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Best Nuclear Bomber?


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#11 Flo

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Posted 07 August 2012 - 01:40 AM

what about the B36, B47 and B52, all have all dropped nukes at some point, admittedly mostly buy accident


:D I chuckled...

#12 Kutscha

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Posted 09 August 2012 - 11:08 AM

what about the B36, B47 and B52, all have all dropped nukes at some point, admittedly mostly buy accident


I buy that.;)

#13 flying kiwi

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Posted 11 August 2012 - 04:24 PM

A Valiant dropped a 2.9 kT bomb from 35,000 ft at Maralinga, Australia, on October the 11th, 1956. Valiants were also used to drop bombs on Malden and Christmas Islands, in 1957. I'm not aware of the RAF dropping any by accident.

#14 Double T

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 04:14 AM

I'll offer a vote for the Convair B-58A Hustler... and why is it NOT on this list?

The conventional bomb-loads of some of the other bomber aircraft are certainly impressive, but moot when you are delivering a single nuclear warhead.
The B-58 Hustler was a supersonic Mach2 strategic thermonuclear delivery-system unequaled in it's time. 'Still holds a record for the fastest Transatlantic flight if memory serves. (And the aircraft lost a 'burner on one engine in the final-leg.
The 307th BW operated the 'Hustler flying out of Bunker Hill AFB, Indiana in the 1960's. I can remember looking up in the sky and seeing that distinctive arrowhead shape with 4 contrails blazing across the sky.
The Convair B-58 Hustler was a magnificent beast... and one I just happen to be modeling in 1/48 scale at the moment. (wink)
'Some love for the 'Hustler.

Tim

#15 Ricky

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 01:41 PM

and why is it NOT on this list?


Because I stopped in the 1950s :P

I didn't really want to bring in every nuclear-capable aircraft ever built, as that would be a looong list.

The Hustler did have a rather short career, but this was not due to any failings in its performance (on the contrary it was a remarkable aircraft for the time) but because the mission changed (high-level to low-level) and it was too specialised to adapt.

#16 Double T

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Posted 11 December 2012 - 09:48 PM

Because I stopped in the 1950s :P

I didn't really want to bring in every nuclear-capable aircraft ever built, as that would be a looong list.

The Hustler did have a rather short career, but this was not due to any failings in its performance (on the contrary it was a remarkable aircraft for the time) but because the mission changed (high-level to low-level) and it was too specialised to adapt.


That wasn't clear to me... sorry.
I noticed the Handley-Page Victor entering service in 1958. (The Convair B-58 entered service shortly after in 1960.) I think that's close enough... and it was a nuclear specialist to be sure. I have seen decals for a camo'ed SEA version of the Hustler that was considered for conventional duty in Vietnam. It never was deployed.

Question is: How does it compare to the rest of the "contenders" in your rankings?

Tim

#17 Double T

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Posted 12 December 2012 - 11:24 PM

Just for comparison purposes...
The B-58 Hustler's first supersonic flight was December 30, 1956. Well within the time-frame of the rest of your candidates. It entered service in 1960.

SPEED
1,[email protected],150 ft.

CEILING
Combat: 63,150 ft.
Record: 85,360 ft.

RANGE
1750-5577 miles (with aerial refueling)

BOMB LOAD
19,450lbs/8,820KG.

Maybe not the top-rated bomber in all catagories, but in speed and ceiling there were none that could even come close to the Hustler. I think it should get ten points instead of seven. (wink)
That incredible speed cost fuel and range of course. The B-58 Hustler was born for a different mission in a different time.

I read that the F-111 went on to fulfill the mission of the 'Hustler nuclear-arms delivered at low-altitude... and I can't help but think the B-1 "Bone" is carrying that same torch/capability today. Much love for the B-58 Hustler.

Tim

#18 Ricky

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Posted 13 December 2012 - 08:28 AM

Ok, readjusted with the B-58 (and now out of 8 points)

Speed
Convair B-58 (1,321mph)
Tu-16 (652mph)
Boeing B-52 (650 mph)
Handley Page Victor (627mph)
Avro Vulcan (607mph)
Boeing B-47 (607mph)
Tu-95 (592mph)
Convair B-36 (418mph)

Ceiling
Convair B-58 (63,150ft)
Handley Page Victor (56,000ft)
Avro Vulcan (55,000ft)
Boeing B-52 (50,000ft)
Convair B-36 (43,600ft)
Tu-16 (41,995ft)
Tu-95 (39,370ft)
Boeing B-47 (33,100ft)

Range
Convair B-36 (10,000m)
Boeing B-52 (8,800m)
Tu-95 (8,200m)
Handley Page Victor (6,000m)
Tu-16 (4,474m)
Boeing B-47 (4,000m)
Avro Vulcan (2,607m)
Convair B-58 (1,750m)

Bombload
Convair B-36 (86,000lb)
Boeing B-52 (70,000lb)
Handley Page Victor (35,000lb)
Tu-95 (26,500lb)
Boeing B-47 (25,000lb)
Avro Vulcan (21,000lb)
Tu-16 (20,000lb)
Convair B-58 (19,450lb)


Boeing B-52 - 25
Handley Page Victor - 23
Convair B-36 - 21
Convair B-58 - 18
Tu-16 - 16
Tu-95 - 15
Avro Vulcan - 15
Boeing B-47 - 11

The B-58's score is a good reflection of its specialisms. It gets top marks in speed and height, but bottom marks in range and bombload

I didn't alter anything for in-flight refuelling, as most/all of these aircraft had that capability

#19 Double T

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Posted 13 December 2012 - 10:59 PM

Biggest surprise to me is how mediocre the overall performance of the B-47 Stratojet was. I honestly thought it would place higher in the rankings.
I have no problems with the rankings of the B-58... as it was a reflection of it's design and mission-intent. It was never intended for dropping conventional iron bombs.

Tim

#20 Ricky

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Posted 14 December 2012 - 08:15 AM

I agree that the B-47 was a shock - I was also surprised about the Vulcan's low score.




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