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[1976.035.001] Aircraft - 'TF-1/C-1A Trader Enters Service'
C-1A Trader on Display
TF-1/C-1A Trader Enters Service
Accession Number 1976.035.001
Accession Date 06/06/1976
Creator Creator Role
Date Created 1955
Object Desciption First flown in January 1955, Grumman's TF-1/C-1A Trader entered COD service; VR-24 Det. Naples was probably the first line unit to operate it in the Fleet.
Object Notes The museum's C-1A Trader (redesignated from TF-1 in 1962) was accepted by the Navy on 30 June 1955, and four years later it was assigned to the aircraft carrier Lexington (CVS 16) when that carrier returned from a Far East cruise. The airplane deployed in the ship when she embarked on what would turn out to be her final cruise in the Pacific, and remained with Lexington when she was reassigned to the Naval Air Station (NAS) Pensacola, Florida, as the Navy's designated training aircraft carrier in 1963. For the next thirteen years she logged hundreds of flights between Forrest Sherman Field on board NAS Pensacola to the deck of "Lady Lex," in the final years of her service averaging double the monthly flight hours as C-1As assigned to the fleet. After the airplane passed the 15,000 hour mark, the decision was made to retire it from service and it was donated to the then-Naval Aviation Museum. It is painted in a bicenntenial paint scheme of the type popular in naval aviation during 1976, the last year of its active service.
Notes An aircraft carrier is often called a "city at sea," and keeping a floating city that is in constant motion supplied with everything from food to ordnance is a logistical challenge. As part of this effort, during the Korean War the Navy developed the Carrier On-board Delivery (COD) concept, modifying World War II-era TBM Avenger torpedo-bombers to carry mail, passengers, and other cargo between ship and shore. The successful introduction of the S2F Tracker antisubmarine warfare aircraft triggered the idea to convert the airframe for additional use as a COD aircraft. The subsequent TF (later redesignated C-1) Trader, capable of transporting nine passengers and even a small nuclear weapon, entered service in 1955 and operated from the Navy's flattops for the ensuing thirty-three years, the last one retiring from its duties on board the training carrier Lexington (AVT 16) on 27 September 1988. Some Traders were also modified for evaluation of the aircraft for the electronic reconnaissance. They were the last piston engine aircraft operated on board U.S. Navy aircraft carriers.

The Museum's C-1A arrived from the aircraft carrier Lexington (AVT 16) in 1976.


Manufacturer: Grumman Aircraft Engineering Corporation
Dimensions: Length: 42 ft.; Height: 16 ft., 3 in.; Wingspan: 69 ft., 8 in.
Weights: Empty: 16,631 lb.; Gross: 24,600 lb.
Power Plant: Two 1,525 horsepower Wright R-1820-82WA engines
Performance: Maximum Speed: 280 M.P.H. at 4,000 ft.; Service ceiling: 24,800 ft.; Range: 1,110 miles
Armament: None
Crew: Two pilots

Aircraft in the Museum Collection

C-1A (BuNo 136754)- On outdoor static display
C-1A (BuNo 146038)- On loan to USS Lexington Museum on the Bay, Corpus Christi, Texas
C-1A (BuNo 146036)- On loan to San Diego Aircraft Carrier Museum, San Diego, California
C-1A (BuNo 146034)- On loan to Delaware Valley Historical Aircraft Association, Willow Grove, Pennsylvania
C-1A (BuNo 136792)- On loan to Quonset Point Air Museum, Rhode Island
Museum's C-1A Trader in Active Service
 Aircraft on Display

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