The book begins with a comprehensive developmental and operational history of the Hellcat and follows that with an all-inclusive chapter on the various Hellcat variants. Every variant of the Hellcat is covered, including the XF6F-1/-2/-4/-6 prototypes and the F6F-3/-3E/-3N and F6F-5/-5E/-5N operational variants. These are followed up with sections on the use of the Hellcat as the aircraft of choice used in the very first and early exhibitions put on by what would become the U. S. Navy Blue Angels precision flight demonstration team. The use of the Hellcat in the drone and drone controller roles, both in combat and in peace time is covered next, as is a survey of its use in foreign service by the United Kingdom, France, and Uruguay. Next, is a reprise of a favorite element of the earlier versions of this book, the interview with David McCampbell, the Navy’s all-time leading ace, where he discussed the Hellcat, his own experiences, and the markings of his personal aircraft.
A comprehensive chapter on Hellcat details, long the hallmark of the Detail & Scale brand, follows. This chapter contains eight sections covering the cockpit, windscreen and canopy, fuselage, wing, landing gear, tail, engine, and armament and external stores details. Complete coverage of almost every square inch of the Hellcat is provided through 129 high resolution photographs, 119 of which are in full color.
The comprehensive details chapter is followed by a colorful look at the paint schemes and markings used by the Hellcat during its operation life. The well known wartime paint schemes are all covered, as are the colorful post-war utility schemes seen on Hellcat drones and drone controllers.
As with all Detail & Scale Series books, the final chapter covers the scale modeling history of the Hellcat, from the early kits that are now only collector’s items, to the wide range of kits that have been available for half a century, including the recent Airfix 1/24th kit, which is the most detailed and accurate Hellcat ever released. The most popular scales of 1/144th, 1/ 72nd, 1/48th, 1/32nd, and 1/24th are treated as separate sections, and the available models in each are reviewed.
F6F Hellcat in Detail & Scale is the most comprehensive book on the Grumman Hellcat ever produced.