Canadair CL-41 Tutor

Canadair CL-41 Tutor

infobox Aircraft
name= CL-41 Tutor
type=Trainer, Ground-attack aircraft

caption=Snowbirds flying the Canadair Tutor c.2005
first flight=13 September, 1960
retired= 2000 (Canadian Forces)
status= Small numbers currently in flying condition for testing and aerobatic demonstration
primary user=Canadian Forces
more users=Royal Canadian Air Force
Royal Malaysian Air Force
produced= 1963–1966
number built= 212
unit cost=
variants with their own articles=

The Canadair CL-41, designated the CT-114 "Tutor" in RCAF and later unified Canadian Forces use, is a jet trainer aircraft designed and built by Canadair. Ordered in September 1961, the aircraft went on to serve as the Canadian Forces primary jet trainer until 2000, when it was replaced by the CT-155 Hawk and CT-156 Harvard II. The CL-41G supplied to Malaysia was built as a ground-attack aircraft.

The Tutor is perhaps best recognized as the aircraft used by the Snowbirds airshow team.

Design and development

The CL-41 design was the product of the Canadair Preliminary Design department led by Roy Dishlevoy, Joe Knapp, Fred Philips, Bob Ross and Bob Werett. [ Dishlevoy 2005, p. 8-10. ] The design incorporated a turbojet-powered, low wing monoplane with a tricycle undercarriage and a T-type tail assembly. The flying controls are manual with spring tabs. The cabin, closed by a bubble-type canopy, can be pressurised to a differential of 3 psi (20 kPa), the equivalent of about 2,000 m of altitude. It was designed to be a side-by-side trainer for providing elementary jet flight training and other training to an advanced level. The prototype first flew on 13 September 1960.

One critical area of design was the positioning of the fin. The CL-41 was intended to demonstrate spin recovery. If the fin is too far forward, spin can not be initiated, but if it is too far aft, recovery becomes impossible. Model tests were done to find the optimum position. The original Tutor wind-tunnel model had a cruciform tail, which was revised to the T-tail design by removing the portion above the horizontal stabilizer.

Operational history

In September 1961 the Canadian government ordered 190 examples of the production variant, CL-41A for the RCAF as the CT-114 "Tutor". For over 30 years, the Tutor, known affectionately as "Toot" in RCAF and CF use, served as a primary trainer. In 1976, the Canadian Forces modified 113 survivors with provision for two external fuel tanks (drop tanks) and upgraded avionics.

The company also developed an armament training and light attack variant, the CL-41G, with an uprated engine and underwing hard points to allow the carriage of external stores (up to 4,000lb (1814 kg) of weapons) and drop tanks. In March 1966, the Royal Malaysian Air Force ordered 20 (serials M-22-01 to M22-11) CL-41G-5 Tebuan (which means "Wasp" in the Malay language) aircraft as "Counterinsurgency" (COIN) aircraft . The Tebuan entered service in Malaysia in 1967, serving for over 20 years, before being phased out in June 1986 and replaced by the Aermacchi MB-339A.

One other variant was developed, the CL-41R which was fitted with an F-104 Starfighter nose as a proposed electronic systems trainer for future RCAF CF-104 pilots. The R model never went into production.


In 1967, ten Tutors were modified for use as a formation aerobatic aircraft by the RCAF (and later the unified Canadian Forces) display team, the "Golden Centennaires" to celebrate Canada's Centennial year. The display team was later disbanded but, a few years later, 431 Air Demonstration Squadron was reactivated as the nine-aircraft team, the "Snowbirds," who continue to perform at air shows and special events including the annual flypast on Canada Day over the capital city, Ottawa.

Modifications for the Snowbirds include: a smoke generating system, a unique paint scheme for added crowd appeal, and a highly tuned engine to enhance engine response in low level flying.


;CL-41:Two prototypes, "CF-LTW-X" and "CF-LTX-X" used for company engineering and testing program;CL-41A:A total of 190 trainers produced for RCAF and CF use as the CT-114. A number were modified with smoke generating systems and other modifications for the "Snowbirds" aerobatic team;CL-41G:Unique version for the Royal Malayan Air Force (RMAF). A total of 20 ground-attack variants, known as the "Tebuan" in service with RMAF.;CL-41R:One conversion of "CF-LTX-X" with a CF-104 nose grafted on to demonstrate the use of CF-104/F-104G radar and avionics; no production examples were built.


*Royal Canadian Air Force (CT-114 Tutor)
**Golden Centennaires display team
*Canadian Forces
**431 Air Demonstration Squadron ("Snowbirds" display team);MYS
*Royal Malaysian Air Force


Although the CL-41 Tutor has been retired from active training, 22 Tutors continue to fly with the Canadian Forces with the Snowbirds and the Aerospace Engineering Test Establishment at CFB Cold Lake. A number of airframes are held in reserve for future deployment as replacement Snowbird mounts.

Today, at least five CL-41s fly as civilian aircraft, including one Tebuan. The original prototype, "CF-LTW-X" is displayed as a "gate guardian" at Southport Aerospace at the former CFB Portage la Prairie. while the CL-41R, "CF-LTX-X", is now part of the Reynolds-Alberta Museum in Wetaskiwin, Alberta.

A CL-41G was given to Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach, Florida by John Travolta in 2001. [ cite web|url =|title = John Travolta Donates Jet to Embry-Riddle|accessdate = 2008-01-30|last = Ross|first = Bob|authorlink = |year = 2001|month = November] It has yet to be determined what will become of this plane however it will never fly again, due to extensive mechanical problems.Fact|date=September 2008

pecifications for CL-41A (CT-114)

aircraft specifications

plane or copter?=plane
jet or prop?=jet

payload main=
payload alt=
length main=32 ft 0 in
length alt=9.75 m
span main=36 ft 6 in
span alt=11.13 m
height main=9 ft 0.75 in
height alt=2.84 m
area main=
area alt=
empty weight main= 5,300 lbs
empty weight alt= 2,400 kg
loaded weight main=
loaded weight alt=
useful load main=
useful load alt=
max takeoff weight main= 11,000 lbs
max takeoff weight alt= 5,000 kg
more general=

engine (jet)=General Electric J85-CAN-40
type of jet=turbojet
number of jets=1
thrust main= 2,700 lbf
thrust alt= 1,338 Kg
thrust original=
afterburning thrust main=
afterburning thrust alt=
engine (prop)=
type of prop=
number of props=
power main=
power alt=
power original=

max speed main=
max speed alt=
cruise speed main=
cruise speed alt=
stall speed main=
stall speed alt=
never exceed speed main= 474 mph
never exceed speed alt= 763 km/h
range main= 403 miles
range alt=648 km
ceiling main= 38,000 ft
ceiling alt= 11,850 m
climb rate main=
climb rate alt=
loading main=
loading alt=
power/mass main=
power/mass alt=
more performance=

armament=No armament, but the Tutor can carry external fuel tanks.



* Dishlevoy, Roy W. "Hatching the Snowbirds: The Canadair CL-41/CT-114 Tutor, Its Early History Remembered." "CAHS Journal, Vol, 45, No. 1, Spring 2007".
* Molson, Ken M. and Taylor, Harold A. "Canadian Aircraft Since 1909". Stittsville, Ontario: Canada's Wings, Inc., 1982. ISBN 0-920002-11-0.
* Pickler, Ron and Milberry, Larry. "Canadair: The First 50 Years". Toronto: Canav Books, 1995. ISBN 0-921022-07-7.

External links

* [ Canadian Forces Page on the CT-114 Tutor]
* [ Snowbirds page on the CT-114]
* [ Extensive description of the Tutor]
* [ Image of CL-41G Tebuan at Royal Malaysian Air Force Museum in Kuala Lumpur]
* [ Image of CL-41G Tebuan at Royal Malaysian Air Force Museum in Kuala Lumpur]
* [ Audio coverage of the Snowbirds' CT-114s and an Interview with 2006 Season No. 3 Pilot Maj. Cory Blakely]

ee also


similar aircraft=
* BAC Jet Provost
* Cessna T-37
* de Havilland Vampire T.11
* HAL Kiran

* CL-28 - CL-30 - CL-41 - CL-44 - CL-66 - CL-84

* List of military aircraft of Canada
* List of military trainer aircraft
* List of active Canadian military aircraft

see also=

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