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Flight Measurements of Lateral and Directional Stability and Control Characteristics of the Grumman F8F-1 Airplane

Description: This paper presents the results of flight tests to determine the lateral and directional stability and control characteristics of the Grumman F8F-1 airplane with three vertical-tail configurations. The data presented herein have no bearing on the performance characteristics of the airplane, which were not measured but which were considered to be exceptionally good. The conclusions reached regarding the lateral and directional stability and control characteristics may be summarized as follows: 1. It was found that the directional stability was poor with the production vertical tail. Addition of a 12-inch extension to the vertical fin and rudder produced a desirable improvement in directional stability and control characteristics. However, further enlargement of the vertical tail would be required to make the directional stability satisfactory in all respects. 2. There was a tendency for the rudder control force to overbalance at large angles of right sideslip with the modified vertical tails. There was no such tendency with the production tail configuration which included a dorsal fin. It was concluded that the dorsal fin should have been retained on the modified vertical tails. 3. The aileron control characteristics were better than those of many comparable airplanes which have been tested. However, the ailerons did not satisfy the Navy requirements for satisfactory flying qualities with regard to either control forces or rolling effectiveness. 4. The power of the rudder trimming tab proved to be inadequate and the tab should be enlarged and/or be provided with an increased deflection range.
Date: January 1945
Creator: Crane, H. L. & Reeder, J. P.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department