The Personal Fighter Jet
Designed for corporate CEOs, lawyers, physicians and other professionals who want cross-country,
aerobatic and fighter-style performance in a single aircraft, this kit-built executive jet sets a new
standard for performance, appearance and comfort in a in kit plane.
Brothers Dan and Scott Hanchette founded the ViperFan project in 1996 as piston engine, propeller driven pusher. As the light micro-jet market began to spool-up, the Hanchette brothers chose turbojet propulsion instead, replacing the original Continental flat-6 with a Turbomeca Marboré engine. In traditional fighter-jet form, it is a swept wing, tandem seat fuselage with outboard intakes and a retractable tricycle undercarriage. Unlike its military counterpart, it is constructed of composite materials and de-weaponized for civilian use.
The original Viperjet prototype took to the air in October 1999, making it's public debut at the EAA AirVenture Oshkosh Airshow in the year 2000, but the high fuel consumption of the Turbomeca engine coupled with a lack of power conducive to the airframe's capability and appearance resulted in an engine swap to the General Electric T58 turboshaft engine with the power turbine removed; turning it into a turbojet. While it produced better results, it did not meet the requirements of the Hanchette brothers. Eventually, they selected the General Electric J85. This turbojet engine produced much greater thrust than previous powerplants.