Starfury Resource Page Title Graphic

"Ugly but Well Hung". Not a bad motto for one of sci-fi TV's most recognizable ships, the SA-23 Starfury from Babylon 5. Small, agile, and armed to the teeth, they were created with a realistic eye towards the demands of space combat. This sets them apart from the "space fantasy" craft like (TOS) Galactica's Vipers or Star Wars' X-Wings. This page was created primarily for scale modelers looking for reference to make their Starfury kit as accurate as possible. However, many Babylon 5 and general sci-fi fans will find the content of interest.

Operational History

By the mid-twentythird century, the Mitchell-Hyundyne SA-23E Starfury forms the backbone of the Earth Alliance fighter strength. In service for more than a decade, the Starfury has proven itself in combat from one end of the galaxy to the other, from the Earth-Minbari War through the Shadow War. These fighters are carried on all Earth Alliance capital ships, such as the Hyperion-, Nova, and Omega-classes, and are the primary defensive protection for space installations such as the Babylon 5 station.

361st TFS patch

The Starfury is a one-man fighter designed specifically for space combat. Its four multi-nozzle engines and variable-geometry thrust vanes make it incredibly agile, able to maneuver in ways no craft designed for atmospheric flight can match. The pilot stands in the cockpit in order to better withstand the massive acceleration forces encountered in space combat. Since blood is never drained from the brain in high-G maneuvers, the pilots can remain concious and effectively fight their craft. The cockpit assembly can be jettisoned as a life boat in emergencies.

The standard Starfury is armed with four 20MW Plasma Projection Guns (PPG's), and can also carry a variety of missiles and/or sensors on external hardpoints. Four fuel cells, one on the trailing edge of each 'wing', store a low-temperature compressed solid propellent (DBM) which powers the engines. Major Starfury variants include a two-place heavy fighter and a special-operations craft, used exclusively by the Psi Corps, which incorporates advanced sensor and stealth technologies.

Colors and Markings

The standard 'Fury is all-over medium gray, with a low-viz, matte dark blue/grey- and-pale yellow Earth Alliance flash on the upper and lower right 'wings'. Individual spacecraft I.D. numbers are usually seen on the upper left wing. However, the factory-fresh image is often quickly lost in the "field".

In keeping with the great old tradition of individualizing their mounts, many Starfury crews have treated the space on the upper wing behind the canopy as an artist's canvas. These decorations may reflect the personality of the crew, though sometimes whole squadrons adopt a given visual scheme. This is clearly seen in specialized units such as the Presidental Escort Wing or the Psi Corps' Black Omega squadron.

Other specialized markings often adorn craft. One of the most common are Battle Badges. These triangular markings indicate significant conflicts in which the pilot participated. The most respected of these badges is the "L" marking, indicating the pilot is a veteran of "The Line" - humanity's last defense during the Earth-Minbari War.

Starfury Profiles

Command Staff | Other B5 Pilots | Other Earth Alliance Starfuries


Captain John Sheridan's "Flying Tiger" is certainly one of the boldest, most colorful wing art designs seen on the show's spacecraft. As with current US military practice, the commander is not the exclusive pilot of his craft. While all/most of Sheridan's missions are flown using this bird, it is often seen flying in combat formations while Sheridan remains on the station. The craft's "Earth Alliance" markings are slightly atypical, in that it carries an extra EA flash on the upper surface of the lower, starboard "wing".

  • A render test shot of Sheriden's Flying Tiger. Very close, clear, and highly detailed. The extra EA flash is not seen in this shot.
  • A screen capture from "Knives", showing the extra EA insignia.
  • Rear view - a screen capture from "Fall of Night".
  • Sheridan's helmet, showing the Flying Tiger logo.

"Severed Dreams"
"Fall of Night"
"All Alone in the Night"
Sheriden's Tiger


Commander Susan Ivanova's Starfury features a scheme reflecting her Russian heritage. A variation on this image is also seen on her helmet. Seen in many episodes, the original fighter (see the first image, below) was destroyed in "Severed Dreams", when it spun out of control, smashing into the side of an Earth Alliance destroyer. Her replacement ship (second image, below) appears within 1-6 months. It bears the same personal markings, but relinquishes the EA flashes for the "Shield and Sword" badge of the independent B-5. It is seen only in "Thirdspace", where it armed with six underwing missile racks.


"Severed Dreams"
"Signs and Portents"
Ivanova's Ride
Ivanova's Second Fighter


Piloted by Babylon 5's first commander, Jeffery Sinclair, this craft is a good example of customized markings. They reflect the Sinclair family history, a tradition of flying fighters that stretches all the way back to the Battle of Britain in WWII. The bold chevron's are the most personal component, representing the markings his father's fighter wore in the Dilgar war. The port 'wing' carries two other notable markings: a service badge for Sinclair's participation at The Line and a set of "invasion stripes", which commemorate the first Sinclair fighter pilot. See also Sinclair's Line fighter.

  • Sinclair's 'Fury being lowered into launch position in the Cobra Bays.
  • Top view of Sinclair's 'Fury thrusting away from B-5.
  • Sinclair's helmet from The Line. Barely discernible is his squadron - "Death's Hands" -- logo.
  • Battling Raiders.
  • Sinclair's SA-43A from the Line.

"Severed Dreams"
"And the Sky Full of Stars" (Line fighter)
"Midnight on the Firing Line"
"The Gathering"
Sinclair's Fighter


Security Chief Michael Garibaldi flew at least three different 'Furies over the course of the series. It seems clear that this is the one intended to be "Garibaldi's Bird", as the wing art matches the theme on his space suit helmet. This is also the first Starfury we ever see Garibaldi fly. The port wing carries an ID code, which was devilishly hard to determine. This image is now completely accurate. When captured in "Za'h'Dum" he is flying an undecorated fighter.

  • Top view of Garibaldi exploring a gutted Earth transport, from 'Midnight'.
  • Another view for the top and rear. The fighter's wing ID code is barely legible.
  • One more view from that same scene.
  • Garibaldi's helmet design.

"Matters of Honor"
"Spider in the Web"
"Signs and Portents"
"Midnight on the Firing Line"
Garibaldi's Bird


This is the third of the three Starfuries we see Garibaldi fly over the course of the series. This new ship sports a characiture of Daffy Duck on the starboard side of the fuselage between the wings. How could it be any more Garibaldi's than that?


"No Compromises"
Tiger Tiger


This is the mount of Garibaldi's second-in-command and eventual successor, Zack Allen. As far as we know, it's only seen - fleetingly - in "Thirdspace". The wingart was designed by Babylon 5's Visual Effects Art Director, Tim Earls. Of note, it is one of the few with "correctd"b Earth Alliance flash on the wings - it has the top of the "A".


[Miss Deed]


Captain Lochley's 'Pheonix' markings undoubtedly reflect her 'rebirith' from the ashes of her early life (see "Day of the Dead"). There is no indication of a serial number, at least on the wings. This ship is only seen twice, once in Season 5 and once in the aborted first season of "Crusade".


"Strange Relations"
"Each Night I Dream of Home" (Crusade)

More Starfury Profiles

This page was last updated 27 July 2005. There are areas we acknowledge as incomplete, such as the SIGHTINGS category on each Starfury. If you have any information that will help make this page be more accurate and comprehensive, contact us. With your help, we can make this page all it can and should be. Special thanks to Tim Earls, Scott MacIntyre and Paul Hearberlin for their kind assistance.

Copyright Notes:
These pages are intended strictly for personal use of those who appreciate the hard work, intelligence, artistry, and effort that go into making real and fictional spacecraft. This site is not intended to infringe on the intellectual properties of any copyright holders. Please address concerns, questions, and any notices we may have inadvertently missed to the site administration for resolution.

BABYLON 5, the Babylon 5 logo, all photos and images from the series are copyright and trademark 1992-1997, PTEN Consortium. This page made possible by Starship Modeler - copyright 1998-2003.

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