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North American F-86E/F Sabre: Fuel Tank System Reference

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IMPORTANT: All information is inteded for use with Microsoft Flight Simulator only and not for real aviation. It is also strongly recommended that read the Flight Manual and Checklist before your first flight.


To avoid total weight exceeding maximum gross weight, we recommend you reduce fuel in Fwd Fuselage Tank (upper cell and/or Aft Fuselage Tank (use FS2004/FSX fuel and payload menu and save flight as new start-up situation). Although possible, do not refill external tanks which already have been dropped. The fuel cannot be burned and tanks will remain considered dropped by FS2004/FSX until the flight situation is saved and reloaded (see below).

 Internal Fuel Quantity FS2004/FSX
Fuel Menu
gals (lbs.)
 Fwd Fuselage Tank (lower cell) Middle 90 (603)
 Left Wing Tank Left 67 (449)
 Right Wing Tank Right 67 (449)
 Fwd Fuselage Tank (upper cell) Center 2 106 (710)
 Aft Fuselage Tank Center 3 105 (703)

Use of external drop tanks is optional:
 Left Drop Tank External 1 200 (1340)
 Right Drop Tank External 2 200 (1340)

Creating flight situations with or without external tanks:

During init (when aircraft is loaded), external tanks are detected as attached to the aircraft if they are not completely empty. Therefore, to create a start-up situation for a Sabre without external tanks, drop the tanks on ground (or completely empty them in the FS fuel and payload menu). Then, save the situation as new flight.

To create a flight situation with empty external tanks (visible but with no fuel inside), do not completely empty the drop tanks in the FS fuel and payload menu, instead keep a minimum amount of fuel (ie. 1 gallon per tank), to be detected when the flight is loaded next time. Example: Your flight consists of more than one session and during each leg, external tanks are to be used and dropped. To ensure that the aircraft will be re-fitted with drop tanks at the beginning of the next leg, refuel the drop tanks before you save the current situation as start-up situation for the next leg (FS allows to refuel the tanks in the FS fuel and payload menu although they have been dropped earlier).

Recommended filling order:

A. Fwd Fuselage Tank (lower cell)
B. Left Wing Tank and Right Wing Tank
C. Fwd Fuselage Tank (upper cell) and/or Aft Fuselage Tank
D. Left Drop Tank and Right Drop Tank

When calculating the amount of fuel needed, ensure that the maximum landing weight (15,475 lbs.) won't be exceeded. Airplane weight and balance data (center of gravity) may be checked at any time during a flight with Airplane Status Popup window and the Cockpit-Quick-Infos of the Fuel Flowmeter displays the tank name currently feeding the engine.

Fuel usage procedure:

All tanks drain directly or indirectly into Fwd Fuselage Tank (lower cell), therefore being always the last tank which becomes empty.

1. If drop tanks are installed, set Drop Tank Pressure Shutoff Valve to position ON. Fuel from external drop tanks is used first. Bleed air from engine compressor is directed into each drop tank, draining fuel from there into Forward Fuselage Tank (upper cell). For engine start, or with Drop Tank Pressure Shutoff Valve closed, internal fuel is used. When drop tanks are empty or have been released, the Fuel Quantitiy Gage needle automatically indicates the amount of internal fuel.

2. When drop tanks are depleted, set Drop Tank Pressure Shutoff Valve to OFF and release tanks with Drop Tank Jettison Button.

3. Use Fuel Transfer Pump Switch to consume either fuel from Aft Fuselage Tank or Forward Fuselage Tank (upper cell).

Both, the Forward Fuselage Tank (upper cell) and Aft Fuselage Tank drain intoForward Fuselage Tank (lower cell), but fuel transfer from Aft Fuselage Tank requires an electrical transfer pump. Therefore, the position of the Fuel Transfer Pump Switch decides, which tank is emptied first: If turned ON, the fuel from Aft Fuselage Tank is feeding, otherwise fuel is taken from Forward Fuselage Tank (upper cell): May be used for trimming, ie. center of gravity is shifted towards nose if fuel transfer pump is turned on.

Once the Forward Fuselage Tank (upper cell) has completely drained into Forward Fuselage Tank (lower cell), and the Aft Fuselage Tank is exhausted, too (or its fuel cannot be used because of the transfer pump is turned off), the Left/Right Wing Tanks as well as the Forward Fuselage Tank (lower cell)are consumed simultaneously. Since the wing tanks contain much less fuel, they get exhausted before the Forward Fuselage Tank (lower cell), so that this is always the last tank getting empty.

Due to limitations within the FS2004/FSX fuel system, there is a slightly different fuel consumption in case of the drop tanks or the Aft Fuselage Tank contain fuel, which can't be burned. In that case, the wing tanks are emptied completely before any fuel from the Forward Fuselage Tank (lower cell)is taken (and not simultaneously together with the fuselage tank).

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