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There is a significant battle in both The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi that require heavy bombardment on an enemy target.

In The Force Awakens it is the attack on Star Killer base, and in The Last Jedi it is the attack on the Dreadnought-class Star Destroyer.

Both attacks are eventually successful, but one thing I noticed was in both assaults the fighters sent did not seem to have the right type of vehicle to effectively take on their target. The attack on Star Killer base used primarily X-wing fighters whose firepower did not seem heavy enough to penetrate the oscillator, while the MG-100s seemed to be too slow/not maneuverable enough for the attack on the dreadnought.

So my first thought was, why not Y-wings? They had been used to great extent (mostly1) sucessfully during the battles of Scarif, Yavin IV, and Endor. They are described as an "effective marriage between speed and firepower" which would have made more powerful than the X-wing and faster than the MG-100. It seems like the perfect fight!

So what happened? Was the manufacturer shut down, were other ships upgraded to render the Y-wing ineffective, was it an out-of-universe reason....

Where have all the Y-wings gone?2

1 - Yes, I know the Y-wing did not make the killing blows on either Death Star, but they still were the first choice.

2 - To read to this tune

  • 6
    Now you have me humming "Where Have All the Flowers Gone"... – FuzzyBoots Dec 19 '17 at 20:14
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    @FuzzyBoots - glad to know I'm not the only one... – Helbent IV Dec 19 '17 at 20:16
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    @FuzzyBoots I've got "I Need A Hero" "Where have all the Y-Wings gooone, where are all the bombs" – CBredlow Dec 19 '17 at 20:39
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    @emerssso - Sure, because the Rebellion can afford to be picky ;-) – Valorum Dec 19 '17 at 20:47
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    According to wookiepedia, the Y-wing series 4 bombers were considered military material and were in use by the new republic by the time of TFA. my guess is the whole y-wing fleet blew up at hosnian and the resistance couldn't purchase new ones in time, in the end, we must remember the resistance had only 6 MG100's and about a dozen X and A wings. – CptEric Dec 20 '17 at 14:03
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The Y-Wing was an old and essentially obsolete design. The first Rebels episode of the third season, "Steps Into Shadow" set in 2 BBY, involved stealing Y-Wings that were in the process of being scrapped, and Hera considered them old then. The new trilogy is set 36 years after that.

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    But new X-wings designs were made, so much that they are not considered obsolete. Why does the same not ring true with Y-wings? The link on Wookiepedia says that the Y-wings were being scrapped because the Empire wasn't using snub-fighters with hyper-drives. The manufacturer then sold the Y-wings to planetary defense groups. The actual ships might have been old, but why were new ones not being produced (like the X-wing)? – Skooba Dec 19 '17 at 21:35
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    Y-Wings were used in the Clone Wars, so by the time of the Rebels episode were at least a 20 year old design, while the X-Wings were new (their first canonical timeline appearance in 1 BBY, again in Rebels). Right now there's no indications how long Y-Wings continued to be used after the Battle of Endor, so they may have been retired immediately, they may have lasted another 30 years and were retired just before "The Force Awakens". – Keith Morrison Dec 19 '17 at 22:58
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    For a real-world equivalent, the F-14 Tomcat was in service with the US from 1974 to 2006, 32 years. The F/A-18 entered USN service in 1984, is still in service (34 years) and has another 15 years or so planned, and that's not counting the F/A-18E/F SuperHornet (into service 1999). Just like the Tomcat and Hornet have different operational lifespans, and just as the Hornet has a new model based on it while the Tomcat didn't, B-Wings and X-Wings could have been the same. – Keith Morrison Dec 19 '17 at 23:06
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    The poor Tomcat.... forever my favorite aircraft! – Skooba Dec 20 '17 at 2:06
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The original trilogy xwings (T65 X wings) are old and outdated. The new trilogy uses T70 X wings which are newer, more effective fighters. If there is no newer model of Y wing, ordinance equipted T70s are likely more useful in those applications than outdated Y wings. The BS 17 resistance bombers also clearly held enough bombs to take out the dreadnought. I do not believe any other rebel bomber had that capacity.

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