GRUMMAN F6F HELLCAT

HELLCAT SERVICE

Manufacturer: The Grumman Aircraft Engr. Corp., Bethpage, Long Is., New York, USA
Models: G-50; G-54, G-59, G-60, G-61, G-69
Designations: F6F; FV
Name: Hellcat
First official flight: (XF6F-1) 26/06/1942
Factory production period: 1942 - 1945
Primary service period: 1943 - 1954
Last official flight: (F6F-5D / -5K) 05/1961

HELLCAT VARIANTS

1942 Model G-50 XF6F-1 1  
1942 Model G-50 XF6F-3 1 Total: 00002
         
1942 Model G-50 F6F-3 4402 Total: 04402
         
1944 Model G-50 F6F-5 6341  
1944 Model G-50 F6F-5N 1529 Total: 07870

Grand Total: 12274

HELLCAT PRODUCTION

XF6F-1
Prototype carrier-based fighter, large
prop spinner. Later with engine upgrade,
re-serialled as BuNo. 02982, redesignated
as XF6F-3.
Produced 1942

Grumman Bethpage, New York (F)

BuNo.02981 3188

Total: 00001

XF6F-3
Ordered as XF6F-1, then XF6F-2, again
redesignated after engine upgrade. Later
re-serialled as BuNo. 02981. Later
converted as the XF6F-4.
Produced 1942

Grumman Bethpage, New York (F)

BuNo.02982 3189

Total: 00001

F6F-3
As XF6F-3, 6 wing guns, drop tank, prop spinner
deleted, redesigned u/c, folding wings. Later
airframes had engine upgrade, minor changes.
229 as F6F-3N night-fighter with radar upgrade.
Produced 1942 - 1944

Grumman Bethpage, New York (F)

BuNo.04775 / 04958 ?  
BuNo.08798 / 09047 ?  
BuNo.25721 / 26195 ?  
BuNo.39999 / 43136 ?  
BuNo.65890 / 66244 ?

Total: 04402

FV-1 - Canadian-Vickers built version of the F6F-3, orders cancelled.
F6F-4 - 1943, proposed light-weight version, cancelled.

F6F-5
As late F6F-3, strengthened airframe, new cowling,
redesigned canopy glass, underwing rockets / bombs.
Later airframes had 4 wing guns and 2 cannons.
Some later converted to F6F-5N.
Produced 1944 - 1945 

Grumman Bethpage, New York (F)

BuNo.58000 / 58999 ?  
BuNo.69992 / 71462 ?  
BuNo.77259 / 80258 ?  
BuNo.93652 / 94521 ?

Total: 06341

630 additional airframes cancelled.

F6F-5N
As F6F-5, night-fighter version with APS-6 radar. 
Additional airframes converted from F6F-5.
Produced 1944 - 1945

Grumman Bethpage, New York (F)

BuNo.71463 / 72991 ?

Total: 01529

1047 additional airframes cancelled.

Model G-54, G-59,
G-60, G-61, G-69 - Proposed designs and upgrades, all cancelled.

Grand Total: 12274

HELLCAT CONVERSIONS

US Navy

XF6F-2 1 F6F-3(66244), 1944, prototype with turbo-supercharger, 4-bladed prop.
Later back to F6F-3 standard, delivered as BuNo. 43137.
F6F-3E 18 F6F-3, 1943, night-fighter conversions with wing mounted APS-4 radar.
F6F-3F 1 F6F-3, experimental engine upgrade.
F6F-3K 1+ F6F-3, 1946, conversions to radio controlled drones.
XF6F-3N 1 F6F-3, 1943, prototype factory conversion, night-fighter with ASP-6 radar.
228 F6F-3N production aircraft followed.
F6F-3P 1+ F6F-3, photo reconnaissance conversions.
XF6F-4 1 XF6F-1(02981), 1942-1946, engine / 4 cannon armament upgrade.
F6F-5D 1+ F6F-5, 1949-1961, conversions as drone directors.
F6F-5E 1+ F6F-5, night-fighter conversions with wing mounted APS-4 radar.
F6F-5K 1+ F6F-5 / -5N, 1949-1961, conversions to radio controlled drones.
F6F-5P 1+ F6F-5, photo reconnaissance conversions.
XF6F-6 2 F6F-5(70188, 70913), 1944, engine upgrade, 4-bladed prop.

British Royal Navy
Original name was Gannet, changed to Hellcat in 1943.

Hellcat Mk. I 252 F6F-3, 1943-1945, aircraft in service with the Royal Navy.
Assigned RN s/n: FN320 / FN449, JV100 / JV221.
Hellcat Mk. II 849 F6F-5, 1944-1945, aircraft in service with the Royal Navy.
Assigned RN s/n: JV222 / JV324, JW700 / JW784,
JW857 / JW899, JX670 / JX964, JX968 / JX999,
JZ775 / JZ827, JZ912 / JZ946, JZ960 / JZ964,
JZ968 / JZ994, KD118 / KD152, KD158 / KD160,
KE118 / KE159, KE170 / KE214, KE220 / KE265.
Conversions: FR.Mk. II, PR.Mk. II.
Hellcat NF.Mk. II 76 F6F-5N, 1944-1945, night-fighter version for the Royal Navy.
Assigned RN s/n: JX965 / JX967, JZ890 / JZ911,
JZ947 / JZ959, JZ965 / JZ967, JZ995 / JZ999,
KD108 / KD117, KD153 / KD157, KE160 / KE169,
KE215 / KE219.

FOREIGN MILITARY SERVICE
 - F6F's in service post WW2 with Argentina, France, Paraguay
   and Uruguay.

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