American Combat Planes of the 20th Century is an incredible reference for anyone who is interested in any American Combat Plane History.   There are 758 pages and 1700 b/w photos in this substantial labor of love by Ray Wagner, who has been passionately researching and writing about aircraft for over 50 years.   Whether you are already familiar with his past works, or just discovering this accomplished author for the first time... This is the book that you've been waiting for!

If you'd like to see the book's   Table of Contents ... Click here.   You can also browse the entire   Index Section   to get an idea of the extensive amount of information that is covered within this book.

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A- 1 Eaton     A- 4 Skyhawk     A- 6 & A- 7     Air Weapons     AV- 8 to A- 10     A- 20 Havoc     A- 22 Martin Maryland     A- 23 Martin Baltimore     A- 24 Douglas     A- 26 Douglas Invader     Attack Planes     B- 2A, F-111, F-117 Stealth    B- 17 Flying Fortress     B- 24 Liberator     B- 25 North American     B- 26 Marauder     B- 29 Superfortress     B- 32 Dominator     B- 35 Flying Wing     B- 36     B- 47 Stratojet     B- 50 Boeing     B- 52 Stratofortress     B- 57 Canberra     B- 58 Hustler     Biplanes     Biplanes, Army Pursuits     Bombers, B- 70 to Stealth     Bombers, First Big     Curtiss Falcon     CO- 1     DH- 4 De Havilland     F3D- Douglas Skyknight    F3H- McDonnell Demon    F4D- 1 Skyray    F4F Grumman Wildcats    F- 4U Corsair    F6F Grumman    F7F Grumman    F7U Vought    F9F G. Cougar    F9F G. Panther    F- 16 Fighting Falcon    F- 84     F- 86 Sabre    F- 89 to F-94    F- 100 to F-108    First Fighters    Flying Boats    GAX    Iraq to Afghanistan    Martin Bombers    Missile Era Fighters    Navy Fighers    Navy Flying Boats    O- 2 Douglas     P- 35 Seversky     P- 36 to 42 Curtiss     P- 38 Lightning    P- 39 Airacobra    P- 40 Line    P- 47 Thunderbolt    P- 51 Mustang Fighter    P- 61 Black Widow    P- 63 Kingcobra    P- 79 to P-81    P- 82 Twin Mustang    SB2C Helldiver    TBF-TBM Avenger    Thomas-Morse    Torpedo Planes    V- 11 Vultee    XB -28    XP -48 / 77   

B-24 Liberator

Page 3
CONSOLIDATED B-24D-13-CO	In December 1942, a hand-operated gun was added behind each side of the nose enclosure, with another at the bottom. The B-24D-25-CO now had ten .50-caliber guns with 4,800 rounds and 901 pounds of armor and bullet-proof glass to protect crewmen. Bomb capacity was up to eight 1,130-pound bombs, but the B-24D-25-CO, B-24D-10-CF, and later models could accommodate eight 1,600-pound bombs. Under wing racks for two 4,000-pound bombs were tested, but proved unsuitable.

The B-24D-25-COís weight had reached 34,985 pounds empty and 56,000 pounds gross before the end of 1942, and top speed was given as 303 mph. In 1943, the R-1830-65, with a new carburetor, was installed, beginning with the B-24D-135-CO, but the -43 engine continued to be used in some later aircraft for production reasons. Beginning with a B-24D-140-CO, the last 293 B-24Ds had a Sperry ball turret like that of the B-17, but made retractable by Briggs to clear the ground. Deliveries were completed July 22, 1943, with the B-24D-170 version, weighing 35,345 pounds empty.

Consolidated built 2,415 B-24D-CO bombers at San Diego, and shipped eight KD sets to Fort Worth, which completed them from April 30 to July 10, 1942, followed by kits for the first 44 C-87 transports, whose delivery began September 14, 1942. Fort Worth added 295 B-24D-1-CF to D-20-CF models from December 17, 1942, to September 10, 1943. Ten more B-24D KD sets were sent to Tulsa in 1942, to give Douglas Liberator experience while waiting for B-24E sets from Ford. CONSOLIDATED B-24D-25-CO

Fordís B-24E was produced to the same specification as the B-24D, but reflected the auto builderís own practices. Willow Run did fly a B-24E assembled from San Diego parts on May 19, 1942, but acceptances on the remaining 490 B-24E-1-FO to B-24E-25-FO Liberators began on September 30, about four months late. B-24E KD kits were shipped to Tulsa and Fort Worth for completion in 1943. North Americanís first 25 B-24G-NTs (March/ October 1943) were like late B-24Ds, but for the A-5 autopilot and Sperry S-1 bombsight used by the B-24E.

Table 6

Table 6 indicates how many Liberators of each model were completed from 1942 to 1945 by each of the five Liberator builders. So many changes in equipment were requested by the various Air Forces that new aircraft accepted at the factory were then flown to modification centers and depots for final preparations. Unmodified B-24Ds and nearly all B-24E aircraft were used for replacement training in the U.S., the crews getting the most recent models when they went overseas. Certain aircraft were retained for development, such as a B-24D that became the XB-24F when modified to test treated-surface anti-icing equipment in May 1942.

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