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Why didn't China buy the MiG-29?

This is a discussion on Why didn't China buy the MiG-29? within the Air Force forums, part of the China Defense & Military category; Yes...a fighter of short endurance, limited weapons capability, and of course many would argue PLAAF chose wisely to buy Su-27 ...

  1. #1
    chicket9 is offline New Member
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    Why didn't China buy the MiG-29?

    Yes...a fighter of short endurance, limited weapons capability, and of course many would argue PLAAF chose wisely to buy Su-27 and Su-30 instead of MiG-29...which I agree...but China did have the option and was it even offered the MiG-29?

    Back in the mid 1990s, I thought MiG-29 was considered by PLAAF to supplement or compete with Su-27 purchase.

    Of course now, there is no need to buy MiG-29, as J-10 is to be entering production soon, but wouldn't it have been a better idea to buy MiG-29s anyway?

    Here is a more economical fighter than the Su-27, yet it has been proven to be almost unbeatable in many dogfights, eg the Luftwaffe's MiG-29s have won many close-range combats with Western counterparts. It is obviously an impressive aircraft used by many air forces, and the latest variants could carry AShMs and PGMs.

    Thoughts people?

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    challenge is offline Banned Idiot
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    Re: Why didn't China buy the MiG-29?

    according to past issue of diic.com,Russia do offer aside from SU-27,MIG-31,and MIG-29,in the end PLAAF settle for SU-27 since the sukhoi has potential for growth.

  3. #3
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    Re: Why didn't China buy the MiG-29?

    Well almoust all military aviation references in the 90's said that China will buy MiG-29, but those days the knowlidge about chinese military matters where quite limited even among the experts...

    For me it's quite logical why they didn't select MiGs. J-10 was already in development and a fighter to fullfill similar role could have had serious blows to the indegenious fighters development and could have led eventually it's cancellation.

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    Re: Why didn't China buy the MiG-29?

    Quote Originally Posted by chicket9
    Yes...a fighter of short endurance, limited weapons capability, and of course many would argue PLAAF chose wisely to buy Su-27 and Su-30 instead of MiG-29...which I agree...but China did have the option and was it even offered the MiG-29?

    Back in the mid 1990s, I thought MiG-29 was considered by PLAAF to supplement or compete with Su-27 purchase.

    Of course now, there is no need to buy MiG-29, as J-10 is to be entering production soon, but wouldn't it have been a better idea to buy MiG-29s anyway?

    Here is a more economical fighter than the Su-27, yet it has been proven to be almost unbeatable in many dogfights, eg the Luftwaffe's MiG-29s have won many close-range combats with Western counterparts. It is obviously an impressive aircraft used by many air forces, and the latest variants could carry AShMs and PGMs.

    Thoughts people?
    after the gulf war, they realized that they needed a hi-lo combination like F-15/F-16. Plus, they thought su-27 was the better plane. So no matter how much cheaper Mig-29 was, pla was just going for the best plane available for them at that time.

    And of course, the J-10, actually Mig-29 could still be considered the hi in the hi-lo combination with J-10 (it is larger), but it would be more like med-med.

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    Re: Why didn't China buy the MiG-29?

    I remember reports from early 1990s about this subject… Russia offered MiG-29, MiG-31 and Su-27 to China…
    As for reason why China didn’t buy MiG-29 I agree whit Golly; J-10 was under development and military probably didn’t won’t to give government any reason to stop its development…
    On other hand you must remember that MiG-29 version offered to China had quite limited range and abilities and that was probably second reason why PLAAF chouse Su-27…
    "Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth. " Marcus Aurelius

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    adeptitus is offline Senior Member
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    Re: Why didn't China buy the MiG-29?

    One thing to keep in mind is that the purchase decision was made back in early 1990s, and not today. Back then the standard export model MiG-29A is vastly inferior in capability to what the MiG-29SMT & MiG-29OVT can offer today.

    If we imagine a fictional scenario today where the PLAAF is only equipped with J-7, J8, and they were to go shopping in Russia, I think they'd prolly purchase license-production for both MiG-29SMT and Su-30MKK, possibly even MiG-29OVT and Su-35.

    As for MiG-31, it's a good interceptor with superior radar and data-link capability to the Su-27. But I think the PLAAF saw the writing on the wall and predicted that the MiG-31 platform didn't have much of a future. We can see the success of Su-27 line export vs. the total lack of interest in MiG-31 sales today.
    Last edited by adeptitus; 08-25-2006 at 01:24 PM.

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    Re: Why didn't China buy the MiG-29?

    once i saw an article says like that : the PLA planned to buy some MIG29, but in the following Air Show preformenced by MIG29. one or two fighter crushed just before the PLAF's specialists, so they cancel the plan. and bought SU27 instead. is that true?

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    unknauthr is offline Member
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    China and Russia Came to Same Conclusion

    During the 1990s, both China and the Russian Federation appear to have come to the same conclusion. Given the limited defense resources available, and the vast expanses of border that both nations have to patrol, investing in additional short range fighters simply made no sense.

    The Russians have abandoned all new purchases of the MiG-29, in favor of the Su-27 / Su-30 family of aircraft. In their case, they completely abandoned the traditional high-low fighter mix of the Soviet era, because the couldn't afford both airplanes. All new MiG-29s have been export fighters, for over a decade.

    For China's part, the J-10 offered a "low" end to their fighter mix, with range that completely out-classed any version of the MiG-29. As for the FC-1 - let's just say if it hadn't been for Pakistan's interest, that airplane wouldn't be around today.

  9. #9
    tphuang's Avatar
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    Re: China and Russia Came to Same Conclusion

    Quote Originally Posted by unknauthr
    During the 1990s, both China and the Russian Federation appear to have come to the same conclusion. Given the limited defense resources available, and the vast expanses of border that both nations have to patrol, investing in additional short range fighters simply made no sense.

    The Russians have abandoned all new purchases of the MiG-29, in favor of the Su-27 / Su-30 family of aircraft. In their case, they completely abandoned the traditional high-low fighter mix of the Soviet era, because the couldn't afford both airplanes. All new MiG-29s have been export fighters, for over a decade.

    For China's part, the J-10 offered a "low" end to their fighter mix, with range that completely out-classed any version of the MiG-29. As for the FC-1 - let's just say if it hadn't been for Pakistan's interest, that airplane wouldn't be around today.
    Yeah, that's one of the main reasons that su-27 was chosen. As for Mig-29, I think its range has really improved in the recent versions.

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    F40Racer is offline New Member
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    Re: Why didn't China buy the MiG-29?

    I think the PLAAF needed something that could take on the F-15. From what I have heard, the MiG-29 is no match for the later versions of the F-15. The Su-27 is superior to the F-15 in several categories such as manuverability and range.

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    adeptitus is offline Senior Member
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    Re: Why didn't China buy the MiG-29?

    The original MiG-29A (9.12) had internal fuel capacity of 4,365 liters, plus centerline 1,500 liter droptank. The aircraft could carry 3,500 kg max in munitions.

    The later MiG-29M (9.15) had internal fuel capacity increaed to 5,125 liters for "normal" load, and 6,082 liters for max load. The plane could also carry the 1,500 liter center droptank + 2 x 1,150 liter underwing drop tanks. The MiG-29M could also carry 4,500 kg max in munitions.

    There are also many other improvements to the MiG-29M, which you could read here: http://www.sci.fi/~fta/MiG-29-2.htm

    These improvements made the MiG-29M more attractive, but, it wasn't avail until 1995.

    Here's an interesting read:
    http://www.acig.org/artman/publish/article_288.shtml

    First of all the original design for the Su-27 (built in 1978) was unsatisfactory so a redesign was required. This was the T-10S. The first production Su-27S were to be delivered in 1984, but due to many problems with the plane as a complete weapons system delivery was delayed until 1985. Even these first twenty planes were only delivered to a test squadron by the production plant. Many additional problems then plagued the test unit, the avionics proving to be a major source of trouble. During 1985 the deliveries continued, and by 1989 a few hundred Su-27s were is service. But the system was only accepted as fully combat capable in 1990, showing that even in the period between 1985 and 1990 huge problems with reliability and the avionics existed. By contrast the MiG-29 had a remarkably smooth development and the integration of radar and avionics went very well in comparison.

    If the claims are true, then the PLAAF went to Russia just in the right time (1990) to see "fully operational" Su-27's.
    Last edited by adeptitus; 09-07-2006 at 04:10 PM.

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    maozedong is offline Banned Idiot
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    Re: Why didn't China buy the MiG-29?


    there is another reason that china didn't buy the Mig-29 because:
    after Sovet Union broke down,many Mig-29 left in western from east German,so,USA cheak it all over and use it to be a target of airforce training.
    later,US bought 9 of Mig-29 from Russia,these Mig-29 are so lucky,they join to USAF as a target of training.
    in the earlly of 90' century,the Russian thought western is their friend because russia is already became a "democracy country",and they were so poor,then they sold those Mig-29 to US.
    include so many reason of above posts,there is nobody wants to buy Mig-29 any more, not only China.

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    Re: Why didn't China buy the MiG-29?

    Quote Originally Posted by maozedong View Post

    there is another reason that china didn't buy the Mig-29 because:
    after Sovet Union broke down,many Mig-29 left in western from east German,so,USA cheak it all over and use it to be a target of airforce training.
    later,US bought 9 of Mig-29 from Russia,these Mig-29 are so lucky,they join to USAF as a target of training.
    in the earlly of 90' century,the Russian thought western is their friend because russia is already became a "democracy country",and they were so poor,then they sold those Mig-29 to US.
    include so many reason of above posts,there is nobody wants to buy Mig-29 any more, not only China.

    FYI yes ex. German MiG-29 were incorporated in Luftwaffe and yes they were tested in exercises whit Western fighters. On other hand this was old export models based on first batch from early 1980s…

    Also Russians newer sold MiG-29 to USA…USA obtained 21 MiG-29 during 1997 from Moldova (14 MiG-29C) and not in early 1990s… So try to check some facts next time...

    Reason was simple early MiG-29 was short range interceptor and wasn’t suitable for large country like China and Su-27 was at the time more capable fighter.

    And FYI Yemen joust bought 32 MiG-29s and they aren’t only country interested in 29s, India is buying MiG-29K…
    "Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth. " Marcus Aurelius

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    maozedong is offline Banned Idiot
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    Re: Why didn't China buy the MiG-29?


    maybe you are right,thank you.
    but do yu know when the US order Mig-29? when China order Su27?
    first time of Su27 came to china about 1995,second time about 1997.
    I am not sure the exatlly time,it's hard to list correct time due to China defence secret.
    when China ordered Su27 about 1992,in the same time Russia offer China to buy Mig-29,in the same time some Mig-29 was in the hand of US,if you were chinese leader,what were you think?
    in 1992,those Mig-29 in German suppose to be 80'century,what's wrong?
    later the US bought 14 Mig-29,10 years ago I read the newspaper that said they bought 9, anyway thank you for correct it.
    Yeman buy Mig-29,thank you for this news.but from 1989 to now? dosn't make sense,seems China sale J7 is better,from 80'century to now already 600,CAC get a 29 J7 order from a country(don't know english name,same kind of Yamen)
    India may not buy Mig-29,you think they buy for carrier?in fact,they have many choice.last decade they bought French Mirage-2000 and Su30mki.
    I don't think they will buy Mig-29,because Pakistan will get F16 from US.
    I just think Mig-29 exatlly is the trianing target of F16.
    in 1992,China just have J7,J8,they need both,J10 until 2002-2004 service in PLAF.
    I want to tell you both Su27 and MIg-29 not too expensive,half goods and half cash,Mig-29 is much cheaper than Su27,if Mig-29 was not so much problem,why not buy 50 MIg-29 with 50 Su27 together? for a decade.
    Mig-29 export type is not very good, but Russia airforce use type is better.
    uselly Mig-29 sale market is in middle east and India,but in the last 15 years it lost the market,and Vietname should be the market too.

  15. #15
    tphuang's Avatar
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    Re: Why didn't China buy the MiG-29?

    Quote Originally Posted by maozedong View Post

    maybe you are right,thank you.
    but do yu know when the US order Mig-29? when China order Su27?
    first time of Su27 came to china about 1995,second time about 1997.
    I am not sure the exatlly time,it's hard to list correct time due to China defence secret.
    when China ordered Su27 about 1992,in the same time Russia offer China to buy Mig-29,in the same time some Mig-29 was in the hand of US,if you were chinese leader,what were you think?
    in 1992,those Mig-29 in German suppose to be 80'century,what's wrong?
    later the US bought 14 Mig-29,10 years ago I read the newspaper that said they bought 9, anyway thank you for correct it.
    Yeman buy Mig-29,thank you for this news.but from 1989 to now? dosn't make sense,seems China sale J7 is better,from 80'century to now already 600,CAC get a 29 J7 order from a country(don't know english name,same kind of Yamen)
    India may not buy Mig-29,you think they buy for carrier?in fact,they have many choice.last decade they bought French Mirage-2000 and Su30mki.
    I don't think they will buy Mig-29,because Pakistan will get F16 from US.
    I just think Mig-29 exatlly is the trianing target of F16.
    in 1992,China just have J7,J8,they need both,J10 until 2002-2004 service in PLAF.
    I want to tell you both Su27 and MIg-29 not too expensive,half goods and half cash,Mig-29 is much cheaper than Su27,if Mig-29 was not so much problem,why not buy 50 MIg-29 with 50 Su27 together? for a decade.
    Mig-29 export type is not very good, but Russia airforce use type is better.
    uselly Mig-29 sale market is in middle east and India,but in the last 15 years it lost the market,and Vietname should be the market too.
    hmm, you really need to do research. China got its first batch of su-27 in 1992. The second batch starting from 1996 and the thrid batch in 2000.

    India has plenty of Mig-29s. There is no reason why they would not purchase more Mig-29s with its increased range and improved avionics.

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