Chance Vought A-7E Corsair II

Aircraft Background
The A-7E Corsair II located at MAPS Air Museum previously served with VA-105, the Gunslingers. Before coming to MAPS, the airframe was on loan to the Intrepid Sea Air Space Museum, New York City. Officially part of the USN Collection, the A-7E is on indefinite loan from the U.S. Naval Aviation Museum, Pensacola, FL, to MAPS Air Museum for restoration purposes.



Crew Chief: Kim Kovesci

Crew Chief's Update (Restoration Progress):
Port and Starboard lower wheel well doors mounted to airframe. Continued work on wing fold areas, focusing on mechanicals and missing parts. Completed work on speed brake area completed it is now 'closed' and lies flush with the fuselage underside. Continued work on weapons pylon access panels. Completed sanding of tail surface. Work continues on intake warning stripe on port side.

Both port and starboard wing tips mounted on the aircraft. Work continues on wing fold areas, identifying missing parts and looking to acquire them. Fabrication of access panels for the weapons pylons continues. Weapons pylons being prepped for painting. Work on speed brake area began. Sanding of tail section to remove improper unit markings started. Work on canopy area started. Missing canopy attachment part being fabricated. Sanded off improper 401 markings from front fuselage area, will be repositioned correctly after gray paint is applied. Work begins on intake warning stripe on port side.

Underside of both wing tips painted with two coats of gloss white. Tops of both Horizontal stabilizers painted with two coats of gloss white. Outer panels of lower wheel well doors painted with two coats of gloss white. No. 6 (Starboard outer) weapons pylon painted with two coats of gloss white. Misc. access panels for weapon pylons are being fabricated. Gun vent panel being prepped for painting.

Both wing tips primed completed. Work continues on Port wing fold area. Work on Starboard wing fold area completed. Sanding of horizontal stabilizers completed, both parts were primed

Sanding of both wing tips completed. Work continues on Port wing fold area. Sanding of horizontal stabilizers started. Primer and Paint identified and 1 gallon acquired.

Insignias were painted on Port and Starboard forward fuselage. Disassembly of Starboard wing fold area started. Sanding of Starboard wing tip underside continues. Sanding of Port wing tip underside started.

Horizontal stabilizers brought from storage. Work on air intake area completed. Port wing fold area components mounted, and port outer weapons pylon hung (supported by the wing fold mechanism. Sanding of Port wing tip underside completed, sanding of Starboard wing tip underside started.

Refueling probe and housing cleaned. Work continues on port wing fold area. Started work on cleaning / repainting air intake area.

Port middle weapons pylon mounted. Port flap mounted. Damage to nose section repaired. Starboard side cleaned with degreasing agent. Port wing fold area work in progress.

Starboard stainless steel exhaust vent repaired; starboard panel and fastener work started. Port side access panels restoration started. Installed gun barrels and gun access panel. Starboard inner weapons pylons mounting completed. Starboard flap mounted. Port inboard weapons pylon mounted. Tail cap temporarily mounted.

New Crew Chiefs are conducting parts survey and parts inventory in preparation for creating a restoration / work plan. While much of the work is cosmetic, or adding items back to the airframe, some preventative work may need to be done.

Patching and stripping of the wing fold panels is completed. They will be test fit on the aircraft this coming Saturday, then handed off to the Crew Chief for painting.

Work has begun on the A-7 wing fold areas again. Work is focusing on cleanup and paint prep. The patch for the wing fold panel was riveted, and is in the process of being prepped for painting.

Aircraft's History:
Originally Designed as a replacement for the Douglas A-4 Skyhawk, the A-7 Corsair II was roughly based on the Chance Vought F-8 Crusader interceptor aircraft then in squadron use with the Navy. Despite the fact that it was based on a fighter, the A-7 was a pure ground attack / close air support aircraft, with the only air-to-air weapons for self-defense mode. With the airframe's first flight in September 1965, and the initial squadron use in late 1966, the A-7 was had one of the quickest development periods of any post-World War II aircraft. Soon after initial squadron use, the A-7 was flying over the skies of Vietnam. Early version suffered an underpowered engine, so subsequent versions featured up-rated engines. Then Secretary of Defense William McNamara touted combined airframes that could be used by more than one branch of the military, thus cutting operating and maintenance costs. With her stable mate the F-4 Phantom, the A-7 was one of the most successful cross-branch lives, serving with the USAF, USN, and USMC and Air National Guard. Typical of intra-branch needs, many of the later versions of the A-7 came as branches built upon a previous version (e.g., the USAF's A-7D was the Navy's A-7C version, with a more powerful engine, and the following A-7E saw the USN borrowing that more powerful engine of the A-7D and adding some additional USN-specific features. Notable facts on the Corsair II include that it was one of the first aircraft to use a HUD, or Heads Up Display, to display critical information to the pilot without him having to look down into the cockpit, and it was also one of the first to use a projected map display, tracking the aircraft across a map displayed in the cockpit.

Span: 38' 9"
Length: 46' 2"
Height: 16'
Weight: 29,040 lbs loaded
Armament: 1 M61 Vulcan 20mm Gatling gun with 1,300 rounds, 2 AIM-9 Sidewinder missiles, plus up to 15,000 lbs ordnance on wings, including up to 30 500 lb Mk 82 bombs, Paveway laser guided bombs, AGM-65 Maverick or AGM-88 HARM missiles.
Engine: Allison / Rolls Royce TF41-A-400 15,000 lbs (no afterburner

Maximum speed: 698 mph
Cruising speed: 535 mph
Range: 715 miles (strike setup), or 2,861 (ferry setup)
Service Ceiling: 42,000 ft