F.12/43 > Hornet
N.5/44 > Sea Hornet
So hardly designed from the beginning as a naval fighter.
I had written: Again true, but not entirely so. The Hornet was designed from the beginning with the intention of producing a naval variant to be used on carriers. The required features for the development of such a variant were therefore incorporated into the the original design and construction of the land plane that led to the Sea Hornet.
Notice that I did not say that the Hornet "was designed from the beginning as a naval fighter," only that it was intended
to later have a naval variant
to be used on carriers. It was that variant that became the Sea Hornet.
Wikipedia says the following:The Hornet prototype RR 915
Designed as a private venture for a long-range fighter destined for the Pacific Theatre in the war against Japan, Specification F.12/43 was written around the type. From an early stage it was also envisaged that the Hornet could be adapted for naval use, operating from aircraft carriers. As a result priority was given to ease of control, especially at low speeds, and good pilot visibility. Construction was of mixed balsa/plywood similar to the Mosquito, but the Hornet differed in incorporating stressed Alclad lower-wing skins bonded to the wooden upper wing structure using the then-new adhesive Redux. The two wing spars were redesigned to withstand a higher safety factor of 10 versus 8.
And further down in the article:The Hornet was designed with the possibility of naval service in carriers firmly in mind. To this end good low speed handling was required, along with good all-round visibility for the pilot. The basic Hornet design excelled at meeting these requirements.
(All underlining mine.)
Also, since the fighter was "destined for the Pacific Theatre in the war against Japan," and since that war was, in very large part, a naval
air war, it is perfectly logical that a naval variant was considered from early in the plane's design. It shows that DeHavilland was an ahead-thinking organization.
Edited by Lightning, 06 August 2011 - 12:44 PM.