Hawker Sea Fury FB-11 Fighter Plane
The Hawker Fury was designed in 1942 by Hawker's chief designer, Sidney Camm the designer of the Hawker Hurricane Battle of Britain fighter, to meet Air Ministry specification F.6/42 which had been produced in response to the evaluation of a captured German Focke-Wulf FW 190. Sidney Camm based his design on the existing Hawker Tempest II aircraft which it was intended to replace, reducing both it's weight and utilising the more powerful 2,480-hp Bristol Centaurus XII 18-cylinder two-row radial engine.
By the time the prototype first flew on the 1st of September 1944 contracts had already been awarded to build 200 Hawker Furies for the RAF and an additional 200 aircraft modified for Aircraft Carrier operation for the Royal Navy's Fleet Air Arm under specification N.7/43 and to be named the Hawker Sea Fury, initial design conversion being undertaken by Wolverhampton based Boulton-Paul Aircraft Ltd.
At the end of WW2 no aircraft had been produced and the contract for the 200 Hawker Furies for the RAF was cancelled, the contract for 200 Hawker Sea Furies was reduced to 100 which still allowed development to be continued, the first flight of the Hawker Sea Fury complete with folding wings and arrester hook taking place on the 12th of October 1947. The first fifty Hawker Sea Furies were completed in May 1948 as MkX interceptors, and the first Sea Fury to become operational with the Royal Navy's Fleet Air Arm was the Hawker Sea Fury FB.Mk 11 Fighter Bomber of which a total of 615 were produced.
Hawker Sea Fury FB11 was the Royal Navy's last piston-engined fighter and also served with the Military Forces of numerous other countries including Australia, Burma, Canada, Cuba, Egypt, Iraq, Netherlands and Pakistan. Royal Navy Hawker Sea Fury FB11's were operational at the beginning of the Korean war where they were successful in the carrier launched ground attack role and also proved superior to the Russian built MiG 15's, a Hawker Sea Fury F2B flown by Lt P Carmichael of of 802 squadron flying off the carrier HMS Ocean engaging and shooting down a Korean MiG 15 on the 9th of August 1952, the first time a piston-engine fighter had ever shot down a MiG 15 jet fighter!
Hawker Sea Fury FB11 Armament:
- Four wing mounted 20 mm Hispano Mk V cannon
- Twelve 3-inch 60 lb unguided rocket projectiles (or)
- Two 2,000 lb bombs
Hawker Sea Fury FB11 Specifications:
- Crew: Pilot only
- Engine: Single 2,480-hp (1,850kW) Bristol Centaurus XVIIC, 18-cylinder radial piston engine
- Maximum weight: 12,500 lbs.
- Wing Span: 38 ft. 4.75 in.
- Length: 34 ft. 8 in.
- Height: 16 ft. 1 in.
- Maximum Speed: 460 mph.
- Service Ceiling: 35,800 ft.
- Maximum Range: 700 miles
At the end of production a total of 860 Sea Furies had been produced including the early Mk X interceptors and Sixty T.Mk 20 twin-seat trainers, most however were the FB11 Fighter Bomber version. The Royal Navy Hawker Sea Fury FB11's were gradually replaced from 1953 with the Sea Hawk jet fighter.
Most the remaining Hawker Sea Furies still in air-worthy condition today are in the hands of Pylon Racers, they are highly sought after as one of the fastest piston engine fighter aircraft ever produced. Well known Sea Furies recently seen at the Reno Air Races in the unlimited/warbird category include:
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