A-1 Skyraider

YouTube - A-1 Skyraider

US$ Cost:
Primary Function:
Weight Empty:
Max. Weight:
Cruise Speed:
Max. Speed:
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First flight:
Year Deployed:
ground attack
Wright R3350
10,550 lbs.
25,000 lbs.
8,000 lbs.
4 - 20 mm
38 ft. 10 in.
50 ft. 9 in.
204 mph
312 mph
2,300 fpm
25,500 feet
3,050 miles
March 19, 1945

A-1 Skyraider

 A-1 Skyraider

The A-1 Skyraider produced by Douglas is considered one of the best attack aircraft ever to fly.  Its origins trace back to World War II, as an upgrade for older aircraft. A prototype first took to the sky on March 19, 1945 with deployment in December of 1946.

When compared with the latest dive bombers of its day, the A-1 Skyraider had an 80 mph higher maximum speed and a 25% greater ordnance payload.

No single engine attack aircraft built was larger than the A-1 Skyraider. It flew the bulk of all ground support missions between 1959 and 1968. The dive bomber was the United States Navy's last propeller driven aircraft.

The A-1 Skyraider has a total of fifteen hard points which enabled it to carry a large variety of weapons. The wings folded so that the aircraft could be stored more easily aboard aircraft carriers.

Douglas produced some 3,180 A-1 Skyraider aircraft. They saw combat in both the Korean and Vietnam Wars where they were invaluable. Their weapons load and endurance combined to far surpass all other aircraft of the time.


A-1 Skyraider

That's A.J. Ash with his A-1 Skyraider from ESM - Ever Soaring Models. It has a glass fibre fuselage and b/u wooden wings. Its wingspan is 72 in. and it is 55 in. long. Features include operating flaps and optional retractable l/g. It can be powered with 25 - 37 cc engines and weighs around 13 lbs. ready to fly.

You can find plans for the 100 in. wingspan A-1 Skyraider from Nick Ziroli plans. It is of all wood construction with a length of 78 in. and weight of around 34 lbs. It uses from 3.7 to 5.2 engines.

Skyshark's A-1 Skyraider is a kit that builds to a 60 in. wingspan with a 47 in. length. It can be powered with from .46 to .61 two cycle, a .91 four cycle engine, or the equivalent electric motor. Weight is from 6 to 8 lbs.

Jim Bell of Waukesha, WI writes: "Completion of the Skyraider by Skyshark was the result of a long Wisconsin winter! 

Noting that the Skyraider prototypes required a fair amount of weight to balance, I made two changes to it: ( 1 ) Reducing the solid sections of wood in the tail feathers and achieving stiffness with carbon fiber reinforced spars, and ( 2 ) Turning the tank sideways so I could locate the servos ahead of the C/G on removable rails. With an OS .60 up front, I obtained the correct balance.

Covering the Skyraider is in Easytex fabric. The panel lines are from Ultrakote and insignias are hand cut Easytex. I used a Precision Fiberglass cowl on the front of the airplane.

I certainly enjoyed building the Skyraider by Skyshark. It is a super flyer!"

We want to thank Jim for telling us about his A-1 Skyraider.