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Lake Michigan Wildcat: Manual Landing Gear Demonstration

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The video below shows the operation of a scale mock up of the Wildcat manual landing gear system built by the restoration team at the Kalamazoo Airzoo. The landing gear model show the operation of the gear and chain system used to function the landing gear. Some say it was 28 cranks, some say it was 32 turns. Whatever the number was, if you stopped during the process raising it, you had to lower it back down and start over! You could tell a new Wildcat pilot by the his undulating flight path as he cranked the gear up after takeoff. Pilots learned it was better to trim the plane in a good attitude, then take their left hand off the stick and crank the gear up, so as to not impart motion into the joystick. The infamous crank is shown in the middle of the picture below. The video shows the operation of the gear.


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3 hours ago, Major Lee said:

Some say it was 28 cranks, some say it was 32 turns.

The FM-2 of Kermit Weeks takes 32 turns.


"Grumman" Wildcat FM-2 - Flight w/ Voice-Over & Cockpit Review



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Download Missions, Skins, & Essential files for IL-2 1946 and several other game series from Mission4Today.

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It reminds me when I was flying on glacier with a PA18 Piper SuperCub with a wheeled landing gear equipped with a hydraulic ski system.

To lower and rise the skis we had a lever and you had to pump nearly forty times to fully bring it down, and same back up again.

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