HH-43F “Huskie”

BY KAMAN

To improve the performance, and especially the load-carrying capability of the basic H-43A design, the H-43B was developed with a Lycoming T53-L-1A turbine engine.  Experience had been obtained with this power unit when the HOK-1 had been modified on a USAF contract and the first prototype flew on 27 September 1956.  The USAF originally ordered 116 of the H-43B version and deliveries began in June 1959.  Further contracts brought the total of this variant built for the USAF to 203, including some for MAP use overseas.  The H-43Bs were assigned to bases of all flying commands throughout the continental U.S. for crash and fire rescue missions.  In addition, some H-43Bs were modified and later production H-43Fs had improved engines and were operated extensively in Southeast Asia for various combat rescue missions.

Warner Robins Air Logistics Center was responsible for the logistics support of the all H-43s in USAF service.  The HH-43F on display was delivered to the USAF in February 1960 and assigned to the 3635th Flying Training Wing, Stead AFB, Nevada.  It was later transferred to various units in the US before retiring from the 44th Aerospace Rescue Squadron at Craig AFB, Alabama in March 1973.  It was transferred to the Museum in 1988 for display. This HH-43 is marked as HH-43F, serial number 58-1845 assigned to the 38th Aerospace Recovery Squadron, Detachment 1, that crashed at Phan Rang Air Base, Republic of Vietnam on October 10th 1968 killing all 5 crewmembers.

SPECIFICATIONS:
Rotor diameter: 47 ft.
Overall Length: 47 ft.
Height: 17 ft. 2 in.
Weight: 9,150 lbs. max.
Armament: None
Engine: Lycoming T53-L-1B
Cost: $304,000
Serial Number: 58-1853

PERFORMANCE:
Maximum speed: 120 mph.
Cruising speed: 97 mph.
Range: 235 miles
Service ceiling: 27,700 ft.