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Texan SNJ research oddity

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I was looking for markings that might be compatible with the Kitty Hawk Texan the aircraft I found is an SNJ4 so it should not be hard to model from the kit but I found this tidbit...

 

"In 1943, a batch extending from BuAer 51350 to 51676 rolled off the assembly line at the North American Aviation factory near Dallas, Texas. It was unusual in having all-wood stabilizers and rear fuselages. In 1942, fears of wartime shortages of strategic metals such as aluminum dictated this construction. Only certain AT-6Cs and SNJ-4 variants shared this feature."

 

Now I know this aircraft has a massive degree of variation but this was a surprise. I'm contacting the owners to see if this still airworthy aircraft could still possible have a wooden fuse and stab. Anybody know more about this oddity??? Thinking about I would model it??? Thanks- J

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I read about that as well.

It was short lived as you noted, once we determined that the aluminum shortage wasn't as predicted construction went back to all alloy.

 

As far as I know there are no known woodies left out there, I could be wrong very easily.

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There are some that, by bureau number, I can say they still exist.  That does not mean that they still have the wood structures....it's possible that along the way, they were rebuilt to have the standard aluminum alloy structures.  One example is  N694US, an SNJ-4 that has a current registration and is valid until 2020.  It's Bu. No. is 51360.

 

There are others, and this is a list you can check to see which ones might still be flying, or maybe on static display.

 

http://www.warbirdregistry.org/texanregistry/texanregistry.html#SNJ-4

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I was unaware the had done the wood construction on T-6/SNJs. I did know Vultee built BT-15s with a phenolic resin type monocoque structure aft of the cockpit, including the tail surfaces. I still have a overhauled yellow tagged elevator trim tab from one.

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