Fulcrum and Flanker

The MiG-29 and Su-27 form the basis for the latest generation Soviet…whoops sorrys *cough* Russian fighters.

When I was growing up the jets were always enigmas to me. Needless to say,  so much has changed since the end of the Cold War.

Any my first encounter with the Fulcrum was in Quincy, IL at the airport, Quincy Regional Airport (KUIN). The MiGs (among other types) are owned by a DOD contractor called Air-USA. I was attending college in Quincy at the time (GO HAWKS!)

First flight of the Fulcrum in Quincy is here:

I have not seen a Flanker first hand but one was delivered to Pride Aircraft at Rockford, IL (KRFD) a few years ago and sold to an unknown private civilian owner.

Here’s a Discovery Wings channel documentary on the development of the early versions Fulcrum and Flanker:

Nowadays I can swing a kitty cat and hit a Fulcrum. The used to be flown by the Luftwaffe,  and the Polish AF so  NATO fighter pilots have been pretty well exposed to the Fulcrum.

While even more common in export versions, the Flanker has a little less exposure to NATO fighter pilots and still remains somewhat of a mystery. Limited exposure has been granted to USAF pilots to the SU-30 variant from Indian Air Force participation in Red Flag and other exercises.

7 Comments

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7 responses to “Fulcrum and Flanker

  1. First time I saw a picture of a Flanker, flying alongside a P-3, I couldn’t help but notice the resemblance to an F-14 and F-15; quite a hybrid. I have a couple of videos of the first American owned Flankers, one showing engine run-ups and a second of the first flight.
    There will be more made available. I wish Lex would have been able to go to work for Tactical Air Defense Services at Reno-Stead, where he would have been flying a Flanker and other aircraft instead of a lawn dart Kfir.

  2. cg23sailor

    Don’t get too used to calling them Russian fighter’s. I suspect we will have to go back to calling them Soviet fighters soon enough. What with the way Vladimir Putin is running things.

  3. cg23sailor

    OH and I forgot to add. And if Barry gets reelected, and with is hot-mic comment to Medvedev, I suspect we are on our way to becoming the New Soviet’s New Cuba.

  4. Bill Brandt

    When the Wall first came down, I got the funniest feeling seeing a MiG 29 in Luftwaffe colors. I fear cg23sailor is right with Putin – who is of course an ex Communist and KGB Colonel. But the world is moving fast with communication – let’s hope this keeps them from starting another Cold War.

  5. Hogday

    I remember when the mysterious MIG 25 Foxbat suddenly arrived on a Japanese airbase. For all its top whack, wasn’t it much lower tech than the West suspected?

  6. Comjam

    MiG-29 Fun Fact: After it came out, we were told by the “experts” that we were all toast because they had helmet-mounted sights and off-bore heat-seeking missile capabilities, another obvious demonstration of Soviet design capabilities. In the mid-90’s I had the pleasure of speaking with a Lithuanian who had grown up under the Soviet boot and had gone into the Soviet Air Force and had actually become a squadron commander of a MiG-29 unit based in what was then the DDR. (His family and he took a little weekend vacation one summer and made it across into the FGR via then-Czechoslovakia)

    I asked him about the sight, and he laughed. “We never, ever got a chance to ever fly with them. They were so secret, we were told we’d be issued them if we went to war and the techno’s would tell us how to use them before we launched for real. We had no clue on how to fight the MiG using them.”

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