Monday, November 4, 2013

The Sidewinder

This is something you don't want your opponent to have. And with the AIM-9X's very sophisticated all-aspect seeker head, the bad guy doesn't have to be at your six for this missile to be effective!

AIM-9 Missile Sending a QF-4 Drone to Valhalla
The Old NFO sent me a link to a very nice article on the AIM-9, here. You should check it out!

I didn't have the opportunity to "play" with these back in the day, as the Weapon Control System on the F-4 was primarily the radar and the gun sight system. Think radar guided AIM-7 Sparrows and dropping bombs. While it was called a gun sight the F-4C and F-4D model aircraft I worked had no internal gun. Just this wanking huge gun pod we could hang on the center-line station. (I'm sure Virgil and Juvat could explain the aerodynamic "qualities" of that pod.)

But I have seen 'Winders mounted on jets, both the blue and the war shot versions. So I can semi-reliably recognize them on 3 out of 4 attempts. (Heh.)

No, the AIM-9 series of missiles was pretty simple, point your jet at a heat source, get a tone, pull the trigger and move on to other targets. Fire and forget. This video will give you an idea of how capable the latest version is.

I'm glad the Old NFO gave me that article to share because I'm just not feeling the creative juices flowing today. I blame the switch over back to Standard Time. Yes, yes, I know we "gained" an hour on Sunday but the time change still messes with my equilibrium. Regardless of it's direction. It's not that I dislike change...

Well, actually it is because I dislike change.

I was going to say something about being a "codger". But while I like the "eccentric" part of the definition of that word, I'm not thrilled with that whole "usually elderly" bit. Because I'm not elderly. Though my progeny might say otherwise.

I much prefer the term "pain in the a$$". Most would heartily agree with that self-assessment!

At least I've got that going for me.


  1. Very cool.

    Now how to mount one to a Cessna 172...

    1. Just one?

      (Of course I'm thinking solely in terms of weight and balance...)

  2. Yeah, just one. Balance might be an issue so it'll have to be inboard much as possible, but two and two rails would definitely be a weight problem.

    1. Hadn't thought of that. Not much use if you can't get off the runway!

  3. I figured this was more up your alley than mine... :-) Glad I could fill a gap for ya!

  4. Yes, yes, I know we "gained" an hour on Sunday but the time change still messes with my equilibrium. Regardless of it's direction.

    Concur. It always has and always will. But the "Spring forward" bits are worse than the "Fall back" parts.

    Interesting video.

    1. Concur on the "spring ahead" versus the "fall back". The former is the most painful.

      I though the video was pretty cool. Didja see the bit where the 'Winder pulled a U-turn to go after the drone? Pretty cool stuff.

    2. I watched the vid two and a half times. It was that interesting.

    3. Yeah, I had to watch it more than once because I couldn't believe what I had just seen. Pretty amazing missile.


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