View Full Version : Flying the Brewster Buffalo... Interview with Capt. Gordon Firebaugh

11-18-2006, 01:58 AM
'The most fabulous thing'
Excerpts from conversation with Gordon Firebaugh, former Naval Aircraft Pilot with VF-2, later Captain USN (date: 1-17-83) -- Jim Maas

Q: What was your perception of the Brewster?
GF: (It was) the most fabulous thing to step into, considering what you had stepped out of...

Q: The F2F?
GF: Right, the Grumman. The F2A was a real dinger.

Q: What was your first experience, your first recollection?
GF: Back in, I think, October '40, we flew the F2F's to Pensacola. We got orders to go in civilian clothes to pick up a 'secret airplane' around 16 October (and were) flown by transport to Anacostia. We were checked out on the F2A-2's, the checkout wasn't as complicated as it is nowadays, and proceeded to San Diego....

Q: In formation?
GF: No, we went singly after check-out - I test flew the ship for two hours, just because I liked it...We got back to San Diego in, still, October. Then they took our F2A's away from us and gave us another squadron's aircraft.

Q: Still Brewsters?
GF: The same thing. Nobody knew why. Now, while I was with the Chiefs (VF-2) I flew simulated dogfights and whipped F4F's, probably the F4F-3 with no folding wing, but I could also outfly the F2A when in an F4F as well - it all depended on who was in the pilot's seat. I flew the F4F after we got switched around [when the VF-2 NAP's were spread around with other squadrons -jm] in early 1942. I got shot down over Santa Isabel [7 August 1942 during the Guadalcanal operation -jm]...and I've often thought that, I wish, I'd been better off in a Brewster. I think it would have matched the [Mitsubishi] Zero - the F4F was heavier and didn't have the turning radius. During that fight, I met up with five Zeros, shot down three before I got shot down. I spent a long time in the water, until I got to land and met one of the [Australian] coas****chers...

Q: You felt the F2A was a better aircraft than the F4F?
GF: Well, remember, I'm thinking of the F2A-2. We had the F2A-3 for a couple of months, that was a different aircraft. It had too much fuel. I remember we could fly five hour patrols....

Q: Did you ever get an explanation for the extra tankage in the F2A-3?
GF: They had put in a wet wing - you were able to purge it with CO2 into the main tank, but it meant extra weight. That was maybe the reason we had strut failures - these wheels, the landing gear, landed pretty hard, negative 3 G's. The struts had a tendency to move forward. When you retracted the gear on the next flight, the box strut scraped on the wheel well. You couldn't have that happen, the gear not retracting, so the mechanics would file some off and get closer to the rivets...

Q: And if you did that enough times...
GF: Exactly, you have a gear failure. I loved the F2A-2, and wasn't as impressed with the -3 and the F4F. Now you know, VF-3 got the first batch and then we got more.

Q: Do you remember any camouflage experiments [the Barclay dazzle paint schemes] by VF-3, actually the Saratoga air group, around September 1940?
GF: Around then, we were being sent to the East Coast to get our F2A-2's. I don't remember (any camouflage trials). Starting in 1941 until November, operating either from Saratoga or Lexington, we operated making quite a number of landings. About February (1942) we took our F2A-3's and gave them to the Marines. Ramsey took most of the squadron on the Lexington to the (Battle of the) Coral Sea. About twelve of us were assigned to the Saratoga after she was hit - we were put on F4F-3A's for CAP (Carrier Air Patrol) between Pearl Harbor and Bremerton Navy Yard in Washington. I spent May of 1942 in San Diego doing ferry detail to New York and Anacostia, then went on the Saratoga with F4F's back to Pearl, but we were too late for the Battle of Midway. Around the first of June I was transferred to VF-6 on the Enterprise....

Q: What was the Brewster like to fly?
GF: We used to dive those things, the Brewster could pick up speed in a hurry. Now when I joined the squadron in 1938, VF-2 was filled with old-time Chiefs (Chief Petty Officers). I was the youngest NAP (Naval Aircraft Pilot, a non-commissioned rank) and one of the old Chiefs grabbed my log books and said "hey fellows, we've got a recruit, he's only got 1600 hours!" Now the squadron was coming up on gunnery practice, the competitions, so they'd keep me up in the air for four or five hours. I was probably 28 at the time...

Q: The Brewster had a reputation for bad landings...
GF: We didn't have too much trouble. For example, I never hear about anyone who could ground-loop a Brewster. We did have one problem, the first couple of months, we had about 8-10 engine failures, due to a faulty main bearing. I remember Bauer had his engine go out north of San Diego - I remember flying his lunch to him while they fixed it. The problem was also in VF-3 but they got all of them down okay. The first engines were 950 hp then 1200 hp on the F2A-3. The other trouble with the F2A-3's landing on the carrier deck, the landing gear struts would twist, move because of the extra gas on board.

Q: Do you remember the early wartime January 1942 operations of VF-2?
GF: They put us on search missions, because the SBD pilots were wearing themselves out. There was one (submarine) sighting, we figured out the course and went out again that afternoon, but the attack was at too low an altitude, so they didn't get a hit on it. We thought the Japanese had radar - they wouldn't let us use electric razors on ship because they thought the Japanese would get a fix on us.

Q: Did you talk to any of the cadets out of Miami?
GF: I talked to some who had trained on F2A's, but the word was that the Brewsters were pretty tired by then. Now another thing about the landing gear, it just occured to me, we were on the Lexington in January '42. There was an F2A parked up in front of the bridge and the gear wasn't locked. All of a sudden the left wing went down, and then the other gear went out and it just sort of settled. I wish I'd had a picture of that, it just kind of sat down!

Q: Going back to the October 1940 pick-up, why did you have to wear civilian clothes?
GF: The Navy was getting concerned about security, so they ordered us to wear civilian clothes. I flew to Chicago and left the plane at Midway (Airport) and, since I had lived nearby, spent the night at home. The next morning, as I taxied out on the runway there were cars along the road with people taking photos. I called the tower and they sent security out to confiscate the film.


Assembly of the second Buffalo (B-396) for the ML-KNIL at Roosevelt Field, Long Island, on 29 January 1941. (Brewster photo 6089, NASM via Casius)

http://www.warbirdforum.com/casius.htm<div class="ev_tpc_signature">


Hunter 82's PC component shop

11-18-2006, 03:49 AM
Commonwealth Buffalo squadrons in Southeast Asia
When the war broke out, the British had four Buffalo squadrons at Singapore and in Northern Malaya. Another was stationed in Burma.
The pilots included only 15 who actually served in the Royal Air Force. The others were officers or (the majority) sergeant-pilots from Australia and New Zealand. Altogether, the Buffalo pilots numbered 118, of whom 28 were killed and another was captured--25 percent lost in less than two months. Several others were badly injured.

U.S. Army equivalent ranks: squadron leader = major, flight lieutenant = captain, flying officer = 1st Lt, pilot officer = 2nd Lt

RAAF 21 ("City of Melbourne") Squadron
The "City of Melbourne" squadron had 12 Buffaloes at Sungei Patani, Northern Malaya, on 8 Dec 1941. 8 destroyed on the ground that day, and the squadron withdrew to Butterworth. 2 more Buffs were shot down on 9 Dec in the first air-to-air combat for RAF fighters in the Pacific. The squadron was then withdrawn to Ipoh and merged with 453 Sq under S/L Harper (see below). Squadron embarked for Australia 27 Jan.
Sqn Ldr W F Allshorn RAAF
Flt Lt F H Williams RAAF
Flt Lt Max White RAAF (shot down 14 Dec; killed)
Flt Lt J R Kinninmont RAAF (crashed 15 Dec; claimed a scout and a Ki-43 19 Jan)
Flg Off G M Sheppard RAAF
Flg Off Bob Kirkman RAAF (claimed a Ki-51 19 Jan)
Flg Off C R McKenny RAAF (shot down 9 Dec; injured)
Flg Off H V Montefiore RAAF (shot down 9 Dec)
Flg Off D M Sproule RAAF
Flg Off J B Hooper RAAF (crashed 15 Dec)
Flg Off B Hood RAAF
Flg Off R H Wallace RAAF (crashed after midair collison 12 Jan; injured)
Sgt Henry Parsons RAAF (shot down 19 Jan; killed)
Sgt Norman Chapman RAAF (shot down 18 Jan; killed)
Sgt G Harrison RAAF (crashed after midair collison 12 Jan)

RAF 453 Squadron
18 Buffaloes and 1 Tiger Moth at Kallang, Singapore. 16 Buffs were sent north to Ipoh on 13 Dec, and the squadron earned the first solid air-to-air claim for a Buffalo that day, though the station commander and another pilot were killed when they crashed out of fuel. The newly appointed station commander, Wing Cdr L J Neale RAF, crashed 13 Dec and was injured. Got new a/c and withdrew to Kuala Lumpur, southern Malay, 19 Dec. First major air-to-air combat with the 64th Sentai on 22 Dec, 12 Buffs vs 18 Nakajima Ki-43 Hayabusas. With 3 a/c remaining, withdrew to Singapore island and got more aircraft, with the merged 21/453 Sq having 16 Buffaloes on 25 Dec. The Japanese by this time were flying from British airfields in Northern Malaya. With 4 Buffs remaining on 24 Jan, this was the only Buffalo squadron still functioning at the end of that month. At least 7 Buffs were flown out to Dutch Indies first week of February, and another (evidently the last) on 11 Feb.
Sqn Ldr Harper W H Harper RAF
Flt Lt Tim Vigors RAF DFC (shot down 13 Dec; injured)
Flg Lt R D Vanderfield RAAF, flight leader (claimed 2 Ki-48s on 13 Dec; claimed a bomber 15 Jan; claimed a Ki-51 19 Jan)
Flt Lt B A Grace, RAAF flight leader
Flg Off F Leigh Bowes RAAF (claimed a bomber 15 Jan)
Plt Off G L Angus RAAF (crashed 13 Dec)
Plt Off D R L Brown RNZAF, on attachment from 243 Sq (crashed 13 Dec; killed)
Plt Off R W Drury RAAF (crashed 22 Dec; killed)
Plt Off T W Livesey RAAF (crashed 13 Dec; injured; crashed 22 Dec)
Sgt J Austrain KC
Sgt Harry Griffiths RAAF (crashed on patrol 3 Jan; injured)
Sgt M N Read RAAF (claimed a Ki-51 on 13 Dec; shot down 22 Dec; killed)
Sgt S G Scrimgeour RAAF (shot down 22 Dec)
Sgt V A Collyer RAAF (claimed a Ki-51 on 13 Dec)
Sgt W R Halliday RAAF
Sgt A W B Clare RAAF (claimed a Ki-43 17 Jan)
Sgt Keith Gorringe RAAF (claimed a Ki-51 19 Jan; crashed 29 Jan)
Sgt R R Oelrich RAAF (shot down 13 Dec; killed)
Sgt E A Peterson RAAF (shot down 22 Dec; killed)
Sgt G R Board RAAF (crashed 18 Dec; shot down 22 Dec)
Sgt J Summerton RAAF
Sgt K R Leys RAAF (shot down 21 Dec)
Sgt M B O'Mara RAAF
Sgt Geoff Seagoe RAAF (shot down 1 Feb)

RAF 243 Squadron
15 Buffaloes at Kallang, Singapore; 2 at Kota Bharu, Northern Malaya. On 12 Dec, 4 Buffs were flown up to Ipoh and attached to 21 Sq. On 25 Dec the squadron had 15 Buffs on strength. After a long convoy escort flight over water on 2 Jan, Sgt Weber wrote in his diary: "My word, when one is so far away from land it is gratifying to recall the reliability record of the Buff's engine." The squadron lost 7 Buffs to accidents in the first week of January. Only 2 Buffs remaining on 23 Jan. Squadron disbanded 27 Jan, with planes and pilots going to 453 Sq.
Sqn Ldr Frank Howell RAF, DFC (claimed a Ki-27 16 Jan)
Flt Lt Mowbray Garden RAF (claimed a Ki-43 13 Jan; shared a Zero 16 Jan)
Flt Lt Ron Bows RAF, flight leader
Flg Off M H Holder RAF
Plt Off E A Pevreal RAAF
Plt Off Gordon Bonham RNZAF (crashed on patrol 2 Jan; wounded 18 Jan)
Plt Off T B Marra RNZAF (claimed a Ki-27 16 Jan)
Plt Off J M Cranstone RNZAF
Plt Off R S Shield RNZAF (killed in takeoff collision 5 Jan)
Sgt Rex Weber RNZAF (shared a Zero 16 Jan; crashed 4 Feb from battle damage)
Sgt Bert Wipiti RNZAF (shared claim on a Ki-46 10 Jan; claimed a Ki-43 21 Jan; claimed a bomber 22 Jan)
Sgt Max Greenslade RNZAF (shot down 23 Jan)
Sgt Charlie Kronk RNZAF (shared claim on a Ki-46 10 Jan; claimed a Ki-48 20 Jan; crashed 1 Feb after damage by a Hurricane)
Sgt Reg Newman RNZAF (shot down 12 Jan; killed)
Sgt Russell Reynolds RNZAF (shot down 13 Jan)
Sgt C F Powell RAAF (crashed on patrol 2 Jan; injured)
Sgt Geoffry Fisken RNZAF (claimed a Ki-27 Nate, two G3M Nells, and three Zeros, Jan-Feb; leading Commonwealth fighter pilot against the Japanese)
Sgt Vic Arthur RNZAF (shot down 22 Jan; killed)
Sgt Noel Rankin RNZAF (shot down 12 Jan; killed)
Sgt P L Elliott RNZAF (killed in landing collision 5 Jan)
Sgt John Oliver RNZAF (missing in action 15 Jan)
Sgt Ginger Baldwin RAF (shot down 22 Jan; killed)

RAF 488 Squadron
17 Buffaloes at Kallang, Singapore; 16 remaining on 25 Dec. This was the least-trained Buffalo squadron. The diarist wrote on 4 Jan: "The Squadron, thought not fully operational, has reached a high standard.... 90% of the pilots are quite at home in Buffaloes as far as throwing the machines around is concerned, but have had very little altitude flying [because] the Buffalo engine will not stand up to full-throttle climbs. We have had cases of engine loss of power through drop of oil pressure and excess oil temperature. The maximum height that can be reached is 25,000 feet." The squadron's first combat was on 12 Jan, with two Buffs lost and five damaged with no claims by the Kiwis. With only 2 Buffs remaining on 23 Jan, it handed them over to 243 Sq and was requipped with Hurricanes, and MacKenzie replaced Clouston as sqn ldr.
Sqn Ldr Wilf Clouston RAF, DFC
Flt Lt (later sqn ldr) J N MacKenzie RAF, DFC
Flt Lt J R Hutcheson RNZAF (shot down 13 Jan; shot down 17 Jan)
Plt Off Frank Oakden RNZAF (shot down 13 Jan)
Plt Off P D Gifford RNZAF
Plt Off J C Godstiff RNZAF (crashed 4 Jan; injured)
Plt Off Keith McAneny RNZAF (crashed 12 Jan; shot down 19 Jan; killed)
Plt Off H S Petit RNZAF
Plt Off G P White RNZAF
Plt Off Greville Hesketh RNZAF (shot down 15 Jan; killed)
Plt Off Bill Greenhalgh RNZAF
Plt Off Noel Sharp RNZAF (claimed a Ki-43 13 Jan; claimed a Zero 17 Jan; crashed 17 Jan)
Plt Off Frank Johnstone RNZAF (crashed 17 Jan)
Plt Off Ernie Cox RNZAF (shot down 17 Jan; killed)
Plt Off L R Farr RNZAF
Sgt W J N MacIntosh RNZAF
Sgt Ed Kuhn RNZAF (crashed 13 Jan; claimed a Ki-27 15 Jan)
Sgt Terry Honan RNZAF (shot down 12 Jan; injured)
Sgt Bob MacMillan RNZAF (shot down 12 Jan)
Sgt W R De Maus RNZAF
Sgt H J Meharry RNZAF
Sgt Don Clow RNZAF (crashed out of fuel 13 Jan)
Sgt Vic Meaclem RNZAF (crashed 12 Jan)
Sgt P E E Killick RNZAF (claimed a Zero 17 Jan)
Sgt J Burton RNZAF
Sgt C D Charters RNZAF (shot down 19 Jan; captured)
Sgt Alex Craig RNZAF (crashed 18 Dec; killed)

RAF 67 Squadron
16 Buffaloes at Mingaladon, Burma, with occasional dispersals to advanced fields at Moulmein and along the Tenasserim peninsula. First actions were strafing across the border in Malaya; heavily engaged defending Rangoon from Japanese bombers on 23 and 25 Dec, and again on 24 Jan. Withdrawn to Magwe on xx Feb and with 4 remaining aircraft to India on 10 Mar.
Sqn Ldr R A Milward RAF, DFC (wounded by shrapnel 23 Dec)
Flt Lt Jack Brandt RAF (took command 15 Jan)
Flt Lt Colin Pinckney RAF (claimed a bomber on the ground 13 Jan; shot down 23 Jan; killed)
Flg Off P M Bingham-Wallis RAF
Flg Off J S Wigglesworth RAF (crashed 29 Jan; killed)
Flg Off John Lambert RAF (claimed a Ki-21 23 Dec; shot down 25 Dec; killed)
Plt Off G S Sharp RNZAF
Plt Off H Christensen RNZAF
Plt Off C McG Simpson RNZAF
Plt Off Paul Brewer RNZAF (shot down 20 Jan; killed)
Plt Off A A Cooper RNZAF
Plt Off P Parsonson RNZAF
Sgt Vic Bargh RNZAF (claimed a Ki-21 23 Dec)
Sgt John Macpherson RNZAF (shot down 25 Dec; killed)
Sgt E E Pedersen RNZAF
Sgt Ken Rutherford RNZAF
Sgt E L Sadler RNZAF
Sgt Gordon Williams RNZAF
Sgt G Norton RAAF
Sgt E H Beable RNZAF
Sgt W J Christiansen RNZAF
Sgt P T Cutfield RNZAF
Sgt John Finn RNZAF (shot down 20 Jan; killed)
Sgt Ted Hewitt RNZAF (shot down 25 Dec; killed)
Sgt Ron McNabb RNZAF (shot down 25 Dec; killed)<div class="ev_tpc_signature">


Hunter 82's PC component shop

11-18-2006, 04:41 AM
Thanks for posting. In game, the F2A is a fun aircraft. In all respects.

11-18-2006, 04:46 AM

Flight testing the Brewster Buffalo
As test pilot for the Royal Navy, Eric Brown flew scores of aircraft from many nations. He wrote short essays on 36 of them for Wings of the Weird and Wonderful, published by Airlife in Britain and Tab Books in the U.S. Thanks to Birgir Thorisson for bringing this delightful book to my attention.
Capt. Brown flew a Belgian-order Brewster 339 at Royal Naval Air Station, Yeovilton, early in 1941, along with a Grumman Martlet, as the British called the F4F Wildcat. "They were both tubby little single-seat fighters with a very purposeful air about them," he wrote. Brown noted that there were 40 of these planes, acquired when Belgium fell to the Germans, and shipped to Britain aboard HMS Furious. They were assembled at Burtonwood, later a huge American base--near Manchester, I think. He obviously had his notes in front of him as he wrote the Buffalo chapter:

"Once in the cockpit I found the view ahead rather poor because of the aft position of the pilot and the high position of the nose. In spite of this, the aircraft was very easy to taxi, as the brakes were smooth and very efficient.

"On take-off the throttle had to be opened carefully as there was no automatic boost control, and the stick [had to be] moved forward to get the tail up and improve acceleration. The rudder control was very good in keeping the aircraft straight on its short run.

"The climb was steep and initially at a rate of 2,000 ft./min. but soon began to fall off noticeably as altitude increased. The longitudinal stability was decidedly shaky and would make instrument flying very difficult. [Commenting on another a/c, Brown noted that longitudinal instability was a good feature in a fighter.] It was also apparent that there were [exhaust] fumes coming into the cockpit....

"In normal cruise at 160 mph the aircraft was longitudinally unstable, laterally neutral stable, and directionally positively stable. Maximum speed was 290 mph at 16,500 ft. and the service ceiling was only 25,000 ft. Not very impressive performance. However, it was a different story when it came to handling, for the ailerons were highly effective throughout the speed range, the elevators almost equally so, and the rudder very good too.

"The all-up stall occurred at 76 mph with a sudden but mild wing drop followed by the nose. The all-down stall was at 67 mph with similar but slightly more pronounced characteristics.

"For landing the undercarriage was lowered at 95 mph followed by the slow moving flaps at 90 mph. An approach speed of 80 mph gave a reasonable view, but needed almost full backward elevator trim. Touch down occurred at 75 mph with a good pull back on the stick to achieve a three-pointer as the power was cut. Once on the ground the aircraft could be kept nicely straight on rudder with a discreet touch of brake.

"My feeling after flying the Buffalo was one of elation tinged with disappointment. It was a true anomaly of an aeroplane with delightful manoeuvrability but poor fighter performance. Indeed above 10,000 ft. it was labouring badly."

Brown acknowledge the Brewster 239's success in Finland, and suggested that "the climate and the opposition" must have favored the plane in Finnish service.

`Could almost match the Zeke'
On 13 June 1996 Birgir Thorisson wrote as follows:
The description of the Buffalo that I sent you by Eric Brown comes from a highly condensed book [Duels in the Sky]. Although it is undoubtedly based on his original notes, the descriptions in the book are not always accurate.... This may be considered lapses by an old man, but still you may be interested in some of his speculation about the relative possibilities of certain aircraft.

On the Finnish Brewsters he comments: "This aircraft had a gross weight of only 5,820 lbs, which gave it a reasonably lively performance below 10,000 ft." p.44. On p.99, he gives his assessment of the Buffalo versus "Zeke 22" [Mitsubishi Zero A6M model 22]. "The little Buffalo could almost match the Zeke for maneauverability, but was badly outclassed in performance and inferior in firepower. Thus it had little hope of besting the Japanes fighter. In a dogfight, the initiative would rest entirely with the Zeke, which could mix it or break off at will."

I have seen detailed descriptions by Eric Brown of individual types in articles in the AIR INTERNATIONAL magazine. I do not know if he wrote such an article about the Buffalo, but if he did, and it were of the same quality as his articles about e.g. Swordfish or Dauntless, it would be most useful.

(Also see the British flight tests done for Eagle squadron and other RAF and Fleet Air Arm purposes.)<div class="ev_tpc_signature">


Hunter 82's PC component shop

11-18-2006, 05:14 AM
Good finds there, woofiedog. I enjoyed reading them. Keep up the good work with your research.<div class="ev_tpc_signature">

I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

11-18-2006, 06:38 AM
http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-happy.gif Thank's<div class="ev_tpc_signature">


Hunter 82's PC component shop

11-18-2006, 06:50 AM
Excellent stuff as always, WD. I think one of the most interesting tidbits was "I flew simulated dogfights and whipped F4F's...but I could also outfly the F2A when in an F4F as well---it all depended on who was in the pilot's seat."

11-18-2006, 06:58 AM
In the NEI, the ML-KNIL pilots flying the Brewster found that with 50% fuel or less, their plane could turn with the Ki.43 (the CW-21B could also match the Ki). The KNIL Brewsters were some 250 kg lighter than the RAF Buffalo Mk.I, and the B-339D version also had a 1200 hp engine like the F2A-2 and F2A-3, rather than the 1100 hp Cyclone fitted to the C and the RAF's Buff. The only area where the Ki. was superior to the C and D was climb, but otherwise the Brewster was superior: better gunpower, armour protection for the pilot plus self-sealing fuel tanks, more rugged construction, higher level and maximum dive speeds.
The RAF, similarly, cut fuel load (to 60% standard) after the initial disastrous encounters over Malaya, plus took a lot of other weight-saving measures which improved the performance of the Buff no end. Small wonder that 67 Sqn pilots in Burma preferred the Buffalo to the Hurricane IIB once the bugs were sorted out. In the sim, too, the Buff is superior to the Hurri- once you're on a Hurri's tail, the Hurri is dead: the Buff will easily outturn it. And even with reduced 50 or 60% fuel load, the Brewster still can fly further than the Hurri on full fuel load.
Pity we don't have the field-mod Buff in the sim- but slashing the fuel load is easily done.<div class="ev_tpc_signature">

The KNIL is dead. Long live the KNIL!

11-18-2006, 07:43 AM
Thanks for the effort Woofie.
U always find interesting materials. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/agreepost.gif<div class="ev_tpc_signature">


11-18-2006, 08:12 AM
Vey interesting! Thanks Woofie!<div class="ev_tpc_signature">

Fly friendly!


Visit No 79 Squadron vRAF (http://www.gazzamataz.com/79vRAF/)

Petter B°ckman

11-18-2006, 08:16 AM
Nice to read that some American had something positive to say about F2A - Only the title is a bit misleading because F2A isn't automatically Buffalo...

BTW boyington said the same thing about F2A-2 first snarling about F2A-3 but afterwards admitting as much that the earlier models were delightful to fly - "you could turn it inside a phonebooth" (his words). A-3 has done quite a damage to a good aircraft...<div class="ev_tpc_signature">


11-18-2006, 11:17 AM
Nice read Woofiedog! thanks

Here is some info regarding Dutch Buffaloes from a Dutch book.

Losses of Dutch Brewster Buffaloes
(VL.G = Airplane Group)

December 4 1-VL.G.IV
Sgt. A.C. van Bers
Missing on flight Kendari ? Ambon
due to bad weather

December 19 1- VL.G.V
Sgt. W.E. Wessels
Accident during emergency landing
near Samarinda, whilst flying back from Miri to Samarinda II

December 28 1- VL.G.V
Tlt J.N. Droog
Shot down by Zero?s over Tarakan island

December 28 1- VL.G.V
Vdg G. Olsen Shot down by Zero?s over Tarakan island

December 28 1- VL.G.V
Vdg C.A. Vonck Shot down by Zero?s over Tarakan island

December 28 1- VL.G.V
destroyed during strafing on Tarakan airfield (was already damaged in an landing accident)

Dec. 30 (ca.) 1-VL.G.IV
Vdg J. Brouwer
Written-off after tangling up with blockade during landing on Ambon II

January ? 3-VL.G.IV
Sgt. H. Huys
During formation flying collided with wingman. Successful landing in rice paddy.

Jan. 6 (ca.) 2-VL.G.V
Vdg. J.H.A. Ellecom
Crashed during take-off fromPalembang. Pilot heavily wounded.
(frame B3108)

January 10 1-VL.G.V
Frame fell in enemy hands whilst aboard
cargoship Baynan at Tarakan island

January 12 2-VL.G.V
Tlt. A.G. Deibel
Shot down by Zero?s over Singapore

January 13 1-VL.G.IV
Elt. F.E. Broers
Shot down by Zero?s over Ambon

January 13 1-VL.G.IV
Sgt. W.J. Blans
Shot down by Zero?s over Ambon

January 15 2-VL.G.V
Sgt. A. Voorbij
Landed at sea near Biliton after
engine failure

January 15 2-VL.G.V
Vdg. F. Swarts
Shot down over Singapore by Zero?s

January 17 3-VL.G.V
Vdg. W. v. Buuren
In bad weather collided with
mountain in Tjikalong Wetan pass.

January 17 3-VL.G.V
In bad weather collided with
mountain in Tjikalong Wetan pass.

January 22 3-VL.G.IV
Sgt. H.C. Voorn Crashed during take off.
Plane burned.

January 22 3-VL.G.IV
Elt. R.A. Sleeuw
Over turned during landing.

January 23 2-VL.G.V
Vdg. R.A. Rothcrans
Didn?t return after attack on Jap fleet
near Balikpapan

January 24 1-VL.G.V
Vdg. Th.W. Kurz
Shot down by Zero?s at Samarinda II

January 24 1-VL.G.V
Sgt. Th.J. de Waardt
Shot down by Zero?s at Samarinda II

January 25 1-VL.G.V
Frame damaged beyond repair during
attack at Samarinda II (Zero?s)

January 28 1-VL.G.V
Damaged beyond repair during
attack at Samarinda II by Zero?s (frame B3159)

January 28 1-VL.G.
Damaged beyond repair during
attack at Samarinda II by Zero?s(frame B3126)

January 29 1-VL.G.V
Sgt. A. Berk
Crashed in bad weather at Kendal on
route Perak-Semplak

February 5 1-VL.G.V
Used for spare parts after being
damaged by Jap attack at
Samarinda II

February 9 3-VL.G.IV
Sgt. H. Huys
Moments before take off at Tjililitan
shot at by Zero?s and burnt out.

February 9 3-VL.G.IV
Vdg. C. Weynschenk
Shot down during take off at

February 9 3-VL.G.IV Sgt. J. Berk Shot down near Tjililitan by Zero?s

February 9 3-VL.G.IV - 4 planes on ground wrecked by
attack on airfield Tjililitan<div class="ev_tpc_signature">

"Once (I think it was 31st aug. 1940), I was in a fight with four Hurricanes over Dover.
I was back over the channel when I saw another Hurricane coming from Calais, trailing white smoke, obviously in a bad way.
I flew up alongside him and escorted him all the way to England and waved goodbye.
A few weeks later the same thing happened to me.
That would never have happened in Russia - never". (Erich Rudorffer - 109 pilot)

11-18-2006, 02:22 PM
fantastic research woofie http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif<div class="ev_tpc_signature">

Originally posted by marc_hawkins:
Don't be too proud of this technological terror you've constructed. A 108:0 kill ratio is insignificant next to the power of the Force


11-18-2006, 05:53 PM
I sent a link to this thread to my grandfather and he replied with this:


Let me clear up what may be a misunderstanding about the ownership of the Brewsters I flew and in fact the ownership of all planes the Marine Corps flys now and back then. I flew the Brewster while in Miami in what was called a Naval Pre-operational Trainig Command. Strictly speaking all aircraft flown by both Navy and Marine squadrons are procured by the Naval Air Systems Command and in that sense are all Naval aircraft. Some procured specifically for the Marine Corps are, nevertheless, Naval aircraft.

I really didn't get to fly the Brewster enough to form any lasting impression about its air-to-air capabilities and whatever I may have thought at the time once I soon started flying Corsairs I expect the Corsair's superiority simply magnified my negative views of the Buffalo. I do clearly remember that I and my contemporaries felt that design-wise it was too short-coupled. That is to say the ratio of its weight and width to its length made it a lot less maneuverable in the air and dicier to handle in landing and taxiing. The Navy Captain whose memories are mentioned probably flew most of his flights from carriers and the latter problems I allude to would not have been such a problem there.



11-18-2006, 06:06 PM
flakwagen... I can not say enough for your Reply on this Thread.

I want to to say "Thank You" to your Grandfather and to You for the Posting.

Thank's<div class="ev_tpc_signature">


Hunter 82's PC component shop

11-18-2006, 07:14 PM
Hey Flak- thanks for you and Woofie posting. I have had fun doing rolls and such avoiding the enemy: even did a machinima movie while quite tipsy, but it turned out for the most part fun.

See it at http://video.yahoo.com/video/play?vid=6648218ec180cc99b...Fstudio%3Fei%3DUTF-8 (http://video.yahoo.com/video/play?vid=6648218ec180cc99b064fcd8f471b950.656774&vback=Studio&vdone=http%3A%2F%2Fvideo.yahoo.com%2Fvideo%2Fstudi o%3Fei%3DUTF-8)

It's not the best but it was fun and promotes the best of the barrel chested fighter IMHO.


Triad<div class="ev_tpc_signature">

Online on HL as {BR}Triad

11-18-2006, 11:55 PM
You are both welcome. I never thought I'd see a fighter as unaggressive in looks and obscure as the Buffalo in such a successful WW2 simulation. Nor did I know grandfather flew them, until a year ago. Go figure!


11-19-2006, 12:25 AM
Great interview woofie.

http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/11.gif F2A is my fave PF Ussian carrier fighter. Being able to fly an F2A as the frontline NAVY fighter in a dynamic campaign requires a "fantasy" scenario, say Japanese attack on 7 December 1940 or so...This is one value of non-historical type of campaigns. The neat thing is A5Ms, I believe, may have still been used on Japanese carriers also then -- and they would be alot of fun too. For this, however, the upcoming Ki-27 would have to be used as "flyable" A5M, much like Yak-1 was used as Spit-1 before the releace of AEP with it's Spit-5.<div class="ev_tpc_signature">

http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/10.gif Flyable Swedish "Gladiator" listed as J8A...in FB Gold...and...Aces Expansion Pack

"You will still have FB, you will lose nothing" ~WUAF_Badsight
"I had actually pre ordered CFS3 and I couldnt wait..." ~Bearcat99
"At the altitudes this community flies at, diving is not an option." ~Stiglr
"Gladiator and Falco, elegant weapons of a more civilized age" ~ElAurens
"109Z flew briefly, after being hit by a bomb. Go-229 also saw combat, when the factory was overrun." ~pingu666
"Where you did read about Spitfire made from a wood?
Close this book forever and don't open anymore!" ~Oleg_Maddox http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-surprised.gif

11-19-2006, 02:26 AM
Heliopause... Thank's for the information.

triad773... Not a Bad Video... Better than the movie Pearl Harbor. Thank's for posting.

Again Thank's for all of the reply's.<div class="ev_tpc_signature">


Hunter 82's PC component shop

11-19-2006, 04:36 AM
Wow, your Grandfather few Buffalos!

Flakwagens Grandfather:

I do clearly remember that I and my contemporaries felt that design-wise it was too short-coupled. That is to say the ratio of its weight and width to its length made it a lot less maneuverable in the air and dicier to handle in landing and taxiing.

The landing-part seems very well modelled in this game. It's a bit like driving a train on one rail.<div class="ev_tpc_signature">

Fly friendly!


Visit No 79 Squadron vRAF (http://www.gazzamataz.com/79vRAF/)

Petter B°ckman

10-21-2017, 10:05 AM
The book on the recovery of BW-372 is out on Amazon, B&N and others . "The Last Great Buffalo Hunt" Page Publishing 800 pages