Monday, September 2, 2013


Sometimes identifying toy aircraft is easy - the manufacturers tell you what the plane is right on the plane itself. A good example is the Pyro F7U Cutlass posted here on Toys & Stuff just a few weeks back on Aug 1. The designation 'F7U CUTLASS' is molded on the underside of the port wing. But Pyro's companion jet shown here today has nothing but the star-&-bar insignia molded onto the wing. A similar plane in silver-gray HP was featured here back on May 24, 2012 but at the time I didn't know what it was either. A part of that whole not knowing thing is just laziness because I simply didn't feel like spending the time to research these things. Well, I've decided to take the plunge and do what I can to find out what some of these unknown planes are. Of course, toy makers will do what they want and make toys based on nothing more than their imagination, and they will at times mis-identify the aircraft leading collectors down the primrose path of confusion. But I've already discovered that the hunt for identity can be fun and so begins a new chapter in Toys & Stuff coverage of aircraft.

I'm going to take plunge and identify today's Pyro aircraft as a Lockheed XF-90 which measures 7 5/8" (19.4cm) L x 4 1/4" (10.8cm) wingspan x 2 5/8" (6.7cm) H. There were only two XF-90s built and it was the first Air Force jet equipped with an afterburner. As a result of under-performing engines, the design ultimately lost out to McDonell's XF-88 which was then the basis for the F-101 Voodoo. The XF-90 design itself would live on in the Blackhawk Squadron in comic books of the 1950s. I've found it rather odd after looking at a bunch of toy aircraft that so many of them were based on experimental aircraft instead of regular production line aircraft. Was it perhaps the toy companies desire to stay modern and current?  Anyway, because of the wide variety of aircraft offered by the toy makers it's quite possible to follow America's air power progress through the years, which would make for another cool project here on Toys & Stuff. Enjoy!