Old Airplane

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Gabob, Nov 5, 2007.

  1. Gabob

    Gabob Well-Known Member

    Dec 5, 2005
    A couple of years ago my pilot daughter got a friend of hers to take me up in his 1944 SNJ5, WW2 fighter trainer. He let me take the controls and fly it for about 30 minutes. This plane was sent to Pensacola Naval Air Station originally and he has restored it and painted with original paint markings
    Notice the GA Bulldog on my jacket?

    Attached Files:

  2. berto64

    berto64 Active Member


    That must have been fun! Beautiful airplane.

  3. I think I have a picture of one that landed here sometime back. If I can find it I will post it here.
  4. polishshooter

    polishshooter Well-Known Member

    Mar 25, 2001
    There's a company that flies three of them, one in Navy colors as a SNJ, the other two in AAF colors as the AT-6, that spends a couple of months every summer giving rides, and packages out of our local airport.

    The basic ticket is just one, with basic aerobatics, with a video of you in the back seat...the second is more advanced acrobatics, with a "chase plane" recording it, the most expensive package is a "dogfight" between two planes, plus videos...

    The last I checked, it was pretty pricey, but it's neat at any given time in town having one taking off or landing, and the REALLY cool thing is they always do the dogfights at about 3000-5000 feet, roughly above my house....:p

    I LOVE the sound of those radials straining then racing, and on a clear day I have spent a lot of time just watching, and listening....
  5. Gabob

    Gabob Well-Known Member

    Dec 5, 2005
    I was really enjoying playing with the controls etc until I asked Richard how much fuel that 600 HP radial was burning. He said about 30 gallons an hours and I said we better head for the barn
  6. 22WRF

    22WRF Well-Known Member

    May 10, 2004

    a bit about the SNJ from the Naval Museum
    Object Desciption Delivered 16 September 1943, the SNJ-5C Texan on display in the museum spent almost its entire service life flying from Naval Air Station (NAS) Pensacola, Florida, and surrounding airfields. Included were stints flying as a gunnery trainer and assignment to Training Squadron (VN) 6, Eighth Naval District and Training Squadrons (VT) 6 and 4 at Corry and Saufley Fields respectively. In 1948, the aircraft was assigned briefly as a utility aircraft on board the carrier Kearsarge (CV 33) and it subsequently flew in Fleet Air Service Squadron (FASRON) 2 at NAS Quonset Point, Rhode Island, and Attack Squadron (VA) 95 at Naval Auxiliary Air Station (NAAS) Charlestown, Rhode Island. The aircraft was later transferred to the Argentine Navy, in which it flew operationally until eventually acquired by Warbirds West of Compton, California. It arrived at the museum in 1984. The aircraft is displayed in the markings of one assigned to NAAS Barin Field during the 1950s.
    Notes The first design to carry the name of North American Aviation, Inc., the SNJ Texan was a premier aircraft of which any company could be proud, with over 17,000 examples delivered to the U.S. military and numerous foreign nations. The aircraft took shape as an open cockpit monoplane incorporating fixed landing gear and fabric covering on the fuselage. However, an enclosed canopy appeared on the first production versions delivered to the Army Air Corps and Navy, the latter service designating it the NJ-1. With the introduction of the SNJ-1, the Texan evolved into an all-metal aircraft with retractable landing gear, the latter trait greatly improving performance.

    The Navy procured its first NJ-1s 1936, and aviators were still logging hours in SNJs into the late-1950s. During the World War II era, the SNJ served the purpose of transitioning fledgling pilots from biplanes to monoplanes, and they were also employed as gunnery and instrument trainers. In addition, many a carrier pilot of the 1950s logged his first traps in a Texan on the deck of one of the many training carriers that operated in the Gulf of Mexico off Pensacola. An SNJ played an important role in the development of the modern aircraft carrier when it was utilized in 1953 to test day/night touch-and-go and arrested landings and takeoffs in winds of varying force and direction on the Navy's first angled deck aircraft carrier, Antietam (CVA 36). Though designed as trainers, Air Force versions of the aircraft flew combat missions as forward air controllers and export Texans fired weapons in small-scale wars in Asia and Africa. In addition, many a Hollywood movie, most notably the Pearl Harbor epic Tora Tora Tora, employed modified SNJs in the role of Japanese Zero fighters.

    Specifications for SNJ-5 Texan

    Manufacturer: North American Aviation, Inc.
    Dimensions: Length: 29 ft., 6 in.; Height: 11 ft., 8 ½ in.; Wingspan: 42 ft., ¼ in.
    Weights: Empty: 4,158 lb.; Gross: 5,300 lb.
    Power Plant: One 550 HP Pratt & Whitney R-1340-AN-1
    Performance: Maximum Speed: 205 M.P.H. at 5,000 ft.; Service Ceiling: 21,500 ft.; Range: 750 miles
    Armament: Two fixed forward-firing .30-in. guns and provision for one flexible-mounted .30-in gun in rear cockpit
    Crew: Instructor and student

    Aircraft in the Museum Collection

    SNJ-5C (BuNo 51849)- On indoor static display
    SNJ Cutaway- On indoor static display
    SNJ-6 (BuNo 112121)- On outdoor static display
    SNJ-5 (BuNo 52020)- On loan to USS Lexington Museum on the Bay, Corpus Christi, Texas
    SNJ-5B (BuNo 51968)- On loan to Ozark Military Museum Association, Fayetteville, Arkansas
    SNJ-6 (BuNo 112161)- On loan to Naval Air Station (NAS) Whiting Field, Florida
  7. williamd

    williamd New Member

    Mar 21, 2007
    SNJ, Harvard, Texan ... depends on the service you were in.

    North American
    T-6 Texan / SNJ / Harvard

    (Variants/Other Names: See History below)

    John Hyle's North American Harvard (T-6), above the clouds over Texas.
    John Hyle and his beautiful Harvard, above the clouds somewhere over Texas.
    Photo taken by Chuck Burtcher from the back seat of Morris Ray's SNJ.

    History: The North American T-6 Texan was known as "the pilot maker" because of its important role in preparing pilots for combat. Derived from the 1935 North American NA-16 prototype, a cantilever low-wing monoplane, the Texan filled the need for a basic combat trainer during WW II and beyond. The original order of 94 AT-6 Texans differed little from subsequent versions such as the AT-6A (1,847) which revised the fuel tanks or the AT-6D (4,388) and AT-6F (956) that strengthened as well as lightened the frame with the use of light alloys. In all, more than 17,000 airframes were designed to the Texan standards.

    North American's rapid production of the T-6 Texan coincided with the wartime expansion of the United States air war commitment. As of 1940, the required flights hours for combat pilots earning their wings had been cut to just 200 during a shortened training period of seven months. Of those hours, 75 were logged in the AT-6.

    U.S. Navy pilots flew the airplane extensively, under the SNJ designation, the most common of these being the SNJ-4, SNJ-5 and SNJ-6.

    British interest in the Texan design was piqued as early as 1938 when it ordered 200 under the designation Harvard Mk I or "Harvard As Is" for service in Southern Rhodesia training under the Commonwealth Air Training Program. As the Harvard Mk I (5,000+) design was modeled after the early BC-1 design, the subsequent Harvard Mk II utilized the improvements of the AT-6 models. During 1944, the AT-6D design was adopted by the RAF and named the Harvard MK III. This version was used to train pilots in instrument training in the inclement British weather and for senior officers to log required airtime. Much to the chagrin of the Air Force High Command, the Harvard "hack" was often used for non-military activities like joy-riding and unofficial jaunts across the English countryside.

    During 1946, the Canadian Car and Foundry company developed the Harvard Mk IV trainer to the specifications of the T-6G and produced 285 T-6Js under the same design for the USAF Mutual Aid Program. Designated the T-6G, the Texan saw major improvements in increased fuel capacity, an improved cockpit layout, as well as a steerable tailwheel. U.S. Air Force and U.S. Navy forces in the Korean War modified the Texan under the LT-6G designation and employed it in battlefield surveillance.

    Although the US retired the T-6 from active duty by the end of the 1950's, several nations, including Brazil, China, and Venezuela, utilized "the pilot maker" as their basic trainer well into the 1970's. Today, over 350 T-6 Texans remain in airworthy condition. Most of the former "hacks" are based in North America and are a reminder of the importance of simplicity in training and function. [History by James A. Jensen]

    Nicknames: Pilot Maker; Old Growler (USA); Window Breaker (UK); Mosquito (Korean war USAF LT-6G Forward Air Control aircraft); J-Bird (SNJ)

    Specifications (SNJ-5):
    Engine: One 550-hp Pratt & Whitney R-1340-AN-1 radial piston engine
    Weight: Empty 4,158 lbs., Max Takeoff 5,300 lbs.
    Wing Span: 42ft. 0.25in.
    Length: 29ft. 6in.
    Height: 11ft. 9in.
    Maximum Speed: 205 mph
    Ceiling: 21,500 ft.
    Range: 750 miles
    Armament: None

    Number Built: 17,000+

    Number Still Airworthy: 350+

    Attached Files:

    • SNJ.jpg
      File size:
      17.2 KB
  8. Took a little time but here they are. Great old aircraft in amazing shape.

    Attached Files:

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