There were also F6F-5E night intruders and F6F-5P photoplanes. Britain received 925 F6F-5S.
It should be noted that by 1944, Britain had begun to use prefix letters to identify special-purpose variants of basic models. The 849 plain F6F-5s became Hellcat II, but the 76 F6F-5NS became Hellcat N.F.II ("N.F." for Night Fighters).
The last of 12,275 Hellcats, all built at Bethpage, was delivered on November 21, 1944. After the war, some F6F-5s were converted to F6F-5K drones, while others became F6F-5D drone controllers. In later years, F6F-5s were provided to Argentina, France, Paraguay and Uruguay for their naval air forces. The U.S. Navy used F6F-5Ns as night fighters until 1953, and others were used by the reserve training squadrons into 1956.
The Hellcat was the Navy's most numerous carrier-based fighter and it quickly proved its superiority over the previously invincible Mitsubishi A6M Zero. It was also the Navy's most combat-effective fighter and is officially credited with 4,947 air-to-air victories by carrier-based units, with a further 209 credited to land-based and Marine Corps units. Some of the British Hellcats were modified in England to carry British rocket launchers and became Hellcat F.R. II fighter-reconnaissance models, while a few became P.R. II photo-reconnaissance versions. Put into service in December 1943, the British Hellcats saw action over the English Channel in April 1944. Eleven squadrons served in Southeast Asia seas until the end of the war. The last Hellcats left British service in August 1946 and were returned to the U.S. with the other Lend-Lease models.
Shown above is an F6F-3 with the short-lived red-bordered insignia and the new (since February 1943) camouflage that used dark blue-gray for top surfaces and graduated to glossy white for undersurfaces. Below: an F6F-5N (with a 20mm cannon and a wing-tip radar pod) that shows off the glossy, overall sea-blue camouflage that was adopted for carrier-based fighters in February 1944 and later expanded to cover most U.S. Navy tactical planes and some support planes.
R-2800-27 engine, and was later used to test cannon armament.
The abandoned XF6F-2 designation was revived in 1944 when the last production F6F-3 was fitted with a turbo-supercharged R-2800 engine with a four-blade propeller.
Delivery of the 4,402 production F6F-3s from Bethpage began early in 1943. The Hellcats entered combat on August 31,1943, during an attack on Marcus Island in the Western Pacific. Later-production -3s had a rack under the right wing for up to 1,000 pounds of bombs.
Production variants of the F6F-3 were 150 F6F-3N night fighters with APS-6 radar in a pod built into the right wing; 18 similar F6F-3E night intruders with APS-4 radar; and several F6F-3Ps with long-focal-length cameras mounted vertically in the fuselage. All of these variants retained their six-gun wing armament and could also carry a 150-gallon drop tank under the fuselage. A total of 252 F6F-3s was provided to Britain's Fleet Air Arm
(FAA) under Lend-Lease. They were to have been designated "Gannet," but the British decided to use the American designation of "Hellcat I."
After the war, many F6F-3s were converted to unmanned, radio-controlled drones that were designated "F6F-3K" for use as anti-aircraft targets, for research into atom-bomb clouds and, in some cases, as guided bombs.
Although outwardly similar to the F6F-3, the 7,868 F6F-5s differed in that they had water-injected R-2800-10W engines, additional armor and revised engine cowlings and windshields. Racks for up to 1,000 pounds of bombs could now be carried under each wing, and late production articles could be fitted with racks for five 5-inch rockets under each wing. Deliveries began in April 1944.
Variants were as for the F6F-3, notably 1,189 F6F-5Ns with APS-6 radar pods. Some late -5Ns had their inboard .50-caliber machine guns replaced with 20mm cannon.
c rudder hinge rudder trailing edge cl elevator hinge cl rudder trim tab hinge c l hoisting sling \
tips of upper two blades of the propeller when the third blade is vertical on the bottom-
fuselage tricing support tube wings in folded position—» recognition light section light—i hydraulic system ^
the hydraulic system is comprised of the following components:
wing flap actuating cylinder restrictor gun charging cylinder wing lock cylinder wing folding timer check valve.
landfclg gear actuating cylinoer shuttle valve hydraulic fluid reservoir hydraulic pressure accumulator hydraulic fluid filter unloader valve engine-driven hydraulic pump intercooler flap actuating cylinder. engine cowl flap actuating cylinder.
restrictor. gun 'charging valve. landing gear dump valve. landing gear vent valve. landing gear position selector valve. engine cowl flap position selector valve. engine oil cooler position selector valve. wing flap posrtion selector valve. air pressure bottle. check relief manifold wing lock selector valve air pressure indicator. air bottle filling valve. hydraulic pressure indica tor.
hydraulic handpump engine oil cooler flap actuatinc cylinder. tail wheel actuating cylinder. hydraulic pressure relief valve.
intercooler selector valve.
hydraulic fluid filter.
hydraulic pressure snub-
hydraulic handpump selector control normal combat fighter c g wheels retracted i \
automatic pilot thf f6f-5 is equipped with a type gr-l automatic pilot the auto-pilot is self-synchronous it may be engaged in normal flight attitude and will take over and maintain the airplane until it is changed by the automatic flight controller the con troller is manually operated by the pilot. the following is the automatic pilot components. transfer valves. rudder servo cylinder-bank and climb gyro oontrol auto- pilot controller directional gyro control air filter. on-off control unit elevator servo cylinder. hydraulic filter stabilizer unit aileron servo cylinder. relay unit
3° incidence-thrust line
35° chord line i i__¿-recognition lights
.t *--chord linf center section slotted flap so® maximum deflect 101^
lg retracted de-icer equipment the windshield is de-iced by anti-icer fluid sprayed on it by manual operation of the spray control valve. the anti-icer fluid tank is one gallon in capacity. the is located forward of wm firewall. hh level ground static load line cl shock strut extended
194(16-2")—span with wings folded cl shock strut retracted 10 5 x44 retractable tail wheel retractable arresting hook static load 3-point ground line
fuselage length 406(33-10")
height scale rolling radius static load 13 62 contour wing station 29 75" '
contour wing station 75-1
ground line tires flat and shock struts fully compressed ground line tires and shock struts fully extended ~--
wing folding f9|
the wings are spread or hp ually folded on the groumj and automatically locked^h; position the wings are uw ed in the spread position,* and unlocked before foltfl ing, by hydraullcally ope® ated locking pins contrcw ed from the cockpit. the ■ two position hydraulic control lever is located in uk cockpit wing safety loc» pins are controled from Til cockpit. these pins are us a to safety the main locking! pins after the outer pan-1 els are- moved to the m spread position and the \f main locking pins are ful-fc ly home. these safety loc^
pins, when engaged, prevent the locking pins from falling out, regardless of a loss of hydraulic pressure. visual indicators on each wing also show if the locking safety pins are property engaged.
bullet resistant windshield panel wings manually folded to this position
13-1" diameter 3-8lade hamilton standard hydromatic automatically adjustable propeller in the constant speed range propeller arc machine gun orifice axis of rotation for wing folding--
horizontal stabilizer reference plane navigation light^^-
horizontal wing reference plane
7. 5°dihe dr al r LANDING SEAR CONTROL->
the main and tail wheels are retracted and extended by double acting hydraulic cylinders. the operating pressure is supplied by an engine-driven hydraulic pump or hand pump the action of the cylinders is controled by a two position selector valve handle located on the left hand instrument panel.
landing gear lock the mechanical lock between the landing gear control lever and the left hand shock strut prevents inadvertant landing gear retraction when the airplane is on the ground. the control lever is inoperative until the airplane is airborne.
arresting hook control' the arresting hook is extend-and retracted electrically the extension of the arresting hook turns on the approach light the operation of the arresting hook is controled by an electric switch on the electrical distribution panel in the cockpit pitot tube center section approach light wings in spread position wheel axle c.l
32 x8 main wheels canted 3* inward ground line static load propeller groundclearance 732 shock struts and wheels fully extended the us navy model f6f-5 was produced in quantity in day and night fighter versions during world war two the night fighter version was equipped with a radar scope and a radar altimeter (model f6f-5nv the first combat operational airplane was model f6f-3
ron gerdes, a a hs grumman aircraft engineering corporation william winter, ed1t0 r, m an.
i32"(ir-0m) wheel tread cockpit heating the cockpit heating and ventilation system consists of a hot air combustion type heater. it is electrically operated span scale oil dilution system for cold weather operation, an electrically energized engine oil dilution system is provided.
the oildilution control valve and oildiverter valve electric switch are located on the fuel control panel.
the hydraulic system is operated by an engine - driven hydraulic pump located in the engine accessory compart-ment. various mechanical functions are controled by man ual operation of position selector valves. the normal hydraulic operational pressure is 1500 pounds ps. i. four gallons of fluid are contained in the system. an auxiliary hand pump is usedto energize the system in case of engine pump fail ur e . specification an - vv-o-366 hydraulic fluid is used.
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