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  • 8/13/2019 General Motors Corporation, TBM-3E


    [1981.050.001] Aircraft - 'TBM-3E Aircraft, Bureau Number 53593'

    TBM-3E Aircraft, Bureau Number 53593

    Accession Number 1981.050.001 Accession Date 15/09/1981 Creator

    Creator Creator Role Manufacturer Date Created 1945 Object Desciption Part of the second batch of TBM Avengers built by the Easter Aircraft Division of General Motors Corporation, TBM-3E (Bureau Number 53593)

    was delivered on 7 June 1945, and delivered to San Diego, where it served briefly with Carrier Aircraft Service Unit (CASU) 12 and TorpedoSquadrons (VT) 19 and 26. In November 1946, the aircraft transferred to Naval Air Station (NAS) Norfolk, Virginia, beginning a period in which italso served at NAS Banana River, Florida, and NAS Atlantic City, New Jersey. The museum's Avenger served as an advanced trainer and with

    Attack Squadron (VA) 1L. During its service with this squadron from October 1947 to August 1948, VA-1L aircraft participated in a fly-over duringin Caracas, Venezuela, for President-elect Romulo Gallegos.

    Notes On one winter Sunday in 1941, the Grumman Aircraft Engineering Company hosted an open house for the families of its employees, and amongthe aircraft they saw was the TBF, the company's new torpedo-bomber. The date was December 7th, and over the course of the next four years

    the airplane would more than live up to its nickname- Avenger. Built in response to a 1939 requirement for a carrier-based torpedo-bomber toreplace the TBD Devastator, the TBF Avenger proved one of the most versatile aircraft of World War II. Equipped with an electrically poweredgun turret and an internal bomb bay, the aircraft carried a crew of three. All told, a total of 9,842 production versions rolled off assembly lines,including 7,546 examples built by the Eastern Aircraft Division of General Motors, which took over production fully in 1943 so that Grummancould concentrate on building the F6F Hellcat fighter.

    The combat debut of the Avenger occurred during the Battle of Midway on 4 June 1942, when six TBF-1s of Torpedo Squadron (VT) 8 launchedfrom Midway Atoll without fighter escort to attack the approaching Japanese fleet. Jumped by Zero fighters during their attac k runs, five wereshot down while the sixth was so badly damaged-one crewman was killed and another crewman and the pilot were wounded- that it wasscrapped after landing at Midway.

    The Avenger survived this inauspicious beginning and became a mainstay on carrier decks throughout the war, helping sink the super battleship Yamato in April 1945, flying the U.S. Navy's first night carrier raid, and scoring naval aviation's first night air-to-air kills. In the Atlantic, it played amajor role in carrier-based antisubmarine warfare, which sent 34 U-boats to the bottom. Perhaps the most famous Avenger pilot during the warwas future President of the United States George H.W. Bush. In September 1944 while flying from the light carrier San Jacinto (CVL 30) on abombing mission against a Japanese radio station on Chichi Jima, Bush's aircraft was severely damaged by antiaircraf t fire. Despite a flamingengine, he continued his dive to score a direct hit before being forced to bail out over water. He was picked up by a submarine and subsequentlyreturned to his squadron to fly additional combat missions. Both of his crewmen failed to survive.

    The Avenger was also at the center of one of the great mysteries surrounding the so -called Bermuda Triangle when five aircraft from Naval AirStation (NAS) Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, disappeared over that area of water while on a training flight in late-1945.
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    The world's first airborne early warning (AEW) airplane, the Avenger soldiered on into the early stages of the Cold War, still appearing in thenaval aircraft inventory as late as 1956.


    Manufacturer: Easter Aircraft Division of General MotorsDimensions: Length: 40 ft., 11 in.; Height: 16 ft., 5 in.; Wingspan: 54 ft., 2 in.Weights: Empty: 10,545 lb.; Gross: 17,895 lb.Power Plant: One 1,900 horsepower Wright R-2600-20 enginePerformance: Maximum Speed: 276 m.p.h. at 16,500 ft.; Service Ceiling: 30,100 ft.; Range: 1,010 miles

    Armament: Two fixed forward-firing .50-in. guns, one flexible-mounted .50-in. gun, one flexible-mounted .30-in. gun, and provisions for up to2,000 lb. of ordnance carried internallyCrew: Pilot, gunner, and radioman

    Aircraft in the Museum Collection

    TBM-3 (BuNo 53593)- On indoor static displayTBF-1 (BuNo 01741)- On loan to NAS Deland Museum, Deland, FloridaTBM-3E (BuNo 91664)- On loan to Naval Air Station (NAS) Jacksonville, FloridaTBM-3E (BuNo 53403)- On loan to National Museum of the Pacific War, Fredericksburg, Texas

    TBM-3E (BuNo 53804)- On loan to USS Lexington Museum on the Bay, Corpus Christi, Texas Multimedia
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    [ Image Only ]

    Title: 1981.050.001
  • 8/13/2019 General Motors Corporation, TBM-3E


    Format: jpeg

    Date: 23/07/2010

    Description: Left Side View

  • 8/13/2019 General Motors Corporation, TBM-3E

  • 8/13/2019 General Motors Corporation, TBM-3E


    [ Image Only ]

    Title: TBM-3E on Display

    Format: jpeg

    Date: 05/03/2007

    Description: TBM-3E on Display