U.S. Army Combat Hovercraft
"SK5" Gun Boat The SK-5 hovercraft was
extensively used in Vietnam for patrol and
interdiction missions in the Mekong Delta. This
model duplicated the amphibious versatility of the combat craft: it
can travel over water, land, ice, or snow with extreme ease. It is
an exciting experience to fly and maneuver. The driver will
experience the exhilaration of flight over land and water and simulated
combat in an amphibious environment. The model also lends itself to
racing and land and water slalom courses. The SK-5 model is readily
convertible from a full electric system to a gas powered system. (Not
Body is now CLEAR - Made of PETG
(older version was green - New version is clear to allow for camouflage
- Polyethylene Terephtalate Glycol
- Scale 1/24
- Length: 25"
- Width 14
- Weight: 2.8
- Cushion Pressure:
- Nominal Speed:
- 1 Propulsion motor and propeller
Lift motor and custom made fan
Body and all body parts
required electrical wiring, connections, mounts,
double-sided tape and miscellaneous hardware required for the assembly
of the hovercraft.
- Instruction Manual
Required: (Included in Combos)
- 2 Channel Radio System w/Servo
- Reversible Electronic Speed Control
- 6 or 7 Cell Battery Pack and Charger
British company Hovercraft supplied seven vehicles of the type BHC SR.N5
to the American company Bell of aero system. After the re-equipment on
General Electric Lm-100 gas turbines received the hovercrafts the
designation Bell Sk-5 Model 7232. Three as PACV or Pak Vees
(Patrol air Cushion Vehicles) designated units (004, 017 and 018)
went to test purposes to the U. S. Navy into Viet Nam, where they were
stationed in Cat Lo. From there from operated it 1966 eight months long.
In January 1967 they went to the general overhaul and re-equipment back
into the USA, before they returned 1968 for a further year to Viet Nam
(there Nang and Tan My).
The employment of the Pak
Vees took place during the first Viet Nam stay under the command of the
task Force 116. Starting from 1968 they stood in the service of the
Coastal division 17.
The PACVs was to be
operated in a the position with high speed (70 kn) in the march and
sumpfgebieten of Viet Nam, their employment accompanied however with a
high noise generation of the gas turbines. Also to high mechanical loads
they had obviously not sufficiently been up to, so that them of the
soldiers of the Riverine Force altogether not when optimal resources were
regarded. Compared with the PBRs (Patrol Boat River) the air cushion
vehicles were more expensive also around a multiple in the acquisition
In July of 1965, the US
Navy bought three hovercrafts Sr-n5 model 7232 of Bell Aerosystems
Company. They were imported boats of the British Hovercraft Corporations
and had been modified with shield and a machine gun rank, and changed the
engine for a T-58 turbine of General Eletric who developed 1300 HP and the
radar for an American model.
In 1965, hovercrafts had been assigned by the US Navy as PACV (Patrol Air
Cushion Vehicle). Extensively search missions of and destruction in lands
of the Delta of the River Mekong 1966 had been used by the Tf-116 in the
1967 in division PACV 107.
The US Navy operated seven
PACV (Patrol Air Cushion Vehicle) in the Vietnam. The Tf-116 used three
The fast PACV were e easily operated in plain canals and quagmires,
passing easily for obstacles and on land. However, very barulhentos and
they were sophisticated for the marginal operations. For using aviation
technology they were expensive and difficult to keep. They consume fuel in
amount extreme. The current projects have automobile standard and engines
diesel and are well more trustworthy and cheap.
These models 7232 could develop 52 we and carry 17 equipped combatants.
The costs of maintenance of the 7232 were similar to the one of a jet
aircraft. The price of each hovercraft was next to a dollar million. In
1967 the US Navy modified these extensively hovercrafts endowing with
decks straight (the previous ones were rounded off), the improved skirts,
greater has storaged of fuel and a brought up to date engine.
1968 they had been transferred to the coastal area of Danang. Later they
had been repassed for Coastal Guarda of San Francisco.
The result was beyond the waited one, as much that the US Army decided for
in use in the Vietnam its proper ACV (Air Cushion Vehicles). The US Army
ordered a perfected version of model 7232, called Sk-5 Model 7255. AACV
(Assault Air Cushion Vehicle) had three models beyond one in the transport
version (load and staff) call TACV (Transport Air Cushion Vehicle).
To I oppose it of the models of the US Navy that "had been
militarized", the models of the US Army had been constructed
specifically military use. The armament was heavier with 2 Browning
machine guns 50 and a thrower of garnet of 40mm automatic equal M5 model
to used in the Bells Ah-1 the Snake. The transport version was armed only
with 2 M-60 machine guns of 7.62 mm. The shield was added in the laterals
and special in the positions of the pilot, the radar operator and the
artillerymen of the M5 and the 2 machine guns 50 as well as for the more
sensible mechanical components.
The models of the US Army had represented an important advance in the
warlike use of the Hovercrafts therefore its "skirts" were
secionadas, allowing to one better substitution and repair. Possuíam also
a slope, that better made possible them load and discharge of staff and
equipment. It could load a mule mechanics or a Jeep equipped with a cannon
without jib of 106mm.
The Sk-5 was equipped with a General turbine Eletric Lm-100-pj102 that
developed 1250 Hp the 21,000 rpm. It carried 300 gallons from fuel and it
operated with a radius of action of 165 nautical miles. Its endowment was
of 7 members of the crew and could load 12 infants total equipped. They
had entered in action in 1968 with 39ª Cavalry of 9ª Division of
Infantry. They had operated in areas flooded and marshy as well as in firm
land. In 1968 it had 4 Divisions PACV in the US Army.
The Navy of Brazil tried
the Hovercraft of Bell in 1968. In the climates of the Amazônia they do
not obtain to develop more than 20-24 we. Also the edges could not
adentrar therefore the forest did not allow.