OV-10 Bronco – Machine Guns, Rockets, and 3-Tons of Ammunition – Vietnam War

Credit: Dark Skies

The North American Rockwell OV-10 Bronco was a tough, rugged, well-armed aircraft that could take a beating and get the job done. Conceived in a backyard by two Marine friends as a particular aircraft for counter-insurgency combat, the Bronco could carry up to three tons of ammunition, several high-caliber M60 machine guns, rockets, and even a gun pod to fight off its enemies. The small twin-turboprop light attack and observation aircraft may not have looked like a seasoned fighter. Still, US Marine Corps observation squadrons, the Navy’s Black Ponies, and the Air Force Tactical Air Support Squadron all took advantage of its combat versatility during the Vietnam War. And yet, the legendary OV-10 Broncos had plenty more to offer. Decades after the Vietnam War ended, the unwavering aircraft would get to see more destructive action against the relentless Middle East… — Join Dark Skies as we explore the world of aviation with cinematic short documentaries featuring the biggest and fastest airplanes ever built, top-secret military projects, and classified missions with hidden untold true stories. Including US, German, and Soviet warplanes, along with aircraft developments that took place during World War I, World War 2, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, the Cold War, the Gulf War, and special operations mission in between. As images and footage of actual events are not always available, Dark Skies sometimes utilizes similar historical images and footage for dramatic effect and soundtracks for emotional impact. We do our best to keep it as visually accurate as possible. All content on Dark Skies is researched, produced, and presented in historical context for educational purposes. We are history enthusiasts and are not always experts in some areas, so please don’t hesitate to reach out to us with corrections, additional information, or new ideas.

OV-10 Bronco Strafing the Target with LIVE 7.62mm!

Credit: Blue Air Training

Blue Air Training’s OV-10 Bronco 453 strafing just before sunset in support of the ANG JTACQC! Since 2016, Blue Air Training is the first and ONLY USAF Accredited civilian aviation company to operate with a weaponized Public Aircraft Operations (PAO) status to fly JTAC training missions.​ Bring on the Live CAS. The OV-10 is undeniably the best JTAC training platform in the air. The OV-10 is designed for rugged, simple, Close Air Support. The versatility and reliability of Bronco along with the capability of long durations and a configuration of 8 bombs, 7 rockets, 2000 rounds, FLIR, and LINK-16, make the OV-10 ideal for JTAC training. Blue Air Training has integrated the highly reliable, cost effective, multi-purpose light attack OV-10 Category E “jet class” into training missions. The versatility and reliability of the Bronco make this aircraft an ideal Joint Terminal Attack Controller (JTAC) training platform, with in-theater endurance topping five hours. The OV-10 was initially conceived in the early 1960s and designed for rugged, simple, close air support, integrated with reconnaissance and forward ground operations. The Bronco’smissions included observation, forward air control, helicopter escort, armed reconnaissance, gunfire spotting, utility and ground attack. The OV-10 was used for decades and flew with three branches of the military, the U.S. Air Force, U.S. Navy and U.S. Marines, along with several allied militaries. Besides the military, other U.S. agencies who flew the OV-10 include NASA, State Department Air Wing, Bureau of Land Management, California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection to name a few. Most recently, U.S. Special Forces have used the OV-10 in several operations in active theaters combating ISIS. —————————————————- TRAINING GROUND TEAMS AT THE TIP OF THE SPEAR Joint Terminal Attack Controllers (#JTAC​​) are specially qualified service members who direct combat aircraft from a forward position while engaged in close air support, and offensive air support operations. JTACs embed with units on the frontline and have the incredible responsibility of calling in an air strike on target, on time. These highly trained warfighters go through intense physical, mental and technical training in order to withstand the demanding conditions of battle and provide their team with the firepower needed for continued success on the battlefield. Blue Air Training brings unprecedented Close Air Support training to these Special Warfare Operators to prepare them for battle. There are few things that can change the course of battle like a properly executed air strike. Blue Air Training https://blueairtraining.com/​​ Blue Air Training is veteran​ owned and was the first provider of contract Close Air Support training and continues to provide the highest quality Close Air Support (CAS) training available — anywhere in the world. We ensure that every Operator is 100% combat ready and elevates the standard of the US Armed Forces.

The OV-10 Bronco Takes Off from Fort Smith for Close Air Support Training (CAS)!

Credit: Blue Air Training Corp.

In support of the 19th ASOS, one of Blue Air Training’s Close Air Support training aircraft, the storied OV-10 Bronco, takes off over Fort Smith, Arkansas to provide our Nation’s Warfighters with the highest quality Close Air Support training found anywhere in the world.

The OV-10 is undeniably the best JTAC training platform in the air. The OV-10 is designed for rugged, simple, Close Air Support. The versatility and reliability of Bronco along with the capability of long durations and a configuration of 8 bombs, 7 rockets, 2000 rounds, FLIR, and LINK-16, make the OV-10 ideal for JTAC training. Blue Air Training has integrated the highly reliable, cost effective, multi-purpose light attack OV-10 Category E “jet class” into training missions. The versatility and reliability of the Bronco make this aircraft an ideal Joint Terminal Attack Controller (JTAC) training platform, with in-theater endurance topping five hours. The OV-10 was initially conceived in the early 1960s and designed for rugged, simple, close air support, integrated with reconnaissance and forward ground operations. The Bronco’s missions included observation, forward air control, helicopter escort, armed reconnaissance, gunfire spotting, utility and ground attack. The OV-10 was used for decades and flew with three branches of the military, the U.S. Air Force, U.S. Navy and U.S. Marines, along with several allied militaries. Besides the military, other U.S. agencies who flew the OV-10 include NASA, State Department Air Wing, Bureau of Land Management, California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection to name a few. Most recently, U.S. Special Forces have used the OV-10 in several operations in active theaters combating ISIS. TRAINING GROUND TEAMS AT THE TIP OF THE SPEAR Joint Terminal Attack Controllers (#JTAC​​) are specially qualified service members who direct combat aircraft from a forward position while engaged in close air support, and offensive air support operations. JTACs embed with units on the frontline and have the incredible responsibility of calling in an air strike on target, on time. These highly trained warfighters go through intense physical, mental and technical training in order to withstand the demanding conditions of battle and provide their team with the firepower needed for continued success on the battlefield. Blue Air Training brings unprecedented Close Air Support training to these Special Warfare Operators to prepare them for battle. There are few things that can change the course of battle like a properly executed air strike. Blue Air Training is veteran​ owned and was the first provider of contract Close Air Support training and continues to provide the highest quality Close Air Support (CAS) training available — anywhere in the world. We ensure that every Operator is 100% combat ready and elevates the standard of the US Armed Forces.

Why the OV-10 Bronco May Be the Ideal Plane to Combat ISIS

Credit: Smithsonian Channel

In May 2015, the Pentagon initiated a secret program dubbed Combat Dragon II. Its purpose: to test the viability of the low-cost, Vietnam-era OV-10 Bronco in combat scenarios against ISIS.

Rockwell OV-10 Bronco Agile Display at Hahnweide Airshow 2019

Credit: Warbirds

North American Rockwell OV-10 Bronco Display at OTT 19 Hahnweide Airshow 2019

OV-10 In Perspective

Credit: AVhistorybuff

An overview of the many capabilities of the North American OV-10 BRONCO

OV-10 Bronco Walkaround Fort Worth Aviation Museum

Credit: Erik Johnston

Jim Hodgson gives us a detailed walkaround of the very cool OV-10 Bronco at the Fort Worth Aviation Museum located at Meacham airport.

Air Warriors OV-10 Bronco

Credit: Tempus Machina

The OV-10 Bronco is the Swiss Army Knife of military aviation, faster than a helicopter, more maneuverable than a jet, and able to provide optimal support for troops on the ground in the most difficult of environments. Follow the journey of this light attack aircraft, from its humble origins five decades ago in the garage of two Marines to its heroic missions in Vietnam. Then see how a disastrous role in Desert Storm nearly grounded the warbird for good until it got a shot at redemption two decades later against ISIS.

North American OV-10 BRONCO_Dual Mode 20mm Gun/Side Firing Coin Gunship

Credit: AVhistorybuff

North American OV-10 BRONCO_Dual Mode 20mm Gun/Side Firing Coin Gunship

16mm film via OV-10 Bronco Association, Fort Worth Texas

Bronco Demo Team OV-10

Credit: Michael Vaeremans

New video made for the EAC 2013

North American OV-10 Bronco – Shuttleworth Season Premier Airshow 2019

Credit: High Flight

The Bronco Demo Teams North American Rockwell OV-10B Bronco, 99+18, UK civil registered as G-ONAA, displays at Old Warden during the shuttle worth Season Premier Airshow 2019. The North American Rockwell OV-10 Bronco is a turboprop light attack and observation aircraft. It was developed in the 1960’s for counter insurgency (COIN) combat. Its primary mission was as a Forward Air Control (FAC) aircraft. It was specifically designed for the Vietnam War and deployed successfully during the Cold war and Gulf War I (Operation Desert Shield). The OV-10B Bronco variant was produced for Germany as a target tug. 18 aircraft were delivered in the early 1970’s and were equipped with a steel cable winch inside the fuselage. A clear dome replaced the rear cargo door and a backward facing seat was installed for the winch operator. Following a career spanning 20-years the Bronco was finally replaced by Pilatus PC-9s and IAI Westwinds in 1991. After retirement the German Broncos were sent to various museums and technical schools of the Luftwaffe.

OV-10 Fly-By for Col. KP Rice, Gone West

Credit: Dr Tandem

This is a fly-by of an OV-10 flown by Michael Manclark of the OV-10 Squadron. This was a short flight to honor the passing of the plane’s creator, Col. KP Rice (10/29/1924 – 12/25/2019). It took place along the coast of south Laguna Beach, CA on February 22, 2020 across from his Table Rock Beach home. The OV-10 flies southward and lets out smoke, then banks to its right to have “Gone West” into the sunset as all pilots who have passed do.

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