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Posted 10/30/2009 Printable Fact Sheet
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Bell XF-83
Bell XF-83 (S/N 44-84990). (U.S. Air Force photo)
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The XF-83, like the XF-81 was an attempt to solve the limited range problem of early jets fighters. The XF-83 was essentially an improved version of the Bell P-59 modified for two J-33 turbojets and large internal fuel tanks holding up to 1,150 gallons. The first of two XF-83s ordered (S/N 44-84990 and 44-84991) first flew on Feb. 25, 1945.

The XF-83 featured a pressurized cockpit because of expected operating altitudes above 40,000 feet. The engines were mounted close to the aircraft centerline for increased safety. If one engine failed, the other wouldn't cause serious control problems due to asymmetrical thrust.

Testing showed the aircraft was too heavy and didn't offer any significant improvement over existing fighters and thus never entered production.

Type Number built/
XF-83 2 Twin-jet (J-33s) prototype

Armament: Six .50-cal. machine guns
Engines: Two Allison J-33 turbojets
Maximum speed: 525 mph
Range: 1,580 mi. (2,200 miles with external tanks)
Service ceiling: 45,000 ft.
Span: 53 ft. 0 in.
Length: 44 ft. 10 in.
Height: 14 ft. 0 in.
Weight: 24,090 lbs. maximum
Crew: One

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