Grumman F6F Hellcat

The Grumman F6F Hellcat is an American carrier-based fighter aircraft of World War II.

Variants

XF6F prototypes

XF6F-1

First prototype, powered by a two-stage 1,600 hp (1,193 kW) Wright R-2600-10 Cyclone 14 radial piston engine.

XF6F-2

The first XF6F-1 prototype revised and fitted with a turbocharged Wright R-2600-16 Cyclone radial piston engine. R-2600 replaced by turbocharged R-2800-21.

XF6F-3

Second prototype fitted with a two-stage supercharged 2,000 hp (1,491 kW) Pratt & Whitney R-2800-10 Double Wasp radial piston engine.

XF6F-4

One F6F-3 fitted with a two-speed turbocharged 2,100 hp (1,566 kW) Pratt & Whitney R-2800-27 Double Wasp radial piston engine.

XF6F-6

Two F6F-5s that were fitted with the 2,100 hp (1,566 kW) Pratt & Whitney R-2800-18W radial piston engine, and four-bladed propellers.

Series production

F6F-3

(British designation Gannet F. Mk. I, and then later, renamed Hellcat F. Mk. I, January 1944)

Single-seat fighter, fighter-bomber aircraft, powered by a 2,000 hp (1,491 kW) Pratt & Whitney R-2800-10 Double Wasp radial piston engine.

F6F-3E

Night fighter version, equipped with an AN/APS-4 radar in a fairing on the starboard outer wing.

F6F-3N

Another night fighter version, equipped with a newer AN/APS-6 radar in a fairing on the starboard outer wing.

F6F-5 Hellcat (British Hellcat F. Mk. II)

Improved version, with a redesigned engine cowling, a new windscreen structure with an integral bulletproof windscreen, new ailerons and strengthened tail surfaces; powered by a 2,200 hp (1,641 kW) Pratt & Whitney R-2800-10W (-W denotes Water Injection) radial piston engine.

F6F-5K Hellcat

A number of F6F-5s and F6F-5Ns were converted into radio-controlled target drones.

F6F-5N Hellcat (British Hellcat N.F. Mk II)

Night fighter version, fitted with an AN/APS-6 radar.

Some were armed with two 20 mm (0.79 in) AN/M2 cannon in the inner wing bays and four 0.50 in (12.7 mm) M2 Browning machine guns in the outer.

F6F-5P Hellcat

Small numbers of F6F-5s were converted into photo-reconnaissance aircraft, with the camera equipment being fitted in the rear fuselage.

Hellcat FR. Mk. II

This designation was given to British Hellcats fitted with camera equipment.

FV-1

Proposed designation for Hellcats to be built by Canadian Vickers; cancelled before any built.

Specifications

Crew

1

Length

33 ft 7 in (10.24 m)

Wingspan

42 ft 10 in (13.06 m)

Height

13 ft 1 in (3.99 m)

Wing area

334 sq ft (31.0 m2)

Aspect ratio

5.5

Airfoil

Root

NACA 23015.6

Tip

NACA 23009

Empty weight

9,238 lb (4,190 kg)

Gross weight

12,598 lb (5,714 kg)

Max take-off weight

15,415 lb (6,992 kg)

Fuel capacity

250 US gal (208 imp gal; 946 l) internal;

Up to 3 × 150 US gal (125 imp gal; 568 l) external drop tanks

Zero-lift drag coefficient

0.0211

Drag area

7.05 sq ft (0.655 m2)

Powerplant

1 × Pratt & Whitney R-2800-10W Double Wasp 18-cylinder air-cooled radial piston engine, 2,200 hp (1,600 kW) with a two-speed two-stage supercharger and water injection

Propellers

3-bladed Hamilton Standard, 13 ft 1 in (3.99 m) diameter constant-speed propeller

Performance

Maximum speed

391 mph (629 km/h, 340 kn)

Stall speed

84 mph (135 km/h, 73 kn)

Combat range

945 mi (1,521 km, 821 nmi)

Ferry range

1,530 mi (2,460 km, 1,330 nmi)

Service ceiling

37,300 ft (11,400 m)

Rate of climb

2,600 ft/min (13 m/s)

Time to altitude

20,000 ft (6,096 m) in 7 minutes 42 seconds

Lift-to-drag

12.2

Wing loading

37.7 lb/sq ft (184 kg/m2)

Power/mass

0.16 hp/lb (0.26 kW/kg)

Take-off run

799 ft (244 m)

Armament

Guns

6× 0.50 in (12.7 mm) M2 Browning machine guns, with 400 rounds per gun,

(All F6F-3, and most F6F-5)

Or

2 × 0.79 in (20 mm) AN/M2 cannon, with 225 rounds per gun and 4 × 0.50 in (12.7 mm) Browning machine guns with 400 rounds per gun

Rockets

6 × 5 in (127 mm) HVARs

Or

2 × 11+3⁄4 in (298 mm) Tiny Tim unguided rockets

Bombs

Up to 4,000 lb (1,800 kg) full load, including:

Bombs or Torpedoes

(Fuselage mounted on centerline rack)

1 × 2,000 lb (910 kg) bomb

Or

1 × Mk.13-3 torpedo

Underwing bombs

(F6F-5 had two additional weapons racks either side of fuselage on wing centre-section)

2 × 1,000 lb (450 kg)

Or

4 × 500 lb (230 kg)

8 × 250 lb (110 kg).

 

 

 

 

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