The McDonnell XF-85 Goblin Parasite Fighter Concept.

by Daniel Russ on January 14, 2011


The XF-85 Goblin parasite fighter concept under a B-29

The XF-85 Goblin


The McDonnell XF-85 Goblin was a parasite plane concept. Think of the giant B-36 Peacemaker has the host body and the Goblin as the parasite. We were not the first to come up with the idea of a fighter launching out of larger aircraft. The Russians had experimental parasite fighters attached to Tupelov bombers and the Curtis Aircraft Corporation also created a parasite fighter plane with a bi-plane called the F9C Sparrowhawk.


The Goblin was 15 feet long and about five feet wide with the wings folded. It was held in the bomb bay of the huge B-36, and lowered into the air where it started its engines and detached from the arresting gear.


Then it is thought that it would actually do aerial combat with attacking fighters. After combat the arresting gear would be extended again under the bomber, the Goblin pilot would the maneuver the plane to reattach it and it would then be pulled back inside.


The actual prototype tests were carried out using a B-29 Superfortress. The Goblin actually flew in 1948, but the pilot could not re attach it to the gear because the turbulence created in the air by the bomber.  The first attempt resulted in a near fatal crash when the Goblin impacted into the gear and cracked open the canopy and ripped off the mask from the pilot who saved the test model by belly landing it in the Mohave desert.

The pilot survived. The program however, did not.


XF-85 Goblin In Wind Tunnel Test

XF-85 Goblin


XF-85 Goblin

XF-85 Goblin


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