Fletcher FBT-2

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FBT-2
Role Trainer
Manufacturer Fletcher
Designer Wendell Fletcher
First flight 1941
Primary user USAAF
Number built 11

The Fletcher FBT-2 was a military trainer aircraft built in the United States in the early 1940s. Although it was never used in its intended role, it played a small part in the development of guided bombs. The FBT-2 was a low-wing cantilever monoplane with fixed tailwheel undercarriage which seated the pilot and instructor in tandem in an enclosed cockpit. Construction throughout was of plywood, and the wings were interchangeable, as were the tail panels. A single prototype was evaluated for military use, but generated no interest. However, the USAAF ordered the type as a radio-controlled target drone under the designation XPQ-11. The prototype FBT-2 was modified to use as a drone controller as the YCQ-1A. Two batches of 50 drones were ordered, but before any were delivered, the type was cancelled in favour of the PQ-8 Cadet. The Army then ordered the PQ-11s under construction to be completed without engines so that bombs could be fitted in their noses to use for glide bomb experiments as the BG-1. No further examples were ordered past this initial batch of ten.

Variants[edit]

  • FBT-2 - basic trainer with Wright R-760 engine and tailwheel undercarriage (1 built)
    • CQ-1 - drone controller with tricycle undercarriage (1 converted from FBT-2)
  • PQ-11 - aerial target with tricycle undercarriage and Pratt & Whitney R-985 engine (10 under construction, none completed)
    • BG-1 - glide bomb with 2,000 lb (900 kg) warhead (10 built from unfinished PQ-11s)

Operators[edit]

 United States

Specifications (FBT-2)[edit]

General characteristics

  • Crew: Two, pilot and instructor
  • Length: 23 ft 3 in (7.09 m)
  • Wingspan: 30 ft 0 in (9.14 m)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Wright R-760-E2, 285 hp (212 kW)

Performance

  • Maximum speed: 175 mph (280 km/h)
  • Range: 540 miles (870 km)
  • Service ceiling: 19,000 ft (5,800 m)

References[edit]

  • Taylor, Michael J. H. (1989). Jane's Encyclopedia of Aviation. London: Studio Editions. p. 392. 
  • aerofiles.com