Consolidated TBY Sea Wolf
|TBY Sea Wolf|
|A production TBY-2|
|National origin||United States|
|First flight||22 December 1941|
|Primary user||United States Navy|
The Consolidated TBY Sea Wolf was a United States Navy torpedo bomber of World War II. A competitor and contemporary to the Grumman TBF Avenger, the Sea Wolf was subject to substantial delays and never saw combat; only 180 of the type were built before cancellation after VJ Day.
Design and development
The original design was not by Consolidated Aircraft, but rather by Vought, who designed the then XTBU-1 Sea Wolf to a 1939 US Navy requirement. The first prototype flew two weeks after Pearl Harbor. Its performance was deemed superior to the Avenger and the Navy placed an order for 1,000 examples.
Several unfortunate incidents intervened; the prototype was damaged in a rough arrested landing trial, and when repaired a month later was again damaged in a collision with a training aircraft. Once repaired again, the prototype was accepted by the Navy. However, by this time Vought was heavily overcommitted to other contracts, especially for the F4U Corsair fighter, and had no production capacity. It was arranged that Consolidated-Vultee would produce the aircraft (as the TBY), but this had to wait until the new production facility in Allentown, Pennsylvania, was complete, which took until late 1943.
The production TBYs were radar-equipped, with a radome under the right-hand wing. The first aircraft flew on 20 August 1944. By this time though, the Avenger equipped every torpedo squadron in the Navy, and there was no need for the Sea Wolf; in addition, numerous small problems delayed entry into service. Orders were cancelled after production started, and the 180 built were used for training.
- XTBU-1 Sea Wolf
- Prototype three-seat torpedo bomber powered by a R-2800-22 engine, one built.
- TBY-1 Sea Wolf
- Production variant of the XTBU-1, not built.
- TBY-2 Sea Wolf
- TBY-1 with an additional radar pod mounted under starboard-wing, 180 built, a further 920 were cancelled.
- TBY-3 Sea Wolf
- Improved variant, order for 600 cancelled, not built.
Specifications (TBY Sea Wolf)
- Crew: three
- Length: 39 ft 2 in (11.95 m)
- Wingspan: 56 ft 11 in (17.35 m)
- Height: 15 ft 6 in (4.72 m)
- Wing area: 440 ft² (40.88 m²)
- Empty weight: 11,366 lb (5,142 kg)
- Max. takeoff weight: 18,448 lb (8,386 kg)
- Powerplant: 1 × Pratt & Whitney R-2800-6 Double Wasp radial engine, 2,000 hp (1,491 kW)
- Bombs: Up to 2,000 lb (910 kg) of bombs or one torpedo
Aircraft of comparable role, configuration and era
- Aichi B7A
- Douglas TBD Devastator
- Douglas XTB2D Skypirate
- Fairey Barracuda
- Grumman TBF Avenger
- Nakajima B5N
- Nakajima B6N
- Hansen, Dave. "Vought TBU / Consolidated TBY Sea Wolf." daveswarbirds.com. Retrieved: 29 September 2010.
- Chant, Chris (2007). Aircraft of World War II: 300 of the World's Greatest Aircraft. Grange Books.
- Ginter, Steve, Bill Chana and Phil Prophett. Vought XTBU-1 & TBY-2 Sea Wolf (Naval Fighters number Thirty-Three). Simi Valley, CA: Ginter Books, 1995 . ISBN 0-942612-33-7.
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