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NA Harvard Mk.1- Do any survive?

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  • Ant.H
    Rank 5 Registered User
    • Jan 2000
    • 3065

    NA Harvard Mk.1- Do any survive?

    Just out of curiosity, I've been hunting around on Google etc for a while trying to find surviving examples of the Harvard Mk.1 or NA BC-1. With such large numbers of Harvards/Texans still around I thought that surely some of the earliest ones must still be around, but I can't find any record of a single survivor. Does anyone know of any?

    Out of interest, what would it take to create a Mk.1? Would it be possible to back-date a later example to Mk.1 standard? I have to say I've always preferred the more curvy, graceful look of the earlier examples to the straighter lines of the later ones.
    "Talking about airplanes is a very pleasant mental disease." Sergei Sikorsky
  • Mark_pilkington
    Rank 9999 Registered User
    • Jun 2004
    • 1791

    #2
    There are no recorded survivors of the Harvard Mark 1 or NA BC-1, the oldest and most similar "NA-16" family survivors are the NA-16 in Sweden, the NA-16 in South America or the CAC Wirraways in Australia.

    The Harvard Mark I or NA BC-1 are quite different from the later T6-SNJ or other Harvard series of aircraft with the primary differences being:

    1. Steel tube rear fuselage frame c/w monocoque structure & aluminium skin
    2. Fabric side panels on both forward and rear fuselage c/w aluminium panels
    3. straight trailing edge wing outer panels c/w swept forward trailing edge
    4. round/flat bottomed rudder c/w triangular rudder.

    many of these differences are shared with the CAC Wirraway.

    There have been a number of hybriad "NA" aircraft restored in the USA in recent times including a Boomerang "lookalike", NA64's etc.

    It would be possible to create a Harvard mark I in a similar vein but the most obvious changes would be the steel tube and fabric covered fuselage.

    A Wirraway steel tube "rear fuselage" frame, lower monocoque and either Wirraway or T6 "forward" steel tube frame would seem to be the basic requirements.

    Fuselage capstrips based on the Wirraway could be reproduced, along with new fabric side panels.

    The straight trailing edge wing outer panels are like hens teeth and it would be simpler to stick to more readily available T6/SNJ Wing throughout as few would pick the difference.

    The T6/SNJ tailplanes and elevators and fin should attach to the Wirraway rear fuselage without any modification, while a T6 triangular rudder would need to be rebuilt to form the rounded/flat bottom rudder of the Harvard mark I, or alternatively an SNJ-2 rudder could be obtained if they are readily available.

    There are many other differences in the form of the Centre Section, cockpit furnishings and engine cowling however the above would seem to break the back of the problem?

    Regards

    Mark Pilkington
    "Never has a Country so Big!, owed so Much!, to those who Flew!"

    Comment

    • Ant.H
      Rank 5 Registered User
      • Jan 2000
      • 3065

      #3
      Hi Mark,

      Thanks very much for your comprehensive reply, just the kind of thing I was hoping for. You confirm what I suspected- that the later examples have very little in common with the Harvard Mk.1! What does surprise me though is how you seem to be suggesting that the Wirriway is a very close match airframe-wise. I've always been lead to believe that CAC tinkered with the detail design and came up with an aircraft that had little in common with its US cousins. Could you possibly shed some more light on the similarities/ differences between the Wirriway and the US built examples?
      "Talking about airplanes is a very pleasant mental disease." Sergei Sikorsky

      Comment

      • OHOPE
        Rank 5 Registered User
        • Feb 2007
        • 359

        #4
        I believe the Swedish one was recreated a few years ago starting with Wirraway remains .

        Comment

        • TEXANTOMCAT
          Rank 5 Registered User
          • Mar 2004
          • 4685

          #5
          OHOPE - yep you're right.

          Whilst not a Harvard a very early SNJ is extant from a crash site and is under rebuild at present in Europe.

          TT
          Our Beech 18 & T-6@www.beechrestorations.com
          Visit Sywell Aviation Museum @
          www.sywellaerodrome.co.uk/museum.php
          Sywell Airshow 17.8.2014

          Comment

          • Stieglitz
            Rank 5 Registered User
            • Feb 2004
            • 2364

            #6
            Interesting topic about this well known trainer. Does someone have a picture with a Harvard MKI, NA BC-1 or such a rare NA-16? Would be great to see how the Harvard/T6 story started.

            Greets,

            Stieglitz
            http://www.urselavia.be/

            Comment

            • Mark_pilkington
              Rank 9999 Registered User
              • Jun 2004
              • 1791

              #7
              Ant,

              here is some info on the parentage of the Wirraway in North American family tree previously posted on the KPAF board

              the NA-16 was "Britishized" by Australia into the Wirraway with BA hardware on u bolts etc, but is essentially a licence built NA-16, The Nearest American Service A/c to the Wirraway was the BC-1, but with non-geared 1340.



              regards

              Mark Pilkington


              ******************************
              ******************************

              30th July 2004, 12:02
              Mark_pilkington
              Rank 3 Registered User Join Date: Jun 2004
              Posts: 76

              NA-16- Wirraways, Harvards T6 and SNJ's

              --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

              Wirraways NA-16s, T6/SNJ & Harvards are all part of the successful North American NA-16 family of trainers.

              The North American Trainer model numbers and Contract numbers become quite confusing, the following is based on the WARBIRDTECH series NA-16/AT-6/SNJ

              The Wirraway is a direct NA-16 derivative with the distinctive all steel tube/fabric covered fuselage and straight trailing edge wing (The NA-32 and NA-33 were "contract" numbers as well as "model" numbers), The Contract numbers primarily related to the customer order, CAC received contract numbers 32 (actually an NA-16-1A with fixed gear and 2 blade prop), and contract number 33 (actually an NA-16-2k with retract gear and 3 blade prop and geared 1340).

              The Harvard 1 is also an NA-16 derivative (NA-49 actually an NA-16-1E) while the Yale, NJ-1, SNJ-2 and BC-1 are themselves all seperate branch off derivatives of the NA-16 developments with various combinations of tapered wing, straight wing trailing edges, monocoque and steel tube rear fuselages.

              The NA-16 design evolved further from the BC-1 (NA-26) and BT-9 (NA-29) family of T6 Ancestors with differing engine sizes, The NA-16 model references cease at the Contract number NA-56 which is an AN-16-4 and the BC-1A (NA-55), Yale (NA-57) and BT-14 (NA-5 at last started to bring together the monocoque fuselage and tapered wing and adoption of the ungeared P&W 1340 Wasp engine.

              AT6 as contract number NA-59 commences the new T6/Harvard/SNJ family derivatives and leads on to the SNJ-2 as contract NA-65, Harvard 11 as contract number NA-66.

              Finally the definative AT6A/SNJ-3 emerge as contract NA-77, with a multitude of contract numbers applying to the following T6-C,D,F and G, SNJ-4,5,6 and Harvard 111 and 1V models but are all effectively the same basic airframe structure of monocoque fuselage and tapered wing, hidden inside them all is the steel tube front fuselage frame derived from the basic NA-16.

              regarding the posts above regarding Harvard II and IIA differences, the Harvard II (NA-66) was built by North American and "was effectively a BC-1A fitted with british equipment and circular control column"(T6 in Action - signal publications), whereas the Mk IIA were lend lease T6-C's (NA-8, explaining the US cockpit configurations.

              The Harvard IIB were built in Canada by Noordyun and was similar to the NA built Harvard II above (but given no NA contract number
              "Never has a Country so Big!, owed so Much!, to those who Flew!"

              Comment

              • Mark_pilkington
                Rank 9999 Registered User
                • Jun 2004
                • 1791

                #8
                Here are some pics of early NA-16 derivitaves related to the Harvard Mk 1




                An early NA-16 form, fixed undercarriage, open cockpit -
                the Granddaddy of T6/SNJ/Harvards





                A USAAC BC-1 the US equivalent to the RAF Harvard I and RAAF Wirraway




                A USAAC BT-9, a fixed U/C version with smaller engine, unfortunately none survive today, this photo shows the fabric side panels to great detail, there is a monocoque belly skin along the underside of the rear fuselage on the NA-16's.





                The recreated NA-16 in Sweden using a Wirraway rear steel tube fuselage





                The original NA-16 surviving in South America (this is a fixed U/C version)




                The 8th production, and oldest surviving Wirrawat A20-10 at the Australian National Aviation Museum




                A Bare Wirraway steel fuselage frame showing the engine mount fitted (no firewall in place) and the rear steel fuselage frame, missing its lower monocoque belly skin.






                A photo source of various NA types

                http://www.aerofiles.com/_noram.html


                regards

                Mark Pilkington
                Last edited by Mark_pilkington; 4th January 2008, 06:10.
                "Never has a Country so Big!, owed so Much!, to those who Flew!"

                Comment

                • Scorpion89
                  Senior Member
                  • Dec 2007
                  • 301

                  #9
                  As mark has point out that there are no early BC-1/Mk.1/SNJ-1 that have been put on display or flying. But thats not to say that their aren't any that survive.

                  In my master list for Canada I have 7 Mk1s still out in the woods and I know of the location of a BC-1 in the States but the problem with these airframes are the location which make them very hard to go after.

                  As for the SNJ-1 I know of 2 crash sites on eof them I'm going to try to get to sometime in 2008.

                  Now there are a few BC-1A tat are out there also, there are three in the Mountains of Calf that could be recovered and rebuild to at least one flyere and one static using parts from later T-6s.

                  Its a shame that while we in the Warbird Community are big on hunting down the P-51 or F4U out in the wilds some of the rarer Trainers are out there and no one(well not everyone ) don't want to go hunting for them.

                  I know they aren't the big money ticket thing but it would be cool to have a BT-9/BT-8 and other late 20s early 30s trainers at Attack aircraft recovered.

                  Comment

                  • Stieglitz
                    Rank 5 Registered User
                    • Feb 2004
                    • 2364

                    #10
                    Great to learn here! thanks for all the info and those pictures. I realy enjoyed to see those early Harvard variants!

                    Thanks all!

                    Stieglitz
                    http://www.urselavia.be/

                    Comment

                    • Pat B
                      Registered User
                      • Jan 2017
                      • 2

                      #11
                      Does anyone have any information on the Harvard Mk1 survivors in Canada mentioned by Scorpion89? Just curious as to if they were total write offs and why they haven't been recovered?

                      Comment

                      • BennoT6
                        Rank 5 Registered User
                        • Feb 2004
                        • 129

                        #12
                        Originally posted by Pat B View Post
                        Does anyone have any information on the Harvard Mk1 survivors in Canada mentioned by Scorpion89? Just curious as to if they were total write offs and why they haven't been recovered?
                        There were only 30 Mk.Is serving in Canada, serials 1321 - 1350. From July 1939 with the last one wfu in July 1946 (1325). Hard to believe that this many would survive in the woods. Not impossible though.

                        Regards,

                        BennoT6

                        Comment

                        • DaveF68
                          Rank 5 Registered User
                          • Jun 2004
                          • 1791

                          #13
                          I'd imagine they are known crash sites where there might be a few remains

                          Comment

                          • Pat B
                            Registered User
                            • Jan 2017
                            • 2

                            #14
                            Originally posted by DaveF68 View Post
                            I'd imagine they are known crash sites where there might be a few remains
                            The only reason I ask is that I am currently exploring the possibility and feasibility of retrofitting a set of Harvard Mk 2 outer wing panels to a set of Harvard Mk 1 panels. Does anyone know if this has been done before? I see that there is currently an NA-50 replica for sale on Barnstormers that states that it has been modified from the later wing to the earlier straight trailing edge type and is six inches shorter than the standard Harvard wing panel. I would imagine that the earlier straight trailing edge wing panels also have 12 ribs rather than the 13 rib standard. Does anyone have any drawings that lay out the part numbers for the ribs on the early outer wing panels?

                            Comment

                            • Duggy
                              Flight SIM Pilot
                              • Mar 2012
                              • 1142

                              #15
                              Here's some wonderful shots, taken at Randolph Field,Texas 1939 of BT-9s.










                              Comment

                              • Mustang51
                                Rank 5 Registered User
                                • Sep 2008
                                • 279

                                #16
                                Certainly looks a lot different to the Randolf AFB I have visited but the actual layout is obviously the same. Had the nickname of the "Taj Mahal" from its early days and the tile covered water tank is still a feature

                                Comment

                                • Mustang51
                                  Rank 5 Registered User
                                  • Sep 2008
                                  • 279

                                  #17
                                  Also wondering if the BT.9 had the same design outer wing panels as the Wirraway - no washout. Lead to some nasty stall characteristics and perhaps why there are fixed LE slats.

                                  Comment

                                  • Graham Boak
                                    Rank 5 Registered User
                                    • Nov 2008
                                    • 957

                                    #18
                                    Lovely photos. The BT9 wing underwent a series of modifications, initially no washout and no slat, then the slat was added, then the slat was replaced by washout. The nasty stall characteristics were noted by the A&AEE which is why slats were added to the Harvard Mk.Is after entering service. The design's problems were eventually cured by a longer fuselage and a reduction in wing sweep, creating the famous T-6.

                                    Comment

                                    • Mark_pilkington
                                      Rank 9999 Registered User
                                      • Jun 2004
                                      • 1791

                                      #19
                                      Originally posted by Pat B View Post

                                      The only reason I ask is that I am currently exploring the possibility and feasibility of retrofitting a set of Harvard Mk 2 outer wing panels to a set of Harvard Mk 1 panels. Does anyone know if this has been done before? I see that there is currently an NA-50 replica for sale on Barnstormers that states that it has been modified from the later wing to the earlier straight trailing edge type and is six inches shorter than the standard Harvard wing panel. I would imagine that the earlier straight trailing edge wing panels also have 12 ribs rather than the 13 rib standard. Does anyone have any drawings that lay out the part numbers for the ribs on the early outer wing panels?
                                      Pat,

                                      it would be a major task to modify the later T6 forward swept trailing edge wing outers to become straight trailing edge wings for a NA-50 replica or Harvard I replica, although Matt Denning in Queensland Australia has been building CAC Boomerang wing outers for years and they are effectively shortened/clipped wing versions of the straight trailing edge Wirraway / NA-16 wing.

                                      There is only 1 surviving NA-16 example - in Boliva in South America, and no other known survivors of the various NA models with the early straight trailing edge wing such as the BT-9, BC-1, NJ-1 and Harvard I etc.

                                      But there are a healthy number of CAC Wirraways surviving with the NA-16 wing and a smaller number of CAC Boomerangs with the modified version and I have no doubt Matt could punch out a set of Wirraway/Harvard mk I straight trailing edge wing outers based on his production capabilities of Boomerang wing outers.

                                      The drawings of the CAC Wirraway wings do exist

                                      regards

                                      Mark Pilkington

                                      "Never has a Country so Big!, owed so Much!, to those who Flew!"

                                      Comment

                                      • Beermat
                                        1 Registered Rank Loser
                                        • Oct 2009
                                        • 3646

                                        #20
                                        I would be extremely wary of going back to the earliest of the breed. Recreating a non-washed-out, straight-winged, short-tailed, round-ruddered NA trainer.would mean reversing all the amends made to make a frankly dangerous aeroplane acceptable. There is a story in there, and as is often the case it's not the one told by the manufacturer.
                                        www.whirlwindfighterproject.org
                                        It's all good. Probably.

                                        Comment

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