1. Please forgive me if this question isn't in the right place.

    I'm writing a book about the PT-19, and I keep running across the statement that the Army Air Corps decided to move to it from the Boeing-Stearman because the PT-19 offered more advanced training than previous trainers -- a necessity in order to prepare them to fly against "the increasingly high-performance nature of the world's combat aircraft."

    What would these high-performance aircraft have been? I'd like to explain specifically what aircraft led them to decide they needed to advance their training to stay competitive with Axis training and combat.

    Thanks so much for the help.

    Carmen Sisson
     
  2. HoHun

    HoHun Active Member

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    Hi Carmen,

    >I'm writing a book about the PT-19, and I keep running across the statement that the Army Air Corps decided to move to it from the Boeing-Stearman because the PT-19 offered more advanced training than previous trainers -- a necessity in order to prepare them to fly against "the increasingly high-performance nature of the world's combat aircraft."

    >What would these high-performance aircraft have been? I'd like to explain specifically what aircraft led them to decide they needed to advance their training to stay competitive with Axis training and combat.

    Hm, it looks to me as if the "against" in your first paragraph (which appears not to be part of the original quote) might not be just what the original source meant to convey.

    Normally, trainer aircraft were designed to be challenging to fly without being truly dangerous. It was OK for a WW2-era trainer to have some quirks that were typical for the high-performance aircraft of the era since the pilots were expected to be able to handle those quirks in high-performance aircraft, too. A flawlessly behaving trainer would not prepare the student pilots for the real thing, and you might have encountered the popular quote "If you can fly an AT-6, you can fly everything".

    However, I admit that the above considerations mainly concern advanced trainers like the AT-6, and the PT-19 carried a primary trainer designation. It probably was not necessary for the type to emulate the quirks of the high-performance aircraft as it served as a platform for training and evaluating the basic flying talents of the students.

    As biplanes like the PT-17 had their own set of ideosyncacies you wouldn't find on a high-performance monoplane, and the PT-19 as a low-wing monoplane design might have been slightly closer in handling to the types the students were trained to fly, but from what I've read, in the early stages of the flight training this probably didn't matter much.

    PR statements aside, I presume that the PT-19 simply promised better cost efficiency in training than earlier types. Not that I'm familiar with the exact chronology of USAAC training aircraft procurement ...

    Regards,

    Henning (HoHun)
     
  3. gumbyk

    gumbyk Well-Known Member

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    Hi Carmen,
    While I cannot comment on the PT-17/PT-19, I can tell you that the PT-22 does have some quirks. From talking to AT-6 pilots, and reading reports, it would appear that a lot of these handling idiosyncrasies are also present in the AT-6, so it makes sense to me to accept these in the primary trainer.
    This report on the handling of the PT-22 may at least give you some idea on why the AAC chose this route.
    pilot report on Ryan PT-22
    A bi-plane, with its low wing loading tends to be quite a but different to fly (not that I have much time in them), and I would think that the transition from a PT-19 or PT-22 to an AT-6 would have been a smaller step that from a PT-17. While it isn't necessary for the primary trainers to emulate the advanced trainers in terms of handling, if they do hold some of the same quirks and idiosynchrasies, I would term that as a bonus, as it would reduce the transition time for a new pilot to the advanced trainer.
     
  4. Thanks so much, guys. I check in and out of here sporadically, so apologies for the delay in response. I understand what you're saying about the "against." i added that word, and you are probably right -- I was misunderstanding. The quotes are likely simply saying that the PT-19 and AT-6 simply prepared them for the aircraft they would eventually fly. Thanks for clearing that up. I definitely don't want to get it wrong.

    I still need to find elevations and profiles. I downloaded the parts manual here, and I've ordered a flight manual. I'm hoping those will have what I need. Any resources I may have overlooked would be greatly appreciated.
     
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