FlightAware Discussions

Inaccuracies in attributing Canadair as designer of specific types

Inaccuracies in attributing Canadair as designer of specific types

Due to the manner in which ICNA records are accesses, some aircraft are attributed to Canadair instead of the proper company which created the design and gave a license to Canadair to replicate/manufacture that type.

Two companies merged to form the American company General Dynamics (GD) in 1952. In 1954, GD purchased Convair - created by the merger of Consolidated Aircraft and Vultee Aircraft - and reorganised Canadair as its Canadian subsidiary.
This makes it perfectly clear that any attribution prior to 1954 is totally erroneous. An attribution to Canadair when the design was done elsewhere is nefarious to say the lease.

It is interesting to note that FlightAware and Canadair both operate in Canada.

*	CL-1 	Canadair CL-1 	Flying boat 			First flight: ? 	
	License-built variant of the *Consolidated Model 28-5* (PBV-1A or Canso A and OA-10A-VI)
	PBY-5 (Model 28-5)  Either two 1,200 hp R-1830-82 or −92 engines and provision for extra fuel tanks (with partial self-sealing protection). 
	683 built (plus one built at New Orleans), some aircraft to the RAF as the Catalina IVA and one to the United States Coast Guard. 
	The PBY-5 was also built in the Soviet Union as the GST.

*	C-4 & C-5 	North Star 	Cargo aircraft/Airliner 	2 or 3 	52	First flight: 1946 First del'y: 1948 	
	License-built  variant of the *Douglas DC-4* 

*	CL-13 	Sabre 	Fighter aircraft 	1	0	First flight: 1950 First del'y: 1950 	
	License-built t *North American F-86 Sabre* 

*	CL-30 	CT-133 Shooting Star 	Trainer (aircraft) / ECM / Communication 	1 or 2 	0	First flight: 1952 First del'y: 1952 	
	License-built  *Lockheed T-33 Shooting Star* 

*	CL-90 	Starfighter 	Strike fighter / Trainer (aircraft) 	1 or 2 	0	First flight: 1961 First del'y: 1962 	
	License-built  *Lockheed F-104 Starfighter

oops, ICAO rather than icna; sorry

When did FlightAware move its operations to Canada? Does FlightAware know about this move? From their webpage: “Founded in 2005, FlightAware is privately held with offices in Houston, Austin, New York City, London, and Singapore.”

Perhaps London is London, Ontario?:wink:

OUCH … was I ever wrong! The server is in Dallas, TX

The Bismarck battleship was discovered at sea on 25 May 1941, Ark Royal 's Swordfish were searching nearby when the Catalina found her.

As Canadair wasn’t formed untill 1954, it’s impossible that the PBY was built by Canadair.

I’m not quite sure what you’re trying to do here. Are you trying to use an ICAO type designator to identify a specific aircraft model? That’s just not going to work - the designators lump together many similar-but-unique designs.

If you’re saying that the Wikipedia page is inaccurate, then the corresponding talk page is probably the place to discuss correcting that.


Similarly, North American was the origin of the F-86 design. Canadair was given a license to manufacture copies.

First flight‎: ‎1 October 1947
Developed from‎: ‎North American FJ-1 Fury

Canadair wasn’t formed until 1954
General Dynamics (GD) in 1952. In 1954, GD purchased Convair - created by the merger of Consolidated Aircraft and Vultee Aircraft - and reorganised Canadair as its Canadian subsidiary.

The Wiki is accurate, FA can’t distinguish between Original MFG vs License holder copies. To do that we need both the manufacturer’s records and production serial numbers. Thank you for making my point “that designators lump together”. IMO, credit goes to the designer, not the plant site; eg: B-24’s were built at Fort Worth, Tulsa, Willow Run and all were still Consolidated B-24’s. Per the table at the top, there are at least 5 types where credit is wrongly attributed to Canadair. There are other types (F4U) wrongly attributed too, but that’s another story.

I don’t believe the data is being manipulated at all, but rather there is a narly problem when there are more than one company which has manufactured a given type. Absolute worst case is the aerocoupe, originally ERCO 310, which made its first flight in October 1937. Then a succession of companies bought out the Erocoupe. When accessing a modern database, you get back multiple records … which one do you take?? Sorting the results on Name Ascending is no better than ignoring the issue. Sorting by date of company initial business is no guarantee that the later company was not the initiator of the design – truly a narly problem.

While the latter would be the best approximation, that data is not in the records!

IIRC we try to use the most common variant of a designator when expanding it; I’m not sure if there’s much else that can be done there, given that we often don’t have any additional data beyond the designator itself.

Also, FWIW, the FAA registry lists the manufacturer, see e.g. https://registry.faa.gov/aircraftinquiry/NNum_Results.aspx?NNumbertxt=1FT … so even if we went back to the registry when we could for specific information about each airframe, that’s still going to show the manufacturer, not the design history. (The FAA data is also not very normalized which makes using it trickier).

I find it incredible that only the Canadair variants are the ones registered; that’s one heck of a coincidence!! The inability to disambiguate the DBMS return is much more likely.

Not picking on Canadair but the generality of miss attribution. CORS is linked to Sikorsky when the F4U was designed and registered by Chance Vought. All type prior to creation of ICAO in 1944 have issues resolved by cherry-picking the data, which should have been done far more carefully.

OK OK, I’ve had my rant.

I don’t know what data you’re looking at (a running theme here), but there are definitely non-Canadair manufacturers for the F-86 registered. see https://registry.faa.gov/aircraftinquiry/AcftRef_Results.aspx?Mfrtxt=&Modeltxt=F-86&PageNo=1 (also a good example of what I mean about the registry data not being normalized, look at all the unique manufacturers and the different ways to spell F-86)

Of course! Look at FA

type is correct in the tag, but still rendered as CL-13 Sabre … very typical mistake.

and for grins,
https://registry.faa.gov/AircraftInquiry/AcftRef_Results.aspx?Mfrtxt=NORTH+AMERICAN&Modeltxt=F-86&PageNo=1 show 10 active, when NA F-86 9,860 built

https://registry.faa.gov/AircraftInquiry/AcftRef_Results.aspx?Mfrtxt=CANADAIR&Modeltxt=CL-13&PageNo=1 show NONE active when CL-13 1,815 built

Nothing is consistent :frowning: sigh

The CL-13s appear to be commonly listed as F-86s, e.g. https://registry.faa.gov/aircraftinquiry/NNum_Results.aspx?NNumbertxt=87FS

Wikipedia suggests there are few airworthy examples remaining (<25 in the US), so it’s not surprising there aren’t many in the FAA registry. It is a registry of active aircraft, not a historical record.

Guess you’ll never get it – I would expect honesty in claiming the origin of the type, especially on a site like FA with a community of avid aviation enthusiasts. A manufacturer with a license to build a type is no more creative than a boy scout building a model airplane from a kit – zero creativity. The credit goes to those with insight and skill derive the design from scratch. I’ll not continue as it is futile IMO.

If you can get the FAA to adjust their registry, we’ll pick up that data automatically; perhaps you can direct your efforts in that direction.


Here’s what’s stuck in my craw;

  • The Canadair type is clearly CL-13
  • The North American type is F-86

So we ought to see declarations of either

Canadair CL-13
North American F-86

But we see lots of Canadair F-86, which is grossly hypocritical IMO, but that’s not on me.

I’ve not seen any of either type. Where do you live that you see all these rare vintage aircraft on ADSB ?

Sure; my point is that that’s what the FAA registry says, and we don’t second-guess the data in the registry because overall it’s the best (if imperfect) data source that we have for specific manufacturer/model information.