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The experimental X-15 built by North American Aviation was an astonishing craft. As both an aircraft and a space plane, it set speed and altitude records at the edge of outer space in the 1960s. Such was its performance envelope that some pilots could also hold claim to being astronauts. Even today, the hypersonic X-15 holds the record for the fastest ever manned rocket-powered aircraft with a speed of Mach 6.32 (a staggering 7,274km/h). It was powered by either two XLR11 or one XLR99 jet engines made by Reaction Motors Inc. To begin its flights, a NASA B-52 would carry the experimental craft aloft before releasing it at an altitude of approximately 14km. Three X-15 aircraft were manufactured and test-flown 199 times, thus producing invaluable data that would help future aircraft and space programs.
The kit offers not one but two scorching models of this record-breaking aircraft. The kit captures perfectly the cylindrical form of the X-15 with its thick dorsal and ventral stabilizers thanks to a precisely molded one-piece fuselage. Detail such as the liquid-fuel rocket engine is fully represented. An option with this 1+1 set is showing the retractable landing gear (consisting of a nose wheel and two rear skis) in either flight or landing configuration. The model of the prototypical X-15 includes the correct US Air Force (USAF) markings. With two complete aircraft in the box, this set will send modelers soaring into the stratosphere of delight!
- Newly tooled one-piece cylindrical fuselage
- Newly produced X-15 w/wedge-shaped vertical tail
- Airspeed head produced for pilot's instrumentation
- Fuselage possesses metal-skinned appearance
- Instrument panel authentically detailed
- Dorsal wedge-fin stabilizeer can adjust to different positions
- Lower fin can be assembled in folded or extended position for landing
- XLR11 rocket engine produced w/astonishing detail
- Accurately defined transparent canopy
- Landing skids can be assembled in folded or extended position
- Detailed nose-wheel carriage can be assembled in either flying or landing modes
- Undercarriage available for taxiing configuration