The Museum's F-86A was assigned to the 4th Fighter Interceptor Group at Langley Air Force Base, Virginia. It was later flown in Korea from Kimpo Air Base near Seoul.
In the fall 1944, Army Air Forces ordered 3 prototypes of modified, straight-wing, FJ-1 Fury being designed for Navy. Later, data indicated straight-wing design could not meet required 600+ mph speed. After much deliberation based on captured German aerodynamic data, 35 swept- wing design accepted. Because of inherent low-speed stability problems with swept wings, automatic leading edge slats added. Control excellent throughout flight regime. "D" was first model with all-movable elevator--avoided control problems experienced by some other aircraft at high-subsonic Mach numbers. At these high speeds, shock wave could form over elevators and cause controls to be erratic, ineffective, or in some cases, cause control reversal. Mig-15 lacked this feature and could not operate effectively above .92 Mach. 86's design contributed to high kill ratio over Migs.