Grumman TBM-3 Avenger
The RNlNAS received a total of 78 Avengers in three versions, to know 34 TBM-3S2; 24 TBM-3W2 and 20 TMB-3E/TMB-3E2. This were improved versions of the original models.
The S and W-types were the main part of the anti submarine warfare and based on the "Karel Doorman".
The TBM-3W2 was equipped with APS-20 radar.
For nightly operations the TBM-3S was equipped with a search light. Four depth bombs could be carried; further up to six sono buoys could be carried under the wing. The receiver had a retractable antenna with a length of 1.20 m. Also markers, smoke bombs, and rockets could be carried.
In 1951 the first crew were trained in the US.The first TBM-3Ws arrived in august 1953.
Due to lack of spare parts and testing equipment it was not possible to use the aircraft operational.
Also the TBM-3S-toestellen were unavailable, these were delivered in 1954.
VSQ 4 was the first squadron to receive, albeit temporarily the TBM-3W Avenger. It was based for a while aboard the "Doorman", later it was based for training purposes at air base Valkenburg.
September 1954 also squadron 2 was operational and embarked on the "Karel Doorman" in January 1955.
During 1955 the squadron was detached at the British carrier “Bulwark”, because of an overhaul and modification program of the Dutch carrier "Karel Doorman"
From October 1955 both Avenger squadrons were based on air base Valkenburg. Every now and than an exchange occurred with other NATO air bases.
To enlarge the number of Avengers, ten TBM-3E's and ten TBM-3E2's were received from the Royal Navy. These aircraft were delivered in the period January - March 1958. Four aircraft, serials U-27 till U-30, were used for spare parts and are never used.
The TBM-3's were used by all three Avenger squadrons and some were used for training purposes on the "Karel Doorman".
In 1957 squadron 1 received five TBM-3S and three TBM-3W, in 1958 four TBM-3E’s were added. The squadron used also two Harvards for instrumental training.
During 1960 the Avenger was replaced with S-2F Tracker.