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Republic P-47 "Thunderbolt"

The P-47 "Thunderbolt was a large heavy single seat fighter-bomber armed with (8) .50 caliber machine guns and a 2,500 lb payload capacity of bombs, napalm or (8) rockets. Its massive 2,500 hp engine enable a maximum air speed of 425 mph and a maximum range with external fuel pods of 1,900 miles. Designed for the U.S. army Air Corps, approximently 12,600 were mass produced from 1941 to the end of WWII. Initially conceived for bomber escort role, it quickly became noted for its ground support role with exception accuracy of its rockets and bombs at these low levels. Its weight and complex configuration of engine mounting, landing gear, exhaust and turbocharger, cooling systems and armament, limited the variants to its original construction. Although, later improvements of a pressurized cabin, transparent bubble canopy and the introduction of multi-plyed tires to eliminate blow-outs landing at primitive air strips, allowing the P-47 to excel as offensive aircraft.


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Christy Butler **** www.shoeboxphotos.net **** **** butts@bcn.net