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Illustrated with more than period photographs, a third of them rare original color photos, plus color profiles and detailed line drawings. In addition to keeping a watchful eye out for enemy activities, Catalina crews also rescued countless downed airmen as well as sailors from stricken ships.

Through daring bomb and depth-charge attacks on enemy vessels, Catalina airmen also contributed directly to the defeat of the Axis powers in combat. This all-new page volume from Squadron tells the story of the Catalina through over vintage photos, over 30 of which are in color, as well as eight color profiles and numerous detailed line drawings. Illustrated with more than photographs. So great was the Soviet success with the P, some forget that the aircraft also served well for the British, Free French, and the United States, on whom this volume focuses. The engine was positioned behind the pilot with a long shaft connecting it to the propeller.

Lack of a turbo-supercharger and limited room for on-board fuel tanks made the aircraft ill-suited to high-altitude combat, and as a result many of the Ps were shipped off to the Soviet Union, where relatively low speeds and low altitudes were characteristic of air combat. Soviet pilots appreciated the P's armament, particularly its 37mm nose cannon. Despite its high-altitude limitations, American combat forces made good use of the P in the Mediterranean and Pacific theaters, where in lower-altitude engagements, the aircraft held its own against Zeros and other enemy planes.

Illustrated with photos, detailed line drawings, and more than a dozen color profiles. Navy as a carrier-based dive bomber during the last two years of World War II. Intended to replace the much smaller Douglas SBD Dauntless and tasked with meeting demanding requirements, the Helldiver suffered from numerous difficulties in its development stage.

An initial prototype crashed less than two months after its first flight, and a second prototype crashed two months after it first took to the air. Improvements were made, however and after modifications demanded by the U. The aircraft was not well liked by air crews, however, due to its large size, heavy weight, and lateral instability. During the Battle of the Philippine Sea in June , 45 Helldivers ran out of fuel and were lost before they could return to their carriers.

More modifications ensued and the more powerful SB2C-3 made its appearance, equipped with the R Twin Cyclone engine and a Curtiss four-blade propeller, in Helldivers helped sink the battleship Musashi in October and, in April , sent the battleship Yamato to the bottom of the ocean - the two heaviest and most powerfully armed battleships ever built. In service for only a decade, the supersonic bomber was dubbed the Hustler - a tribute to its impressive performance.

While a number of manufacturers responded, Convair's design, which drew heavily on that firm's previous delta-wing fighter stylings, was favored. While the initial operational use of the B was beset with delays, and in fact at one time SAC outright opposed the aircraft, as the decade of the s began the B brought SAC much desired prestige as it set a successive number of records involving speed and altitude.

Despite its impressive performance, the B was not without shortcomings. For one thing, its 1,mile unrefueled range was relatively modest.

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For another, the Soviets developed the SA-2 Guideline surface-to-air missile that could strike the Hustler at its 63, foot ceiling. Finally, the operational cost of the bomber was extremely high. Then, as the Nixon Administration made one last attempt to bring the Vietnam War to a successful end, Defense Secretary Melvin Laird advanced this phase-out to Fiscal Year to cut defense expenditures.

Accordingly, the aircraft were, except for a few display specimens, shuttled off to Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, where they lingered in storage until , at which time they were sold for scrap to Southwestern Alloys. Illustrated with over photographs.

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Starfighters then broke the world altitude record in May and the world air-speed record nine days later. It was the first aircraft to hold both records simultaneously. Many of the Starfighter's records stand today. Known as a 'missile with a man in it', Starfighters trained astronauts such as Chuck Yeager on the edge of space, fought over Vietnam, and were lethal Cold War interceptors capable of firing air-to-air nuclear missiles.

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During its year career, it was used by no less than 15 nations from Jordan to Taiwan. Italy finally retired its fleet in It is poised to be reborn as a civilian satellite-launcher in Through more than vintage photos - many in original color - numerous line drawings, and new color profiles, this new volume chronicles the remarkable military career of this aircraft. In May the first Blackbird flew over Vietnam.

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During the Vietnam War, SR overflights averaged one per day, during which time the enemy unsuccessfully fired surface-to-air missiles against it. Another version, the YF, was tested as a high-altitude interceptor but never made it to series production. Uncover the once top-secret history of the famous Blackbird through this all-new page book, packed with detailed line drawings and over photographs. Other nations continued to fly the venerable Skyraider into the s. Known alternately as the 'flying dump truck,' a testament to its payload capacity; and 'SPAD,' an homage to its massive radial engine and anachronistic propeller in an age of jet aircraft, the rugged Skyraider endeared itself to both air and ground crews.

Retrace the history of the famous Douglas Skyraider through this all-new page book, packed with detailed line drawings, color profiles, and over vintage photographs, more than 30 of them in vintage color. Thus far, the aircraft has compiled one of the most enviable records of a post-Vietnam fighter, logging over victories and no losses in air to air combat.

The bulk of the fighter aircraft operated by the USAF in Vietnam had been conceived during the Cold War as interceptors against nuclear-armed Soviet bombers. This strategy involved high altitude, high speed, air to air missile armament, and a long range. Utilizing these aircraft in Vietnam, with visual engagement rules, pointed to the shortcomings of the planning. Though both the F and F-4 were deployed to Vietnam, neither were truly optimized for the role that they were forced into.

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Further shortcomings of the then-current fighter strategy was revealed in July when the Soviet's unveiled the MiG Foxbat. The Foxbat was a twin tail, twin engine fighter aircraft capable of Mach 2. This program had begun as an effort to develop a multi-role aircraft with variable geometry wings. After briefly considering a lightweight, single engine fighter, a concept discarded in light of the shortcomings of the F, Project Definition Phase contracts were issued to Fairchild-Republic, McDonnell Douglas, and North American Rockwell on December 30, After considering the proposals advanced by all three firms, a design and development contract was issued to McDonnell Douglas for the aircraft that would be designated F Under the UTTAS Utility Tactical Transport Aircraft System competition, the new clean-sheet design intended to rectify all of the UH-1s shortcomings, while integrating the latest technology developments in helicopter construction and power-plant design.

If troops were not to be carried, that same lifting power provided by two engines would instead lift underslung cargo loads, up to a maximum of 8, lbs. The cargo cabin space had to be able to be converted with a minimum of effort for use in aeromedical evacuation, utility roles or as an infantry assault transport. The result was the UH Blackhawk. Exclusive photos illustrate the rarely seen inner workings and outer features of the BG, with additional coverage of the B, BB, and BC.

Initially dubbed 'the Widowmaker' due to its high wing loading and high landing speeds. But following refinements in the design and improved crew training, the B ended the war with the lowest loss rate of any USAAF bomber. Included are more than photographs, plus numerous detailed line drawings and color profiles.

XB-70 Valkyrie - US AIR FORCE (USAF)

While the Bearcat prototype first took to the air in August , and the first squadron equipped with the new fighters was operational in May , the war ended before the Bearcat actually saw combat in World War II. The type would ultimately see combat in the First Indochina War. Visually chronicles this diminutive fighter with ample images and captures the nuances of this famed warbird.


Illustrated with photographs 89 vintage black-and-white photos, 13 color photos from the same time period, and 77 further color photos of preserved aircraft plus five color profiles and 17 detailed line drawings. During the 25 years in which the A-4 was on the production line, 2, Skyhawks were built. A relatively light aircraft, with a maximum takeoff weight of 24, pounds and with a top speed exceeding mph, the Skyhawk was operated not only by the US Navy and Marines but also by the air forces of Australia, New Zealand, Israel, Malaysia, Argentina, Singapore, Brazil, Indonesia, and Kuwait.

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With a reputation for toughness and agility, Skyhawks remained a part of the American arsenal for nearly half a century - the US Navy retired the A-4 as recently as Meanwhile, the battle-tested warrior continues to serve today other militaries around the world. Noted military author Lou Drendel outlines the initial Allied military response against the al-Queda terrorist network and the Taliban government in Afghanistan that provided them safe haven and training facilities.

Extensively illustrated with over photos - half in full color. Over the years, it evolved into an outstanding surveillance and anti-surface platform, effective not only against submarines but also large and small surface ships. As its nearly year career came to an end in , the Viking also took on the carrier air wing organic tanking requirements, retiring with over half of its service life remaining.

A total of aircraft were built and served in 16 United States Navy squadrons. The Viking and its main variant, the highly-classified ES-3A Shadow electronic surveillance aircraft, played a key role in the Cold War and in the conflicts of the s. The book is one of the few publications to tell the Viking story and is packed with photos and detailed line drawings, all depicting the aircraft's weapons, paint schemes, sensors and interior. It also provides an overview of some of the more significant variants that were studied, but never fully pursued, such as the Carrier On-Board Delivery COD and dedicated KS refueling variants.

It also discusses the aircraft's role in Operation Desert Storm and how the lessons learned from that conflict impacted the Vikings' mission during the latter part of the s and early s. Illustrated with photographs, line drawings, and numerous color profiles.

Based on the US Army's UH Black Hawk, and developed in accordance with the Light Airborne Multi-Purpose System or LAMPS concept of helicopters that extend the search, detection, surveillance, and attack capabilities of ships, the Seahawk family of Navy choppers is distinguished by its hinged tail that facilitates operations from giant aircraft carriers or diminutive destroyers and frigates.

The author introduces you to the SHF Ocean Hawk with its AQSF dunking sonar for detecting submerged vessels, the HHH Rescue Hawk, that can fly nautical miles from base to perform a rescue and then return to base and which also serves in sea-air-land SEAL team operations, the MHR Strikehawk loaded with sophisticated avionics that facilitate undersea warfare and surface warfare operations in shallow littoral regions as well as deep, blue water ocean environments, and finally the MHS Knighthawk with its two cabin doors that does everything from aeromedical evacuation and search and rescue to mine countermeasures and special operations transport.

In , the Air Force announced plans to relocate the aircraft to its national museum and finish restoring it. The next year, two convoys trucked the disassembled aircraft to the cluttered World War II-era hangars that now house the restoration effort. When, five or more years from now, the work is complete, the museum will permanently display the Belle to visitors. In 25 missions the Memphis Belle had its tail splintered, five engines shot out, and its body pocked with hundreds of holes from German flak.

The Belle is now missing most of the interior: the pilot, copilot, and navigator seats, the control yokes, and much more. Finding replacements is difficult. While the United States built 13, Bs, fewer than remain. For some pieces, replacements are being fabricated. Molds have been made for the plexiglass in the top turret, and for an aft fuselage ring frame.

The original cloth-coated wire is no longer made in the United States, so the restorers are buying it new in Great Britain. Though the wires will be out of sight, the restorers are intent on making the aircraft as authentic as possible. As for the body, all the paint is being stripped. We want to get it stripped down so we can undertake the structural repairs first. The names have been photographed; they will disappear again when the aircraft is repainted. The aircraft arrived with several large patches on its tail.

They were quick-and-easy fixes made with flat sheet metal; the original tail, however, had a compound contour.

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Although many books have been published about the B, none has been an in-depth look, with most being either…. The study of the U. From shipping strikes, to strafing runs on airfields, step back in time and into the violent days of World War II…. This meticulously researched volume is a must in the library of any aviation buff: the most comprehensive….

From the authors of Talisman-A Collection of Nose Art, volume one of a projected multi-volume historical series on…. Over the years the B has been described only in a small number of magazine articles and in a booklet that have…. Schiffer Publishing, Ltd. All rights reserved.