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American postwar aircraft

WW2 tanks

North American F-86 Sabre

In 1944, the war in Europe was close to being over. The Atlantic Wall had been breached, Russian forces were approaching German soil and the Allied forces pounded German cities every day and night.
The Germans unveiled three weapons of the future: the V-1, V-2 and the jet propelled Me 262. These weapons, had they been used properly, could have put an end to the allied air offensive. However, decisions at the top of the German general staff rendered these weapons useless.
The fact the Germans had been able to produce so advanced a fighter well before the Americans came as a profound jolt.
In Nov. 1944, North American Aviation initiated a design study for a high performance aircraft powered by a single jet engine. This design was submitted to the Army Air Force on May 8, 1945, 10 days after VE Day. The aircraft was designated the XP-86.
On Aug. 8, 1947, the first XP-86 rolled out of its hangar and made its maiden flight Oct. 1, 1947. The first production Sabre made its first flight May 20, 1948. The F-86 was the first production jet aircraft to break the sound barrier in 1948.
The F-86 was the mainstay of the allied fighter forces in Korea where it virtually drove opposing MiG-15s out of the sky. There were a total of 9,502 F-86 aircraft built. The aircraft on display here is a modified F-86D which was converted in Nov. 1956 to a F-86L with a wider wing span. A few F-86s are still flying today, most notably in South Korea. The F-86D/L was the first U.S. Air Force interceptor to have all-rocket armament, and the first all weather interceptor to carry only one man for operating the fire control system as well as flying the airplane.
This F-86 was delivered to the Air Force Aug. 15, 1955 and served with the 331st Fighter Interceptor Squadron, Air Defense Command, Webb AFB, Texas, until it was retired in June 1960.
General characteristics
Primary function Fighter, fighter/bomber (F-86H)
Contractor North American
Gear Three-point, nose type
Crew One
Wing angle 35

North American F-86 Sabre






Power plant

General Electric J-47

General Electric J-47 General Electric J-47-13 General Electric J-47-27


5,200 lb (23.13 kN)

7,650 lb (34.03 kN)

5,200 lb (23.13 kN)

5,970 lb (26.56 kN)


37 ft (11.3 m)

37 st. 1 in (11.3 m)

37 ft (11.3 m)

37 ft (11.3 m)


37 ft (11.4 m)

40 st. 4 in (12.3 m)

37 ft (11.4 m)

37 ft (11.4 m)


14 ft (4.5 m)

15 ft (4.5 m)

14 ft (4.5 m)

14 ft (4.5 m)

Takeoff weight

13,791 lb (6,256 kg)

19,975 lb (9,060 kg)

14,000 lb (6,350 kg)

17,000 lb (7,711 kg)

Max. speed

685 mph (1,102 km/h)

715 mph (1,151 km/h)

650 mph (1,046 km/h)

650 mph (1,046 km/h)


1,200 miles (1,931 km)

800 miles (1,287 km)

1,000 miles (1,610 km)

1,000 miles (1,610 km)


49,000 ft (14.9 km)

50,000 ft (15.2 km)

45,000 ft (13.7 km)

45,000 ft (13.7 km)


6xmachine gun .50 a 8x rocket (5 in) or 2000 lb (907 kg) bomb

24xrocket Mighty Mouse (2.75 in)

6x machine gun .50, 16x rocket HVAR (5 in) or 2,000 lb (907 kg) bombs

6x machine gun .50, 16x rocket HVAR (5 in) or 2,000 lb (907 kg) bombs

First flight





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Jirka Wagner


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Last updated 08.12.2017