SF.260

Date Updated:
Saturday May 14, 2005


 


Technical Details |Service History | Current Status |Photos | Fleet
Information
| Write-Offs


Technical Details

The SF.260 is a two seat primary
trainer and light counter insurgency aircraft. Designed by Stelio-Fratti and
built by SIA-Marchetti.  The type first flew in 1964 and has undergone
constant improvement and upgrades over the years.  It is a popular aircraft
and is currently used by at least 21 other countries including Belgium, Brunei,
Ireland, Thailand and Indonesia.

The main model in use by the PAF is
the SF.260TP powered by an Allison 250-B17D turbine engine.  The engine is
flat rated at 350 hp.  It can be readily distinguished from the piston
engined version by having a slightly longer and sharper forward fuselage as well
as having a three instead of a two bladed propeller.  In addition, the TPs
assigned to the
15th SW are equipped with two hard
points along the mid-point of each wing.  The hard points extend past the
wing leading edge and are stressed to take up to 330lbs of stores each. 
Another two sets of hard points on each side (for a total of four) can be
attached outboard of these heavy pylons but these have not been seen on PAF
aircraft.  When attached, those pylons are stressed to take up to 48 lbs
each.   Normal armament for the SF.260s are two seven round
rocket pods though it can also carry either
.50 cal or
7.62 cal gun pods or a combination of
these.

The other versions in the Philippine
inventory, though now mostly stored are the SF.260MP and WP versions.  The
basic difference between the two versions is the engine.  MP/WPs are
equipped with the six-cylinder Lycoming O-540 which in turn drives a two bladed
propeller.

The PAF has initiated a program
called the "Layang" project which sought to convert the remaining existing MP/WP
versions to the TP standard.  The first conversion was of an MP model (SN
15-18) which first flew on June 1996.  Primary difference from the factory
produced version is in the turbine exhausts – the factory version has two long
exhausts coming down from the bottom forward section of the aircraft and
extending almost to the bottom of the firewall.  The local Layang
conversion has two exhaust stubs that are considerably shorter than the factory
version.

Some 18
SF.260MP/WPs were originally to be upgraded to the SF.260TP standard under
Project Layang, with the first being delivered in 1996. However, it seems that
the project eventually involved the conversion of existing SF.260TPs from
training to attack versions only and that some seven or so were converted by
2002, with the first two examples being put into service with 15th Strike Wing
in Apr 2001.  The conversions to the attack version primarily involved
fitting the hard points and the gun sights to the aircraft as well as clearing
the aircraft to use the various armament options.

Service
History

The Philippine Air Force has long
been associated with the type and began receiving SF.260s since August 1967. 
All PAF aircraft were delivered new from the factory.  As a class, the type
remains to be one of the more current and more modern aircraft in the Philippine
Air Force inventory.

Twenty-seven
SF.260MPs were delivered from May 1973 onwards. Most of the survivors were
reportedly traded in for SF.260TPs. Six SF.260WPs were sold to the Burkina Faso
AF in 1986.  A further six SF.260WPs were disposed of by public auction
(c/ns reported as 11615, 11917, 12632, 14252, 17033 and 17040).

Nineteen
SF.260WPs were also acquired. These were withdrawn when SF.260TPs entered
service. Six WPs were assigned to the 17th Assault Squadron of the 15th Strike
Wing and painted in camouflage colors until replaced by
MG.520s
.

Eighteen
SF.260TPs ordered in Dec 1991 and delivered from c. July 1993. Seven are
assigned to the 15th Strike Wing and assigned to the 18th Assault Squadron based
at Atienza Air Base

to supplement the OV-10s in
the light strike/COIN role. 

The first aircraft were all assigned
to the 100th Training Wing (
102
Pilot Training Squadron
) flying out of
Fernando Air Base
in Batangas province.  They were used for both primary and advanced flight
training until the delivery of the S211s which took over the Advanced Training
role.  The SF.260TPs continue to be used in the primary training role by
the 102 PTS but are now based in
Rajah Buayan Air Base
in Davao. 

Current
Status

TP numbers have improved somewhat
because it is taking on new COIN roles to supplement low OV-10 operational
rates. 

Additional SF.260s

"Project Layang".  Some
18 SF.260MP/WPs were originally to be upgraded to the SF.260TP standard under
"Project Layang", with the first being delivered in 1996. However, it seems that
the project eventually involved the conversion of existing SF.260TPs from
training to attack versions only and that some seven or so were converted by
2002, with the first two examples being put into service with 15th Strike Wing
in Apr 2001. 


Ex-Zambia/Aerotech
Philippines SF260MZ
.  In December 2004, the PAF is negotiating with
Aerotech Industries Philippines for the long term lease of three ex-Zimbabwe Air
Force SF260MZs rebuilt by Aerotech. 

 

See Fleet
Information.

SF.260


inventory


supportable


operationally ready

 

 

 

 


1991 (CY-91)

25

6

5


1992 (CY-92)

25

7

6


1993 (CY-93)

25

8

6


1994 (1st semester CY-94)

25

6

3

2000 (Confirmed) 21 0 0 (all in storage)

 

SF.260TP


inventory


supportable


operationally ready

 

 

 

 


1993 (CY-93)

2

2

1


1994 (1st semester CY-94)

8

7

7

2000 (Confirmed, CY-00 Nov) 16 12 0
2002 (speculative) 16 ? 7?

 

Fleet
Information

Write-Offs


Photos