Model Airplane News
November, 1933

Model Airplane News Cover for November, 1933 by Jo Kotula Berliner-Joyce XFJ

Berliner-Joyce XFJ
Model Airplane News Cover Art for November, 1933
by Jo Kotula
Click to Enlarge

The Berliner-Joyce XFJ was a United States prototype biplane fighter aircraft that first flew in May 1930. Designed by Berliner-Joyce Aircraft for the United States Navy, its lower wing, placed below the fuselage and just two feet above the ground, apparently gave it a tendency to ground loop when landing, and it was never ordered for production.

The Berliner-Joyce P-16      The Berliner-Joyce XFJ

Berliner-Joyce P-16 and XFJ
left: P-16 right: XFJ Click to Enlarge

Berliner-Joyce,formed in 1929, had won a contract with the United States Army for the Berliner-Joyce P-16 aircraft. At the same time, they submitted a similar design to the Navy, modified to meet the differing requirements. The body was to be an all-metal monocoque, with the upper wing mounted on the top of the fuselage, and the lower wing slung on struts beneath the body.

 The Berliner-Joyce XFJ in Popular Mechanics December 1932

The Berliner-Joyce XFJ in Popular Mechanics
December, 1932
Click to Enlarge

The prototype, XFJ-1, was sent to Anacostia for testing after its initial flights, where the ground-looping habit was noted, and eventually resulted in a landing accident, necessitating return and repair. The company took the opportunity to add a Townend ring engine cowling, and upgraded the engine to 500-hp R-1340-92. This and other improvements boosted speed from 177 to 193 mph, and the Navy gave the reconstructed aircraft the designation XFJ-2. However, improved performance came at the expense of stability, and the ground loop problem persisted, and there was no interest in continuing with this design. Nevertheless, the prototype continued to be used for other tests for several years

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