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F-86 proposed as cruise missile

XP67_Moonbat

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Last night I browsed thru Dennis R Jenkins' book on Air Force prototypes. In it there's one poor picture and a brief description about a plan to outfit some F-86's as unmanned "flying bomb" drones intended to carry a nuclear weapon 3,000 miles to Russia.

Now this is not to be confused with the QF-86 target drones for playing shoot 'em up. Thats a horse of a different color.

Anyone else here heard of this project?

Moonbat
 

Stargazer2006

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There was an FBX (Fighter Bomber Experimental) program which received the charge number NA-237. Perhaps it is the one? It could also be the NA-250, about which I know nothing.
 

XP67_Moonbat

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I went back and took some notes out of the Jenkins book. The caption says this North American project was caled the "F-86 Missile". The F-86 Missile would carry a nuclear weapon.

It would be carried by a B-36 for about 3000 mi. It would be launched at 30,000 ft and continue the final 3000 miles. From there it would make a terminal vertical dive from 49,000 feet and aproach 680 knots at 27,00ft.


The small picture shows an F-86 with an elongated fairing going aft from where the cockpit would have been to where the tail begins. At the front of the fairing is a small window of some kind, presumably for a guidance system (unspecified).

On the underside is a fairing that gives the Sabre a preganant look. I presume this was where the nuke would have been.

Other than a drawing of the Missile, the was also a graph showing the flight path for the entire mission. The NA report number was AL-1075. It is dated 29 Sept. 1950.

And that's about it.

Moonbat
 
J

joncarrfarrelly

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I'm guessing you mean this book?:


Because I can't find it in this one:
 

OM

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XP67_Moonbat said:
I went back and took some notes out of the Jenkins book. The caption says this North American project was caled the "F-86 Missile". The F-86 Missile would carry a nuclear weapon.

It would be carried by a B-36 for about 3000 mi. It would be launched at 30,000 ft and continue the final 3000 miles. From there it would make a terminal vertical dive from 49,000 feet and aproach 680 knots at 27,00ft.
...Man, I'd heard about this proposal *YEARS* ago from an Air Farce colonel friend of the family who was into X-plane histories. He didn't give much details at the time, but the way he told it the B-36 would carry two of these F-86 "flying nukes" to keep the plane balanced, and both would be released at the same time. He said he'd heard they'd conducted a few drop tests, but that was about as far as the project got.

Hadn't thought about this one in ages. Thanks for making me feel older, Moonie :'( :'( :'( :'(
 

Mark Nankivil

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It's in the photo scrapbook edition. Excellent book by the way (as is the first one).

Enjoy the Day! Mark
 

XP67_Moonbat

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Here's my hand-drawn take on the F-86 Missile. It's not the best but I tried. The written notes pretty much say what I posted earlier. Enjoy.

Moonbat
 

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XP67_Moonbat

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“B-45C Airplane Missile.”

http://up-ship.com/blog/?p=3811

A posting from Scott on his site. Could this project be related to the F-86 Missile? Who knows. They both happen to be North American products. They both date from 1950. I wouldn't be surprised.
 

Pioneer

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Makes complete sense for the American's to follow this line of thinking.
After all the Soviets did the exact same thing with utilising the already known aerodynamic property's to develop some of their first big standoff range air-to-surface missiles utilizing the MiG-15 and latter MiG-19 fighter designs!


Great and interesting topic!!!


Regards
Pioneer
 

Stargazer2006

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What we don't know is whether this was strictly an uncalled for North American Aviation proposal, or if it answered a USAF specification. The only jet such project that received a USAF designation (and even then, a temporary one) was the F-80 as the Q-8. Of course there were other unpiloted aircraft before and after, notably the BQ- series and the later QF-86 and MQM-102 that come to mind. But they were reconditioned production aircraft, not specific, cockpit-less versions designed as such from the start.
 

BSG-75

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Pioneer said:
Makes complete sense for the American's to follow this line of thinking.
After all the Soviets did the exact same thing with utilising the already known aerodynamic property's to develop some of their first big standoff range air-to-surface missiles utilizing the MiG-15 and latter MiG-19 fighter designs!
As did the British with Gnats and a Vulcan, 3 Gnats with a nuclear payload plus external fuel tanks mounted under a Vulcan B2 after Skybolt was cancelled, it never came to much but Gnats were later used in close formation with Vulcan's to simulate Soviet air launched missiles in the early 70's during exercises.
 

Stargazer2006

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Ooops! Just realized I wrote "F-86" for the Q-8 when in fact it should have read "F-80"... Sorry about the confusion! The designation was assigned temporarily to the Lockheed Shooting Star, NOT the North American Sabre. I'm going to modify my post accordingly.
 

visvirtusvoluntas

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Hi guys,
reading "F-86 Sabre - History of the Sabre and FJ Fury" by Robert F. Dorr, I found this about ROKAF (South Korea) Sabres:

"...as late as 1988 plans existed to convert surviving F-86Fs into unmanned surface-to-surface cruise missiles, similar to the Martin TM-61A Matador of the 1950s".

Anyone knows more?
 

Orionblamblam

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I don't know anythign about these late South Korean plans, but in the 1950's North American Aviation examined converting both the F-86 and B-45 into unmanned cruise missiles. The F-86 would be carried by the B-36.
 

Pioneer

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Would have made sense!
After all didn't the Soviet's successfully base its simple, but effective KS-1 Kometa (AS-1 Kennel) / S-2 Sopka (SSC-2B Samlet) series cruise missiles on the MiG-15 (or was its aerodynamics?)??
Interestingly such a F-86-based cruise missile in say, I'm assuming
the late 1950's, would have given the USAF the ability to operate it's B-50 bombers as a stand-off launch platform (aka as the Soviet's so successfully did!)
Are there any speculitive art or drawings of this proposal?

Regards
Pioneer
 

Antonio

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Art can be find here:

USAF Prototype Jet Fighters. Tony Landis and Dennis Jenkins.

http://www.amazon.com/USAF-Prototype-Jet-Fighters-Scrapbook/dp/1580071376/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1420791700&sr=8-1&keywords=USAF+Prototype+Jet+Fighters.+Tony+Landis+and+Dennis+Jenkins.

Page 30

Original source is:

National Records Center, St. Louis Collection

The F-86 cruise missile derivative looks like a cockpit-less standard F-86 with a dorsal smooth spine. (I can produce a quick profile if requested)
Another drawing shows a B-36 carrying a single missile semi-recessed in its belly.
 

Grey Havoc

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For reference:

http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,18805.0.html

http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,18813.0.html

http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,12699.0.html
 

visvirtusvoluntas

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Pioneer said:
Would have made sense!
After all didn't the Soviet's successfully base its simple, but effective KS-1 Kometa (AS-1 Kennel) / S-2 Sopka (SSC-2B Samlet) series cruise missiles on the MiG-15 (or was its aerodynamics?)??
Interestingly such a F-86-based cruise missile in say, I'm assuming
the late 1950's, would have given the USAF the ability to operate it's B-50 bombers as a stand-off launch platform (aka as the Soviet's so successfully did!)
Are there any speculitive art or drawings of this proposal?

Regards
Pioneer
This is right. But at the time the desperate need of such a weapon led to choose the simplest way to obtain it. In peacetime at late 80s...
 

XP67_Moonbat

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I'm reading Robert F. Ford's book on the Sabre and just encountered that passage on the ROKAF's wish to turn F-86F's into cruise missiles. Was gonna ask but....

Evidently Visvirtasvoluntas beat me to this a year ago. So anything come up on this idea?
 

XP67_Moonbat

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Scott, do you have the pic of that B-45 drone? The picture's link in your APR article is dead.
 
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