Yes, turned sort of a major shift in the cycle from the European theater of the Pacific Ocean. But what to do, our history of war in the Pacific had been neglected, Zaruba and there's the sea, that the air was terrible.
Our current participant was born before the war, at 1939 year, when undertaken in the US, and very serious, for re naval aviation. anticipated, that instead of frankly outdated aircraft comes a new generation of sea-based aircraft F4U «Le Corsaire", F6F "Hellket" and SB2C «Helldayver".
But with the rearmament got totally wrong, as planned, and 1941, the year the US naval aviation met about the same, Hoping BBC RKKA. That is, in a "process of re", that is in full disarray.
But with regards to torpedo it was definitely one thing is clear: Douglas TBD-1 "Devastator" should be sent into retirement, because it clearly all.
And at the end 1939 the US Navy strained aviation companies purchase new torpedo. The requirements were quite acceptable for the time: the crew of three men, full speed 480 kmh. Arming of one of the torpedo or by three bombs 500 pounds have to be placed inside the fuselage, the plane had to be self locking fuel tanks, armor, and a turret with defensive arms on the servo.
Many proposals have been, but the Navy liked only two projects, from "Vought» and «Grumman». These prototypes have been built and handed over to the test.
At all, "Grumman" until that time did not bombers, or torpedo, but it was the main supplier of fighters for the Navy, of FF-1 to F4F «Uayldket». Probably, not surprising, that the torpedo-bomber has acquired some of the characteristics of the family F4F. This fat man with the air-cooled engine and a fairly thick belly, where to hide weapons.
Fuselage get high, But the place it was enough for all, from the rear to the bottom bombootseka defensive shooting point immediately after. Internal bomb bay was a novelty for marine bombers, but the plane of the "Grumman" even exceeded requirements, put forward by the United States Navy: it was possible to place a torpedo weighing 2000 pounds or four bombs 500 pounds.
The crew of three people: pilot, radio operator and gunner. All housed in a long cabin, closed lantern. At the end of the cabin was shooting turret Olsen system with electric.
Rifle turret Olsen was a very interesting design. She is, actually, It was a separate module with weapons, controls and ammunition, sheltered plexiglass spherical cap at the rear of the cockpit. Yes, there is still a set of towers included and arrows.
The shooter was armed habitual already 12.7 mm "Browning" and sat in an armored seat, protected armor plates in half-inch thick, installed in the front of the turret and its sides, inch armor plate and under the seat panel and one-half inch thick of armored glass immediately before it.
He ruled the pinnacle of one-joystick on the horizon and the height, on the handle and the machine gun was lowering drive. Actuates the turret motors, is powered by an onboard network of the aircraft.
The rest of mechanization, cleaning mechanism rack chassis, folding outer wing panels, flaps and the flaps open bomb bay - all has operated hydraulics.
The firm "Grumman" designed airplane wings so, they evolved, turning back, and occupies a position on either side of the fuselage parallel to it. This was done in order to solve the problem of insufficient height hangar decks of aircraft carriers, where I had to push quite a higher plane.
Thanks to the hydraulic drive wings could be removed or spread out in a few seconds by the pilot, and it did not require any help the ground staff. by the way, it has become one of the components of victory "Grumman" competition.
Another helpful factor was, that as the bomber "Grumman" could even dive. Not as a normal dive bomber, but pretty well. The role of the air brakes were playing pretty well landing gear, that reduced the rate of released state until 300 kmh.
The aircraft has successfully passed all tests and was put into production. Since the end of the test comes at a time, following the attack on Pearl Harbor, the aircraft was given the name Evendjer.
The first serial TBF-1 came off the assembly line 3 January 1942 year and 30 January, After completion of factory testing and acceptance flight, the aircraft was officially handed over to the US Navy.
by the way, "Avenger" was one of the first planes, received radar. The radar is installed in "Avenger" in the first year of its manufacture. Yagi antenna radar "air - surface type B" (PLEASE) It was mounted under each wing on its external panels. Needless radar equipment was installed in the radio operator's compartment, ASB was the standard radar radar, which supplies all the options "Avengers".
The first combat use of the "Avengers" can not be called successful. Of the first 21 crew, which were based at Pearl Harbor, six were selected and sent to Midway, under threat of Japanese attack. Midway went on volunteers, although in general, all members of the twenty-one crew expressed readiness to fly to Midway.
4 June 1942 , shortly after dawn, the flying boat "Catalina" has found a Japanese invasion fleet, heading for Midway.
AT 05.45 Six armed torpedoes TBF-1 took off and moved to the Japanese ships. Goals have been found around 7 am, and "Avenger" went on the attack in the invasion fleet.
regrettably, but torpedo attack was thwarted patrol fighters with Japanese aircraft carrier. "Avenger", had no fighter escort, They dived into the water and continued the flight to the enemy ships at low level flight, but 5 of 6 aircraft were shot down A6M2 "Zero" and not even able to reset the torpedoes.
Considering this, combat debut "Avengers" can not be called successful. Nevertheless, within two months all US carriers, which were torpedo squadron, We received the "Avenger", and the "Devastator" was written off.
So "Avenger" started his service in the Navy, but at the same time the problems started. By the end 1942 year "Grumman" on his plant produces 60 machines per month, but given, any strenuous battles took place in the Pacific Ocean, Navy demanded more aircraft to replace the knocked down and heavily damaged.
But more 'Grumman' release just could not, the firm was but "Avengers" was heavily loaded production of the F4F "Uayldket" and is ready to transition to the production of the next generation of maritime fighter - F6F "Hellket".
In this regard, it was decided an interesting solution: find a subcontractor to produce torpedo.
The choice fell on ... "General Motors", which by then had significantly reduced the production of passenger cars and closed several plants. That is enough production space.
Probably, in «GM» leadership was very much surprised, when the leadership of the United States Navy has arranged a meeting with "Grummanom" for aircraft production.
As a result, the Eastern branch of the aviation company "General Motors" has been organized, who eventually won the release of aircraft. East aviation branch produced TVM-1 "Avenger", a «Grumman" produced TBF-1 "Avenger", aircraft were absolutely identical, and they can be distinguished, Only by comparing the serial numbers. All the difference was only in the room but the names of the letters.
TO 1945 Aviation branch, the East has reached a phenomenal figure - 350 aircraft per month. Record month of production TBM began in March 1945 of the year, when East aviation branch built 400 aircraft thirty days.
"Grumman" eventually switched to the production of fighter F6F "Hellket", and December 1943 , the Eastern branch became the sole manufacturer of "Avengers". Before the war, the branch has made a total of 7546 TVM, or 77% percent of all manufactured "Avengers".
so, "Avenger" started fighting. And the very first battles showed, that armed with torpedo, to put it mildly, Not really. It initially was not very: a turret Olsen 12.7mm gun, shoot back, and was placed under the engine bonnet synchronized 7.62 mm machine gun.
The Japanese quickly realized this and began to walk easily to the frontal attacks. Considering, samurai is played very quietly, the real trouble began for Americans.
The solution was found engineers from the 10th squadron of torpedo (VT-10), that in the field could establish 12.7mm gun with ammunition and a synchronizing mechanism outside the root portion of each wing of the aircraft.
This field modification was quite successful, and drawings of the project were sent to the design department "Grumman". There is a project of military engineers has been improved so, guns that have started to establish within each wing, outside the area, swept propeller, which allowed to do without synchronizers. 7,62-mm gun from the bonnet removed.
second, necessitating revision, turned torpedo. Standard US naval aviation torpedo, Mk 13, was too slow and unreliable, so often attacks "Avengers" proved unsuccessful due to malfunctioning torpedoes. Plus the slow speed torpedo enemy ships running allowed to perform evasive maneuvers.
It has been carried out numerous improvements, which basically reduced to increase the height and torpedoes reset airspeed of resetting, It is already an achievement, because it is very much increased the chances of survival torpedo crews.
But the "Avengers" and often used as a conventional bomber. In quite a large bomb-torpedootsek quite well placed and 2,000-pound (900 kg) Universal bomb «General Purpose», and 1,600-pound (725 kg) armor-piercing bomb «Armor Percing». It was possible to use smaller bombs caliber.
When attacking the ship maneuvering, the tactics of "Avengers" was reset "packet", which included up to four bombs, using intervalometer - Instrument, which manipulated variable time interval between reset bombs.
Remote control intervalometer was installed in a compartment of the radio operator and the radio operator to manually installed therein airspeed "Avenger" and the desired spacing between the discharge bombs.
The purpose of attack in a dive at an angle of 30 to 45 degrees, to a height 500 ft or less.
The pilot dropped bombs on the output from the peak and thanks Intervalometer bombs went into the goal at intervals of 60 to 75 feet, that practically guarantee one or more hits in a goal when you reset "packet" of the four bombs. This tactic, It has proven to be highly effective, and "Avengers" earned a reputation aptly Bomber Aircraft.
Held "Avenger" and how anti-submarine aircraft. I had to use them as antisubmarine aircraft, because Doenitz guys have really got British allies, and actually had something to do with submarines, because only in February 1943 , the German submarines were sent to the bottom of the vessels more 600 000 tons displacement.
Often divers Doenitz went so far into the ocean, that the basic patrol aircraft could not get them. Then the "Avenger" together with the "Wildcat" has registered on the decks of escort (converted from bulk carriers mainly) aircraft carrier.
With a large radius of action and having the ability to carry four depth bombs in the bomb bay on 350 pounds, "Avenger" proved to be a highly effective anti-submarine aircraft.
AT 1943 year, attempts were made to equip the "Avenger" ASD-1 radar. To do this on a plane placed dish parabolic antenna radome, mounted on the front edge of the right wing. ASD radar was able to detect, as ground, and air targets at a much greater distance, what it could do the old radar ASB.
In addition to the installed radar fairing ASD-1 series of TBF / TBM-1D carried additional radar antenna yagi, mounted on each wing, immediately after the main gear racks.
There was also an interesting field modification, "Night owl". They were nocturnal hunters submarines. Since it is usually at night the submarine surfaced to recharge batteries, the search for them was too easy at night.
Such aircraft was disassembled rifle turret, wing machine guns and all reservations. The fuselage bomb bay and additional fuel tanks installed, which significantly increased the duration of the flight of the "Avengers".
The crew of "Night Owl" consisted of the pilot and radar operator, "Owl" could take off and fly over the sunset over the sea all night. If the crew of "Owls" showed submarine, is it on the radio have imposed a normal plane.
Tactics has been very successful, and by the end of the war 14 antisubmarine aircraft carrier groups, operating in the Atlantic, sank a total of 53 German U-boats and captured one - U-505. In the Pacific, progress has been modest, there 8 ASW groups escort carrier sunk 11 Japanese submarines.
Worked "Avenger" and the Royal Air Force. 958 cars of all modifications were delivered to Britain under the Lend-Lease. The British planes were called «Tarpon / Avenger Mk I» to 1944 of the year, when the "Tarpon" have been renamed back to "Avenger", to not to make confusion with the joint actions of allies in the Pacific.
With "Avengers" have been carried out numerous experiments on equipping its radar technology. When experts "Grumman" managed to push in the nose of the APS-20 radar, and in place of the radio operator to organize two (!) places for operators (removing the turret rifle and making a huge lantern), then turned TBM-3W, in fact the plane early radar detection, allows you to "see" even airplanes, Running on low-level flight at a height of 100-150 m.
In this role, "Avenger" served in the Navy United States until the mid 50s.
The campaign in the Pacific Avenger "was first seriously proved themselves in battle in the Solomon Islands, when torpedoes (not clear exactly, At least one, maximum of three) with "Avengers" in the engine room I was struck by the aircraft carrier "Ryuji". Then he finished off bombs, that left a Japanese squadron (stronger in composition) without air cover. The Americans were able to move, and the Japanese, fear of air raids during the day, did not actively pursue.
8 November 1942 Guadalcanal, in the area there was a sea battle with the Japanese squadron, Planted troops to the island, in which the Americans lost two light cruisers and four destroyers. Japanese losses were much more modest, two destroyers, and was seriously damaged by shells and bombs battlecruiser "Hiei", He tries to leave the battlefield and go in for repair, but the torpedo in the engine room rather slow its course.
The next morning, nine "Avengers" aircraft carrier "Enterprise" cruiser caught and sent to the bottom. A little bit later, 14 November, another group "Avengers" planted four torpedo the heavy cruiser "Kinugasa ', that the ship has proved more than adequate for, to drown.
During the Battle of the Philippine Sea (19-24 June 1944 of the year) on the decks of US aircraft carrier (seven and eight drum escort) was 194 "Avenger". During this operation, they took part in the sinking of the aircraft carrier "Hajo" and seriously damaged the aircraft carrier "Chiyoda" and "Zuykaku". But this time, "Everndzhery" worked as bombers, 227-kg bombs instead torpedoes. The operation can hardly be called successful, because the total loss of the aircraft exceeded 200 machines.
But 24 October 1944 torpedo "Avengers" played a crucial role in the sinking of superlinkora "Musashi". 19 torpedo - and the beauty and pride of the Japanese fleet rested kilometer depth in the Sibuyan Sea.
«Musasi» under the bombs
why torpedoes? because, that the bomb could not cause any major damage superbly armored giant. In the same battle got about two dozen bombs in the "Yamato", and except for minor injuries could not do anything.
truly, large ship, if not most of the torpedo, the large number of ordinary.
«Yamato» and «Musasi» - the pride of the Japanese Navy
how 7 April 1945 year happened with the "Yamato". 10 torpedoes - it 10 torpedo, and the flagship of the Japanese fleet left behind sister ship in the history of ...
Last picture «Yamato»
Generally, with varying degrees of success, "Avenger" provoevali the war and in all theaters of war. Pacific Ocean, Atlantic, Mediterranean, even North, where the two hunted squadron (true, unsuccessfully) for "Tirpittsem». In short, swim where British and American aircraft carriers, there were "Avenger".
On the whole, it was very well-balanced airplane, virtually no weaknesses. And a very strong.
His versatility was the key to long life. Though as a torpedo bomber he quickly went from the arena, but as the aircraft radar detection and fire served a very long time.
So in the end not to mention the incident, which still dominates the minds of, whose main character was "Avenger". clear, probably, that we are talking about the incident 5 December 1945 years in the Bermuda Triangle.
On this day, five crews had to perform a routine training flight from Fort Lauderdale.
Leading aircraft managed by an experienced pilot, Lieutenant Charles Taylor, but the crew did not have the experience of flying over the sea. At the appointed time, the aircraft did not return to base. It was taken only a radio pilots, which it said about their loss of orientation. Rescue operation was made, which, but, brought no result. In addition, in the course of its lost one of taking part in it flying boats - "Martin Mariner".
The riddle remains unsolved disappearances of aircraft still, but all indications are, that the reason was severe weather conditions in the vicinity of the flight path and the magnetic storm, which could lead to a denial-board instrumentation. Under such conditions, the aircraft could easily crash into the surface of the ocean and drown. Although many still think cause of death of the aircraft supernatural, but this has nothing to do.
modifying characteristics TBM-3:
Wingspan, m: 16,51
Length, m: 12,16
Height, m: 5,02
wing area, m: 45,52
- empty aircraft: 4 913
- normal take-off: 7 609
- maximum take-off: 8286
Engine: 1 х Wright R-2600-20 Cyclone 14 x 1900 HP.
full speed, kmh
- on high: 444
- the land: 404
Cruising speed, kmh: 243
practical range, km: 1 626
Ckoropodemnost, m / min: 630
Service ceiling, m: 7090
Crew, people: 3
- two wing 12.7mm gun, one 12.7mm in dorsal gun turret and one 7.62-mm machine gun in ventral position;
- to 907 kg of weapons in the bomb bay and attachment points for Nursi, discharged tanks or containers with or radar guns under the wing.
/Roman Skomorokhov, topwar.ru/