Iron Heart Armament Iron Tiger Attack / Support Helicopter:

Iron Heart Armament started by producing the Iron Eagle attack helicopter. Many customers prefer a helicopter over either a Sky Cycle or a larger thrust based VTOL craft. The larger VTOL craft tend be far more expensive and often require much greater maintenance. The biggest weakness of a helicopter are its rotors but this weakness is not as bad as many state it to be. A large jet type VTOL craft can be knocked from the sky with the destruction of a thruster.

Of course, the Iron Eagle cannot be considered without weakness. More of the most criticized facts was that while it is designed to carry troops but not enough to be a major factor. It only can carry two passengers and usually operates with a crew of four. Compare that to the Soviet Hind helicopter which requires a crew of three and yet has a capacity for eight troops. It was decided that the Iron Eagle would be modified to carry additional troops.

Since the Iron Eagle is overbuilt, it does make for a design which is easy to modify. At the same time as a version of the Iron Eagle design to carry more troops was developed, an attack helicopter was developed with no troop capacity. This one became known as the Iron Cobra. At first, the larger attack helicopter was planned to be marketed as Iron Eagle II but there were significant design changes and it was decided that it would be given a new name.

It was christened the “Iron Tiger” with the first prototype flying in less than four months after development was begun. One reason why that development was as rapid as it was is because of the sharing of components between the Iron Tiger and the Iron Eagle. This also facilitated production with production started quite rapidly after testing of the prototype aircraft were completed. There was continued interest in the Iron Eagle so production was not completely stopped. As a result, fairly sizeable numbers of the Iron Tiger were produced, far more than the Iron Cobra which production was started just before the Coalition attacked and effectively destroyed the facilities.

The eventual tactic with operating these helicopters would have likely been to operate them teamed up with the much smaller Iron Cobra attack helicopters. Some mercenary companies have experimented with operating them with sky cycles as support. Some have also experimented with using pre-rifts designs as support. Due to sharing most of the same components with the Iron Eagle, maintenance has been relatively easy. Several groups produce repair parts although there appears little interest in anybody producing the helicopter itself. A group in Florida produces a helicopter filling a similar role.

The biggest change of the Iron Tiger when compared to the Iron Eagle is a much wider fuselage. This enables the helicopter to embark eight troops. Unlike the Iron Eagle, the crew is only two although a flight engineer can displace one of the troops. If carrying light power armors or cyborgs, generally the troop compliment is reduced from eight to six. There was some discussion of a cargo version of the Iron Tiger but it was never developed. The wider fuselage makes the helicopter a bit slower with a top speed of around 250 miles per hour. Propulsion is otherwise identical with both conventional liquid versions which use aviation fuel and fusion powered models. On the bonus side, the Iron Tiger is slightly tougher.

Weaponry is similar to the Iron Eagle but is slightly modified. The standard 30 mm chain gun is replaced by a lighter model. The original weapon was overbuilt and couple easily be made lighter. In addition, payload is decreased to twelve hundred rounds. The payload is still considered acceptable in most cases. Often, Iron Eagles come back with over half of their ammunition payload remaining. Eight medium range missiles are still carried although mini-missile payload is reduced from a total of forty-eight to thirty-two. This has received some criticism but it was needed to reduce weight of the helicopter while developing it. Some crews also prefer missile had points for a more flexible payload.

The only other complain is that some owners would like to have a light pulse laser mounted next to the 30 mm cannon for targets which the heavy cannon is likely a waste of ammunition. Some crews have added the weapon system although there are some problems tying the weapon into the fire control circuitry.

Model Type: IT-16AH
Vehicle Type: Attack Helicopter
Crew: Two (Pilot and Gunner / Co-Pilot) - Can carry a flight engineer at the expense of one soldier.
Troop Payload: Eight soldiers in full gear (Six human sized Cyborgs / Light Power Armors)

M.D.C. by Location:

IH-280-LW 30 mm Chain Gun (Nose - In "Turret")50
Mini-Missile Launchers (2; sides):80 each
Medium Range Missile launchers (2; Sides)80 each
[1] Main Rotor (4 Blades):80 (20 each blade)
[1] Tail:60
Landing Gear (3):10 each
Reinforced Cockpit:160
Side Doors (2):60 each
[2] Main Body:320

[1] Destroying the rear rotor or one of the main blades will cause the helicopter to fly at half speed, wobble and is -6 to parry, -3 to strike, and -40% on piloting skill/maneuvers. Smart pilots will land as soon as possible. Destroying the main top rotor will knock the helicopter out of the sky! Roll under the piloting skill -30% for a successful crash landing (due to the reinforced nature of the Iron Cobra, crew takes only half damage from an impact.
[2] Destroying the main body knocks the helicopter out of the sky and renders it completely useless.

Driving on Ground (Taxiing): Only possible for take offs and landings as well as for parking and storage. Speed is 40 mph (64 kph) when traveling and not on take off or landing. Helicopter can land and take off from primitive runways.
Flying: The Iron Tiger can hover stationary, VTOL, and travel at a maximum flight speed of 250 mph (402.3 kph / 217.1 knots) with a maximum ceiling (altitude) of 16,000 feet (4876.8 meters.) Cruising and attack speed vary, but tend to be between 100 and 200 mph (160 to 329 kph) and it has excellent VTOL capabilities.
Range: Nuclear: The nuclear energy source gives the Iron Tiger continual power but the jets overheat after 10 hours of continual use at speeds above 100 mph. or four hours if going above 200 mph (329 km). Going at 100 mph or below with occasional rest stops will allow the helicopter to travel for 40 continuous hours. Conventional: 400 miles (643 km)

Statistical Data:
Height: 15 feet (4.57 meters)
Width: Fuselage: 16.5 feet (5.02 meters) with missile launchers. Rotor: 45 feet (15.24 meters)
Length: 55 feet (16.78 meters)
Weight: 18,000 pounds (8,164.66 kg) empty and 24,000 pounds (10,886.22 kg) fully loaded.
Power System: Conventional Liquid Fuel or Nuclear Fusion (Should have an average life span of 15 years)
Cargo: 8 soldiers with full gear or 2200 lbs (1000 kg) of cargo internally.
Black Market Cost: Conventional: 1.75 million credits. Nuclear: 28 million credits.

Weapon Systems:

  1. IH-280-LW 30 mm Ramjet Chain Gun: Controlled by the gunner and has the ability to rotate from side to side up to 120 degrees. As well, can angle upward up to fifteen degrees and can depress down by forty-five degrees. Lighter weight version of the cannon carried in the Iron Eagle attack helicopter. The 30 mm cannon fires heavy ramjet rounds with armor piercing warheads which inflict as much damage as most heavy rail guns. The ramjet rounds inflict great damage and can quicky punch through the front armor of a tank or the main armor of a giant robot. Some crews add a light pulse laser with the ramjet weapon to deal with targets which the 30 mm cannon is considered overkill.
    Maximum Effective Range: 6,000 feet (1,830 meters).
    Mega Damage: 2D6x10 for a burst of 20 rounds, 3D6 for each round.
    Rate of Fire: Equal to the gunner's hand to hand attacks; each burst counts as one melee action.
    Payload: 1200 round drum magazine (60 bursts.)
  2. Medium-Range Missile Launchers (2): Medium range missile launcher are mounted outside of the mini-missile launchers. Launchers are used for a variety of purposes with the ability to hit both ground and air targets. Much longer range than either the chain gun or the mini-missile launchers, the weapon is primarily controlled by the gunner. Plasma and armor piercing missiles are commonly carried.
    Maximum Effective Range: Varies with missile types, medium range missiles only (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Mega Damage: Varies with missile types, medium range missiles only (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Rate of Fire: Can fire missiles one at a time or in volleys of two (2), or four (4) missiles.
    Payload: 8 medium range missiles, 4 medium range missiles in each launcher.
  3. Mini-Missile Launchers (2): A medium sized mini-missile launcher is mounted on the sides of the helicopter. This weapon is mostly used against enemy aircraft, missile volleys, and other aerial opponents, or on strafing runs against troops and other ground targets. Like the 30 mm cannon, weapon is controlled by the gunner normally.
    Maximum Effective Range: Varies with missile types, mini-missiles only (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Mega-Damage: Varies with mini-missile types (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Rate of Fire: Equal to the total number of hand to hand attacks per melee. The missiles can be fired one at a time, or in volleys of two, four, or eight.
    Payload: 32 total; 16 mini-missiles in each launcher.

Special Equipment:
The helicopter has all the standard features of a standard aircraft (same as standard robot minus loudspeaker and microphone) plus these special features listed:

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Writeup by Kitsune (E-Mail Kitsune).

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