The Right Stuff & Chuck Yeager’s NF-104 incident

NF-104 Straight up to space
NF-104 Straight up to space
NF-104 incident_Yeager in pressure suit

General Yeager wrote the NF-104 part in The Right Stuff. Tom Wolfe wasn’t quite getting it from their interview.

The production team asked General Yeager to re-enact his NF-104 flat spin scene.

He had choice words for them which ended in an emphatic “No! Anyone who tries will kill themselves.” Then Col Yeager felt he got off easy with his face burns and over 100 stitches. He not only lived, he got back on flying status and without the usual terrible burn scars.

NF-104 incident_Page_ NF-104 smashed on the ground Yeager

Unfortunately, he was right. The production team got another pilot to re-enact the NF-104 flying and that pilot augured in. He wasn’t so lucky.