Grumman F6F-5 Hellcat – Minsi III, David McCampbell, US Navy 1944


1 in stock


1 in stock

Corgi Predators 1/72 scale PR99402: Grumman F6F Hellcat 70143, Minsi III, as flown by ace pilot David McCampbell of the US Navy in 1944. Complete with optional undercarriage and canopy positions, rocket and bomb load, stand and limited edition info leaflet.

Length 5.75 inches Wingspan 7.25 inches

Built by Grumman as Model G-50 in Bethpage, New York. This aircraft was an early model F6F-5 and retained the windows behind the cockpit, an identical feature to the earlier F6F-3 model. Delivered to the U.S. Navy (USN) as F6F-5 Hellcat bureau number 70143. Assigned to the USS Essex CV-9 to Air Group 15 (AG-15) to Fighting Squadron 15 (VF-15). Assigned to Commanding Officer (C. O.) Commander David McCampbell as the fourth aircraft assigned to him. Nicknamed “Minsi III” in yellow block letters on the right side of the nose. Previously, he was assigned F6F-3 “Monsoon Maiden” until it was damaged by anti-aircraft fire and removed from service on May 20, 1944. Next, F6F-3 “The Minsi” that he flew and claimed 10½ victories. Afterwards, F6F-5 “Minsi II” and finally this aircraft. Flying this Hellcat, McCampbell scored his eleventh to thirty-third and a half aerial victory claims between September 12, 1944 until November 14, 1944 (the last 23½ of his 34 kills) and became the U.S. Navy’s highest scoring ace in World War II. On the right side of the cockpit was McCampbell’s scoreboard with Japanese rising sun flags . On December 1, 1944 this Hellcat was photographed with aces from VF-15 and their scoreboard. Afterwards, this aircraft became part of the fighter replacement pool and was lost. Some sources state this aircraft was lost in December 1944 during an accident while flown by a replacement pilot. Conversely, USN Overseas Aircraft Loss List April 1945 lists F6F-5N Hellcat 70143 as a replacement pool aircraft lost April 2, 1945 off USS Windham Bay (CVE-92) off Okinawa piloted by Ensign L. E. Colvin who was rescued. It is unclear if this is the same aircraft or an error with the bureau number.

The F6F “Hellcat” was basically designed as the “Zero Killer”. It could fly about an average 55 mph faster than the Zero and it was heavier and more powerful than the Zero. The Hellcat also had the highest kill ratio of any American fighter plane during WWII (19 to 1). US Navy pilots referred the Hellcat as the “Aluminum Tank”. F6F was one of the most feared and successful planes in WWII.
This F6F-5, nicknamed “Minsi 111” (White 19), was flown by ace pilot David McCampbell from the carrier USS Essex. He shot down 30 Japanese aircraft with it, becoming one of the highest scoring allied aces of World War 2. In October 1944 McCampbell and his Wingman Lt Roy Rushing attacked a force of 60 plus Japanese aircraft. After 90 minutes of dog-fighting he shot down 9 Japanese aircraft, setting an air combat record. His wingman Rushing shot down another 6!

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