Republic P-43 Lancer

The Republic P-43 Lancer was a single-engine, all-metal, low-wing monoplane fighter aircraft built by Republic, first delivered to the United States Army Air Corps in 1940. A proposed development was the P-44 Rocket. While no world-beater as a fighter, the P-43A had a very good high-altitude performance coupled with an effective oxygen system. Fast and well-armed with excellent long-range capabilities, until the arrival of the P-38, the Lancer was the only Allied fighter capable of catching a Japanese Mitsubishi Ki-46 'Dinah' reconnaisance plane at the speeds and heights at which they flew. In addition, the P-43 flew many long-range, high-altitude photo recon missions until replaced by F-4/F-5 Lightnings (P-38 variants) in both the USAAF and RAAF. The USAAC considered the P-43 and its variants obsolete from the start and used them only for training purposes. In fall 1942, all surviving USAAC P-43s were redesignated RP-43 indicating they were unfit for combat. Most of the aircraft that were not sent to China were modified for photo-reconnaissance duties and used for training. Eight P-43s (four P-43a-1s and four P-43Ds) were loaned to the Royal Australian Air Force in 1942 and served with No. 1 Photo Reconnaissance Unit, based at Coomlie, Northern Territory. The RAAF flew many long range, high-altitude photo reconnaissance missions before the six survivors were returned to the USAAC in 1943. Number built 272. Info: Wikipedia Profile: Nag's Gallery

Republic P-43 Lancer
Roelf, Sep 15, 2011
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