Grumman F8F Bearcat

The Grumman F8F Bearcat is an American single-engine carrier-based fighter aircraft introduced in late World War II.

It served during the mid-20th century in the United States Navy, the United States Marine Corps, and the air forces of other nations.

It was Grumman Aircraft’s last piston engine fighter aircraft.

Variants

XF8F-1

Prototype aircraft, two built.

F8F-1 Bearcat

Single-seat fighter aircraft, equipped with folding wings, a retractable tail wheel, self-sealing fuel tanks, a very small dorsal fin, powered by a 2,100 hp (1,600 kW) Pratt & Whitney R-2800-34W Double Wasp radial piston engine, armed with four 0.50 in (12.7 mm) machine guns.

F8F-1B Bearcat

Single-seat fighter version, armed with four AN/M3 20 mm cannons.

F8F-1C Bearcat

Originally designated F8F-1C, redesignated as F8F-1B.

F8F-1D

F8F-1s converted into drone control aircraft.

F8F-1(D)B Bearcat

Unofficial designation for export version for France and Thailand.

F8F-1E Bearcat

F8F-1 night-fighter prototype carrying APS-4 radar.

XF8F-1N

F8F-1 conversion into night fighter prototypes.

F8F-1N Bearcat

Night fighter version, equipped with an APS-19 radar.

F8F-1P Bearcat

F8F-1 conversion photo reconnaissance conversion.

F3M-1 Bearcat

Planned designation for F8F aircraft constructed by General Motors.

F4W-1 Bearcat

Planned designation for F8F aircraft constructed by Canadian Car and Foundry.

XF8F-2

F8F-1 conversion with engine upgrade, revised engine cowling, taller tail.

F8F-2 Bearcat

Improved version, equipped with a redesigned engine cowling, taller fin and rudder, armed with four 20 mm cannons, powered by a Pratt & Whitney R-2800-30W radial piston engine.

F8F-2D

F8F-2s converted into drone control aircraft.

F8F-2N Bearcat

Night-fighter version, equipped with an APS-19 radar.

F8F-2P Bearcat

Photo-reconnaissance version, fitted with camera equipment, armed with two 20 mm (0.79 in) cannons.

Specifications

Crew

1

Length

28 ft 3 in (8.61 m)

Wingspan

35 ft 10 in (10.92 m)

Height

13 ft 10 in (4.22 m)

Wing area

244 sq ft (22.7 m2)

Aspect ratio

5.02

Airfoil

Root

NACA 23018

Tip

NACA 23009

Empty weight

7,650 lb (3,470 kg)

Max take-off weight

13,460 lb (6,105 kg)

Powerplant

1 × Pratt & Whitney R-2800-30W Double Wasp 18-cylinder air-cooled radial piston engine, 2,250 hp (1,680 kW)

Propellers

4-bladed constant-speed propeller

Performance

Maximum speed

455 mph (732 km/h, 395 kn)

Range

1,105 mi (1,778 km, 960 nmi)

Service ceiling

40,800 ft (12,400 m)

Rate of climb

4,465 ft/min (22.68 m/s)

Wing loading

42 lb/sq ft (210 kg/m2)

Power/mass

0.22 hp/lb (0.36 kW/kg)

Armament

Guns

4 × 20 mm (.79 in) AN/M3 cannon

Rockets

4 × 5 in (127 mm) HVAR unguided rockets

Bombs

1,000 lb (454 kg) bombs.

 

 

 

 

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