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NDN-1T Firecracker - manufacturing setup

Principals Only Call


Note: We are not selling just a single aircraft. This sale includes the TC, production rights, tooling, drawings etc. Please DO NOT call about this aircraft unless you have the ability to purchase a whole aircraft manufacturing setup.

Design and Development

In 1976, Nigel Desmond Norman, one of the founders of Britten-Norman, the manufacturers of the Islander, set up NDN Aircraft to build the Firecracker, a single piston engined trainer designed to replicate the handling of a jet trainer. It was intended that the Firecracker would be built under license by third world counties to help start up local aviation industries. As such the structure was simple.  The first prototype, powered by a Lycoming O-540 piston engine flew on 26 May 1977.

The aircraft configuration is a tandem two seat aircraft with retractable tricycle landing gear. It has a low aspect ratio wing in order to give fighter like handling and is fitted with an airbrake.

After producing a single piston-engined prototype, NDN developed the aircraft by fitting a Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6 turboprop engine, producing the NDN-1T Turbo-Firecracker. Three NDN-1Ts were built for the British commercial flying school, Specialist Flying Training, who used them for contract training of foreign military students, the first one flying on 1 September 1983. The Firecracker was entered into the competition to replace the BAC Jet Provosts used by Britain's Royal Air Force as a basic trainer, it being proposed to fit the aircraft for the RAF with a more powerful engine and ejection seats. Although the Firecracker, which was planned to be built by Hunting Group if successful, was one of the four short listed aircraft (the others being the Pilatus PC-9, Embraer Tucano and AAC A20 Wamira), ultimately a much modified version of the Tucano, the Shorts Tucano was chosen.

Although NDN, which renamed itself the Norman Aircraft Company (NAC) in 1985, continued to try to sell the Firecracker, no further production ensued, and NAC went into receivership in 1988.

Specifications (Turboprop NDN-1T Firecracker)

Data from Jane's All the World's Aircraft 1988-1989 

General Characteristics

  • Crew: Two
  • Length: 8.33 m (27 ft 4 in)
  • Wingspan: 7.92 m (26 ft 0 in)
  • Height: 3.25 m (10 ft 8 in)
  • Wing area: 11.89 m² (128 ft²)
  • Airfoil: NACA 23012
  • Hardpoints: 4 with a capacity of 181 kg (400 lb) each
  • Empty weight: 1,117 kg (2,462 lb)
  • Max. takeoff weight: 1,633 kg (3,600 lb)
  • Powerplant: 1 × Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-25 turboprop, 533 kW (715 ehp)


  • Never exceed speed: 533 km/h (288 knots, 331 mph)
  • Maximum speed: 367 km/h (198 knots, 228 mph)
  • Cruise speed: 333 km/h (180 knots, 207 mph)
  • Stall speed: 111 km/h (60 knots, 69 mph)
  • Range: 1,158 km (625 nm, 720 mi) with maximum standard fuel
  • Service ceiling: 8,260 m (27,100 ft)
  • Rate of climb: 10.5 m/s (2,060 ft/min)
  • Wing loading: 137 kg/m² (28.1 lb/ft²)
  • Power/mass: 0.33 kW/kg (0.20 hp/lb)

Airframe History and Current Status

A total of three NDN-1Ts were built.  They were originally registered in the UK as:

  • SN 005  G-SFTR
  • SN 006  G-SFTS
  • SN 007  G-SFTT

Currently all three aircraft are in the U.S.  SN 005 is being operated by a flight test facility.  Our principle flies SN 006 and SN 007 is currently in an unassembled state.


We are offering a very rear opportunity for someone to purchase the following:

  • Aircraft SN 006 currently flying under experimental category
  • Aircraft SN 007 unassembled
  • All aircraft technical drawings
  • All aircraft production tooling
  • All intellectual rights
  • All manufacturing and marketing rights to the aircraft. 

We are also offering design and engineering services to update the engine to a newer & more efficient model of the PT6A and update the cockpit to a current generation glass cockpit. 

This aircraft could then be manufactured relatively cheaply and offered on the market primarily as a military trainer that could undercut by a large margin all the current manufacture trainer aircraft.  There is a huge demand for something that the poor nations can afford to purchase and operate.  The performance and handling of this aircraft make it a very good trainer that can be used in the both the primary training role and as an advanced trainer prior to jet training. 

This is a very unique opportunity for a country to procure a turnkey aircraft manufacturing business as a national show piece of excellence and it on line in a very short time period.