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Grumman XF11F-2 Super Tiger

shyab

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Excellent. Shame the French Aeronavale couldn't get their hands on this lovely aircraft. Of course had the Jean Bart battleship been turned into a carrier by 1944 or 1946 things might have been different.
Instead by Suez France was stuck with
- Lafayette: fast enough for jets at 30 kt, but at 195 m long, too short for them.
- Arromanches was the exact opposite: long enough at 220 m, but too slow at 24 kt !
Only the Clems from 1960 were good enough.
The Jean Bart even compromised by its battleship narrow hull would have been both long enough and fast enough, not too far from a Clemenceau in overall capability.

Now you are saying that 98L would been as lightly loaded as a Skyhawk. An aircraft that flew out of old and small and cramped carriers such as 25 de Mayo, HMAS Sidney and Melbourne, and some others. Maybe - maybe - it would have been feasible to land that bird on Lafayette or Arromanches.
HMAS Sydney never operated skyhawks it was never equipped with an angled flight deck
 

Arjen

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Much transfer of knowledge was in the open: Datasaab cooperating with Honeywell on avionics, Volvo developing its RM8 from the P&W JT8D. Datasaab (licensee) and Singer-Kearfott (licenser) on the JA37's later CD107 flight computer. Under the table transfer of knowledge - possible, though nothing that I know of. Ericsson may have received some assistance in developing Viggen's radar, but they had been in the radar development business earlier for Lansen and Draken.
 

Stargeneral410

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Grumman XF11F-2 Super Tiger


I was reading about the Japanese Air Self Defense Force (JASDF) the other day.
One of the things I found interesting was the fact that when looking to modernise its fighter interceptor force in the late 1950,s / early 1960’s to replace its F-86 Sabre fighters. One of the designs it evaluated and came that close to putting into production was the Grumman F11F-2 (later changed to F11F-1F) Super Tiger light weight fighter.
The article stated that the Japanese had literally signed the licensed production contract with Grumman, when like many things military and business, at the eleventh hour the Japanese did a back flip and instead chose the Lockheed F-104 Starfighter in November1960.
I have not been able to find much on the Super Tiger design, apart from it being powered by a General Electric J79 turbojet engine and because of this being somewhat heavier in weight and supersonic.
Does anyone have any specification / technical data, pictures and a 3-view drawing of the F11F-2 / F11F-1F Super Tiger design?

P.S. I also believe that the Luftwaffe also evaluated the Super Tiger, but like Japan chose the F-104 Starfighter instead.
I wonder if the high accident and mortality rate of Luftwaffe F-104’s and their pilots would have been very different had they chosen the Super Tiger over the Starfighter??
The main reason that the Starfighter gained its infamous name ‘The Widow Maker’

Regards
Pioneer
Can someone explain me the benefit and purpose of the placement of missiles on the upper area of the airframe? It did not seem to be safer than flying a F-104? The super tiger pilot would be in danger if something went wrong which triggered the explosion of the missile behind him.
 

aim9xray

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Aerodynamics. The "top of fuselage" fairing coincidentally and and exactly offset the drag increment added by carriage of the two missiles. he same was not true for underwing carriage of the missiles which increased the overall drag count (decreasing Vmax and/or range).
 

Archibald

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This excellent reading show how close the Super Tiger come from beating the CF-104 back in 1959 for the RCAF.
(page 253 of the pdf)

-------

As a matter of fact, one can hate Diefenbaker or Hellyer for good reasons, but the RCAF and the powers that be behind it faced really impossible, untractable odds between 1958 and 1968.
The BOMARC, CF-104 and CF-5 deals all were poisoned chalices, one way or another.
And the CF-101 while it did the job well for the next two decades was loathed because of the Arrow trauma.

One is left wondering wether a Super Tiger with Sparrow III (for Canada air defense) and nuclear / conventional bombs (for NATO, Europe, 1st air division there) could have done the job of all these aircraft - and missiles.

Imagine: one aircraft to replace, first, the CF-100 / Sabre / CF-105 trio, and then, next generation: BOMARC, CF-101, CF-104 and CF-5 !

Compared to all of them, it fits except perhaps for the CF-101: obviously it lacks a) range b) two engines and c) two crews (although the later point could be corrected)
Joe Baugher mentions a normal range of 1136 miles.
F-101B is given a normal range of 1520 miles and maximum range 1930 miles. That's... a LOT more.
 

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SSgtC

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This excellent reading show how close the Super Tiger come from beating the CF-104 back in 1959 for the RCAF.
(page 253 of the pdf)

-------

As a matter of fact, one can hate Diefenbaker or Hellyer for good reasons, but the RCAF and the powers that be behind it faced really impossible, untractable odds between 1958 and 1968.
The BOMARC, CF-104 and CF-5 deals all were poisoned chalices, one way or another.
And the CF-101 while it did the job well for the next two decades was loathed because of the Arrow trauma.

One is left wondering wether a Super Tiger with Sparrow III (for Canada air defense) and nuclear / conventional bombs (for NATO, Europe, 1st air division there) could have done the job of all these aircraft - and missiles.

Imagine: one aircraft to replace, first, the CF-100 / Sabre / CF-105 trio, and then, next generation: BOMARC, CF-101, CF-104 and CF-5 !

Compared to all of them, it fits except perhaps for the CF-101: obviously it lacks a) range b) two engines and c) two crews (although the later point could be corrected)
Joe Baugher mentions a normal range of 1136 miles.
F-101B is given a normal range of 1520 miles and maximum range 1930 miles. That's... a LOT more.
Yeah, I love the Super Tiger and the more I've read about it, the more I've realized what a huge missed opportunity it was. I think the problem was, it had really good performance that was a little better than its contemporaries like the F-104 and it was faster than the F-8, but it wasn't so much better that it could be justified over other fighters. It had two main things working against it. First, it was an orphan. The US didn't want it because they had much better options and the bigger carriers needed to fly them. And second, the bribes being thrown around by Lockheed.

I can think of three ways it could have been a bigger seller. First, have Grumman make some changes to increase its performance from very good to great. Then it would be head and shoulders above planes like the Starfighter and Mirage III, making it impossible for other countries to ignore.

Second, have the Navy buy some to operate off of the SCB-27A Essex class ASW carriers. They would give them a viable fighter screen and drive down procurement costs and maintenance costs for third party operators, making the Super Tiger much more attractive to them (cost was specifically cited by Switzerland when they ordered their Mirage III fleet, despite the Super Tiger having slightly better performance).

Third, have Lockheed's bribes come to light much earlier. That almost certainly gets the Super Tiger into service with Japan and Germany. And that could drive down costs enough that other air forces buy it as well.
 
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Archibald

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Well they had the Crusader, Crusader III and Phantom. Three top notch aircraft. And on top of the Super Tiger, was the Skylancer !

It recently dawned on me that

- the Super Tiger, development of the Tiger, was only allowed to happen as a J79 mach 2 testbed for the Phantom and Vigilante

- the Skylancer, development of the Skyray, was only allowed to happen as "the Sparrow II option" along the "Sparrow III option" which was the last batch of F3H-2 Demons.

Both aircraft only interim types for the full-blown Sparrow III all-weather fighter(s): Crusader III versus Phantom.

So in a sense, two key technologies of the Phantom (J79 & Sparrow III) were tested on interim types (Super Tiger & last Demons) and behind them was yet another interim / insurance - the Skylancer.

Introduction of the AIM-7 Sparrow in the Navy was a complicated affair.

Sparrow I interceptors: F7U Cutlass, F3H Demons - beam-riding was shit
Sparrow II interceptor: F5D Skylancer - ARH was top, but never worked
Sparrow III interceptor: F3H-2 Demon - SARH - less practical, but workable.

Definite Sparrow III interceptor: Crusader III versus Phantom

The heart-breaking result of this was that three formidable flying machines were left behind: Skylancer, Super Tiger, and Crusader III.

An embarassment of riches, really. To think the RN was struggling with the Sea Vixen and never got a British mach 2 or supersonic naval fighter...
 
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Grey Havoc

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No, they straight out had better options. They had the Phantom and the Super Crusader both being developed and both aircraft could humiliate the Super Tiger in a head to head competition.
Both of those were still in early development though, with neither having even flown until May 1958, by which time the Super Tiger had already been flying and undergoing refinement for two years.

EDIT: @Archibald, the Skylancer was already a non-runner mainly because of procurement politics.
 
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SSgtC

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No, they straight out had better options. They had the Phantom and the Super Crusader both being developed and both aircraft could humiliate the Super Tiger in a head to head competition.
Both of those were still in early development though, with neither having even flown until May 1958, by which time the Super Tiger had already been flying and undergoing refinement for two years.

EDIT: @Archibald, the Skylancer was already a non-runner mainly because of procurement politics.
And the paper specs of the two fighters alone were more than enough to make the Navy salivate over them. Then there's the fact that the Navy was quite simply awash in "interim" types. Their VF squadrons were flying F2H Banshees, F3H Demons, FJ-1, 2, 3 and 4 Furys, F9F Cougars and Panthers and F11F Tigers. They were desperate to simplify and standardize their carrier air groups. They did not want yet another interim type.
 

Archibald

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No, they straight out had better options. They had the Phantom and the Super Crusader both being developed and both aircraft could humiliate the Super Tiger in a head to head competition.
Both of those were still in early development though, with neither having even flown until May 1958, by which time the Super Tiger had already been flying and undergoing refinement for two years.

EDIT: @Archibald, the Skylancer was already a non-runner mainly because of procurement politics.
And the paper specs of the two fighters alone were more than enough to make the Navy salivate over them. Then there's the fact that the Navy was quite simply awash in "interim" types. Their VF squadrons were flying F2H Banshees, F3H Demons, FJ-1, 2, 3 and 4 Furys, F9F Cougars and Panthers and F11F Tigers. They were desperate to simplify and standardize their carrier air groups. They did not want yet another interim type.

They still had Panters as trainers, followed by Cougars, three generations of Fury, followed by all the interim "Sparrow types" I mentionned plus the interim supersonic (Skyray, Tiger) and the failed Cutlass and the "true supersonic" Crusader (all of them with Sidewinders) and Skylancer and Super Tiger and Crusader III and Phantom and fuck I forgot the Demon
Whew !
 

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And the paper specs of the two fighters alone were more than enough to make the Navy salivate over them.
One problem though was that the specs kept changing, especially in the case of the Phantom, leading to increased costs and schedule slippage.
That was because the Navy requirement kept changing. The original spec was for a pure fleet defense/air superiority fighter. That morphed into a multirole aircraft that was just as capable a bomber as it was a fighter.
 

Archibald

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In an ideal world they would have had both Crusader III and Phantom. I grew up with F-16 versus F-18 and other competitions and first time i heard the Phantom competitor was Crusader III, I wondered how could they compete with each other, being so different - night and day, really. I thought the Crusader was the main competitor and then the Phantom had come out of nowhere and screwed it - not even close. There were really developed in parallel and flew side by side for the same requirement.

With hindsight, it is a bit as if in 1976 the F-16 had a fly off with the F-15 with only one retained. Same for F-35 vs F-22.
 

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In an ideal world they would have had both Crusader III and Phantom. I grew up with F-16 versus F-18 and other competitions and first time i heard the Phantom competitor was Crusader III, I wondered how could they compete with each other, being so different - night and day, really. I thought the Crusader was the main competitor and then the Phantom had come out of nowhere and screwed it - not even close. There were really developed in parallel and flew side by side for the same requirement.

With hindsight, it is a bit as if in 1976 the F-16 had a fly off with the F-15 with only one retained. Same for F-35 vs F-22.
They were also designed to evaluate the J75 and J79 head to head. The Crusader III's troubling tendency to go into compressor stalls at high mach numbers certainly didn't help it
 

isayyo2

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In an ideal world they would have had both Crusader III and Phantom. I grew up with F-16 versus F-18 and other competitions and first time i heard the Phantom competitor was Crusader III, I wondered how could they compete with each other, being so different - night and day, really. I thought the Crusader was the main competitor and then the Phantom had come out of nowhere and screwed it - not even close. There were really developed in parallel and flew side by side for the same requirement.

With hindsight, it is a bit as if in 1976 the F-16 had a fly off with the F-15 with only one retained. Same for F-35 vs F-22.
Take the High-Low route with Phantoms and Super Tigers. The Crusader III was very neat, but the pilot work load would have been astronomical; the two crew route is the way to go.
 

Grey Havoc

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That morphed into a multirole aircraft that was just as capable a bomber as it was a fighter.
It had some important shortfalls though, not least the lack of an internal gun on most models thanks to the 'we have missiles, we don't guns' & 'there will be no more dogfights' mentality / fallacy that overtook the USN and others during the late 1950s (originally the Phantom and Crusader were to meant compliment one another). And a lot of that evolution you mention was down to shorehorning it into roles it was never intended for which caused its own share of costly problems and failures.
 

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I also realized that one of the Sparrow II advantages, vis-a-vis Sparrow III was... it didn't needed a RIO !

Sparrow II: single-pilot fire, and forget it.

Sparrow III: pilot fire, then keep the aircraft pointed toward the target. Meanwhile the RIO in the back struggles with its scopes and radar, praying for that bloody unreliable missile to work, for once... Vietnam told us: 1 chance out of 10, average.

So in a sense, Skylancer could afford to be a single-seater when Crusader III... could not. Except Sparrow II did not really worked, so Skylancer supposed advantage was moot.

Somewhat bizarely, Demon was single-seater, too, yet it had Sparrow III.
When you think about it, that was kind of unfair to the Crusader III !

Or maybe Demons pilots said "Sparrow III really needs a RIO to handle it. Oh, really. The workload is killing us."

Phantom just did not cared. It was two-seater from the start.

I don't want to imagine Cutlass or early Demon workload with the beam-riding Sparrow I... as if surviving the Cutlass apetite for killing its pilot, wasn't complicated enough, they added Sparrow 1 to that thing.
Why Sparrow I never made it into the Skyray instead, is beyond me.
 
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SSgtC

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Or maybe Demons pilots said "Sparrow III really needs a RIO to handle it. Oh, really. The workload is killing us."
Actually, they said just the opposite. Naval Aviators swore they could do the job just fine without a guy in the back. Almost universally, the pilots wanted the Crusader III and had a very poor opinion of the Phantom during the fly off, seeing it as being too big and heavy for the intended job and not nearly maneuverable enough (seriously though, the Crusader III could fly literal rings around the Phantom II, could out climb it, had a higher ceiling, longer range and was significantly faster (the Phantom maxed out at 1,302 knots at 45,000' clean per the F-4B SAC sheet, while the Crusader III had a demonstrated top speed of almost 1,600 knots).
 

Pioneer

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And the paper specs of the two fighters alone were more than enough to make the Navy salivate over them.
One problem though was that the specs kept changing, especially in the case of the Phantom, leading to increased costs and schedule slippage.
Sadly, as has been the case with many U.S. military programs - be it ship, aircraft, armoured vehicle.....

Regards
Pioneer
 

isayyo2

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Or maybe Demons pilots said "Sparrow III really needs a RIO to handle it. Oh, really. The workload is killing us."
Actually, they said just the opposite. Naval Aviators swore they could do the job just fine without a guy in the back. Almost universally, the pilots wanted the Crusader III and had a very poor opinion of the Phantom during the fly off, seeing it as being too big and heavy for the intended job and not nearly maneuverable enough (seriously though, the Crusader III could fly literal rings around the Phantom II, could out climb it, had a higher ceiling, longer range and was significantly faster (the Phantom maxed out at 1,302 knots at 45,000' clean per the F-4B SAC sheet, while the Crusader III had a demonstrated top speed of almost 1,600 knots).
Wasn't there also a culture issue with different squadrons converting over to Phantoms? Some VFs were hardcore gunfighters and others from Skynight VF(AW)s were used to the multi-crew fleet defense missions?
 

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Or maybe Demons pilots said "Sparrow III really needs a RIO to handle it. Oh, really. The workload is killing us."
Actually, they said just the opposite. Naval Aviators swore they could do the job just fine without a guy in the back. Almost universally, the pilots wanted the Crusader III and had a very poor opinion of the Phantom during the fly off, seeing it as being too big and heavy for the intended job and not nearly maneuverable enough (seriously though, the Crusader III could fly literal rings around the Phantom II, could out climb it, had a higher ceiling, longer range and was significantly faster (the Phantom maxed out at 1,302 knots at 45,000' clean per the F-4B SAC sheet, while the Crusader III had a demonstrated top speed of almost 1,600 knots).
Wasn't there also a culture issue with different squadrons converting over to Phantoms? Some VFs were hardcore gunfighters and others from Skynight VF(AW)s were used to the multi-crew fleet defense missions?
To a point, yeah. There were also issues with pilots not fully appreciating just how complex the new generation of fighters was getting
 

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According to George Spangenberg there was a conference on all-weather fighters at Patuxent where a group of Navy pilots came down firmly in favour of two seats which helped feed a general conviction two seats were needed. With the avionics available and mission requirements, two radar sweeps could be the difference between success and failure so it made sense to have someone with eyes glued to the screen.

The F8U-3 test pilots might have had other opinions.
 
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