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VF-74A "Skull & Bones" | Corsairs on the Midway (CVB-41) | WWII


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VF-74A F4U-4 Corsair
Skull & Bones

(Est 1 May 1945-15 Nov 1946) (became VF-43 Challengers)

Established as VF-74A at NAS Otis Field, Massachusetts, 1 May 1945, the squadron was redesignated VF-74 one 1 August 1945 with Skull & Bones as its nickname. Equipped with new F4U-4 Corsairs, the squadron went to see in November 1945 onboard Midway (CVB-41), making two more short cruises aboard Midway the following year. It was then redesignated VF-1B on 15 November 1946. (Naval Aviation News. September-October, 1995. Page 7.)



Embroidered on wool. 5" x 3-1/2".






F4U-4: The last variant to see action during World War II, deliveries to the U.S. Navy of the F4U-4 began late in 1944, and this version fully equipped naval squadrons four months before the end of hostilities. It had the 2,100 hp (1,600 kW) dual-stage-supercharged -18W engine. When the cylinders were injected with the water/alcohol mixture, power was boosted to 2,450 hp (1,830 kW). The aircraft required an air scoop under the nose and the unarmored wing fuel tanks of 62 gal (234 l) capacities were removed for better maneuverability at the expense of maximum range. The propeller was changed to a four blade type. Maximum speed was increased to 448 miles per hour (721 km/h) and climb rate to over 4,500 ft/min (1,180 m/min) as opposed to the 2,900 ft/min (884 m/min) of the F4U-1A] The "4-Hog" retained the original armament and had all the external load (i.e., drop tanks, bombs) capabilities of the F4U-1D. The windscreen was now flat bullet-resistant glass to avoid optical distortion, a change from the curved Plexiglas windscreens with the internal plate glass of the earlier Corsairs



F4U-4 Corsair






Midway (CVB-41)





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