(Photo courtesy Canadian Forces.)
an aircraft company needs to take a chance. Such is the case with the Canadair CL-41
Tutor. Despite the governments initial disinterest, Canadair designed and built two
prototypes of this basic jet trainer. Powered by a Pratt and Whitney JT12A turbojet, this
two-seat trainer first flew in January 1960. Recognizing a good thing, the Royal Canadian
Air Force (RCAF) ordered 190 planes, delivered between 1963 and 1966. Features included
side-by-side seats, an upward opening canopy, lateral air brakes, a T-tail and steerable
nosewheel. The engine was later changed to the more powerful General
The Tutor served steadfastly and
effectively for over thirty years as the primary trainer of the Royal
Canadian Air Force, where it was known by its RCAF designation, CT-114.
An advanced model, CL-41G
(designed as a light attack aircraft), involved the fitting of an up-rated engine and six
underwing hard-points, as modified landing gear for soft field landings, and
zero-level ejection seats. The Royal Malaysian Air Force ordered twenty of
these in 1966, named the Tebuan (Wasp).
Ever since the year 2000,
when the Tutor was retired from the RCAF's No.2 Flying School in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan,
Canada, few of them still fly today. At least ten are still in use with the Snowbirds aerobatic team, and the plane is also in
service with Canada's Aerospace Engineering Test Establishment (AETE). One
of the aircraft's last modernization programs added external fuel
tanks, new avionics, and electrical system updates. Several Tutors and at least one Tebuan
have made their way into private ownership in the USA.
[History by Jeff VanDerford]
Specifications (CL-41 Tutor):
Engine: One 2,950-pound thrust General Electric / Orenda J85-CAN-40 turbojet.
Weight: Empty 4,895 lbs., Max
Takeoff 7,788 lbs.
Wing Span: 36ft. 6in.
Length: 32ft. 0in.
Height: 9ft. 0.75in.
miles with internal fuel
Armament: None (The
CL-41G Tebuan could carry up to 4,000 pounds of weapons
on underwing and under-fuselage hard-points.)
Number Built: ~210 (including CL-41Gs)
Number Still Airworthy: ~25, including
approximately 4 as privately-owned warbirds.
Canadian Forces Snowbirds' site
Guide to Canadian Forces -- Tutor page
Close-Up Photos by Geoff McDonell
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