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Kitty Hawk 1/32 F5F Tiger II Fighter (New Tool) Kit

Kitty Hawk 1/32 F5F Tiger II Fighter (New Tool) Kit

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$99.99 $129.99

The F-5F was the two-seat combat trainer version of the F-5E Tiger II. Northrop had not originally planned to offer a two-seat version of the Tiger II, but after initial flight tests, it became clear that the performance of the F-5E was so much greater than that of the F-5A that a trainer version of the Tiger II would be appropriate. On May 15, 1973, the Air Force gained Congressional approval to examine Northrop's proposal for a two-seat version of the Tiger II. An entirely new two-seat forward fuselage was developed. Instead of squeezing in the second crew member by simply pushing the front cockpit further forward in the nose (as had been done in the T-38 and F-5B), the entire fuselage was lengthened by 3 feet 6 1/2 inches. The AN/APQ-159 fire control system was retained, which enabled the aircraft to be used for both training and combat duties. However, in order to fit in the radar, it was necessary to delete one (the starboard) of the 20-mm cannon and to reduce the ammunition capacity to only 140 rounds. (Since a barrel-like ram air intake projected from the starboard cannon port, some have suggested that the starboard cannon was actually fitted to the F-5F, which is untrue). 

Aside from the deletion of the second 20-mm cannon, the F-5F retained the full combat capability of the single-seat F-5E. However, only the front cockpit was fitted with the lead computing optical sight system. The provision was made for the addition of ballast weights underneath the rear fuselage forward of the jet exhaust to compensate for the extra length of the nose. Wing fences were positioned at wing mid-span.

Development of the F-5F was approved by the USAF in early 1974, with the first flight (by 73-0889) taking place at Edwards AFB on September 25, 1974, with Northrop test pilot Dick Thomas at the controls. Two F-5Fs completed flight test and qualification in early 1976. The F-5F was slightly heavier than the F-5E and had a slightly inferior takeoff performance. First deliveries began in the summer of 1976. A total of 140 F-5Fs were built by Northrop.

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