Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) News and Discussions

HeimDefan

New Member
Points 1 and 2 are diametrically opposed to each other. Based off the costs for domestic production of the Gripen in Brazil, which is ~USD$120 mil. per aircraft, as I had already mentioned previously in this thread, the costs for a domestic Canadian-built Gripen would be as high or higher. The only way that Gripen would be the "low cost" option is if Canada were to purchase them from a line that is already actively producing the aircraft efficiently. This essentially means importing them from Sweden, where the per aircraft flyaway costs might get down to ~USD$69 mil though I have seen some sources which say Gripen's flyaway cost is USD$85 mil.

For a point of comparison, the F-35A cost from LRIP Lot 14 was USD$77.9 mil. data for this can be found here.

The basic gist of that is the assertions that importing the Gripen is the 'low cost' option to acquire new fighters may no longer be accurate, and even if is still true, the cost difference is perhaps 10% less, while the F-35 is at the end of the low rate initial production cycles. While I expect the operating costs for Gripen to continue to be lower, the range of capabilities that a Gripen can offer both now and into the future will also be less. Especially if a conflict were to break out between a peer or near-peer competitor. The other thing to consider is not just the costs to acquire and operate a fighter, but also it's service life. In this regard, the F-35 is likely to have a longer service life while remaining an effective and relevant asset than if any new 4th or 4.5 gen fighters were to be purchased by the RCAF. Where things could really start to fall down is the future options and costs to fit newly developed kit to 4th and 4.5 gen fighters. The fewer user-nations for a fighter, the less urgency there would be to develop and integrate new weapon capabilities on the part of manufacturers, as it would be dependent on what the user-nations wanted and were willing to pay for. Being part of a wide user base however is likely to increase what gets developed and integrated, as well as reducing the costs different users pay because it can be spread around more.

With all the above in mind, there are a number of options available to the RCAF. I know what I prefer as well as why I prefer it, but absent further information or guidance from the CANGov, we cannot state with anything like certainty what will end up being selected, or why.
F-35 costs less per unit to buy but it is much more costly than Gripen to fly and service. It uses a single large engine instead of a single small engine, not to mention the RAM paint which is very expensive and need to be repainted often.
 

Todjaeger

Potstirrer
F-35 costs less per unit to buy but it is much more costly than Gripen to fly and service. It uses a single large engine instead of a single small engine, not to mention the RAM paint which is very expensive and need to be repainted often.
I am aware of the differences in acquisition vs. operating or sustainment costs.

There is also a likely difference in projected survivability rates, especially vs. peer and near-peer countries with the margin growing greater the further time marches on. In that regard, a "lower costing" platform to operate can quickly become non-viable despite a low operating cost, because it cannot plug into the rest of the warfighting systems being used, and/or the platform becomes too vulnerable to hostile air effects (GBAD systems, EW, fighter/interceptors, etc.) and either cannot be risked or is risked and damaged/destroyed. One really needs to remember that whatever fighter design gets selected to replace the F/A-18's currently in service needs to be looked at for how it will serve not get at the start of it's service career in the mid to late 2020's, but also how it will be serving in the late 2040's and quite possibly later.

As for any Gripen order being built domestically to restart a Canadian domestic aerospace industry... Not really. Even if major aircraft components were also being built (as opposed to just assembly of components from knock down kits) the production run in Canada would be very unlikely to last a decade, unless Canada were to significantly expand the quantity ordered beyond 88. I would guestimate that from start to finish, component and aircraft production in Canada for a Gripen order would only last seven or eight years. After that, there would be no follow-on orders and the Gripen production site would idle and the workforce disperse.
 

HeimDefan

New Member
I am aware of the differences in acquisition vs. operating or sustainment costs.

There is also a likely difference in projected survivability rates, especially vs. peer and near-peer countries with the margin growing greater the further time marches on. In that regard, a "lower costing" platform to operate can quickly become non-viable despite a low operating cost, because it cannot plug into the rest of the warfighting systems being used, and/or the platform becomes too vulnerable to hostile air effects (GBAD systems, EW, fighter/interceptors, etc.) and either cannot be risked or is risked and damaged/destroyed. One really needs to remember that whatever fighter design gets selected to replace the F/A-18's currently in service needs to be looked at for how it will serve not get at the start of it's service career in the mid to late 2020's, but also how it will be serving in the late 2040's and quite possibly later.

As for any Gripen order being built domestically to restart a Canadian domestic aerospace industry... Not really. Even if major aircraft components were also being built (as opposed to just assembly of components from knock down kits) the production run in Canada would be very unlikely to last a decade, unless Canada were to significantly expand the quantity ordered beyond 88. I would guestimate that from start to finish, component and aircraft production in Canada for a Gripen order would only last seven or eight years. After that, there would be no follow-on orders and the Gripen production site would idle and the workforce disperse.
Liberal government cut funding and forbid Canadian air force from participating in foreign wars. CF-18 is sufficient for Canada's needs. The only need for newly built fighter jets is because F-18 production line ceased and there is nowhere to get new frames. Gripen is sufficient for Canada's needs. Gripen line can be built in Canada to manufacture the frames for decades into the future. It's not like, you know, Canada will fight China and Russia or anything. Like I said, Canadian government forbid Canadian air force from participating in foreign wars. There is no need for Super Hornet much less F-35.
 

John Fedup

The Bunker Group
Absolutely agree, 88 jets assembled in Canada, even with some component manufacturing, is not going to restart military aviation here. Future military jet programs will be multi-national and frankly, given Canada’s military procurement record of late, few nations would want the risks of major Canadian partnership.
 

John Fedup

The Bunker Group
Liberal government cut funding and forbid Canadian air force from participating in foreign wars. CF-18 is sufficient for Canada's needs if not F-18 production line ceased and there is nowhere to get new frames. Gripen is sufficient for Canada's needs. Gripen line can be built in Canada to manufacture the frames for decades into the future. It's not like, you know, Canada will fight China and Russia or anything. Like I said, Canadian government forbid Canadian air force from participating in foreign wars. There is no need for Super Hornet much less F-35.
Canada is still a NATO member and thus is required to support any member that is attacked.
 

HeimDefan

New Member
Canada is still a NATO member and thus is required to support any member that is attacked.
Not required. Nowhere in the NATO treaty does it say Canada must take military action if the US is attacked again. Indeed, after Trudeau was elected, Canada withdrew from Iraq and Afghanistan even though US wanted Canada to continue fighting the terrorists.
 

John Fedup

The Bunker Group
Not required. Nowhere in the NATO treaty does it say Canada must take military action if the US is attacked again. Indeed, after Trudeau was elected, Canada withdrew from Iraq and Afghanistan even though US wanted Canada to continue fighting the terrorists.
Suggest you check article 5 of the NATO treaty which was invoked after 9/11. Canada went to Afghanistan then but not Iraq a year later because Iraq had not actually attacked a NATO member. Iraq was a UN action over WMD albeit a false reason. The later Iraq mission against ISIS, Canada sent CF-18s, a tanker, and for awhile also an Aurora.
 

Todjaeger

Potstirrer
Not required. Nowhere in the NATO treaty does it say Canada must take military action if the US is attacked again. Indeed, after Trudeau was elected, Canada withdrew from Iraq and Afghanistan even though US wanted Canada to continue fighting the terrorists.
As mentioned, re-read the treaty paying particular attention to Article 5. Also one should remember that Canada is a partner in the joint US-Canadian military command known as NORAD.

Further, look at the situation you are presenting as being factual from a position of logic. A mutual defence treaty, which members can opt to not respond when requested, is not really a mutual defence pact as there would be no guarantee that if Nation A was attacked, that Nation B or any other pact participants would respond.

Liberal government cut funding and forbid Canadian air force from participating in foreign wars. CF-18 is sufficient for Canada's needs. The only need for newly built fighter jets is because F-18 production line ceased and there is nowhere to get new frames. Gripen is sufficient for Canada's needs. Gripen line can be built in Canada to manufacture the frames for decades into the future. It's not like, you know, Canada will fight China and Russia or anything. Like I said, Canadian government forbid Canadian air force from participating in foreign wars. There is no need for Super Hornet much less F-35.
Umm... No. The statements above are really rather inaccurate in quite a few areas. Canada cannot sustain a Gripen production line for decades, that is patently false. In order to sustain a production line, not just the physical production line infrastructure is required. In addition, a pool of workers for the line are needed with the appropriate skills and experience. Unless a Canadian Gripen plant were to continue to receive orders, once the build order for the 88 fighters the RCAF require is completed the line will idle and either the workers will be made redundant and seek alternate employment, or if the workers are held over their skills will atrophy from lack of use.

The suggestion that new production Gripens will even be viable front line combat aircraft for modern air forces decades from now is a whole different assertion. One that I think most serious observers of defence matters would not take seriously. The Gripen E/F, being of the same aircraft generation as the Typhoon an SHornet, can meet the likely requirements now and perhaps for the next decade of service. Two decades of service could be pushing it, while 3+ decades are not something for serious consideration.

Despite what has been asserted above about the likelihood of a clash involving Canada and either China or Russia, a number of people are of a decidedly different opinion. Now the following is my opinion, I do feel there is a real potential for Canada to be involved in a clash with Russia and/or China (PRC), for one or more potential reasons. Both Russia and the PRC seem intent on expanding their respective national influences and reach and this in turn leads to the potential for either/both nations to initiate conflict with nations they feel are "in their way". This could lead to Canada being drawn in either due to treaty obligations, tradition, or national self-interest. There is also the potential for either/both countries to have a direct conflict with Canada as a result of the Northwest Passage opening up, particularly since it seems likely that Canada would consider that passage to be largely or wholly within Canada's home or territorial waters, yet other nations might consider it an international seaway. Given that Russia and the PRC have had expeditions to the Arctic in recent years I can see cases for either to clash with Canada, particularly if Russia/PRC design to establish a facility on one (or more) of the remote islands.
 
Last edited:

HeimDefan

New Member
Suggest you check article 5 of the NATO treaty which was invoked after 9/11. Canada went to Afghanistan then but not Iraq a year later because Iraq had not actually attacked a NATO member. Iraq was a UN action over WMD albeit a false reason. The later Iraq mission against ISIS, Canada sent CF-18s, a tanker, and for awhile also an Aurora.
The NATO treaty says an attack on the US = an attack on Canada. Nowhere does it say Canada must deploy military action against the aggressor. This is the loophole in the treaty. All treaties have loopholes. Japan uses the loophole in the San Francisco treaty to lay claim to southern Kuril islands.
 

HeimDefan

New Member
As mentioned, re-read the treaty paying particular attention to Article 5. Also one should remember that Canada is a partner in the joint US-Canadian military command known as NORAD.

Further, look at the situation you are presenting as being factual from a position of logic. A mutual defence treaty, which members can opt to not respond when requested, is not really a mutual defence pact as there would be no guarantee that if Nation A was attacked, that Nation B or any other pact participants would respond.



Umm... No. The statements above are really rather inaccurate in quite a few areas. Canada cannot sustain a Gripen production line for decades, that is patently false. In order to sustain a production line, not just the physical production line infrastructure is required. In addition, a pool of workers for the line are needed with the appropriate skills and experience. Unless a Canadian Gripen plant were to continue to receive orders, once the build order for the 88 fighters the RCAF require is completed the line will idle and either the workers will be made redundant and seek alternate employment, or if the workers are held over their skills will atrophy from lack of use.

The suggestion that new production Gripens will even be viable front line combat aircraft for modern air forces decades from now is a whole different assertion. One that I think most serious observers of defence matters would not take seriously. The Gripen E/F, being of the same aircraft generation as the Typhoon an SHornet, can meet the likely requirements now and perhaps for the next decade of service. Two decades of service could be pushing it, while 3+ decades are not something for serious consideration.

Despite what has been asserted above about the likelihood of a clash involving Canada and either China or Russia, a number of people are of a decidedly different opinion. Now the following is my opinion, I do feel there is a real potential for Canada to be involved in a clash with Russia and/or China (PRC), for one or more potential reasons. Both Russia and the PRC seem intent on expanding their respective national influences and reach and this in turn leads to the potential for either/both nations to initiate conflict with nations they feel are "in their way". This could lead to Canada being drawn in either due to treaty obligations, tradition, or national self-interest. There is also the potential for either/both countries to have a direct conflict with Canada as a result of the Northwest Passage opening up, particularly since it seems likely that Canada would consider that passage to be largely or wholly within Canada's home or territorial waters, yet other nations might consider it an international seaway. Given that Russia and the PRC have had expeditions to the Arctic in recent years I can see cases for either to clash with Canada, particularly if Russia/PRC design to establish a facility on one (or more) of the remote islands.
Canada will not fight China and Russia even if they attack the US. Canada is not a nuclear power. Canada is a peaceful country. Canada does not fight other people's wars. After Trudeau was elected Canada withdrew from Iraq and Afghanistan.
 

oldsig127

The Bunker Group
Verified Defense Pro
Canada will not fight China and Russia even if they attack the US. Canada is not a nuclear power. Canada is a peaceful country. Canada does not fight other people's wars. After Trudeau was elected Canada withdrew from Iraq and Afghanistan.
I take it that future elections can be discounted, and that Trudeau will reign forever? That no circumstance would ever bring Canada's people to resist force, whoever is in power?

oldsig
 

Preceptor

Super Moderator
Staff member
Canada will not fight China and Russia even if they attack the US. Canada is not a nuclear power. Canada is a peaceful country. Canada does not fight other people's wars. After Trudeau was elected Canada withdrew from Iraq and Afghanistan.

At this point you seem to be claiming that Canada is a neutral/non-aligned nation, despite various treaties Canada is signatory to. Proof to support such a claim is required, since others have already pointed out portions of the treaty which created NATO as well as Canadian involvement in NORAD, and Canada hasn't to date opted out of the associated treaties. Canada's status as a non-nuclear nation also isn't relevant, since only three of the 30 NATO member-states are nuclear powers, and all NATO members have agreed to collective defense. The withdrawal of Canadian forces following an election also isn't relevant, since that doesn't show how future Canadian governments would react to unknown incidents or security threats.
-Preceptor
 

HeimDefan

New Member
I take it that future elections can be discounted, and that Trudeau will reign forever? That no circumstance would ever bring Canada's people to resist force, whoever is in power?

oldsig
Canada is becoming more non white. Conservatives have no realistic chance of taking office again.
 

HeimDefan

New Member
At this point you seem to be claiming that Canada is a neutral/non-aligned nation, despite various treaties Canada is signatory to. Proof to support such a claim is required, since others have already pointed out portions of the treaty which created NATO as well as Canadian involvement in NORAD, and Canada hasn't to date opted out of the associated treaties. Canada's status as a non-nuclear nation also isn't relevant, since only three of the 30 NATO member-states are nuclear powers, and all NATO members have agreed to collective defense. The withdrawal of Canadian forces following an election also isn't relevant, since that doesn't show how future Canadian governments would react to unknown incidents or security threats.
-Preceptor
Just saying. Canada isn't going to fight China and Russia in the event of war between them and America beyond possibly lip service. Canadians are peaceful and not will engage in foreign wars. This is the reason Gripen is sufficient for Canadian air force and the most likely plane Canadian air force will buy to replace the aging CF-18 frames. As for counter terror operations in the future, even if Canada rejoins the war on terror even though such a chance is extremely small, armed drones are far more suited to that type of mission than manned combat jets. The sortie costs are far lower for armed drones than they are for manned combat jets. Case in point. Syria and Libya where armed drones, not manned combat jets, rule supreme.

This article explains my point very well.

 
Last edited:

Preceptor

Super Moderator
Staff member
Just saying. Canada isn't going to fight China and Russia in the event of war between them and America beyond possibly lip service. Canadians are peaceful and not will engage in foreign wars. This is the reason Gripen is sufficient for Canadian air force and the most likely plane Canadian air force will buy to replace the aging CF-18 frames. As for counter terror operations in the future, even if Canada rejoins the war on terror even though such a chance is extremely small, armed drones are far more suited to that type of mission than manned combat jets. The sortie costs are far lower for armed drones than they are for manned combat jets. Case in point. Syria and Libya where armed drones, not manned combat jets, rule supreme.

This article explains my point very well.

Linking to a factually inaccurate opinion piece does not constitute proof. You are hereby banned.
-Preceptor
 

Redlands18

Well-Known Member
Just saying. Canada isn't going to fight China and Russia in the event of war between them and America beyond possibly lip service. Canadians are peaceful and not will engage in foreign wars. This is the reason Gripen is sufficient for Canadian air force and the most likely plane Canadian air force will buy to replace the aging CF-18 frames. As for counter terror operations in the future, even if Canada rejoins the war on terror even though such a chance is extremely small, armed drones are far more suited to that type of mission than manned combat jets. The sortie costs are far lower for armed drones than they are for manned combat jets. Case in point. Syria and Libya where armed drones, not manned combat jets, rule supreme.

This article explains my point very well.

And the US had no intention of fighting Germany on 6 Dec 1941 either, they were far more isolationist then Canada is today and even after Pearl Harbour they didn’t declare war on Germany until Germany declared war on the US first on the 10th. 4 days is all it took to go from isolationist to all out Warfare in 2 theatres.
 

OPSSG

Super Moderator
Staff member
General guidance to all and directed to no one specifically.

The Moderators have to strike a balance between catering to egotistical members (who refuse to read sources provided) and keeping experienced members, providing guidance to others, happy. Your ethnicity or nationality is much less relevant to the knowledge you can share to enrich the content of any thread. No thread should be a ghetto of the ill informed by virtue of nationality, ethnicity or prior service background.

In view of the increased frequency of thread vandalism by certain egotistical members, our tolerance mode may soon be set to “off”, by default soon. To that end, let us clarify 4 points:

1. Everyone is free to have express own opinion (even if it is mistaken).

Close combat is still most important. Super Hornet shot AMRAAM at 1970s Su-22 and missed.
This is incorrect. The Super Hornet in question fired an AIM9X, which was likely a dud. No report of flares/IRCM being deployed from those involved in the incident – that idea was dreamed up in the blogosphere by Kyle Mizokami. The subsequent AMRAAM actually hit its target and successfully brought it down.

Thanks for posting to correct the deliberate mis-information being generated by HeimDefanso’s post. The Ja'Din shootdown incident occurred when a US Navy F/A-18E, shot down a Syrian Air Force Su-22 Fitter with an AIM-120 AMRAAM missile after it reportedly attacked U.S. backed Syrian Democratic Forces positions. Here is a video that recreates the sequence of events on 18 June 2017.
2. If an opinion held by person XYZ is not based on fact (as shown by HeimDefan’s post) other members of DT are free to express their opinion that XYZ's opinion is based on a mistake of fact (as shown by Boagrius’ reply) or that XYZ opinion is worthless based on observed fact (as shown by the additional link and facts provided by me).

3. But XYZ is not allowed to continue presenting a mistaken opinion as fact, especially when it is proven as wrong — as the example above shows.

I was at a bookstore in Waterloo a couple of weeks ago and they suggest it is most likely Canada will go for Gripen.
4. Citing a bookstore or wiki, is not considered presenting a valid fact. While we are quite amused at the creative attempt (to pass of an invalid opinion as fact), we would like to clarify that DT members do not have to accept these citations as valid sources.
 
Last edited:

t68

Well-Known Member
The liberal government is keen on creating new manufacturing jobs in Canada. Especially now with COVID causing record high unemployment. To this end, Gripen is the best choice because it offers full assembly in Canada. Canada used to have world class aviation industry in the 1950s so it's not a difficult to rebuild Canada's aviation industry.

Sweden being a neutral country has the option to co develop engine with China and Russia. JF-17 Block 3 is powered by RD-93MA which is a further development of RD-33MK and it is a fantastic little engine. Gripen in the future if US threatens sanctions can be powered by new generation of Swedish engines.

I imagine that would quite quickly by offset by the loss of manufacturing F35 components in Canada
 

Terran

Active Member
This is personal opinion @John Fedup, but I doubt if Canada chose not to go for F35 they would loose participation. Canada and the US are attached at the Preverbal hip both geographically and industrially. Canada without an order has spent over 540 million dollars on F35 without buying any to this point with Lockheed Martin promising a return over the life Of the program in the Billions.


Turkey was of course forced out due to a number of issues that needless to say seem impossible to happen between the US and Canada.
As a matter of opinion I think F35 is the best bet, however I am not Canadian. Each of these Jets has great selling points for my neighbors to the North.
F35 gives state of the art in all aspects,
F/A18 Block 3 Rinos are durable no slouch machines. That bring multirole to new levels. It can even tanker siblings.
JAS 35 along with its great tech brings it’s unique ability to operate in the worst of cold weather from short strips.
 
Top