CAC CA-27 Avon Sabre

Inside the Archive #1 

DON’T, WHATEVER you do, confuse the original US Air Force F-86 Sabre with Australia’s variant, the CAC CA-27 Avon Sabre. Why? Because RAAF had by far the superior model. Here a bit of explaining is needed. The original Sabre began its development at the latter stage of WWII, but it quickly became apparent that it wasn’t going to meet requirements. Sent back to the drawing board, it was significantly redesigned to incorporate a swept wing and flew for the first time in October 1947. Whatever they did worked: it quickly broke the sound barrier in a shallow dive, making it – arguably – the first aircraft in the world to achieve the feat. 

Fast-forward into the ’50s, and Australia handed Commonwealth Aircraft Corporation (CAC) the task of building its version. Its edition, though, featured a far more powerful Rolls-Royce Avon RA.7 turbojet engine, revised cockpit layout, ability to carry cannons over machine guns and a bigger fuel capacity. The result was the Avon Sabre. 

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