Bell X-5       50-1838


                                      The Bell X-5, which first flew in 1951, was modeled on the Messerschmitt P.1101 design, draw-
                                      ings of which were captured by US troops at the end of WW II and given to Bell Aircraft. This was
                                      the first of the "swing-wing" aircraft, which allowed for different angles of swept wing, depending on
                                      need.  However, whereas the German machine was designed to change wing sweep prior to each
                                      flight on the ground, the Bell aircraft was much more complicated and could change the angle of sweep
                                      whilst in flight.  The aircraft shown above was one of two built and is currently on display at the USAF
                                      Museum at Wright Patterson AFB in Ohio.  The second prototype (50-1839) crashed at Edwards
                                      AFB on 14 October 1953 when it entered an irrecoverable spin during stall tests, resulting in the death
                                      of the pilot.