Bilge Pumps Episode 26: An F-35 Deep Dive with Special Guest Steve George

By Alex Clarke

Bilge Pumps, Episode 26. This is special, this is one of those times the Bilge Pumps team just gets amazed! We cannot believe how lucky we are to have this person come on our podcast yet again! This is Stephen George, Commander, Royal Navy (ret.), an aero engineer the likes of which you will rarely get to speak in public.

Last time, Commander George came to talk about his part in the unprecedented effort which went into achieving over 80 percent availability from nine aircraft for nearly 120 days during the 1982 Falklands War. This time again it will be the F-35, myth busting, context providing, actual explanations by a real engineer whose only concept of spin is the centrifugal force variety, not the make-things-sound-pretty variety.

Beware though, this interview was the fulfilment of Jamie’s dreams, after years of only hearing full declarative sentences from those with an axe to grind against the F-35. Finally, here was an engineer, who has worked closely with the project both in and out of uniform, prepared to be candid about its mistakes, but also be full-throated in explanation of why it did what it did and what it got right.

#Bilgepumps is six months old and this is Episode 26, so in puppy training terms we have reached the point of potentially being house trained. So we may no longer boast that new car smell, in fact decidedly more of pineapple/irn bru smell with a hint of jaffa cake and the faintest whiff of cork. But we’re getting the impression it’s liked, so we’d very much like any comments, topic suggestions or ideas for artwork to be tweeted to us, the #Bilgepump crew (with #Bilgepumps), at Alex (@AC_NavalHistory), Drach (@Drachinifel), and Jamie (@Armouredcarrier). Or you can comment on our Youtube channels (listed down below).

Download Bilge Pumps Episode 26, Part 1: An F-35 Deep Dive with Special Guest Steve George

Download Bilge Pumps Episode 26, Part 2: An F-35 Deep Dive with Special Guest Steve George


1. Dr. Alex Clarke’s Youtube Channel
2. Drachinifel’s Youtube Channel
3. Jamie Seidel’s Youtube Channel

Alex Clarke is the producer of The Bilge Pumps podcast.

Contact the CIMSEC podcast team at

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