Monday, December 19, 2011

VP48 and P5M

Here's a nice video showing the launch and take off of a P5M-2 when VP48 had them.


And here's a video showing the last flight. Look close and you can see a P3, the aircraft that replaced the P5M and SP2H's, flying along side. It has its two outboard engines feathered and is still keeping up.


But the old P5M was comfortable. Underpowered and a problem to keep in the air if an engine failed it was slow and could fly low and slow, a real plus for submarine hunting and it could stay on station for a long time. The crew compartment was above the electronic compartment and forward of the wing. The radar operator sat facing forward just behind the cockpit with the CIC/Nav to his right with other positions on down the  starboard side to the radio operator who faced aft so he could watch the electrical panel. All the electronics were vacuum tube based so the power consumpation was huge. In addition to two engine driven 28 VDC generators it had two AC generators and an Auxillary Power Unit.

Just to the right of the radio operator was steps going down to the wheels compartment, or better said where the wheels were attached before the aircraft was pulled out of the water. Forward was the electronics compartment and a small two burner stove where the "cook" could whip up some tasty chow.

In the aft section there were two fold up bunks, sonobouy storage/launcher the APU and someother electronics. In warm weather the hatches were kept open. In cold weather too if observers were needed. Orginally 30 caliber guns were mounted on both sides plus one in the tail pod. Someone finally figured out they were useless as a defensive weapon against fighters and wing mounted 5" rockets and bombs were the thing to use against ships. Depth charges and torpedos were in the bombays located under the engines.

Those days are long gone, probably for the country's best. As for me, this says it all.


"Unlimited tolerance must lead to the disappearance of tolerance. If we extend unlimited tolerance even to those who are intolerant, if we are not prepared to defend a tolerant society against the onslaught of the intolerant, then the tolerant will be destroyed, and tolerance with them." - Karl Popper

“It’s the presumption that Obama knows how all these industries ought to be operating better than people who have spent their lives in those industries, and a general cockiness going back to before he was president, and the fact that he has no experience whatever in managing anything. Only someone who has never had the responsibility for managing anything could believe he could manage just about everything.” - Thomas Sowell in Reason Magazine

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