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mrlazorz

Douglas A-1 Skyraider

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Alpha Tester
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Disclaimer: Yes, I know it's an aircraft, but it's carrier-based and also my favorite aircraft. Refrain from complaining about that at least, please.

Douglas A-1 "Skyraider"

Alright, for starters, this is one of the few piston-powered aircraft still operated by US forces into the jet era

Heck, the thing served until 1985, which was remarkable considering it took the A-10's development to replace it for a ground-attack role. With a stupidly large bomb load and claimed to be developed as a replacement to the somewhat-recent "BTD" Naval/Torpedo bomber, it was armed with four 20s and an amazing fourteen hardpoints for ordnance.

Development:

Towards the end of WWII and the constant technology sink that war is, both Marlin and Douglas were building an aircraft to the specifications of the USN set in 1944 for a single-seat naval and torpedo bomber, where both companies saw a great variance in the success of their aircraft. The A-1 saw an initial flight in March, 1945, under the name XBT2D-1, which heavily implies the background of the aircraft as being Douglas' 'sequel' to their BTD bomber. The entire aircraft was developed around the Wright R-3350-XXX, a massive radial that basically decided the dimensions of the aircraft. Production started on the currently-named AD-1 in 1946, with far more success than Marlin's AM Mauler (Which ended after only a few hundred aircraft) and ended up being produced well past the Korean war, up until 1957.

Service:

While being introduced too late to participate in WWII, the AD-1 (renamed to A-1 in 1951 when the USAF, USN, and US Marines merged naming systems) saw plenty of service. Operating from carriers primarily, the A-1 was successfully employed in both Korea and Vietnam. A good 20 variants of the aircraft were produced as well, for varying roles; a couple of notable variants are the AD-4B, capable of deploying a nuclear weapon, and the AD-5 (Later A-5), which served as a multi-role aircraft heavily employed in countless ways, as it could carry a crew of four plus four passengers, twelve troops, four stretchers, or up to one ton of cargo.

Posted Image

An A-1H belonging to Attack Squadron 152 on the Oriskany, CVA-32 in Vietnam. VF/VA-152 History: http://a4skyhawk.org...va152/va152.htm

The aircraft was also successfully employed in Vietnam, where South Vietnamese forces were trained how to operate the aircraft; the aircraft was also employed by Thailand and Cambodia, in addition to those units captured by the North Vietnamese. The aircraft itself was converted for use in Vietnam in 1964, re-designated A-1E or H, and used by US forces. Because it was built as a GA aircraft initially, it found a niche for use as a ground attack aircraft (Hence "A" designation) and the ability for it to soak up damage and carry a bomb load heavier than the aircraft itself on the later models.

The existing size of the aircraft was found to be good for a number of conversions this far along the craft's history as well, such as night-fighter or anti-submarine aircraft where the crew were capable of sitting side-by-side.

Specifications:

for AD-1, initial production variant

INTRODUCED: 1946

AIRCRAFT PRODUCED: 3,180

CREW: 1

DIMENSIONS: L:39.4' W:50.0' H:15.8'

EMPTY WEIGHT: 10,470lbs

MAX TAKE-OFF: 18,029lbs

POWERPLANT: 1X WRIGHT R-3350-24W air-cooled outputting 2500hp

MAXIMUM SPEED: 321mph or 279 knots

MAXIMUM RANGE: 1,553 miles

CEILING: 26,001ft

MAX RATE OF CLIMB: 2,300ft/min

HARDPOINTS: 14

STANDARD LOADOUT: 4x 20mm cannons fitted to wings

OPTIONAL: 12 x rockets OR up to 3.5 tons of ordnance including bombs, torpedoes, gun pods and mine dispensers

Note that due to their being a hell of a lot of variants of this plane that of my sources, I decided to use the one that had the stock production model; the AD-7 (or AD-1J) variant actually has a M.T.O.W. of 25,001 lb and an empty weight of a paltry 10,549 lb in comparison. That's more than double the weight of the plane itself.

Sources used: http://www.boeing.co.../skyraider.pagehttp://www.militaryf...aircraft_id=144http://www.aviastar....s_skyraider.php

Posted Image

dem hardpoints.

  • Cool 8

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Alpha Tester
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Wow this plane was in service till '85? Thats amazing it must have been in service for so long especially considering that jet tech was already quite developed! Heres a +1

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View PostCrazyHeinz, on 25 September 2013 - 12:32 AM, said:

Look again. It's a toilet.
Thats one unique toilet...

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View PostCrazyHeinz, on 25 September 2013 - 12:32 AM, said:

Look again. It's a toilet.
Killed by falling toilet! Imagine having that in your obituary
Edited by pappina

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View Postpappina, on 25 September 2013 - 12:44 AM, said:

Killed by falling toilet! Imagine having that in your obituary
I cracked up and died laughing. lol

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Beta Testers, In AlfaTesters
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It's awesome to see a well-written post about a naval weapon other than a ship.  I love ships of course, but planes are just as important.  +1, and here's to more planes!

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Alpha Tester
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And Sandy also falls into the unique category of being one of the few prop planes that has shot down a jet fighter.                                    http://vnafmamn.com/Skyraider_vs_MIG17.html

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Also, the last aircraft to drop an aerial torpedo in combat; A-1s attacked a dam in Korea with torpedoes to break the floodgates.

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View Poststealth250, on 25 September 2013 - 03:12 AM, said:

I cracked up and died laughing. lol
why didn't you +1 him? >:O

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View PostCrazyHeinz, on 25 September 2013 - 12:27 AM, said:

Clearly the best armament is this:
Posted Image

Well, that's one way to tell your enemy to eat s%$#.
  • Cool 1

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Alpha Tester
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And just think y'all, when you hit tier Ten for the U.S. Flattops, the Spad will most likely one of the birds you can fly off the decks.

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