The Hawker Sea Fury Mk.X was the first production version of the Sea Fury, and was a short-lived air superiority fighter that was soon replaced by the FB.11 fighter bomber.
The first production Mk.X, TF 895, made its maiden flight on 30 September 1946, and was followed by another 49 Mk.Xs (FR895-928 and TF940-955). The Mk.X was powered by the Bristol Centaurus 18 radial engine, on a flexible mounting that solved many of the problems associated with the new engine. It was armed with four 20mm Mk V Hispano cannons, with a total of 580 rounds of ammo, and was seen as an air superiority fighter that was to replace the Seafire XVII. Most of the first twenty aircraft were used for experiments and trials, either at Bristol or Hawker.
After Carrier trials early in 1947 the Sea Fury received service clearance in the summer of 1947. Three Mk.Xs were sent to No.778 Squadron and one to No.807 Squadron for operational training, although each squadron soon lost one aircraft in a crash. No.807 Squadron was the first operational squadron to convert to the Mk.X.
Between August 1947 and April 1948 Nos.802, 803 and 805 Squadrons also received the aircraft, but in February 1948 the much improved Seafire 47 entered service, and the Fleet Air Arm decided to use that aircraft as its main air superiority fighter. Tests had already proved that the Sea Fury could carry up to 2,000lb of weapons under its wings, and so it was decided to switch production to the Sea Fury FB.11 fighter bomber, which entered service in May 1948. By the end of the year most Sea Fury squadrons had moved onto the new model.
Engine: Centaurus XVIII air-cooled radial
Power: 2,480hp at takeoff, 2,550hp at 4,000ft, 1,600hp at 21,000ft
Wing span: 38ft 4 3/4in
Length: 34ft 3in
Empty Weight: 9,070lb
Loaded Weight: 12,500lb
Max Speed: 465mph at 18,000ft
Time to 30,000ft: 9.8 minutes
Service Ceiling: 36,000ft
Rate of Climb: 3,000ft/ minute
Range: 710 miles
Armament: Four 20mm Hispano Mk V cannons