In this issue, we examine proposals submitted to the Army Air Force heavy bombardment competition of 1946, which ultimately yielded the legendary Boeing B-52. Though Boeing won the initial competition, it struggled to keep the contract as changing Air Force requirements and rival companies put intense pressure on the program. One of its most aggressive competitors was Douglas Aircraft, which submitted scores of strategic bomber studies from 1947-50 in an effort to reopen the contract to competition. The magazine covers the following studies:
• Boeing Model 462 (the winner – 3 variants)
• Convair Long Range Heavy Bombardment Airplane (forward swept wing bomber depicted on cover)
• Martin Model 216 (“flying aircraft carrier” – 2 variants)
• Martin Model 232 (description only)
• Douglas Very Long Range Bomber C (VLRB-C – 2 variants)
• Douglas Model 1112 (heavy bomber derivative of XB-42 – 3 variants)
• Douglas Model 1155 (interim jet bomber derived from DC-6 – 2 variants)
• Douglas Model 1211 (giant swept wing turboprop/jet bomber – 40 variants)
• Bonus drawings of Douglas X-3 Stiletto photo reconnaissance aircraft mounted under a B-36 and Douglas impressions of the Boeing B-52 (2 variants)
Notable Model 1211 configurations include the Model 1211-J “mother ship,” which was designed to carry photo reconnaissance versions of the Douglas X-3 Stiletto and the XF4D-1 Skyray; the Model 1211-J missile carrier, which featured a giant air-to-surface missile mounted on top of the fuselage (possibly an early version of the NAA Navaho); and the Model 1211T-55, a truly giant aircraft with a span of 262′ and a length of 207′ 2″. This 60 page magazine features 77 illustrations, photos and artist’s impressions, the majority published here for the first time. It is printed in full color on high quality 80 lb semi-gloss paper with saddle-stitched covers for just $14.95. Also available is a downloadable PDF version for only $5.95. Click on the cover image to the left for a full preview of the magazine at MagCloud, the printer and distributor of the American Aerospace Archive. Also see the 7 page high resolution excerpt at Scribd. Check our Reviews section to see what other people are saying about this issue.
Note: a revised version of this issue was published on October 27, 2010; if you purchased the first edition published prior to this, you may download a free errata sheet summarizing the changes from Scribd.