in "Golden Hawks" Aerobatic Team Colours.
The North American F-86 Sabre was first flown on 01 October 1947 and the
aircraft quickly proved to be a highly successful design. In 1949, with the
formation of NATO the Canadian government made the decision to re-equip the RCAF’s
front-line fighter squadrons with modern aircraft and the F-86 Sabre was type
Consequently, an agreement was reached between North American and Canadair Limited of Montreal to manufacture 100 F-86As in Canada.
After the first prototype, designated CL-13 Sabre Mk I, Canadair immediately began production in earnest with an improved Mk II model. The Mark II was essentially an F-86E with an "all flying " tailplane to provide better flying characteristics as well as a flat windscreen. The next major production model was the Mark IV which originally was to have been powered by an Orenda designed engine but to retain commonality with the F-86E, it carried the J47-GE-13. Various design improvements were incorporated throughout the aircraft. 438 Mk IV Sabres rolled off the assembly lines. The Mark V Sabre was the first production model with a Canadian engine utilizing the Orenda 10 version rated at 6,355 lbs thrust. The bigger Orenda engine necessitated a larger diameter opening in fuselage frames and stronger engine mounts.
An important structural modification was the introduction of a fixed leading edge to replace the automatic slats on earlier versions. This change was designed to enhance the high altitude performance of the aircraft. Small wing fences were also introduced at the 70% span position. These modifications were successful but also resulted in a corresponding decrease in low speed handling characteristics.
After the construction of 370 Mk V aircraft, Canadair moved on to the final (and best) version, the Mark VI. This version carried the two stage Orenda 14 engine with a 7,275 lb thrust rating. The wing leading slats were re-introduced while retaining portions of the Mk V wing configuration. The Mk VI therefore acquired superb combat manoeuvring. With this combination of engine and aerodynamics, the Mark VI was widely regarded as the best "dog-fighter" of its era. The RCAF’s Golden Hawks team flew Mk V aircraft initially but were soon equipped with the excellent Mk VI aircraft.
Manufacturer: North American designed and built by Canadair
Designation: F-86 Model No: CL-13 Marks: Mk 1,2, 3,4 ,5, 6
TOS: 1950 SOS: 1970 No: 1184
Service: RCAF, CF
SPECIFICATIONS Mk VI
Crew / Passengers: 1 pilot in ejection seat
Powerplant: Orenda Series 14 Turbojet @ 7,440 lbs thrust
Performance: Max Speed: 698 kts (1,293 km/h) Cruising Speed: 552 kts (1,023 km/h)
Service Ceiling: 54,100 ft (16,490 m) Range: 1,486 m (2,391 km)
Weights: Empty: 10,638 lbs (4,825 kg) Max T/O: 17,560 lbs (7,965 m)
Dimensions: Span: 37 ft 11/2 in (11.32 m) Length: 37 ft 6 in (11.43 m) Height 14 ft 9 in (4.50 m)
Armament: Six .50 calibre machine guns + Provisions for tanks, bombs, & rockets (unguided)
Original Cost: $360,000