During World War II, Boeing worked on designing a single-seat, single-engine aircraft for the US Navy, resulting in various versions including the Model 398. This aircraft featured a single wing, seat, and engine design, intended for mid-to-high altitude flight, but its development didn't progress far. The subsequent version added bomb-carrying capability, transforming it into a fighter-bomber, armed with machine guns on the wings.
The Model 398 had folding wings for carrier operations, reinforced landing gear, and a tail hook. It boasted a unique design with counter-rotating propellers and a streamlined cockpit. With a length of 43.8 feet, wingspan of 54 feet, and weight of around 14,000 pounds, it could reach speeds exceeding 456 mph and climb rapidly. However, the aircraft didn't gain much traction and was phased out alongside other similar designs.
Boeing's efforts in developing these fighter concepts showcased innovation, but ultimately the Model 398 and its variations didn't become prominent in the US Navy's operations during World War II.
Years in Service: 1943
Origins: United States
Manufacturer: Boeing Company - USA
Carrier: US (obsolete)
Air-to-air combat, fighter
The general ability to actively attack other aircraft of similar form and function, usually using guns, missiles and/or airborne missiles.
Ground attack (bombing, strafing)
The ability to conduct air strikes against ground targets using (but not limited to) artillery, bombs, rockets, rockets, etc.
Water mobility capability for a variety of land-based or ship-based maritime missions, supported by Allied Naval Surface Forces.
X-Plane (development, prototype, tech demo)
Aircraft designed for prototyping, technology demonstration, or research/data collection.
Length: 43.8 feet (13.35m)
Width/span: 54. 0 feet (16.45m)
Height: 16.0 feet (4.88m)
Cured weight: 12,346 lbs (5,600 kg)
MTOW: 16,314 lbs (7,400 kg)
Wgt Difference: +3,968 lbs (+1,800 kg)
1 x Pratt & Whitney R-4360 Wasp Major 28-cylinder, 4-row, air-cooled, radial piston engine producing 3,000 hp and driving a 2 x 3-blade counter-rotating nose propeller unit.
Maximum speed: 457 km/h (735 km/h | 397 knots)
Maximum: 44,997 feet (13,715 m | 9 km)
Area: 1,131 km (1,820 km | 3,371 nautical miles)
Rate of climb: 5,150 ft/min (1,570 m/min)
6 x .50 caliber Browning M2 air-cooled heavy machine guns (HMG) in the wings (three per wing).
1 x 2,000 lb conventional drop bomb secured in internal compartment (replaces internal fuel storage).