Grumman F4F Wildcat Fighters

The Grumman F4F was the primary Navy and Marine Corps fighter during the first year and a half of World War II. A developed form, the General Motors FM-2, remained in active combat through the end of the Pacific War. Though the stubby little F4F could not equal the speed and maneuverability of its Japanese counterpart, the 'Zero', its rugged construction and superior armament, coupled with well-trained pilots and good tactics, ensured that it generally gave at least 'as good as it got' during the crisis months of 1942.

The F4F-1 was a biplane design, whose clear inferiority to the monoplane Brewster F2A-1 caused its complete recasting into the single-wing XF4F-2. When the Brewster fighter was chosen for production, Grumman's prototype was rebuilt as the XF4F-3 with new wings and tail and a supercharged version of the Pratt & Whitney R-1830 'Twin Wasp' radial engine. Testing of the XF4F-3 led to an order for F4F-3 Wildcat production models, the first of which was completed in February 1940. France also ordered the type, powered by Wright R-1820 'Cyclone' radial engines. These ultimately went to the British Royal Navy, which called them 'Martlet I's. Both the British planes and the U.S. Navy's F4F-3 Wildcat joined active units in 1940 with an armament of four .50 caliber Browning machine guns and a good ammunition supply.

By the end of 1941 the Grumman F4F-3 Wildcat (and similar F4F-3A) fighters, which had received the popular name Wildcat a few months earlier, had replaced the F2A in most U.S. Navy and Marine Corps fighting squadrons. A folding-wing version flew in April 1941 and entered service in early 1942 as the F4F-4. Prompted by British tactical concepts, it had six guns but less ammunition. The heavier F4F-4 was not as nimble nor as fast as the F4F-3, but the logic of wartime manufacturing left it as the sole remaining production version, and its folding wings made it possible to cram more valuable fighters into each aircraft carrier. By the Battle of Midway in June 1942, all the Pacific Fleet's carriers had the F4F-4 and fighting squadron pilots were learning, sometimes painfully, how to best employ it. Employ it they did, quite successfully, through the Pacific's intense Guadalcanal and Central Solomons campaigns and the Atlantic's North African operation.

In late 1942 and early 1943, Grumman phased out production of the F4F-4 and General Motors' Eastern Aircraft Division took it up as the FM-1 (with two less guns). In all, the two companies produced some three-thousand 'Wildcats' for the U.S. and Britain before GM's factories switched to the updated FM-2 in the later part of 1943.

F4F-4 Wildcat characteristics:
  # Dimensions: Wing Span, 38 feet; Length, 28 feet 9 inches; Wing Area, 260 square feet.
  # Weights: Empty, 5785 pounds; Gross, 7975 pounds
  # Powerplant: One 1,200 horsepower Pratt & Whitney R-1830-86 double-row radial engine.
  # Armament: Six .50 caliber Browning machine guns; Two 100-pound bombs.
  # Performance: Maximum Speed, 320 m.p.h. (@ 19,800 feet & weight of 7975 pounds).

Royal Navy Martlet and Wildcat Fighters

A modified version of the U.S. Navy's F4F, the Grumman Model G-36A provided the Royal Navy with its first high-performance single-seat monoplane carrier fighter. Named 'Martlet I' in British service, these 81 aircraft had originally been ordered by France and were taken over by the British after France surrendered. Powered by 1,240 horsepower Wright 'Cyclone' radial engines, the first 'Martlets' entered service in September 1940, and achieved the first 'kill' for any American-built fighter in British service on Christmas day of that year, when a German Ju-88 was forced down near Scapa Flow.

Several other versions of the design followed in 1941. The 100 'Martlet II' and 30 'Martlet III' types had 1,200 horsepower Pratt & Whitney 'Twin Wasp' engines, like the American F4Fs. Most 'Martlet IIs' also had folding wings. These early 'Martlets' had considerable combat service, flying from shore bases and from aircraft carriers, including the pioneer escort carrier, HMS Audacity. Very maneuverable by European standards, and heavily armed, they were a serious threat to enemy aircraft.

The 'Cyclone' powered Grumman F4F-4B, a type built solely for transfer to the British, became the 'Martlet IV'. Like later versions of the design, these 220 planes were provided through Lend-Lease, rather than by sale, and were delivered starting in 1942. Next in the series were over 300 'Martlet Vs', identical to the U.S. Navy's General Motors-built FM-1, with Pratt & Whitney engines. Surviving units of these two types were redesignated 'Wildcat IV' and 'Wildcat V' in January 1944. There were also 340 'Wildcat VI' fighters, the equivalent to the USN's FM-2. The first of these arrived in 1944.

The later British 'Martlets' and 'Wildcats' were extensively used at sea, primarily based on escort carriers though some were also carried aboard fleet carriers. In addition to anti-submarine work, teamed with 'Swordfish' strike aircraft, they participated in amphibious operations in the Mediterranean and Normandy, helped make oceanic aerial reconnaissance unhealthy for the German air force and successfully competed with enemy fighters for control of the air over European shores.

For general characteristics of this type of aircraft, see the entries for U.S. Navy F4F and FM-2 Wildcat fighters.

Martlet Mark I

The Martlet Mark I was aircraft originally ordered by France and Belgium. The Belgians ordered Martlets (Reference 10) which, according to Grumman records, were absorbed into the French order when Belgium fell. The Martlet (G-36A) was from the these two orders, which could not be delivered because of the fall of France.

Martlet Is came equipped with a Wright R-1820-G205A Cyclone engine with a single-stage, two-speed supercharger. The Cyclone was shorter than the Twin Wasp so the cowl was shorter in chord and did not have any cowl flaps, and with the overall length being the same (approximate) length as a Wildcat with a Pratt and Whitney engine, the distance between the wing and rear of the cowl was longer. This is true of all Cyclone powered Martlets/Wildcats. With the Mk.I, this distance was 22 inches (as measured on the FAA Museum’s sole surviving Mk.I). It has to be mentioned here, that the single row Cyclone had either baffle plates or air intakes between the cylinders. This forced air over the cooling fins and cooled the engine more efficiently. All single row radials in a cowl were configured like this. The twin row Twin Wasp did not need the baffles for cooling.

All Martlet Mk.Is had the F4F-3 Wildcat straight pitot tube and a Hamilton Standard Hydro-matic uncuffed prop. Mk.Is had fixed wings and 4 wing guns, 46” and 117” from the centerline of the fuselage with 430 rounds per gun. Otherwise, these Martlets were similar to F4F-3Bs.

Contrary to popular belief Martlet Is did go to sea. They were equipped with hooks, but the holdback was not fitted. Serials included AL231-AL262, AX824-AX829, BJ507-BJ527, and BJ554-BJ570.
Lost at sea whilst being delivered were Martlet I serials BT447-BT456 (Reference 10, 11).

Martlet Mark II

The Martlet II was the first Martlet actually ordered by the British Purchasing Commission for the FAA. The contract was for 100 F4F-4A equivalent aircraft with folding wings and 3 guns per wing with 240 rounds per gun. The first ten Mk.IIs were delivered to F4F-3 Wildcat standards with fixed wings and 4 wing guns. These 10, Serials AM954 to AM963 were redesignated as Mark IIIs (References 2,4,7,8,10,11). These are covered in the Mark III section. The remaining Mark IIs were differentiated by the pitot tubes. AM964 to AM 999 had a unique pitot. This pitot was located on the port upper wing, near the inner edge of the aileron. This pitot angled to the rear and upwards. These aircraft were the only Wildcat/Martlet to use this pitot. The remaining Mark IIs, serial range AJ100 to AJ153 used the standard F4F-4 pitot.

The Martlet II (from this point onwards, I am not speaking of the first 10 Mk.IIs which became Mk.IIIs) were powered by a Pratt and Whitney R-1830-90 Twin Wasp single stage two speed supercharged radial. This engine had the magnetos on the rear of the engine, next to the carburetor. The cowl was the standard chord Pratt and Whitney cowl, which had one large cowl flap on each side. The distance from the wing leading edge to the rear of the cowl is 14 5/8 inches on all Pratt and Whitney powered Martlets/Wildcats. The cowl did not have the carb intake on the top, and the intercooler scoops were deleted. The propeller was a cuffed Curtiss Electric three blade, with a domed (similar to the dome found on P-43s and P-47s with Curtiss props) hub. All had folding wings with 3 guns per wing and had 240 rounds per gun. Some aircraft in the AM serial range had an extended lower fairing, which may have had something to do with the fuel system; AJ series aircraft did not have this extension. Serials for Martlet Mk.II are AM964-AM999 and AJ100-AJ153. Aircraft lost at sea whilst being delivered were AM954, AJ105, AJ106, AJ138-AJ145, and AJ124-AJ126.

General Motors FM-2 Wildcat Fighters

In 1942, automobile manufacturer General Motors converted several of its east coast factories to aircraft production under the name Eastern Aircraft Division. Eastern received contracts to build F4F-4 Wildcat fighters and TBF-1 'Avenger' torpedo planes, allowing Grumman to gradually reconcentrate its energies on the new, urgently-needed F6F 'Hellcat' fighter. The GM F4F-4s, redesignated FM-1s, had only four .50 caliber machine guns, but were otherwise little changed from the original model. Well over a thousand FM-1 fighters were delivered in 1942-43, including some three hundred for the British Royal Navy.

Meanwhile, Grumman had prototyped a new Wildcat under the designation XF4F-8, which was to be produced by Eastern Aircraft as the FM-2. With lightened structure and a more powerful Wright R-1820 radial engine, the FM-2 was notably quicker, faster climbing, longer ranged and more maneuverable than its predecessor. To help control the increased power, the new plane had a distinctive, taller vertical tail. All-in-all, it was a great improvement, and more than four thousand FM-2s were built in 1943-45. Of those, over three hundred went to the British.

The U.S. Navy FM-2s operated exclusively from escort carriers (CVEs), small ships with notoriously lively flight decks. They were used in the Atlantic, teamed with TBM 'Avengers' for anti-submarine work, the escort carriers' original purpose. In the Pacific, CVEs did ASW too, but also employed their 'Avengers' and 'Wildcats' to provide air cover for invasion forces and close air support for ground troops. Those missions produced opportunities for aerial combat against Japanese planes, and two Navy pilots achieved 'ace' status in FM-2s. The GM Wildcat also played an important role in the 25 October 1944 Battle off Samar, in which a force of the slow CVEs and their escorts out-fought a vastly superior Japanese surface fleet.

FM-2 Wildcat characteristics:
  # Dimensions: Wing Span, 38 feet; Length, 28 feet 11 inches; Wing Area, 260 square feet.
  # Weights: Empty, 5448 pounds; Gross, 8271 pounds
  # Powerplant: One 1,350 horsepower Wright R-1820-56 'Cyclone' single-row radial engine.
  # Armament: four .50 caliber Browning machine guns; Two 250-pound bombs or six 5-inch rockets.
  # Performance: Maximum Speed, 332 m.p.h. (@ 28,800 feet).

On 1 march 1943 there was a major redesignation of US Navy squadrons.

"A revision of the squadron designation system changed Inshore Patrol Squadrons to Scouting Squadrons (VS), Escort Fighting Squadrons (VGF) to Fighting Squadrons (VF), Escort Scouting Squadrons (VGS) to Composite Squadrons (VC) and Patrol Squadrons (VP) operating land type aircraft to Bombing Squadrons (VB). This revision also redesignated carrier Scouting Squadrons (VS) as VB and VC and as a result the types of squadrons on Essex Class carriers was reduced to three. In spite of this change, the aircraft complement of their Air Groups remained at its previous level of 21 VF, 36 VSB and 18 VTB."

I tried to make a list of the squadrons involved. Any corrections?

Escort Carrier fighter squadrons:
VGF-26 -> VF-26 (Air group 26)
VGF-27 -> VF-27 (Air group 27)
VGF-28 -> VF-28 (Air group 28 )
VGF-29 -> VF-29 (Air group 29)

Escort Carrier scouting squadrons:
Note: VGS-27 became a torpedo squadron instead of composite squadron. VC-23 was former VS-23.
Squadrons with the same hull number of the ships they were intended for.
VGS-1 -> VC-1
VGS-9 -> VC-9
VGS-11 -> VC-11
VGS-12 -> VC-12
VGS-13 -> VC-13
VGS-16 -> VC-16
VGS-18 -> VC-18
VGS-20 -> VC-20
VGS-21 -> VC-21
VGS-23 -> VC-19
VGS-25 -> VC-25
VGS-26 -> VC-26 (Air group 26)
VGS-27 -> VT-27 (Air group 27)
VGS-28 -> VC-28 (Air group 28 )
VGS-29 -> VC-29 (Air group 29)
VGS-31 -> VC-31
VGS-33 -> VC-33
VGS-34 -> VC-34
VGS-35 -> VC-35
VGS-36 -> VC-36
VGS-37 -> VC-37
VGS-55 -> VC-55
VGS-58 -> VC-58
VGS-60 -> VC-60

Fleet Carrier Scouting squadrons:
Note: VC-25 was former VGS-25.
VS-3 -> VB-4 (Air Group 5)
VS-6 -> VB-13 (Air Group 3)
VS-9 -> VB-19 (Air Group 9)
VS-10 -> VB-20 (Air Group 10)
VS-11 -> VB-21 (Air Group 11)
VS-12 -> VB-22 (Air Group 12)
VS-16 -> VB-23 (Air Group 16)
VS-17 -> VB-7 (Air Group 17)
VS-22 -> VC-22 (Air Group 22)
VS-23 -> VC-23 (Air Group 23)
VS-24 -> VC-24 (Air Group 24)
VS-25 -> VC-2 (Air Group 25)
VS-41 -> VB-41 (Air Group 4)
VS-42 -> VB-42 (Air Group 4)

Patrol squadrons (Lockeed PV):
VP-41 -> VB-136
VP-42 -> VB-135 (15 feb)
VP-82 -> VB-125
VP-93 -> VB-126

Patrol squadrons (Consolidated PB4Y):
VP-51 -> VB-101
VP-31 -> VB-105 (15 may)
VP-83 -> VB-107 (15 may)

Inshore patrol squadrons:
Note: VS-41 and 42 were skipped probably to avoid confusion with former Air Group 4 squadrons.
VS-1D1 -> VS-31
VS-2D1 -> VS-32
VS-3D1 -> VS-33
VS-1D3 -> VS-34
VS-1D4 -> VS-36
VS-5D4 -> VS-35
VS-1D5 -> VS-37
VS-2D5 -> VS-38
VS-1D7 -> VS-39
VS-2D7 -> VS-40
VS-3D7 -> VS-62
VS-1D10 -> VS-63
VS-2D10 -> VS-43
VS-3D10 -> VS-44
VS-4D10 -> VS-45
VS-1D11 -> VS-46
VS-1D12 -> VS-47
VS-2D12 -> VS-48
VS-1D13 -> VS-49
VS-2D13 -> VS-50
VS-1D14 -> VS-51
VS-2D14 -> VS-52
VS-3D14 -> VS-53
VS-4D14 -> VS-54
VS-5D14 -> VS-55
VS-6D14 -> VS-56
VS-7D14 -> VS-57
VS-8D14 -> VS-58
VS-1D15 -> VS-59
VS-2D15 -> VS-60

maxs75, Jul 25, 2009 - https://ww2aircraft.net/forum/threads/navy-squadron-designation.19838/

Airbase Naval Air Station Midway aerial photo 1943 01

Airbase Naval Air Station Midway aerial photo 1945 01

Airbase Naval Air Station Midway aerial photo 1945 02

Airbase Naval Air Station Midway aerial photo 1945 03

Aircraft scale drawing of a Ford FM-2 Wildcat Bottom View 1.48 Scale drawn by J Temma 0A

Aircraft scale drawing of a Ford FM-2 Wildcat Front and Rear Cross Section View 1.48 Scale drawn by J Temma 0A

Aircraft scale drawing of a Ford FM-2 Wildcat Side and Cross Section View 1.48 Scale drawn by J Temma 0A

Aircraft scale drawing of a Ford FM-2 Wildcat Side View 1.48 Scale drawn by J Temma 0A

Aircraft scale drawing of a Ford FM-2 Wildcat Top Section Color View 1.48 Scale drawn by J Temma 0A

Aircraft scale drawing of a Ford FM-2 Wildcat Top Section View 1.48 Scale drawn by J Temma 0A

Aircraft scale drawing of a Grumman F4F-3 Wildcat Bottom View 1.48 Scale drawn by J Temma 0A

Aircraft scale drawing of a Grumman F4F-3 Wildcat Top View 1.48 Scale drawn by J Temma 0A

Aircraft scale drawing of a Grumman F4F-4 Wildcat Bottom View 1.48 Scale drawn by J Temma 0A

Aircraft scale drawing of a Grumman F4F-4 Wildcat Front and Rear Cross Section View 1.48 Scale drawn by J Temma 0A

Aircraft scale drawing of a Grumman F4F-4 Wildcat Side and Cross Section View 1.48 Scale drawn by J Temma 0A

Aircraft scale drawing of a Grumman F4F-4 Wildcat Side View 1.48 Scale drawn by J Temma 0A

Aircraft scale drawing of a Grumman F4F-4 Wildcat Top View 1.48 Scale drawn by J Temma 0A

Aircrew Ensign R K Rountree photo series FM-1 Wildcat Black 14 preparing for flight April 1944 01

Aircrew Ensign R K Rountree photo series FM-1 Wildcat Black 17 preparing for flight April 1944 01

Aircrew Ensign R K Rountree photo series FM-1 Wildcat Black 17 preparing for flight April 1944 02

Aircrew Ensign R K Rountree photo series FM-1 Wildcat Black 20 landing gear repairs April 1944 01

Aircrew Ensign R K Rountree photo series FM-1 Wildcat Black 20 rudder repairs April 1944 01

Aircrew Ensign R K Rountree photo series FM-1 Wildcat Black 22 preparing for flight April 1944 01

Aircrew F4F Wildcat pilot Ensign Donald Flash Gordon VF-10 Grim Reapers 1942 01

Aircrew FM-2 Wildcat pilot Ensign Harold R Truesdale 1945 01

Aircrew TBF Avenger pilot Ensign R K Rountree Avenger on deck photo series April 1944 01

Aircrew TBF Avenger pilot Ensign R K Rountree Avenger on deck photo series April 1944 02

Aircrew TBF Avenger pilot Ensign R K Rountree Black 10 on deck photo series April 1944 01

Aircrew TBF Avenger pilot Ensign R K Rountree Black 2 on deck photo series April 1944 01

Aircrew TBF Avenger pilot Ensign R K Rountree Black 3 on deck photo series April 1944 01

Aircrew TBF Avenger pilot Ensign R K Rountree Black 7 on deck photo series April 1944 01

Aircrew TBF Avenger pilot Ensign R K Rountree maintenance crew working on Black 10 April 1944 01

Aircrew TBF Avenger pilot Ensign R K Rountree maintenance crew working on Black 2 April 1944 01

Aircrew TBF Avenger pilot Ensign R K Rountree photo series taken in April 1944 01

Aircrew USMC pilot makes a quick exit after ditching his sinking Wildcat 01

Aircrew USMC Wildcat pilot 1st Lt Jefferson Joseph DeBlanc VMF 112 01

Aircrew USMC Wildcat pilot 2nd Lt Otto Seifert VMF 112 Guadalcanal 1942 01

Aircrew USN VC-58 VF-pilots onboard USS Guadalcanal 15th April 1944 01

Aircrew USN VF-21 Blackjack Squadron Guadalcanal 1943 01

A Map WWII showing Battle of the Coral Sea and Battle of Midway 1942

A Map WWII showing Carrier Operations Dec 1941 to Apr 1942

A Map WWII showing First Air Fleet operations March 1942

A Map WWII showing Operation Cartwheel Jun 1943 to Apr 1944

A Map WWII showing PTO boundaries July 1942

Carrier deck isnt the easist place in the world to play a game of Gridiron but it beats war 01

Carrier opps Sep 1942 01

Douglas SBD 3 Dauntless White 20 taxing aboard a USS Carrier Sep 1942 01

Douglas SBD 3 Dauntless White 38 taxing aboard a USS Carrier Sep 1942 01

FM-1 Wildcat Black 3 BuNo 16130 landing mishap LTJG Bohlen CVE-60 USS Guadalcanal 30th May 1944 01

FM-1 Wildcat VC-12 White F9 launching from CVE-69 USS Kasaan Bay 6th Feb 1944 01

FM-1 Wildcat VC-25 Black 154 landing mishap CVE-21 USS Block Island 1943 01

FM-1 Wildcat VC-25 Black 156 landing mishap ashore 1943 01

FM-1 Wildcat VC-25 Black 156 landing mishap ashore 1943 02

FM-1 Wildcat VC-3 White 2 landing aboard CVE-68 USS Kalanin Bay 1944 01

FM-1 Wildcat White F11 on the catapult ready to launch 01

FM-2 Wildcat after ditching and the pilot struggling to get to his life boat 01

FM-2 Wildcat being rearmed aboard CVE-9 USS Mission Bay 3rd Jan 1944 01

FM-2 Wildcat Black 14 in late war color scheme being prepared for launch 01

FM-2 Wildcat Black 17 ready for launch 01

FM-2 Wildcat Black 17 ready for launch 02

FM-2 Wildcat Black 20 being prepared for launch 30th April 1944 01

FM-2 Wildcat Black 22 in late war color scheme being prepared for launch 01

FM-2 Wildcat Black 22 in late war color scheme with propellor damage 01

FM-2 Wildcat Black 2 landing mishap showing late war camuflage scheme 01

FM-2 Wildcat Black 7 landing mishap showing late war camuflage scheme 01

FM-2 Wildcat Black 7 on patrol showing late war camuflage scheme c 1945 01

FM-2 Wildcat from USS Charger May 1944 01

FM-2 Wildcat going over the side after a landing mishap 01

FM-2 Wildcat going over the side after a landing mishap 02

FM-2 Wildcat landing mishap and fuel tank explosion being tackled by USN carrier fire fighters 01

FM-2 Wildcat landing mishap CVE-87 USS Steamer Bay 01

FM-2 Wildcat landing mishap CVE-87 USS Steamer Bay 02

FM-2 Wildcat Operation Tourch landing accident Morocco 1942 01

FM-2 Wildcat preparing for luanch CV8 USS Makin Island 0

FM-2 Wildcats from USS Kitkun Bay during battle off Samar 01

FM-2 Wildcat taking off with right rudder to prevent cross wind 01

FM-2 Wildcat taking off with right rudder to prevent cross wind 0A

FM-2 Wildcat USS Makin Island CVE-93 1944 45 01

FM-2 Wildcat VC-14 White D6 Judy aboard CVE-75 USS Hoggatt Bay Nov 1944 01

FM-2 Wildcat VC-3 White 3 landing mishap CVE-68 USS Kalinin Bay 29th June 1944 01

FM-2 Wildcat VC-65 White 3 bogged in mud from CVE-63 USS St Lo 01

FM-2 Wildcat VC-68 LTJG Bob Hoppe and his damaged aircraft from CVE-70 USS Fanshaw Bay 01

FM-2 Wildcat VC-68 LTJG Bob Hoppe and his damaged aircraft from CVE-70 USS Fanshaw Bay 02

FM-2 Wildcat VC-68 White 08 ditched Ed White Van Hise Jr 1945 01

FM-2 Wildcat VC-68 White 08 ditched Ed White Van Hise Jr 1945 02

FM-2 Wildcat VC-70 trying to land CVE-96 USS Salamaua 1945 01

FM-2 Wildcat VC-70 White 17 with nice paint job 01

FM-2 Wildcat VC-70 White 17 with nice paint job 02

FM-2 Wildcat VC-70 White 17 with nice paint job 03

FM-2 Wildcat VC-70 White 17 with nice paint job 04

FM-2 Wildcat VC-75 White 23 landing mishap CVE-61 USS Manila Bay 1945 01 (2)

FM-2 Wildcat VC-75 White 23 landing mishap CVE-61 USS Manila Bay 1945 01

FM-2 Wildcat VC-77 aboard CVE-81 USS Rudyerd Bay 1945 01

FM-2 Wildcat VC-77 Yellow 4,15,6 and 9 CVE-81 USS Rudyerd Bay 1945 01

FM-2 Wildcat VC-81 White 11 landing mishap CVE-62 USS Natoma Bay 1944 01

FM-2 Wildcat VC-81 White 17 prepares to take off CVE-62 USS Natoma Bay 1944 01

FM-2 Wildcat VC-81 White 21 landing mishap CVE-62 USS Natoma Bay 1944 01

FM-2 Wildcat VC-81 White 4 landing mishap CVE-62 USS Natoma Bay 1944 01

FM-2 Wildcat VC-86 White N10 landing mishap CVE-95 USS Bismarck Sea 1944 01

FM-2 Wildcat VC-86 White N27 landing mishap CVE-95 USS Bismarck Sea 1944 01

FM-2 Wildcat VC-86 White N27 landing mishap CVE-95 USS Bismarck Sea 1944 02

FM-2 Wildcat VC-86 White N27 landing mishap CVE-95 USS Bismarck Sea 1944 03

FM-2 Wildcat VC-86 White N37 CVE-95 USS Bismarck Sea Nov 1944 01

FM-2 Wildcat VC-93 White 16, 18, 19 and 24 landed based 01

FM-2 Wildcat VC-93 White 16, 18, 19 and 24 landed based 02

FM-2 Wildcat VC-96 White 2 and 90 with TBM 3 Avengers CVE-81 USS Rudyerd Bay 1945 01

FM-2 Wildcat VC-96 White 9 landing mishap CVE-81 USS Rudyerd Bay 1st Apr 1945 01

FM-2 Wildcat VC-97 White 3 landing mishap CVE-91 USS Makassar 1945 01

FM-2 Wildcat VC-99 takes off from Tacloban Leyte Island PI 01

FM-2 Wildcat VC-99 White 8 on patrol CVE-87 USS Steamer Bay 1945 01

FM-2 Wildcat VF-26 White 17 is in flight off Leyte PI CVE-29 USS Santee 1944 01

FM-2 Wildcat VF-26 White 17 is in flight off Leyte PI CVE-29 USS Santee 1944 02

FM-2 Wildcat VF-71 USS Kitkun Bay Battle of Lyete Gulf 01

FM-2 Wildcat VF-71 USS Kitkun Bay Battle of Lyete Gulf 02

FM-2 Wildcat VF-97 White 12 being mission readied 01

FM-2 Wildcat VF-97 White 6, 10, 13 and 14 in formation 01

FM-2 Wildcat White 14 from USS Makin Island takes a wave off 01

FM-2 Wildcat White 20 being readied for catapult launch 01

FM-2 Wildcat White 30 landing mishap 01

FM-2 Wildcat White A15 landing mishap 01

FM-2 Wildcat White A16 preparing to launch CVE-101 USS Matanikau c 1945 01

FM-2 Wildcat White EE14,EE3,EE2 and EE4 in flight CVE-101 USS Matanikay Oct 1944 01

FM-2 Wildcat White F9 hit by a landing aircraft looses its rudder 01

FM-2 Wildcat White Q103 shore based landing mishap 01

FM-2 Wildcat with engine fire always a major concern 01

FM-2 Wildcat wreckage at Leyte PI 01

General Motors FM-1 Wildcat VC-58 Black 4 BuNo 46776 aboard CVE-60 USS Guadalcanal Jan 1944 0A

General Motors FM-1 Wildcat White L12 BuNo 46789 CVE-61 USS Manila Bay 16th Dec 1943 01

General Motors FM-1 Wildcat White L12 BuNo 46789 CVE-61 USS Manila Bay 16th Dec 1943 02

General Motors FM-1 Wildcat White L12 BuNo 46789 CVE-61 USS Manila Bay 16th Dec 1943 03

General Motors FM-1 Wildcat White L12 BuNo 46789 CVE-61 USS Manila Bay 16th Dec 1943 04

General Motors FM-1 Wildcat White L12 BuNo 46789 CVE-61 USS Manila Bay 16th Dec 1943 05

General Motors FM-2 Wildcat VC-94 White 16 BuNo 73982 CVE-84 USS Shamrock Bay Okinawa 1945 01

Grumman F4F-3 Wildcat Black 14 aboard CV-16 USS Lexington 1944 01

Grumman F4F-3 Wildcat Black 15 landing on a calm day 30th Apr 1944 01

Grumman F4F-3 Wildcat Black 18 head on 01

Grumman F4F-3 Wildcat Black 24 being urgently pushed back to clear the deck 01

Grumman F4F-3 Wildcat Black F10 on deck showing early camuflage scheme c 1942 01

Grumman F4F-3 Wildcat from USS Saratoga October 1941 01

Grumman F4F-3 Wildcat landing mishap possibly VF-6 20th Aug 1942 01

Grumman F4F-3 Wildcats Black F24 F20 and F22 aboard CV-12 USS Hornet 4th Jun 1942 01

Grumman F4F-3 Wildcat VC-14 White D4 on its nose after a landing mishap 01

Grumman F4F-3 Wildcat VF-17 White 86F17 after a landing mishap 01

Grumman F4F-3 Wildcat VGF 26 Black 1026, 826, 1226 and 1326 Southern Solomon Islands c 1942 01

Grumman F4F-3 Wildcat VGF 26 Black 8x26 in Operation Torch marking 11942 01

Grumman F4F-3 Wildcat VMF 221 Black 22 at Midway 25th Jun 1942 01

Grumman F4F-3 Wildcat White F15 on patrol 01

Grumman F4F-3 Wildcat White F18 force landing 01

Grumman F4F-3 Wildcat White F22 in flight 01

Grumman F4F-3 Wildcat White F22 in flight circa 1942 43 01

Grumman F4F-3 Wildcat White F5 with early tail markings February 1942 01

Grumman F4F-4 Wildcat Black 16 and others waiting inline to take off 01

Grumman F4F-4 Wildcat Black 5 awating catapulting CVE-62 USS Natoma Bay 01

Grumman F4F-4 Wildcat Black 5 USS Suwanee late 1942 01

Grumman F4F-4 Wildcat Black 8, 5, 2 and 4 painted in the Atlantic scheme 01

Grumman F4F-4 Wildcat Black 9 landing mishap resulting in a fire 01

Grumman F4F-4 Wildcats Black 1G930 from CVE-1 USS Long Island June 1942 01

Grumman F4F-4 Wildcats from USS Ranger prior to Operation Tourch Nov 1942 01

Grumman F4F-4 Wildcats prepare for catapult lunching USS Long Island June 1942 01

Grumman F4F-4 Wildcats prepare for catapult lunching USS Long Island June 1942 02

Grumman F4F-4 Wildcats VFG 23 Black 23GF1 aboard CVE-30 USS Charger 01

Grumman F4F-4 Wildcats VMF 441 on Nanumea Airfield Ellice Islands 23rd Oct 1943 01

Grumman F4F-4 Wildcats VMF 441 on Nanumea Airfield Ellice Islands 23rd Oct 1943 02

Grumman F4F-4 Wildcat transfer from AKV 1 USS Kitty Hawk to CVE-1 USS Long Island Aug 1942 01

Grumman F4F-4 Wildcat tucked away under palm trees at Espirit Santo 01

Grumman F4F-4 Wildcat VC-12 Black 3 aboard CV-13 USS Core 1944 0A

Grumman F4F-4 Wildcat VCS 13 Black F9 painted in the Atlantic scheme CVE-13 USS Core 01

Grumman F4F-4 Wildcat VGF 26 Operation Torch ACV 26 USS Sangamon Nov 1942 01

Grumman F4F-4 Wildcat VMF 221 White 77 Lt James Elms Swett who sd 7 Val's over Tulagi 7th Apr 1943 01

Grumman F4F-4 Wildcat VMF 441 on Nanumea Airfield Ellice Islands 23rd Oct 1943 01

Grumman F4F-4 Wildcat White 7 being refueled before a storm hits 01

Wildcat Black 17 manpower is needed when winds blow across a carrier's flight deck 30th Apr 1944 01

Wildcat high lighted by the morning glory somewhere in the Atlantic 31st Aug 1943 01

Wildcat landing mishap but dont worry Tarzan to the rescue 01

Wildcat White F 15 pilot trying to use full aileron to avoid disaster 01

Chronology of the USN in WWII 1939 1940 1941 1942 1943 1944 1945

    Bibliography:

  •  

    Magazine References: +

  • Airfix Magazines (English) - http://www.airfix.com/
  • Avions (French) - http://www.aerostories.org/~aerobiblio/rubrique10.html
  • FlyPast (English) - http://www.flypast.com/
  • Flugzeug Publikations GmbH (German) - http://vdmedien.com/flugzeug-publikations-gmbh-hersteller_verlag-vdm-heinz-nickel-33.html
  • Flugzeug Classic (German) - http://www.flugzeugclassic.de/
  • Klassiker (German) - http://shop.flugrevue.de/abo/klassiker-der-luftfahrt
  • Le Fana de L'Aviation (French) - http://boutique.editions-lariviere.fr/site/abonnement-le-fana-de-l-aviation-626-4-6.html
  • Le Fana de L'Aviation (French) - http://www.pdfmagazines.org/tags/Le+Fana+De+L+Aviation/
  • Osprey (English) - http://www.ospreypublishing.com/
  • Revi Magazines (Czech) - http://www.revi.cz/

    Web References: +

  • History of RAF Organisation: http://www.rafweb.org
  • Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/

This webpage was updated 5th January 2017