Skypirate what if....

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by R Pope, Mar 25, 2013.

  1. R Pope

    R Pope Member

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    If the XTB2D had been produced and accepted for service, would it have been more useful in Korea and even 'Nam than the AD? Or was it a case of "bigger ain't always better?"
     
  2. GregP

    GregP Well-Known Member

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    #2 GregP, Mar 25, 2013
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2013
    The Douglas XB2D Skypirate was a dedicated torpedo bomber and I don't think we had a use for a torpedo bomber in Korea or Vietnam. Both of those conflicts were basically land-based. Also, the Skypirate was too big for some WWII carrier decks and would have required more modern, larger carriers of the Muidway and Essex class. Even today, we don't really have a need for a torpedo bomber ...

    I don't really see the Skypirate as ever being accepted into US service unless the Japanese or Germans had suddenly come up with new fleets that would result in major Naval battles from 1945 onward. The design was needed in 1939 when it commenced but, by the time the article flew, the main fleets of the Axis had been defeated and only remnants were left to track down. The AD was an attack plane that could be launched from land or from carriers. I daresay it might be adapted to carry a torpedo, but was basically an attack bomber. I think the rivals for the Skyraider were the Martin Mauler, Curtiss XBTC, and Kaiser-Fleetwings XBTK. They all competed for the same contract.
     
  3. Capt. Vick

    Capt. Vick Well-Known Member

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    I always thought the Skypirate would have made a great target and not much else...
     
  4. GregP

    GregP Well-Known Member

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    Hi Cap,

    It was certainly big enough to be one, but curiously was decently fast at 340 mph. Well ... fast relative to other torpedo bombers anyway. It would have made a tougher target than, say, a Dauntless ... but was 100+mph slower than potential fighter opponents.

    That assumes,. of course, that both the Skypirate and the opposing fighter were going all-out when they encountered each other. Most likely, neither would be and the Skypirate probably cruised at something like 170 mph or so ... and maybe would have been a really good target, but not for long. They only made 2 so the slaughter would have been brief. :)
     
  5. fastmongrel

    fastmongrel Well-Known Member

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    Uuh the Skypirate is an ugly brute. It also looks like it manouvered like a 5 storey building.
     
  6. GregP

    GregP Well-Known Member

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    Some might call the concept of maneuvering like a 5 story building ... "stable."
     
  7. fastmongrel

    fastmongrel Well-Known Member

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    Until someone starts throwing supersonic lumps of metal at you :lol:
     
  8. Capt. Vick

    Capt. Vick Well-Known Member

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    Agree! :lol: But keep in mind, rarely does a plane get faster (all things being the same eg engine) when it goes into operation. The weight of extra equipment and the like. Hard for me to imagine something with that wing going that fast.
     
  9. GregP

    GregP Well-Known Member

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    I don't like the Skypirate, but LOVE the Skyraider. Maybe it is because of their performance in a previously little-known Southeast Asian country called Viet Nam. The Sandy's were awsome! Nothing like it if you were pinned down and needed accurate fire to keep the enemy's heads down. A skyraider could render a large portion of jungle very inhospitable.

    It well might have been devestating in Europe in a square field with hedgerows along the sides. One Skyraider could have taken out an entire farmer's field and still could have had another 3,000 pounds of bombs hanging there waiting for someone to show his head .. and could have had a full set of 20 mmm waiting for an unsuspecting quarry in the air or on the ground.

    First flight as March 1945 and if the war had dragged on, it would have rapidly come into service. As it was, with the peacetime slow-down, it didn't make service until 1946 ... but COULD have if the war had not ended, dropping the priority for rapid deployment.
     
  10. stug3

    stug3 Active Member

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    Skyraiders attacked the Hwachon Dam in 1951 using bombs and Mk.13 torpedoes.
    [​IMG]

    Attack on Hwachon Dam May 1, 1951
    [​IMG]
     
  11. GregP

    GregP Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Stug!

    I always knew it was a superb attack bomber, but was not really aware of torpedo-carrying capability ... probably because it never USED that capability very often when I was an adult. It is useful to remember that military equipment can be configured to attach to a wide variety of SERs, MERs, and TERs. That's single, multiple (two), and tripple ejection racks for you guys who are wondering.

    In Viet Nam, most Sandys had MERs or TERs on them and could carry an amazing amount of ordnance around ... and were pretty darned good at oblitterating a target with it or keeping the enemy from showing an eyelash for fear of a Sandy being overhead with same. They could dive vertically and hit whatever they wanted to hit, with 3 BIG speed brakes deployed. If anybody shot at one ... his buddies orbiting overhead were VERY displeased and made it known quickly and explosively.

    NOBODY wanted 4 to 8 or more angry Skyraider pilots overhead, even if he had a division around him. It could quickly become a squad or less. If SAMs showed up, the Sandys went away for a few minutes and the Wild Weasels killed the SAMs ... unless the Sakyraiders did ... and the Sandys returned madder than before, still with ordnance to drop and 20 mmm to use. Many times bullets from the bad guys would just stop when Skyraiders were around.
     
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