Warbirds – B-24 Liberator Heavy Bomber

In all our discussions about the Pacific, we must never forget our flyboys!

The Clockwork Conservative

December 29th marks the anniversary of the first-flight of the Consolidated B-24 Liberator.  Designed by Consolidated under the name Model 32, in 1939 the proposal was offered to the War Department as the highest flying, fastest, and most advanced heavy bomber that American forces would have at their disposal.  Though having a shorter hull and less wing area, the innovative design features of the B-24 resulted in a lighter aircraft with substantially greater carrying capacity.  Only nine months after the awarding of the contract, the first prototype took flight.

b-24 liberator line drawing

Often forgotten alongside the more famous B-17 Flying Fortress, the Liberator is still the most produced American military aircraft of all time.  More than 18,400 units were delivered by war’s end; over half coming produced at the Ford Motor Company Willow Run plant at Belleville, Michigan.  At peak, this purpose-built production plant rolled out B-24s at a rate of one per hour.  Over 1000 crewmen slept in cots at the facility…

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About GP Cox

Everett Smith served with the Headquarters Company, 187th Regiment, 11th A/B Division during WWII. This site is in tribute to my father, "Smitty." GPCox is a member of the 11th Airborne Association. Member # 4511 and extremely proud of that fact!

Posted on September 5, 2015, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 31 Comments.

  1. A real workhorse of WW2, often overshadowed by the Fortress and the Lancaster.
    Best wishes, Pete.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I had no idea that it was so widely produced.. great story.. thanks

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Unbelievable achievements, 18,400 built and each one under an hour over a million parts, this remarkable feat is astounding, how many men who worked on those assembly lines today, could still recall that great achievement.

    Like

  4. I had no idea they were used so much. I had mostly only heard of the B-17 and B-29 bombers. However, I do know there is a museum in California with a B-24 to visit: https://discoverww2now.wordpress.com/2015/08/22/museums-in-california/

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  5. I recently came across an american tv-series called Pacific. Its about world war 2. I suggest you check out. You would love it!

    Liked by 1 person

    • There have been a few series made, usually center around one service. It either appears as though only the Navy won the war or it was just the Marines (and no Army involved at at all), or the Air Corps did all the work – if you see where I’m going with this. I appreciate your interest and suggestion, I try my best to instill that here while I also attempt to include ALL the services in the effort.

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  6. I got looking and found the following so it looks like a variant:

    “Maybe the most exciting news, given its rarity, is that the world’s only flying PB4Y-2 Privateer, a naval patrol variant of the B-24 Liberator, will be appearing at AirVenture in 2015. The aircraft was supposed to make the trip from Arizona to Oshkosh last year, but engine trouble canceled the trip. However, 2014 did feature the B-24 Liberator “Diamond Lil”, one of only two flying B-24s left”

    Here is a link to the page- http://airshowstuff.com/v4/2015/eaa-airventure-2015-exciting-announcements/.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Great plane and was surprised to learn that they were producing 1 a hour. When we had the EAA airshow here in July I thought they mentioned the Liberator as flying in and will have to check on that since I am curious.Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I am glad there are people who have the resources and the desire to keep our historical aircraft flying. I see there are only two flyable B-24s in the U.S.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Great plane and it’s amazing how quickly it went from drawing board to bombing runs.

    Liked by 1 person

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