How to Merge (Basics)
It’s been a while since my last post. Enjoy
video removed due to language used in the backing soundtrack - please repost video without it
I decided to make this it’s own thread. Seeing as merging can be a complex subject, this thread is open for discussion on merge tactics/strategies and such… Please keep in mind this video only represents my own way of going about it.
Some notes on high speed bandits:
A high speed (600+) bandit is obviously relying on energy tactics, and will try to strangle you by exploiting the vertical. Hence, you must force them into a horizontal fight. Here are some options:
(This tactic is best reserved for when you are around angels 20 to begin with.) Blow through the merge at full AB, get some speed and zoom climb up to Angels 25+ before reengaging. This will “cut the vertical” turning room and the bandit will be forced fight in the horizontal. Warning, be gentle on the stick up there.
Merge as normal. The second you see the bandit go vertical (even obliquely) use this time to turn away and gain some horizontal turning room. This will allow you to build up some speed and the subsequent merge should be at relatively equal energy states.
Give the bandit some “slight” turning room and see if they bite high E. As the bandit is passing you begin a 1-circle lead turn. With some subsequent rolling reversals the bandit should pop out right in your guns. Timing is essential for this.
Of course, one option is to match the bandit speed before merging. This is what most people would do. However, you will not be in the jet’s maximum turn performance range, and you are now in the energy game. Largely a psychological battle, whoever makes the first mistake loses.
Nice music thanks for fixing……
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“I can be sensitive” :mrgreen:
Thankfully I’d put my coffee down before I read that
Nice video. The music though…:-)
Do you think that merge still plays a role in the era of AESA radars, Helmet Targeting Systems and AIM-9X, Python 5 and IRIS-T? I could imagine that a VLO acft merging against another one may need to merge without able to shot a missile before , but any other 3rd/4th generation has a very small chance against such a technology nowadays. The advance in the lethality of WVR missiles and the capability of off-boresight targeting are such that if you take very old platforms like an F-5E or a MIG-21 and put a AIM-9X+HMCS on it, it will be able o kill without any problem any 4th generation platform before any merge is possible.
In short I agree with you, with some caveats. While I agree the AIM9X is a serious threat, there are ways to beat it. It comes down to missle PK…
What we know about missiles is that their motors a have a finite burn time, usually a few seconds. With proper merge tactics you could defeat these missiles kinetically. Furthermore, shooting a missile very high off boresight depletes the missile’s energy quickly.
More details in this post.
That’s highly theoretical though, and the 9X has yet to be proven in combat. That said, I have doubts a modern fighter pilot would let it go that far. More likely, they would just exit the combat arena before engaging WVR. There are simply so many long range tools to leverage that risking the jet and their lives becomes trivial.