Why wasn't the P47 used as a photo-recon aircraft?

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by pinsog, Sep 30, 2012.

  1. pinsog

    pinsog Member

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    1. It was stable
    2. Pleasant to fly with a roomy cockpit and quiet engine
    3. It was VERY FAST at altitude even when fully armed. Strip out the guns, ammo and some of the armor plate, put fuel tanks in the wings for range
    and I think it would have made an incredible photo-recon aircraft.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. wuzak

    wuzak Well-Known Member

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    There was a whopping great big turbo right where you'd want to put the cameras....
     
  3. pinsog

    pinsog Member

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    Ahhhhh. Anywhere else the camera could have been mounted?
     
  4. wuzak

    wuzak Well-Known Member

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    Well, the F-5 had the cameras in the nose....not an option with the P-47.
    The PR Mosquitoes had the cameras in the bomb bay/rear fuselage. P-47 doesn't have bomb bay.
    The PR Spitfires and Mustangs had them in the rear fuselage. Not an option for the P-47 because of ducting, turbocharger and intercooler.

    I suppose they could be carried in underwing pods. But they would be big pods, and would cut performance significantly.
     
  5. Wildcat

    Wildcat Well-Known Member

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    Or in a modified belly tank ala RAAF Kittyhawks, though again you are decreasing range.
     
  6. drgondog

    drgondog Well-Known Member

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    Range was the primary reason. The rest of the reasons cited above were also true.
     
  7. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    And of course, why? With Mosquitos, P-51s and Spits available to the RAF, and the same plus Lightning F-5s available to the USAAF, why take combat aircraft out of service to convert to another, shorter range PR aircraft?
     
  8. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    This is interesting regarding the P-47's predecessor...

    (from Wiki)

    "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"
     
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