Vultee SNBV-1  Valiant

 

On 28 August 1940, the Navy continued its call for mass amounts of trainers with an order to Vultee Aircraft for 1,350 SNV-1 aircraft (the Navy's version of the Army's BT-13A).   This was followed later with a contract for 650 SNV-2s having a 24 volt electrical system.   In the Army Air Corps, the SNV would outnumber all other aircraft at the basic training level.   Unfortunately, it gained a reputation in Army circles as a killer of cadets because of its quick-action top rudder stalls.   Its use in the Navy as an intermediate stage of flight training was a step-up in style from the Stearman N2S "Kaydet" for the SNVs were equipped with radios and landing flaps.   Unlike the SNJ "Texan", the SNV had fixed landing gear.

Both Army and Navy pilots were in agreement in nicknaming the SNV as the "Vultee Vibrator" because of the way in which the canopy rattled with the engine running and from the shudder that developed in the second and third turn of a spin.

Towards the end of World War II, the need for critical materials was evident in the construction of the "Vibrator" as wood and fiber began to replace metal in the airplane's paneling.   With the end of the war in 1945, all of the SNVs were quickly phased out of service.

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