Info & Indexes
 World War I
 World War II
   US Army AF
   US Navy & MC
      A20G Havoc
      AT-6 Texan
      F2A Buffalo
      F4U Corsair
      F4F Wildcat
      F6F Hellcat
      F7F Tigercat
      F8F Bearcat
      O2SU Kingfisher
      PBM Mariner
      PBY Catalina
      PV-1 Ventura
      SB2C Helldiver
      SBD Dauntless
      TBB Devastator
      TBF/TBM Avenger
   Great Britain
 1971 to date


  Prints & Posters
  Aviation Books


Douglas TBD Devastator

     The Douglas TBD-1 was the Navy's first widely-used monoplane shipboard plane. Designed to carry a heavy torpedo below the fuselage, it was necessarily a large aircraft and its 900-horsepower Pratt & Whitney R-1830 "Twin Wasp" radial engine could drive it to a maximum speed of slightly over 200 miles per hour. The XTBD-1 first flew in April 1935 and 129 production TBD-1s were delivered in 1937-39, rapidly replacing biplanes in the Navy's carrier torpedo squadrons. The type gave U.S. Fleet aviators valuable experience with what was, for the time, a rather high-performance aircraft. "Normal" operational attrition whittled away at the TBD inventory, which peaked at about 120 in 1939 and had declined to barely more than a hundred at the start of the Pacific War.
     Though the new Grumman TBF "Avenger" was entering production as its intended replacement, the TBD-1 was the Pacific Fleet's sole torpedo plane for the first part of the war against Japan. It seemingly did well in the raids of February-March 1942 and in the Battle of the Coral Sea in early May, serving in both the torpedo attack and high-level bombing roles. However, in about an hour's time on 4 June 1942, during the Battle of Midway, the TBD entered the annals of Naval history as a synonym for costly futility. Three squadrons of TBD-1s made heroic torpedo attacks on the Japanese carrier force, losing all but four of forty-one aircraft while achieving no hits. Old and slow, with a weak defensive armament and without self-sealing fuel tanks, the TBD had proven horribly vulnerable to enemy fighters, though this vulnerability was to a great extent typical of all torpedo attacks against well-defended ships.  At the end of the Midway battle, the Navy had just thirty-nine TBDs left.

Douglas TBD-1 Devastator
From our Standard Series. 1/32nd scale.  18.75" wingspan by 13.5" long.
  No. AENED-ST.  Only $139.95
aviation td15