Project Description





Hughes OH-6A

Role:  Multipurpose Light Helicopter

National Origin: United States

Manufacturer: Hughes Aircraft Company

First Flight: 1965

Primary User: United States Army

Number Built: 1400

The OH-6A made its first flight in 1963. The Cayuse was publicly introduced in 1966 and set several records, including record for endurance, speed and rate of climb. In 1966 it entered military service with the US Army. During the Vietnam War the OH-6 helicopters served in huge numbers and were used for light observation and utility roles. The Cayuse (white) was used alongside the AH-1 Cobra (red) attack helicopters, forming (pink) hunter killer teams. It could accomplish missions that bigger, slower and louder helicopters couldn’t do. Under enemy fire this nimble machine had to fly low to the ground, just above the jungle canopy. Once enemy positions opened fire at the Cayuse, they were destroyed by the mighty firepower of escorting Cobras. Due to it’s designation “LOH” (Light Observation Helicopter), pilots and crew nicknamed this helicopter “LOACH”.

General characteristics

  • Crew: 1 or 2
  • Length: 23 ft
  • Height: 8 ft 1 in
  • Payload: 1,200 lb
  • Gross Weight: 2700 lb
  • Powerplant: 1 × Allison 250, 316 hp
  • Rotor Diameter: 26 ft 4 in


  • Maximum speed: 170 mph
  • Cruising Speed: 150 mph
  • Range: 380 mi