Hobby Master 1/72 Air Power Series
HA1047 F-104N 811, NASA Dryden Flight Test Center, Edwards AFB, 1979

The Lockheed YF-104A made its first flight February 17, 1956. The aircraft had a redesigned lengthened fuselage, relocated vertical stabilizer, a ventral stabilizing fin, redesigned air intake ducts all powered by the GE79 axial-flow engine. These modifications increased the stability of the aircraft. The 17 YF-104As were used to flight-test various engines, the Vulcan cannon, Sidewinder missiles and wingtip fuel tanks. The YF-104A was used to set a zoom climb record of 91,249 feet and a record speed of 1404.19 mph making it the first aircraft to hold these records at the same time.

There were three purpose-built single-seat Starfighters manufactured by Lockheed for NASA. These aircraft were designated as F-104N 011, 012 and 013 used as high-speed chase planes. On August 19, 1963 NASA011 was delivered to NASA FRC and in 1970 it was repainted in NASA’s white dark-blue light-blue. Later the colors became just white and blue and the aircraft was coded N811NA. The aircraft’s last official flight took place on October 23, 1987 having amassed 4,370 flights. The final location for N811NA is at the Embry Riddle Aeronautical University.

Specifications Lockheed YF-104A
The YF-104A was a pre-production aircraft used for engine, equipment, and flight testing
First type of aircraft to reach and maintain Mach 2
Length – 16.6 m 54 ft 9 in Wingspan – 6.7 m 21 ft 11 in Height – 4.1 M 13 ft 6 in
Maximum Take Off – 13,166 kg 29,026 lbs Maximum Payload – 2,800 kg 6,173 lbs
Power Plant – 1 X GE J79 Jet Thrust – 15,600 pounds-force Maximum Cruise Speed – 2,334 Km/h 1,260 knots Range – 2,630 km 1,420 Nautical Miles Service Ceiling – 58,000 ft Rate Of Climb – 48,000 ft/min