The F8F is a
real climber and can go from a full brake stop to 10,000 feet in 96
seconds! It was designed during WWII for fleet defense to get off the
deck of the carrier, get into the sky quickly and counter the threat
from Kamikaze aircraft. Because of this more specialized role, the
Bearcat's range was limited. It was en route to the Pacific theater
when the war ended and did not see operational service in WWII. They
were used post-war by the US Navy until as late as 1952. There were 24
Navy Squadrons that flew the Bearcat. The French also purchased the
Bearcats and used them in Indochina. This aircraft is owned and
operated by the Southern California Wing of the Commemorative Air Force
In the first three
pictures, notice the unpainted panel behind the exhaust pipes. In the
first shot it is clean, after engine start, the panel becomes wet with
oil. You could watch it form in just a few seconds.
NOTE: These image are NOT public domain, there are all
copyrighted. See copyright notice below.
Copyright notice: All images on this site are copyright
Van Gilder Aviation Photography. Images are not to be
reproduced, electronically or in print without expressed written
consent. If you wish to use any of the photos on this website,
contact us via e-mail.