Hey guys today I’ll be suggesting the F-104A-19 for the Chinese tech tree
The F-104A-19 in ROCAF service started in 1970 when a squadron of them (originally from the 319th TFS of the USAF) arrived in Taiwan as part of the Alishan 6 project. They helped bolster the ROCAF’s numbers after the original batch of F-104A’s stationed in Taiwan were transferred over to the royal Jordanian Air Force in 1965. Initially they served with the 11th battalion of the 41st squadron. However in 1974 they were transferred to the 8th Tactical Fighter Squadron (TFS) of the 3rd air group at Chiang Ching Kuo airbase after the 8th TFS F-104G’s were merged with the 7th and 28th TFS.
While in service with the ROCAF they were mainly used as high altitude air superiority fighters. Taiwanese pilots had to wear special full pressure suits when they went on missions, as the F-104A-19 was one of the only fighter aircraft of the ROCAF that could reach extremely high altitudes. Some pilots even reported being able to see satellites orbiting earth as tiny white dots. They also trained with the US airforce’s RB-57’s, where they would meet them at 60,000 ft, simulating Soviet interceptors.
In 1980 each of the F-104A’s were thoroughly checked and repaired in the “High Line Program” as the aging aircraft had issues with their avionics, causing performance issues that led to accidents. On February 8th 1988, F-104A 4243’s engine stalled and crashed, killing its pilot. Shortly after this incident the decision was made to decommission all of the remaining F-104A’s.
Length: 16.7 m (54.8 ft)
Wingspan: 7.2 m (21.9 ft)
Height: 4.1 m (13.5 ft)
Power: 17,500 lbs of thrust (with afterburners), ~11,870 lbs of thrust (w/o afterburners)
1 x 20mm M61A1 Vulcan (725 rounds)
2 x AIM-9B, AIM-9E, AIM-9N, AIM-9J and AIM-9P4 (all aspect)
In game the F-104A-19 would be a good high tier jet for the Chinese tech tree. With its impressive thrust to weight and access to later AIM-9 sidewinder variants it would be the best F-104A in game. Like the base F-104A the best tactic for this aircraft would be to boom and zoom enemies, as even though it has a better thrust it still has poor dogfighting ability. Its Vulcan cannon should make quick work of any enemies it gets hits on and its improved AIM-9 sidewinders should be enough to down enemies in air battles. Its biggest downside however is that it has no countermeasures, meaning it would be difficult to evade higher tier missiles.
F-104A,B,C&D flight manual, 1 June 1968