Squadron/Signal | 5565: F4U Corsair Walk Around
Reviewed by Kevin Williams
One of the many volumes in the Walk Around series (2011) that I've purchased, is this book on the Vought F4U Corsair, the infamous "bent winged bird". Authored by David Doyle, this book, as the name implies, takes a look at the details of this rather interesting WWII Naval and Marine fighter aircraft. (I've long been a fan of the iconic Corsair, so this book is right up my alley.)
The walk around series from Squadron/Signal is well know to most by now, and this book follows in the footsteps of its predecessors, offering up a general overview of airframe components and details. The book is rounded out by some typically nice illustrations by Don Greer, who I consider to be one of the best aviation artists out there.
This volume has ample coverage of the 'pit, landing gear, gear wells, weapons, flight controls, wing fold mechanisms and various exterior details.
There are several colorful profiles in this particular release, as well as some interesting detail illustrations, and I, for one, am very happy to see that.
Despite having plenty of references on the Corsair previously, but seemingly always on the hunt for more, I was tickled silly to see this title released, and it is indeed a handsome and handy bit of reference too. One thing that some may consider a minor drawback, is brief coverage of several sub-types, rather than concentrating on one in particular, the F4U-1D for example. As a consequence of this approach, some details that are only relevant to one sub-type, may or may not be depicted for the other sub-types. I've grown accustomed to the Squadron/Signal approach, and accept the limitations imposed by the brevity of their publications, in this case 80 pages. Still, I consider them all to be great value, and worthwhile additions to my personal library.
This publication, like most (but not all) titles, is a nice blend of black & white and color photographs (mostly color, and almost always restored examples, flying or non), and as the title implies, is predominantly detail oriented. All books in the series are printed on good quality glossy paper, which I also consider to be a big plus in their favor. The book is also interspersed with various component illustrations and color profiles. To me, the brilliant artwork and illustrations by Don Greer are one of the very strong points of many a Squadron/Signal publication, and add a great additional dimension to the overall appeal and value of the volumes.
Typical Photo Excerpts
Certainly one of the strengths of this series, are the detail photographs of various airframe elements.
As stated previously, the artwork of Don Greer is of an unusually high quality (in my opinion), and adds wonderfully to the overall completeness and professionalism of the publication.
All things considered, I view these walk around books as not only being good value, given their (to me) very reasonable cost, but also see them as making an excellent primary or supplemental reference. While there are, in certain instances, books that cover these subjects better and in more depth, the overall impact and quality of these volumes, makes them quite desirable references unto their own, and are therefore highly recommended.
If you have even but a passing interest in the venerable Corsair, I'd heartily recommend this book.
Review copy compliments of my own decrepit wallet.
Further Recommended Reading/Reference
© Kevin Williams 2016
This review was published on Tuesday, August 16 2016; Last modified on Tuesday, August 16 2016