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copeab 03-31-2011 10:31 AM

[WWII] Curtiss SOC Seagull recon/observation seaplane (USA)
Curtiss SOC Seagull recon/observation seaplane
Copyright 2011 by Brandon Cope

The Seagull entered production in 1935 and served well into 1944, despite being largely replaced by more modern aircraft. The Seagull was of biplane configuration with one main float and two smaller stabilizing floats. Most could have the floats replaced with wheeled landing gear for use from land bases or aircraft carriers. As late as 1940, the Seagull was the primary (catapult-launched) plane carried on US battleships and cruisers (2-4 were embarked per ship with flagships getting an extra plane). Later in the war those fitted with wheels were sometimes operated from escort carriers as well as land bases.

The SOC-1 had a crew of two: pilot (who fired the nose Browning and dropped any bombs) and observer/gunner (who manned the rear Browning). The SOC-1 uses 20.1 gallons of aviation gas at routine usage.

Subassemblies: Waterproofed Medium Fighter chassis +3, Light Fighter Wings with Biplane and Folding options +2, one sealed Small AFV pontoon +3, two sealed Small Weapon pontoons [Body:U] +0, one fixed skid +0.
P&P: 447-kW HP aerial gasoline engines with 447-kW prop and 170-gallon standard fuel tanks [Body]; 2,000-kW batteries.
Occ: 2 CS Cargo: 5 Body

All: 2/2

Aircraft LMG/Browning [Body:F] (500 rounds)
Aircraft LMG/Browning [Body:B] (1,000 rounds)
2100-lb bombs [Wings:U]

Body: Medium radio receiver and transmitter, navigation instruments, autopilot, bombsight. Wings: One 325-lb hardpoint each.

Size: 32'x38'x14'
Payload: 1.08 tons
Lwt: 2.7 tons
Volume: 200
Maint.: 61 hours
Price: $10,900

HT: 9
HP: 60 Body, 68 each Wing, 75 main Pontoon, 23 each Stabilizing Pontoon, 36 Skid.

aSpeed: 161
aAccel: 5
aDecel: 18
aMR: 4.5
aSR: 2
Stall: 58 mph
-2 mph per loaded hardpoint

wSpeed: 48
wAccel: 5
wDecel: 10
wMR: 0.1
wSR: 3
Draft: 1.1'
Float: 2.7 tons

Design Notes
The historical wing area of 342 sf has been used. Design speed was 162 mph. Design flotation rating was 3.9 tons. The cost, weight and HP of the chassis and each subassembly was divided by two to lower weight, but in the end design weight still had to be reduced 10%.

Performance assumes both hardpoints loaded with 100-lb bombs.

The floats cost about $1,400 and weigh about .5 tons. One source claims the wheeled versions of the OSC could carry a bomb under the fuselage.

To carry it's maximum rated underwing ordnance (two 325-lb depth charges), the fuel tanks could only be filled to 100 gallons.

The 40 SOC-2 only used wheeled landing gear.

The SOC-3 was similar to the SOC-2 but was convertible between land and sea use. Eighty-three were built by Curtiss.

Three SOC-4 were manufactured for the Coast Guard but were impressed into Navy use in 1942.

In 1942, a number of SOC-2 and SOC-3 were fitted with arrestor gear, becoming SOC-2A and SOC-3A.

Forty-four planes were built by the Naval Aircraft Factory to the SOC-3 standard and were known as SON-1, or SON-1A if fitted with arrestor gear.

Phaelen Bleux 03-31-2011 07:53 PM

Re: [WWII] Curtiss SOC Seagull recon/observation seaplane (USA)
Aaaawwww, man, what if this one's in my calendar?! ;)

But in all seriousness, thanks for another great design! :)

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