Friday, December 14, 2007

Battles of Bladensburg and Beaver Dams, War of 1812

The battle of Bladensburg, 24 August 1814, was a British victory during the War of 1812 that left Washington vulnerable to attack.
The battle of Beaver Dams, 24 June 1813, was an American defeat on the Niagara front that helped the British to recover from the earlier defeat at Fort George on 25-27 May 1813

Consolidated PB4Y-2 Privateer

The Consolidated PB4Y-2 Privateer was the most radical modification of the B-24 Liberator to see service during the Second World War developed as a maritime patrol aircraft for the U.S. Navy

Oliver Law

Oliver Law was born in Texas on 9th July 1899. He was a somewhat controversial officer in the Abraham Lincoln Brigade which fought against Fascism during the Spanish civil war.

Consolidated B-24 Liberator

A small number of the Liberators ordered by France were delivered to the U.S. Army as the B-24A.
The B-24C Liberator was the final development version of the aircraft, introducing a number of important developments into American production that would become standard on most of the aircraft to follow.
The B-24D was the first version of the Liberator to be mass produced and the first version of the aircraft to enter combat in large numbers with the USAAF.
The B-24 Liberator was produced in larger numbers than any other American military aircraft. This was achieved through the creation of the Liberator Production Pool which saw the aircraft produced at five factories run by three different companies, amongst them the massive Ford plant at Willow Run.
The B-24E was the designation given to B-24Ds built by Ford at their Willow Run plant.
The B-24H was the first production version of the Liberator to be built with a nose turret.
We also add a brief history of the 5th Bombardment Group during the Second World War, the first unit outside the continental United States to receive the B-17 Flying Fortress.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress part 2

The YB-40 was an attempt to provide a long range escort aircraft to support the Eighth Air Force’s daylight bombing campaign over Europe, created by adding extra guns to a standard B-17F
Although the Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress was less important than the B-24 Liberator in the Mediterranean theatre, six Bombardment Groups did serve in North Africa or Italy
The B-17 Flying Fortress first saw combat in American colours in the Pacific, on the first day of the Japanese onslaught, when nearly 30 aircraft were destroyed on the ground. Despite this inauspicious start to the war, the B-17 went on to perform important duties in the Pacific in the first two years of the war.
The Boeing PB-1 was the US Navy designation for the B-17 Flying Fortress and was used to carry airborne early warning radar.
7 December
The B-17 may have first seen combat in American colours in the Pacific, but it would earn its enduring fame with the Eighth Air Force, based in England and fighting over Hitler’s Europe. The story of the B-17 would become the story of the daylight bombing offensive over Germany.
We also add a list of B-17 units of the USAAC and RAF and a B-17 picture gallery

XX Bomber Command, USAAC

We also look at XX Bomber Command, created to operate the B-29 from India and China.
8 December

Boeing B-29 Superfortress

Today we look at the Boeing B-29, adding articles on the development of the Superfortress, the small number of variants of the B-29, the units that used the B-29 and the combat record of the Superfortress during the Second World War.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress

When it first took to the air the Boeing XB-15 was the biggest aircraft in the world, but it had already been superseded by the smaller but more efficient B-17 Flying Fortress.
The Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress is one of the most famous aircraft of the Second World War. It earned that fame with the Eighth Air Force, carrying out daylight bombing raids over Hitler’s Fortress Europe.
The B-17B was the last development version of the Flying Fortress. It was the first model of the aircraft to feature the distinctive flat-panelled Plexiglas nose that was used in early production aircraft and the first version to be produced in any numbers that used a turbo-supercharger
The B-17C was the first version of the Flying Fortress to be used in combat, as the RAF Fortress I. This experience began to suggest that the Flying Fortress was not combat ready in its current form and would lead to the development of the much more heavily armed B-17E.
The last 42 of the 80 aircraft originally ordered as B-17Cs were completed as B-17Ds. The new model featured self sealing fuel tanks, and carried two more machine guns.
The B-17E was the first version of the Flying Fortress to have the aircraft’s familiar appearance. It was designed after RAF Fortress Is had seen combat, revealing that the aircraft was badly under-armed for its role as a daylight bomber.
The B-17F was the first version of the Flying Fortress to be built in really large numbers, with a total of 3,405 aircraft being produced.
The B-17G was the final production version of the Flying Fortress and was produced in greater numbers than every other version put together.
The B-17 Flying Fortress first saw combat with the RAF, in the summer of 1941. Its initial performance as a day bomber was disappointing, but it remained in use with Coastal Command and with No.100 Group until the end of the war.