The Nanchang CJ-6A
Nanchang CJ-6A

This Chinese military trainer (CJ stands for Chuji Jiaolianji or Primary Trainer), is a more powerful version of the CJ-6 which first flew in 1958. The CJ-6A had a production run at more than 3,000 which was supplied to the People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) and the Army Navy Air Force (PLANAF), as well as for export (as the PT-6) to countries including Albania, Bangladesh, Cambodia, Tanzania, Sri Lanka, and continues to be operated by North Korea.

The CJ-6A is based on Cold War Russian design philosophy, including the use of compressed air for starting the engine. As well as retracting and extending the landing gear, flap operation, and brakes. Compared with hydraulic fluid, compressed air is free and does not freeze during winter at such places as Siberia in Russia or Northern China! The red ‘gills’ on the front of the engine can be opened or closed by the pilot to control engine temperature.

Nanchang CJ-6A VH-LNM was imported into Australia in 2003 as an ex-People’s Liberation Army Air Force machine in a dull khaki colour. After refurbishment, paint stripping, and inspection, it was repainted in the colours of the People’s Liberation Army Navy Air Force, or more simply the air arm of the Chinese Navy. Some Western flight instruments have been fitted to the cockpit, however, the configuration of the rear cockpit has been left as close as possible to that used by the Red Chinese pilots during the Cold War.

Technical specifications


STRUCTURE Aluminium ‘stressed skin’. Control surfaces are fabric over metal frames.
ENGINE Huosai 6A nine-cylinder air-cooled radial engine of 285 hp. It is geared to drive a constant-speed (variable pitch) propeller.



Wingspan Length
 10.22m  8.46m


Height                           Empty Weight
3.3m  1,068 kg
Maximum take-off weight Cruise Speed
 1,400 kg  140 knots (259 kph)


Maximum speed (diving):                       Landing speed:   

190 knots (352 kph)

75 knots (139 kph)





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Paul Hartland
November 27, 2017
I was lucky enought to take a flight in this great aircraft. The views were great and the very skilled pilot took me flying in formation over Shepparton. A flight in this aircraft is highly recommend
Julie Van Kerkwijk
February 18, 2018
My flight this morning was one off the bucket list. Pilot Ian Lilley a true aviator of the skies, patiently led me through the ups and downs of altitude and aerial dynamics. An absolutely amazing experience, the Nanchang adventure was 100%.

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