North American F-86F Sabre (25385 / FU-385) as used by the US Air Force (USAF) at the Military Aviation Museum, Kamp Zeist (the Netherlands)
The North American F-86 Sabre, sometimes called the "Sabrejet", was a transonic jet fighter aircraft. Produced by North American Aviation,
the Sabre is best known as the United States' first swept wing fighter which could counter the similarly-winged Soviet MiG-15 in high-speed dogfights over the skies of the Korean War (1950–1953). Considered one of the best and most important fighter aircraft in that war, the F-86 is also rated highly in comparison with fighters of other eras. Although it was developed in the late 1940s and was outdated by the end of the 1950s, the Sabre proved versatile and adaptable, and continued as a front-line fighter in numerous air forces until the last active operational examples were retired by the Bolivian Air Force in 1994. Its success led to an extended production run of more than 7800 aircraft between 1949 and 1956, in the Unites States, Japan and Italy. Variants were built in Canada and Australia. The Canadair Sabre added another 1815 airframes, and the significantly redesigned CAC Sabre (sometimes known as the Avon Sabre or CAC CA-27), had a production run of 112. The Sabre was by far the most-produced Western jet fighter, with total production of all variants at 9860 units.
This North American F-86F Sabre has a fake United States Air Force (USAF) registration 25385 (52-5385) and FU-385;
its previous identities include: 52-5180 (United States Air Force) and 5307 (Portuguese Air Force)
It flew from 1955 until 1956 with the 512th Fighter-Day Squadron of the US Air Force in Europe (USAFE) based at Soesterberg Air Base.
The squadron markings of the F-86s were with three green bands at the vertical tail, as seen on the photo above.
In September 1955, the designation of the 512th was transferred to RAF Shepherds Grove Air Base in the United Kingdom.
Its aircraft, personnel and equipment however stayed in the Netherlands, and made up the newly activated 32nd Fighter-Day Squadron.