Hawker Fury


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Fury I

Certainly the fastest and aesthetically one of the most elegant biplanes to enter service with the RAF, the Fury was evolved from an unnamed interceptor-fighter prototype which subsequently managed a level speed of more than 320km/h. Because the Air Ministry changed the official specification for a new fighter to include an inline rather than radial engine, Hawker developed the supercharged Rolls-Royce Kestrel F.XIS / D.XII S-engined Hornet. Later renamed Fury, it was evaluated against the beautiful Fairey Fantome (first flown on 16 January 1930). Emerging the winner, production of the Fury I began: the first 333km/h aircraft flying for the first time on 26 March 1931.

Altogether 118 were completed for the RAF with 391kW Kestrel IIS engines. In addition, Hawker Fury number 401, powered by an Armstrong Siddeley Panther IIIA engine and flown on 5 August 1932, was exported to Norway, 16 Pratt & Whitney Hornet-powered Furies went to Persia, three Furies to Portugal and six Hispano-Suiza 12-engined aircraft to Yugoslavia.

Fury Is first went to No 43 Squadron, RAF in mid-1931. Interestingly a Fury I won the coveted speed contest for military aircraft flying over a triangular course at the Zurich international meeting and in 1934 a number of RAF aircraft were sent to Canada to take part in the Centennial celebrations in Toronto.

On 13 April 1932 the private-venture Intermediate Fury made its first flight, basically as a refined Fury I. After further modification it re-emerged with a 477kW Kestrel VI engine, with semi-evaporative cooling, flying for the first time in this form on 1 October 1933. With this engine it achieved a staggering 370km/h. British Aerospace records suggest that this biplane was re-engined in 1934 with a Goshawk III and flown on 17 October of that year, subsequently receiving a later Goshawk engine. More importantly on 3 May 1933 the experimental High Speed Fury flew for the first time. Initially it was powered by a Kestrel engine, with which it became the fastest of all Furies by attaining a speed of 394km/h; later it was fitted with a 518kW Goshawk.

In 1934 it was decided that a Fury I should be fitted with a Kestrel VI with composite cooling, modified fuel and oil systems and streamlined wheel spats as the Fury II. This was first flown on 20 August 1935. Twenty-three production Fury IIs were built by Hawker with increased fuel capacity, followed by 89 from General Aircraft, six of which were delivered to the South African Air Force. Fury IIs entered RAF service in 1937 as an interim measure pending the delivery of greater numbers of monoplane fighters, remaining operational in their designed role until 1939. Exports were made to Yugoslavia, Persia, and Spain.

When introduced into service Fury Is were the RAF's first fighters able to exceed 322km/h in level flight and gave good account of themselves during exercises. They were reliable, highly manoeuvrable and light on the controls and were most popular with their pilots. Fury IIs were even more impressive but were obsolete by the late 1930s and were retired not a moment too soon.

Fury II

 ENGINE1 x Rolls-Royce Kestrel VI, 477kW
  Take-off weight1637 kg3609 lb
  Empty weight1240 kg2734 lb
  Wingspan9.14 m30 ft 0 in
  Length8.15 m27 ft 9 in
  Height3.10 m10 ft 2 in
  Wing area23.41 m2251.98 sq ft
  Max. speed359 km/h223 mph
  Ceiling8990 m29500 ft
  Range435 km270 miles

Hawker FuryA three-view drawing (1650 x 1288)

Tony, e-mail, 19.11.2015 21:33

Cute though it was, for aesthetics, the Hawker Fury is surpassed by the Fairey Fantome /Feroce hands down for me.


agaram, e-mail, 17.07.2011 16:52

Can any one tell me where I can buy a scale model of a Hawker Fury


Paul Grimwood, e-mail, 26.03.2009 10:37

Hi , this would be one of the finest aircraft I,ve seen for a while ,I,m half way through building a 80inch wingspan of one but need more photos of details ie hatchs and riggingany info greatly appriecated thanks Paul


colin fine-thompson, e-mail, 01.10.2008 12:14

Along with the Spitfire, the Hawker Fury was surely the prettiest aircaft ever seen. A convincing proof that 'if it looks right, it is right' I could gaze a a Fury all day!


Černý Luděk, e-mail, 03.04.2007 19:22

more pictures, thank


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