Number of Days to build a B-17

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by Micdrow, Aug 16, 2008.

  1. Micdrow

    Micdrow “Archive”
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    Pop quiz, how many days to build a B-17 during WWII. You may be surprised, I know I was. Answer at bottom of picture.
     

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  2. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    Interesting Paul - I know several years ago Sys and I had a running debut about ease of production and how many B-24s could be built in a day. This is obviously from the Boeing Plant, throw Vega (Lockheed) and Douglas in there and I'm certain that number increases drastically.

    Not they talk about the B-17B - by the time the G was bering built?????
     
  3. syscom3

    syscom3 Pacific Historian

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    Several years ago? Try two!

    That production number in the ad was for the prewar aircraft "B" models. Hardly representative of the late 1944 production runs for the "G" models.

    In the pic, note the rudder tail colors. And what are those two beastly looking fuselages in the upper left?
     
  4. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    Stratocruisers
     
  5. kool kitty89

    kool kitty89 Well-Known Member

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  6. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    Mmmmmmm......Stratocruiser.....drrroool..!
     
  7. Micdrow

    Micdrow “Archive”
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    Still its amazing, now of days with all the modern technology it takes years to restore a B-17. Back then it took just days before one was in the air.
     
  8. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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    Makes you think, right?
     
  9. Micdrow

    Micdrow “Archive”
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    Yes it does, amazing how things work.
     
  10. Soundbreaker Welch?

    Soundbreaker Welch? Active Member

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    If everybody just pitched in, we could still do it!


    (If we had the money.) **cough, cough!**
     
  11. seesul

    seesul Active Member

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    Amazing!
    Would like to know how many people worked on 1 B-17?
     
  12. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    It depended....

    By the time aircraft like the B-17 were being built, production techniques were adopted that are still being used today. Aircraft are built in "segments" subassemblies that come together on a final assembly line. Within the sub assembly construction you may have 4 or 5 people building up a wing or fuselage section which is built up in an assembly jig. Many times a segment of the aircraft may be built at a subcontractor as well. Anyway as it all comes together you'll have people installing electrical wiring, hydraulics and other systems, again 4 or 5 at a time. When the aircraft gets to final assembly you may have 10 or more people installing interior furnishing like seats, radios, lights and then doing functional tests of the electrical and hydraulic systems so when the engines are fired up for the first time its assured there will be no problems. Then you have folks out on the flight line doing final checks prior to the first flight.

    At any given time there could be as many as 10 people on the plane but in essence it would not surprise me if there are at least 100 people physically assembling the aircraft during the entire process.
     
  13. twoeagles

    twoeagles Member

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    Another way to look at the production: deliveries started (slowly) in April, 1938. I don't know when production ceased, but just taking VJ day on 14 August, 1945, that's 2,687 days. A total of 12,731 (give or
    take) B-17's were built. That means 4.7 aircraft per day, 7 days a week.
    And the B-24 even surpassed this! (and multiply that by 4 to get the engines that had to match airframes!)
     
  14. syscom3

    syscom3 Pacific Historian

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    At the peak of production, I wouldnt be too far off the mark in saying a B17 was built every 3 hours at any given production plant.

    But the sum total "man hours" to build it was still in the 10's of thousands.
     
  15. Micdrow

    Micdrow “Archive”
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  16. seesul

    seesul Active Member

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    O.K., thank you for the quick answer Joe!
     
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