans to the boneyard.

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Offer them to the Army. The service that asked for them in the first place and who believed the Air Force when it said they would fly them for the Army…

Not surprising the pork wasting military will buy planes just to scrap. Instead maybe buy more C-130Js?

The navy needs a new COD aircraft correct? This would appear to be an ideal use for the spare planes, as they appear to be just the right size and weight for a carrier. This also excuses the relatively high costs per pound compared to other planes like the C-130, as unlike most land bases, carriers have very fixed size limitations.

Sounds very much like the Army’s transfer of the Caribou to the Air Force, which the Air Force then chose to trash. It’s all about an Air Force Rice Bowl to keep the Army from getting too many fixed wing aircraft.

Offer the aircraft, free of charge, to the Coast Guard. They are the most budget-constrained.

I really can’t believe this. They fought tooth and nail to keep the Army from getting these and now they say they want to scrap them.

Not only that, they cancelled this for the Afghan AF, not that I care about them much.

I don’t understand how they put themselves in this position. That was very greedy.

Here we go again. Congress cuts the budget for DOD; and then, has them waste money on weapons DOD said they don’t want or need. Another prime example is the M1 tank. Congress needs to keep out of the way the money is spent, but they won’t. The biggest waste in DOD is congressional “PORK”! The “NIMBY’s” could care less about the military! They only want to bring home the bacon to their districts! If DOD wants another BRAC; then congress should le them do it!

The air force leaders want full control of airlift assets. Think about it people, the C-130 is built by Lockheed-Martin, an American manufacturer that employees many retired USAF general officers who still posses lots of lobbying power in the halls of HQ Air Mobility Command and the Pentagon. The C-27J is built by Alenia, an Italian manufacturer that does not employee these retired generals. So who do you think is going to get the business?

The C-27J has amazing capability, and despite the inflated operating costs the sir force has produced, will find a home. Whether it’s with the Forestry Service, Coast Guard, or whoever, someone will benefit with this aircraft. The air force will continue wasting the taxpayers dollars by deploying larger C-130s to haul one or two pallets into the “Last Tactical Mile” and also levy that cost onto the army who has to use the expensive CH-47s to do the same. But look on the bright side, some air force general has ensured him/herself a chair on the board of Lockheed-Martin?

Funny thing is, initially it WAS the Army Guard who wanted C-23 Sherpa replacements, prior to the C-27J boondoggle that the USAF screwed-the-pooch on.
Now, the Army Guard is still stuck maintaining high-mileage Sherpas and still no suitable fix is in sight.

Army (not just Guard) is well aware that USAF just cannot be relied upon to reliably be available when Army has air transport concerns.
USAF doesn’t want the C-27J fleet EXCEPT when it becomes obvious that Army/Army Guard would gladly take them off the USAF’s hands.
Can’t be having Army air jocks showing up the USAF that ground pounders can fly cargo aircraft just as capably.

The USCG doesn’t need another airframe in the logistics when they’re quite satisfied with their CN 235-based HC-144 fleet, an aircraft (CN 235) that was quite suited to replace the Army Guard’s aging Sherpas,
until the USAF got involved screaming of cost-saving commonalities between the C-27J and C-130J types.


No, it isn’t greed, but moreso bad/inept leadership.
Personnel incapable of effective management being put in charge of managing programs and people.
If you’ve ever sat thru long-winded briefings by too many senior staff on any given day, at times it’s almost scary that there are people in these leadership positions with the level of ~questionable mentality~ that some of these leaders possess.

Scares me to think I must trust the safety of my children and theirs to these kinds of people making our nation’s strategic decisions for the future.

Those planes are not marinized nor suitable for carrier takeoffs and landings. This is why there are AF and Navy versions of the JSF and the cost of conversion is not worth it.

I totally agree, an Army version of the HC-144 would really have been a logical choice to replace the C-23. A proven platform with a decent improvement of capabilities over the C-23.

One of the biggest problems the Army faced when the Army started it’s movement toward the multi-mission tactical transport (then envisioned to replace both the C-23 & RC-12) was the complete lack options within the criteria desired, that were still being built.

I think at this point the Army should just replace the C-23s on at least a 1-for-1 basis with CASA C-212(400) Aviocars. They are not a capable as the Sherpas, but they have certainly proved themselves through contractor usage over the past decade. And, they would at least reduce some of the workload facing the Army’s helicopter fleet.

Which is why the Army Air Corps should have never turned into the USAF. A bunch of “language” differences and much less of a “joint” effort. Add in the flag rank squabbling and money wasted on different uniforms, redundant programs and the like, and its shocking that the Air Force was never consolidated back into the Army.

Not only should these C-27J be returned to the Army, but It is also well beyond time to lift restrictions on the Army flying fixed wing aircraft with forward firing weapons.

The C-27J could be converted to a KAC-27J intra-theater cargo transport that could be made to be modular configurable to provide close air support ground attack and also tanker refueling service for Army helicopters. Modular weapons systems could be removed to reduce weight when not needed.

Further outside the box… Patria’s NEMO lightweight stabilized 120mm mortar turret works well on the little Finnish Marine Alucraft Watercat M12 patrol boat, and might work similarly well on the roof of a KAC-27J. That would provide a rapid reponse standoff fire support weapon capable of sending 120mm precision guided mortar munitions. It delivers 10 rounds per minute, and is capable of firing at low angles, not just the conventional high angles of mortar fire.


Seen the first of many already here at the boneyard. Damn shame too. Remember those laser equipped 747’s with the ability to shoot down missles? Here as well. I remember when the Air Force was proud of it’s airlift capabilities. Now…I dont know. Im ex Air Force and dont like the direction it’s taking. I say let the Army have the C-27’s…at least it wont sit here in the desert gathering dust , and making a new home for the coyotes and bobcats.

Ahhh, yes, and we should get rid of the Navy since the Army already has more ships… If you think the Army does Air Power as well as the USAF, you have no idea what it actually takes to operate at a high level in the domain.

You are so far outside the box, that you have landed in ignorant.
Mortars fire a relatively slow moving low velocity ballistic projectile. The rounds would simply not be able to compete with opposing forces encountered when fired from an aircraft.

Army helicopters, aside from the relative few special application aircraft, do not possess in-flight refueling capability. The Army does not desire, or require a tanker aircraft.

Kellogg & Dirt Dart — FYI The Army originally wanted the C-295 but opted for the more expensive 27J because the Air Force wanted compatability with the C130. Then the Air Force got ALL the aircraft instead of a portion and is now mothballing the plane. http://​www​.defenseindustrydaily​.com/​j​o​i​n​t​-​c​a​r​g​o-a

Greedy is a nice word for it.

If I recall, part of the Air Force sticking point for the C-27J was the ability to load a HMMWV. Which was never a requirement requested by the Army. I still think that had the program grow to a “Joint” project, the Army would have settled for a smaller aircraft, that would have better matched to original intra-theater logistic/electronic warfare common platform originally envisioned.

Amos and Nemo are not your grandad’s mortar, rather are breech loaded turreted mortar systems, capable of use at conventional high angle indirect fire, down to low angle direct fire. Amos is the heavier twin barrel, and Nemo is the lighter single barrel. The 120mm mortar has a 480 m/s muzzle velocity, with range of 10km from the ground vehicle, fast enough and far enough to be useful as a standoff ground attack weapon. Firing from higher altitude would extend range. On the Watercat, NEMO can fire stabilized from the moving small patrol boat, and should be able to do similarly from a slow flying aircraft, as has been done with howitzer from an AC-130. If PGMM GPS corrected precision guided mortar munitions are used, it should not be difficult to get the mortar fires on target.

Don’t think the Air Force should be placed back in the Army, Airpower isn’t the Army’s forte or role but loosely defining “airpower” as anything fixed wing is bogus. The intratheatre lift obstructionism is ridiculous as the C27J debacle has demonstrated as well as fixed wing CAS limitations.

The Army doesn’t feel threatened when the Air Force buys armored vehicles or places troops on the ground to assist with the delivery of ordnance. One is always more responsive when it’s your buddy’s butt on the ground in risk also.

There’s a lesson there.

As a mechanic currently working on the C-27J, I can tell you that this is a bad ass acft. It can do anything a C-130 can do and do better. Our only issue is Alenia, the OEM. If we could get our parts from “off the shelf”, instead of having to worry about the planes being under warranty, we would be in a lot better shape. Who ever gets these planes will be very happy with them!

That’s why the USMC has their own organic air support.

Howitzers are fired from the sides, not from the top. /That/ hasn’t been done yet.

Testing it would require getting an “extra” C-130 (since we have no C-27s, coughcough), cutting a hole into the roof and putting a turret, turret ring and mounting systems, and perhaps reinforcement of the airframe around the turret. Fire it a few dozen or hundred times while the aircraft is on the ground. Fly it around for a few weeks or months. Then attempt to fly while firing at the same time and see what happens. There are good odds that reinforcing the structure of the aircraft while firing increases weight and causes center of gravity issues, since floors are intended to be load-bearing whereas roofs are not.

For obvious reasons, the mortar can’t engage close targets, and probably has a large dead zone below the aircraft (but that isn’t a total deal-killer. The other question is if flying from an aircraft allows it to hit targets it could not hit otherwise, especially with GPS-guided rounds. Firing from altitude would give it greater range than a ground-emplaced mortar. Friendly aircraft are already displeased when you mix tube artillery and mortars in the same airspace. Though I suppose with a more sophisticated fire control system, one could slave the turret to a GPS coord and drop consistent fire on it versus having to circle a point target.

“We have no money for C-27s, but we do have money for C-130s”

Would they fill a role on assisting forest fires efforts.

There’s a lesson there also…


Can it carry 8 pallets of cargo?

Jcross: not a bad application for the bird 2 replace the aging “greyhounds”?

Zimm…I think those few at the texas air guard base a (L3) will be outfitted for border patrol or DHS missons, or DEA opns in the southwest.

Jase: correct on the board part & spot on with respect to the aircrafts performance & potential. The puzzle palace masters are to blame for the mis-mgmt of this program.

DK: short of the wiki post, I reviewed a policy paper on supply states ARNG units with these very capable birds. The orig. plan was that they were to be a CONUS based aircraft to support ARNG opns in times of emer. a la Katrina & log missions in CONUS in support of both ANG & ARNG missions for “light” log support, as not to resort to larger c-130 types. And ur spot on about the C-23B & C-23C, their a perfect replacement for those aircraft as well.

Retired:another brac in the hands of congress! .…..they can’t even perform their constitutional requirements …like a budget. I think giving that power to out esteemed ‘Elected Officals” would be a disaster, with the end user i.e. the DOD being the biggest loser!

spot on, had the oppurtunity to fly numerous times in them. The pilots love’d em. I can’t comprehend the present policy of boneyarding such a small, albeit capable airframe in certain mission/conditions. Hopefully someone will wake up & return to the original distribution plan for these aircraft!

“The air force will continue wasting the taxpayers dollars by deploying larger C-130s to haul one or two pallets into the ‘Last Tactical Mile’ and also levy that cost onto the army who has to use the expensive CH-47s to do the same.”

“Expensive CH-47s”? By whose accounting?

The article represents the C-27J as costing $9000 per flight-hour. Whereas the CH-47D is under $6800 per flight-hour.

The C-27J requires that a field-expedient strip be constructed, of a minimum length. Building such, in places like the hinterlands of Afghanistan, is costly and nontrivial. And in some locations, totally impossible. Field-expedient strips are cheap where a bulldozer is easily to hand. This situation does not obtain in many places. Especially not in the hinterlands of Afghanistan.

Whereas a CH-47 can easily deliver huge amounts of cargo in an unimproved area considerably smaller than its own rotor footprint.

The basic Vertol design is a magnificent relic. Not yet surpassed. Probably not to be surpassed before the invention of practical antigravity.

The (US) Army has more than enough armed helicopters and UAVs (UAS now), and considerably more ground launch systems (tube artillery– cannon/howitzers and mortars, and missile systems), enough of them that Army does NOT need a cargo aircraft converted into gunship role.

If they were that desperate for aerial gunnery platforms that helicopters weren’t capable of doing, you’d think they would first try putting an M230 (30mm Chain Gun) belly turret under an MC-12 derivative.
USMC years ago had a derivative of the AH-1 Cobra’s 3-barrel 20mm belly-turreted in an OV-10 variant, and if an Apache can handle the M230 turret, a C-12-sized fixed wing airframe could accomodate it just as well.

Two words would be power hungry or turf war, none of which have anything to do with getting the mission accomplished but then again neither does the AF leadership.

Currently the only suitable Greyhound replacement is a Greyhound upgraded with the 8-blade props that are going into E-2Ds…Newer engines wouldn’t hurt, either.

being talked about here, thought I saw one in thePatuxent a while back…

The C 212 would be a step backwards from the C-23. Much slower, lower cargo capacity and range. Might as well use Chinooks.

Yes, I’m well aware the Army favored the C 295: its cargo floor was longer than the CN235 (predecessor of the 295), allowing more cargo pallets: bulk/palletized cargoes was Army’s primary concern.
Orignial Army requirements were never about hauling Hummvees or JLTVs with the JCA: that was ~volunteered~ upon them by USAF as well as the C-27J manufacturers.

Defense Industry Daily website has multiple very long and informative multi-year threads on the JCA program.

C’mon, man you are making too much SENSE!!!! You can’t expect bobble headed career military REMF’s, politicians or lazy civil service employees to actually get off their duff to save the country some money.

to paul:
“It can do anything a C-130 can do and do better…”

Shill. :-P
Seriously, you expect us to believe the C-27J can outrange and outhaul a C-130, on only two of the same 4 engines the C-130 has?
Maybe, just maybe, if the notional C-130 you’re comparing your over-glorified C-27J to is
an early C-130A, B, C type, prior to the newer J-Herc builds.

We’re not buying it (your comparison).

It’s not about buying more C130’s, it’s about keeping the money in the F-35 budget. They’ll do anything to keep that including kmilling every other program in the force. They did the same thing with the F/EF-111 in the middle 90’s. Just days after full digital cockpit upgrades, they sent them to the boneyard, to save their precious 300 plus F-22 fleet. How’d that work out… They tried the same to the A-10 but were midnight hour stopped by the Congress and rightfully so. The A-10 can knife fight down low with Tangos, the F-35 has to fly at 30K feet to keep their avionics cool and drop the odd SDB with GPS targets pulled up on their IPAD GPS…

The relationship of the Marines with the Navy seems far better than the Army’s relationship with the Air Force.

The conversions are also quite irreversible. Our modern fiscally-minded military should look at the Marines and the more pragmatic Harvest Hawk; though you are correct in that we have plenty of fire support options /on paper/. In practice, fire support available to the troops is a function of what is in the area; and there’s always a chance of operating beyond the range of tube artillery or in an environment where greater accuracy is required (though more GPS-guided rounds will mitigate this).

Perhaps the money spent on the C-27’s is better invested in the CH-47 fleet? Or, LTM delivery simply soaks up all the available CH-47’s, in which case the solution is more CH-47’s.

When we compare C-27 and CH-47’s for delivery of goods, is the assumption that the CH-47 is carrying external or internal?

Forest Service has been using a mix of old aircraft and borrowed Guard/Reserve aircraft for a while. They use the MAFFS on a pallet, which goes onto a C-130. I’m not sure if it would fit in a C-27.

There’s a funny story of how the USFS was hoodwinked into letting go of C-130A’s given to it by DoD in exchange for crappy museum piece –119’s as trade, and the –130’s were sold for parts and to drug dealers. Think it happened under Obama? Nope, late ‘80s.

As of ’96, the DoD can sell excess aircraft for airtanker ops. Between buying –130’s that are well known and the –27…why buy the 27?

There is no comparison between the C-130 and C-27. C-130 is built in the U.S, C-27 in Italy. You want jobs here or there?

Sounds just like a battle between PING and PONG???? Slaphappy paddles.….

This aircrafts current status is nothing more than a local employment program to buy votes for congressional representatives.

C27J will not work for the Navy to take off & land on carriers a plane must be beefed up and lots of changes to get a plane too take the shaking and the trowing from a steem catapult. If the plan is a great hauler and short take off the Coast Guard would be a better fit. It would also need a lot of lift and probably still a little more beefing witrh the CG, also speed might be a factor. The C130 being used in 4 of the 5 services might be the best choice since the services could also borrow from one another in some emergencies.

By the same token, there’s also always a chance that inclement weather, mountainous terrain, and the adversary’s potential threat weapons (any credible AA in the area?) severely restrict, even negate entirely, the use of gunship aircraft.

Hell, there is no part of the C-130 that’s built in the US. It is assembled here, but built overseas. It’s no more “American” than those Airbus airplanes that will roll off the assembly line in Mobile, Alabama.

I heard a rumor that the C-27 will replace the Air Force’s V-22’s. It does everything better and can land almost anywhere the V-22 can as far as the Air Force is concerned (they don’t have any carriers, so that’s not a factor for them).

C-27 is built here. The Alenia aircraft are built in Italy.

Betting Glock and H&K have factories here just to collect American dollars from the “Buy American” policy. Don’t like foreign weapons? Better send back the Penguin, the Harrier, Carl Gustav and the M-249; and I’ve only just begun.

Edit: The C-27 would’ve been built out of FL and MS.

In which case, the only option left is ground-based fire support, until the adversary gets counterbattery radar.

I suppose that’s why AC-130’s; which while very cool aircraft, will disappear from any battlefield where opponents could have a MANPAD or a 12.7mm machinegun. We’ll just pick off guys with AKM’s and RPG’s.

d. — Agree with many of your comments except when you say the Army has enough.

We don’t know. The Army can’t even ask and while arty, uavs, attack helos are great there are some inherent advantages to fixed wing air. Those being speed of deployment, endurance and efficiency (attk helos generally don’t carry as or have the endurance of fixed wing counterparts).

Finally an nonpermissive environment for fixed wing is evenless permissive for helos that fly slower, lower and don’t glide well :)

The Coast Guard is ready to intercept them before they even make it to Arizona.

No one has made the case for why the Air Force’s numbers are better than the guys that fly the airplane. In fact the fellas that fly the C27J accused the Air Force of using C130 planning factors for an airplane that doesn’t need them e.g. personnel, maintenance etc. http://​www​.dodbuzz​.com/​2​0​1​2​/​0​3​/​1​9​/​t​h​e​-​a​i​r​-​f​o​r​c​e-n

If one uses the numbers of the guys that fly the plane, a little over $2k makes it three times more efficient to use a C27J (note: depending how you count flying hour the CH47 can be $11k which would make the C27J five times as efficient.). Also the C27J isn’t necessarily flying to a newly built remote airfield. That’s still the CH47’s forte. The fact is the C27J is needed to do the short haul critical cargo mission that the CH47 will be used for in a pinch (on the Army’s dime) or as the article I cited mentions,

“But Lohrer adds more to the story that the Air Force doesn’t like to talk about: The U.S. has spent hundreds of millions of dollars in Afghanistan on contract airlift support, hiring small aircraft for local resupply and other missions. Why, if the Air Force has enough airlift capacity, does it need to spend all the extra money to outsource transport? In fact, Lohrer argues, if DoD used that money to buy more C-27Js, it could accomplish the tasks and own new airplanes ready for a life of service, at a greater long-term value.”

Numbers reference…

Sen Rob Portman (R – Ohio) seized on Odierno’s statements to criticize the Air Force for failing to consider the money C-27s save when compared to older aircraft.

“The C-27 does it for $2,100 per hour, the CH-47 does it for about $11,000 per hour, the C-130 does for between $5,100 to $7,100 an hour — so from a taxpayer perspective, the C-27 not only allows you to land on smaller air strips, it’s saving the taxpayer money,” Portman said. He wants to make sure the Pentagon isn’t pulling a capability out of theater that meets a requirement. “I have never seen the military do this before.” http://​www​.dodbuzz​.com/​2​0​1​2​/​0​3​/​0​9​/​c​s​a​-​p​r​a​i​s​e​s​-​doo

Horses for courses. Helicopter gunships don’t have the loiter time or range of AC-130 gunships. Regardless that, the small fleet of AC-130 have witnessed high demand in this century, seem to be bringing something of value to the fight.

Either of those options sound good. It seems to be a pretty good platform. You can still smell that new car smell on them.

Steve W…too late, some are already here.

Suffice to say, the US, at least as of late (last quarter century)
appears to have decided NOT to fight such near-peer adversaries,
but rather go “seal clubbing” against opponents who are considerably technologically inferior.

Ain’t sayin’ insurgencies aren’t effective: they’ve kept us tied in multiple locations for a decade.
But still, makes for a helluva weapons proving ground under real-time conditions.
(be a different story though if US actually had to use all its materiel against a nearer-peer adversary…)

There is no C-27J there. Maybe C-27A’s.

NO it can’t. However, when i was active duty, i seen enough C-130’s flying around with less than a full load of cargo. The C-27J would be a lot more efficient than a C-130 carrying less then a full load and turning 4 motors. If Lockheed and Alenia were till partners, the USAF would have 100 plus of these planes. So the argument that the C-130 is the better acft is only politics. Nothing more!

The C-27J was not created to be an ocean crossing airliner, it was designed to be the intra-theatre airlift the army needed. And in that respect, it can do anything the C-130 can do and do it cheaper.

Maj, if the C27 is such a great deal, and the “study” done by an Ohio ANG Captain was so convincing, why did Congress relent and allow the AF to get rid of the fleet? Why did Sen Portman suddenly stop beating the C27 drum if the C27 saved the taxpayer money?? I think savvvy Hill watchers will tell you that something changed…when the AF made a deal to replace the Ohio C27s with C130s, all of a sudden Sen Portman could care less about the flying hour cost of the C27. It is, and always was, a jobs program for the ANG. That’s the dirty reality of the situation, and it has nothing to do with the C27’s capabilty or cost. Do the link… http://​www​.dispatch​.com/​c​o​n​t​e​n​t​/​s​t​o​r​i​e​s​/​l​o​c​a​l​/​201

The C-27J is perfect for the US Coast Guard’s needs as a Maritime Patrol aircraft, Transport and medevac of far flung locations. Their are curtain AOR’s that can use the C-27J such as Cape Cod, Hawaii, Alaska, Puerto Rico and in the Gulf Coast. The US Coast Guard should have a talk with the USAF on snapping up those C-27J’s

Not if you have enough C130s to meet the requirment. If that is the case, spending money on C27s is a waste, and waste is not cheaper.

That’s a cargo scheduling and prioritization problem. Funny that you say the C130 discussion is driven by politics. The ONLY reason the C27 issue was so thorny was because they were all in the ANG. Had they all been in the active fleet when the AF decided to cut them, if probably would have been a blip on the radar screen. The “politics” surrounding the C27 had little to do wtih who built it…it had to do with who was flying it; the ANG.

You make a good point the Air Force has never tried fielding its own armored divisions or bough its own tanks, just a few armored cars. I think that the Army might feel just a touch threatened if the Air Force ever pulls a Luftwaffe and fields their equivalent of the Hermann Goering Division or dictate that all anti-aircraft, and airborne troops fall under the Air Force.

Funny, the Italian Alenia’s last two CEOs were fired and went to jail over fraud


Well, Alenia North America is also getting gutted.

And a fun tidbit about the Italian capos.

“Calegari’s firing comes amid a tumultuous 24 hours for Alenia and parent Finmeccanica, whose CEO, Guiseppe Orsi, was arrested Tuesday in connection with allegations of corruption at the firm involving the sale of helicopters to India. In addition, Bruno Spagnolini, the head of Finmeccanica helicopter unit AgustaWestland, was placed under house arrest.”

Re Lockheed, Kubasik wasn’t a priest. There’s even historical precedent relating to bribes for Starfighter procurement. For Boeing, there’s the airtanker “business”. Bribes and corruption are part of business. And for business in India, even mighty Bofors dabbled in bribes to sell its wares in India.

Reminds me of the old C-123 I flew in Vietnam back in the day they put a couple jet engines on her and called it a K model and we flew the hell out of them the whole time in country, Cambodia, Laos Thailand and anyplace eles they wanted us to go, hell of a good Airplane keep them flying I say…

C-27 can do vtol? It can hover for a few minutes? It can sling loads?

That I would like to see.

I think its time the people have a vote in what the millitary spends and what they can put in the trash.g
I feel someone is making a lot of money buy suggesting we NEED such and such.
Why are they not made it the US where we need jobs. What ever it costs the american people are paying for them. Let us build them. All military materials should me made in the US We pay for research and development and the manufacturers turn around and sell our technology to MAYBE OUR ENEMY. How can our boys defend themselves against our own technology. BAD MOVE.

Riceball — Apples and Oranges. Divisions can do a myriad of tasks going from low intensity to high tensity warfare. They in effect can do EVERY Army mission (e.g. attack, defend, humanitarian support, COIN, expeditionary force, NEO, border security, symbol of US commitment etc.). CAS specific aircraft cannot. Try establishing air superiority or strategic bombing campaign with A10s. Try deploying a BDE or more with C27’s.

On the contrary armored vehicles pulling local security around an air field or protecting air force personnel while they support the Army or are conducting CSAR are a perfect metaphor for CAS and Army owned intratheatre light airlift aircraft. Neither pose a threat to a branch’s core mission.

BTW, the Air Force has stood up battalions worth of security police which is one of the largest specialties in the Air Force. Not a threat to the Army or its mission and no complaint even as they send members of this force to Ranger school. There are also MANY nations that assign fixed wing aircraft to ground commanders (the Russians for one and the Corps for another)

Just because a Congressman does or doesn’t pursue legislation has no bearing on the validity of an issue. Because Congress stopped pursuing other great legislation like a balanced budget amendment or cut our out of control entitlement programs doesn’t mean it’s not needed. Heck, look at the purchase of M1s?

How about addressing the issue based on the facts and needs of other services besides the Air Force manical need to control all fixed wing?

BTW, why is Congress still buying aircraft and why did Gates (not Congress) move the C27J program from the Army to the Air Force? (Hint: he was an Air Force officer). Not everything is done for the right reasons.

spot on.……an original concept„„„without some reference from a wiki post or an Armed Forces Journal Article.…or Defence News quote.….bravo!

excellent airframe, highly capable for a light mission lift scenario in CONUS, many states RC’s were promised these birds to replace the sherpa’s & to provide for a NORTHCOM “light airlift mission”, but that was lost in the “fog” of what ever MAC had intended.

Golly maj0d: you spend an enormous amount of time trolling reports, testimonies and for “an Infrantry Officer! “u have a unlimited amount of knowledge about army aviation, and all sorts of polices & opns of all types! I talked to a to a few rotor heads today at the AFD luncheon, 0–6 types with multiple deployments, some even to the puzzle palace themselves, in fact the Supt. of the USCGA (a 2 star) even mentioned aviation concerns, but not 2 your level of knowledge. U know what Will, they can’t hold a candle to you.….I gotta give credit to where its due, I was wrong… lets attend the USMA graduation together, maybe I’ll even get a few VIP seats, wouldn’t be a long drive 4 a ny guy like u, I’m a NYC’er myself born & raised! Went to a church right across the St. from Mr. Gotti & his friend Mr Gravano. I’ll bring that strecher, now that my oldest is back in CONUS for two weeks & we can all sit down & share our experiences…sincerely!.…I will not make u sad by acting stupid, I promise.…..& to your older remark, the 1st one to go,.….well you can set your clock to mine.……my son is eager to met a man of your stature, experience & knowledge.…He can learn alot now that he’s got a break from the “stan” .Just a CAPT, but not just any kind of one if u now what I mean . I’m sure I can get a third ticket.……are u game? you can met Colonels.…..& their fellow Colonel Buddies while we watch that thin grey line march by? Are u game.….honestly, and the cherry on the cupcake is u can met “the non-Colonel!.……game on?.….

Brass: not to be condisending, but that’s kinda been the case 4 the last 50–60 years. I think Ike warned us about it. Just think, cut sub production & one stae is devastated reduce carrier production by one every other cycle & 20K workers hit the streets. If you really look at our country 2 day, proabably 25% of our industrial base is defense related. I remember Gruman Aerospace on L.I. N.Y. They built the LEM.. When the lunar missions stopped about 20% of the work-force was on the street & then the trickle down effect to the sub-contactors.…the same. When the F-14 line was halted, they lost about 40% of the remaining work force, but then the 50 we built for the Shah of Iran that was a reprieve… only temporary though… my dad a B-17 co-pilot spent his whole life working there. I remember “Family Day” a Calverton N.A.S.(?), now just a half empty “industrial park”. So in a nut shell your spot on! We supply the our military with not necessarily the best equipment, but we keep those Defence Contractors busy. I could tell ya about the lunacy of the Navy’s Attack Boat construction program, but the moderators will censor it, its insane the money that is being wasted!.…your spot on. I could say more about he F-14’s too but again, it would be censored!.….. drive on brass!

Bman: I wouldn’t fly in that goony bird for all the tea in China!

Nicky: I agree 1005 .I i said before I was asked to review the deployment plans for these aircraft as a U.S. Army Command & General Staff OfficeR College Exercise. They were mean’t for CONUS use primarily! Its an excellent light xport aircraft & with some iniative could be morphed into a elint bird, rcostal recon, border indirdiction etc. I have no idae why the AF is moth balling these excellent, and adaptable aircraft, it def’s logic!

Good point, we no doubt have the production capacity to build these aircraft ourselves!

Majr0d. I think SECDEF gates having served in the Air Force as a second lieutenant, serving in the Strategic Air Command from 1967 to 1969 didn’t really have a lot 2 do with that decision. He spent most of his career in the covert opns side of our nations defense establishment. I think a man of Mr. Gates accomplishments in the AF 43 years ago didn’t have much to do with a “low level’ decision such as the C27J which originally had a clear mission statement long after his AF service. And as SECDEF I think he had a whole lot more impotant issues on his plate than that aircrafts deployment. I think I smell speculation.….

Got an idea…air farce one. Fit them with some recliners, a couple of beer dispensers, and use them instead of air farce one or the rest of the VIP fleet. Aides and hanger-ons could sit in troop seats on the sides. Even better still dump ll the VIP mini jets, etc. and re equip the fleet with all of them. What a savings. We could contract Southwest airlines to manage the reservations and baggage. What a savings. In addition, just a thought, the spartan accomidations would cut down on the amount of congressional VIP junkets. Oh well just a thought.

You don’t know what you are talking about. There are parts of the C-130 that are made outside the U.S. but the majority is built here.

I did just address the facts. The numbers cited by an amateur analyst ANG officer were dis-proven by the final AF report to the Hill which was, almost in whole, accepted by Congress. That was one reason Portman got out of the bully pulpit. But the main reason he went quiet was because he got his deal…Ohio got C130s, the Guard unit stayed open, and folks kept their jobs. All this despite the fact the AF told Congress they did not need those extra C130s. And…the Army appears to be perfectly fine with the current direct support mission concept of employment agreed to between them and the AF. Seems like a closed case.

You didn’t address the facts. You addressed the politics of the decision, ignored the stats and mischaracterized the Army position. It’s like someone arguing if the law allows it, it’s ethical. Hardly.

I don’t consider air force officers amateur analysts. Uh, who do you think is doing the analysis at the Pentagon? Who do you think approves and presents it? Sounds like active duty Air Force arrogance to me. I also have seen no statements where the hill has “accepted” those numbers. Did you miss in the article where the Air Force is STILL spending money on an airplane it’s going to mothball? If the numbers were accepted, we wouldn’t be buying planes for the graveyard.

Sen Portman’s motivations aren’t the issue. The numbers he presented are and you failed to address “those facts”.

The Army isn’t “fine” with the decision. The Army doesn’t have a vote. Silence isn’t agreement. If you want to see words I’d quote from the same story link I posted earlier and the “facts” you didn’t address:

“Mississippi Republican Sen. Roger Wicker also made a point of asking Army officials about their involvement in the Air Force’s C-27 decision. He expressed concern when Odierno said he learned about the C-27’s demise at a joint meeting between the two services.” Using your treatment of “the facts” we should focus on Sen Wicker’s politics and Ordierno as an “amateur” and ignore the Army wasn’t involved in the decision to scrap the C27J?

Odierno also stated “It’s important for us to sustain air assets dedicated to ground forces,” Odierno said. “The Air Force made the decision; they think they can do this with C-130s. If we get that same support — that is what we need. I would say that this has been supplied very successfully by the C-27.” Seems “if we get the same support” is the most important part and with a drawdown in effect there isn’t much stress on the system until the next war where the Army will do the same thing. Use CH47s. Nice try at portraying that as Army “agreement”.

Portraying officers as amateur analysts, ignoring stats and mischaracterizing Army silence as acquiescence just shows how weak your argument is. You accept what you want, reject what you don’t. Take meaning from inaction and ignore a history of the Air Force attempting to exercise hegemony over anything that flies (in this case intratheatre lift, but we saw it recently with UAVs and it’s been decades long with CAS). You’re a perfect example of the problem.

Hmm…not sure about the pissy tone of your reply, but…here’s the deal. When it comes to buying weapons systems, the politics you discount are very much part of the “facts”. You’ll never see a “statement” that Congress accepted the AF’s position on C27 costs; however, the fact that they are no longer beating the AF up over the issue speaks very loudly. Notice that the article says “Congress ordered the Air Force within the 2013 National Defense Authorization Act to form a working group and add 32 strategic airlifters. Lawmakers did not specify that those airlifters be C-27Js…” Language protecting the C27 was specifically left out; that should tell you all you need to know. As for Sen Wicker…he could now care less if the Army had a vote in the C27 decision–the AF is putting KC-135s back at Meridian so he’s happy. Check out the link…not a lot tears being shed for the C27. http://​meridianstar​.com/​l​o​c​a​l​/​x​2​0​0​2​1​4​6​6​8​1​/​T​a​n​k​ers… . The Chiefs of Staff of the AF and Army have signed agreements on the direct support mission that both seem to be happy with, and the Vice Chiefs have signed off on the concept of execution. That doesn’t sound like “Army silence” to me. Lastly, I saw the Loher report (I doubt you did), and it was based on false assumptions and faulty numbers. For example, he “accused the Air Force of using C130 planning factors for an airplane that doesn’t need them e.g. personnel, maintenance etc.” Well, guess where those numbers actually came from?? That’s right…the ANG. They used the C130 numbers for their initial manpower estimates cause it allowed them to keep more people on the payroll. So yeah, I’ll stick with calling the author an amateur analyst, cause the alternative is harsher. I think it is funny that you get your hackles up over my comment about an ANG O3, yet you consistently characterize all senior AF officers as greedy, deceitful political animals who would screw their fellow service men and women in order to protect their bureaucracy. As for the AF buying C27s and sending them straight to the boneyard…I agree that is completely stupid, but you can call your Congressman over that one, because the NDAA did not give the AF much choice. Peace brother.…

The politics behind why congress does things has never been part of my argument. They are the soul of yours as you continue to mischaracterize Army acquiescence as support.

The Loehrer report isn’t wrong/inaccurate as YOU are saying they padded the initial numbers for payroll (implying the ANG are “greedy, deceitful political animals who would screw their fellow service men and women in order to protect their bureaucracy”. Hypocrisy much?) which doesn’t impact the strength of their argument and final point. The C27J IS cheaper to operate.

I could care less about X congressman’s district. It remains a fact the C27 was an Army project until the Air Force inserted itself. The Air Force went as far as funding testing when Congress wouldn’t appropriate funds for it (just the Army). It subsequently bogarted the whole program, lied about flying the aircraft and the rest is history.

As another poster said, the Caribou all over again and why? Because of branch partisanship which is my issue whomever practices it. Sorry to keep exposing it for what it is, Bro.

whoa JRT!…excellent mission for them!

DK: tell me i’m wrong: greyhound & E-2 are the same airframes?

spot on, thats what the policy of giving them primarily 2 the ANG was for.

you mean “the flying box car” was traded for 130“s? & the 27J’s are excellent intra-theatre aircraft that belong in the ANG! imho

bringin’ home the pork & the flyin’ slots! I don’t need 2 even read your quote (not that its not accur.) its the nature of the “beltway-puzzle palace” alternate reality.… as sorry as it sounds its the way it is & the end users i.e. us (all branches & RC’s) are mostly the losers. Funny though the best veiw of D.C. IMO is from Arlington.

doesn’t the new class of carrier (ford) use a different launch system? not steam powered? The C27J is rugged enough, met a ex-navy pilot who flew for one being converted & was impressed!

C-27J Spartan.….I think thats correct

These aren’t getting scrapped. They are getting put into storage until our government decides it can front the money for operating costs.

majr0d is absolutely correct. From the beginning, the C-27J was supposed to be a plane for Army Aviation…to support the Army’s needs. Army Aviation already has fixed wing aviators that fly C-12s and other fixed wing platforms, and this was intended to provide the Army with a much needed resupply platform in theater. The Army’s resupply workhorse, the CH-47, gets used primarily for resupply to outlying bases that are difficult to resupply by ground. When the CH-47 is used to do runs to larger airfields, it prevents the CH-47s from servicing the smaller outlying bases and outposts that need it most. Additionally, the C-27J can perform aerial drops for Soldiers in the field. It is infuriating that the Air Force fought so hard to keep this aircraft from the Army, then decides to scrap it immediately after they get it. Just goes to show that the Air Force does not always have the best interest of the other services in mind, which is why the Army sought this aircraft from the beginning.

spot on again majrOd! a Army Division can build the atom bomb, construct the Hoover damn, build a bridge, dig the panama canal, create the largest berm/flood mgmt inland water system in the world, & develop a water diversion, storage, & dispersion system for a city below sea level! yup a division can do ANYTHING.…as long as u got enuff Engineers! ha! p.s. I left out their combat capabilities, like reorganize as bullet stoppe.…I mean Infrantry!.

blight good comment, but GPS guided rounds are very vunerable to ECM

JD: or their assigned to each states’ respective ANG! An excellent application for them.

FDD: I think thats a direct hit!

Excellent post!

“You accept what you want, reject what you don’t”, thats your MO!. + the dismissive tone…ur havin’ a bad day..

Bribes are the lubricant of business, the U.S. DOD procurement system not excluded,. unfortunately.

Jack: one problem w/that coa…we have lost industrial capacity in this country. How many on this entire list would believe me if I said we have foreign degreed engineers w/H1B visa’s working on our defense contracts, the shortage in skilled engs. is that great! As far as industrial capacity, lets just say a critical propulsion componet for a certain class of “warship” is made outside of the U.S., giving our potential future enemies, the ability to “calculate” a critical perfromance aspect of this weapons system

I almost thought you were going to talk about Roman legionary engineers, who bridged the Danube and the Rhine.

Send them to the other C-27 operating nations. Australia, Bulgaria, Greece, Italy, Lithuania, Morocco, Mexico, Romania.

On second thought, send them to Australia. They are still in Afghanistan with us, and they may well fly those –27’s for us there.

be nice blight.…u know I was re; the USACE & Army Combat Engineers, but then again the roman engineers were the best of the day, hence their aqueducts & appian way still standing.…..LOL!

& as a P.S., the Army Corps boy’s did bridge the Rhine, so Patton could stand on a float bridge & P*ss in it…Ha!

Let the Forest Service use them for Fire Bombers

There is one C-27J at the boneyard.
I was there on the Boneyard Bus Tour this week
And saw it.

They could have given them to the US Coast Guard for their use and still would be in the DoD hands. The US Coast Guard can use them for curtain AOR’s that have long distance such as Alaska, Guam, Hawaii, Puerto Rico and in the Gulf Coast. They can be used as Maritime patrol Aircraft/ Transport/ SAR Aircraft.

Wasn’t the AV-8B production split starting In August 1981 w/BAE with Aircraft production at McDonnell Dougl@s’ facilities in St. Louis, Missouri, & B@E subin’at their Kingston and Dunsfold facilities in Surrey, England. With 75 percent of engine work going to R@lls-Royce with the remaining 25 percent taken up by Pr@tt & Whitney. This time the Roman Expeditionary Engineers were left with just history of aqueducts & the Appian way.….…LOL!!!! Those d*amn Engineers, always dinkin’ the army needs them just because they wear different buttons, & I thought (its hard 4 me sometimes if I don’t take my Zyprex@..) that the SAW was small lot produced by a company in CT.….. but as said about me b4, I don’t know what I’m talkin about. But I have tickets for West Point graduation on the 25th!

The US Content on C-27J JCA is around 70% (Avionics, ASE, Engines; APU, Equipments)
It is a very good plane but It is not fully US made and It is competing with the C-130 for the tactical missions and for this reason it is hated by a dishonest gang that didn’t hesitate to construct unbelievable reports (even against phisics : two modern engines burn less fuel than 4 old engines) to disqualify the product.
That’s all!


“FN Manufacturing, LLC, located in Columbia, SC, is a precision machining manufacturer specializing in the production of small arms. Our products include the families of M16 rifles, M249 light machine guns, M240 medium machine guns, and FNP pistols.”

Don’t shoot the messenger! I’m just telling you the rumor I heard.

they use the same “improved” engines that the latest version (130H/C-130J) of the herc uses, only two & if not mistaken same avion. package as well!

Speaking of Finmeccanica, they’re also making the diesels for one of the LCS types.

sorry mate, If not mistaken the aussies are pullin’ out of “The Oz” a lttle early than planned, Gillard is katchin hell in the land of Oz for the continued deploy & kia/wia.

Blight…u workin’ 4 FN?

Afghan Air Force was getting the older C-27A, not C-27J. Alenia’s contract was not renewed, and now the AAF are getting neither.

Language about the C-27J was not left out. Congress, in their Fiscal Year 2013 National Defense Authorization Act, had required the Air Force to retain an additional 32 aircraft above the Air Force’s requested numbers, using any combination of C-27J and/or C-130 aircraft at the Air Force’s option. At a press conference held on January 11, 2013, Air Force Secretary Michael Donley said that the Air Force will stand by the original plan to divest its C-27J aircraft, and are looking at how the additional 32 C-130 will be distributed. So rather than keep the new fleet of C-27J, the Air Force will retain 32 old C-130 that they had been looking to dump, older high time crates that were headed to the boneyard, probably in need of expensive overhaul and updates.

Yes C-27J utilize the same avionics and engines of C-130J but USNG C-27J will be replaced by C-130H with old engines and avionics, very hard to believe these planes cost less or are more efficient.

this is the same air force that ordered 18 Global Hawk Block 30 editions, then decides no we do not want them„, waste fraud and abuse is everywhere

excellent point, love that engine tone of the ‘Hog” a ground-pounders love song.…..and that GAU-8 burrrrrrr.……poof, next target GE that that one right

your right Will Rodriguez
With over 20 years as an Infantry officer serving in Europe, the Middle East, Korea and Latin America. you have extensive experience in both light Infantry and mechanized warfare to include combat. You were “selected” as a TAC at West Point and finally assigned to the Infantry’s Battle Lab conducting research on tomorrow’s Infantry force. you hold a Master’s Degree in Counseling & Leadership Development and is a graduate of the Combined Arms General Staff College. Born and raised in a tough section of New York City, Will lost his accent in the Army but kept the attitude. You’ll let that guy know that u know your stuff!! really, you have much more experience than that guy, he has no clue.…. now if majrOd is a cover 4 0–4, & ur a ring knocker + a CG&S grad.…well u must have had that tude p*ss off your senior rater along the way.…..& pray-tell.…what part of NYC u from? wash.heights, corona, s.bronx, e.ny 20+ & only a maj. not a high speed, low drag kinda guy, a M.A. in Counseling & Leadership Development from what, phoenix uni? tell me i’m wrong, because i’m gettin real close.…. but then you’ll put this Professional Engineer on that litter..that’s street punk talk.….I lost that with my education, & not my accent its nuuyorrka .ha! I’m bettin’ yours was , well I won’t go there, a ring knocker with a tude?, got in on a *uota admit thats my take, adios amigo, se ya on saturaday in the VIP section! P.S. I could call in a favor…2 find out more.….but your not worth it. But u need to work on that tude.….I know its hard to fit in sometimes, but try you can do it!

I said language “protecting” the C27 was specifically left out, and I think that is a true statement.

The usual Lockheed crap, depending on the audience.

Glock has a plant close to where Lockheed assembles C-130s. Sad thing is, Lockheed used to manufacture their planes at that facility up until about 2000, then they sold off everything for pennies on the dollar. Same thing happened at Boeing, but years earlier. They are just hollowed out shells now. Don’t make a damn thing, but still rake in the money thanks to the ignorance of the US taxpaying public.

The C-27J has half the engines, carries about half the cargo, lands on softer runways half the length of the C-130, and the cost numbers relationship is $9,000/flt hr. for C-27J and $10,400/flt hr. for C-130!? FUZZY MATH?! There are a lot o missions the C-130 simply cannot do because the risk is too high to let them attempt to land on some runways/landing areas. Efficiency is a good thing and a C-130 with a pallet of cargo, 3 PAX and the mail bags is not an efficient way to support our troops in the field. US Army support is near real time. USAF and USTRANSCOM is support is “96 hours is good enough”. How about them apples. More USAF personnel need to be in foxholes, out of ammo and food, living in the mud, waiting for support to show up in 4-DAYS!!!!!!!

Very well said. Thanks for weighing in.

pete: your assuming logic is a componet of this xfer of aircraft, not performance or operating cost or airframe age, I’m not knockin’ ur post, just the process

CC your 100% correct, 27J have same engines & avionics as 130’s. But tell me the usage by RC’s during the past year in CONUS vs C-130 airframes (aging one’s at that) Their an excellent platform for not only USAR, ANG also DHC, ICE, USCG. Shoot, they could even been evaled for a replacement for CONUS based P-3C’s?
or E2C’s assigned to drug interdiction.

They should be used for fire fighting.

The C-47 refitted with the turbo prop engines would probably equal the C-27’s capacity. But as we all know military intelligence isn’t. The C-47 has demonstrated it’s reliable airframe and who wasted the funds to build the C-27 isnt too hard to figure out

Cut the DoD budget in half and then see what’s important to this hamheaded sociopaths.

“Yes sir , the ad is correct. Our C27Js are real Cream Puffs. only flew on Sundays to church and back. Practically new, in fact the cockpit instruments still have the plastic sheets on them. Yes that’s correct, only $24,995.00 a piece excluding fuel. I’ll be waiting when you get here.”

Why not send them to the Afghanis instead of that $700 million worth of Russian helicopters that Obama bought for them?

Amen to that! Army flew those caribou into tight fields for which it was well-suited. USAF took them away and sent most home. Said they couldn’t/wouldn’t risk flying onto certain strips because they were too dangerous; fields did not meet USAF requirements for acel/stop distance. Fields like Plei Djerang come to mind.

just keep buying the c 130 and forget the Italian plane. we already have personnel and inventory to keep this bird in the air, not the Italian that won’t keep parts in the supply line and leave the plane sitting on the ground due to lack of parts, we should not be buying equipment from anyone other than USA companies PERIOD!!!

what a bunch of nuts we have running the show!!! FUBO! FUBAR!!

The C-130 has been the work horse in both AOR’s there is no comparison between the 2 acft the C-130 can fly faster and carry a much heavier load than the C-27J, in these economic times why the hell would the even consider buying foreign acft?

Make no mistake:

The ANG wants this airplane. The ANG can fly this airplane. The cost to operate this airplane is less than half the cost to operate the C-130; a great airplane in it’s own right.

The ACTIVE DUTY Air Force doesn’t want to loose the F35, the F22 or the NexGen bomber. So, they will do anything (including lying by statistics) in order to save their programs.

BTW: The F22 is estimated to be $16000-$22000 per hour, per plane to operate. Yes, they intercept Cessna’s with them over the Presidential TFR’s.

If you want to see waste, fraud, corruption and stupidity, just look to the active duty Air Force programs, the Congress and the lobbyists.

Oh yeah–why did we send good old USA dollars to Italy to buy the dog-goned things in the first place?


And the Army does have it’s own air support — attack helicopters, no?

quick look shows the C130 can carry 80,000 pounds and the C27J 60,000 (but numbers vary, so…). Using that, the C130 costs 15% more per hour, but carries 30% more.… IF it is carrying max loads…

I seems a waste to let these planes sit in a bone yard a rot away, when the Air National Guard want them. The Air Force feel threaten when another branch of service “encroach” on “Their Territory”…the Air, they think they own the air., thats political. The Army don’t have time for politics when troops lives are on the line. It is the AF job to fly Army troops into combat.…it’s in their charter. But first thing first, You Air Force guys gotta start hitting the frackin target. If the Army need lift, I say they buy their own, and let the AF do whatever it is that the Air Force do.….Now you know why the Army didn’t turn their drone program over to the Air Force.

Ohio Air National Guard stated cost per hour was 2,000 per hour, while the Air Force stated cost per hour as 9,000. Now who rice bowl is being broken. As for a COD who are you kidding the plane couldn’t survive a carrier landing (it’s a controlled crash landing). lol

Jcross: You are a lost ball in high weeds. It is obvious to the most casual observer you have no concept of the requirements of Naval aviation.

Sending brand new A/C to the “Boneyard” is the stupidest thing I have ever heard. What’s wrong with these idiots?

Whoever is doing the testing, are fudging the numbers. The total amounts of cost per hour to fly can be affected by pay load and torque, altitude and turbulence, just to mention a few. Send those aircraft to AFTC Edwards AFB for accurate cost measurement.

“We will compare the costs of leisurely-flying an empty C-130 against a full-speed, full-load C-27. And what do you know…!”

Kind of wish the VXX Kestrels would go to Davis Monathan instead of Canada for parts. But when the cost spirals such that each helicopter costs more than the VC-25’s…?!

mick — it does, because the Air Force would not allow it to fly armed fixed wing aircraft which is a generally more efficient manner of delivering CAS from a physics perspective. It is not more efficient when another branch flies it and has to be coordinated outside the ground commander’s area of influence. This is why the Marines own their CAS and why infantry commanders retain control of mortars their own short range, hip pocket artillery.

That’s a BIG “if”

Sometimes combat doesn’t match your cargo schedule.

something the AF never figured out.
unless its an airshow, then screw efficiency, we have TDY to collect!

Of course senior AF offficers are deceitful.
Schwartz lied through his teeth to Casey.
You can’t debate that fact.

Time to abolish the Air Farce and split the planes up with the Marines getting the fighters and Army everything else.

No they are not completely the same. Try swaping out the flaps.

Hey I know most of the chAIRFORCE doesn’t appreciate the ground pounders, but there are a few of us that have endured the same conditions right along with them. I know I did running convoys, and the JSOC boys are well respected. Most of the ground punders in USAF have to train for USAF and sister service training and validation. At first we got no respect but, after the first time the ish hit the fan, we became the requested. All said I get your point, USAF lets fly these boys(our job) or let them do it themselves! This plane is useful and not matter where it was built. I do wish MADE IN THE USA actually had some value, but money has spurred traitors and backstabbing so bad we can barely function. GOD HELP USA!!

Yo smoking crack. No Js in da bone yard yet. I sho nuf should know cause I am de man. Get back on da bus and put the pipe down.

The simple fact is this aircraft is a worthy contender in the niche it performs in. The J is much better that the A. It has application. Sadly, the timing has proven to be disastrous to the ANG and the manufacturer Alenia. The AF leadership is retarded to let this slip from their fingers. But I have come to expect retarded decisions from the USAF. Yes, there I said it. Retired USAF officers employed by defense contractors filling their pockets with more spoils of war. GW Bush really screwed us by letting these retired officers cash in on their influence so soon after retirement. Now for the kicker. I predict the DoD Will purchase more Js before then end on the calendar year. There has been a great deal of interest from other agencies and 21 is just not enough to fill this need. You heard it here first.

So then the question seems to be. Who is the stupidest , most inept and corrupt wasters of US tax money , Congress , the Air Force , or all of the above ?

The Army Guard was originally programmed to purchase the C-27J to replace the aging and under powered C-23 Sherpa. Although the Air Force never wanted the C-27J they sure as hell didn’t want the Army to have them. So the Air Force maneuvered to get the C-27J. Once they got them, they half heartedly placed them into the Air Guard and now with the “excuse” of budget cuts they are placing brand new off the factory floor C-27Js into semi flyable storage.….really??? Although the Air Force said they will provide aerial sustainment support to the Army, if you look around Afghanistan to see who is really doing that mission, you’ll see a lot of contracted aviation flying those mission, not the Air Force.

I personally would have loved to see an Air Force Captain digging a hole in the rocky soil of Iraq next to me during the first Gulf War. But they were in Saudi living in air conditioned trailers eating three hot meals a day. I ate MREs for three months straight.

Aaaaahhh, C? All of the Above?

The Coast Guard is getting 14 C-27’s!


Because Italy buys a ton of US aircraft

Only US aircraft left C-130 and some KC-767…probably Preds and Reapers too.

The Coast Guard is actually hoping to get them. Commandant has a great interest in aquiring them. The 144 isn’t the platform they hoped it would be.

I have read some dumb stuff here. This plane was wanted in Afghanistan. I used to follow this story when I was deployed. It would have replaced the Sherpa which the Army already flies or had flown in the past. Fixed wing aircraft are part of the Army’s inventory. It is high time that the Army Air Corps is allowed to fly a decent plane, and be closer to the Soldiers. The Air Force puts us through hell for a flight. Let the Army fly the plane that it asked for and spare us the problem of the Air Force putting the C27 to bed again! Let the Army fly its plane! So, a warrant officer flies the plane as opposed to an overpaid Lt Col ?

Thank God for Sequestration!

The OBVIOUS answer is to use them for the U.S. Forestry Service in fighting wildfires.

The current fleet used by the USFS is antiquated and worn out.

Only.… this time, make sure that they can’t be transferred out of the USFS as happened with some of the previous aircraft in the USFS Aircraft Scandal of the past!

Lets sell them for these museum pieces…luuul. :|

why the hell are buying any equipment of any sort from Europe, especially Italy, who has proven time again they hate America? Of course the government doesn’t want to buy more C-130’s, it’s only arguably the best utility aircraft in history, it’s flaw being built in the Red state of GA…Gotta make the cuts hurt.
Oh thats right buying from Europe increases our trade deficit, helping in the ultimate goal of collapsing the dollar.
Good job on the Russian Helicopter buy for Afghanistan by the way; Putin laughed all the way to the bank.
Nothing like a little fifth collum daily attack.

This is just another stupid aircraft we don’t need when we already have a well established aircraft with far greater capabilities the C-130. I can’t imagine that the C-27 can do anything that the the C-130 can’t do much, much better. They mention the lower hourly costs of the C-27. But you have to add the total costs of the C-27 to the total costs of the C-130. If you’re only operating the one aircraft, the C-130, then you’re likely saving millions of dollars at no loss in mission capabilities. It’s really a no brainer-kill the C-27. If you want to know why it’s still around at all, follow the money trail-see what congressman or congressman’s district profits by keeping it alive.

You are so right. F35 is another stupidly expensive aircraft that’s not needed. Can you imagine using such an expensive aircraft in the ground support role that the A-10 does now? I say kill the F-35, build a few more F-22s, which are better and, probably by now, cheaper, and build some new A-10’s with maybe some upgraded engines and avionics. If it so obviously works, why look to replace it?

The C-130H’s cost less, because they’re already paid for! And they’re damn fine aircraft.

I too, flew C-123-K in vietnam , Out of Phan Rang with the 310th ACS. As fine a bush plane that was ever delivered. I view the C-27 as the logical successor to the 123. Those turbo’s must be a joy. It would seem that it would be the perfect aircraft for Special Ops, But alas, there are none at Hurlbert

No way you could EVER land a C-27 on a carrier and get it back off again without a crane.

On the other hand modified they’d be great as a lightweight gunship. If the entire fleet was thus converted it’d add significantly to our gunship fleet, and without impacting our cargo ability.

“Remember those laser equipped 747’s with the ability to shoot down missles? Here as well.”

I’d like to requisition 4 of the death stars. Send me the paperwork. I have a field to put them on (it’s Naval Reserve, but they won’t mind) and can find people who will fly them. About the ONLY way to maintain much of the Air Force is to transfer them to civil air militias such as the Confederate Air Force and have THEM maintain and operate them up until they’re needed …

I can’t believe they sidelined those particular aircraft. I was almost sure the first North Korean ICBM test was destroyed in boost phase by one of those. Further I don’t think anyone has thought of how useful they’d be destroying intercontinental bombers from long range, to say nothing of what they’d do to the hardware around the castle of a surface warship, or what would happen to an aircraft carrier with armed planes on its deck …

See the Mohawk Technologies/ATK OV-1 Mohawk with AH-64 Long Bow weapons system. ATK has been buying up every Mohawk airframe it can find, Davis Monthan AFB, California Dept of Forestry and the front of VFW halls across the nation. The Philippines is looking at purchasing 12 this year.

What’s wrong with the RED state of Ga?

It might be simply time to do away with the separate services. Each has their own forte’(and yeah I’m ex Army,avionics mech), which meant I had to work on aircraft AND spend time in tents and foxholes. Each service has a very proud and strong history, but if we’re honest, the infighting makes us weaker and less responsive.…it is simply the most profound gov’t weakness.

Example: if the various agencies(FBI, CIA, NSA, etc etc) had spent more time working together and sharing information with each other, maybe 911 would not have happened. More gets lost in turf wars(and yeah, thats politics and human nature) than is really worth it.

C-27 cannot be altered to land on carriers without spending more on completly rebuilding the a/c than it would cost to simply buy a different a/c that is designed for that type of duty. i agree with the concept that we should be buying a/c that are built in the USA only. that is a lot of b/s buying a/c or anything else for our military that is made outside of the USA. especially guns, ships, ammo, missile/ac components, vehicles, or any thing else that we would need in time of conflict that we could not get from within. just look at iran with all the f-4’s and no parts.

Face it USAF COS does not want anything that isn’t one new & shiny and has way to many engines. I think the AF has started a fight they can’t win. Guys if you don’t want to die on this hill don’t attack and make them shoot you. Gentleman this looks like a fight you can’t win, lick your wounds and give the guard the planes and shut up. If you don’t Congress will take your toys away and fire your backside. Choose your battles better next time.
If you study the big companies like UPS & FEDEX use smaller A/C to feed into hubs and then they use their big boys to do the heavy lifting. The C-27 ‘s are a good in their job and C-130J & C-17 in theirs. Flying a C-17 with one pallet 1100 miles does not make sense unless you use the least expensive per mile a/c.. I’m sure if you think about it long enough you’ll understand.…

Scrap them.….we need to make these things in america. If we cant then we deserve to fall. Burns my butt that we have our weapons systems built overseas…even by an ally. WRONG

Scrap them OK and Italy MUST scrap your fucking unready, underperforming, unaffordable F-35 with basically no significant Italian content (4%?)while there is 70% content on C-27J.
Blame Yourself if you’ll be alone in next war! I really hope not all Americans are like you.

I mean 70% US content in C-27J

Well if they plan on sending them to the boneyard why don’t they send them to the forestry service to be fitted for putting out fires from the air. Their fleet is falling apart and it being a cargo plane could easily be adapted to be a fighting fire retardant tanker I would think! Please do not waste the tax payers money by letting these set in a boneyard to rust and corrode away. Let them help the tax payers and the country fight forest fires.

At some point community firefighting will become unessential to what is necessary and proper to operating a police state.

Why doesn’t the government give the air planes free to states that are having so many wild fires like
California, Colorado, and Minnesota. In Minnesota’s case they could be parked at the
Duluth airport until needed. These Large wide bodied cargo plans could be fitted to carry
water and or fire retardant in a moments notice. This would make more sense than sending
them to a Bone yard .

Why not loan these aircraft to appropriate civilian authorities for use fighting wildfires after their having been
modified to disperse fire retardants and water?

The C130J can’t do the same mission of the JCA. No even close. The Army asked for this aircraft and the Army has the need. The JCA was to play an important role for the Army. To supply the troop on the front lines. The JCA did that and did it well. This is a mistake to put this aircraft in the bone yard. They did the same with the C27A years ago. This is not the first go around. Ask the Army they wanted it and need it. If the C130 could do the mission it would be doing it. The C130 is not a STOL aircraft.


Who on earth in selling the C27J? check the prime before you think all the money is going to italy>

I am currently flying an Army C-12 in Kuwait with over 10,000 hours on the plane, but they have spent upwards of a million dollars in updating the cockpit. The entire Army fleet is over flown and does not meet the mission needs. It is a 12,500 lb plane that the Army flys at 14,000 lbs… It is the U.S. tax payer who has invested in our program and the military show improve its allocation process.

Somebody is a bonehead.

The Afghans bought them but could’t figure out where to put in the gas, or that it didn’t use gas. The Forest Service was offered 14, but can’t afford them. The Coast Guard would be a good fit, but money is always a problem with that service. The C-130 is a better trash hauler, but they’re getting the J’s now, which are far better than the Spartan. .Boeing is closing down the C-17 production line after producing about 223 or so and there will be no more. What the AF really needs is a C-5 replacement — the “M” version has proven to be really nice, but stupendously expensive to modify. A new replacement really isn’t in the cards, meaning hauling around Abrams is a bit of a problem. Perhaps we should stop making war and build schools — that’s what the youth of Pakistan, Afghanistan and every other ‘stan want.

Lockheed teamed with Alenia to modify the Italian plane, using the engines and props from the C-130, along with the glass cockpit. It’s a decent aircraft and is needed, but the Air Force knows or believes that sequestration is not a passing fad, thus it is focusing on projects it most needs, which are the F-35, upgrading the B-52, its fighter radars and weapons, space capability, and missiles and missile defense. Look forward, forget Afghanistan, think China, and that’s where the Air Force is looking.

Unfortunately, our political process has become corrupt, and is now broken. That corruption of money has flooded into every facet of decision making, the average wealth of congress is $990,000 and a mere 40 TP’ers control the budget, which they are gutting by every means possible. Sequestration was just the beginning of that war. Just the beginning.

I believe that the cost/hour for that helo is far higher than the Spartan and far, far higher than stated here. One of the problems is that they are old and maintenance has risen through the roof, bringing down availability.

Defense News, 3-19-2012:

“The Air Force argues the quad-engine C-130 can carry more troops and supplies longer distances than the smaller, twin-engine C-27J. The fiscal 2013 budget request, if enacted, would terminate the program. The service is still deciding what to do with its existing C-27s, which could be maintained, transferred to another service or sold to a foreign country.

The Air Force claim is not only counter to Lohrer’s briefing, but also to an analysis by the Pentagon’s Cost Analysis and Program Evaluation (CAPE) group, which shows that over 30 years it would cost the Air Force $270 million to fly one C-27J at 400 hours per year using a reserve component crew. This is compared to $163 million for the C-130H, using the same parameters.”

You need to forget Afghanistan — that war is over for us, although of course Congress will insist that we need multiple military bases there, adding to the 1170 we’ve currently got, despite the protests of our military.

Same engines, same props, same glass cockpit. 24 paratroopers v. 64 for the C-130J which is faster, and has better range. We are getting OUT of Afghanistan, and it might just be that the Air Force is aware of that fact.

THINK about those numbers. How does flying a two engine plane cost more than a four engine plane? If you don’t know why, you should be asking…

Afghanistan is over but here will be another one and with it will be a need for intratheatre lift.

Of course the C27J isn’t as efficient at doing the C130’s job. It wasn’t meant to. It was meant to move lighter loads less distance. The Air Force’s justification was like comparing how long it would take to transport a tractor trailers load from point A to B. Of course the Tractor trailer will be more efficient. Problem is that’s not what pick ups do. When it comes to moving a small load that pick up is going to shine.

This is why the Air Force doesn’t get it. Either they don’t want to understand tactical resupply or want to make the Army bend to their efficiency model the hell with the troops on the ground that need a half a C130 load’s worth of engines, parts or other gear for the ongoing battle.

The Air Force was extremely duplicitous in this deal. They back roomed congress to take this airplane from the Army. The service has become 100% political, because they are destined to be rolled back to the Army if they weren’t.

The Air Force is rotten to the core. It starts at the Academy where the leadership went insane decades ago, and spreads throughout the service at all levels. The Generals are too numerous for the mission and incompetent. They can’t even be trusted any longer to do the missions they are assigned. Look at the recent gaffs with our Nuclear Weapon Security and readiness. Can they even get a launch off in time? They have disgraced themselves in the battle field. Any service that helps it’s members get combat ribbons by flying into a war zone for 30 days should be ashamed.

Here is the Fix. It will save billions of dollars and result in a better force.

1. Throw out the 1951 Key West Accords which created the separation of the Army Air Corps from the US Army.
2. Go back to the the US Army Air Forces moniker (Air Force)
3. RIFF every Air Force Officer above the rank of LT, and replace them with Warrant Officers in the cockpits, and put qualified Army officers from the Battle hardened Aviation Branch in Command of the units.
4. Start training Army Air Force personnel to be soldiers first. (This is a trigger, this is tent, etc)
5. Put well trained enlisted controllers in the chairs of the UAV RPV fleets

There is no way a C-27J costs $9000 per flight hour. That’s was just some number the Air Force pulled out of their ass to justify the cancelation. The National Guard claims they only cost $2000 an hour to operate which based of fuel burn rate and mission capable rate seems more on target…so yes, they are cheaper to operate than ch-47 and so much faster

They are fully outfitted with an avionics package that is exactly the same as the c-130J made and installed in America at the L-3 Comm plant in Waco texas

army already does close air support better than the airforce, and the army does not confuse real Nukes with dummy nukes and fly them from North dakota to Louisiania!

when was the last day america lost “air speriority” 9/11/20001 dont count

Probably a couple of days in Korea or WW2. Most infamously would be December 7, 1941, but we lost air superiority over the Philippines, Wake Island, Guam, etc afterwards.

This is criminal!! We here at AFRICOM are in urgent need of inter-theater lift on the African continent. I cannot believe that brand new C-27J aircraft, that have all the capabilities we need, are being sent to the “bone-yard” in Tucson!! Unbelievable!!

Sorry to hear it. Is the AF not sending C-130’s?

I’m sure your cries will be translated into “we need more C-17’s, reopen production at Long Beach!”

Air Force leadership, has unfortunately shown themselves so far out of touch with the actual needs of troops on the ground it is not even funny. They are more interested in making a name for themselves or setting up their next career move than doing what is right for the people who actually need the support.

I Believe congress would like the CH-47, C130, and several other aircraft to go the way of the doo doo bird. If congress is pushing to get more of these aircraft, some congressional district is to gain from this. I live here in Arizona, not far from AMART, and the desert is full of aircraft, but I guess we always have more desert.

And we wonder why DOD has a problem justifying why we need monies for pay and equipment. This is a typical example of arrogance with the dollar and self entitlement. This coupled with Navy contract fraud one can easily see that fraud, waste, and abuse is a real concern.

If the AF does not want these planes the states of California, Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico and Texas should take them over and let the respective Fires Department in these states to use them as wild fire fighting assets.

We REALLY have tio stop doing business this way! It’s just stupid, insane, and wasteful of precious funds.

Great airplane, would work great for the COAST GUARD! Also, Air Guard units could operate them much cheaper than the C-130. What a shame!

What do you replace a C-130 with? Another C-130!
One of the first lessons learned in 1982 .….

That’s my 24 years and 6 different models of Herc speaking with over 10K flying hours logged as a maintenance man…

give them to the Afghan Air Force instead of the C-130’s we promised them…we own these already and they can pure fleet on this airframe

Roger that, I drafted the first Army TOE/MTOE stuctures to suport the aircraft and they were just days away from being approved by HQDA. But the Air Force which was offerd the lead for the aircraft(and did not take it) backdoored the Army with Congress and convinced them that the Air Force could do a better job with the aircraft. The Army let it go with the promise from the Secretary of the Air Force and GEN Swartz that they would fully support the Army with the aircraft.….…… and now look at where that promise stands.

The C27 is a great aircraft but the one the USCG will receive are in transport configuration and therefore will need and extensive invesment by adding equipment for MPA missions like the HC144 wich is already prepare for that mission.
However is a great news the USCG will receive C27 aircraft and for sure they will do a great job with them.
By the way: the ARMY should have fixed wing cargo airplanes like the C27 or the C295. Using CH47 is a wasted of money and resources in some mission fixed wings aircraft could easily do

Different fuselage .

C27 would be good for Army gunship

They could hold a chicken in their lap when travelling to developing countries, and present them as gifts. Maybe leave room for some goats as well.


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