Jul 192011

The Super-Hustler was a Convair design for a three-stage manned vehicle capable of Mach 4. The first stage was a Convair B-58 bomber; the second stage was an unmanned and expendable ramjet powered booster; the third stage was a two-man, one- or two-engined ramjet vehicle that could do recon, bombardment or both.

The design got fairly far along, including detailed design drawings and mockups. The cockpit mockup was an important item, as it helped the engineers to determine the feasibility of the concept. Due to the high speeds and relatively small size of the vehicle, it was not practical to equip it with a conventional canopy which would provide useful forward vision. This would of course be a serious issue during landing, so the design was fitted with a television camera in the extreme nose.

Several photos of the Super Hustler cockpit mockup have come to light. Below are three that show the instruments in some detail, while still managing to be really quite awful in quality.

 Posted by at 11:58 am