Brewster Bermuda (SB2A Buccaneer)

A picture of the Brewster Bermuda

The Brewster Bermuda is perhaps the least successful Allied aircraft of World War II.  The U.S. Navy first ordered the design in 1939 as the SB2A Buccaneer.  The British and Dutch also ordered versions of the aircraft in the early desperate days of the war.  Brewster’s endemic production problems and the generally poor performance of the type resulted in delays that prevented the Dutch from taking delivery of any of their aircraft before the country was overrun by Germany.  The British did take possession of some of their aircraft, but like the U.S. Navy found them to be totally unsuited to combat duty.  The Americans and British eventually used some of the aircraft as target tugs and trainers, but many were sent straight from the assembly line to surplus scrap piles when the U.S. government shut down the Brewster production lines.

Service History

One of only two Bermudas known to exist this aircraft was found at an airfield in Tullahoma, Tennessee in the 1970s.  The remains of British markings are visible on the fuselage leading to the conclusion that this is one of the British aircraft that was left undelivered at the end of Brewster’s existence.  The aircraft was recovered by the Military Aircraft Restoration Corp. for rebuilding.  In 2004, it was placed on loan to the Pima Air & Space Museum for restoration and display.  The aircraft was purchased by the museum in 2015.

Wingspan

47 ft

Length

39 ft 2 in.

Height

15 ft 5 in.

Weight

14,289 lbs (loaded)

Maximum Speed

274 MPH

Service Ceiling

24,900 ft

Range

1,650 miles

Engine

One Wright R2600-8 radial with 1,700 horsepower

Crew

2

Manufacturer
Brewster

Markings
Fleet Air Arm, Royal Navy, 1943

Designation
SB2A

Serial Number
Unknown

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