North American FJ-1 - Fury
Jets45 Histories

North American FJ-1 "Fury"

    Navy Fighter

    Engine: 1x Allison J35-A-2 turbojet making 4,000 lb of thrust
    Wing Span: 38' 2''
    Length: 34' 5''
    Height: 14' 10''
    Weight: Empty 8,843 lb / Loaded 15,600 lb
    Maximum Speed: 547 mph
    Ceiling: 32,000'
    Range: 1,500 miles
    Crew: 1
    Armament: 6x 0.50'' machine guns in nose
The XFJ-1 marked the entry of The North American company into the field of jet-propelled military aircraft. Designed work started in mid 1944 on NA-134 to a US Navy specification for a carrier-based jet powered fighter. At first three prototypes (XFJ-1) were ordered by the US Navy,with construction starting on the prototype right away, soon after a 100 production aircraft (FJ-1) were ordered in May 1945. It was hoped by the Navy that the FJ-1 "Fury" would be ready for the invasion of Japan planed for May 1946. But with the defeat of Japan in August 1945, the Navy cut the order to just 30 aircraft. The first XFJ-1(39053) had it's first flight on the 27/11/1946, with Wallace Lien as the pilot.

A FJ-1 "Fury" in later life 1953

The 30 FJ-1's were delivered from October 1947 to April 1948 entered service with the only squadron to use them VF-5A. All in all the pilots of VF-5A were happy with there new "Fury", but performance was poor when the aircraft was fully loaded,there were also problems with the wing tip tanks, which were never overcome. None the less the FJ-1 did out perform the Lockheed P-80 to win the Bendix Trophy in 1948.

VF-5A became VF-51 and operated the "Fury" until 1949 when it was replaced by the Grumman F9F-2 "Panther", the FJ-1's being phased out to be used in the US Navy reserve were they served as transition as trainers, before pilots moved on to the McDonnell F2H "Banshee" or the Grumman F9F-2 "Panther".

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