Jaguar E-Variety 4-2 in front of Samuel’s Jaguar Motors LTD

Jaguar E-Variety 4-2 in front of Samuel’s Jaguar Motors LTD

Some cool aluminum prototype machining images:

Jaguar E-Type 4-2 in front of Samuel’s Jaguar Motors LTD
aluminum prototype machining
Image by Chris Devers
Quoting from Wikipedia: Jaguar E-Type:

• • • • •

The Jaguar E-Type (UK) or XK-E (US) is a British automobile manufactured by Jaguar between 1961 and 1974. Its combination of good looks, high performance, and competitive pricing established the marque as an icon of 1960s motoring. A great success for Jaguar, over seventy thousand E-Types were sold during its lifespan.

In March 2008, the Jaguar E-Type ranked first in Daily Telegraph list of the "100 most beautiful cars" of all time.[2] In 2004, Sports Car International magazine placed the E-Type at number one on their list of Top Sports Cars of the 1960s.

Contents

1 Overview
2 Concept versions
•• 2.1 E1A (1957)
•• 2.2 E2A (1960)
3 Production versions
•• 3.1 Series 1 (1961-1968)
•• 3.2 Series 2 (1969-1971)
•• 3.3 Series 3 (1971-1975)
4 Limited edtions
•• 4.1 Low Drag Coupé (1962)
•• 4.2 Lightweight E-Type (1963-1964)
5 Motor Sport
6 See also
7 References
8 External links

Overview

The E-Type was initially designed and shown to the public as a grand tourer in two-seater coupé form (FHC or Fixed Head Coupé) and as convertible (OTS or Open Two Seater). The 2+2 version with a lengthened wheelbase was released several years later.

On its release Enzo Ferrari called it "The most beautiful car ever made".

The model was made in three distinct versions which are now generally referred to as "Series 1", "Series 2" and "Series 3". A transitional series between Series 1 and Series 2 is known unofficially as "Series 1½".

In addition, several limited-edition variants were produced:

• The "’Lightweight’ E-Type" which was apparently intended as a sort of follow-up to the D-Type. Jaguar planned to produce 18 units but ultimately only a dozen were reportedly built. Of those, one is known to have been destroyed and two others have been converted to coupé form. These are exceedingly rare and sought after by collectors.
• The "Low Drag Coupé" was a one-off technical exercise which was ultimately sold to a Jaguar racing driver. It is presently believed to be part of the private collection of the current Viscount Cowdray.

Concept versions

E1A (1957)

After their success at LeMans 24 hr through the 1950s Jaguars defunct racing department were given the brief to use D-Type style construction to build a road going sports car, replacing the XK150.

It is suspected that the first prototype (E1A) was given the code based on: (E): The proposed production name E-Type (1): First Prototype (A): Aluminium construction (Production models used steel bodies)

The car featured a monocoque design, Jaguar’s fully independent rear suspension and the well proved "XK" engine.

The car was used solely for factory testings and was never formally released to the public. The car was eventually scrapped by the factory

E2A (1960)

Jaguar’s second E-Type concept was E2A which unlike E1A was constructed from a steel chassis and used a aluminium body. This car was completed as a race car as it was thought by Jaguar at the time it would provide a better testing ground.

E2A used a 3 litre version of the XK engine with a Lucas fuel injection system.

After retiring from the LeMans 24 hr the car was shipped to America to be used for racing by Jaguar privateer Briggs Cunningham.

In 1961 the car returned to Jaguar in England to be used as a testing mule.

Ownership of E2A passed to Roger Woodley (Jaguars customer competition car manager) who took possession on the basis the car not be used for racing. E2A had been scheduled to be scrapped.

Roger’s wife Penny Griffiths owned E2A until 2008 when it was offered for sale at Bonham’s Quail Auction. Sale price was US.5 million

Production versions

Series 1 (1961-1968)

Series I

• Production
1961–1968[3] [4]

Body style(s)
2-door coupe
2-door 2+2 coupe
2-door convertible

Engine(s)
3.8 L XK I6
4.2 L XK I6

Wheelbase
96.0 in (2438 mm) (FHC / OTS)
105.0 in (2667 mm) (2+2) [5]

• Length
175.3125 in (4453 mm) (FHC / OTS)
184.4375 in (4685 mm) (2+2) [5]

• Width
65.25 in (1657 mm) (all) [5]

• Height
48.125 in (1222 mm) (FHC)
50.125 in (1273 mm) (2+2)
46.5 in (1181 mm) (OTS)[5]

Curb weight
2,900 lb (1,315 kg) (FHC)
2,770 lb (1,256 kg) (OTS)
3,090 lb (1,402 kg) (2+2) [6]

• Fuel capacity
63.64 L (16.8 US gal; 14.0 imp gal)[5]

The Series 1 was introduced, initially for export only, in March 1961. The domestic market launch came four months later in July 1961.[7] The cars at this time used the triple SU carburetted 3.8 litre 6-cylinder Jaguar XK6 engine from the XK150S. The first 500 cars built had flat floors and external hood (bonnet) latches. These cars are rare and more valuable. After that, the floors were dished to provide more leg room and the twin hood latches moved to inside the car. The 3.8 litre engine was increased to 4.2 litres in October 1964.[7]

All E-Types featured independent coil spring rear suspension with torsion bar front ends, and four wheel disc brakes, in-board at the rear, all were power-assisted. Jaguar was one of the first auto manufacturers to equip cars with disc brakes as standard from the XK150 in 1958. The Series 1 can be recognised by glass covered headlights (up to 1967), small "mouth" opening at the front, signal lights and tail-lights above bumpers and exhaust tips under the licence plate in the rear.

3.8 litre cars have leather-upholstered bucket seats, an aluminium-trimmed centre instrument panel and console (changed to vinyl and leather in 1963), and a Moss 4-speed gearbox that lacks synchromesh for 1st gear ("Moss box"). 4.2 litre cars have more comfortable seats, improved brakes and electrical systems, and an all-synchromesh 4-speed gearbox. 4.2 litre cars also have a badge on the boot proclaiming "Jaguar 4.2 Litre E-Type" (3.8 cars have a simple "Jaguar" badge). Optional extras included chrome spoked wheels and a detachable hard top for the OTS.

An original E-Type hard top is very rare, and finding one intact with all the chrome, not to mention original paint in decent condition, is rather difficult. For those who want a hardtop and aren’t fussy over whether or not it is an original from Jaguar, several third parties have recreated the hardtop to almost exact specifications. The cost ranges anywhere from double to triple the cost of a canvas/vinyl soft top.

A 2+2 version of the coupé was added in 1966. The 2+2 offered the option of an automatic transmission. The body is 9 in (229 mm) longer and the roof angles are different with a more vertical windscreen. The roadster remained a strict two-seater.

There was a transitional series of cars built in 1967-68, unofficially called "Series 1½", which are externally similar to Series 1 cars. Due to American pressure the new features were open headlights, different switches, and some de-tuning (with a downgrade of twin Zenith-Stromberg carbs from the original triple SU carbs) for US models. Some Series 1½ cars also have twin cooling fans and adjustable seat backs. Series 2 features were gradually introduced into the Series 1, creating the unofficial Series 1½ cars, but always with the Series 1 body style.

Less widely known, there was also right at the end of Series 1 production and prior to the transitional "Series 1½" referred to above, a very small number of Series 1 cars produced with open headlights.[8] These are sometimes referred to as "Series 1¼" cars.[9] Production dates on these machines vary but in right hand drive form production has been verified as late as March 1968.[10] It is thought that the low number of these cars produced relative to the other Series make them amongst the rarest of all production E Types.

An open 3.8 litre car, actually the first such production car to be completed, was tested by the British magazine The Motor in 1961 and had a top speed of 149.1 mph (240.0 km/h) and could accelerate from 0-60 mph (97 km/h) in 7.1 seconds. A fuel consumption of 21.3 miles per imperial gallon (13.3 L/100 km; 17.7 mpg-US) was recorded. The test car cost £2097 including taxes.[11]

Production numbers from Graham[12]:

• 15,490 3.8s
• 17,320 4.2s
• 10,930 2+2s

Production numbers from xkedata.com[13]: [omitted — Flickr doesn’t allow tables]

Series 2 (1969-1971)

Series II

• Production
1969–1971[3] [4]

Body style(s)
2-door coupe
2-door 2+2 coupe
2-door convertible

Engine(s)
4.2 L XK I6

Curb weight
3,018 lb (1,369 kg) (FHC)
2,750 lb (1,247 kg) (OTS)
3,090 lb (1,402 kg) (2+2) [6]

Open headlights without glass covers, a wrap-around rear bumper, re-positioned and larger front indicators and taillights below the bumpers, better cooling aided by an enlarged "mouth" and twin electric fans, and uprated brakes are hallmarks of Series 2 cars. De-tuned in US, but still with triple SUs in the UK, the engine is easily identified visually by the change from smooth polished cam covers to a more industrial ‘ribbed’ appearance. Late Series 1½ cars also had ribbed cam covers. The interior and dashboard were also redesigned, with rocker switches that met U.S health and safety regulations being substituted for toggle switches. The dashboard switches also lost their symmetrical layout. New seats were fitted, which purists claim lacked the style of the originals but were certainly more comfortable. Air conditioning and power steering were available as factory options.

Production according to Graham[12] is 13,490 of all types.

Series 2 production numbers from xkedata.com[13]: [omitted — Flickr doesn’t allow tables]

Official delivery numbers by market and year are listed in Porter[3] but no summary totals are given.

Series 3 (1971-1975)

Series III

• Production
1971–1975

Body style(s)
2-door 2+2 coupe
2-door convertible

Engine(s)
5.3 L Jaguar V12

Wheelbase
105 in (2667 mm) (both)[6]

• Length
184.4 in (4684 mm) (2+2)
184.5 in (4686 mm) (OTS)[6]

• Width
66.0 in (1676 mm) (2+2)
66.1 in (1679 mm) (OTS)[6]

• Height
48.9 in (1242 mm) (2+2)
48.1 in (1222 mm) (OTS)[6]

Curb weight
3,361 lb (1,525 kg) (2+2)
3,380 lb (1,533 kg) (OTS)[6]

• Fuel capacity
82 L (21.7 US gal; 18.0 imp gal)[14]

A new 5.3 L 12-cylinder Jaguar V12 engine was introduced, with uprated brakes and standard power steering. The short wheelbase FHC body style was discontinued and the V12 was available only as a convertible and 2+2 coupé. The convertible used the longer-wheelbase 2+2 floorplan. It is easily identifiable by the large cross-slatted front grille, flared wheel arches and a badge on the rear that proclaims it to be a V12. There were also a very limited number of 4.2 litre six-cylinder Series 3 E-Types built. These were featured in the initial sales literature. It is believed these are the rarest of all E-Types of any remaining.

In 2008 a British classic car enthusiast assembled what is surely the last ever E-Type from parts bought from the end-of-production surplus in 1974.[15]

Graham[12] lists production at 15,290.

Series 3 production numbers from xkedata.com[13]: [omitted — Flickr doesn’t allow tables]

Limited edtions

Two limited production E-Type variants were made as test beds, the Low Drag Coupe and Lightweight E-Type, both of which were raced:

Low Drag Coupé (1962)

Shortly after the introduction of the E-Type, Jaguar management wanted to investigate the possibility of building a car more in the spirit of the D-Type racer from which elements of the E-Type’s styling and design were derived. One car was built to test the concept designed as a coupé as its monocoque design could only be made rigid enough for racing by using the "stressed skin" principle. Previous Jaguar racers were built as open-top cars because they were based on ladder frame designs with independent chassis and bodies. Unlike the steel production E-Types the LDC used lightweight aluminium. Sayer retained the original tub with lighter outer panels riveted and glued to it. The front steel sub frame remained intact, the windshield was given a more pronounced slope and the rear hatch welded shut. Rear brake cooling ducts appeared next to the rear windows,and the interior trim was discarded, with only insulation around the transmission tunnel. With the exception of the windscreen, all cockpit glass was plexi. A tuned version of Jaguar’s 3.8 litre engine with a wide angle cylinder-head design tested on the D-Type racers was used. Air management became a major problem and, although much sexier looking and certainly faster than a production E-Type, the car was never competitive: the faster it went, the more it wanted to do what its design dictated: take off.

The one and only test bed car was completed in summer of 1962 but was sold a year later to Jaguar racing driver Dick Protheroe who raced it extensively and eventually sold it. Since then it has passed through the hands of several collectors on both sides of the Atlantic and now is believed to reside in the private collection of the current Viscount Cowdray.

Lightweight E-Type (1963-1964)

In some ways, this was an evolution of the Low Drag Coupé. It made extensive use of aluminium alloy in the body panels and other components. However, with at least one exception, it remained an open-top car in the spirit of the D-Type to which this car is a more direct successor than the production E-Type which is more of a GT than a sports car. The cars used a tuned version of the production 3.8 litre Jaguar engine with 300 bhp (224 kW) output rather than the 265 bhp (198 kW) produced by the "ordinary" version. At least one car is known to have been fitted with fuel-injection.

The cars were entered in various races but, unlike the C-Type and D-Type racing cars, they did not win at Le Mans or Sebring.

Motor Sport

Bob Jane won the 1963 Australian GT Championship at the wheel of an E-Type.

The Jaguar E-Type was very successful in SCCA Production sports car racing with Group44 and Bob Tullius taking the B-Production championship with a Series-3 V12 racer in 1975. A few years later, Gran-Turismo Jaguar from Cleveland Ohio campaigned a 4.2 L 6 cylinder FHC racer in SCCA production series and in 1980, won the National Championship in the SCCA C-Production Class defeating a fully funded factory Nissan Z-car team with Paul Newman.

See also

Jaguar XK150 – predecessor to the E-Type
Jaguar XJS – successor to the E-Type
Jaguar XK8 – The E-Type’s current and spiritual successor
Guyson E12 – a rebodied series III built by William Towns

References

^ Loughborough graduate and designer of E Type Jaguar honoured
^ 100 most beautiful cars
• ^ a b cPorter, Philip (2006). Jaguar E-type, the definitive history. p. 443. ISBN 0-85429-580-1.
• ^ a b"’69 Series 2 Jaguar E Types", Autocar, October 24, 1968
• ^ a b c d eThe Complete Official Jaguar "E". Cambridge: Robert Bentley. 1974. p. 12. ISBN 0-8376-0136-3.
• ^ a b c d e f g"Jaguar E-Type Specifications". http://www.web-cars.com/e-type/specifications.php. Retrieved 29 August 2009.
• ^ a b"Buying secondhand E-type Jaguar". Autocar 141 (nbr4042): pages 50–52. 6 April 1974.
^ See Jaguar Clubs of North America concourse information at: [1] and more specifically the actual Series 1½ concourse guide at [2]
^ Ibid.
^ Compare right hand drive VIN numbers given in JCNA concours guide referred to above with production dates for right hand drive cars as reflected in the XKEdata database at [3]
^"The Jaguar E-type". The Motor. March 22, 1961.
• ^ a b cRobson, Graham (2006). A–Z British Cars 1945–1980. Devon, UK: Herridge & Sons. ISBN 0-9541063-9-3.
• ^ a b chttp://www.xkedata.com/stats/. http://www.xkedata.com/stats/. Retrieved 29 August 2009.
^Daily Express Motor Show Review 1975 Cars: Page 24 (Jaguar E V12). October 1974.
^ jalopnik.com/5101872/british-man-cobbles-together-last-ja…

Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center: South hangar panorama, including stunt planes hanging over the Concorde, among others
aluminum prototype machining
Image by Chris Devers
Quoting Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum | Loudenslager Laser 200
"Beautiful Obsession"
:

With the Laser 200, Leo Loudenslager won an unprecedented seven U.S. National Aerobatic Championship titles between 1975 and ’82, as well as the 1980 World Champion title. The airplane originated as a Stephens Akro, a sleed aeroback design, but by 1975 Loudenslager had completely modified the airplane with a new forward fuselage, wings, tail, and cockpit. The Laser 200 emerged as a lighter, stronger, and more powerful aircraft, enabling Loudenslager to perform sharper and more difficult maneuvers.

Loudenslager’s legacy is evident in the tumbling and twisting but precise routines flown by current champions and airshow pilots. The Laser 200 heavily influenced the look and performance of the next generation of aerobatic aircraft, including the Extra, which dominated competition throughout the 1990s.

Gift of Carolyn and Kelly Loudenslager

Manufacturer:
Leo Loudenslager

Date:
1975-1998

Country of Origin:
United States of America

Dimensions:
Wingspan: 8 m (26 ft 2 in)
Length: 5.5 m (18 ft 8 in)
Height: 1.6 m (5 ft 5 in)
Weight, empty: 400 kg (885lb)
Top speed: 370km/h (230 mph)
Engine: Lycoming IO-360-A1A, 200 hp

Materials:
Fuselage: steel tube with Ceconite cover aft
Wings: one piece, wooden spars Physical Description:N-10LL. Mid-wing aerobatic monoplane, red with white shooting stars. Built and flown by aerobatic champion and airshow pilot Leo Loudenslager.
Engine: Lycoming IO-360-AIA, 200 hp
MT propeller, MTV-2B-C/193-02. Serial number 88 069

• • • • •

Quoting Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum | De Havilland-Canada DHC-1A Chipmunk, Pennzoil Special:

De Havilland originally designed the Chipmunk after World War II as a primary trainer to replace the venerable Tiger Moth. Among the tens of thousands of pilots who trained in or flew the Chipmunk for pleasure was veteran aerobatic and movie pilot Art Scholl. He flew his Pennzoil Special at air shows throughout the 1970s and early ’80s, thrilling audiences with his skill and showmanship and proving that the design was a top-notch aerobatic aircraft.

Art Scholl purchased the DHC-1A in 1968. He modified it to a single-seat airplane with a shorter wingspan and larger vertical fin and rudder, and made other changes to improve its performance. Scholl was a three-time member of the U.S. Aerobatic Team, an air racer, and a movie and television stunt pilot. At air shows, he often flew with his dog Aileron on his shoulder or taxied with him standing on the wing.

Gift of the Estate of Arthur E. Scholl

Manufacturer:
De Havilland Canada Ltd.

Pilot:
Art Scholl

Date:
1946

Country of Origin:
United States of America

Dimensions:
Wingspan: 9.4 m (31 ft)
Length: 7.9 m (26 ft)
Height: 2.1 m (7 ft 1 in)
Weight, empty: 717 kg (1,583 lb)
Weight, gross: 906 kg (2,000 lb)
Top speed: 265 km/h (165 mph)
Engine: Lycoming GO-435, 260 hp

Materials:
Overall: Aluminum Monocoque Physical Description:Single-engine monoplane. Lycoming GO-435, 260 hp engine.

• • • • •

Quoting Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum | Concorde, Fox Alpha, Air France:

The first supersonic airliner to enter service, the Concorde flew thousands of passengers across the Atlantic at twice the speed of sound for over 25 years. Designed and built by Aérospatiale of France and the British Aviation Corporation, the graceful Concorde was a stunning technological achievement that could not overcome serious economic problems.

In 1976 Air France and British Airways jointly inaugurated Concorde service to destinations around the globe. Carrying up to 100 passengers in great comfort, the Concorde catered to first class passengers for whom speed was critical. It could cross the Atlantic in fewer than four hours – half the time of a conventional jet airliner. However its high operating costs resulted in very high fares that limited the number of passengers who could afford to fly it. These problems and a shrinking market eventually forced the reduction of service until all Concordes were retired in 2003.

In 1989, Air France signed a letter of agreement to donate a Concorde to the National Air and Space Museum upon the aircraft’s retirement. On June 12, 2003, Air France honored that agreement, donating Concorde F-BVFA to the Museum upon the completion of its last flight. This aircraft was the first Air France Concorde to open service to Rio de Janeiro, Washington, D.C., and New York and had flown 17,824 hours.

Gift of Air France.

Manufacturer:
Societe Nationale Industrielle Aerospatiale
British Aircraft Corporation

Dimensions:
Wingspan: 25.56 m (83 ft 10 in)
Length: 61.66 m (202 ft 3 in)
Height: 11.3 m (37 ft 1 in)
Weight, empty: 79,265 kg (174,750 lb)
Weight, gross: 181,435 kg (400,000 lb)
Top speed: 2,179 km/h (1350 mph)
Engine: Four Rolls-Royce/SNECMA Olympus 593 Mk 602, 17,259 kg (38,050 lb) thrust each
Manufacturer: Société Nationale Industrielle Aérospatiale, Paris, France, and British Aircraft Corporation, London, United Kingdom

Physical Description:
Aircaft Serial Number: 205. Including four (4) engines, bearing respectively the serial number: CBE066, CBE062, CBE086 and CBE085.
Also included, aircraft plaque: "AIR FRANCE Lorsque viendra le jour d’exposer Concorde dans un musee, la Smithsonian Institution a dores et deja choisi, pour le Musee de l’Air et de l’Espace de Washington, un appariel portant le couleurs d’Air France."

Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center: main hall panorama (F-4 Corsair, et al)
aluminum prototype machining
Image by Chris Devers
See more photos of this, and the Wikipedia article.

Details, quoting from Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum | Vought F4U-1D Corsair:

By V-J Day, September 2, 1945, Corsair pilots had amassed an 11:1 kill ratio against enemy aircraft. The aircraft’s distinctive inverted gull-wing design allowed ground clearance for the huge, three-bladed Hamilton Standard Hydromatic propeller, which spanned more than 4 meters (13 feet). The Pratt and Whitney R-2800 radial engine and Hydromatic propeller was the largest and one of the most powerful engine-propeller combinations ever flown on a fighter aircraft.

Charles Lindbergh flew bombing missions in a Corsair with Marine Air Group 31 against Japanese strongholds in the Pacific in 1944. This airplane is painted in the colors and markings of the Corsair Sun Setter, a Marine close-support fighter assigned to the USS Essex in July 1944.

Transferred from the United States Navy.

Manufacturer:
Vought Aircraft Company

Date:
1940

Country of Origin:
United States of America

Dimensions:
Overall: 460 x 1020cm, 4037kg, 1250cm (15ft 1 1/8in. x 33ft 5 9/16in., 8900lb., 41ft 1/8in.)

Materials:
All metal with fabric-covered wings behind the main spar.

Physical Description:
R-2800 radial air-cooled engine with 1,850 horsepower, turned a three-blade Hamilton Standard Hydromatic propeller with solid aluminum blades spanning 13 feet 1 inch; wing bent gull-shaped on both sides of the fuselage.

Long Description:
On February 1, 1938, the United States Navy Bureau of Aeronautics requested proposals from American aircraft manufacturers for a new carrier-based fighter airplane. During April, the Vought Aircraft Corporation responded with two designs and one of them, powered by a Pratt & Whitney R-2800 engine, won the competition in June. Less than a year later, Vought test pilot Lyman A. Bullard, Jr., first flew the Vought XF4U-1 prototype on May 29, 1940. At that time, the largest engine driving the biggest propeller ever flown on a fighter aircraft propelled Bullard on this test flight. The R-2800 radial air-cooled engine developed 1,850 horsepower and it turned a three-blade Hamilton Standard Hydromatic propeller with solid aluminum blades spanning 13 feet 1 inch.

The airplane Bullard flew also had another striking feature, a wing bent gull-shaped on both sides of the fuselage. This arrangement gave additional ground clearance for the propeller and reduced drag at the wing-to-fuselage joint. Ironically for a 644-kph (400 mph) airplane, Vought covered the wing with fabric behind the main spar, a practice the company also followed on the OS2U Kingfisher (see NASM collection).

When naval air strategists had crafted the requirements for the new fighter, the need for speed had overridden all other performance goals. With this in mind, the Bureau of Aeronautics selected the most powerful air-cooled engine available, the R-2800. Vought assembled a team, lead by chief designer Rex Biesel, to design the best airframe around this powerful engine. The group included project engineer Frank Albright, aerodynamics engineer Paul Baker, and propulsion engineer James Shoemaker. Biesel and his team succeeded in building a very fast fighter but when they redesigned the prototype for production, they were forced to make an unfortunate compromise.

The Navy requested heavier armament for production Corsairs and Biesel redesigned each outboard folding wing panel to carry three .50 caliber machine guns. These guns displaced fuel tanks installed in each wing leading edge. To replace this lost capacity, an 897-liter (237 gal) fuselage tank was installed between the cockpit and the engine. To maintain the speedy and narrow fuselage profile, Biesel could not stack the cockpit on top of the tank, so he moved it nearly three feet aft. Now the wing completely blocked the pilot’s line of sight during the most critical stages of landing. The early Corsair also had a vicious stall, powerful torque and propeller effects at slow speed, a short tail wheel strut, main gear struts that often bounced the airplane at touchdown, and cowl flap actuators that leaked oil onto the windshield. These difficulties, combined with the lack of cockpit visibility, made the airplane nearly impossible to land on the tiny deck of an aircraft carrier. Navy pilots soon nicknamed the F4U the ‘ensign eliminator’ for its tendency to kill these inexperienced aviators. The Navy refused to clear the F4U for carrier operations until late in 1944, more than seven years after the project started.

This flaw did not deter the Navy from accepting Corsairs because Navy and Marine pilots sorely needed an improved fighter to replace the Grumman F4F Wildcat (see NASM collection). By New Year’s Eve, 1942, the service owned 178 F4U-1 airplanes. Early in 1943, the Navy decided to divert all Corsairs to land-based United States Marine Corps squadrons and fill Navy carrier-based units with the Grumman F6F Hellcat (see NASM collection). At its best speed of 612 kph (380 mph) at 6,992 m (23,000 ft), the Hellcat was about 24 kph (15 mph) slower than the Corsair but it was a joy to fly aboard the carrier. The F6F filled in splendidly until improvements to the F4U qualified it for carrier operations. Meanwhile, the Marines on Guadalcanal took their Corsairs into combat and engaged the enemy for the first time on February 14, 1943, six months before Hellcat pilots on that battle-scared island first encountered enemy aircraft.

The F4U had an immediate impact on the Pacific air war. Pilots could use the Corsair’s speed and firepower to engage the more maneuverable Japanese airplanes only when the advantage favored the Americans. Unprotected by armor or self-sealing fuel tanks, no Japanese fighter or bomber could withstand for more than a few seconds the concentrated volley from the six .50 caliber machine guns carried by a Corsair. Major Gregory "Pappy" Boyington assumed command of Marine Corsair squadron VMF-214, nicknamed the ‘Black Sheep’ squadron, on September 7, 1943. During less than 5 months of action, Boyington received credit for downing 28 enemy aircraft. Enemy aircraft shot him down on January 3, 1944, but he survived the war in a Japanese prison camp.

In May and June 1944, Charles A. Lindbergh flew Corsair missions with Marine pilots at Green Island and Emirau. On September 3, 1944, Lindbergh demonstrated the F4U’s bomb hauling capacity by flying a Corsair from Marine Air Group 31 carrying three bombs each weighing 450 kg (1,000 lb). He dropped this load on enemy positions at Wotje Atoll. On the September 8, Lindbergh dropped the first 900-kg (2,000 lb) bomb during an attack on the atoll. For the finale five days later, the Atlantic flyer delivered a 900-kg (2,000 lb) bomb and two 450-kg (1,000 lb) bombs. Lindbergh went ahead and flew these missions after the commander of MAG-31 informed him that if he was forced down and captured, the Japanese would almost certainly execute him.

As of V-J Day, September 2, 1945, the Navy credited Corsair pilots with destroying 2,140 enemy aircraft in aerial combat. The Navy and Marines lost 189 F4Us in combat and 1,435 Corsairs in non-combat accidents. Beginning on February 13, 1942, Marine and Navy pilots flew 64,051 operational sorties, 54,470 from runways and 9,581 from carrier decks. During the war, the British Royal Navy accepted 2,012 Corsairs and the Royal New Zealand Air Force accepted 364. The demand was so great that the Goodyear Aircraft Corporation and the Brewster Aeronautical Corporation also produced the F4U.

Corsairs returned to Navy carrier decks and Marine airfields during the Korean War. On September 10, 1952, Captain Jesse Folmar of Marine Fighter Squadron VMF-312 destroyed a MiG-15 in aerial combat over the west coast of Korea. However, F4U pilots did not have many air-to-air encounters over Korea. Their primary mission was to support Allied ground units along the battlefront.

After the World War II, civilian pilots adapted the speedy bent-wing bird from Vought to fly in competitive air races. They preferred modified versions of the F2G-1 and -2 originally built by Goodyear. Corsairs won the prestigious Thompson Trophy twice. In 1952, Vought manufactured 94 F4U-7s for the French Navy, and these aircraft saw action over Indochina but this order marked the end of Corsair production. In production longer than any other U.S. fighter to see service in World War II, Vought, Goodyear, and Brewster built a total of 12,582 F4Us.

The United States Navy donated an F4U-1D to the National Air and Space Museum in September 1960. Vought delivered this Corsair, Bureau of Aeronautics serial number 50375, to the Navy on April 26, 1944. By October, pilots of VF-10 were flying it but in November, the airplane was transferred to VF-89 at Naval Air Station Atlantic City. It remained there as the squadron moved to NAS Oceana and NAS Norfolk. During February 1945, the Navy withdrew the airplane from active service and transferred it to a pool of surplus aircraft stored at Quantico, Virginia. In 1980, NASM craftsmen restored the F4U-1D in the colors and markings of a Corsair named "Sun Setter," a fighter assigned to Marine Fighter Squadron VMF-114 when that unit served aboard the "USS Essex" in July 1944.

• • •

Quoting from Wikipedia | Vought F4U Corsair:

The Chance Vought F4U Corsair was a carrier-capable fighter aircraft that saw service primarily in World War II and the Korean War. Demand for the aircraft soon overwhelmed Vought’s manufacturing capability, resulting in production by Goodyear and Brewster: Goodyear-built Corsairs were designated FG and Brewster-built aircraft F3A. From the first prototype delivery to the U.S. Navy in 1940, to final delivery in 1953 to the French, 12,571 F4U Corsairs were manufactured by Vought, in 16 separate models, in the longest production run of any piston-engined fighter in U.S. history (1942–1953).

The Corsair served in the U.S. Navy, U.S. Marines, Fleet Air Arm and the Royal New Zealand Air Force, as well as the French Navy Aeronavale and other, smaller, air forces until the 1960s. It quickly became the most capable carrier-based fighter-bomber of World War II. Some Japanese pilots regarded it as the most formidable American fighter of World War II, and the U.S. Navy counted an 11:1 kill ratio with the F4U Corsair.

F4U-1D (Corsair Mk IV): Built in parallel with the F4U-1C, but was introduced in April 1944. It had the new -8W water-injection engine. This change gave the aircraft up to 250 hp (190 kW) more power, which, in turn, increased performance. Speed, for example, was boosted from 417 miles per hour (671 km/h) to 425 miles per hour (684 km/h). Because of the U.S. Navy’s need for fighter-bombers, it had a payload of rockets double the -1A’s, as well as twin-rack plumbing for an additional belly drop tank. Such modifications necessitated the need for rocket tabs (attached to fully metal-plated underwing surfaces) and bomb pylons to be bolted on the fighter, however, causing extra drag. Additionally, the role of fighter-bombing was a new task for the Corsair and the wing fuel cells proved too vulnerable and were removed.[] The extra fuel carried by the two drop tanks would still allow the aircraft to fly relatively long missions despite the heavy, un-aerodynamic load. The regular armament of six machine guns were implemented as well. The canopies of most -1Ds had their struts removed along with their metal caps, which were used — at one point — as a measure to prevent the canopies’ glass from cracking as they moved along the fuselage spines of the fighters.[] Also, the clear-view style "Malcolm Hood" canopy used initially on Supermarine Spitfire and P-51C Mustang aircraft was adopted as standard equipment for the -1D model, and all later F4U production aircraft. Additional production was carried out by Goodyear (FG-1D) and Brewster (F3A-1D). In Fleet Air Arm service, the latter was known as the Corsair III, and both had their wingtips clipped by 8" per wing to allow storage in the lower hangars of British carriers.