Curtiss XBTC / XBT2C

1945

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XBTC-2

In late 1943 Curtiss received a US Navy order for two single-seat torpedo-bomber aircraft prototypes under the designation XBTC-1. A clean-looking low-wing monoplane with considerable dihedral on the outer wing panels, retractable tailwheel landing gear and a 2237kW Pratt & Whitney R-4360-14 Wasp Major engine, the Curtiss Model 96 promised performance that should assure a production order. Before the first flew, a slightly different version of the R-4360 engine was installed in each aircraft, bringing the redesignation XBTC-2. However, Curtiss was now in competition with Douglas, Fleetwings and Martin for this requirement, losing out to Douglas and Martin whose contenders were produced as the AD-1 Skyraider and AM Mauler respectively.

In March 1945 Curtiss gained a contract for 10 of the generally similar XBT2C-1. This Model 98 differed by having a lower-powered Wright R-3350-24 engine, reduced armament, accommodation for a crew of two and a search radar pod mounted beneath the starboard wing. Only nine of the 10 were built, and these were the last Curtiss-built aircraft for the US Navy.

Specification 
 MODELCurtiss XBT2C-1
 ENGINE1 x 1864kW Wright R-3350-24 radial piston engine
 WEIGHTS
  Take-off weight8618 kg19000 lb
  Empty weight5565 kg12269 lb
 DIMENSIONS
  Wingspan14.50 m48 ft 7 in
  Length11.94 m39 ft 2 in
  Height3.68 m12 ft 1 in
  Wing area38.65 m2416.02 sq ft
 PERFORMANCE
  Max. speed531 km/h330 mph
  Ceiling8015 m26300 ft
  Range2108 km1310 miles
 ARMAMENT2 x 20mm cannon, 907kg of bombs

Comments
goutou, 21.06.2011 07:23

The photo shows that the landing gear still sports landing gear panels. I think they disappeared on the -5. Getting photos on-line showing any distinction in the variants from -2 to the -5 are difficult.

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Alan G, e-mail, 05.06.2010 20:01

Bill Schultz, if you're still reading this site please drope me a note. Like to talk to you about the SB2C photo you have. Email is ag122651 at hotmail dot com

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Mark Murdock, e-mail, 09.02.2010 14:27

It looks so much like a Grumman Bearcat.

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Bill Schultz, e-mail, 30.10.2007 23:29

Morphing the SB2C into the XBTC-1 seems to have some unknows for me.

It sounds like the inital request for the XBTC-1 called for the P /W 4360 and the use of the contra-rotating props. When that fell short...(probably the same bugaboo that killed the A2D, gearing problems)... the Navy came back and asked for a version with the Wright 3350. Seems reasonable.

I have a photo of an SB2C, possibly a -3 0r -4 variant with a very long engine nacelle from front back to the cowl flaps. I wonder if it was the testbed for the W-3350. It is not swinging a three blade /contra-rotating prop so if it was a testbed then probably not for the P /W 4360 package. Has anyone any ideas or comments about this possibility? If so, where can I find some clarification short of going to the C /W History Center.

The photo shows that the landing gear still sports landing gear panels. I think they disappeared on the -5. Getting photos on-line showing any distinction in the variants from -2 to the -5 are difficult.

Regards...Bill Schultz

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