The Grumman ‘Charlie’s Heavy’ Avenger Was A Great Torpedo Bomber
The Avenger An Effective Torpedo Bomber
The Grumman TBF Avenger proved be such an effective torpedo-bomber that the New York-based Grumman Aircraft soon found themselves unable to meet the U.S. Navy’s demand. As a result, the manufacturing was performed by both Grumman and General Motors, planes built by the latter being named TBM. The Avenger made its debut in The Battle of Midway in 1942 with only one out of six landing back safely.
- With a length of 40 ft, a wingspan of 54 and weighing over 10 thousand pounds, the sturdy and simplistic Avenger could reach 275 mph and climb two thousand feet per minute.
- It was powered by a Wright R-2600 radial engine and had three seats for its crew.
- Two Browning M2 machine guns were mounted on the wings, one on the tail and an M1919 was ventral-fitted.
- It could carry up to eight rockets and one Mark 13 torpedo.
A regular nightmare for Japanese ships and later, an efficient submarine hunter, the Grumman TBF Avenger was also the first plane to use an efficient form of camouflage. Hiding in broad daylight with the use of lights, the Avenger was hard to spot with a clear sky, until it was too late. It’s reliability kept it in use for over 60 years after the events of World War II with many planes still functional today.