Corsairs in Lake Washington Forward Back Home
 
The Corsair is one of the worlds most distinctive looking fighters. The inverted gull-wing is it's most identifiable characteristic. The Corsair was developed at the beginning of 1938, at the request of the U.S. Navy, which ordered the construction of the prototype of a new single-seat carrier-based fighter with advanced characteristics.

The Corsair scored a number of Navy firsts. It was the first Navy single engine fighter to fly over 400 miles an hour. The Corsair also set a record for payload, when Charles Lindbergh took off with a 4,000lb payload; the heaviest flown by a single engine aircraft at that point in WWII. The F4U-2 was the Navy's first night fighter and paved the way for other night fighters in WWII and Korea. A Corsair was the only piston-powered Navy aircraft to shoot down a jet in the Korean War. In addition, the Navy's only ace of the Korean war, Lt. Guy P. Bordelon Jr., flew a corsair. The Marines were given numerous copies of this aircraft as well and had a great deal of success.

The F4U was nicknamed, "whistling death" by the Japanese because of the sound the oil cooler vanes made. In later stages of the war, the Corsair was armed with weapons ranging from 500 to 1,000lb bombs, 20mm cannon, and napalm.

There are a number of Corsairs in Lake Washington including one which was recovered, resorted and is now on exhibit at the Seattle Museum of Flight.

Corsairs Image Gallery

 

This Corsair is in rather poor shape at this time but some pieces of the aircraft can still be identified.

 

 

In this image you can see the large radial engine which powered the aircraft. At the top of the image the engine drive shaft can be identified as it disappears into the murky waters.
The fuselage of this aircraft is in very poor shape. Little evidence remains of this once powerful fighting machine.
Fortunately, some wing pieces still remain. In this image you can see one of the hydraulic mechanisms which controlled the wing.
This is the same image as above but from a different angle. Here you can clearly see the wing’s shape and hydraulic mechanism. This was probably part of the assembly that allowed the wing to fold up for storage on aircraft carriers.
Some of the markings still remain. This tailpiece clearly shows some portion of the planes identification.

 

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