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United States' Brewster F2A Buffalo fighter

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Brewster F2A Buffalo fighter:
United States' Brewster F2A Buffalo fighter
Brewster F2A Buffalo fighter:
United States' Brewster F2A Buffalo fighter
Brewster F2A Buffalo fighter:
United States' Brewster F2A Buffalo fighter
Brewster F2A-3 Buffalo fighter:
United States' Brewster F2A-3 Buffalo fighter
Aeronautics Aircraft Spotters' Handbook
Brewster F2A-3 Buffalo fighter:
United States' Brewster F2A-3 Buffalo fighter
Aeronautics Aircraft Spotters' Handbook
Brewster Buffalo fighter:
United States' Brewster Buffalo fighter
Brewster Buffalo RAAF fighter:
United States' Brewster Buffalo RAAF fighter
Brewster Buffalo RAAF fighter:
United States' Brewster Buffalo RAAF fighter
Brewster Buffalo RAAF fighter, November 19, 1941:
United States' Brewster Buffalo RAAF fighter, November 19, 1941
Brewster Buffalo Mk I fighter:
United States' Brewster Buffalo Mk I fighter
Brewster Buffalo Mk I fighter:
United States' Brewster Buffalo Mk I fighter
Brewster Buffalo Mk I fighter:
United States' Brewster Buffalo Mk I fighter
Brewster Buffalo Mk I fighter:
United States' Brewster Buffalo Mk I fighter

Design

The Brewster F2A Buffalo was the first monoplane fighter to be used by the United States Navy.1

The design of the XF2A-1 started in early 1936.3

Prototype

The XF2A-1 prototype first flew in December 1937.1,2,3 In June 1938 a contract was signed to build 54 F2A Buffalo.3

Production

  • Brewster XF2A-1: 12
  • Brewster F2A-1: 111,2
  • Brewster F2A-2: 431,2
  • Brewster F2A-3: 1081,2
  • Brewster B-239: 442
  • Brewster B-339: 2822
  • Brewster B-439: 202
  • Total: 5073, 5092
    • Manufacturer: Brewster Aeronautical Corporation3
    • Production: 1938 - March 19423

Variants

  • Brewster XF2A-1: Prototype.1
  • Brewster F2A-1: Production.1 Powered by Wright R-1820-34 radials (940 HP).1 First entered service in June 1939.2
  • Brewster F2A-2: Had new vertical tail surfaces.1,2 Better engine.3
  • Brewster F2A-3: Longer nose and additional armor protection.1,2,3
  • Brewster B-239: Land based export version to Finland.1
  • Brewster B-339: Had Wright GR-1820 Cyclone engines (1,100 HP).2 There were larger fuel tanks and increased armor.2
  • Brewster B-339B: Land based export version of the F2A-1 to Belgium.1,2
  • Brewster B-339D: Land based export version to F2A-1 Netherlands.1,2
  • Brewster B-339E / Brewster Buffalo Mk I: Land based export version to the United Kingdom.1,2
  • Brewster B-439: Export version of the F2A-3.1,2,4

Usage

The countries that used the F2A were Australia2, Belgium (40)3, Britain (1703)2, Finland2,3, Netherlands East Indies (723)2, New Zealand2, and United States2.

The VF-3 received the first eleven F2A Buffalos in June 1940 on the USS Saratoga.1

Withdrawn

After being operational for a few months the Buffalo was withdrawn from service and replaced by F4F Wildcats.3

Midway

The United States Marine Corps used F2As in the VMF-221 at Midway in 1942.1,3 13 of the 19 available were shot down.2

Finland

Finland ordered 44 B-239s.1

They were used with success against the Soviets from 1941 to 1944.2

Belgium

Belgium ordered 40 B-339Bs.1,2,3 38 of these were diverted to the United Kingdom.1,2,3

Netherlands

The Dutch ordered 72 B-339Ds.1,2

The Dutch East Indies was to receive 20 B-439s but these were delivered to the United States Air Corp.1,2 17 of these were sent to Australia.1,2

United Kingdom

The United Kingdom received 38 of the B-339Bs that were intended for the Belgians.1 They also received 170 B-339Es that were designated the Buffalo Mk I.1,2 Most of the Buffalos served with the Royal Air Force (RAF) and only a few served with the Royal Navy.2

Specifications

  Brewster F2A Buffalo
Type Naval fighter2
Land fighter2
Crew 12
Engine (Type)  
Cylinders  
Cooling  
HP  
Propeller blades  
Dimensions  
Span 35'2
10.67 m2
Length 26' 4"2
8.03 m2
Height 12' 1"2
3.68 m2
Wing area  
Weight  
Empty  
Normal load  
Maximum load  
Performance  
Speed  
Climb  
Service ceiling  
Range  
Armament  
Wings 2: 0.5" MG2
Nose 2: 0.5" MG2
  Brewster F2A-2 Buffalo
Type Naval fighter2
Land fighter2
Crew 12
Engine (Type) Wright R-1820-401,2
Cylinders Radial 92
Cooling  
HP 1,2002
Propeller blades 32
Dimensions  
Span  
Length  
Height  
Wing area  
Weight  
Empty  
Normal load  
Maximum load  
Performance  
Speed  
Climb  
Service ceiling  
Range  
Armament  
  Brewster F2A-3 Buffalo
Type Carrier fighter1, Fighter3,4
Crew 11,3
Engine (Type) 1: Wright Cyclone4
1: Wright R-1820-40 piston1,2,3
Cylinders Radial1,4, Radial 92,3
Cooling Air3
HP 1,2001,2,3,4
Propeller blades 32
Dimensions  
Span 35'1,3,4
10.67m1
Length 26' 2"4, 26' 4"1,3
8.02 m1
Height 12'3,4, 12' 1"1
3.68 m1
Wing area 208.9 ft2 1
19.41 m2 1
Weight  
Empty 4,732 lb1,2
2,146 kg1,2
Normal load 6,321 lb2, 6,440 lb4
2,867 kg2
Maximum load 7,159 lb1,2,3
3,247 kg1,2
Performance  
Speed 350 mph4
Speed @ 16,500'
5,030 m
321 mph1,2,3
516 kph1,2
Climb 2,290'/minute1,2
698 m/minute1,2
Service ceiling 32,300'1, 33,200'2,3
10,119 m2, 10,120 m1
Range 965 miles,1,2,3, 1,200 miles4
1,553 km2, 1,650 km1
Armament 4: MG3,4
Wings 2: 12.7 mm Browning MG1
Nose 2: 12.7 mm Browning MG1
Bombs 2: 100 lb4

Sources:

  1. Fighting Aircraft of World War II, Editor: Karen Leverington, 1995
  2. Aircraft of WWII, Stewart Wilson, 1998
  3. World War II Airplanes Volume 2, Enzo Angelucci, Paolo Matricardi, 1976
  4. Aeronautics Aircraft Spotters' Handbook, Ensign L. C. Guthman, 1943
20th Century American Military History Crucial Site

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