The De Havilland Aircraft Company of Canada DHC-4 Caribou was designed to provide military operators with a twin-engine STOL (Short Take off & Landing) cargo transport aircraft, with greater capacity than that of the DHC-3 Otter. The type also offered a rear loading capability.
The prototype DHC-4 Caribou (CF-KTK-X) was flown for the first time on 30th July 1958.
Like the DHC-3 Otter, the Caribou is a rugged STOL aircraft which is ideally suited for operations from unprepared remote airfields and boasts a capacity of up to 32 troops, or some 8,000 lbs of payload.
Power is provided by two 1,450hp Pratt and Whitney Twin Wasp radial engines.
In total, some 307 were built in Canada and it found a ready market with a number of military users at home and around the world.
Significant users included the US Army / US Air Force (159 CV-2 / C-7), Australia (31 aircraft serving until 2009), Spain (35 aircraft), India (20 + 4 ex-Ghana), Canada (9), Ghana (8), Kenya (6). A smaller number of aircraft were also delivered for commercial operations worldwide.
In 1966, the US Army relinquished its DHC-4 Caribou fleet to the US Air Force, in exchange for the removal of controls on its use of rotary wing aircraft (helicopters).
Some DHC-4 Caribou aircraft were captured by the North Vietnamese and these stayed in service with that country well into the 1970's. Following the end of the Vietnam War however, the majority of the Air Force fleet were replaced by C-130 Hercules.
The final DHC-4 Caribou was eventually retired from US Air Force service as late as 1985, were it had been serving as the jump-platform for the US Army Golden Knights Parachute Display Team.
The last aircraft in military service was Caribou (A4-140) in Australia where it was eventually demobbed in November 2009. A measure of the aircrafts success was that it was utilised by some 32 different nations around the world who employed the aircraft predominantly in military roles.
Some aircraft have now been modified to turboprop power (two PWC PT6A-67T) by Pen Turbo Aviation and remain active in civilian and commercial hands. It is though that only 3 aircraft remain airworthy, there are a huge number remaining on display in museums around the world (see list below).
|Powerplant||Two 1,450 hp Pratt & Whitney R-2000 Twin Wasp radial piston engines|
|Span||95 ft 7.5 in|
|Maximum Weight||28,500 lb|
|Capacity||Two crew and up to 32 troops|
|Maximum Speed||216 mph|
|Cruise Speed||181 mph|
|Range||600 miles with 7,200 lb payload, 200 miles with 8,600 lb payload.|
|YAC-1||Five DHC-4 Caribou, for evaluation by the US Army|
|AC-1 / CV-2A||56 DHC-4 produced for US Army, re-designated CV-2A in 1962|
|CV-2B||103 additional aircraft supplied to US Army|
|C-7A/B||Re-designation of the 144 aircraft transferred from US Army to US Air Force|
|CC-108||RCAF designation of the DHC-4 Caribou|
|DHC-4A||Developed version of DHC-4 with increased take-off weight|
|DHC-4T||Designation of turboprop conversions by Pen Turbo Aviation|
|A4-210 DHC-4||Historical Aircraft Restoration Society in Albion Park, NSW, Australia|
|A4-234 DHC-4||Historical Aircraft Restoration Society in Albion Park, NSW, Australia|
|62-4149 CV-2B||Cavanaugh Flight Museum in Dallas, Texas|
|A4-152 DHC-4||RAAF Museum in Point Cook, VIC www.airforce.gov.au/raafmuseum/|
|A4-173 DHC-4||Queensland Air Museum in Caloundra, QLD www.qam.com.au|
|A4-195 DHC-4||Australian Army Flying Museum in Oakey, QLD www.armyflyingmuseum.com.au|
|A4-199 DHC-4||RAAF Base Townsville in Townsville, QLD|
|A4-236 DHC-4||RAAF Amberley Aviation Heritage Center in Amberley, QLD www.raafamberleyheritage.gov.au/|
|MSP002 DHC-4||Daniel Oduber Quiros International Airport, Liberia, Costa Rica|
|BM769 DHC-4||Eastern Air Command Headquarters in Shillong, Meghalaya|
|M21-04 DHC-4A||Royal Malaysian Air Force Museum in Sungai Besi, Kuala Lumpur www.jmm.gov.my/en/royal-malaysian-air-force-museum|
|T.9-9 DHC-4A||San Torcuato, La Rioja|
|T.9-10 DHC-4A||Fuenlabrada, Madrid|
|T.9-23 C-7A||Villanubla Air Base in Villanubla, Castile and León|
|T.9-25 C-7A||Museo del Aire in Madrid www.museodelaire.com/|
|57-3079 YC-7A||U.S. Army Transportation Museum at Langley–Eustis near Newport News, Virginia www.transchool.lee.army.mil/museum/transportation%20museum/museum.htm|
|57-3080 YC-7A||United States Army Aviation Museum at Fort Rucker near Daleville, Alabama|
|57-3083 YC-7A||82nd Airborne Division Museum at Fort Bragg near Fayetteville, North Carolina www.82ndairbornedivisionmuseum.com|
|60-3767 C-7A||Travis Air Force Base Heritage Center near Fairfield, California|
|62-4188 C-7A||New England Air Museum in Windsor Locks, Connecticut www.neam.org/|
|62-4193 C-7A||National Museum of the US AF in Dayton, Ohio www.nationalmuseum.af.mil|
|63-9756 C-7B||Museum of Aviation in Warner Robins, Georgia|
|63-9757 C-7B||Hill Aerospace Museum at Hill Air Force Base near Ogden, Utah www.hill.af.mil/Home/Hill-Aerospace-Museum/|
|63-9760 C-7A||Air Mobility Command Museum at Dover Air Force Base near Dover, Delaware|