Grumman Gulfhawk F3F-2 - RC Groups
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Oct 25, 2013, 07:26 PM
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Grumman Gulfhawk F3F-2

It's long fascinated me that these chubby Grumman bipes were known as light and highly maneuverable fighters. They don't look it, but they were!

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Oct 25, 2013, 08:02 PM
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And another...
Oct 26, 2013, 03:33 PM
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IIRC, the Gulfhawk was actually an F-3-F fuselage and tail fitted with smaller wings from F-2-F.. Engine and cowl may be from that earlier craft as well. One could use Westberg's outstanding scale drawings of both to make an accurate Gulfhawk. Bob Banka used to sell a very good photo packet of the Gulfhawk, as it resides in NASM. Some narratives have the trim colors to the white on orange pattern as "black" while others say DK Blue. Anyone know for sure?? Banka's photos could go either way!
Oct 26, 2013, 08:18 PM
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I live a mile from the NASM Udvar-Hazy center. Attached is a flash photo from a couple of years ago. The colors go with the Gulf Oil logos of my youth.
Last edited by davidterrell80; Oct 26, 2013 at 08:25 PM.
Oct 28, 2013, 11:18 AM
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I live about 3000 miles from the Udvar-Hazy center (LOL )and still don't know if the dark color is blue or black.
Oct 28, 2013, 01:54 PM
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It's Gulf Blue and Orange.
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Nov 04, 2013, 10:27 AM
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see Report #1118 for partial Westberg scale drawing.
Nov 27, 2013, 10:45 PM
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First page of a Gulfhawk article in Flight
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May 12, 2015, 10:36 AM
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Found this, this AM.
It's a model plan, but perhaps oh, so much more... Lot's of detail, which appears to be accurate to full scale prototype.
May 25, 2015, 12:34 PM
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from wikipedia
The Grumman F3F was the last American biplane fighter aircraft delivered to the United States Navy, and served between the wars. Designed as an improvement on the single-seat F2F, it entered service in 1936. It was retired from front line squadrons at the end of 1941 before it could serve in World War II, and was first replaced by the Brewster F2A Buffalo. The F3F which inherited the landing gear configuration first used on the Grumman FF served as the basis for a biplane design ultimately developed into the much more successful F4F Wildcat. When it entered combat, the Wildcat would quickly replace the Buffalo as the primary fighter of the Navy and Marines in the first part of World War II, and continue to be produced throughout the conflict.


A civilian aerobatic two-seat variant, the G-22A "Gulfhawk II," was constructed in 1938 and flown by Major Alfred "Al" Williams (Ret.), head of Gulf Oil's aviation department.

General characteristics

Crew: one pilot
Length: 23 ft 2 in (7.06 m)
Wingspan: 32 ft 0 in (9.75 m)
Height: 9 ft 4 in (2.84 m)
Wing area: 260 ft (24.15 m)
Empty weight: 3,285 lb (1,490 kg)
Max. takeoff weight: 4,795 lb (2,175 kg)
Powerplant: 1 Wright R-1820-22 "Cyclone" 9-cylinder radial engine, 950 hp (710 kW)


Maximum speed: 264 mph (229 kn, 425 km/h) at 15,250 ft (4,658 m)
Cruise speed: 150 mph (130 kn, 240 km/h)
Range: 980 mi (850 nmi, 1,600 km)
Service ceiling: 33,200 ft (10,120 m)
Rate of climb: 2,800 ft/min (14 m/s) at sea level


1 0.30 in (7.62 mm) M1919 machine gun, 500 rounds (left)
1 0.50 in (12.7 mm) M2 machine gun, 200 rounds (right)
Bombs: 2 116 lb (52.6 kg) Mk IV bombs, one under each wing

Last edited by TedD60; May 25, 2015 at 12:44 PM.
Sep 15, 2016, 04:52 PM
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See wings on F2F-1 drawings by Westburg.

F2F wings believed to be proper for William's custom "Gulfhawk" variant, which is F3F fuselage and tail. Cowl appears to be different than either F2F or F3F.
Last edited by packardpursuit; Sep 15, 2016 at 04:59 PM.
Sep 15, 2016, 10:16 PM
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Westburg's article and photos (his drawings appeared in post #10 , above).
Jun 21, 2017, 08:28 PM
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Found these photos, lurking in the stash, taken at NASN. These may be part of a "Scale Model Research" photo pack, but I've lost the small bag and label. These are not best quality shots and probably taken in early 1980's. Sure beat no shots, hands down!!! Bob Banka himself told me that he was re-shooting a number of subjects. Perhaps these or better views are still available?

Note how dark the Blue appears,. Note, too, painted under surface of stabilizer and, oddly, the flying/landing wires seem to be painted the same blue/black. Fairings of cabain strut ends and wire terminals are missing.

There is SOMETHING about this airplane....

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