single-aircrafts.php Douglas SBD-5 Dauntless - The American Heritage Museum header.php
content-aircrafts.php

Douglas SBD-5 Dauntless

Most effective dive-bomber of WWII

Slide
Additional Images
Aircraft Specs
  • Manufacturer Douglas Aircraft Company
  • Crew 2
  • Length 33 feet, 1.25 in.
  • Wingspan 41 feet, 6.375 in.
  • Height 13 feet, 7 inches
  • Empty weight 6,404 lbs.
  • Power Wright 1820-60, 1,200 hp.
  • Max speed 255 mph
  • Cruise speed 185 mph
  • Range 1,115 miles
  • Service ceiling 25,530 feet
  • Armament 2x .50 cal Browning mg, 2x .30 cal mg in rear, up to 2,250 lbs. in bombs.
Media

The Douglas SBD Dauntless was a World War II-era American naval dive bomber. It was developed by the Douglas Aircraft Company and entered service with the United States Navy in 1940. The SBD was a sturdy and reliable aircraft, and it played a key role in several major naval battles of the war, including the Battle of Midway.

The SBD was designed to be a versatile aircraft that could operate from both aircraft carriers and land bases. It was equipped with a powerful engine and had a range of over 1,000 miles. The SBD was also armed with a variety of weapons, including machine guns and bombs, which made it a formidable opponent in air-to-air and air-to-ground combat.

The SBD saw action in many different theaters of the war, including the Pacific, Europe, and North Africa. It was used by the United States Navy, the United States Marine Corps, and the British Royal Navy, among others. The SBD was eventually replaced by newer aircraft in the post-war era, but it remains an important part of aviation history. Though slower than other attack aircraft used later in the war, crews popularized the name “Slow But Deadly” as an alternate meaning of the SBD acronym. The Dauntless is most famous as the aircraft that destroyed four Japanese aircraft carriers at the Battle of Midway on June 4, 1942. Here is a partial list of some of the most important ships sunk by SBD dive-bombers during WWII:

  1. Hiryu: This carrier was sunk during the Battle of Midway in June 1942, when it was attacked by SBD Dauntless dive-bombers from the USS Enterprise.
  2. Akagi: This carrier was also sunk during the Battle of Midway, when it was attacked by SBD Dauntless dive-bombers from the USS Yorktown and the USS Enterprise.
  3. Kaga: This carrier was also sunk during the Battle of Midway, when it was attack by SBD Dauntless dive-bombers from the USS Yorktown and the USS Enterprise.
  4. Soryu: This carrier was also sunk during the Battle of Midway, when it was attack by SBD Dauntless dive-bombers from the USS Yorktown and the USS Enterprise.
  5. Zuikaku: This carrier was sunk during the Battle of the Philippine Sea in June 1944, when it was attack by SBD Dauntless dive-bombers from the USS Enterprise and the USS Hornet.
  6. Shokaku: This carrier was also sunk during the Battle of the Philippine Sea, when it was attack by SBD Dauntless dive-bombers from the USS Enterprise and the USS Hornet.
  7. Taiho: This carrier was sunk in June 1944, when it was attack by SBD Dauntless dive-bombers from the USS Essex.

The American Heritage Museum worked closely with the National Naval Aviation Museum in Pensacola, FL on an opportunity to bring this pivotal aircraft type to the American Heritage Museum in Stow, MA. In May, 2022, representatives from the U.S. Navy notified AHM President Rob Collings that we were approved to receive the SBD-5 BuNo 36177 previously on display at the Pearl Harbor Aviation Museum in Honolulu, Hawaii.

The SBD-5 BuNo 36177 was accepted by the U.S. Navy on October 7, 1943 at Naval Air Station Alameda and shortly after was transferred to NAS Glenview in the Chicago area for use in aircraft carrier landing qualification training on the USS Sable and USS Wolverine on Lake Michigan.

On January 19, 1944, while attempting to land on the USS Wolverine, Ensign Ronald Kelly experienced a loss of power on approach and soft landed in the water prior to reaching the carrier. The aircraft lay on the floor of Lake Michigan for over five decades. It was recovered in nearly original condition and had been on display at the Pearl Harbor Aviation Museum with the very same paint since 1944. SBD-5 BuNo 36177 is now on display in the Pacific War exhibit inside the American Heritage Museum.

footer.php

Museum Closed Saturday, February 11th for Private Vietnam POW Event

The American Heritage Museum will be closed to the public on Saturday, February 11th for a private Vietnam POW Event. The museum will re-open Sunday, February 12th from 10:00am to 5:00pm and the new Hanoi Hilton POW Exhibit will be open that day for visitors.