Air Combat Maneuvering
premature reversal on your part will allow the bogey an opportunity to get in phase and help solve his
guns solution. Continue a series of reversals with coordinated use of aileron and rudder. Keep back stick
to maintain maximum AOA without excessive buffet. Avoid excessive AOB to prevent your nose from
falling through the horizon which would increase your airspeed and, consequently, increase your down
range travel. Remember, as you get slower, use more rudder and less aileron.
As you cross the bogeys flight path, consider TCA in determining your next move. If the TCA is large
when the bogey nears the pass, consider disengaging.
Defensively, a rolling scissors, Figure 22, exploits an in-close horizontal and vertical overshoot and forces
the bogey out in front by reducing your forward vector.
You will set up with the bogey on a medium-angle perch. As the bogey attempts a BRA, execute a slightly
nose-low hard defensive counter turn into the bogey. Make the turn sufficiently strong to prevent the
bogey from pulling behind your 3/9 line. Maintain the turn until the bogey crosses on top of your flight
path. As he overshoots, commence a defensive pitchup by leveling your wings, keeping 17 units AOA,
and pulling vertically to approximately 60 degrees nose-high. As your energy dissipates, begin a roll-off in
the direction of the bogeys horizontal overshoot using aileron and rudder. From this nose-high attitude,
continue pulling aft as you adjust your rate of roll to keep your lift vector on the bogey to create a
horizontal overshoot. To prevent generating excess airspeed and increasing down-range travel, avoid
burying your nose when inverted at the top of the roller. From this point, the roller is identical to that
explained in the offensive section.
Remember, the altitude required to successfully complete a nose-low roll through the vertical is
approximately 2,500 ft. As the deck becomes a factor, one of you must either convert the roller to a
flattened rolling scissors or a horizontal scissors or disengage. At this point, there is little difference
between what an offensive fighter or a defensive fighter would do to convert a roller. Refer to the rolling
scissors in the offensive section to review those procedures.
Figure 22: ROLLING SCISSORS (DEFENSIVE)
Whether you are offensive or defensive, survival is the ultimate goal of ACMeven beyond that of killing
the bogey. The best fighter pilots are actually those who know when and how to disengage. During an
T-45C Revision 1