Crusader Fighter Report

First Flight
Muroc Test
Record-Setting Flights
Project Bullet
Mideast Crisis
18 Years in the Fleet
Cuban Crisis
French Crusader
Top Guns
Flight to Atsugi

Southeast Asia Action
Crusader Mig Masters
Supercritical Wing
Today's Muster




Early on the morning of March 25, 1955, John W. Konrad, chief test pilot for Chance Vought Aircraft Company, climbed into the cockpit of the first XF8U-1 Crusader, taxied the airplane onto the dry lake bed of the Muroc test area at Edwards AFB, Calif., and took off. That first flight of the F-8, an historic one, lasted 52 minutes.

Konrad pushed the F-8 past Mach-1 on its maiden flight and proved to the world that the Crusader was the airplane that would take the Navy "out of the third row and put it right up front" in aerospace history.

The prototype XF8U-1 was powered by a Pratt and Whitney J57-P-11 turbojet engine, developing 9,700 pounds static thrust and 14,800 pounds with afterburner.

That original, prototype F-8 Crusader made its last flight on October 25, 1960, a cross-country mission from Dallas to Washington, D.C. where it landed at National Airport and was presented to the Smithsonian Air Museum. It's on display there today.

All information on this page is from special F-8 CRUSADER FIGHTER REPORT compiled by the Public Relations Department of LTV Aerospace Corporation in 1974.


John W. Konrad

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