F-14 Landing Gear
Each main landing gear shock strut consists of an upper outer cylinder and a lower internal piston which has a maximum stroke of 25 inches. A constant 4-inch stroke remaining is provided in the static ground condition by a hard-step (31.000 psi) in the strut air curve. A side brace is mechanically extended from the inboard side of the strut outer cylinder to engage in a nacelle fitting, and thus provides additional side load support for ground operations. The single-wheeled main landing gear elements retract forwards into wells inside the wing glove, rotating 90° to lie flat. Inboard, outboard, and aft main gear doors are individually actuated closed in sequence to provide a fairing for the retracted gear.
The dual-wheeled nose gear has a shock strut consisting of an outer cylinder and a lower internal piston which has a maximum stroke of 18 inches. During normal ground operations, the strut is fully extended. Pilot control is provided to kneel the strut (4-inch stroke remaining) for catapult operations. During retraction, the fully extended nose strut is rotated forward by the retract actuator into the well, and enclosed by two forward and two aft doors. The nose wheel is fitted with a power nosewheel steering system controlled by the rudder pedals.
Catapult connection components are provided on the nose landing gear shock strut piston. A launch bar attached to the forward face of the nose gear steering collar guides the aircraft onto the catapult track, and serves as a tow link to engage the catapult shuttle. The nose strut automatically extends at shuttle release, imparting a positive pitch rotation to the Tomcat as it leaves the flight deck.
The main landing gear strut, main gear trace, and nose gear strut are all manufactured by Bendix. The aircraft were originally fitted with B. F. Goodrich beryllium brakes, but these were replaced with Goodyear carbon brakes on aircraft subsequent to BuNo 161270, and retrofitted to earlier aircraft in early 1981. The wheels and tires continue to be supplied by B. F. Goodrich. A catapult shuttle tow bar is attached to the nose gear strut.
An arresting hook is attached to a small ventral faring under the aft fuselage. In its retracted position, it extends all the way to the end of the fuselage pancake, immediately below the fuel dump pipe.