A-7 Corsair II Exhibit

Removing the Stress Plates Vought A-7 Corsair II Jet Fighter

This is what the a7 corsair II looked like at NAS Lemoore, California
Removing the Stress Plates from the Vought A-7 Corsair II before removing the horizontal stabilizers at the Bloomington Prairie Aviation Museum in Bloomington Illinois.

Vought A-7 Corsair II from VA-125
A-7 Corsair II Recovery Exhibit
Prairie Aviation Museum

Removing the Stress Plates from the Vought A-7 Corsair II before removing the horizontal stabilizers at the  Bloomington Prairie Aviation Museum in Bloomington Illinois

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Removing the Stress Plates
Removing the Stress Plates on the A-7 Corsair II

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A-7 on the USS Kitty Hawk


Removal of the Stress Plates before removal of the Horizontal Stabilizers, on this plane they're actually called the UHT (Unit Horizontal Tail).  This is called the UHT because both sides of the horizontal tail move exactly the same time. These are not really horizontal stabilizers because there is no fixed portion of the horizontal.  Most planes have a horizontal stabilizer and an elevator.  On the A-7 there is only a moveable part and no fixed portion. 

On planes like the F-14 Tomcat and all of the modern jet fighters, there is no UHT.  Both sides move independently of each other, totally controlled by the flight computer.  The horizontal tail on modern jet fighters provides both pitch and roll components of the aircraft movements.  On the A-7, the horizontal tail provides only pitch movement.  The newer jet fighters with the independently moveable horizontal tails supplement the roll axis control that ailerons only control on the A-7 and most other civilian aircraft.  The independently moveable horizontal tail greatly enhances the control of the aircraft at all air speeds.

Click Here's a short story.  When I was attached to VA-125 I watched a sailor run down the back of the A-7 and then jump on the UHT.  This was a very regular thing for young men to do when they were working on top of the airplane and then were ready to get down.  But, this time, someone had the hydraulic cylinder disconnected and there was nothing holding the UHT solid.  The entire tail pitched down and he had a big surprise as he was spit off of the back of the airplane and onto his, well, I will let you fill that last word in.



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