Model Airplane News|
Vought F-8U-1 "Crusader I" and XF8U-3 "Crusader III"
Model Airplane News Cover Art for October, 1956, and December, 1958
by Jo Kotula
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The Vought XF8U-3 Crusader III was developed by Chance Vought as a successor to the successful F-8U-1 and F-8U-2 Crusader program and as a competitor to the F-4 Phantom II.
Vought XF8U-3 "Crusader III"
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In parallel with the F8U-1s and -2s, the Crusader design team was also working on a larger aircraft with even greater performance, internally designated as the V-401. Although externally similar to the Crusader and sharing with it such design elements as the variable incidence wing, the new fighter was larger and was powered by an engine generating 29,500 lb of afterburning thrust. To deal with Mach 2+ flight conditions it was fitted with large vertical ventral fins under the tail which rotated to the horizontal position for landing. To ensure sufficient performance, Vought made provisions for a supplementary liquid-fueled rocket motor with 8,000 lb of thrust in addition to the turbojet. Avionics included the AN/AWG-7 fire control computer, AN/APG-74 radar, and AN/ASQ-19 datalink. The system was expected to simultaneously track six and fire at two targets.
Due to extensive changes as compared to the F8U-1, the F8U-2 was labeled by some as the "Crusader II", and as a result, the XF8U-3 was officially labeled "Crusader III."
Here is a video of the Vought XF8U-3 "Crusader III" in action:
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