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CAC Boomerang

Single-Seat. Single-Engine Monoplane Fighter Aircraft

CAC Boomerang

Single-Seat. Single-Engine Monoplane Fighter Aircraft

OVERVIEW
SPECIFICATIONS
ARMAMENT
VARIANTS
HISTORY
MEDIA
OVERVIEW



The Commonwealth Boomerang was a respectable fighter design emerging from Australia and fielded in response to the impending Japanese invasion of the Australian mainland.
National Flag Graphic
ORIGIN: Australia
YEAR: 1942
STATUS: Retired, Out-of-Service
MANUFACTURER(S): Commonwealth Aircraft Corporation (CAC) - Australia
PRODUCTION: 250
OPERATORS: Australia
SPECIFICATIONS



Unless otherwise noted the presented statistics below pertain to the CAC Boomerang model. Common measurements, and their respective conversions, are shown when possible.
CREW: 1
LENGTH: 25.49 feet (7.77 meters)
WIDTH: 35.99 feet (10.97 meters)
HEIGHT: 9.58 feet (2.92 meters)
WEIGHT (EMPTY): 5,373 pounds (2,437 kilograms)
WEIGHT (MTOW): 8,250 pounds (3,742 kilograms)
ENGINE: 1 x Pratt & Whitney R-1830-S3C4 Twin Wasp radial piston engine developing 1,200 horsepower.
SPEED (MAX): 305 miles-per-hour (491 kilometers-per-hour; 265 knots)
RANGE: 1,600 miles (2,575 kilometers; 1,390 nautical miles)
CEILING: 34,006 feet (10,365 meters; 6.44 miles)
RATE-OF-CLIMB: 2,940 feet-per-minute (896 meters-per-minute)




ARMAMENT



STANDARD:
4 x 7.7mm machine guns
2 x 20mm cannons in wings
VARIANTS



Series Model Variants
• CA-12 (Mark I) - Initial Production Model; 105 examples produced.
• CA-13 (Mark II) - "Improved" CA-12 Model; 95 examples produced.
• CA-14 - Single Production Example featuring turbo-supercharged powerplant; never produced.
• CA-14A - Based on the single C-14 prototype but with redesign tail elements.
• CA-19 - Reconnaissance Platform fitted with single camera; 49 examples produced.


HISTORY



Detailing the development and operational history of the CAC Boomerang Single-Seat. Single-Engine Monoplane Fighter Aircraft.  Entry last updated on 6/5/2018. Authored by Staff Writer. Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com.
The Commonwealth Boomerang (also known as the Commonwealth Aircraft Corporation - or "CAC" - Boomerang) was of completely Australian indigenous design. Based on the CAC Wirraway, which in turn was spawned from the American NA-16 trainer aircraft produced by North American, the Boomerang was developed in direct response to the impending Japanese invasion of the Australian homeland. As with other facets of Australian war-production, aviation design was hardly given much attention prior to the war. However, with the consistent advancements made by Imperial Japan throughout Asia and in the Pacific, Australian soil was now ripe for the taking. It would seem that this British Commonwealth territory might be no more.

The Boomerang was of a utilitarian and highly conventional design, appearing much in line with those early stout fuselage monoplanes featured in the latter half of the 1930's. Wings - which were taken directly from the Wirraway design - were forward and low-mounted on the fuselage which, in turn, was of an all-new design. Additionally, the empennage and the retractable landing gear system were also of the preceding design's creation which essentially made the Boomerang something of a conversion model to her origins. The pilot sat behind the powerplant compartment and was situated under a glazed canopy. Armament was excellent and consisted of 2 x 20mm cannons in the wings and an array of 4 x 7.7mm machine guns in the wings.

With aircraft development hitting full stride in England and the United States, the Pratt & Whitney brand Twin Wasp series engine was deemed too underpowered for their new design. As such, a surplus of this engine type was made available for use in Australia and was promptly set into the Boomerang fuselage. The mating of such power and design produced an aircraft capable of just over 300 miles per hour with a ceiling of 34,000 feet and a range of 1,600 miles. The Pratt & Whitney radial was listed with an output of 1,200 horsepower. From design to flying prototype, the CAC team created the Boomerang in a short three month span of development.

At first glance, the statistics could appear quite pedestrian considering the type would be fighting against the powerful Nakajima, Aichi and Mitsubishi Japanese designs of the Pacific but the Boomerang surprisingly faired quite well in the theater - for the short time it was given to operate. Factors leading to its success were directly tied to the systems ability to withstand punishment, deliver formidable firepower onto its target through its combination machine gun and cannon armament and turn right alongside the best Japanese fighters.

As quickly as the Boomerang arrived into frontline service, it just as quickly gave way to the more capable American designs coming off the assembly lines at a record pace. Once surplus resources had been built up in the United States, both Canada and Australia (as well as Britain) were quickly fielding the now available American designs en mass. Nevertheless, the symbol that was the Boomerang would long remain the symbol of the nation that put forth a proud effort in the design and production of a wartime fighter when it needed one most.

Only some 250 examples were ever produced, making it one of the rarest production fighters of the war.




MEDIA









Our Data Modules allow for quick visual reference when comparing a single entry against contemporary designs. Areas covered include general ratings, speed assessments, and relative ranges based on distances between major cities.

Image of collection of graph types

Relative Maximum Speed Rating
Hi: 400mph
Lo: 200mph
    This entry's maximum listed speed (305mph).

    Graph average of 300 miles-per-hour.
City-to-City Ranges
NYC
 
  LDN
LDN
 
  PAR
PAR
 
  BER
BER
 
  MSK
MSK
 
  TKY
TKY
 
  SYD
SYD
 
  LAX
LAX
 
  NYC
Graph showcases the CAC Boomerang CA-13 (Mark II)'s operational range (on internal fuel) when compared to distances between major cities.
Aviation Era
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Pie graph section
Useful in showcasing the era cross-over of particular aircraft/aerospace designs.
Unit Production Comparison
Comm. Market HI*: 44,000 units
Military Market HI**: 36,183 units
250
250

  * Commercial Market High belongs to Cessna 172.

  ** Military Market High belongs to Ilyushin Il-2.


Altitude Visualization
Small airplane graphic
Supported Roles
A2A
Interception
UAV
Ground Attack
CAS
Training
ASW
Anti-Ship
AEW
MEDEVAC
EW
Maritime/Navy
SAR
Aerial Tanker
Utility/Transport
VIP
Passenger
Business
Recon
SPECOPS
X-Plane/Development
A2A=Air-to-Air; UAV=Unmanned; CAS=Close Support; ASW=Anti-Submarine; AEW=Airborne Early Warning; MEDEVAC=Medical Evac; EW=Electronic Warfare; SAR=Search-Rescue