Best Allied Heavy Bomber

Discussion in 'Polls' started by carman1877, Nov 1, 2009.

?

Which is the best Allied Heavy Bomber?

  1. Avro lancaster

    8 vote(s)
    21.1%
  2. B-24 Liberator

    3 vote(s)
    7.9%
  3. B-17 Flying Fortress

    3 vote(s)
    7.9%
  4. B-29 Superfortress

    24 vote(s)
    63.2%
  1. carman1877

    carman1877 Member

    Joined:
    May 14, 2009
    Messages:
    51
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Which do you think is the best heavy bomber, and why? based on payload, defensive armament, etc.
     
  2. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
    Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2005
    Messages:
    23,207
    Likes Received:
    790
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Aircraft Maintenance Manager/ Flight Instructor
    Location:
    Colorado, USA
    B-29 hands down. Bomb load, performance, defensive armament, internal systems, it was a half of generation ahead of any heavy bomber of WW2. Lancaster is a distant second.
     
  3. paradoxguy

    paradoxguy Member

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2009
    Messages:
    92
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    6
    Occupation:
    Pediatric gastroenterologist (recently disabled)
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #3 paradoxguy, Nov 1, 2009
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2009
    I agree, the B-29 is simply a class ahead of the other three. Of the remaining three, I believe the B-17 represents the best combination of performance, payload, durability/ability to sustain damage, and defensive armament.

    FlyboyJ--What characteristics of the Avro Lancaster have you ranking it second ahead of the two American bombers? I'm not questioning your choice in any way, I'm asking only from curiosity and a desire to learn more.
     
  4. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
    Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2004
    Messages:
    41,771
    Likes Received:
    687
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Occupation:
    A&P - Aircraft Technician
    Location:
    USA/Germany
    There is no competition here. The B-29 is the best heavy bomber the war period. Other bombers such as the B-17, B-24 and Lanc may have contributed more over the course of the war, but the B-29 was the most advanced bomber built during the war. It could carry the most payload over the farthest distance, best performance and the best defensive systems.

    Can't argue it.

    If I had to rank them all it would be like this:

    1. B-29
    2. Lancaster
    3. B-17
    4. B-24

    Of course the only one that can not really be debated in my opinion is the B-29. Of course you are going to have people come in and say the Lancaster was better than the B-29. I ask them how? Was it a better design? No. Did it have better performance? No. Could it carry the kind of payloads the B-29 could? No. B-29 was hands down the best bomber designed during WW2.
     
  5. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2009
    Messages:
    6,418
    Likes Received:
    64
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    Michigan, USA
    However it entered service so late in the war that it's hardly fair to compare it to the B-17 which entered service 6 years earlier. Rather like comparing a F4F with a F8F.
     
  6. Vincenzo

    Vincenzo Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2007
    Messages:
    2,281
    Likes Received:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    none
    Location:
    Lazio
    B-29 is w/o doubt the best heavy of war since june '44, but before? this is the question
     
  7. davebender

    davebender Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2009
    Messages:
    6,418
    Likes Received:
    64
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    Michigan, USA
    The summer of 1942 is the mid point for the European war. Why don't we use that as our time frame for comparison? That eliminates the B-29 as well as late war variants of other aircraft.
     
  8. parsifal

    parsifal Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2008
    Messages:
    10,679
    Likes Received:
    676
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Occupation:
    Urban Design/Strategic Studies Tutor
    Location:
    Orange NSW
    The B-29 started to enter service in late '43 as I recall.

    There is no contest here. The B-29 is hands down the best allied bomber of the war
     
  9. herman1rg

    herman1rg Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2008
    Messages:
    1,157
    Likes Received:
    72
    Trophy Points:
    48
    The Lancaster was the best due to it's adaptability with various bomb loads right up to the 22,000 LB Grand Slam and of course the "bouncing bomb" used on Operation Upkeep.
    It served from 1941-1945 in WW2 and then through till 1963 after.

    IMHO the B-29 while it may have been more advanced in some areas only came into service into service on 8th May 1944 until cessation of hostilities afterwards it only until 1960. I also believe that the B-29 had a max bomb load of 20,000lbs which is lower than the Lancaster.

    My top 4
    1. Avro Lancaster
    2. B-17 Flying Fortress
    3. B-24 Liberator
    4. B-29 Superfortress

    These are purely my own personal opinions.
     
  10. Shortround6

    Shortround6 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2009
    Messages:
    9,778
    Likes Received:
    802
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Occupation:
    retired Firefighter
    Location:
    Central Florida Highlands
    BY picking and chosing which month and year you can probably alter things enough to get one one plane to be the best at any particular time. at least among the 3 older planes.

    This might be especially true of the Lancaster which had more variations in power plants than the B-17 and B-24.

    Also as time went on the actual mission requirements changed. I am not sure if the Lancaster started out as a day bomber but it's use as a night bomber changed things compared to the American planes.

    The increases in defensive armament on the American planes ment that while their "defensive rating" would go up their ability to carry a given weight of bombs over a certain distance goes down making them less effective bomb trucks.
     
  11. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
    Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2005
    Messages:
    23,207
    Likes Received:
    790
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Aircraft Maintenance Manager/ Flight Instructor
    Location:
    Colorado, USA
    Its bomb carrying capability and range. The airframe had room to grow and take on all types of electronic equipment as well.
     
  12. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
    Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2005
    Messages:
    23,207
    Likes Received:
    790
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Aircraft Maintenance Manager/ Flight Instructor
    Location:
    Colorado, USA
    #12 FLYBOYJ, Nov 1, 2009
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2009
    Wrong on several counts. The B-29 actually saw combat service in April 44, entered regular service in 1943. The Lancaster entered combat service in 1942. The B-29 could also carry the grand slam as well as tall boys and was capable of a bomb load in excess of 20,000 pounds. The Lanc dropped the "bouncing bomb," the B-29 dropped the atominc bomb and continued to do so in the post war years. It served in Korea against MiGs and the last one was retired from the USAF in 1960. The B-29 was more advanced in MANY areas - defensive fire control system, better general configuration (it had tri-cycle landing gear as opposed to an out dated and more hazardous tail wheel) and the B-29 carried 2 pilots - better cockpit resource management as well as a built in safety factor. It could fly higher and faster than the Lanc and was pressurized.

    BTW - the RAF used 70 B-29s because it didn't have a transcontinental nuclear strike capability during the post war years.

    Again, the B-29 was at least a half a generation ahead of any WW2 heavy bomber.
     
  13. DerAdlerIstGelandet

    DerAdlerIstGelandet Der Crew Chief
    Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2004
    Messages:
    41,771
    Likes Received:
    687
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Occupation:
    A&P - Aircraft Technician
    Location:
    USA/Germany
    The B-29 could carry that 20,000lb the same distance that the Lancaster could carry less of a bomb load. It also could carry that bomb load without being modified.

    The 20,000lb was just the standard load out for the B-29. What was the standard load out for the Lancaster? If I recall it was only 14,000 lb. In order for the Lancaster to carry that 22,000lb bomb it had to be modified. The B-29s range with max bomb load was farther than that of the Lancaster with a minimal bomb load.

    The B-29 as a matter of fact was modified and used to test the 43,600lb T12 bomb. I believe a B-29 was even fitted with two Grand Slam bombs in testing.

    The B-29 could do more than any other bomber.

    Fact remains, the B-29 was the most advanced and capable of all the heavy bombers.
     
  14. Milosh

    Milosh Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2009
    Messages:
    1,919
    Likes Received:
    96
    Trophy Points:
    48
    The B-29 was classed as a very heavy bomber by the USAAF.
     
  15. Timppa

    Timppa Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2007
    Messages:
    402
    Likes Received:
    40
    Trophy Points:
    28
    Location:
    Finland
    #15 Timppa, Nov 1, 2009
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2009
    In RAF service, even the successor of the Lancaster, the Avro Lincoln was replaced by.. the B-29.

    The B-29 was a generation ahead of its competitors. AFAIK it is the only plane that was copied bolt by bolt (by the Russians). The popular story goes that even even the bullet holes were copied as "design features" (although Ii don't believe the Russians were that stupid).
     
  16. Vincenzo

    Vincenzo Active Member

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2007
    Messages:
    2,281
    Likes Received:
    6
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    none
    Location:
    Lazio
    #16 Vincenzo, Nov 1, 2009
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2009
    The first bombing mission of B-29 was in 5th June '44, in april only transfer flying on advanced base in china

    For pre B-29 bombers, Stirling it's the first allied four engined bomber that attacked target since the surrender of France (it used her Farman in '40 campaign)

    p.s. i'm agree with our US friend that the Fortess are virtually a best bomber
     
  17. herman1rg

    herman1rg Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2008
    Messages:
    1,157
    Likes Received:
    72
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Of course the USA's involvement in WW2 lasted form Dec 1941 till Aug 1945 whereas for the UK and it's Allies WW2 lasted from Sep 1939 till Aug 1945. Almost two years longer.
     
  18. syscom3

    syscom3 Pacific Historian

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2005
    Messages:
    12,631
    Likes Received:
    309
    Trophy Points:
    83
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Orange County, CA
    The RAF's contribution to the strategic airwar ended in April 1945. The AAF kept bombing for another 4 months.

    And theres one thing the B29 could do that the Lanc couldnt. Carry an atomic bomb to a target 1600 miles away.
     
  19. herman1rg

    herman1rg Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2008
    Messages:
    1,157
    Likes Received:
    72
    Trophy Points:
    48
    I'm quite sure the RAF was still active in the Far East until VJ day and if a Lancaster had needed to carry an A-bomb I am quite sure that could have easily been achieved.
     
  20. Shortround6

    Shortround6 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2009
    Messages:
    9,778
    Likes Received:
    802
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Occupation:
    retired Firefighter
    Location:
    Central Florida Highlands
    The Lancaster might not have been able to carry it as far or as fast or as high (only the last presents a real problem.)

    The Lancaster might have been able to carry a 10,000lb Atomic bomb about 800 miles from base a bit slower than the B-29. the problem comes in escaping the blast. The B-29s dropped from over 30,000ft and dived away to increese the distance from bomb blast as the bomb fell.

    Perhaps a braking chute on the bomb to allow the Lancaster to get away:)
     
Loading...

Share This Page