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Old May 30, 2012, 05:35 PM   #28
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Join Date: November 29, 2007
Location: Everett, WA
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The P47 Thunderbolt was the best platform in the war, though the P51 generally overshadows it. The 8 .50 calls in the wings, with its incredible diving capability made it the king of the air when it came to ground support.
As far as ground attack the P-38 with four .50 cals and a 20mm cannon, was imho a better platform. Mainly because all the guns were centrally placed so convergence of fire wasn't as important.

That is of the fighters, the various small bombers including a B-25 with a 75mm gun probably hit harder.
B-26B-10 through B-26B-55—Beginning with block 10, the wingspan was increased from 65 feet (20 m) to 71 feet (22 m), to improve handling problems during landing caused by a high wing load; flaps were added outboard of the engine nacelles for this purpose also. The vertical stabiliser height was increased from 19 feet 10 inches (6.05 m) to 21 feet 6 inches (6.55 m). The armament was increased from six to twelve .50 caliber machine guns; this was done in the forward section so that the B-26 could perform strafing missions. The tail gun was upgraded from manual to power operated. Armor was added to protect the pilot and copilot.
Once rockets became practical in mid 1945 the machine guns and auto cannons took a second place in ground attack.
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