The Vickers Supermarine Seafang

The Vickers Supermarine Seafang

The Vickers Supermarine Seafang was a naval adaptation of the Vickers Supermarine Spiteful, which is described separately elsewhere on this website.

The prototype Seafang F.31 was a Spiteful F.XV (RB520), fitted with a sting-type arrester hook and a five-blade propeller. It was first flown in this form in January 1946.

Ten of the interim Seafang F.31 models were built, the first of these being Seafang F.31 (VG471). Another of the ten (VG474) was used as a development aircraft for the Vickers Supermarine Attacker with modifications including the fitment of power-operated ailerons and contra-rotating propeller.

The final fully-navalised production model, built to Specification N.5/45, was the Vickers Supermarine Seafang 32, which featured powered wing folding and a 2,340 hp Griffon 85, driving a contra-rotating propeller.

The first definitive prototype Seafang was an Mk32 (VB895), which flew in June 1946. It was demonstrated extensively to The Royal Netherlands Navy, as well as being the aircraft piloted by Mike Lithgow during the deck landing trials on HMS Illustrious in May 1947.

Production comprised three prototypes and comprised 10 Seafang F.31 and 6 Seafang F.32.

The laminar flow wing for the Vickers Supermarine Spiteful and Seafang was also the basis for the wing design of the Supermarine Attacker, Britain’s first carrier-based jet fighter to enter service.

Specification (Seafang F.32)

Powerplant One 2,350 hp Rolls-Royce Griffon 69
Span 35 ft 0 in
Maximum Weight 10.450 lb
Capacity and armament Pilot only, four 20 mm Hispano cannon, provision for underwing carriage of four 300 lb rockets or two 1,000 lb bombs
Maximum Speed 475 mph at 21,000 ft
Range 393 miles at 220 – 240 mph


Variants & Numbers built

Type 382 Seafang F.31 Prototypes and initial production: Single propeller, no wing fold. 13 built
Type 396 Seafang F.32 Fully navalised: Contra-rotating propeller and powered wing fold. 6 built
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