Project Description

This photo set contains photographs of the sole surviving F6U-1 Pirate, BuNo. 122479, which is now in the possession of the National Naval Aviation Museum.  The Pirate was initially restored by Vought retirees, but it had a misshaped canopy that was too flat on top, and the fuel tanks on the tips of the wings were also cylindrical in shape rather than having the correct teardrop shape.  Other inaccuracies included the fairing at the base of the trailing edge of the vertical tail which was incorrectly shaped and too large.  The inner doors for each of the main landing gear were not included in the restoration.  Instead, the inboard section of each main gear well was covered over by sheet metal, as was much of the outer sections.  This did not look too bad from a general point of view, since the two inner doors were usually closed when the aircraft was on the ground.  Before placing the aircraft on display, the National Naval Aviation Museum replaced the canopy with one that was more correct in shape, and they simply deleted the tip tanks.  The right side of the cockpit received damage when pressboard used for the right console became wet and expanded.  No other corrections were made to the aircraft.
All but two of the photos in this set were taken while the aircraft was being worked on at the restoration facility at the National Naval Aviation Museum in May 2013.  Before and after general photos of the aircraft are also included at the beginning of the photo set to illustrate the changes made by the museum’s staff.