Douglas A-20 Havoc 
(Douglas Boston)
Havoc 5D-G in US markings


The A-20 Havoc was designed to meet an Army Air Corps attack specification in 1938 but was in use by the French and British before delivery to US squadrons. Begun as a company- funded venture, the Havoc eventually became the most-produced Army Air Forces attack aircraft.

The first A-20 prototype Model 7B flew in December 1938. The aircraft was initially designated the DB-7, but the name was changed to A-20 to comply with USAF naming conventions. The first production A-20 flew on 17 August, 1939. It was one of the first US combat aircraft to have a nosewheel.

The export version of the A-20C was the first aircraft to be ordered under a lend-lease contract, and was flown by Australia, Brazil, Great Britain, Holland, South Africa, Soviet Union and the USA. The Soviets actually received more A-20s than the US forces.

        A-20A : attack version for USAF
        A-20C : licensed version built by Boeing, nicknamed "Boston" by RAF
        A-20G : licensed version for USSR, 7,478 built
        F-3 : photoreconnaisance version
        P-70 : night fighter

The Fleet Air Arm received a total of 9 Havocs transferred from the RAF (Havoc I, Havoc I/LAM, Havoc I/Pandora, Havoc I/Intruder, Havoc I/LAM Intruder). The first was delivered in October 1941 (BB906), subsequently transferred in October 1942 to 778 squadron at Arbroath. However, most were delivered to 771 squadron from December 1942 till 1943. The last remaining in the squadron till December of that year at Twatt.

Fleet Air Arm history
    Total FAA 1939-1945:         9
    First delivered to RN:          1941
    First squadron 1939-1945:    778 sqdn in 1942
    Operational squadron:          None
    Last served with RN            1943
Aircraft Type:
Douglas A-20 Havoc
Primary Role:
Attack, bomber 
First Flight: 
December, 1938
Date operating with FAA squadrons:
Douglas Aircraft Company
Two 1,582 hp Wright R-2600-23 14-cylinder radials engines
 Wing Span: Length: Height: Wing Area: 
Wingspan 62.2 ft (18.96 m) 
Length 48 ft (14.63 m) 
Height 17.6 ft (5.36 m) 
Wingarea 465 sq ft (43.20 sq m)
Empty Weight: Max.Weight:
Weight empty 15,983 lb 
max.27,200 lb (2,338 kg)



max. 341 mph (548 km/h) 
cruising 230 mph  (370 km/h)
Initial climb  rate  1,201-2,000 ft/min (366-610 m/min)
Ceiling 25,590 ft  (7,800 m) 
Range1,087 miles (1,750 km)
Five 7.62mm machine gun, Four 20mm cannon, 
2,000 lb bombs internally, 2,000 lb externally
Battle honours:
None with FAA
Additional references and notes:

Battle Honours and Operational History

The A-20 Havoc saw no operational action withthe Fleet Air Arm in WWII. However, it served with distinction with other services in every theater of the war. On 4 July, 1942, the first Army Air Forces bomber mission over Western Europe was flown by US crews of the 15th Bomb Squadron operating RAF Havocs against airfields in the Netherlands. Some of the Dutch aircraft were captured by the Japanese and appropriated into service.

Original wartime colour photograph of a Havoc operational flight formation

Surviving aircraft and relics

There are at least five Havocs preserved today, including  the world's only flying Havoc. The aircraft are preserved at the Douglas Boston-Havoc UK Preservation Trust (UK), the Lone Star Flight Museum, Scholes Field, Galveston, Texas, the USAF Museum and the RAAF Museum (Australia). Another is currently under restoration at the Air Restoration Inc, Museum and Aircraft Restoration Facility
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The Lone Star Flight Museum Havoc is the last airworthy A-20 in the world.

Airworthy A-20G Havoc, at the Lone Star Flying Museum, Scholes Field, Galveston, Texas. The only airworthy Havoc in the World.

Air Restoration Inc, Museum and Aircraft Restoration Facility
A20 undergoing restoration, photograph of October, 1998

Air Restoration Inc, Museum and Aircraft Restoration Facility: Preserved  A-20 Havoc MILITARY SERIAL NUMBER: 44-0020 OWNER: David Tallichet "MARC" . STATUS: On Consignment From "MARC" To Air Heritage For Restoration/Display
The Douglas A-20H-1-DO being restored back to flight by Air Heritage was the 20th A-20H of the 412 H models built during WW 2, a total of 11,000 were built including all models. This A-20H Serial Number 44-0020 was sold to the Nicaraguan Air Force some time after the war ended. After a hard landing during its service with the Nicaraguans structural damage was caused in the wings above the engine nacelles. The aircraft was then towed to a children play ground in Managua, where David Tallichet found and purchased it in 1980. David then had it towed to the docks loaded it onto a barge and moved it to the airport at Chino CA. In 1993 David arranged with Air Heritage an agreement to move the A-20 to their Beaver Falls facility for restoration, which required disassembly for trucking. At this time the damage in the wings had been repaired, the inside of the fuselage has been striped of all components, paint and has been repainted. The amount of time that the aircraft sat in the park caused major corrosion to almost all of the airplanes systems components, requiring replacement of all systems. After trying to find replacement wing panels, with no luck it was decided to remove the spars from the wing so that they maybe used as patterns for replacements. The inner wing panels have been refitted to the fuselage and the landing gear cleaned, repainted and reinstalled. This restoration will take a number of years more to complete. Air Restoration Inc, Museum and Aircraft Restoration Facility.

Associations and reunions
Sturtivant, R. & Burrow, M (1995)   'Fleet Air Arm Aircraft 1939 to 1945'  Published by Air Britain (Historians) Ltd, 1995 ISBN: 0 85130 232 7 
Canadian aces website General information Profiles.
Created 3-4-1999, Modified 3-4-2000


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