Operational history Convair started construction of a prototype as a private venture before a winner of the LARA competition was announced. In August 1964, the US Navy announced North American Aviation's design, the NA-300 (later to become the OV-10 Bronco) as the winner of the LARA competition. The U.S. Marine Corps and U.S. Air Force favored the Charger, however, and protested against the U.S. Navy's decision, and Convair continued construction of their prototype, which made its maiden flight on 25 November 1964.[2] After initial flight tests, the Charger was modified with an increased wingspan and modified tail to improve low-speed control. The Charger demonstrated excellent STOL capability, taking off over a 50 ft (15 m) obstacle in 485 ft (148 m) with a normal payload.[2] This was better both than the LARA specifications requirement of 800 ft (244 m),[4] and the Bronco.[9] The Charger was awarded a 100-hour joint service flight test contract where the prototype would be flown by representatives of the U.S. Navy, Marine Corps, Army and Air Force. If orders followed, it was planned to build the production aircraft with a deeper and longer fuselage allowing full dual controls to be fitted.[2] The prototype crashed on its 196th test flight on 19 October 1965, owing to pilot error by its U.S. Navy test pilot, however, and further development was abandoned.[2][6] [edit]Specifications (Long-span wings) Data from General Dynamics Aircraft and their Predecessors [2] General characteristics Crew: 2 Capacity: 6 paratroops in utility/cargo bay[8] Length: 34 ft 10 in (10.62 m) Wingspan: 30 ft 1.25 in (9.1758 m) Height: 13 ft 7 in (4.14 m) Wing area: 216 sq ft (20.1 m2) Empty weight: 4,457 lb (2,022 kg) Gross weight: 10,460 lb (4,745 kg) Fuel capacity: 258 US Gallon (977 L) internal[8] Powerplant: 2 × Pratt & Whitney Canada T74-CP-8/10 turboprop, 650 hp (480 kW) each Propellers: 3-bladed Hamilton Standard, 8 ft 6 in (2.59 m) diameter Performance Maximum speed: 319 mph (513 km/h; 277 kn) at sea level Ferry range: 3,000 mi (2,607 nmi; 4,828 km) Service ceiling: 21,300 ft (6,492 m) Take-off to 50 ft (15 m): Less than 500 ft (152 m)[8] Landing from 50 ft (15 m): Less than 500 ft (152 m)[8] Armament Guns: 4 × 7.62mm machine guns Hardpoints: 5 with a capacity of 2,000 lb (910 kg) total,

johnbr, Jan 11, 2013
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