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United States' Vought OS2U Kingfisher land and floatplane

Photos

OS2U-1 Kingfisher:
United States' OS2U-1 Kingfisher land and floatplane
Aeronautics Aircraft Spotters' Handbook
OS2U-1 Kingfisher:
United States' OS2U-1 Kingfisher land and floatplane
Aeronautics Aircraft Spotters' Handbook
OS2U Kingfisher land and floatplane:
United States' OS2U Kingfisher land and floatplane

Design

Development of the Kingfisher started in 1937. It was Vought's first monoplane to be introduced.

It was constructed with the use of spot welding which was revolutionary for the time.

Land and Sea

The floats could be removed a wheeled undercarriage could be installed.

Prototype

The XOS2U-1 prototype first flew on July 20, 1938.

Production

  • Vought XOS2U-1: 1
  • Vought OS2U-1: 54
    • Manufacturer: Vought at Stratford, Connecticut, United Aircraft Company
  • Vought OS2U-2: 158
    • Manufacturer: Vought at Stratford, Connecticut
  • Vought OS2U-3: >1,000, 1,006
    • Manufacturer: Vought at Stratford, Connecticut
  • Vought OS2N-1: 300
    • Manufacturer: Naval Aircraft Factory at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • Total: 1,519
    • Production: 1940 - 1942

Variants

  • Vought XOS2U-1: Prototype.
  • Vought XOS2N-4: Experimental prototype with narrow chord wings and revised aerofoil.
  • Vought OS2U-1: Entered service in August 1940.
  • Vought OS2U-2: Entered service in late 1940. Had some equipment changes.
  • Vought OS2U-3: Added fuel capacity. More armor protection for the pilot and observer/gunner. Entered service in 1941.
  • Vought OS2N-1: Similar to the OS2U-3.
  • Vought Kingfisher Mk I: Made for Britain. Used for reconnaissance and training.

Usage

The OS2U Kingfishers were used by Argentina (9), Australia (24), Britain (100), Chile (15), Dominican Republic (3), Mexico (6), Uruguay (6), and the United States.

United States Navy's Standard

The Kingfisher was the standard floatplane deployed by the United States Navy either by inshore bases or launched by catapult from ships at sea. It participated in all theaters of operation.

Multi-Role

The OS2U Kingfisher was also used for artillery spotting, dive bombing, air sea rescue, anti submarine, and liaison roles.

Specifications

  Vought OS2U Kingfisher
Type Reconnaissance floatplane, Reconnaissance land plane
Crew 2
Engine (Type) Pratt & Whitney R-985-48 Wasp Junior
OR Pratt & Whitney R-985-50 Wasp Junior
OR Pratt & Whitney R-985-AN-2 Wasp Junior
OR Pratt & Whitney R-985-AN-8 Wasp Junior
Cylinders Radial 9
Cooling  
HP 450
Propeller blades 2
Dimensions  
Span  
Length  
Height  
Wing area  
Weight  
Empty  
Loaded  
Performance  
Speed  
Cruising speed  
Climb  
Service ceiling  
Range  
Armament  
Nose 1: 0.3" MG
Rear cockpit 1: 0.3" MG
Bombs 650 lb
295 kg
  Vought OS2U-1 Kingfisher
Type Reconnaissance
Crew 2
Engine (Type) 1: Pratt & Whitney R-985-48 Wasp Jr.
1: Pratt & Whitney Wasp Junior
Cylinders Radial, Radial 9
Cooling Air
HP 400, 450
Propeller blades  
Dimensions  
Span 35' 11", 36'
Length 33' 10"
Height 15' 1"
Wing area  
Weight  
Empty  
Loaded 4,725 lb, 6,000 lb
Performance  
Speed 175 mph
Speed @ 5,500' /
1,676 m
164 mph
Cruising speed  
Climb  
Service ceiling 19,500'
Range 805 miles, 1,000 miles
Armament 2: MG
  Vought OS2U-3 Kingfisher
Type Reconnaissance floatplane
Crew 2
Engine (Type)  
Cylinders  
Cooling  
HP  
Propeller blades  
Dimensions  
Span 35' 11"
10.95 m
Length 33' 10"
10.31 m
Height 15' 1.5"
4.61 m
Wing area  
Weight  
Empty 4,123 lb
1,870 kg
Loaded 6,000 lb
2,722 kg
Performance  
Speed  
Speed @ 5,500' /
1,676 m
164 mph
264 kph
Cruising speed 119 mph
192 kph
Climb to 5,000' /
1,524 m
12.1 minutes
Climb to 10,000' /
3,048 m
29.1 minutes
Service ceiling 13,000'
3,962 m
Range 805 miles
1,295 km
Armament  

Sources:

  1. Aircraft of WWII, Stewart Wilson, 1998
  2. World War II Airplanes Volume 2, Enzo Angelucci, Paolo Matricardi, 1976
  3. Aeronautics Aircraft Spotters' Handbook, Ensign L. C. Guthman, 1943
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