Aircraft / Aviation Vehicles & Artillery Small Arms Warships & Submarines Military Ranks Military Pay Scale (2024) Special Forces

Curtiss XP-31 Swift

Single-Seat Monoplane Fighter Prototype

United States | 1932

"The Curtiss XP-31 Swift monoplane fighter prototype lost out to a Boeing product that would become the P-26 Peashooter series."

Power & Performance
Those special qualities that separate one aircraft design from another. Performance specifications presented assume optimal operating conditions for the Curtiss XP-31 Single-Seat Monoplane Fighter Prototype.
1 x Curtiss GIV-1570-F Conqueror 12-cylinder liquid-cooled engine developing 600 horsepower and driving a three-bladed propeller at the nose.
208 mph
335 kph | 181 kts
Max Speed
24,409 ft
7,440 m | 5 miles
Service Ceiling
373 miles
600 km | 324 nm
Operational Range
The nose-to-tail, wingtip-to-wingtip physical qualities of the Curtiss XP-31 Single-Seat Monoplane Fighter Prototype.
26.2 ft
8.00 m
O/A Length
36.1 ft
(11.00 m)
O/A Width
7.9 ft
(2.40 m)
O/A Height
3,340 lb
(1,515 kg)
Empty Weight
4,145 lb
(1,880 kg)
Available supported armament and special-mission equipment featured in the design of the Curtiss XP-31 Swift Single-Seat Monoplane Fighter Prototype .
2 x 0.30 caliber Browning M1919 machine guns in engine cowling.
2 x 0.30 caliber Browning M1919 machine guns in fuselage "cheek" positions.
Notable series variants as part of the Curtiss XP-31 Swift family line.
XP-31 "Swift" - Base Series Designation; single prototype example completed.

Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 05/18/2022 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site; No A.I. was used in the generation of this content.

Curtiss Aeroplane and Motor Company was a major player in the fighter industry during the 1920s and 1930s. One of the many contributions of the period became the prototype XP-31 "Swift" monoplane. Only one was ever built as it lost in competition to a Boeing design which became the famous P-26 "Peashooter" monoplane fighter (detailed elsewhere on this site).

The XP-31 was a product of its time, appearing in-between the major World Wars where spatted undercarriages, enclosed cockpits and metal skinning were becoming the norm. Work began in 1931 by Curtiss and involved a braced, low-mounting monoplane wing structure with traditional single-finned tail unit. The main landing gear legs were heavily faired over (from leg to wheel) and the engine was set within a streamlined nose. The single pilot sat in an enclosed cockpit space just aft of the wing mainplanes.

In its original form, the Swift was powered by a Wright T-1820 "Cyclone" air-cooled radial engine of 700 horsepower at the nose driving a two-bladed propeller unit. A first-flight was recorded in July of 1932. This aircraft carried with it full-span, retractable leading-edge slats and trailing edge flaps for maximum low-speed control. When performance was shown to be lacking in this initial iteration, the aircraft was re-engined to carry the Curtiss GIV-1570-F "Conqueror" 12-cylinder engine of 600 horsepower with Prestone cooling (now driving a three-bladed propeller). This model was formally accepted for the USAAC competition against the Boeing entry.

However, despite the testing scheduled for Match 1st, 1933, the XP-31 had already been surpassed by the superior Boeing design and chosen as the next fighter for the USAAC. As such, the XP-31 quickly fell to history and the sole example was ultimately scrapped in 1935.

As completed, the XP-31 sported a length of 8 meters, a wingspan of 11 meters and a height of 2.4 meters. Empty weight was 1,512 kilograms against an MTOW of 1,880kg. Maximum speed reached 335 kmh (208mph) and range was out to 595 kilometers (370 miles). Its service ceiling was 7,440 meters (24,400 feet).

Proposed armament was 2 x 7.62mm M1919 Browning machine guns in fixed, forward-firing mountings within the engine cowl and 2 x 7.62mm M1919 Browning machine guns in fixed, forward-firing mountings at the "cheek" positions of the fuselage.

Content ©MilitaryFactory.com; No Reproduction Permitted.
Global customers who have evaluated and/or operated the Curtiss XP-31 Swift. Nations are displayed by flag, each linked to their respective national aircraft listing.

Total Production: 1 Units

Contractor(s): Curtiss Aeroplane and Motor Company - USA
National flag of the United States

[ United States (cancelled) ]
1 / 1
Image of the Curtiss XP-31 Swift
Image from the Public Domain.

Going Further...
The Curtiss XP-31 Swift Single-Seat Monoplane Fighter Prototype appears in the following collections:
Disclaimer | Privacy Policy | Cookies

2024 Military Pay Scale Military Ranks of the World U.S. Department of Defense Dictionary Conversion Calculators Military Alphabet Code Military Map Symbols Breakdown U.S. 5-Star Generals List WWII Weapons by Country

The "Military Factory" name and MilitaryFactory.com logo are registered ® U.S. trademarks protected by all applicable domestic and international intellectual property laws. All written content, illustrations, and photography are unique to this website (unless where indicated) and not for reuse/reproduction in any form. Material presented throughout this website is for historical and entertainment value only and should not to be construed as usable for hardware restoration, maintenance, or general operation. We do not sell any of the items showcased on this site. Please direct all other inquiries to militaryfactory AT gmail.com. No A.I. was used in the generation of this content.

Part of a network of sites that includes GlobalFirepower, a data-driven property used in ranking the top military powers of the world, WDMMA.org (World Directory of Modern Military Aircraft), WDMMW.org (World Directory of Modern Military Warships), SR71blackbird.org, detailing the history of the world's most iconic spyplane, and MilitaryRibbons.info, cataloguing military medals and ribbons. Special Interest: RailRoad Junction, the locomotive encyclopedia.

©2024 www.MilitaryFactory.com • All Rights Reserved • Content ©2003-2024 (21yrs)