On September 10, 1956, North American Aircraft Company test pilot Bob Baker, took off from Edwards AFB on the maiden Flight of the YF-107A prototype, accompanied by the TF-100C (two seat trainer prototype) which flew as chase. The flight warning light caused Baker to make an immediate return to base. Pushing over into a dive, the aircraft exceeded Mach 1. The aircraft was still heavy with fuel and when the landing flaps were fully deployed the aircraft tried to roll violently, so the flaps were retracted the brought to about 20%. The touch down was made well above the rated speed and weight for the landing gear tires and brakes. Baker deployed The drag chute, and it immediately departed the aircraft unopened. Afraid that a blown tire or locked brake might cause the aircraft to ground loop, he let the aircraft roll off the paved runway onto the dry lake bed. The aircraft had nearly stopped when it hit a small ditch caused by a rain storm days earlier. The nose gear sheared off, and the fighter settled on the nose cone - which departed - and finally with the radome bulkhead digging its own trench, the aircraft came to a stop after approximately a 20,000 ft. landing roll. Baker was uninjured, and the aircraft was repaired and flying three days later.
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YF-107A Ultra Sabre
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