B-24D Liberator (GU2003)

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Wing Span: 48½”
Scale: 1/28
For Ages 14 and up


B-24D Liberator (GU2003)

The Consolidated B-24 Liberator is an American heavy bomber, designed by Consolidated Aircraft of San Diego, California. It was known within the company as the Model 32, and some initial production aircraft were laid down as export models designated as various LB-30s, in the Land Bomber design category.

At its inception, the B-24 was a modern design featuring a highly efficient shoulder-mounted, high aspect ratio Davis wing. The wing gave the Liberator a high cruise speed, long range and the ability to carry a heavy bomb load. Early RAF Liberators were the first aircraft to cross the Atlantic Ocean as a matter of routine. In comparison with its contemporaries, the B-24 was relatively difficult to fly and had poor low speed performance; it also had a lower ceiling and was less robust than the Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress. While aircrews tended to prefer the B-17, General Staff favored the B-24 and procured it in huge numbers for a wide variety of roles. At approximately 18,500 units – including over 4,600 manufactured by Ford Motor Company – it holds records as the world’s most produced bomber, heavy bomber, multi-engine aircraft, and American military aircraft in history.

The B-24 was used extensively in World War II. It served in every branch of the American armed forces as well as several Allied air forces and navies. It saw use in every theater of operations. Along with the B-17, the B-24 was the mainstay of the U.S. strategic bombing campaign in the Western European theater. Due to its range, it proved useful in bombing operations in the Pacific, including the bombing of Japan. Long range anti-submarine Liberators played an instrumental role in closing the Mid-Atlantic gap in the Battle of the Atlantic. The C-87 transport derivative served as a longer range, higher capacity counterpart to the Douglas C-47 Skytrain.

By the end of World War II, the technological breakthroughs of the Boeing B-29 Superfortress and other modern types had surpassed the bombers that served from the start of the war. The B-24 was rapidly phased out of U.S. service, although the PB4Y-2 Privateer maritime patrol derivative carried on in service with the U.S. Navy in the Korean War.

B-24D Liberator (GU2003)
Scale: 1:28
Wing Span: 48.5 inches
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More about the B-24D Liberator

The B-24D Liberator was a heavy bomber aircraft used by the United States during World War II. It was a four-engine, long-range bomber designed by Consolidated Aircraft in response to a request from the US Army Air Corps for a high-altitude, long-range bomber. The B-24D was an improvement on the earlier B-24C model, featuring a larger wingspan, increased fuel capacity, and more powerful engines. It had a top speed of 290 miles per hour and a range of over 2,000 miles, making it one of the most versatile and effective bombers of the war. The B-24D also had a unique design with a distinctive twin tail, which gave it better stability and maneuverability.

The B-24D Liberator could carry a maximum bomb load of 8,800 pounds and was equipped with 10 .50 caliber machine guns for defense against enemy fighters. The B-24D was heavily used in the European and Pacific theaters of the war, playing a crucial role in bombing campaigns against Germany and Japan.

The Liberator was also used for transport and reconnaissance missions, showcasing its versatility as a multi-purpose aircraft. However, the B-24D was not without its challenges. Its complex systems and large size made it difficult to fly, and it had a higher rate of accidents than other bombers. Despite these issues, the B-24D proved to be a reliable and effective aircraft, earning the nickname ‘Liberator’ for its role in liberating Europe from Nazi control.

The B-24D Liberators production continued until the end of the war, with over 18,000 units built, making it the most produced American military aircraft in history. The B-24D Liberator remains a symbol of American airpower and a testament to the ingenuity and determination of those who designed, built, and flew it during one of the most pivotal moments in world history.