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Any thoughts on the Viggen?


rkk01
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Not a module I own, but looking at a possible sale purchase...

 

is it an easy aircraft to fly?  
How does the fast low level strike flight profile feel?  Fun or too much going on???


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4 hours ago, rkk01 said:

is it an easy aircraft to fly?

 

Yes it is, it has 

 

4 hours ago, rkk01 said:

How does the fast low level strike flight profile feel?  Fun or too much going on???

 

I'd say fun, and there's definitely not a lot going on in terms of complexity - it's largely select a weapon or mode (which is super easy and can be done well in advance), flip up the safety, wait for an appropriate cue in the HUD and hold the weapons release.

 

The only things that are more involved is the BK 90 and RB-15F, which have some additional set-up that you can do. there's also the RB-05A which is MCLOS - relying on you to steer the missile directly.

 

Overall I'd definitely recommend the Viggen, if you haven't seen this I recommend you check it out, and if you want more depth I'd recommend this series.

 

They're both quite old so a number of things have changed, but one thing that hasn't is the overall operation.

Modules I own: F-14A/B, Mi-24P, AJS 37, F-5E-3, MiG-21bis, F-16CM, F/A-18C, Supercarrier, Mi-8MTV-2, UH-1H, Mirage 2000C, FC3, MiG-15bis, Ka-50, A-10C (+ A-10C II), P-47D, P-51D, C-101, Yak-52, WWII Assets, CA, NS430, Hawk

Terrains I own: Syria, The Channel, SoH/PG, Marianas

System (RIP my old PC): Dell XPS 15 9570 w/ Intel i7-8750H, NVIDIA GTX 1050Ti Max-Q, 16GB DDR4, 500GB Samsung PM871 SSD (upgraded with 1TB Samsung 970 EVO Plus SSD)

VKB Gunfighter Mk.II w. MCG Pro, MFG Crosswind V3 Graphite

Dreams: https://uk.pcpartpicker.com/list/bG9bBc

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It's a very unique aircraft compared to most western or eastern jets - given it's mostly analogue and works off of weapon mode rotary knobs and the CK37 computer with its codes it is rather easy to pick up (easier than a F-16 or Hornet with their numerous pages and settings). What the Viggen is really good at is pre-planned low level pop attacks, or anti-ship strikes, even in bad weather. It is also an excellent visual interceptor, being able to carry 4x AIM-9L's and 2x AIM-9 J's. Flying wise it is fairly easy to fly and it's pretty stable - one thing that can catch you off guard is the transsonic mach tuck requiring substantial amounts of trim. However, it is still in Early Access and has its isues like going to fast on the deck, taking absurd amounts of damage and flying without wings etc. As well as various other bugs with weapons and systems. The Viggen was my first full fidelity modules in DCS and I truly enjoyed my time with it until the Tomcat came along. Overall I'd really recommend it on a sale as you'll probably have a ton of fun with it and something new to leard. Who doesn't love Mach 1.45 tree skimming and valley flying? 😉 


Edited by Skysurfer
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It's my favorite module by a wide margin.  Very easy to fly if you just want to sight-see or do some canyon runs, and has lots of power with the three stage afterburner.  The thrill of low level flying is unmatched by any other module (at least among what I own: F-86, 5, 14, 15, 16, 18).  But it requires some discipline if you want to be accurate with weapons since the primary bombs it carries are unguided.  You will learn to be aware of your airspeed and altitude at all times from quick glances at the cockpit gauges, while using the very intuitive HUD to deliver  your weapons, which is almost completely graphical and geometrical with very little text.  It predates the computing revolution of the 90s and 2000s, so while it was very advanced technology for its time (onboard programmable computer, inertial navigation with terrain measurements, and a ground mapping/terrain avoidance radar), it's still primarily a fast jet with some electronics attached to it, rather than a supercomputer with wings.

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"Subsonic is below Mach 1, supersonic is up to Mach 5. Above Mach 5 is hypersonic. And reentry from space, well, that's like Mach a lot."

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If you're looking for a something to own at airquake, it's not the jet for you. If you like ground attack missions (including but not limited to low level interdiction), it's imo the best module in DCS, particularly if you enjoy single player.

1 hour ago, Skysurfer said:

isues like going to fast on the deck

This particular horse has been discussed to death. The Viggen's (and many, many other aircraft) top speed on the deck is a safety measure due to thermal effects, which are not modelled in DCS. It also only applies when the jet is clean, which is almost never the case.

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16 minutes ago, TLTeo said:

If you're looking for a something to own at airquake, it's not the jet for you. If you like ground attack missions (including but not limited to low level interdiction), it's imo the best module in DCS, particularly if you enjoy single player.

This particular horse has been discussed to death. The Viggen's (and many, many other aircraft) top speed on the deck is a safety measure due to thermal effects, which are not modelled in DCS. It also only applies when the jet is clean, which is almost never the case.

 

Have to disagree here completely. You can do mostly the same speed with a full A2A loadout. The Mig-21 for example models these limitations - (your engine cuts out). Since the Viggen doesn't have variable intakes I assume the same would happen to it as well. It is simply a matter of choice not to model it than anything else since the data and limitations are clearly present in the manuals. But I would have to agree with that it's definitely top 3 or top 4 of all current DCS modules.


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Again, the Viggen's top speed at sea level is set by thermal issues on the aircraft skin, much like the Viper with its canopy. These limits are not modelled in -any- DCS module, and has nothing to do with whether the engine gets enough airflow and cuts out.

 

Much like the aircraft can pull more than the 6-7g it's rated for, it can also exceed the Mach 1.2 sea level limit it's rated for, and because it's DCS, we can get away with doing stupid stuff we wouldn't be able to in real life. That says absolutely nothing about whether its top speed on the deck an error in the FM or not.

 

At altitude its top speed is Mach ~1.85, specifically because of the intake shape, and that's in agreement with the manual.

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Am 18.4.2021 um 09:51 schrieb rkk01:

Not a module I own, but looking at a possible sale purchase...

 

is it an easy aircraft to fly?  
How does the fast low level strike flight profile feel?  Fun or too much going on???

 

 

Well made, very easy to fly and handle, the only complicated thing is TAKT / CK37... That weapon computer takes some time. Other than that, it excels as a low level striker and in the anit-ship role.

Easier to fly than the Viper, and this is something I wouldn't say about many planes. Requires trimming, but is stable and the only thing you need to take care of is a compressor stall- if it bangs, don't pull further. It has thrust reversers, so you never run out of runway. It even has autothrottle, which is amazing for an 80's plane. To land, you just point the FPM on the runway threshold, preselect thrust reverser and engage autothrottle. Flare a little to not spill your coffee, put her down gently, get the nose wheel down and throttle up for the thrust reverser. Wheelbrakes are cool but optional.

If you expect some complicated avionics and multirole, then this is not your plane. If you look for a plane that is awesomely easy to fly, fast, and love low level strikes or anti-ship then this is it. It performs pretty well on altitude as well.

Speaking swedish is no must, but there is no english cockpit. But it isn't complicated, only a few words. After all, english is a viking learning latin and we all have the same letters.

If you are swede and do not own it, this is considered to be traitory.

Says a german.

The only reason this isn't #1 on my list is that I like the Viper since like 20 years now and also like some BVR stuff. The viggen rates second, because it's awesome to blow through the treetops. Haven't fully learned it yet tho, but can employ most weapons.

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In order to enjoy the Viggen you need to understand that it was made to attack pre-planned targets, and not loitering over an area and attacking targets of opportunity like a A-10 / Hornet / Harrier could do. Also, the radar is used for navigation, with limited targeting capabilities. 

 

Other than that, it's very fast, stable, powerful and fun to fly. One of my favorite modules. 

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The viggen is possibly the fastest ground strike platform we have in game. If you enjoy spending some time to plan a route, flying it at low alt and high speed, popping up, dropping all your shit and skeddadeling like mad, you're going to enjoy this plane 😄


It's a platform dedicated to low level strikes, and anti-ship work, which means it got rid of everything it didn't need for that. That includes internal gun and countermeasure. You can still equip them, but in pods, that take up your weapon stations.


Like everyone before me said, don't expect to loiter around killing 20 tanks like an A-10, or massive range munitions, like a hornet or a viper. This is a manual machine. You'll have to get to the grips with the enemy, and make liberal use of *very* low level flying. masking SAMs behind trees is not an uncommon practice for the viggen.


The airframe was initially meant to drop bombs in overfly attacks (which sometimes is still the best option), which means it's very *FAST*
A clean viggen can get up to mach 1.3 on the deck. With light A/G stores (say, 4 mav) you'll reach about M1.1-1.2

It flies really nicely. It's a pretty stable platform above m0.5. It features attitude and barometric altitude hold. It also requires trimming, especially in the transonic region. Watch out for Mach Tuck! It can quickly end your run, if you forget about it.

The viggen also features an A/G radar, with ground, sea and terrain avoidance modes, with range up to 120km
It can provide ranging info for A/A engagements, but that's it
The main NAV source for the viggen is an INS supported by the TERNAV system, which essentially looks at the ground features, and tries to figure out where you are based on them. Funky shit, and works really well too. Allows for accurate nav at all times (below 500m alt)

A quick overview of the stores:

Dumb:
4x4 M/71: 125Kg bomb, available in non-retarded and chute-retarded versions. Unfortunately, non-direct hits will struggle with everything armored because DCS ground unit damage models. Pretty good against runways.

4x6 ARAK: 135mm (I think) Rockets, in 6 rocket launchers. Can be launched 1 from each pod (for 6 shots of 4 rockets each), or all at once. Weapon of choice if you need unguided precision and a heavy hit
2x AKAN: 30mm gunpod, which includes ground and air attack modes. Chonky bullets that hit hard, but not enough for MBT's

Guided A/G:
2x Rb-05 - Bullpup-like hand guided missile. Pretty big warhead, also has an A/A mode, but it's meant for bombers, as you'll struggle to hit anything smaller. Can kill pretty much anything. The hitting it is the hard part.
4x Rb-75 - Licensed copy of a maverick, and your bread an butter against armor. Comes in 3 variants: A - Normal, B - Zoomed in seeker, T - Enlarged warhead. All 3 are TV guided
4x Bk-90 - A gliding cluster munition, with some 10km range, that can be loaded with a lot of small HE pellets, or less, larger HEAT pellets. Used to be a devastating weapon, but again, DCS ground units damage models changed that. Still a pretty good weapon against SAM sites, as you don't have to get too close, but it'll struggle against armor.

Anitship:
2x Rb-04 - 70's Anti-ship missile. 25-30ish km range, and limited programming. Works a bit like a maddog fox3, just goes for whatever it sees. Looks sick when deployed in groups. Goes for sea skimming immediatly
2x Rb-15F - 90's Anti-ship missile. 70km range, and wide range of on the fly programming capability. Needs a few waypoints to work, but you can set them from the radar display. It can be programmed to fly low enough to evade most self defense missiles fired from the ships you're about to slap. Actually useful, unlike the Harpoon.

 

You can also take some A/A missiles, most often on the outboard most pylons, which cannot take any other weapon:
6x Rb-24 - AIM-9B trash. You might be better of just not taking them, even if it's your only option. Extra drag, not much more.
6x Rb-24J - AIM-9P3. A somewhat capable missile. Similar to the one available on the F-5. And the missile you'll have on most of the time because:
4x Rb-74 - AIM-9L. A great missile, but cannot be mounted on the dedicated A/A pylons, only on the 4 A/G hardpoints 😕 Great to use when going against ships, as you can only take 2 anti-ship missiles anyway.

Countermeasures:
2x Flare/Chaff pod - Yes
1x U-22 and U-22/A pods - Often paired with the countermeasure pod. Has ELINT capability for searching for SAM sites by triangulation, which is woefully underused in DCS, as well as jamming capabilities. the /A is a more modern version of the pod, with a bit more capability. Essentially, there's no point in taking the old one if the new one is available.

It's worth noting that many weapons cannot be mixed, as they use same weapon selector settings. Usually taking just 1 type of munition is a good way to go about it


All of these weapons are designed to be used in pre planned attacks, but there's some that can be used on targets of opportunity. Mavs are really good for it. Same for Rb-05. Rb-15F can also be used on a different target than originally intended with relatively little modification to the waypoints.

However, as i m writing this, the Viggen CTD's in multiplayer. The issue is a result of DCS 2.7, and is being worked on.
Might be worth waiting for a fix, if you wanna use it online.
 


Edited by BonerCat
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Modules:

F-14, F-15C, F-16C, F/A-18C, M-2000C, A-10C, A-10C II, AV-8B N/A, MiG-29, Su-33, MiG-21 Bis, F-5E, P-51D, Ka-50, Mi-8, Sa 342, UH-1H, Combined Arms

 

Maps and others:

Persian Gulf, Syria, Normandy, WWII Assets, NS 430 + Mi-8 NS 430

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7 hours ago, BonerCat said:

The main NAV source for the viggen is a TERNAV system, which essentially looks at the ground features, and tries to figure out where you are based on them. Funky shit, and works really well too. Allows for accurate nav at all times (below 500m alt)

That was a good write up, but I want to correct one thing. The main nav source is the inertial navigation system (INS).  The TERNAV function is supplementary to correct for the inevitable INS drift. 

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"Subsonic is below Mach 1, supersonic is up to Mach 5. Above Mach 5 is hypersonic. And reentry from space, well, that's like Mach a lot."

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11 minutes ago, Machalot said:

That was a good write up, but I want to correct one thing. The main nav source is the inertial navigation system (INS).  The TERNAV function is supplementary to correct for the inevitable INS drift. 

Good catch! Edited
Was writing from memory, so it must've slipped my mind

 

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Modules:

F-14, F-15C, F-16C, F/A-18C, M-2000C, A-10C, A-10C II, AV-8B N/A, MiG-29, Su-33, MiG-21 Bis, F-5E, P-51D, Ka-50, Mi-8, Sa 342, UH-1H, Combined Arms

 

Maps and others:

Persian Gulf, Syria, Normandy, WWII Assets, NS 430 + Mi-8 NS 430

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Additional pedantic corrections

1) the Viggen does not have a gyro-powered INS, it has a doppler navigation radar suite, which is basically accomplishes the same as an INS, but worse. That is why without TERNAV you have to work harder than with e.g. the Tomcat to keep the system aligned. The way TERNAV works is it constantly compares the data from the doppler navigation with a database stored in the cartridge (fun fact - it's in the cartridge because the onboard computer has too little memory to store terrain data!), and constantly takes automated fixes for you. TERNAV only works when the radar altimeter does, so for high-lo-high mission profiles you may still need to refine your navigation a bit.

2) carrying countermeasures externally rather than have them built into the jet is not unusual for the time and is unrelated to its role as a strike fighter

3) a puppy dies every time someone says the Viggen can't loiter over an area and kill stuff. You literally can carry the same amount of Mavs as a Hornet can (and, technically, more than a Viper should...). It's fine, I promise. It's just that people's expectation of what a2g is are grossly warped by the A-10 and fantasy loadouts (seriously, IRL it really does not carry the triple Mav racks that people love so much, with good reason). There are several missions in both Viggen campaigns that have you do just that.

4) one more thing worth pointing out about the Viggen's Mavs is because they are an older generation and you have no fancy MFDs and/or TGPs, they are harder and more annoying to use than in the Viper et al, mostly because they are not stabilized. My personal workaround is to spot the targets I'm going after on the radar, update a waypoint to that location (or create a new one), and the only fine tune my aim with the Mav seekerhead. Much more involved than the point and shoot stuff you do in 4th gen jets.

5) use this app for ELINT, it's amazing https://forums.eagle.ru/topic/187366-elint-data-web-app/


Edited by TLTeo
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1 hour ago, TLTeo said:

Additional pedantic corrections

1) the Viggen does not have a gyro-powered INS, it has a doppler navigation radar suite, which is basically accomplishes the same as an INS, but worse.

It must use gyros of some kind, because an INS can't function without attitude data. 

"Subsonic is below Mach 1, supersonic is up to Mach 5. Above Mach 5 is hypersonic. And reentry from space, well, that's like Mach a lot."

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Let me rephrase - in an INS, once the thing is aligned, you don't need any external inputs to calculate your position. The unit itself is capable of that, it keeps integrating what its gyros/accelerometers are sensing to compute the position, independently of other systems on the aircraft. That's how it works e.g. on the Tomcat.

 

The Viggen navigation suite does not work like that (as described on page 130 of the manual), which is why you don't need to align it. It takes inputs from all the flight data the aircraft instruments/sensors provide (like the jet's pitot tube, accelerometers, attitude sensors, etc etc), and from that external input works out where you are with respect to where you started. That is also why you need to take a fix at the start of the runway before taking off. On the plus side, this is much faster and simpler. On the downside, it's more prone to drift, which is why Doppler nav systems (like the Viggens, or the F-100 or F-105, to name a couple that afaik should be similar) were replaced by INS in the first place (or why the Viggen got TERNAV to do fixes automatically, rather than burdening the pilot with them).


Edited by TLTeo
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9 minutes ago, TLTeo said:

Let me rephrase - in an INS, once the thing is aligned, you don't need any external inputs to calculate your position. The unit itself is capable of that, it keeps integrating what its gyros/accelerometers are sensing to compute the position, independently of other systems on the aircraft. That's how it works e.g. on the Tomcat.

 

The Viggen navigation suite does not work like that (as described on page 130 of the manual), which is why you don't need to align it. It takes inputs from all the flight data the aircraft instruments/sensors provide (like the jet's pitot tube, accelerometers, attitude sensors, etc etc), and from that external input works out where you are with respect to where you started. That is also why you need to take a fix at the start of the runway before taking off. On the plus side, this is much faster and simpler. On the downside, it's more prone to drift, which is why Doppler nav systems (like the Viggens, or the F-100 or F-105, to name a couple that afaik should be similar) were replaced by INS in the first place (or why the Viggen got TERNAV to do fixes automatically, rather than burdening the pilot with them).

 

Thanks for elaborating. I was thinking technically and you were writing systematically. 

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"Subsonic is below Mach 1, supersonic is up to Mach 5. Above Mach 5 is hypersonic. And reentry from space, well, that's like Mach a lot."

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Seems like I may have inadvertently overlooked the Viggen...

 

Odd, as my “most desired” DCS modules would be a Tornado or Jaguar, having grown up watching the RAF’s low-level training in the UK

 

 


Edited by rkk01
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I own it but honestly the lack of english cockpit is a bit of a bum and has prevented me to play a lot with it. Probably has made a lot of simmers to overlook it and it is a shame, because is an amazing module of an amazing and really special aircraft, arguably the most exotic in the DCS stable.

 

If it doesn't put you off, I'd recommend anyone to give it a try.

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2 minutes ago, Scrofa said:

I own it but honestly the lack of english cockpit is a bit of a bum and has prevented me to play a lot with it. Probably has made a lot of simmers to overlook it and it is a shame, because is an amazing module of an amazing and really special aircraft, arguably the most exotic in the DCS stable.

 

If it doesn't put you off, I'd recommend anyone to give it a try.

If you turn on cockpit tooltips it gives you English labels. 

"Subsonic is below Mach 1, supersonic is up to Mach 5. Above Mach 5 is hypersonic. And reentry from space, well, that's like Mach a lot."

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26 minutes ago, Machalot said:

If you turn on cockpit tooltips it gives you English labels. 

I'm aware there are ways to go around the problem, including an english cockpit mod. But is not far fetched to think that any fictional operator (and we do make up fictional scenarios here, don't we?) would require a cockpit in other language, and lets face it, english is the most widespread one.

 

Not just saying for my own' sake, I honestly think it would help module sales. As much as many of us love swedish aircraft, learning swedish, albeit a limited amount, is usually not very high in people's wishlist.

 

(not specific for swedish, really, just fighting with systems, aerodynamics, tactics, real-time scenarios when playing is the real purpose of all this and adding a challenging language ...)

 


Edited by Scrofa
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Ive been caught out by the “English” cockpit versions though, as they also change the units from metric to imperial... and then all the rotation, stall, touchdown speeds etc in manuals and training mission don’t match up with the cockpit displays... better to learn each bird as it actually is

 

 

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1 hour ago, Scrofa said:

I'm aware there are ways to go around the problem, including an english cockpit mod. But is not far fetched to think that any fictional operator (and we do make up fictional scenarios here, don't we?) would require a cockpit in other language, and lets face it, english is the most widespread one.

 

Not just saying for my own' sake, I honestly think it would help module sales. As much as many of us love swedish aircraft, learning swedish, albeit a limited amount, is usually not very high in people's wishlist.

 

(not specific for swedish, really, just fighting with systems, aerodynamics, tactics, real-time scenarios when playing is the real purpose of all this and adding a challenging language ...)

 

 

I used tooltips when learning the aircraft, then found I didn't need them anymore, not because I learned the Swedish but because I knew the positions of everything. 


Edited by Machalot
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"Subsonic is below Mach 1, supersonic is up to Mach 5. Above Mach 5 is hypersonic. And reentry from space, well, that's like Mach a lot."

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10 hours ago, TLTeo said:

I don't know any Swedish and haven't felt the need for any translation. There are only a handful of indications that you can't intuitively translate to English, and those are easy enough to memorize.

+1 and on top of that i am able today to understand " till and fran" ^^

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13 hours ago, Scrofa said:

Not just saying for my own' sake, I honestly think it would help module sales. As much as many of us love swedish aircraft, learning swedish, albeit a limited amount, is usually not very high in people's wishlist.

I'd wager a pretty safe guess that any lack of sales would stem from the Viggen being a relatively unknown, hyper-specialised striker with a very specific mission profile, moreso than people's fear of Swedish. 😄

 

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