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T-28 Trojan
A U.S. Navy T-28B in 1973
Role Trainer aircraft
Manufacturer North American Aviation
First flight 24 September 1949
Retired 1994 Philippine Air Force [1]
Primary users United States Air Force
United States Navy
South Vietnamese Air Force
French Air Force
Produced 1950-1957
Number built 1,948
Developed from North American XSN2J
Developed into AIDC T-CH-1

The North American Aviation T-28 Trojan is a piston-engined military trainer aircraft used by the United States Air Force and United States Navy beginning in the 1950s. Besides its use as a trainer, the T-28 was successfully employed as a Counter-insurgency (COIN) aircraft, primarily during the Vietnam War.

Design and development

On September 24, 1949, the XT-28 (company designation NA-159) was flown for the first time, designed to replace the T-6 Texan. Found satisfactory, a contract was issued and between 1950 and 1957, a total of 1,948 were built.

Following the T-28's withdrawal from U.S. military service, a number were remanufactured by Hamilton Aircraft into two versions called the Nomair. The first refurbished machines, designated T-28R-1 were similar to the standard T-28s they were adapted from, and were supplied to the Brazilian Navy. Later, a more ambitious conversion was undertaken as the T-28R-2, which transformed the two-seat tandem aircraft into a five-seat cabin monoplane for general aviation use. Other civil conversions of ex-military T-28As were undertaken by PacAero as the Nomad Mark I and Nomad Mark II[2]

Operational history

A West Virginia Air National Guard T-28A in 1957.

After becoming adopted as a primary trainer by the USAF, the United States Navy and Marine Corps adopted it as well. Although the Air Force phased out the aircraft out of primary pilot training by the early 1960s, continuing use only for limited training of special operations aircrews and for primary training of select foreign military personnel, the aircraft continued to be used as a primary trainer by the Navy (and by default, the Marine Corps and Coast Guard) well into the early 1980s.

The largest single concentration of this aircraft was employed by the U.S. Navy at NAS Whiting Field in Milton, Florida, in the training of student naval aviators. The T-28's service career in the U.S. military ended with the completion of the phase in of the T-34C turboprop trainer. The last U.S. Navy training squadron to fly the T-28 was VT-27, based at NAS Corpus Christi, Texas, flying the last T-28 training flight in early 1984. The last T-28 in the Training Command, BuNo 137796, departed for Naval District Washington on 14 March 1984 to be displayed permanently at Naval Support Facility Anacostia, D.C.[3] Many T-28s were subsequently sold to private civil operators, and due to their reasonable operating costs are often found flying as warbirds today.

In September 2011 a T-28 Trojan stunt team lost one of its planes and pilots during an air show in Martinsburg, West Virginia. No other casualties were reported.[4]

Vietnam War

VNAF T-28Ds over Vietnam.

In 1963, a Laotian Air Force T-28 piloted by Lieutenant Chert Saibory, a Thai national, defected to North Vietnam. Saibory was immediately imprisoned and his aircraft was impounded. Within six months the T-28 was refurbished and commissioned into the North Vietnamese Air Force as its first fighter aircraft.[5]

T-28s were supplied to the South Vietnamese Air Force in support of ARVN ground operations, seeing extensive service during the Vietnam War in VNAF hands, as well as the Secret War in Laos. A T-28 Trojan was the first US fixed wing attack aircraft (non-transport type) lost in South Vietnam, during the Vietnam War. Capt. Robert L. Simpson, USAF, Detachment 2A, lst Air Commando Group, and Lt. Hoa, SVNAF, were shot down by ground fire on August 28, 1962 while flying Close Air Support (CAS). Neither crewman survived. The USAF lost 23 T-28s to all causes during the war, with the last two losses occurring in 1968.[6]

Other uses

T-28s were also used by the CIA in the former Belgian Congo during the 1960s.[7] France used locally re-manufactured Trojans for close support missions in Algeria.[8] The Philippines utilized T-28s (colloquially known as "Tora-toras") during the 1989 Philippine coup attempt, the aircraft were often deployed as dive bombers by rebel forces.

AeroVironment has modified and armored a T-28A to fly weather research for South Dakota School of Mines & Technology, funded by the National Science Foundation.[9][10]


An early-production U.S. Navy T-28B in 1954.

A tail hook-equipped T-28C after trapping aboard USS Tarawa (CVA-40), in 1955.

A turboprop-powered YAT-28E in 1964.

Prototype, 2 built.
U.S. Air Force version with an 800 hp (597 kW) Wright R-1300-7 radial engine, 1,194 built.
U.S. Navy version with 1,425 hp (1,063 kW) Wright R-1820-9 radial engine, 3-blade propeller, belly mounted speed brake, 489 built.
US Navy version, a T-28B with shortened propeller blade and tailhook for carrier landing training, 266 built.
T-28D Nomad
T-28As converted for the counter insurgency (COIN) role. Fitted with six underwing hardpoints. Total 393 converted - 321 by Pacific Airmotive licensed by NAA, plus 72 by Fairchild Hiller.
T-28 Nomad Mark I - Wright R-1820-56S engines 1300 hp.[2][11]
T-28 Nomad Mark II - Wright R-1820-76A 1425 hp
T-28 Fennec
T-28As converted for the counter insurgency (COIN) role. Fitted with six underwing hardpoints.Wright R-1820-76A 1425 hp.
148 modified by Sud-Aviation in France
T-28Ds used for attack training by the USAF.
Counter insurgency development of T-28D powered by 2,445 hp (1,823 kW) Lycoming YT-55L-9 turboprop, and armed with two .50 in machine guns and up to 6,000 lb (2,730 kg) of weapons on twelve underwing pylons. Three prototypes converted by North American from T-28As, with first flying on 15 February 1963, but project was canceled in 1965.[12]
T-28R-1 Nomair
Ex-USAF T-28s refurbished for Brazilian Navy
T-28R-2 Nomair
Ex-USAF T-28s converted into two or five-place general aviation aircraft by Hamilton Aircraft Company with R-1820 engines.[13]
Photo reconnaissance conversion for COIN use with Royal Lao Air Force. Number of conversions unknown.[14]


T-28Ds used in Operation Barrel Roll in Laos.

A former French T-28 Fennec.

T-28A Trojan, RoKAF.

Derelict Royal Saudi Air Force T-28A Trojan at King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, one of four acquired in the 1950s

A U.S. North American T-28D Trojan wearing South Vietnamese markings, flying over Vietnam in the early 1960s.

A Royal Thai Air Force North American T-28D Trojan is waiting for take-off.

Uruguay Naval Aviation North American T-28S Fennec.

 Republic of the Congo
 Dominican Republic
 South Korea
 Saudi Arabia
 South Vietnam
United States


A T-28A of the USAF Museum.

T-28B BuNo 138266 in 2008.

Many T-28s are on display throughout the world. In addition, a considerable number of flyable examples exist in private ownership, as the aircraft is a popular sport plane and warbird.


On display
  • 49-1583 - Australian Aviation Museum, Bankstown Airport, New South Wales, Australia.[36]


On display
  • 140533 - Villamor AB in Manila, The Philippines.[37]


On display
  • 51-3664 - Chung Cheng Aviation Museum, Taipai Airport, Taiwan.[38]


On display

United Kingdom

On display

United States

On display

Specifications (T-28D)

North American T-28C Trojan.

General characteristics

  • Crew: Two
  • Length: 33 ft 0 in (10.06 m)
  • Wingspan: 40 ft 1 in (12.22 m)
  • Height: 12 ft 8 in (3.86 m)
  • Wing area: 268 ft² (24.9 m²)
  • Empty weight: 6,424 lb (2,914 kg)
  • Max. takeoff weight: 8,500 lb (10,500 with combat stores) (3,856 kg)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Wright R-1820-86 Cyclone radial engine, 1,425 hp (1,063 kW)


  • Maximum speed: 343 mph (552 km/h)
  • Service ceiling: 39,000 ft (10,820 m)
  • Rate of climb: 4,000 fpm (20.3 m/s)


  • 2 or 6 × wing-mounted pylons capable of carrying bombs, napalm, rockets. machine gun pods containing .30 in (7.62 mm) (training), .50 in (D-model) or twin pods with .50 in (12.7 mm) and 20 mm (.79 in) cannon (Fennec)
  • See also



    1. "Historical Listings: Philippines, (PHL)."] World Air Forces. Retrieved: 19 May 2011.
    2. 2.0 2.1 The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Aircraft 1985, p. 2678.
    3. "T-28." Retrieved: 9 July 2010.
    4. [1]
    5. Toperczer 2001, pp. 8–9.
    6. Hobson, Chris. Vietnam Air Losses, USAF/Navy/Marine, Fixed Wing Aircraft Losses in Southeast 1961-1973. North Branch, Minnesota: Specialty Press, 2001. ISBN 1-85780-115-6.
    7. "Holm, Richard L. "A Plane Crash, Rescue, and Recovery - A Close Call in Africa". Center for the Study of Intelligence, Historical Perspectives, Washington, D.C., Winter 1999-2000.
    8. "The true story of the T-28 Fennec." Retrieved: 9 July 2010.
    9. Godfrey, Joe. "Charlie Summers" AVweb, 16 April 2003. Retrieved: 22 July 2012.
    10. "T-28 Instrumented Research Aircraft" South Dakota School of Mines & Technology. Retrieved: 22 July 2012.
    11. Sweeney, Richard L. "New Role for Nomad."Flying Magazine, December 1961.
    12. Tate Air Enthusiast May/June 1999, pp. 58–59.
    13. Flying Magazine, April 1962, p. 3.
    14.; Retrieved 17 April 2012.
    15. "Air Force Aircraft Fleet." Aeromilitaria, April 2009. Retrieved: 25 July 2009.
    16. 16.00 16.01 16.02 16.03 16.04 16.05 16.06 16.07 16.08 16.09 16.10 16.11 16.12 16.13 16.14 16.15 16.16 16.17 16.18 16.19 Taylor and Munson 1973, p. 179.
    17. 17.00 17.01 17.02 17.03 17.04 17.05 17.06 17.07 17.08 17.09 17.10 Krivinyi 1977, p. 178.
    18. 18.00 18.01 18.02 18.03 18.04 18.05 18.06 18.07 18.08 18.09 18.10 18.11 18.12 18.13 18.14 18.15 18.16 Fitzsimons 1988, p. 137.
    19. Andrade 1982, p. 28.
    20. Wieland, William A. "Memorandum From the Director of the Office of Middle American Affairs.", August 1958. Retrieved: 21 February 2010.
    21. Valero, Jose Ramon. "Picture of the North American T-28 Trojan aircraft.", October 2003. Retrieved: 21 February 2010.
    22. Andrade 1982, p. 56.
    23. Andrade 1982, p. 58.
    24. Andrade 1982, p. 62.
    25. 25.0 25.1 Andrade 1982, p. 97.
    26. Green 1956, p. 238.
    27. Andrade 1982, p. 146.
    28. Andrade 1982, p. 156.
    29. Andrade 1982, p. 181.
    30. Andrade 1982, p. 143.
    31. Andrade 1982, p. 223.
    32. "Talking Paper for Chief of Staff, U.S. Army: Guidance for T-28 Aircraft Operations." U.S. Army, 9 March 1964.
    33. Andrade 1982, p. 336.
    34. (Vietnamese) Secrets of US Air Operations in North Vietnam (Bí mật các chiến dịch không kích của Mỹ vào Bắc Việt Nam), People's Police Publisher, p. 513.
    35. Andrade 1982, p. 343.
    36. "T-28 Trojan/49-1583" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    37. "T-28 Trojan/140533" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    38. "T-28 Trojan/51-3664" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    39. "T-28 Trojan/49-1538" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    40. "T-28 Trojan/49-1601" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    41. "T-28 Trojan/49-1687" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    42. "T-28 Trojan/51-3480" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    43. "T-28 Trojan/51-3578" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    44. "T-28 Trojan/51-3740" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    45. "T-28 Trojan/153652" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    46. "T-28 Trojan/137661" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    47. "T-28 Trojan/138157" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    48. "T-28 Trojan/138284" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    49. "T-28 Trojan/138302" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    50. "T-28 Trojan/146289" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    51. "T-28 Trojan/49-1494" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    52. "T-28 Trojan/49-1663" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    53. "T-28 Trojan/49-1679" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    54. "T-28 Trojan/49-1682" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    55. "T-28 Trojan/49-1689" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    56. "T-28 Trojan/49-1695" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    57. "T-28 Trojan/50-0300" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    58. "T-28 Trojan/51-3612" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    59. "T-28 Trojan/51-7500" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    60. "T-28 Trojan/137702" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    61. "T-28 Trojan/137796" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    62. "T-28 Trojan/138144" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    63. "T-28 Trojan/138247" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    65. "T-28 Trojan/138339." Retrieved: 22 March 2013.
    66. "T-28 Trojan/138353" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    67. "T-28 Trojan/140048" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    68. "T-28 Trojan/140454" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    69. "T-28 Trojan/140481" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    70. "T-28 Trojan/140557" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.
    71. "T-28 Trojan/140659" Warbird Registry. Retrieved: 11 June 2012.


    • Andrade, John. Militair 1982. London: Aviation Press Limited, 1982. ISBN 0-907898-01-7.
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    • Green, William. Observers Aircraft, 1956. London: Frederick Warne Publishing, 1956.
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    • Krivinyi, Nikolaus. World Military Aviation. New York: Arco Publishing Company, 1977. ISBN 0-668-04348-2,
    • Tate, Jess. "Ultimate Trojan: North American's YAT-28E Project". Air Enthusiast, No. 99, May/June 1999. pp. 58–59. ISSN 0143-5450.
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    • Toperczer, Istvan. MiG-17 and MiG-19 Units of the Vietnam War. London: Osprey Publishing Limited, 2001. ISBN 1-84176-162-1.
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