With the success of the DHC-2 Beaver, DeHavilland Canada sought to expand their foothold into the Bushplane market by offering an aircraft with increased size and load capacity. This became the Otter. On floats, skis, or wheels, the Otter is truly a great bushplane.
All of the Otters built between 1951 and 1967 were powered by an Pratt & Whitney Wasp [R-1340] 600 HP engine. The Wasp production ceased in 1960, so replacement engines were sought out, as surplus engines waned. Most of the Otters that are still in service have been refitted with turboprop engines including Pratt & Whitney Canada’s PT6A, Walter 601, and Garrett TPE331. These engines produce between 750 to 1000 horsepower.
This model depicts an Otter that was flying for the US Army in Vietnam. Flying the morning courier run in July, 1968 this aircraft was forced to fly low due to weather. 55-3257 was raked by 3 heavy machine guns and was shot down. The Mayday call was answered by USMC helicopter gunships, and a rescue helicopter. The 3 aircrew members were rescued.