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Aeronavale V-507 F-14A Vagabond - Flottille 14F by comradeloganov Aeronavale V-507 F-14A Vagabond - Flottille 14F by comradeloganov
A great deal of myth surrounds the Aéronavale use of the Vought V-507 Vagabond, much of it the fault of the French Navy itself. The Aéronavale wasn’t confused about the aircraft's intended role, but they would often give misleading statements about the aircraft's roles and capabilities to press or politicians that may not have understood the need for the aircraft the same way the Marine Nationale did.

Despite the misinformation surrounding it, the operational needs that drove the French Navy’s acquisition of the Vagabond are actually pretty clear and very similar to the US Navy’s original Fleet Air Defense (FAD) and later VFX programs. The threat to the French carriers posed by Soviet Naval Aviation bombers armed with large anti-ship missiles had only been growing since the Clemenceau and Foch were launched, but it was the appearance of the Tu-22M ‘Backfire’ that truly rendered the F-8 Crusader completely incapable of defending their charges. An aircraft with a higher top speed, far longer range, better radar, and much more capable beyond visual range (BVR) missiles was needed as soon as possible. Unfortunately, the small size of French carriers also meant that there was no way that an aircraft with the necessary performance would ever be able to operate from the decks of the Clemenceau-class ships. The French Navy benefitted from operational factors that the US Navy did not, however.

US supercarriers had to be able to operate completely independently in the North Atlantic or Pacific in environments where the only land for hundreds of miles was likely to be hostile territory defended by enemy air cover. French carriers would typically be operating in the Mediterranean, a comparatively small body of water ringed by friendly air bases. The main aerial threat to the French Navy in the Mediterranean came from Soviet Naval Aviation (AVMF) long range bombers armed with anti-ship missiles. The over 500 nm combat radius of the F-14 would allow it to cover most of the Mediterranean from only a couple of NATO bases. This could also be extended through the use of Etendard buddy tankers once the F-14s rendezvoused with the carrier air group.

Regardless of Aéronavale rhetoric, the Vought V-507 was almost exclusively operated from land bases, where it would fly far out over the sea to guard French ships from aerial threats. It was most certainly not an attempt by the French Navy to compete with the Armée de l'Air with its own naval “air force”. Rather, it was the result of a practical assessment of the operating environment and realistic capabilities of France's carrier air groups pitted against the threat of Soviet Naval Aviation. In that role, Aéronavale F-14 units would often migrate from NATO base to NATO base during a carrier’s Mediterranean cruise, truly living up to its name of “Vagabond”.
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:iconthewhatifguy:
TheWhatIfGuy Featured By Owner May 5, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Love all your work! What are you using to create them?
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:iconcomradeloganov:
comradeloganov Featured By Owner May 5, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Thanks very much! These are done almost entirely in Photoshop, although Talos does the line art in a vector art program (typically Illustrator, IIRC), then exports them for me to play with. It looks like you do your own profiles, too, so you may want to check out the Beyond the Sprues forum. I'm sure they'd appreciate seeing your work there.

beyondthesprues.com/Forum/inde…
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:iconthewhatifguy:
TheWhatIfGuy Featured By Owner May 5, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Awesome! thanks for the feedback :) 
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:iconcolonelbsacquet:
ColonelBSacquet Featured By Owner Apr 7, 2016
Oh, a little thing about french language.

"Corsair" takes a final "e", in french. An Irish or Aussie or American can be a corsair, but a French can be a corsaire.

;-)

P.S.:
Nice thought from you to have put the light acccent on the first "e" of "Aéronavale". ;-)
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:iconcomradeloganov:
comradeloganov Featured By Owner Apr 7, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Thanks, but I took that directly from the French Wikipedia page on 14F.

fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flottill…

I think they took their nickname from the first planes they operated, the F4U Corsair and seemed to keep the English spelling when they did so. That is a guess on my part, though.
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:iconcolonelbsacquet:
ColonelBSacquet Featured By Owner Apr 8, 2016
Your guess seems very plausible, indeed.
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:iconrygartarrow:
RygartArrow Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2016
Very nice! What about german Marineflieger version?
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:iconcomradeloganov:
comradeloganov Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Hmm, it's something to consider. I already did that scheme on the XB-51. Did you see that one?

img.photobucket.com/albums/v13…
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:iconrygartarrow:
RygartArrow Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2016
No, but a really like it :) 
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:iconcomradeloganov:
comradeloganov Featured By Owner Mar 21, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Thanks!
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:iconpassin:
Passin Featured By Owner Mar 19, 2016
A pretty nice piece. Good work
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:iconcomradeloganov:
comradeloganov Featured By Owner Mar 19, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Thanks! I'm glad you like it!
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