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Brewster F3A (F4U-1) Corsair

Carrierborne Single-Engine Fighter

United States | 1943

"Brewster contributed to total F4U Corsair fighter production during World War 2 with its F3A copy - it would be its last notable aircraft effort."

Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 06/11/2022 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site; No A.I. was used in the generation of this content.
The Brewster Aeronautical Corporation joined Goodyear in being selected to manufacture the classic F4U "Corsair" carrierborne single-seat, single-engine fighter developed by Chance Vought for the United States Navy (USN) during World War 2 (1939-1945). The company's contribution aircraft were known under the designation of "F3A" while Goodyear models became the "FG". The Brewster Corsair stock was primarily sent to Britain and operated under the name of "Corsair Mk.III" but their quality (deficiencies in the wing members were found, limited their aerobatics) suffered such that none of the mark saw frontline combat.

Because of internal labor issues causing delays for the USN, the Corsair contract was eventually cancelled, leading to the demise of Brewster as an aircraft-producer in America.

Regardless, the Brewster Corsair design was centered around the original F4U-1 production model - the initial production form offered by Chance Vought. These had a heavily-framed "birdcage" style canopy, carried 6 x 0.50 caliber Heavy Machine Guns (HMGs) as standard armament (three guns to a wing member), and were powered by the powerful Pratt & Whitney R-2800-8 "Double Wasp" air-cooled radial piston engine driving a sizeable (13-foot-diameter) three-bladed propeller unit at the nose. The aircraft used a "tail dragger" retractable undercarriage for ground running and the pilot at near midships aft of the long-running nose. The distinct "gull wing" mainplane configuration was a hallmark of the series and included in the Brewster copy of the aircraft.

Some 430 total Brewster Corsairs were completed for Britain's Fleet Air Arm (FAA), these comprising 334 F3A-1 and 96 F3A-1D production models, adding to the impressive Corsair wartime total of 12,571 airframes.

For its part in the war, the Corsair managed an excellent 11:1 kill ratio against the Japanese and was valued enough to see continued combat service in the subsequent Korean War (1950-1953).

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Power & Performance
Those special qualities that separate one aircraft design from another. Performance specifications presented assume optimal operating conditions for the Brewster F3A Corsair Mk.III Carrierborne Single-Engine Fighter.
1 x Pratt & Whitney R-2800-8 air-cooled radial piston engine developing 1,850 horsepower driving three-bladed propeller unit at the nose.
416 mph
670 kph | 362 kts
Max Speed
186 mph
300 kph | 162 kts
Cruise Speed
36,909 ft
11,250 m | 7 miles
Service Ceiling
1,016 miles
1,635 km | 883 nm
Operational Range
2,200 ft/min
671 m/min
City-to-City Ranges
Operational range when compared to distances between major cities (in KM).
The nose-to-tail, wingtip-to-wingtip physical qualities of the Brewster F3A Corsair Mk.III Carrierborne Single-Engine Fighter.
33.4 ft
10.18 m
O/A Length
41.0 ft
(12.50 m)
O/A Width
16.0 ft
(4.88 m)
O/A Height
13,999 lb
(6,350 kg)
Design Balance
The three qualities reflected below are altitude, speed, and range. The more full the box, the more balanced the design.
Available supported armament and special-mission equipment featured in the design of the Brewster F3A (F4U-1) Corsair Carrierborne Single-Engine Fighter .
6 x 0.50 caliber (12.7mm) Browning M2 air-cooled, belt-fed Heavy Machine Guns (HMGs) in wings (three guns to a wing member).
Notable series variants as part of the Brewster F3A (F4U-1) Corsair family line.
F3A - Base Series Designation; based in the Chance Vought F4U-1 production model.
F3A-1 - Initial production model designation; 334 examples completed.
F3A-1D - Variant; 96 examples completed.
Global customers who have evaluated and/or operated the Brewster F3A (F4U-1) Corsair. Nations are displayed by flag, each linked to their respective national aircraft listing.

Total Production: 600 Units

Contractor(s): Brewster Aeronautical Corporation - USA
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[ United Kingdom; United States ]
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Image of the Brewster F3A (F4U-1) Corsair
Image from the Public Domain.

Developments of similar form-and-function, or related, to the Brewster F3A (F4U-1) Corsair Carrierborne Single-Engine Fighter.
Going Further...
The Brewster F3A (F4U-1) Corsair Carrierborne Single-Engine Fighter appears in the following collections:
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