Wildcat Speed 400

Plans and construction notes for the F4F Wildcat are available for $15 including shipping, and vacuum-formed canopies are available for $10.  You can order by mail or click here for fast, convenient on-line ordering.  This design appeared in the April 2004 issue of Model Aviation.

CNC-cut foam wing cores are available from FlyingFoam.com.  E-mail them for price and availability.
Add to Cart Scale:  1/14
Span: 30.5"
Length: 23"
Wing Area: 170 SQ IN
Weight RTF: 18 OZ

The prototype shown here was modeled after the aircraft LT "Butch" O'Hare of VF-3 was flying when he earned his Medal of Honor on 20 February, 1942.  O'Hare single-handedly intercepted and attacked a formation of eight G4M "Betty" bombers that was attempting to bomb the Lexington.  In a furious engagement O'Hare destroyed or disabled five of the Japanese bombers, almost certainly saving his carrier from severe damage.

The airframe was covered with .56 ounce glass cloth and finishing epoxy and painted with Testors Model Master paints. All markings were painted with an airbrush using artist's frisket masks.  The powerplant was a stock 6V Speed 400 motor on 8 X NiMH cells. All-up weight was 17.6 ounces. 


My latest Wildcat is an F4F-3 painted in the early 1941 "Neutrality Patrol" colors of VF-41 when the squadron was operating with USS Ranger's air group.  The fuselage and the bottoms of the wings were painted with Krylon "Dull Aluminum" spray paint, then the other markings were applied with an airbrush using Testors Model Master paints.  

While similar in construction to my previous designs, the Wildcat includes some unique features to replicate the mid-wing and high horizontal stab of the original aircraft.  The fuselage is balsa and ply construction and is assembled over an internal disposable crutch.  The wing uses foam cores sheeted with 1/32 balsa sheet.

Recommended flight hardware:

Brushed Power:  6V Speed 400 motor, Graupner #1328 prop adapter, Graupner 6 X 4 prop, 20 amp BEC speed controller, 8-cell NiMH battery or 2200-2S Lipo pack, micro radio gear.

Brushless Power:  2000Kv 100-watt brushless system, APC 7 X 5E prop, 2200-2S Lipo battery, micro radio gear.

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