CURTISS ALDRICH COLLECTION
No. 9873. McDonnell 58 F3H-2N Demon (133594) US Navy
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McDonnell 58 F3H-2N Demon

05/31/2010. Remarks by Johan Visschedijk: "The first swept-wing single-seat fighter to fly designed from the outset for shipboard operation, the Demon was conceived as a day fighter, two prototypes being ordered under the designation XF3H-1 on September 30, 1949. Designed under the leadership of Richard Deagen, the first of these flew on August 7, 1951 with a Westinghouse XJ40-WE-6 engine rated at 6,500 lb (2,948 kg) s.t dry and 9,200 lb (4,173 kg) s.t with afterburning.

In the meantime, the requirement had been revised to call for limited all-weather capability, production being initiated as the F3H-1N before commencement of prototype trials. The first F3H-1N was flown on December 24, 1953 with a J40-WE-8 engine rated at 7,500 lb (3,402 kg) dry and 10,500 lb (4,763 kg) s.t with afterburning, and carrying an armament of four 0.787 in (20 mm) cannon. Production was terminated after completion of 58 aircraft, the F3H-1N never entering US Navy service.

The 32nd and 34th F3H-1N airframes were completed with the Allison J71-A-2 turbojet as F3H-2Ns, this power plant being rated at 9,500 lb (4,308 kg) s.t dry and 14,250 lb (6,462 kg) s.t with afterburning. The first of these flew on April 23, 1955, 140 series aircraft subsequently being built and armament being augmented by four short-range AIM-9 Sidewinder AAMs.

Eighty F3H-2Ms were produced in parallel, these having provision for four medium-range AAM-N-2 Sparrow I AAMs. These models were to be redesignated as F-3C and MF-3B respectively in September 1962.

They were followed by 239 F3H-2s (F-3Bs) optimized as strike fighters and capable of carrying up to 6,000 lb (2,722 kg) of ordnance externally, including the Sparrow III and Sidewinder IA AAMs. The Demon was phased out of US Navy first-line service in September 1964."

Created May 31, 2010