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CT-39A “Sabreliner”

CT-39A “Sabreliner”



  • Wing Span: 44 ft. 5 in.

  • Length: 43 ft. 9 in.

  • Height: 16 ft. 0 in.

  • Maximum Speed:  563 mph at 21,500 ft.

  • Service Ceiling: 45,000 ft.

  • Range 1,950 Miles

  • Crew/Passenger:s 2 crew, plus 7 passengers

  • Engines: 2 x Pratt & Whitney J-60 turbojets rated at 3,000 lbs. thrust each.

The North American Aviation "Sabreliner" dominated the business jet aircraft market in the late 1960s and early 1970s.  Capable of cruising at speeds in excess of 400 m.p.h., it was a much sought after form of executive transportation.

When in military service, the CT-39s were flown as executive transports and used to transport priority cargos. Our CT-39A last served at Kirkland Air Force Base, NM.

The T-39 was developed by North American Aviation Inc. as a private venture to meet a USAF requirement for a twin jet utility trainer.  The prototype T-39 made its first flight on September 16, 1958. In January 1959, the USAF placed a production order and on June 30, 1960, the first production T-39A made its initial flight.


In all, 143 T-39As and six T-39Bs were built for the USAF.  Another 62 T-39 variants were produced for the Navy.  After the bulk of military contracts had been met, the Sabreliner entered the commercial market where it became a highly successful executive jet transport.  The Travis Heritage Center’s T-39 is located on Parker Road, near the hospital.

CT-39A “Sabreliner”

CT-39A “Sabreliner” on Display at Travis Heritage Center

Information derived from, “Travis Heritage Center” by Nick Veronico, copyright Travis AFB Historical Society and Travis AFB Heritage Center Foundation.

This book is available from the Travis Heritage Center gift shop.

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