Other air forces/services go with the equivalent of A-36 Apache?

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The big, decisive moment for the SBDs was when the Japanese fighters were landed (aircraft carriered?), refuelling after massacring VT-8.

While it's true that the CAP was preoccupied, it was still a hot environment, and there were some fighters chasing the SBDs down. And while the attacks on 4 Jun 42 were uncoordinated, luck put the CAP in a hard spot -- which would also obtain from a truly coordinated attack as on the Shoho.

IIRC, the SBD is one of the few bomber-types to be credited with a positive fighter-kill ratio, too; though how accurate that is is definitely open to debate.

The point is that the qualifier "early in the war" isn't entirely accurate, and that's not limited to American DBs, either. I'm not saying there's no truth to it, but that even in contested attacks they could and did produce good results.

And many USN scout/DB pilots later in the war still preferred the SBD over the SB2C.
 
In the Pacific, if you need to fly an American aircraft to bomb something, what would you prefer, a Curtis SB2C Helldiver, or an F4U Corsair?
As the air group commander, that's going to depend on what is being targeted, what is available for the raid, and what defenses are to be expected. As a pilot, I'd want which one gives me a better chance to get back intact, which will be affected by how effective the aircraft is in putting useful ordnance on target -- I'd likely have a better chance of survival if I don't have to attack the same target multiple times to destroy it. For an armored ship, that may be the Helldiver. For troops on the ground, a dispersed, relatively unprotected target, that may be the Corsair. I don't think there's a single correct answer, in either theatre, but it should also be noted that the German surface fleet was not a significant threat from about mid-1943, while the IJN was dangerous well into 1945.
 
An SB2C would hold 330 gallon of fuel inside in protected tanks.
It would hold a 1000lb bomb inside the bomb bay. It would even hold a 1600lb AP bomb inside the bomb bay. with the same amount of fuel.

If you can bomb using a shorter range then maybe the fighter bomber works for you ?

SBDs could carry a 1000lb bomb using a 1000-1200hp engine and fly (slowly) over 1000 miles.
Want to remind me how far a F2M Wildcat could carry even a pair of 100lb bombs?

When the fighters started getting 2000hp radial engines they could take over a lot of the dive bomber roles.
How far will the A-36 lug a pair of 500lb bombs with it's 180 gallon fuel tanks?
 
How far will the A-36 lug a pair of 500lb bombs with it's 180 gallon fuel tanks?

Not too shabby?

rng36.jpg
 
How far will the A-36 lug a pair of 500lb bombs with it's 180 gallon fuel tanks?
Who cares?

If I support you with a dive bomber that operates over a 1000mile radius, I will be supporting you once a day, and perhaps once every second day. You want me based just out of the enemy's artillery range so that I can fly multiple missions per day. The extra fuel is extra weight, and more stuff to blow up when somebody hits me.

The 1000mile range is for Mustangs escorting strategic bombers.
 
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It maters if you are buying close support Army planes or if you are buying Navy airplanes.
It also mattered in the Pacific for the Marines and for the Army.

There is a huge difference in straight line range and in combat radius.
The SBD-5 was supposed to have a "range" of 1115 miles at 139mph with a 1000lb bomb (internal fuel)
They figured the combat radius was 240 miles once you figured in forming up time, climb to 15,000ft, fly out to target at 15,000ft, combat (10 minutes) fly back at only 1500ft at 170 kts and one hour to find your carrier and wait your turn for landing. And some other stuff.

Tailor the plane too close to the "just out of artillery range" idea and you have planes that get lost to the enemy over running your airfields, or you have planes evacuating (leaving ground crew behind if done too late) and trying to relocate.
That assumes you actually have suitable real-estate to put the airplanes on and not large stretches of water. Or mountain ranges like the Owen Stanley range.

Is quite possible to fly a short range mission with a long range aircraft. It doesn't work the other way around.
 
Who cares?

If I support you with a dive bomber that operates over a 1000mile radius, I will be supporting you once a day, and perhaps once every second day. You want me based just out of the enemies artillery range so that I can fly multiple missions per day. The extra fuel is extra weight, and more stuff to blow up when somebody hits me.

The 1000mile range is for Mustangs escorting strategic bombers.
It would be folly to stage a base "just out of artillery range".

Foreward operating bases had more than just a wide space and a few aircraft here and there.
They had to be an established location out of range of enemy infantry/armor attack while at the same time, accessible to logistics.

The surprise Soviet raid on the Luftwaffe's airfield at Tatsinskaya by T-34s of the 24th Tank Corps is a prime example of what can happen if your field is too close to the front.

In Italy, the A-36 had to fly some distances as they were hitting German positions to the north, often times in mountain passes. It's range of 750 miles (without drop-tanks) was essential in many cases.
 
I would also note that there was a difference between the "just out of artillery range" close support aircraft and a lot of the high performance fighter bombers and/or candidates for this dive bomber concept.

The A-36 at 10,000bs needed 2250ft for take off 0 wind on a hard surface runway. that is at 32 degrees F. So at 92 degrees F you need 2925ft, to clear the wheels and 4,095 feet to clear the usual 50ft obstacle. If you have a 20mph head wind you can get the take off down to about 2800ft including obstacle.
P-47 is worse ;)
Typhoon needs about 2200-2250ft to 50ft with a pair of 500lb bombs but doesn't give the temperature. The Typhoon needs another 400ft to land (at light weight)

There may well be a role for the single seat, high performance dive bomber.
Flying out of Feilds 20-40 miles behind the range may not be it.

After D-Day a British infantry division had 72 40mm Bofors guns attached to it.
In 1940 they had none, they had no 20mm guns either. They had some 3in AA guns and Bren guns on high angle mounts.

Trying to dive bomb British infantry units in northern France in the Summer/Fall of 1944 was not a long term career even without the RAF.
 
How far will the A-36 lug a pair of 500lb bombs with it's 180 gallon fuel tanks?

According to the table on page 599 of America's Hundred Thousand, the combat radius at 10,000 feet for a P-51 with 184 gallons of internal fuel and carrying two 500-lb bombs was 175 miles. I would expect the A-36 radius wouldn't be that much different.

ETA: Note that the cruise charts in various Pilot Flight Operating Instruction manuals show the drag caused by a 500-lb bomb was the same as that caused by a 75-gallon drop tank.
 
Sometime ago was reading an interview with some WWII A36 pilots, to a man they called the aircraft the "Apache", the article included a photo of one of their aircraft which had the word "Invader" in stylised script on the nose.
 
According to the table on page 599 of America's Hundred Thousand, the combat radius at 10,000 feet for a P-51 with 184 gallons of internal fuel and carrying two 500-lb bombs was 175 miles. I would expect the A-36 radius wouldn't be that much different.

ETA: Note that the cruise charts in various Pilot Flight Operating Instruction manuals show the drag caused by a 500-lb bomb was the same as that caused by a 75-gallon drop tank.

The AHT data is with combat included (15 min at mil power, 5 min at WER power), and on fast cruise. All what consumes a lot of gas. We will unlikely want from our dive bombers to not just bomb stuff, but also to engage in 20 min of combat, all while cruising on more aggresive settings?
 
While the standard was the same 210IAS as the escort mission 210IAS is about 252mpn true.
Chart for A-36 clean shows 37-38 gallon at 205IAS for either 9000 ft or 12,000ft.
I don't have the chart showing bombs, the chart for 150 gallon ferry tanks obviously is much higher.
WEP burned about 170 gallons a minute (1500hp) but was only available at 2500ft (?) and military power burned 155 gallons a minute.
Range/radius for this low altitude engine varied considerably with altitude/speed.
 
While the standard was the same 210IAS as the escort mission 210IAS is about 252mpn true.
Chart for A-36 clean shows 37-38 gallon at 205IAS for either 9000 ft or 12,000ft.
I don't have the chart showing bombs, the chart for 150 gallon ferry tanks obviously is much higher.
WEP burned about 170 gallons a minute (1500hp) but was only available at 2500ft (?) and military power burned 155 gallons a minute.
Range/radius for this low altitude engine varied considerably with altitude/speed.
FWIW:
rng36-2.jpg
 
The AHT data is with combat included (15 min at mil power, 5 min at WER power), and on fast cruise. All what consumes a lot of gas. We will unlikely want from our dive bombers to not just bomb stuff, but also to engage in 20 min of combat, all while cruising on more aggresive settings?

Would you want to cruise slowly at a lower altitude in a combat zone?
 
If you look at the NMUSAF website it says that "Apache" and "Invader" were also nicknames given to the A-36
Forgive me for repeating myself if I've already said this --- the USAF Museum, upon being contacted by yours truly (I presented documents from NAA and the USAAF & US Govt to them a year earlier) posted the new and correct sign that says, "A-36A Mustang") . It the commentary or narrative, whatEVER it's called, below the Name and Designation in large lettering, explains that it also had the nickname of "Apache" and "Invader." I settled for that wording, but had they let ME write it, I would've said that many years AFTER WWII, the "Apache" name was used by a writer who, pardon my "judgment" here, did not know what they were talking about. They confused the September, 1941 magazine advertising (see below)featured artwork that showed a diving aircraft and it says "Apache." Well, the aircraft depicted was clearly NOT an A-36 because the A-36 didn't even have a completed contract until August, 1942 and did NOT begin production until September, 1942. "Apache" was a sort of "house name" at NAA and applied to the two XP-51s (the plane depicted in this ad) and to the NA-91 aircraft that were designated "P-51" (no letter suffix) ... that's the Mustang-series aircraft with the two YUUUUGE 20 mm cannons protruding out of the wing's leading edge. On July 13, 1942, the "Mustang" name was officially given to any NAA aircraft that was of the P-51 fighter-type of aircraft.

SOoooo....the name "Mustang" was applied to the whole series or "family" BEFORE the A-36 contract was signed and certainly before the first one was built.

I'm attaching a photo of me, my A-36A Mustang and my sign at the National Museum of the U S Air Force, taken in October, 2018, a month after it was first posted. I'm attaching a closeup of the sign for everyone to read. The NMUSAF took a few months to get their website corrected, but it's been fixed now for around 3 years.

I'm also attaching a copy of a page from that September, 1941 Magazine (page 175) and the cover of the magazine from which it came.
 

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