Aircraft Data Sheet
for SBD-5 BuNo 54654
|The Dauntless was the standard shipborne dive-bomber of the US Navy from mid-1940 until November 1943, when the first Curtiss Helldivers arrived to replace it. The SBD was gradually phased out during 1944, and the 20 June 1944 strike against the Japanese Mobile Fleet in the Battle of the Philippine Sea was therefore its last major action as a carrier-borne aircraft.|
In 1942-43, at the Battle of the Coral Sea, in the bitter Guadalcanal campaign and most of all in the decisive Battle of Midway, the Dauntless did more than any other aircraft to turn the tide of the Pacific War. At Midway on 4 June 1942 it wrecked all four Japanese carriers, and later in the battle sank a heavy cruiser and severely damaged another. From 1942 through to 1945, in addition to its shipboard service, the SBD saw intensive use with the US Marine Corps, flying from island bases.
It was in the great carrier battles of the Coral Sea and Midway that the SBD became a legend when it was credited with severely damaging one carrier and helping sink another (Shoho) during the former encounter and sinking four carriers during the latter. The Midway success not only broke the back of Japanese naval carrier aviation, but also represented the turning point of the Pacific campaign. Service feats by the SBDs throughout World War II are nothing less than amazing - shooting down 138 planes and sinking 300,000 tons of enemy shipping while losing less than 100 to enemy fire (the lowest loss rate of any aircraft of the entire war).
Ordered by the Navy in 1939, the first SBD "Dauntless" dive bombers produced by Douglas Aircraft Company were delivered to the U.S. Marine Corps and to carrier units in 1940. Some were also produced for the Army as the A-24 "Banshee". Of the 5,396 built, only a few remain today. www.aviation-central.com
Click on a picture to see larger version.
Photo by Don Williams.
Photo provided by Aubrey Brittian.
Photo by Toney Herlevic
|Remarks: This aircraft is being loaned to SDACM Midway by Mr. David Tallichet. It had been at the MAPS Air Museum before it was moved to Midway's restoration hangar in July 2006. This aircraft became a USS Midway Museum exhibit on 29 May 2007.|
Nicknames: Barge, Slow But Deadly, Speedy D
Bu No 54654 Assignment Record
Assignment record not yet available.
Date of manufacture: Unknown
SPONSOR WANTED -- Mr. Tallechet has agreed to loan this aircraft to SDACM Midway for ten years. It could be made a permanent Midway exhibit if an individual or group were to buy the aircraft from Mr. Tallechet and donate it back to SDACM Midway as a sponsored exhibit. For more information, please e-mail Sidney Baker at email@example.com.
Page updated on 19 December 2007