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CAC CA-23, 75 Squadron, RAAF, 1960

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CAC CA-23, 75 Squadron, RAAF, 1960

The CAC CA-23 was a planned supersonic, twinjet, two-seat, all-weather fighter aircraft designed by the Commonwealth Aircraft Corporation.

In 1949, the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) began assessing replacements for its locally-built Commonwealth Aircraft Corporation (CAC) Mustangs, Gloster Meteors and De Havilland Australia (DHA) Vampires. A series of designs were considered, including the Grumman Panther and an unconventional, twin-jet all-weather fighter: the CAC CA-23.


The Commonwealth Aircraft Corporation (CAC) had developed an extensive in-house design office and capability stemming from Australian Government funding during World War 2. On the basis of the CAC track record and a detailed proposal, the Department of Defence Production granted funds to develop the CAC CA-23 concept.

The CAC CA-23 delta wing design concept was a two-seat all-weather fighter with a low set tail. It was originally planned to be powered by two Rolls-Royce Tay engines; the final version was however designed for the more powerful Rolls-Royce Avon turbojet engines. The aircraft was to be fitted with the most up to date radar and electronic equipment. Its anticipated performance was to be in the region of Mach 1.5 which would have been much faster than any contemporary aircraft.

Over the life of the project dozens of mock-up models were made at different scales, with hundreds of detailed drawings, plus wind tunnel tests proving the delta wing was more than satisfactory. The program was described by the British visiting CAC at the time as "the company's project was a most ambitious design for a fighter and as advanced as anything yet seen in any other part of the world."


The four-year project was ordered into production in 1953 after extensive aeronautical R&D testing in wind tunnels in Australia and at the Royal Aircraft Establishment. The testing results were so promising and ground breaking for a delta wing design that the Royal Aircraft Establishment requested permission to distribute the results to the major UK aircraft manufacturers and Avro Canada.


The CA-23 served with the RAAF in four squadrons – 75, 76, 77 and 78.  It also served with an Operational Conversion Unit (OCU), No. 80 Squadron.  Initialy equipped with four .50 cal HMGs, it was later equipped with four 20mm Cannon and two AIM-9B Sidewinder IR guided air-to-air missiles.












The Model

The model is a resin one, by Uncle Les from Australia.  It was painted with a rattlecan of Silver paint from Bunnings Hardware with alfoil overlaid.   The markings represent a machine from 75 Squadron, cobbled together from the spares box.

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