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A-4 Skyhawk Pilot's Flight Operating Instructions
Air Force, United States

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A-4 Skyhawk Pilot\'s Flight Operating Instructions



Designed by Douglas Aircraft Co.'s brilliant
engineer Ed Heinemann, the turbojet
powered, delta-wing A-4 Skyhawk played a
key role in conflicts from Vietnam to the
Falklands and Yom Kippur Wars. The
Skyhawk was intended to replace the
venerable Skyraider as a carrier-based,
ground attack aircraft, yet Heinemann's
design looked nothing like its predecessor.
Its small, lightweight airframe was so
compact that its wings did not even have to
be folded for carrier stowage, and it
surpassed the Navy's design specification
for weight by nearly 100%. No wonder the
nimble jet was dubbed "Heinemann's Hot

The A-4 entered service in 1956, and first
saw combat during the early days of the
Vietnam War where it flew as a light
attack aircraft. Its service in S.E. Asia
was prolific, as it flew literally thousands
of strike and escort missions and even
scored an air-to-air victory over a North
Vietnamese MiG. A Marine A-4 is believed
to be the last American aircraft to drop
bombs on Vietnam. During the conflict 362
Skyhawks were lost.

The Navy retired the Skyhawk in 1975,
although it continued flying as a trainer
and adversary aircraft as late as 2003.

Nearly 3,000 Skyhawks were built before
production ceased in 1979, including a two-
seat trainer model TA-4. The Skyhawk was
widely exported and saw combat with the
air forces of Kuwait, Israel and Argentina.

This pilot's manual was originally
classified "restricted" but has now been
declassified and is here reprinted in
book form

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