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XF14C
Role Carrier fighter
Manufacturer Curtiss
First flight July 1944
Status Cancelled
Primary user US Navy
Number built 1

The Curtiss XF14C was a 1940s United States naval fighter aircraft. It was developed by the Curtiss-Wright Corporation in response to a request by the United States Navy in 1941 to produce a new shipboard high-performance fighter aircraft.

Contents

Design and development

In 1941 the US Navy requested a better-performing carrier-based fighter plane, to be powered by the XH-2470 liquid-cooled engine. This was an unusual step for the Navy, which had been adamant to that time that all its aircraft use air-cooled radial engines.

On June 30, 1941 a contract for two prototype aircraft, designated the XF14C-1, was awarded to the Curtiss-Wright company. On the same date prototype development contracts were also awarded to Grumman Aircraft Engineering Corporation for the single-engine XF6F-1 and the twin engine XF7F-1 (which would use air-cooled radial engines).

Early in the development the Navy requested better altitude performance and, in view of unsatisfactory progress in the development of the XH-2470 engine, Curtiss adapted the design of the aircraft around the new turbocharged Wright R-3350 Duplex-Cyclone air-cooled radial engine. The aircraft equipped with this eighteen-cylinder twin-row radial air-cooled engine and three bladed contra-rotating propellers was designated the XF14C-2. The XF14C-1 was canceled. Also, looking at the problems of operation at altitudes of about 40,000 feet (12,000 m), the Navy also initiated work on a third version with a pressurized cockpit designated the XF14C-3.

Ultimately, only the XF14C-2 prototype was completed, flying for the first time in July 1944. Moreover, disappointment with performance estimates and delays with the availability of the XR-3350-16 engine coupled with the evaporating tactical need for an extremely high-altitude fighter led to cancellation of the development.

Specifications (XF14C-2)

General characteristics

  • Crew: one, pilot
  • Length: 37.75 ft (11.5 m)
  • Wingspan: 46.0 ft (14.0 m)
  • Height: 12.33 ft (3.8 m)
  • Wing area: 375 ft² (35 m²)
  • Empty weight: 10,582 lb (4800 kg)
  • Loaded weight: 13,405 lb (6080 kg)
  • Max takeoff weight: 14,582 lb (6614 kg)
  • Powerplant: 1× Wright XR-3350-16 radial eighteen cylinder twin row air-cooled engine, 2,300 hp (1,716 kW)

Performance

  • Maximum speed: 317 mph at sea level, 424 mph at 32,000 ft (510 km/h at sea level, 682 km/h at 9,800 m)
  • Range: 1,355 statute miles at 162 mph (2181 km at 260 km/h)
  • Service ceiling: 39,500 ft (12,000 m)
  • Rate of climb: 2,700 ft/min (13.72 m/s)

Armament

  • 4 × wing mounted 20 mm cannon (planned)

See also

Related lists

References

Notes

Bibliography

  • Bowers, Peter M. Curtiss Aircraft, 1907-1947. London, UK: Putnam & Company Ltd., 1979. ISBN 0-370-10029-8.
  • Green, William. War Planes of the Second World War - Fighters, vol. 4. London, UK: MacDonald, 1961. ISBN 0-356-01448-7.
  • Green, William and Swanborough, Gordon. WW2 Aircraft Fact Files: US Navy and marine Corps Fighters. London, UK: Macdonald and Jane's Publishers Ltd., 1976. ISBN 0-356-08222-9.
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