Category Archives: prototype

Curtiss XP-55 Ascender

A prototype that was never really considered for a production order, Let’s look at a design meant to tackle difficult aerodynamic issues as new areas of speed and performance were dealt with at the end of the piston-engine fighter era.

Posted in Fighter, prototype, USA | Tagged , | 10 Comments

Blohm und Voss BV 141B-0

Symmetry is over-rated. Time for a look at one of aviation’s truly unique designs.

Posted in Germany, prototype, Reconnaissance | Tagged , , | 14 Comments

Grumman F4F-3S Wildcatfish

Japan may have been the only nation with a fully successful float-plane fighter, but others tried. Let’s look at a US Navy attempt.

Posted in Fighter, prototype, USA | Tagged , , | 15 Comments

Mitsubishi A6M1 Zero

Part of the first wave of great World War II fighters, the first flight of Mitsubishi’s famous Zero came on April 1, 1939. Let’s take a look at an important type that was so secret it was almost entirely unnoticed … Continue reading

Posted in Fighter, Japan, prototype | Tagged , , | 10 Comments

Beechcraft YC-43 Staggerwing

In 1932 Beechcraft introduced a new high performance, luxury executive aircraft. The Model 17 Staggerwing quickly became a pilot favorite. It was fast, powerful and modern. As War clouds gathered the type was pressed into military service from Spain to … Continue reading

Posted in Liason, prototype, USA | Tagged , , | 17 Comments

Bell XP-59A Airacomet

The end of World War Two was the dawn of the jet age.  Every major nation was working on these next generation aircraft. After the jump, a look at the United States first attempt at a jet fighter.

Posted in Fighter, prototype, USA | Tagged , , | 8 Comments

Kyushu J7W Shinden

A late war prototype, the J7W was an interesting project designed to combat American B-29 formations. After the jump, a look at where the Japanese could have gone if the war lasted a little longer.

Posted in Fighter, Hypothetical, Japan, prototype | Tagged , , | 14 Comments

Grumman XF5F-1 Skyrocket

The Grumman Skyrocket is a radical looking twin with significant pros and cons as a potential fighter.  In the years before World War II it was one of the more interesting designs considered in a rapidly expanding and modernizing fleet. … Continue reading

Posted in Fighter, prototype, USA | Tagged , , | 17 Comments