Talk:Vought F-8 Crusader

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Someone was after nice PD pix of the "Gator"? Try Paul Nann's site. He's very easy on use and will likely authorize PD distribution of a small image of some of his very nice stuff.

Greg Goebel /

Correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't the F-8 up to the E-mnodel have one fuselage mounted zunipod (the small blister on the left side)? And only two sidewinders, not four mounted on the fuselage?

no. the blister on the port side of the fuselage was for the refueling probe. No fuselage zuni mount. E2a2j (talk) 01:04, 16 September 2008 (UTC)

How is it if I search "F8U" I don't get a redirect here? Trekphiler 21:06, 17 December 2005 (UTC)

> as proven when several hapless Crusader pilots were ejected off catapults with the wings folded.

Were the hapless pilots ejected, or launched from the catapult? DanB 03:36, 30 January 2007 (UTC)

Design philosophy[edit]

I rewrot this:

"During the Vietnam War, the Crusader was the best American fighter for dogfighting with Vietnamese MiGs, as all other planes relied on missiles as their sole air-to-air weapons, and thus manouverability was not factored in their projects."

It's N wrong, but I added mention of the change in philosopy. Trekphiler 21:20, 17 December 2005 (UTC)

That whole statement is POV and historically flawed. The F-8 was supposed to be the last great gunfighter but most of its Vietnam kills were achieved with AIM-9s (in fact, no gun kills at all by 1968). Its kill ratio vs Navy Phantoms was only 19:13 (Donald 2002, see article for citation). - Emt147 Burninate! 08:08, 6 March 2006 (UTC)
As far as I know, the F-8 was the last fighter designed at a time when cannons were deemed as important as missiles, and not like the F-4 where cannons were ignored all together in the first versions. Bjelleklang - talk 09:11, 6 March 2006 (UTC)

That's not what the sentence says -- it says F-8 was the best dogfighter and implies it used cannons for most of its victories. Btw, using agility to win dogfights has been largely out since World War I -- most fighters from WW2 on relied on energy tactics instead. - Emt147 Burninate! 16:29, 6 March 2006 (UTC)

That's not exactly true - the reason the Russians were so effective on the eastern front was their aircraft were more agile than the Germans' at low level. Likewise, British designs tended towards being turn fighters, while American were energy fighters. The whole reason MiGs in Korea and Vietnam wound up being more deadly than expected was that they were agile and designed as gunfighters. ericg 15:11, 7 March 2006 (UTC)
In any pair of aircraft, one will always end up an angles fighter and one an energy fighter. Spitfire, agile as it may be, becomes an energy fighter against Yak-3. The boom-and-zoom tactics were preferred by the vast majority of pilots for this exact reason -- you didn't want to engage in turning if you were flying an energy aircraft and your opponent would not let you engage them if you were flying an angles fighter. Aircraft that started as angles fighters evolved into energy fighters by the end of the war due to increases in weight and engine power because an angles fighter could not survive against energy tactics. This is why P-38 could beat the Zero, why Mosquitos were so hard to intercept, and why Phantoms could score victories against Frescos and Fishbeds half their size. FWIW,
MiGs were designed as bomber interceptors, hence the 37 mm and 23 mm cannon armament (Soviets knew from their WW2 experience with the likes of Yak-9T and Yak-9K that large-caliber cannons were extremely difficult to use against fighters) and lack of boosted controls -- no one expected them to engage in high-speed high-G dogfights. - Emt147 Burninate! 03:59, 8 March 2006 (UTC)


This article is badly in need of a complete rewrite. There is no information at all on the development, very little on the variants, and what's there is largely POV. Any F-8 fans willing to take charge of it? (I'll get to it eventually if no one else wants it). - Emt147 Burninate! 08:11, 6 March 2006 (UTC)

some add the fact that the chengdu j-8 is also someimes called f-8 in export designation


I thought I heard that some people were sucked through the large intake on the front.

Chin-intake fighters are often referred to by the nickname of "sailor inhaler," doesn't mean it has any basis in actual fact. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Iceberg3k (talkcontribs) 20:15, 8 January 2007 (UTC).

--- There is a very common film where one misses the cable and the pilot ejects as it dives into the water.


Oppose: Not enough content to warrant a separate article, especially without pics and/or drawings. In addition, the usual practce is to wiat mor that 10 minutes (usually a week) after proposing a split before actually creating the article (unless its a test, in which a test page should be used. - BillCJ 19:10, 24 December 2006 (UTC).

Bill, the Crusader III is a completely different airframe by Vought's own admission. Do you mean to suggest that they should share the same article because they have the same name? —Joseph/N328KF (Talk) 20:02, 24 December 2006 (UTC)
Joseph, it's not unheard of on Wikipedia for related aircraft to share a page, espcially for a non-production off-shoot of a production design. To me, it's better to have related designs on a full page than on a stub. That said, if you have material for expanding the F8U-3 page beyond its current content, especially with a couple of good pics (with at least one color for the lead), then I'd support it. Having seen the page now, it's longer than I thought it would be.
Btw, I placed the Bell 214ST on the Bell 214 page for those exact reasons, even though they aren't the same aircraft but do share the same model number and heritage. - BillCJ 20:11, 24 December 2006 (UTC)
My point is that it's pretty much not the same aircraft. Think Hornet vs. Super Hornet. And IMHO the Crusader III article has sufficient content on its own already. —Joseph/N328KF (Talk) 21:59, 24 December 2006 (UTC)
My opposition was to the page as stood in the F-8 article. I did not beleive there was enough content to justify its own page. If only 5 Rhinos had been built, and only 3 had flown (passed over in favor of the Tomcat 21!), and the page had minimal content, I would support retaining it in the Hornet article. Even now though, a lot of Super Hornet material continures to creep into the Hornet article.
As the Crusader III article now stands, I do support leaving it there. Obviously I came upon the page in the middle of your second thoughts on having a split vote. Such are the dangers of instant editing! - BillCJ 01:31, 25 December 2006 (UTC)

Support, as it's plenty large enough to stand as its own article. There are undoubtedly some USN photos available online as well with some poking about. ericg 19:38, 24 December 2006 (UTC)

Last of the gunfighters, huh?[edit]

The F-8 Crusader is often touted as the "last of the gunfighters", even though both the F-104 and F-105 had internal guns. It's an amazing, little-known fact that the F-105 scored at least 27.5 kills in Viet Nam, 2 with the Sidewinder.


Flak and SAMs were the worst hazard, taking down 312 F-105s. North Vietnamese MiGs claimed 22 Thunderchiefs, but the Thuds more than evened the score, with the F-105 credited with the destruction of 27.5 MiGs. Interestingly, 24.5 of these kills were performed with cannon alone. This is very much the opposite of the kill records of the other major fighter types in the war, the Vought F-8 Crusader and the F-4 Phantom, in which most kills were achieved with missiles.

This record is probably as much to the credit of the M61 internal gun as to the F-105 itself. - BillCJ 03:00, 25 December 2006 (UTC)

So the F-8 had guns and missiles. The fighters we have today have guns and missiles. What makes the F-8 any more of a gunfighter than our modern aircraft? User:|]] 18:57, 7 June 2007 (UTC)

  • Response: EXCELLENT question! "what makes the [Crusader] any more of a gunfighter than our modern aircraft?" Answer: What makes it different is that the F-8 Crusader was a "gunfighter" in the missile age. (Today's aircraft) Modern jets are NOT gunfighters in the missile age...because all jets have guns & missiles on them now (today). Said another way; the Crusader was different (during it's day), living the era of missiles only; todays jets are all the same...because of lessons LEARNED during the Crusader's War (Vietnam War).

"If there had been no Vietnam War" (we're changing history here...),... F-15 Eagles, F-16 Falcons, F-22 Raptors probably wouldn't look the way they do today. Today's jet "might" be only missile guns! After all, that's the way they were designed in the 50's & 60's; if took a "Vietnam" to change it all...but we've eliminated the "VN War" in this it would change history. There would be no TOP GUN (USN) or RED FLAG (USAF) schools to teach dog-fighting VN war existed remember? And planes all have smart weapons need to "dog-fight." Thats the way the 50's were, and that's the way it would've remained...until the VN war changed it all.

  • Today's war jets are descendants of Vietnam War jets; dog-fighters; fighter bombers, and the last US aces.
  • Fighters went away from cannons for in the late 1950s and into the 1960s. They thought missiles could do it all. Dogfighting wouldn't be required and so forth. The F-4 was designed this way for example. In any event, I think the article explains it with this sentence: The F-8 Crusader was the last U.S. fighter designed with guns as its primary weapon.. -Fnlayson 19:07, 7 June 2007 (UTC)
This is a silly debate. Clearly the "last of the gunfighters" tag is hyperbole. Today is just as much the "missile age" as was the '50s, indeed more so as the missiles today really work effectively, e.g., with a couple of exceptions all of the kills scored during Desert Storm were achieved with missiles, many were BVR shots where a gun would have been less than useless. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:06, 20 March 2015 (UTC)

French missiles[edit]

I noticed that the French navy section has a link that doesn't work, and no information on the R.530 missile, but it is referenced. Here's some basic information on this missile, for those who want to know:

I) It could be fitted with one of two seeker heads-a rounded nose heat seeking head, or a pointed SARH head, matched to the aircraft's radar system.

II) It was the first generation French AAM-it armed the first mirage III's.

III) it had a rather short range(especially the IR seeker-also only locked in on very hot tail pipes)

IV) Being the first attempt, it was, well, unreliable.

But this small simple missile fathered the R.550, and every other French AAM in use today. That is no small feat! Please note that the forward fusaloge hard points could carry 2 R.530, @ R.550, or two sidewinders. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 19:36, 14 October 2007 (UTC)

Actually, no. The orginal R.530 preceded the super 530 by several years. As well, the super has no Ir homing head-and the R550 has no SARH Head. The old R.530 had both heads. In fact, as I said Earlier, the R530 fathered the super 530. 18:53, 16 October 2007 (UTC)Trainman the second
  • In any event, those are the closest articles I could find. They'd be a better place for this type info. -Fnlayson 19:04, 16 October 2007 (UTC)

Lt. Nargi's Kill[edit]

I saw on the main article that Lt. Nargi shot down a Mig-17. However every other source in exsistence states he shot down a Mig-21, and this is a fact. If you look at the history of VF-111 it will show this. I have tried to correct this through editing but it keeps changing back. I guess it doesn't matter that much but saying it was a Mig-17 is just a big lie. —Preceding unsigned comment added by HAWG64 (talkcontribs) 23:08, 11 August 2008 (UTC)

Of course it matters. The problem is that the info you are changing has a source, and you are neglecting to provide any other reliable source to prove what you say is even true. Also, vandals do not generally provied edit summaries. Unexplained changes and deletions are indistinguishable from vandalism, and will be reverted. Please remember that mind-reading does not work over the internet, and explain your edits in the edit summary box. You also removed 2 cited paragraphs on the F-86 page without any explanation. Please do not remove them again, but state your case on the F-86 talk page. Thanks. - BillCJ (talk) 23:23, 11 August 2008 (UTC)

Variants - The A-7 is NOT an F-8 variant[edit]

The stats box currently lists the A-7 Corsair II as a variant. This is simply not the case. Every source I have says the A-7 was a clean sheet design, but merely looks similar. It has different fuselage dimensions, a completely different wing planform, spar structure, and shoulder box due to the under wing stores load requirement of an attack aircraft and thus much higher wing loading than the Crusader which has no wing pylons. It is optimized for the subsonic regime vs supersonic regime; the wing is not movable as on the F-8 but instead has flaps and slats for low speed lift. It has a different engine (turbofan vs. turbojet, and no afterburner), vastly different radar, and has a modern hydraulic gatling gun vs 4 jam prone antiquated recoil operated guns, etc, etc, etc.

There are only 5 similarities:

1. Both are aeroplanes

2. Both are made by Vought

3. Both are jets

4. Both are single seaters (although their were later dual seat A-7 trainers)

5. Both have a chin location engine air inlet and shoulder wing layout

The first 4 similarities are meaningless. That leaves only one somewhat meaningful similarity: cosmetics. And if this is the criteria for variants, then I'll modify the F-15 page and list the Mig-29 and Su-27 as a variants.

The A-7 needs to be dropped from the variant list. Hardwarefreak (talk) 07:48, 15 September 2008 (UTC)

You state a very good point. I agree with you all the way. Jak474 (talk) 17:45, 28 November 2016 (UTC)

This is an old post, and the A-7 isn't currently listed in the variants list. - BilCat (talk) 19:58, 28 November 2016 (UTC)

Crusader III[edit]

Technically there were three aircraft designs which were originally to be designated XF8U-3.

- The V-401 which was actually built and flown as the XF8U-3 / Crusader III / Super-Crusader - The V-418 and V-419 which I know very little about except that they were to use J-58's (which by the way were not the bleed-bypass versions used on the A-12/YF-12A/SR-71/M-21), they were never built. But nonetheless they were conceptualized

AVKent882 (talk) 18:34, 18 March 2009 (UTC)


Latest submission in Philippines version, appears to be a "copy-paste" job as I have found verbatim sentences taken from other sources. I am reluctant to simply remove the edit, but it is worrisome. Am I wrong? FWiW Bzuk (talk) 13:22, 7 August 2012 (UTC).

As much of it seems to be utter rubbish (references to APG-65 and APG-73 radar - both F-18 radars which probably wouldn't fit in the F-8's nose, reference to revised main wheel tyres giving distinctive LOWER WING bulges - the undercarriage retracts into the fuselage and replaceemnt of probe and drogue refuelling with a flying boom recepticle), I don't think that copyvio is a problem. It should still be deleted as it is unreferenced, wrong, and frankly getting to the realms of Wikipedia:Complete bollocks.Nigel Ish (talk) 14:13, 7 August 2012 (UTC)
N, since then, I did a quick review of two other large text dumps in other articles and found the same thing: "word-for-word" sections from military blogs. FWiW Bzuk (talk) 14:18, 7 August 2012 (UTC).

LAU-10 Zuni Rocket pods?[edit]

The specifications say the F-8 carried Zuni rockets in "LAU-10 launchers". According to the article on the Zuni rocket, while MOST applications used the 4-rocket LAU-10 pod to fire the Zuni rocket, a single-shot launching tube was produced specifically to fit the Sidewinder stations on the F-8 Crusader Y-pylons, meaning one rocket per station, for a total of 4 single shot launchers, not 2 four-shot launchers. Perhaps that article is mistaken (it's not the best I've ever seen), but that does match the pictures I've seen, which do show four individual rockets mounted on the typical F-8 "Y-pylons"...which is not an LAU-10 launcher. It doesn't give a designation for the single shot launchers, but I believe the F-8 carried 4 single-shot launchers, not 2 four-shot launchers. Even if at some point the F-8 was adapted to carry the LAU-10, it was clearly not the only option for carrying Zunis.

Edit: Sorry; maybe there are single shot launchers as it says in the article, but I was actually thinking of the "LAU-33", which is a two-shot launcher, giving 8 rockets on 4 Y-pylon stations. Interestingly, the Zuni article on the German Wikipedia appears to have more relevant information than the article on the English Wikipedia. Go figure. It lists a number of different variants of the LAU-10 launcher and the LAU-33 launcher. Didn't see any mention of a single-shot launcher, so that might be bogus. .45Colt 13:20, 10 April 2014 (UTC)

Transcontinental record[edit]

Maj. John Glenn took off on his transcontinental record flight from LAX, not NAS Los Alamitos, according to Barrett Tillman's book "F-8 Crusader: MiG Master." (Tillman is a well-regarded popular aviation historian.) During the day before the flight, weather predictions made it look as though the takeoff would have to be transferred to Los Alamitos, and a lot of support equipment was moved to the NAS,but at the last minute, clear weather at Los Angeles made a takeoff from LAX possible. (talk) 22:11, 6 April 2015 (UTC)

Second thoughts: every other source I've found says that Glenn took off from Los Alamitos, so I have to assume Tillman was wrong. (talk) 19:24, 7 April 2015 (UTC)

Loss Rate[edit]

The article states that "in all, 1,261 Crusaders were built. By the time it was withdrawn from the fleet, 1,106 had been involved in mishaps.". It links to a source that goes on to say that "the vast majority (88 percent!) of Crusaders ever built ended up as smoking holes in the ground, splashes in the water, or fireballs hurtling across a flight deck". I find this hard to believe. Thankfully Wikipedia leaves it out, but I worry that someone will try to put it in, because it's dramatic.

Is it actually the case that (a) there were 1,106 mishaps, rather than 1,106 aircraft involved in mishaps (b) the mishaps included e.g. burst tyres, bent landing gear, fuel leaks, broken access doors, etc rather than the complete destruction of the aircraft? It seems to have had a terrible loss rate but not that terrible.

The article goes on to say that 170 were lost to all causes during the Vietnam war - presumably 1965-1972 - and although it's not clear if that only includes units deployed to Vietnam, it implies that the loss rate actually decreased during Vietnam, if the 88% figure is correct. (talk) 13:10, 3 October 2015 (UTC)

Thanks for the comment. It looks like the source this text is based on (Rubel) drew these statics from the Naval Safety Center; unfortunately, I can't seem to find the exact database the numbers were pulled from. Here's their site: [1]
There are other sources to corroborate how accident prone the F-8 was- for example, this site claims to list every ejection from an F-8: [2]. It's a very long list- into the hundreds I'm guessing. I can't tell where this site got its data from though, so I wouldn't use it for Wikipedia.
Your concern about this wording is valid...but without access to the stats Rubel based his article on, there's nothing really to go by to determine if the wording should be changed. Cheers! Skyraider1 (talk) 17:29, 3 October 2015 (UTC)
The ejection site seems to list all losses, not just ejections - it lists roughly 730 entries from 1956 to 1995, including French Crusaders. Some of the entries look erroneous (e.g. the 6th June 1967 entry for "Lt. JG T. R. Hall" seems to be a duplicate of the next two records) and some of them admit to being duplicates. That's a loss rate of almost exactly 58%, which sounds awful but includes wartime shootdowns. And of course it was an early carrier jet that was in service for forty years.
A bit of Googling throws up Civil Airworthiness Certification: Former Military High-Performance Aircraft by Miguel Vasconcelos of the Federal Aviation Administration. Of page 2-24 he writes that "in all, 1,261 Crusaders were built. By the time it was withdrawn from the fleet in 1987, 1,106 had been involved in mishaps. About 600 were destroyed, and of the total number of F-8s lost, 87 were lost in combat in Vietnam." He quotes a source pointing out that with the exception of one month, there was at least one F-8 ejection each and every month between June 1957 to May 1970. The French had 42 aircraft and lost 27. My guess therefore is that Rubel was sloppy.
Judging by this, an accident is classed as a mishap if it involves at least $10,000 worth of damage and/or five days in the sickbay. -Ashley Pomeroy (talk) 20:09, 21 October 2015 (UTC)

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