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Douglas AC-47D Spooky Gunship AKA "Puff the Magic Dragon"

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Uploaded on Aug 18, 2008

The Douglas AC-47 Spooky (also nicknamed "Puff the Magic Dragon") was the first in a series of gunships developed by the United States Air Force during the Vietnam War. It was felt that more firepower than could be provided by light and medium attack aircraft was needed in some situations when ground forces called for close air support.

The AC-47D gunship should not be confused with a small number of C-47s were fitted with electronic equipment in the 1950s. Prior to 1962, these aircraft were designated AC-47D. When a new designation system was adopted in 1962, these became EC-47Ds. In August 1964, years of fixed wing gunship experimentation reached a new peak with Project Tailchaser. This test involved the conversion of a single Convair C-131B to be able to fire a single GAU-2/A Minigun at a downward angle out of the left side of the aircraft. It was discovered that even using crude grease pencil crosshairs it was very easy for a pilot flying in a pylon turn to hit a stationary area target with relative accuracy.

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