Let ze flame war begin: this is the YF-23 Black Widow (28 HQ Photos)

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  • Robert

    Totally awesome!!!. I always felt the YF-23 was cooler than the YF-22. Plus, I'm a McDonald Douglas fan because of the F-15.

    • Ben

      Damned, McDonald's! I hope I'll get an YF-23 in my Happy Meal some day…

  • limerick3411

    Can someone explain to me why we didnt pick the YF-23? That thing is sexy as hell… they're both ridiculously expensive. The JSF is cheaper than both. But the YF-23 just looks so AWESOME!

    • Jimmy5923

      There are a lot of questions about this still being asked and not answered. The only thing I seen that made a little bit of sense was even though the F-23 was slightly better in speed and stealth, they were unable to fully test the weapon characteristics of the F-23 by the deadline. Also the F-22's computer system was designed from tried and tested methods and would be easier and cheaper to upgrade. Plus the F-22 is a bit cheaper.

      • http://twitter.com/redcat1 @redcat1

        What I seem to remember is that the 22 was a bit more agile with the thrust vector controls while the 23 was stealthier and was design to land on aircraft carriers. I think, in the long term, the US would have been better off with the aircraft that could land on naval vessels. IMHO. Pus, the YF23 is just sexy as hell.

    • Frostback

      Politics primarily. Northrop and Mcdonnell were still smarting over the B-2 cost overruns and Boeing group was considered alot more stable.

    • salty and green goo

      YF-23 wasn't as agile and maneuverable as YF-22. I remember reading about YF-23 engineers saying they built YF-23 longer than they should because of initial requirements that were later dropped. They could have made it more agile. Anyways, with new radar tech, you cant rely solely on stealth.

    • atf343

      I heard somewhere the YF-22 performed a little better than the YF-23 in low altitude maneuverability. Then again, checking your replies, that above might just be one of several nails in its coffin

  • NotaTrap

    #5…millions of dollars worth of aircraft there and we've got shit resting on old mattresses….awesome!

  • MRBlonde83

    Because the 22 was better!

  • drksdr

    Now that's some 21st Century shit right there…

    I love the Raptor but the YF-23 makes her look almost conventional.

    The Black Widow practically taxied out of the Macross anime.

  • Rich

    The YF23 is visually very reminiscent of the SR21 Blackbird. How about a statistical comparo? For that matter, how about performance, armament, speed, etc. stats accompanying any weapons system pix.

  • equalizermax

    These are all classified… Thanks Americans for sharing your top secret weapons…

  • Briankun

    Total waste of money.

  • Brother Maynard

    #10 good stuff

  • Anonymous

    Awesome pics. My dad worked on the F-23. I’m surprised and glad that some of them are still in existence.

  • Simon

    #14 Can I has hi-res XB-70?

  • AKyle

    Some folks have already kinda covered this but hopefully to put it more concisely. All in all the YF-23 was the better platform based on tests up to that point: stealthier, faster, quicker build time based on using existing systems from other planes like the landing gear from the F/A-18, lower Ifrared signature. The only thing the at that time YF-22 beat it on was low speed maneuverability (key for dogfighting but lets be honest, when you have over the horizon radar capability you're not dog fighting and anyone who things you are is just a fighter jock or Top Gun freak longing for the glory days that are done).
    The reason Lockheed got the bid was that they did the production a little quicker and the DoD trusted them not to go over budget (Northrop Grumman was/is behind on production and running over budget on the B-2 Spirit platform… still).

    • bbdry

      I think prioritizing the requirement for high maneuverability was legit, after all, an internal cannon was also required in the design. It was a hard lesson learned when USAF thought dog fighting was obsolete until they had to come up with external gunpods to shoot the enemies. Russians have sacrificed some stealth to gain super maneuverability on their latest fighter design.

  • Dude

    Do know what's really amazing about the F 22 and (YF 23) ? In 1989 when I was in the USAF our one Capt'n had worked on the Avionics of both several years prior, and they were already considered near to obsolete compared to what was planned. As sophisticated as they are, they have been sucking money from tax payers for a long, long time. And still, never used in combat, never earned it's pay to this day.

  • vinaKeeloania

    mjog ahugavert, takk

  • CDNwolf

    You Americans sure do have some cool toys

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