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Naval Fighters 16 - Vought F-8 Crusader, Part 1

Naval Fighters 16 - Vought F-8 Crusader, Part 1

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Plltlrl'
C ) N I ~
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) ) ) ~ ' T ) ~ I
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EDITOR'SNOTE
NTRODUCTION
Anyonehavingphotosorother
information
on
this
aircraft
or
other
50's
era
navalaircraft,
may
submit
themfor
possible
in
elusionin
future
issues.
Any
materialsubmitted
will
become
the
p r o p ~ r t y
of
NAVAL
FIGHTERS
unless
prior
arrangement
is
made.
Individ
ualsare
responsible
for
securityclearance
ofany
materialbeforesubmission
ISBN0-942612-16-7
S
Ginter,1754Warfield
Cir.,
SimiValley,California
93063.
All
rights
reseruedNo
part
of
this
publication
may
bereproduced.stored
in
a
retrieval
system.or
transmitted
in
any
formby
anymeans
electronic.mechanicai
Or
otherwisewithoutthe
written
permission
of
the
publisher.
<0
19RR
SCf've
Gmter
BIBLIOGRAPHY
AviationWeekandSpaceTechnology.NewYork,NewYork:McGraw-HiliPublications.Orendal,Lou.
F-8
Crusader
in
Action.Carrollton,Texas:Squadron/SignalPublications,1973.Gunston,Bill.EarlySuoersonicFiahters
Of
Thp.
W P . ~ t
Npw
York,NewYork:(Jones,Lloyd
S.
Unia:TabBooks,IJones,Lloyd
S.U.
Books,Inc.,1977Joos,Gerhard.Pber:90,
Chance'
Miller,Jay.
Crusal.,o
sader.GranadaHills,California:SentryBooks,Inc.,Airpower:July1977.In-deptharticledealingwiththehistoryoftheSuperCrusader,andwhy
it
didn'tgointoproduction.Pace,Steve.CrusaderWithaCause.GranadaHills,California:SentryBooks,Inc.Wings1987.Nichols,JohnBlTillman,Barrett.OnYankeeStation.Annapolis,Maryland:U.S.NavalInstitute,1987.Schoeni,Arthur
L.
Crusader.CanogaPark,California:ChallengePublications,Inc.AirClassics:Nov.,Dec.,andJan.1977-78.SUllivan,Jim.F-8Crusader
in
Action.Carrollton,Texas:Squadron/SignalPublications,1985.Taylor,John
W.
R.
Jane'salltheWorld'sAircraft.London,England:variouseditionsfrom1955.Tillman,Barrett.MiGMaster,TheStoryoftheF-8Crusader.NauticalandAviationPublishingCompany,1980.
Front
Cover·
The
numberone
YF8U·2NE(YF·8E)
prototype
as
it
appeared
during
the
summer
of
1961.
This
airplane,
formerlythe
74th
production
F81E(F·8B),
BuNo
143710,
wasfirstflownatNAS
Dallasby
John
Konradon
30
June
1961.
It
was
later
modified
to
serve
astheone-of-a·kindF81T(T8A)Twosader,
which
was
lost
in1978.(Vought)
I,JIJV
I'2J
1
2
,f,
~
~ 0 1
((
PartoneintheNavalFighterseriesontheF-8Crusadercoversthedesign,developmentandtesting.Futurepartswillcoversquadronhistoryandmarkings.USNandUSMCphotosquadronswillbecoveredinparttwo,USMCfightersquadrons
in
partthreeandUSNfightersquadrons
in
partfour.The
F-8
hasbeenoneoftherareaircraftinaviationhistorytohavebeenasuccessfromthestart,voidofteethingproblems,andtoexcelatitsdesignedmissionuntilretirement.Overits
31
yearsofoperationsmanynamesandphraseshavebeenusedtodescribethisincredibleaircraft.Thebestphraseusedwasthe"LastGunfighter"orthe"Last
of
theGunfighters".ThisphrasesumsuptheF-8'sreasonforsuccess.DesignedastheNavy'slastfightertousecannon(guns)asitsprimaryweaponsystem,theF-8'sflightenvelopeandtrainingtactics
revolved
aroundonething:dogfighting.TheCrusader'sabilitytoexcellinthefighterversusfighterenvironmentwasproveninVietnamwheretheF-8emergedasthepremierU.S.dogfighterwitha6.3to1kill--":-
~
-----
""
F-8'skillratiowas.88betterthanthe
USf\1
oof5.42,and3.23betterthantheUSAF)of3.07,theCrusaderwasalsoknownasapproachedretirementanewsayingwaslmunity:"Whenyou'reoutofF-8's,you'relikeothercontemporaryfightersandtheJchastheF-15,16
&
18,theF-8'sfuel
i
carriedinternally,thuseliminatingtherformancerobbingfueltanksandpylons)turnandburn.The
F ~ 8
wastrulythelast
J
communitywasgreatlyresponsiblefor
eSldUlIsIlIllg
lOp
GunandtheFighterWeaponsSchoolthroughtheirsuccessinAirCombatManeuvering.(ACM).
CREDITS
TheauthorwishestothankthefollowingcontribibutorsespeciallyArthur
L.
Schoeni·
whoassistedwithhispricelesshistoricalCrusaderinsightandrarephotographs.AspecialthanksmustgotoJohn
W.
Konrad,whoservedastheCrusader'schieftestpilot,andwhotooktimefromhisbusyscheduletocomposetheforwordforthisbook,proofreadthemanuscript,varifyobscurefactsandaddhisowninsight.Othermosthelpfulandnotablecontributorsarelistedalphabeticallybelow:RogerBesecker,PaulBower,PeterBowers,DaveComstock,EldonCorkhill,JimCroslin,RonDowney,DickHallion,MikeHatfield,RalphJackson,ClayJansson,BillLarkins,BobLawson,LoisLovisolo,RobMack,DaveMenard,JayMiller,DickSeely,VicSeely,LarrySmalley,PeteSuthard,WilliamSwisher,GordonWiliamsandNickWilliams.
If
I
have
missedanycontributor,Iapologizefortheomission,
as
Idowishtothank
everyone
thathelpedfortheirsupport.
Special
thankstoGeneHolmberg.
Special
thanks
to
William
Swisher
for
compilationofsquadron
assignment
charts.
DEDICATION
Thisbook
is
dedicatedtoJamesJ.Gallagher.
Fl
helda.as
car
(
Co
sta
Ion
%1
mo
s u ~
qu',
fine
e d ~
can
the
pou
sad
sec
Mar
airfr
whil
lesswhOF
T
feetwas
57,e
was
ave
I
TI
thes
bra
bea
wasthe
35,5
minE
the
speE
n
Na.
Crull
durir
Mari
valu'
the'
troll
t r o u ~
servo
ratioin
th.
Fore
a
totTh
joine·
 
FOREWORD
TheCrusaderwasbornasaresult
of
adesigncompetitionheldbytheU.S.NavyBureauofAeronautics
for
asupersonicdayfighterwithadesiredspeedofMach1.2ataltitude,light
as
possibleand,ofcourse,capableofoperatingfromaircraftcarriers.ChanceVO'ughtAircraft(nowLTVAerospaceandDefenseCompany),proposedauniquedesigntotheserathersimplystatedNavyrequirements.Theairplanebeingabout55feetlong,withawingspanofsome35feet.Thewinghavinga5
%
thicknessratioanda420sweepback.Itwasshouldermountedonthefuselageandcontainedabouthalfofthefuelsupply.Atwo-positionwingwasengineeredtoprovideadequatevisionoverthenoseatlowspeedsandyethaveahighfinenessratioforhighspeedflight.Bothleadingandtrailingedgehighliftdeviceswereincorporatedandoperated
in
conjunctionwiththewingposition.TheoriginalenginewasthePratt
&
WhitneyJ57-P-11whichdeliveredabout15,000poundsthrust.Subsequentdashnumbersused
in
theCrusadergaveupto20,000poundsthrust.Theaftfuselagesectionwasbuiltoftitaniumalloyasacompromisetoweight.Manyothersystemsintheairplanewerechosentokeeptheairframeaslightaspossible.Thenetresultwas
an
airframewhich,whenfilledwith8,200poundsoffuel,weighedslightlylessthan25,200poundsattakeoff.This
was
exceptionalwhencomparedtotheU.S.AirForce'sCENTURYSERIESOFFIGHTERAIRCRAFT.TheXF8U-1producedspeedsslightlyoverM1.5at35,000feet
in
itsoriginalconfiguration.ThelastF-8model,theF-8E,wascapableofspeedsexceedingM1.9ataltitudesabove57,000feet.Thedesignedmaximumequivalentairspeedwas800knotsindicated.Thedemonstratedmaximumwasover1,000knots.TherewereninemodelsoftheCrusaderproduced.Allofthesedesignsweresimilar.TheF8U-3Crusader
III
wasabigbrothertotheF8U-1CrusaderIandF8U-2Crusader
II,
bearingasimilarappearancetothecasualobserver,but
it
wasquiteadifferentairplane.TheDash
III
waspoweredbythePratt
&
WhitneyJ75turbojetengineandweighedabout35,500poundsattakeoff.Itsfullpotentialwasneverdeterminedduetoafore-shortenedflighttestprogram.However,theCrusader
III
didachievealtitudesabove70,000feetandspeedsaboveMach2.3inOctoberof1958.ThefirstproductionCrusaderaircraftweredeliveredtotheNavyjust18monthsafterthepremierflight
in
Marchof1955.CrusaderfightersparticipatedinallmajorcarrieroperationsduringtheirtenurewiththefleetandwerethebackboneofMarineCorpsfighteraviation
for
sixyears.RF-8Asobtainedvaluablephotographsofthemissilebuild-upinCuba,duringthe1962"CubanMissileCrisis."Carrier-based
F-8'S
patrolledoffthecoastofLebanonin1958togivesupporttothattroublednation.TonkinGulfcarrier-basedF-8'sandRF-8'sservedthroughouttheVietnamWar.F-8fightersearnedakillratioof6to
1,
accounting
for
18MiGfighters.TheCrusader,intheformoftheFrenchNavyF-8EandthePhilippineAirForceF-8P,areprojectedtoservethroughtheyear1988,foratotallifespanofmorethan33years.
John
W.
Konrad
TheaboveforewordwasprovidedbyJohn
W.
Konrad.HejoinedChanceVoughtAircraftin1953afterleavingtheU.S.
F-8
CRUSADER
JohnKonradsitsinthe
cockpit
of
the
XF8U-1
prior
to
itshistoric
firstflighton
3-25-55,when
Konrad
and
theCrusaderbroke
the
sound
barrier.(SchoeniviaAAHS)John
Konradposeswith
aF8U-1
in
1955.(Vought)
2

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