The Tracker is a twin 1,136.4kW Wright R-1820-82WA-powered carrier-based antisubmarine search and attack aircraft, produced originally for the US Navy but currently also in service with the air forces and navies of several countries.
The prototype flew for the first time on 4 December 1952 and more than 1,000 S-2s were delivered by Grumman. The initial production version was designated S-2A (CP-121, formerly CS2F-1 for the Canadian version). Next came the S-2B with new anti-submarine detection equipment; the TS-2B trainer; S-2G with enlarged bomb bays to house two homing torpedoes (most converted to US-2C or RS-2C); S-2D with improved anti-submarine equipment, wider cockpit and longer range; S-2E with improved anti-submarine equipment; S-2F with uprated submarine detection equipment; S-2G, early version uprated with a Martin Marietta kit; US-2A/C, S-2A/C converted for target towing; US-2B utility/transport conversion of the S-2B; RS-2C, S-2C converted for photo-reconnaissance/ survey work; AS-2D, S-2D modified for night attack; and E-1B Tracer, AEW version with a radome on its back.
| ENGINE||2 x Wright R-1820-82WA Cyclone, 1137kW|
| Take-off weight||13222 kg||29150 lb|
| Empty weight||8505 kg||18750 lb|
| Wingspan||22.12 m||73 ft 7 in|
| Length||13.26 m||44 ft 6 in|
| Height||5.05 m||17 ft 7 in|
| Wing area||46.08 m2||496.00 sq ft|
| Max. speed||426 km/h||265 mph|
| Cruise speed||241 km/h||150 mph|
| Range w/max.fuel||2092 km||1300 miles|
| ARMAMENT||one nuclear dive bomb, sonobouy launchers, bombs, missiles, torpedos|
|John S. Shackelford, jssem=frontier.com, 26.02.2014|
Served VS-21 as an AZ3. Years of service 1967 t0 1970 at North Island Naval Air Station in Coronado CA. Two WESTPAC's. Took care of aircraft maintenance logbooks and coordinated the aircraft maintenance program. San Diego was nice....great weather. Hong Kong liberty.
|Wendell D Seal, wdseal=verizon.net, 17.01.2014|
I was an AT and worked on and flew as an air crewman on the S2F1/2 and S2F-3's. I was in VS-37 from mid 1959 until late 1961. We were land based at either Los Alimitos and NAS North Island, CA. We also went on a West Pac tour on the USS Hornet.
|Dean Marchione, dbenmark=verizon.net, 22.12.2013|
Did my training tour for a VS squadron in the RAG squadron VS-41 at NAS North Island, then reported to VS-38 as a engine mechanic on the S2F-E Tracker aircraft. Flew many missions as a third seat man flying from the decks of the U.S.S.BENNINGTON CVS-20. Made one WEST-PAC cruise aboard CVS20, then got orders to FLIGHT ENGINEER school and returned to the AEW community with AEWBARRO-PAC, then on to VW-1 TYPHOON TRACKERS on Guam. Was only in the VS community for two years, but loved the work and the flight time in a Grumman S2F. I was/am "CAR CRAZY" and love classics and cab over engine COE trucks. I always liked the looks of the fuselage on the S2F because I thought it looked like a 1940 FORD COE.
|Mike Dew, m.dew=sbcglobal.net, 26.11.2013|
Assigned to VS-37 from 1975 - 1978. Made one cruise with S2 before the transistion to S-3s. Worked I-Level on the USM-403 HATS System.
|Lee VB, vanb-mchsi.com, 21.11.2013|
VS-24, 1974-76, last S-2G deployment on board Saratoga. Started in Line Shack and ended up flight crew. Good times.
|James A. Blake, pennjab1=yahoo.com, 23.10.2013|
I'm writing this in 2013 so my memory is not so precise now. I was aboard the Intrepid; 1965. Was trained in air anti sub warfare in Norfolk and Key West. Flew and worked on the Grumman S2 Tracker. The day after I was separated I reported for work at Grumman Aerospace. Then on to Cape Kennedy for the Apollo space program. What a trip!!!
|Donald Emrick, emricks=frontier.com, 15.04.2013|
Was an ADR in VT-28 NAS Corpus Christi Tx From feb. 67 to july 69. Flew many X country flights. Loved working on those 1820 engines. those were some of the most memorable years. Really enjoyed it.
|Michael W. Wewers, Revosimike=Gmail.com, 10.02.2013|
I fail to ever see the fact that 4 S2-D's were also employed by (Legacy) US Customs Air Support Branches in the mid to late 1970's for A/C Interdiction purposes. They had their APS 88 radars modified along with R&D for the original FLIRs ultimately to utilized by later generation Navy Fighters etc. Unfortunately I only have a couple of old photographs, but you would be welcome to have copies. At the time I was the Chief of the Air Support Branch at Homestead AFB, Fl. Too bad this great old birds do not get some glory for their participation in the "Was on Drugs". Good stories also available. Thanks you.
|Gayheart, jggayheart=wowway.com, 03.02.2013|
This is a E-Mail correction posted on 01.02.2013
|Garry Iversen, garryivy=yahoo.com, 02.02.2013|
I served in the Navy from Jan.64 to Dec.67 and was in VS-37 out of North Island NAS. We deployed onboard the USS Hornet. I have about 850 hours in the back seat of the S2D/E model as a radar and MAD equipment operator. My last carrier landing was my 100th addrested landing. I was an enlisted man but the pilots would let we sneak up front and fly the plane for short periods of time. They didn't tell me about the trim controls and I remember it felt like I was flying a truck. I later got my private/comm Inst. tickets and retired in 2007 as an air traffic controller at Los Angeles Center and High Desert Approach Control at Edwards Air Force Base. S2's are still being used locally as fire fighters. Great airplane.
|Gayheart, jggayherat=wowway.com, 01.02.2013|
Was in VT31 at NAS Corpus from 67to70 rate was ADR love the sound of the engines Had a lot of fun working on the S2
made A lot of friends.
|LCDR Gordon A Bonnel USN(ret), RAFS_stoof=sbcglobal.net, 28.11.2012|
If you are interested in the S-2 check out the RAFS website and drop me an email
|Frenchy Dampier, fdampier05=yahoo.com, 05.11.2012|
I flew off both the Bennington and the Ticonderoga in 1968 &1970 with VS38 My crew was the only crew to never fail to fly in 1970.
|Dave McLean, mcleandg692=att.net, 16.08.2012|
As an Ensign and nugget naval aviator, I flew the US-2B with VC-2 Det Jax '74-'75. Called ourselves "skeet for the fleet" our primary mission being towing targets for ships to practice gunnery. Thankfully, the Det was decommissioned and I headed for VP-24 and P-3C's.
|Mikey, airplanebuff=yahoo.com, 21.06.2012|
The S-2 Tracker Is 1 Of my best planes where i grew up i remember seeing S-2s working the pattern at the airbase they were at all day u can c S-2s doing Tand Gs it was great i wood never guss i wood Reloading them with fire retardent 4 the CDF its still help fighting fires in CA. Thanks
|Joe Sitz, jhsitz=comcast.net, 19.06.2012|
I flew stoof (C-1/S-2) at NAF Naples (1972-1975, appx 1000 hrs). Mostly towing targets for fleet to shoot at and land logistics around Mediterannean. Good bird but agree w/ the comments on having rudder boost.
|Robert Costello, rcostello50=hotmail.com, 06.06.2012|
Flew 500 hours as a plane captain ADR2 in Rosevelt Roads from 75 to 78. Had the C1A version and it was a great plane. Flew SAR and had a couple cat launches and landings on the uss Nimitz. Great plane, lots of fun, and great for a 20 year old cutting his teeth on radials before going to jets. Was fortunate to be in the last ADR class at NTTC in Memphis. Still working jets for P&W. Most of you know who that is.
|Ralph Spaulding, ralphswa=hotmail.com, 15.05.2012|
I was a Lt in 1959-61 and flew as a pilot from North Island and the Kearsarge. I got to North Island in 59, and stayed in the RAG until VS-21 returned from its Westpac Cruise, then joined the squadron until the split was made to form VS-29 where I served the rest of my tour. I made one Westpac deployment and got my 100 traps before going off to PG school in 61. Most fun flying was working with the destroyers to confirm sonar contacts with MAD. I would put the top of the destroyer's mast on the horizon to lock in about 90 feet off the water and then fly to the contact to look for MAD confirmation. The least fun was trying to fly a decent Julie pattern while listening for the "clicks." Landing at night on a pitching deck also had to qualify as a "least fun" activity. But I rescued a couple of tail hooks before they got tossed overboard after X traps, had them chrome plated and still show them proudly on my nick nack shelf. I have about 20 minutes worth of movies taken with my 8 mm camera of the S2 landing and taking off from the Kearsarge. It has been made into a DVD so if you would like a copy, drop me an e-mail. You will go into my junk folder so be sure to put in an attention geting subject and send it more than once so I will eventually find it. Also, I just had a model built by Russ Busy, a museum-quality model builder, and took a few pictures of it. The model has been modified to make it look exactly like the planes we flew. As soon as I figure out how, I'll post the photos to You Tube. The movie is too long for You Tube.
|Larry Lynch, larryspace=att.net, 15.05.2012|
Correction to my last comments: it should read ECM/MAD, the SONO system controls were part of the radar station. In addition, the mission was started from the Princeton about 450 miles east of northern Honshu...and after 4 1/2 hours in the air, was out of range of any air station.
|Larry Lynch, larryspace=att.net, 15.05.2012|
From Princeton to Shangrila...
I was an AT aircrewman in S2F1/2 while attached to VS23 in 1958-59. We deployed to WestPac in 1958 aboard the Princeton, CVS37. I'll never forget one dark night while out on a single aircraft special communications mission, we returned to the ship, and no ship in sight. With about an hour of fuel left, and no idea where our ship was, and under strict radio silence, things got a little intense in the cabin. We climbed out to about 10 thousand and fired up the radar for one or two sweeps every few minutes. I was on the APS-38 and found a small cluster of targets about 100 miles from us. We flew to within visual range and saw the USS Shangrila, secured from flight quarters with aircraft cabled down all over the flight deck. We had about 30 minutes of fuel left and tried to contact the ship by flashing code with the handheld Aldus lamp in the cockpit. They came up on UHF Guard frequency and we told them our plight. It took the better part of our 30 minutes to get the deck cleared and the ship made continuous circles to smooth out the 10 to 15 foot swells in case we had to ditch. Finally, we got the Charlie and came down with one engine sputtering, caught the third wire and were aboard. When we stepped out of the plane I heard the ship's bullhorn announce: "You have just saved four souls!" The others on the plane were Lt Phillips, pilot, AT3 James Budd, ECM/Sono, and myself on radar. I don't remember the co-pilots name. My deepest gratitude to all involved that night, the flight crew and the ships crew that made landing possible, and of course, the great Stoof that brought us thru.
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