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The fast and the furyous.

North American's FJ Fury series began with the FJ-1 straight-wing jet. It evolved into the U.S. Air Force's swept-wing F-86 Sabre, which formed the basis of the Navy's FJ-2. However,the FJ-2 was heavier than the F-86 and underpowered for carrier operations. The FJ-3 kept the swept wing of its predecessor but incorporated a more powerful engine. After the Korean War, the new afterburner-equipped aircraft--the F8U Crusader and F11F Tiger--were in the development stage, and the Navy needed an interim nonafterburner day-jet fighter to ensure its operational needs would be met should the new technology fall short. The result was the FJ-4. Keeping the engine and propulsion systems of the FJ-3, the fuselage was enlarged and reshaped to incorporate more fuel space and the wings redesigned to carry fuel, providing a 50 percent improvement in range. The FJ-4's wings shared the same 35-degree sweep as its predecessors, but were more tapered and had smaller thickness ratio. With its new design and an engine that produce 7,700 pounds of thrust, the transonic Fury Four was the Navy's last, and best, nonafterburner jet fighter.

The FJ-4B attack fighter was built in greater numbers and deployed to more operational squadrons than the FJ-4. Modifications included stiffened wings with six stores stations to carry five Bullpup missiles or one tactical nuclear device, and an extra set of speed brakes on the underfuselage.

Only two examples of the final Fury model, the FJ-4F, were built, The -4Fs were notable for the added rocket motor which allowed them to reach supersonic speed at high altitude, but they remained experimental aircraft only.
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Publication:Naval Aviation News
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Sep 1, 2003
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