The Men Who Flew the Vought F4U Corsair (Kindle)
First flown in 1940, the prototype Vought F4U Corsair instantly became the fastest fighter in the world and the fastest US aircraft of any description. Powered by a huge 18-cylinder Pratt and Whitney Double Wasp engine driving an enormous 13 feet 4 inch propeller, the first Corsairs were capable of 417mph. This figure would rise to nearly 450mph in later versions despite the fact that fuel load and overall weight was increased.
Production began in 1941, not only by Vought but also by Goodyear and Brewster. The F4U entered service with the US Navy in September 1942, although carrier-borne operations were initiated a little later not by the Americans but by the British Fleet Air Arm. The aircraft subsequently came to be extensively used from land and sea by the US Marines, Royal Navy and Royal New Zealand Air Force. Famous squadrons like VMF-214 'The Black Sheep’ and VF-17 ‘Jolly Rogers’, along with many others, maintained total ascendancy over the Japanese for the rest of the war - a remarkable achievement for a single type.
After the Second World War, the Corsair stayed in production and was used with distinction by the French in Indo-China and again by the US Navy in Korea. Since then Corsairs have achieved significant success in air races and more and more are being restored to fly for museums and warbird enthusiasts the world over.
Martin Bowman’s comprehensive new book combines technical information and detailed development history with a fascinating combat history told, in many cases, by the Second World War pilots themselves. Well researched, readable and illustrated with dozens of rare and previously unpublished photographs, The Men Who Flew the Vought F4U Corsair is the perfect book for any fan of the ‘bent wing bird’.
I'm pretty sure I had an Airfix model of this plane when I was a teenager - a beautiful looking aircraft - Martin Bowman's appreciation of it is comprehensive and readable...Books Monthly
I have to admit from the start here that I was looking forward to this book, especially after reading the book Thunderbolts over Burma. I just think that the plane is underrated and I just love the movement, its style and the way it looks, and at nearly 450mph this US plane is one of the fastest planes of World War Two. Really this plane although it came out later than the Spitfire was on a par with it and was the American version of the Spitfire, utilizing speed, manoeuvrability and strength. The book is great in that it highlights all of these benefits and it is duplicated with stories of the pilots, those that flew it. The book can get a little technical but the author has not let this dominate the book choosing to emphasise the stories and tales of all involved with this plane.UK Historian
I have thoroughly enjoyed reading this book, and found it fascinating from start to finish. Well written and told by the author certainly a good book for anyone interested in fast planes and warfare.
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Bowman's comprehensive book combines technical information and detailed development history with a fascinating combat history told, in many cases, by the Second World War pilots themselves.Bookseller Buyers Guide