Courtesy Aircraft has announced that Grumman F8F-2 Bearcat 121776 is for sale
Perhaps the ultimate iteration of the piston-engined fighter, the F8F Bearcat entered service slightly too late to see action in World War Two, but the type remains a firm favourite on the warbird scene.
Bearcat 121776 is painted in US Navy Blue Angels colours – the Bearcat equipped the famous display team from August 1946 until 1949, replacing the Hellcat. It was the second – and final – piston-engined type to do so.
Registered N68RW in the US, this aircraft (121776) has flown 236 hours since a ground-up restoration was completed in 2005 for the Lone Star Flight Museum. The museum parted company with 121776 in May 2011, and the aircraft was purchased by current owner John O’Connor.
The fact that John is only the aircraft’s second civilian owner perhaps says something about how difficult it is to obtain a Bearcat in today’s market – Courtesy Aircraft state that there are currently only 12 private owners worldwide.
Powered by a Pratt & Whitney R2800-CB-3, this Bearcat is described as being in excellent condition and in stock military configuration. It’s flown for 80 hours since its last overhaul, by Anderson Airmotive in 2019. It received its current Blue Angels paint scheme in 2005. See Courtesy Aircraft’s website for more details.