by Tommy H. Thomason

Sunday, June 9, 2013

A3D (A-3) Skywarrior Wings

I've revisited my original drawing comparing the original A3D wing and the Cambered Leading Edge (CLE) A3D wing introduced partway through production. See for applicability and some details.
(Note that there wasn't perfect consistency among the various Douglas drawings that I used to create the above illustration, so it shouldn't be used to correct trivial differences on the Trumpeter or Hasegawa kits.)

Some configuration details to watch out for:

The most inboard CLE slat did not extend as much as the outboard slats.

There was a small fairing added on the inboard side of the engine pylon when the CLE wing was introduced.

The A3D slats were aerodynamically actuated so they opened automatically as the airplane was slowed to approach speed (strictly speaking, as angle of attack increased). On the original wing, the most outboard slat closed due to gravity when the wings were folded; according to the flight manual "the outer wing inboard slats on each wing are mechanically extended when the wings are folded" in order to avoid damage to the wing and that slat.

On the CLE wing, for some reason, both slats on the folding wing panel were allowed to close when the wings were folded.

 Note that the ailerons drooped downward on both the original and CLE wings.


  1. Great work. You have collected very unique info about A3D (A-3) Skywarrior Wings and thanks for sharing it. Keep it up.

  2. Is that one of the camouflaged KA-3Bs ?
    In B&W it may look like a Sea Blue Whale at first sight, but the undersides and lower engine nacelles are white.

  3. That is one of the camouflaged KA-3Bs used during the Vietnam War. It was some shade (or shades) of green on the top and sides.