Designed by the Chance-Vought Aircraft Corporation of Stratford, CT in 1939 the prototype XF4U-1 Corsair first flew on 29 May 1940 and in October 1940 became the first U.S. production aircraft to exceed 400 mph in level flight. Built to provide clearance for a massive 13- foot 4-inch diameter propeller, the Corsair’s most distinctive feature is its inverted gull wing. Accepted by the Navy as a carrier based fighter, problems with the landing gear and tail hook delayed Corsairs operating from ships until later in the war. Marine squadrons used Corsairs to great effect when flying from land bases in the South Pacific. Most famous among these was Major Gregory “Pappy” Boyington’ s VMF-112 “Black Sheep” Squadron based at Espiritu Santo.
Corsairs deployed in the Pacific Theater were superior to the Japanese Zero and by the end of the war had maintained an 11-to-1 kill ratio. The Corsair proved to be one of the most effective American combat aircraft and was the only piston-engine fighter to be produced in large numbers after the end of WWII. Over 12,500 Corsairs were produced between 1940 and 1945 by Chance-Vought, Goodyear Aircraft of Akron, OH, and the Brewster Aircraft Company of Johnsville, PA.
Accepted into Navy inventory on 26 May 1945 the Goodyear FG-1D Corsair on display did not see combat. It was initially assigned to a maintenance squadron for training mechanics then to a variety of Naval, Naval Reserve, and Marine Reserve Squadrons in California, Florida, New York, Arizona, and Ohio. Stricken from Navy inventory in 1955 with only 1533 flying hours this Corsair was scheduled to be scrapped.
Saved from the smelter in 1958 by Ed Maloney of the Planes of Fame Museum, 92132 sat outside along Route 66 in Claremont, CA as a roadside advertisement for Maloney’s fledgling museum. In 1973, 92132 was purchased by David Tallichet and in 1975 his mechanics had returned it to airworthy condition. 92132 was used extensively in the “Baa Baa Black Sheep” television series and “Black Sheep Squadron” Hollywood movie. Later purchased by Henry “Butch” Schroeder of Danville, IL and then by the Tri-State Warbird Museum this Corsair has been in storage since 1977.
Bureau Number: 92132 | Tail: N3466G
Vought / Goodyear
May 29, 1940
Engine: Pratt & Whitney R-2800-8W Double Wasp 18 cylinder twin-row radial
Max Speed: 425 mph at 19,900 ft
Horsepower: 2,250 on takeoff
Armament: 6 wing mounted .50 caliber machine guns, 2 x 1,000 lb bombs, 8 x 5-inch rockets
Wingspan: 41 ft
Length: 33 ft, 4 in
Height: 16 ft, 1 in
Max Weight: 13,120 lbs
Service Ceiling: 36,900 ft
Max Range: 1,560 miles with external drop tanks
Fuel Capacity: 273 gallons (internal), 537 with drop tanks