Grumman F7F Tigercat vs. de Havilland Sea Hornet

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by gjs238, Oct 26, 2015.

  1. gjs238

    gjs238 Well-Known Member

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    Which was the better choice for naval operations?

    According to the Wikipedia article on the F7F:
    In 1945, two Tigercats, serialled TT346 and TT349, were evaluated, but rejected, by the British Royal Navy, preferring a navalized version of the de Havilland Hornet.[11]
     
  2. wheelsup_cavu

    wheelsup_cavu Well-Known Member

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    Considering British carriers were smaller than our fleet carriers I would think the size and weight of each aircraft played a part in the choice. Plus they chose a domestic plane over a foreign built one which would keep workers employed in a critical industry.

    Hornet: Empty weight: 11,292 lb (5,122 kg)
    Tigercat: Empty weight: 16,270 lb (7,380 kg)


    Wheels
     
  3. Juha

    Juha Well-Known Member

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    Hello wheels, the weights you gave are for Hornet F.1 (landplane), Sea Hornet F 20 was significantly heavier, Empty 6033 kg. And the Tigercat weight is for the 2-seat NF. What killed the Tigercat in the eyes of the RN was its single-engine handling in landing configuration, it was seen as unacceptable for carrier ops and at least early on the USN agreed.
     
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  4. GregP

    GregP Well-Known Member

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    The Tigercat handles great now. All the guys who fly them love them, single engine or not.

    Here is the prototype and a later F7F Notice the difference in the vertical tails:

    Tigercat_Prototype.jpg
     
  5. Juha

    Juha Well-Known Member

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    Hello Greg
    did the USN used any other version that F7F-4N? IIRC all earlier versions were used only by the Marines.
     
  6. GregP

    GregP Well-Known Member

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    Good question, Juha. As far as I know, only the F74F-4N was ever certified for carrier service and the rest were land-based. I KNOW many went to the Marines but am not really sure if the Navy operated any others as land-based aircraft. I can say I have never been able to locate any that were Navy-operated as land-based aircraft.

    That doesn't preclude an odd example from being used for test or experimental purposes, but I have not been able to find a record of it to date.

    I have seen 4 of them up close and personal and two were restored as Navy planes, one as a Marine aircraft, and the other one was painted overall black and was seen for a long time as "Big Bossman" when owned by Mike Brown. I think that one is now "Bad Kitty," but could be wrong there. I THINK Rod Lewis changed their names a few times when he bought them from Mike Brown. Altogether very cool airplanes.
     
  7. fastmongrel

    fastmongrel Well-Known Member

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    Same thing happened to the Hornet. The prototype was nasty with an engine out.

    de_havilland_Hornet_large.jpg havilland_hornet_2.jpg
     
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  8. WJPearce

    WJPearce Active Member

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    Just to clarify, as it is confusing...
    Big Bossman (BuNo 80503 / N805MB) was renamed by Lewis as El Jefe, then renamed again as La Patrona and painted silver.
    Here Kitty Kitty (BuNo 80390 / N700F) is also owned by Lewis and retains the same name (last I heard).
    Bad Kitty (BuNo 80483 / N6178C) is part of the Historic Flight Foundation in WA.
     
  9. buffnut453

    buffnut453 Well-Known Member

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    #9 buffnut453, Oct 28, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2015
    Hate to say this but I'd go with the Tigercat due to its air cooled engines - fewer nasty chemicals to store aboard the mother ship.
     
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  10. GregP

    GregP Well-Known Member

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    I believe you are correct about the Tigercat names. We see enough of them at the museum that they sort of run together. Which is pretty neat since I love the aircraft. It has animlal magnetism in person. Been in several, but havent flown in one yet. Hope to.
     
  11. gumbyk

    gumbyk Well-Known Member

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    We're not going for that debate again, are we??? :lol:
     
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