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Ukrainian lego Mig-21bis sold to Croatia.


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From BMPD blog:


   Croatian media continue to "untwist" scandal with the repair and purchase of Ukrainian MiG-21bis fighters.


   In particular, the newspaper "Jutarnji list" notes that one plane had one wing of Ukrainian origin, another belonged to the MiG-21 from Algeria. Internal fuel tanks were used were made in the USSR, although practically unused, but in the contract they were supposed to be new. Fuselages of five "Ukrainian" MiG-21 actually had Bulgarian origin, despite the fact that they have been written off in Bulgaria itself. On airplanes, there are two fixed plates with serial number - on plane that was transmitted to Croatia had one plate painted over, and the second is attached later.




   There were also a technical problems. So, on the repaired aircraft "friend or foe" system didn't work well enough, five "Ukrainian" MiG-21 had leaking fuel tanks, navigation system made by CLS production (the Czech company) was not installed in time and worked poorly, radars on all aircraft have technical breakdowns.

   Also, all planes had unsatisfactory condition of hydraulic system, there have been cases when the landing gear could not get out of their niches. Two planes had engine failers in flight, which means that the quality of repair is unsatisfactory or it was not performed at all.



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I was going to ask why anyone in this day and age would buy MiG-21s, but the article explained that it was a political stunt.


For heaven's sake get YAK-130s instead or something.


mig-21s are still pretty good for the price, and are a much better interceptor outright than a yak-130, able to cover more real estate faster. Which is what most budget airfroces look for

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Is it?  I haven't compared detailed performance charts for either type to be honest.


A lot of mid 1960s interceptors are blazing fast... until you actually put weapons on them, and then they struggle to even break the sound barrier.  Even more recent types are the same way:



That's for an F-16C.  Clean it will happily go to mach 2 with afterburner, and even go slightly supersonic without afterburner at optimum altitude.  As soon as you put a couple of air to air missiles on it (drag index 50), it slows down a lot.  Put a big air to ground load on (drag index 150), and it's basically MiG-19 slow. 


And I would think that a shiny new MiG-21 is relatively easy to maintain, but older aircraft are harder to keep in the air.  Everything is worn out and rubbing up against the maintenance intervals.  The US Navy could get better flight hours per hour of maintenance out of F/A-18s than A-6s by a wide margin, and the F/A-18 is a vastly more complicated aircraft.

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