||First flight|| Introduction
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Design and development
Designed by the company as its Model 74, the plane was an incremental improvement over the F2B. The Navy-designated prototype XF3B-1 still had the tapered wings of the F2B for instance, but was built as a single-float seaplane using the FB-5 undercarriage. However, the growing use of aircraft carriers took away most of the need for floating fighters, and by the time other test results had been taken into account, the production F3B-1 (Model 77) had a larger upper wing that was slightly swept back and a redesigned tail with surfaces made from corrugated aluminum. It also eliminated the spreader bar arrangement of the undercarriage and revised the vertical tail shape.
It first flew on 3 February 1928, turning in a respectable performance and garnering Boeing a contract for 73 more. F3Bs served as fighter-bombers for some four years with the squadrons VF-2B aboard USS Langley, VB-2B aboard USS Saratoga (later VF-6B), and VB-1B on USS Lexington, during which period some were fitted with Townend rings and others with streamlined wheel fairings.The aircraft remained in first-line service to 1932 and were then retained as "hacks" (command and staff transports) for several more years.
- (Model 74) One prototype serial number A7674
- (Model 77) Single-seat fighter biplane for the US Navy, 73 aircraft serial numbers A7675-A7691; A7708-A7763
Data from The Complete Encyclopedia of World Aircraft General characteristics
- Crew: 1
- Length: 24 ft 10 in (7.57 m)
- Wingspan: 33 ft (10.06 m)
- Height: 9 ft 2 in (2.79 m)
- Wing area: 275 ft² (25.55 m²)
- Empty weight: 2,179 lb (988 kg)
- Max. takeoff weight: 2,945 lb (1,336 kg)
- Powerplant: 1 × Pratt & Whitney R-1340-80 Wasp radial engine, 425 hp (317 kW)
- Maximum speed: 157 mph (137 knots, 253 km/h)
- Cruise speed: 131 mph (114 knots, 211 km/h)
- Range: 340 mi (296 nm, 547 km)
- Service ceiling: 21,500 ft (6,555 m)
- Rate of climb: 2,020 ft/min (10.26 m/s)</ul>Armament
- Guns: Two 0.3 in (7.62mm) forward firing Browning machine guns in the forward fuselage
- Bombs: Five 25 lb (11.3 kg) bombs carried under the fuselage and lower wing
- Swanborough and Bowers 1976, p. 61.
- Jones 1977, pp. 60–62.
- Eden and Moeng 2002, p. 319.
- Eden, Paul and Soph Moeng, eds. The Complete Encyclopedia of World Aircraft. London: Amber Books, 2002. ISBN 0-7607-3432-1.
- Jones, Lloyd S. U.S. Naval Fighters. Fallbrook, California: Aero Publishers, 1977. ISBN 0-8168-9254-7.
- Swanborough, Gordon and Peter M. Bowers. United States Navy Aircraft Since 1911. Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press, 1976. ISBN 0-87021-968-5.
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