Desperate War of Japan in the Pacific

WASPWoman pilot of F-16
My father had called Guraman all the USN fighters. He told there was a female pilot in the enemy shot down military aircraft. I suppose the rumor wide spread among IJN sailors because of wartime terros, as it were a brave Amazon. I knew WASP did not take part in combat. Grumman had hired 3 woman test pilots. USN did not train women pilots in WWII. The phot shows a WASP clothing, the boots are interesting.

My Amazon was a photo of Gloria Steinem on a bonnet of a car in my memory. The photo may be the cover of Time or Newsweek, I suppose. I do not remember she was wearing what kind of shoes well. Impressive to me that the US car bonnet was tough enough to endure concentrated load under her heels. Otherwise a strange women liberation group appeared in Japan at that time. They wore pink helmets in 1970s. JMSDF has have few women pilots now, I watched one of them flying a P3C on TV. The right photo is a real modern Minerva, appeared from the sky in Japan, riding a F-16. USAF is good at PR.
Gloria Steinem
pink helmets
The WASPs: Women Pilots of WWII

My son told me the dubbed-in voice of Captain Janeway of USS Voyager in Star Trek looked like the voice of Captain Taria Gladys of LHM Minerva in Gundam Seed Destiny.
Gundam SeedDestiny

Wind folded F4F in Hanger of Long Island
I am looking up a folding wing mechanism of F4F. If everyone sees the photo of USS Long Island hanger, the mechanism is very useful, I think. However Japanese maniac argue the effect even now.
Wildcat Wing-folding Mechanism (1941)
Oritatami kiko

19 F4Fs landed on Gudalcanal, which was catapulted from USS Long Island on Aug 1942. Air battle occurred over Guadalcanal at first. IJN lost more than 5,000 air crews in the Solomons.

Production of F4F was 185 till 1941. A F4F variant, FM-2 was equipped with a 1,350hp engine powerful more than improved zeros. USN escort aircraft carriers of TG52 had 266 FM-2 in the battle of Okinawa. 78% of TG52 fighters were FM-2. How USN used the FM-2 in the battle? USN enforced pilots of FM-2 to crank up landing gears by a right arm more than 20 times in the end of the Pacific War.

FM-2 was a varient of F4F made in General Motors. FM-2 had a powerfull engine at low alititude. FM-2 were mailny used in VC(composite quadron) with TBF/M on escort aircraft carriers. VC-3 used FM-2 at first in USN on Kalin Bay(CVE-68) on January 1944. 26 squadrons of USN transferred F4F to FM-2 as shown in the table. It seems that total production of FM-2 was 4,777.

FM-244-8/45-2Marcus Island(CVE-77)
VC-33FM-143-7/12Coral Sea(CVE-57)
FM-244-6/8Coral Sea(CVE-57)
FM-244-9-21/10-16Mission Bay(CVE-59)
VC-55FM-143-7*Natoma Bay(CVE-62)
VC-58FM-143-7*Mission Bay(CVE-59)
FM-144-4-25/5-15Block Island(CVE-21)
FM-244-6-17/8-15Wake Island(CVE-65)
VC-63FM-144-1/3Natoma Bay(CVE-62)
FM-244-4/8Natoma Bay(CVE-62)
VC-68F4F-4/FM-143-7*White Plains(CVE-66)
FM-244-5/8Fanshaw Bay(CVE-70)
VC-81FM-144-3*Shipley Bay(CVE-85)
FM-244-10/45-1Natoma Bay(CVE-62)
VC-82FM-144-3*Sitkoh Bay(CVE-85)
VC-83F4F-4/FM-144-3*Steamer Bay(CVE-87)
VC-84F4F-4/FM-144-3*Cape Esperance(CVE-88)
FM-244-8/45-6Makin Island(CVE-93)
VC-85F4F-4/FM-144-5*Takanis Bay(CVE-89)
FM-244-11/45-6Lunga Point(CVE-94)
VC-88F4F-4/FM-144-3*Windham Bay(CVE-92)
VC-91F4F-4/FM-144-3*Lunga Point(CVE-94)
FM-244-11/45-2Kitkun Bay(CVE-71)
VC-92F4F-4/FM-144-3*Bismark Sea(CVE-95)
FM-245-1/5Shamrock Bay(CVE-84)
VC-97F4F-4/FM-144-3*Admiralty Island(CVE-99)
FM-245-2/5Makassar Island(CVE-91)
FM-245-6/9Lunga Point(CVE-94)
FM-245-4/9Hoggatt Bay(CVE-75)

F4F, p41-42
 Vought F4U
First raid in Kyushu of Japan
F4U-1D by Koike
IJN fought with Vought F4U in Kyushu on Mar 1945. A Betty found enemy kidobutai at night on 17th. A radar in Tanegashima also confirmed the enemy. 203rd and 721st koukutai flew zeros of 292 sorties. On briefing at Kasanohara airfields at 5:40, a 6F6-N was trailing the Betty. The 6F6-N shot down it. A lot of F4U raided over Kyushu for the first time. It was painful combat for IJN. 34 aircraft was lost in the aerial combat. 8 aircarft was destroyed on the ground. Watanabe, p.341-342
Kasanohara airfields

Landed F4U in Okinawa
Landed F4U of Marines bombed on the ground and helped US ground forces, though they also did air combats. They did 10,506 airborne close support sorties. They released more than 5,000 bombs and 1,100 napalm. They shot 37,000 rockets. But 384 F4U were lost because of flak. 305 F4U were lost when they took off and landed down. 74 F4U were lost because of air combats. 22 pilots were killed in action. 39 pilots were unknown.
F4U, p59-60

GroupSquadron(F4U variant)Total flight hour
MAG-31VMF-224(F4U-1A/D), -311(F4U-1A/C), -441(F4U-1A/D/C)38,187
MAG-22VMF-113(F4U-1A/D), -314(F4U-1D), -422(F4U-1A/D)22,912
MAG-14VMF-212(F4U-1A/D/4), -222(F4U-1A/D/4), -223(F4U-1A/D/4)18,551

Ratio of F4U loss by flak was 3.7%. If the each squadron had 24 F4U, the total number of F4U were 216. As the total loss of F4U were 763, MAG replaced 3.5 times in average for 3 months. Price of F4U-1A was $98,386.

Fighting bomber
VMF-222 and VF-17 attached a bomb rack under belly by themselves in Solomons. 8 F4U-1A with a regular Brewster bomb rack of VMF-111 bombed a flak position on Mili on March 8th 1943.

  1. Guam
    USS Santee(CVE-29) ferried F4U on Guam on August 4th 1944. Soon VMF-216, VMF-217 and VMF-225 of MAG-21 arrived as well as VMF(N)-534 equipped with F6F-3N/-5N. MAG-21 had 540 officers, 4,000 soldiers and 200 aircraft of 12 squadrons on Novemver.
    F4U, p56
    USS Santee(CVE-29)

  2. Peleliu
    VMF-114 arrived at Peleliu on September 29th 1944. VMF-121 and VMF-122 took part in a combat. The F4U operated 1,100 times. They released bombs of 165t. They destroyed 2 wireless stations, 58 truks, 122 burges and 35 depos of ammo, fuel. F4U and 16 pilots of them were lost.
    F4U, p56-57

    © 2007-2011 Enoki Sensor All Rights Reserved