The OV-10 Bronco: Designed for Counterinsurgency and the Vietnam War (Electronic Edition)

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This is an electronic version of the paper that was awarded the Marine Corps Heritage Foundation’s 2017 General Roy S. Geiger Award for best Marine Corps aviation article for 2016. This edition is a special electronic version of the Marine Corps Heritage Foundation version.

This is the only all services, definitive story of the North American Rockwell OV-10 Bronco from inception to combat in the Vietnam War and beyond. This all services study of the Bronco has been fully revised and updated since its original publication for the National Dense University’s, Violent Skies: The Air War Over Vietnam symposium in 2015. The original publication was a hard copy 70-page booklet that sold for $20.00 and is now out of print. This PDF file is downloadable upon purchase for private viewing. Copyright 2015 and 2017, OV-10 Bronc Association, Inc.

This revision is fully updated with new post-Vietnam material and pictures.

Table of Contents
INTRODUCTION …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 4
1. THE CONCEPT …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 5
2. THE DESIGN COMPETITION ……………………………………………………………………………………………… 7
3. YOV-10A PROTOTYPE ………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 9
3.1 NAA OV-10 DESIGN …………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 9
3.2 THE MOCKUP………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 11
3.3 YOV-10A FLIGHT TEST ……………………………………………………………………………………………………. 13
4. THE OV-10A BRONCO ………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 16
5. FIELDING THE OV-10 IN VIETNAM ……………………………………………………………………………………… 23
5.1 MARINE CORPS SERVICE ……………………………………………………………………………………………….. 23
5.2 AIR FORCE SERVICE ………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 36
5.3 NAVY SERVICE ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 41
6. OV-10 CHANGES DURING 1968-1975 …………………………………………………………………………………. 46
6.1 ARMAMENT CHANGES ……………………………………………………………………………………………………. 46
6.2 PAVE NAIL ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 48
6.3 NIGHT OBSERVATION GUNSHIP SYSTEM (NOGS) …………………………………………………………….. 51
7. CONCLUSIONS ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 55
7.1 THE OV-10 IN THE VIETNAM WAR …………………………………………………………………………………….. 55
7.2 THE OV-10 POST-VIETNAM ………………………………………………………………………………………………. 55
7.3 IN SUMMARY ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 57
APPENDIX A: OV-10 AIR CREW LOSSES, 1968-1975 ………………………………………………………………… A1
APPENDIX B: CONTRIBUTORS ……………………………………………………………………………………………….. B1
APPENDIX C: ABBREVIATIONS, ACRONYMS, AND TERMS ………………………………………………………. C1
APPENDIX D: BIBLIOGRAPHY…………………………………………………………………………………………………… D1
APPENDIX E: OBA COLLECTION VIETNAM ERA OV-10 PATCHES & EMBLEMS ………………………….. E1

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