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Boeing XP-8 (U.S. Air Force photo)
Role Fighter
Manufacturer Boeing
First flight January 1928
Introduction Cancelled
Primary user U.S. Army Air Corps
Number built 1
Developed from PW-9
Variants Boeing F2B

The Boeing XP-8 (Boeing Model 66) was a prototype American biplane fighter of the 1920s, notable for its unusual design incorporating the engine radiator into the lower wing.[1]

Design and development[edit | edit source]

Boeing developed the prototype in 1926 as a private venture, with the goal of winning the Army Air Corps competition announced in 1925. Designated by Boeing as its Model 66, the airframe was basically a PW-9 with an experimental 600 hp Packard 2A-1500 engine. In order to streamline around the engine, the radiator was moved back so that the opening coincided with the front edge of the lower wing, resulting in an unusually narrow profile around the engine.

Testing[edit | edit source]

Army testing of the aircraft began in January 1928, and it handled well, but performance was lacking, achieving only a maximum speed of 173.2 mph. Even so, the prototype continued in Air Corps service until June 1929, after which it was scrapped. The airframe design lived on in the Navy's Boeing F2B.

Operators[edit | edit source]

United States

Specifications (XP-8)[edit | edit source]

Data from Fighters of the United States Air Force[2]

General characteristics

  • Crew: One
  • Length: 23 ft 5 in (7.14 m)
  • Wingspan: 30 ft 1 in (9.17 m)
  • Height: 9 ft 0 in (2.74 m)
  • Wing area: 260 ft² (24.15 m²)
  • Empty weight: 2,390 lb (1,084 kg)
  • Max. takeoff weight: 3,421 lb (1,552 kg)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Packard 2A-1500 liquid cooled piston engine, 600 hp (448 kW)


  • Maximum speed: 153 knots (176 mph, 283 km/h) at 6,000 ft (1,830 m)
  • Cruise speed: 129 knots (148 mph, 238 km/h)
  • Range: 283 nm (325 mi, 523 km)
  • Service ceiling: 20,950 ft (6,386 m)
  • Rate of climb: 1,750 ft/min (8.89 m/s)


See also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

Notes[edit | edit source]

  1. Jones 1975, p. 34–35.
  2. Dorr and Bishop 1990, p.40.

Bibliography[edit | edit source]

  • Boeing Company. Pedigree of Champions: Boeing Since 1916, Third Edition. Seattle, Washington: The Boeing Company, 1969.
  • Dorr, Robert F. and Donald, David. Fighters of the United States Air Force. London: Temple, 1990. ISBN 0-600-55094-X.
  • Jones, Lloyd S. U.S. Fighters: Army-Air Force 1925 to 1980s. Fallbrook, California: Aero Publishers, Inc., 1975. ISBN 0-8168-9200-8.

External links[edit | edit source]

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