Friday, June 6, 2014

F3H Demons Being Towed to Barges

downey001downey002downey003F-3H on a bargeUntitled 1
"Facing the fact that there was no way to solve the (Westinghouse) J40 engine problems, the Navy halted production of the F3H-1N after the 58th aircraft rolled off the line....In July of 1955 the Navy reluctantly grounded all F3H-1Ns and had to face growing congressional disfavor in light of the 200 million dollars expended on the aircraft and its ill-fated engine.  Worse, the Navy had to endure the humiliation of barging F3H-1Ns from St. Louis to Memphis, where the would be towed to the Naval Air Station for maintenance training, and barging F3H-1Ns from Patuxent River down to Norfolk for the same purpose." (Excepts from The Tomcatters Association web site at: See also: History of the F-3H Demon

The first three photos are from the William Rudolph collection. Bill was a McAir employee during the 50’s and 60’s and was present when the aircraft were towed to the barges. As far as I can tell, these three have never been published! The next photo is of an F-3H-1N being loaded on a barge. (Credit unknown) The last photo is of the Demon’s starting their journey. (McDonnell Aircraft)
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