Military Wiki
Role Observation
Manufacturer Douglas Aircraft Company
Introduction 1930
Primary user United States Army Air Corps
Number built 24[1]
Variants Douglas O-31

The Douglas O-43 was a monoplane observation aircraft used by the United States Army Air Corps.


Five Y1O-31A service-test aircraft were ordered in 1931, and delivered to the USAAC in early 1933 designated Y1O-43. They differed from the final configuration of the O-31A, with a wire-braced parasol wing, and a new fin and rudder. An order for 23 O-43A aircraft was completed during 1934, with a deepened fuselage, which eliminated the need for the ventral bulge under the observer's position. Powered by a single 675 hp Curtiss V-1570-59 inline engine, it also had taller vertical surfaces with an inset rudder similar to the O-31A. The canopy was enlarged, and fully enclosed both cockpits. The O-43 and O-43A served with the USSAC observation squadrons for several years before being assigned to National Guard units,[2] such as the 111th Observation Squadron Brownwood Airfield Texas, 15th Observation Squadron Fort Sill Oklahoma, and 3rd Observation Squadron Langley Field Virginia.

The 24th airframe of the O-43A contract was completed as the XO-46 prototype (see Douglas O-46).

Specifications (O-43)

Data from "United States Military Aircraft Since 1909" by F. G. Swanborough & Peter M. Bowers (Putnam New York, ISBN 0-85177-816-X) 1964, 596 pp.

General characteristics

  • Crew: 2
  • Length: 33 ft 11 in (10.34 m)
  • Wingspan: 45 ft 8 in (13.92 m)
  • Height: 12 ft 3 in (3.74 m)
  • Wing area: 340 ft² (31.6 m²)
  • Airfoil: fabric covered parasol
  • Empty weight: 4,135 lb (1,875.6 kg)
  • Loaded weight: 5,300 lb (2404 kg)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Curtiss V-1570-59 water-cooled V12 inline engine, 675 hp (540 kW)


  • Maximum speed: 190 mph (306 km/h)
  • Cruise speed: 163 mph (262 km/h)
  • Service ceiling: 22,400 ft (6827.52 m)
  • Rate of climb: 1,515 ft/min (462 m/min)


  • 1 fixed and 1 flexible .30 cal (7.62 mm) Browning machine gun
  • See also


    1. "U.S. Army Aircraft 1908-1946" by James C. Fahey, 1946, 64pp.
    2. "The Complete Encyclopedia of World Aircraft" cover Editors: Paul Eden & Soph Moeng, (Amber Books Ltd. Bradley's Close, 74-77 White Lion Street, London, NI 9PF, 2002, ISBN 0-7607-3432-1), 1152 pp.

    External links

    This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia (view authors).