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Rank VII | Premium | Golden Eagles
Challenger DS Pack
GarageImage F2H-2.jpg
ArtImage F2H-2.png
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The Banshee first started life as the XFD-1 Phantom (not to be confused with the F-4 Phantom II) in the very late stages of World War 2. It was intended to be used during the planned invasion of Japan in 1946. A decent number of Phantoms were built, but they were quickly out of service when the far improved XF2D-1 Banshee was designed. It was more powerful and had more range thanks to its better engines and larger airframe. The F2H-2 Banshee was the second production variant of the Banshee. It had provisions for more fuel tanks and better engines than the F2H-1. The Westinghouse J34-WE-34 engine provided an 8% increase in thrust and allowed for more pylons to be added to the airframe. This would also be the most produced variant, with over 300 being built.

The F2H-2 Banshee was introduced in Update 1.45 "Steel Generals". The F2H-2 Banshee is a fantastic jet fighter with great overall speed and good manoeuvrability. The Banshee is a very stable platform at high speeds. With a structural speed limit of just under 1,000 km/h (621 mph), the Banshee can easily out-dive many early jet fighters. Furthermore, the Banshee comes armed with four chin-mounted 20 mm cannons, which are devastating to enemy aircraft with the air target belt. Overall, this jet is one of the best early US jets; its BR coupled with its very good performance make it a very pleasant aircraft to fly and grind the whole US air tree.

General info

Flight performance

Arrestor gear
Accelerates braking by grabbing the brake cable on the deck of the aircraft carrier
Air brakes
Allows you to dramatically reduce the flight speed by releasing special flaps
Max speed
at 0 m933 km/h
Turn time26 s
Max altitude14 965 m
Engine2 х Westinghouse J34-WE-34
Cooling systemAir
Take-off weight11 t

The F2H-2 Banshee is a carrier-based jet fighter aircraft. The plane is powered by the Westinghouse J34-WE-34 engine, the same that can be found in the F3D-1, although it is over 90 km/h faster than the former in level flight at sea level, it can reach 933 km/h. The Banshee is significantly faster than the F-80C and slower than jets from other nations, the Yak-30, M.D.452, J29 or export versions of the F-84G, also the structural speed which is 994 km/h is lower than their maximum level speed, so it can struggle with catching up to them. Its level acceleration is decent, it varies a lot on the fuel amount since the plane carries a lot of it and when there is 30 minutes or less left it is very comparable to jets at similar battle rating, but any F-86 or MiG-15 version will easily outperform it. When it comes to climbing it can start struggling against any other planes, when the plane is fully loaded it is only 27 m/s and increases to ~37 m/s when there is only 20 minutes (30%) of fuel left. The F2H can fly for around 30 minutes at 100% of power, then it can start to overheat. There is no time limit for flying at 94%.

The manoeuvrability is also decent: at low and medium speed it can give a hard time to jets with swept wings and some other like the F-84G, performing a full horizontal circle will take 25 seconds at 1000 m with full fuel tanks and around 20 seconds with 20 minutes of fuel. The flaps also can decrease the turn time by 20% but their drawback is their quite low speed limit. The plane will suffer from high speed compressibility near 1000 km/h IAS. Since it is a carrier-based jet, its stall speed is low: it varies from 185 to 205 km/h IAS, depending on the weight. The positive and negative G limit for wings are very low, the plane can suffer from wing failure after reaching close to 9G with full loadout. When rolling, it can reach up to 100 degrees per second at 600 km/h IAS and it is mediocre below 300 km/h IAS, 50 degrees per second and lower. The Banshee has also access to airbrakes which can help during landing or in combat situations to slow down the plane.

Characteristics Max Speed
(km/h at 0 m - sea level)
Max altitude
Turn time
Rate of climb
Take-off run
Stock 910 884 14965 26.8 27.8 21.6 20.2 670
Upgraded 947 933 25.8 26.0 33.9 27.4


Combat flaps Take-off flaps Landing flaps Air brakes Arrestor gear Drogue chute
Wings (km/h) Gear (km/h) Flaps (km/h) Max Static G
Combat Take-off Landing + -
994 342 503 473 325 ~8 ~3
Optimal velocities (km/h)
Ailerons Rudder Elevators Radiator
< 620 < 650 < 700 N/A

Engine performance

Engine Aircraft mass
Engine name Number Empty mass Wing loading (full fuel)
Westinghouse J34-WE-34 2 5,620 kg 335 kg/m2
Engine characteristics Mass with fuel (no weapons load) Max Takeoff
Weight (each) Type 20m fuel 30m fuel 45m fuel 60m fuel 69m fuel
600 kg Axial-flow turbojet 6,674 kg 7,178 kg 7,980 kg 8,689 kg 9,142 kg 11,000 kg
Maximum engine thrust @ 0 m (RB / SB) Thrust to weight ratio @ 0 m (100%)
Condition 100% WEP 20m fuel 30m fuel 45m fuel 60m fuel 69m fuel MTOW
Stationary 1,469 kgf N/A 0.44 0.41 0.37 0.34 0.32 0.27
Optimal 1,469 kgf
(0 km/h)
N/A 0.44 0.41 0.37 0.34 0.32 0.27

Survivability and armour

Crew1 person
Speed of destruction
Structural994 km/h
Gear342 km/h

Examine the survivability of the aircraft. Note how vulnerable the structure is and how secure the pilot is, whether the fuel tanks are armoured, etc. Describe the armour, if there is any, and also mention the vulnerability of other critical aircraft systems.

Modifications and economy

Repair costBasic → Reference
AB3 238 → 4 338 Sl icon.png
RB8 838 → 11 842 Sl icon.png
SB11 505 → 15 416 Sl icon.png
Total cost of modifications71 200 Rp icon.png
116 000 Sl icon.png
Talisman cost1 900 Ge icon.png
Crew training68 000 Sl icon.png
Experts240 000 Sl icon.png
Aces1 400 Ge icon.png
Research Aces620 000 Rp icon.png
Reward for battleAB / RB / SB
120 / 330 / 600 % Sl icon.png
184 / 184 / 184 % Rp icon.png
Flight performance Survivability Weaponry
Mods aerodinamic fuse.png
Fuselage repair
4 800 Rp icon.png
7 800 Sl icon.png
250 Ge icon.png
Mods jet compressor.png
4 800 Rp icon.png
7 800 Sl icon.png
250 Ge icon.png
Mods booster.png
New boosters
5 300 Rp icon.png
8 600 Sl icon.png
280 Ge icon.png
Mods aerodinamic wing.png
Wings repair
5 900 Rp icon.png
9 600 Sl icon.png
310 Ge icon.png
Mods jet engine.png
5 900 Rp icon.png
9 600 Sl icon.png
310 Ge icon.png
Mods g suit.png
5 800 Rp icon.png
9 500 Sl icon.png
310 Ge icon.png
Mods armor frame.png
5 300 Rp icon.png
8 600 Sl icon.png
280 Ge icon.png
Mods armor cover.png
5 800 Rp icon.png
9 500 Sl icon.png
310 Ge icon.png
Mods pilon bomb.png
FSBC mk.5
4 800 Rp icon.png
7 800 Sl icon.png
250 Ge icon.png
Mod arrow 1.png
Mods ammo.png
5 300 Rp icon.png
8 600 Sl icon.png
280 Ge icon.png
Mod arrow 1.png
Mods pilon rocket.png
FRC mk.2
5 900 Rp icon.png
9 600 Sl icon.png
310 Ge icon.png
Mod arrow 0.png
Mods weapon.png
5 800 Rp icon.png
9 500 Sl icon.png
310 Ge icon.png
Mods pilon bomb.png
FMBC mk.1
5 800 Rp icon.png
9 500 Sl icon.png
310 Ge icon.png

Compressor and Engine are always useful upgrades and all acceleration unlocks are a top priority. Given the uniqueness of the AN/M3 armament New 20 mm cannons and G-Suit should be preferable tier 4 goals. The stock belts are better than any other type of ammo, due to more two times more HEFI-T inside of them, but for the improved cannons, they need to be researched, albeit that can wait past the G-Suit. To help with the manoeuvrability issues, boosters should be considered a priority as well.


Offensive armament

Main article: M3 (20 mm)

The F2H-2 is armed with:

  • 4 x 20 mm M3 cannons, nose-mounted (150 rpg = 600 total)

Suspended armament

The F2H-2 can be outfitted with the following ordnance:

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
Hardpoints F2H-2.png
250 lb AN-M57 bombs 1* 1 1 1*
500 lb AN-M64A1 bombs 1* 1*
HVAR rockets 1 1 1* 1 1 1* 1 1
200 gal drop tanks 1 1
Maximum permissible weight imbalance: 300 kg
* 500 lb bombs cannot be equipped with ordnance in the adjacent hardpoint
Drop tanks can only be equipped simultaneously.
Default weapon presets
  • 2 x 200 gal drop tanks
  • 8 x HVAR rockets
  • 4 x 250 lb AN-M57 bombs (1,000 lb total)
  • 2 x 500 lb AN-M64A1 bombs (1,000 lb total)

Usage in battles

The Banshee is first in the US naval jet lineup and possesses many characteristics that make it a fantastic start for jet players.

Some tips to use it effectively are:

  • Staying at a high altitude (side-climbing)
  • Avoiding/evading higher-flying prop and jet planes (Stay aware of your surroundings and watch for enemy fighters)
  • Using Boom & Zoom or Hit & Run tactics

In AB, the F2H is actually quite mediocre. Its high BR makes it liable to be put with superior jets such as the Me-262 (which has unlimited fuel, as is characteristic of AB) or the F-86 Sabre.

AB will initially be frustrating as the un-upgraded Banshee is a very poor performer. Its cannons jam, it has a relatively poor climb rate, and acceleration is poor as well.

Once upgraded, however, the Banshee can be a very effective and useful plane.

The F2H-2 is most effectively used as an energy fighter. It has great energy retention, turns well, and accelerates quite well once fully researched. However, the stock Banshee is terrible compared to super-props such as the Tempest Mk II, F8F-1B, La-9, and others. Therefore, it is recommended to climb at the beginning of a match to at least 4-6 km as the Banshee performs extremely well at these altitudes. However, keep in mind that evasion of superior planes such as the F8F-1B or the MiG-15 is key. Once optimal altitude is reached, Boom & Zoom can be employed. The F2H has sluggish controls at speeds below 482 km/h (300 mph) so try to maintain above that speed in level flight. But when facing super-props, low-speed stability coupled with an airbrake makes the Banshee an extremely good prop-killer.

If you are unlucky, you will face the F-86A and MiG-15 in some battles, be sure to avoid them at all costs as they climb far better than the Banshee and have superior top speed.

Unfortunately, like most other jets, modifications take a long while to grind. Go for anything that increases the Banshee's climb rate. Leave the cannon ammo belts alone because default has the most HE shells (besides Stealth), and research the New Cannons modification; It will markedly improve the terrible spread of the cannon.

The cockpit of the F2H-2 is fantastic- the bubble canopy provides good visibility to the front and back of the aircraft.

Even with good advantages as a starting jet fighter (if you went with the Naval Line of USA Fighters), it has some disadvantages going up against MiG-15's and MiG-17's. It can certainly outrun La-174's and La-15's with splendid ease, but it will never be able to outrun a MiG once it's on your tail. As for MiG-9's, they can't outrun the Banshee but can probably out-turn it if the MiG-9 pilot is properly trained and experienced.

It's best used as a support fighter in EVERY situation unless you are down-tiered and you are put against Ho-229's and Me-262's. In this case, you can become an aggressive fighter and easily score some kills. Although if you are put up against MiG-17's, MiG-15's and La-15's, best prepare yourself to side-climb and get behind your allies. Get some altitude and be patient to pursue MiG's that are either chasing Hunters or Sabres or an unfortunate bomber.

A good recommendation is that you should never go for IL-28s alone. Other recommendations are that you should never take rockets or bombs unless you're in a squad and you bomb points together. It is NOT recommended either way. Another tip is to try holding your speed and use airbrakes when being tailed by a MiG.


The F2H-2 is equipped with an AN/APG-30 rangefinding radar, located in the nose of the aircraft. It will automatically detect other planes within the scanning area and display the range to the closest target. It is linked with a gyro gunsight and can help with aiming at close range.

AN/APG-30 - Rangefinding radar
Azimuth Tracking
Elevation Tracking
2,750 m 300 m ±9° ±9°

Pros and cons


  • Amazing firepower (especially when spaded)
  • Very good energy retention
  • Good sustained turn rate
  • Landing hook for carriers


  • Cannon jams quickly and are very inaccurate when stock
  • Large turn radius
  • Poor acceleration
  • Poor instantaneous turn rate


The twin-engine F2H Banshee was a follow up to McDonnell's successful FH-1 Phantom and was designed to become the Navy's next carrier-borne aircraft. The two aircraft appear very similar but the F2H was improved in several ways. Primary upgrades include larger airframe, heavier armament, and better power-plants. Nearly 800 Banshees were built for the Navy and Marine Corps during the early 1950s.

The Banshee saw use in Korea with the Navy and Marines escorting Air Force B-29s on bombing missions but would never encounter an enemy fighter throughout the whole war. As a fighter/bomber, the Banshee saw limited use, but the greatest role the F2H performed in the war was doing reconnaissance over hostile territory. A majority of the F2H's service took place in the Atlantic and Mediterranean oceans but its appeal came from its ability to go unnoticed by enemy forces and would primarily serve recon or escort purposes. The Navy and Marine Corps would retire the Banshee from active service around the early 1960s and would replace it with aircraft such as the F9F Cougar, F3H Demon, and the F4D Skyray. In the 1950s several refurbished Banshees were purchased by the Canadian government where they saw limited service on the HMCS Bonaventure until the early 1960s when they were finally retired from military service.



See also

Links to the articles on the War Thunder Wiki that you think will be useful for the reader, for example:

  • reference to the series of the aircraft;
  • links to approximate analogues of other nations and research trees.

External links

McDonnell Aircraft Corporation
Jet Fighters  F2H-2 · F3H-2
  F-4C Phantom II · F-4E Phantom II · F-4J Phantom II · F-4S Phantom II
  F-15A · F-15C MSIP II
Strike Aircraft  AV-8B Plus
Helicopters  AH-6M
Aircraft  ◄F-4F Early · ◄F-4F · ◄F-4F KWS LV · Phantom FG.1 · Phantom FGR.2 · F-4J(UK) Phantom II · F-4EJ Phantom II · F-4EJ ADTW · Kurnass · Kurnass 2000
  F-15J · F-15J(M) · Baz · Baz Meshupar
  ▄AV-8B Plus
Helicopters  Lahatut
  The McDonnell Aircraft Corporation merged with Douglas Aircraft Company in 1967 to form McDonnell Douglas Corporation. Later it was merged with The Boeing Company in 1997.
See Also  Mitsubishi Heavy Industries

USA jet aircraft
F-4  F-4C Phantom II · F-4E Phantom II · F-4J Phantom II · F-4S Phantom II
F-5  F-5A · F-5C · F-5E · F-20A
F-8  F8U-2 · F-8E
F-80  F-80A-5 · F-80C-10
F-84  F-84B-26 · F-84F · F-84G-21-RE
F-86  F-86A-5 · F-86F-25 · F-86F-2 · F-86F-35
F-89  F-89B · F-89D
F-100  F-100D
F-104  F-104A · F-104C
F-14  F-14A Early · F-14B
F-15  F-15A · F-15C MSIP II
F-16  F-16A · F-16A ADF · F-16C
F9F  F9F-2 · F9F-5 · F9F-8
Other  P-59A · F2H-2 · F3D-1 · F3H-2 · F4D-1 · F11F-1
  Strike Aircraft
FJ-4  FJ-4B · FJ-4B VMF-232
A-4  A-4B · A-4E Early
A-6  A-6E TRAM
A-7  A-7D · A-7E · A-7K
AV-8  AV-8A · AV-8C · AV-8B Plus
A-10  A-10A · A-10A Late
B-57  B-57A · B-57B
F-105  F-105D
F-111  F-111A