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Posted: 8/21/2017 8:30:13 PM EST
North American A-36 Apache

"The North American A-36 Apache was the ground-attack/dive bomber version of
the North American P-51 Mustang, from which it could be distinguished
by the presence of rectangular, slatted dive brakes above and below the
wings. A total of 500 A-36 dive bombers served in North Africa, the
Mediterranean, Italy and the China-Burma-India theater during World War
II before being withdrawn from operational use in 1944."

"No funds were available for new fighter contracts in fiscal year 1942, but General Oliver P. Echols and Fighter Project Officer Benjamin S. Kelsey[url=https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_American_A-36_Apache#cite_note-GML3-4][4][/url] wanted to ensure that the P-51 remained in production.[url=https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_American_A-36_Apache#cite_note-5][5][/url]"

"Since appropriations were available for an attack aircraft, Echols specified modifications to the P-51 to turn it into a dive bomber. The
contract for 500 A-36A aircraft fitted with bomb racks, dive brakes, and
heavier-duty wing, was signed by Kelsey on 16 April 1942,[url=https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_American_A-36_Apache#cite_note-Gruenhagen_p._61.-6][6][/url] even before the first flight of the first production P-51 in May 1942."

Full wiki page
Link Posted: 8/21/2017 8:31:53 PM EST
Cool!
Link Posted: 8/21/2017 8:32:58 PM EST
Allison engine.

Merlin is best engine.
Link Posted: 8/21/2017 8:37:20 PM EST
Link Posted: 8/21/2017 8:37:26 PM EST
Dive bomber version of the early P51s. They ended up wiring down the air-brakes...read that somewhere.
Link Posted: 8/21/2017 8:38:11 PM EST
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Great pic!
Link Posted: 8/21/2017 8:44:06 PM EST
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Originally Posted By Blake:
Allison engine.

Merlin is best engine.
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Yeah, but for attack / dive bombing the Allison probably did ok.
Link Posted: 8/21/2017 8:52:50 PM EST
[Last Edit: 8/21/2017 8:53:54 PM EST by Hellbent_4]
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Originally Posted By jblomenberg16:


Yeah, but for attack / dive bombing the Allison probably did ok.
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The That model Allison was great under 10K. Above that it was kind of meh. Not good for a dog fighter.
Link Posted: 8/21/2017 8:54:48 PM EST
Link Posted: 8/21/2017 9:00:14 PM EST
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Originally Posted By Blake:
Allison engine.

Merlin is best engine.
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The Museum of Aviation at Robins AFB has both but the P-51H and P-51D.








Here is the Packard made engine on the P-51D:

Link Posted: 8/21/2017 9:04:43 PM EST
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Originally Posted By AeroE:


How this idea was born, that the A-36 saved the P-51 program, is bizarre. Rolls Royce and RJ Mitchell saved the program. The A-36 was a dead end without a better engine, and Rolls was not about to send engines to the US at that time.
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My thought as well. P-51 was birthed by, confirmed by, and perfected by the British and NAA without any particular help from the A-36 programme. I'd add Ronnie Harker to the two names above. In fact, the whole thing was much a case of the RAF ramming the P-51 down the USAAF's throat as anything else.
Link Posted: 8/21/2017 9:06:32 PM EST
[Last Edit: 8/21/2017 9:13:40 PM EST by Hellbent_4]
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Originally Posted By AeroE:


The service ceiling was so limited the airplane was damn near useless.

How this idea was born, that the A-36 saved the P-51 program, is bizarre. Rolls Royce and RJ Mitchell saved the program. The A-36 was a dead end without a better engine, and Rolls was not about to send engines to the US at that time.
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The design was going to be shelved without funds.  The A-36 program kept the production line open. The Merlin 61 engine brought the power up from 1200hp to 1620hp.
Link Posted: 8/21/2017 9:09:25 PM EST
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Originally Posted By AeroE:
The service ceiling was so limited the airplane was damn near useless.

How this idea was born, that the A-36 saved the P-51 program, is bizarre. Rolls Royce and RJ Mitchell saved the program. The A-36 was a dead end without a better engine, and Rolls was not about to send engines to the US at that time.
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Originally Posted By AeroE:
Originally Posted By jblomenberg16:


Yeah, but for attack / dive bombing the Allison probably did ok.
The service ceiling was so limited the airplane was damn near useless.

How this idea was born, that the A-36 saved the P-51 program, is bizarre. Rolls Royce and RJ Mitchell saved the program. The A-36 was a dead end without a better engine, and Rolls was not about to send engines to the US at that time.
This!
Link Posted: 8/21/2017 9:13:15 PM EST
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Originally Posted By BuckMKII:
The Museum of Aviation at Robins AFB has both but the P-51H and P-51D.
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Are you stationed there? I was 5th Mob '93-'96. Looks like they've added alot to the museum since then. Thanks for the pics.
Link Posted: 8/21/2017 9:19:10 PM EST
If you read the book 'Brave men", By Ernie Pyle, and by the way, you're an American Pinko commie fag if you don't, you can learn about the time he spent with an A-36 group in Italy.
Link Posted: 8/21/2017 9:22:37 PM EST
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Originally Posted By Thermionix:


Are you stationed there? I was 5th Mob '93-'96. Looks like they've added alot to the museum since then. Thanks for the pics.
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Never stationed at Robins I was at RAF Alconbury UK and Minot. I live within driving distance to the base though. Robins has the second largest museum behind Wright Pat.
Link Posted: 8/21/2017 9:59:57 PM EST
Ya, ok, A-36 was cool...but P-47 did it better.
And Zemkes Wolfpack repeatedly proved that it was just as good a fighter.
And it was tougher.
And it had heavier firepower.
And the N model could outrange the 51.
And the M model was faster.

Sorry but I've never understood the P-51 love fest.
No R-2800, no care.
Link Posted: 8/22/2017 5:18:15 AM EST
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Originally Posted By BuckMKII:


Never stationed at Robins I was at RAF Alconbury UK and Minot. I live within driving distance to the base though. Robins has the second largest museum behind Wright Pat.
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Wow, it was pretty small when I was there. Maybe even started when I was there, not sure. They had an SR-71 out front, for a while it had ropes around it. Seems I recall they took the ropes down. Fuzzy memories.

I live within driving distance of it too, but Wright Pat is closer. I need to get back up there someday.
Link Posted: 8/22/2017 5:21:24 AM EST
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Originally Posted By Hellbent_4:
The design was going to be shelved without funds.  The A-36 program kept the production line open. The Merlin 61 engine brought the power up from 1200hp to 1620hp.
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Originally Posted By Hellbent_4:
Originally Posted By AeroE:


The service ceiling was so limited the airplane was damn near useless.

How this idea was born, that the A-36 saved the P-51 program, is bizarre. Rolls Royce and RJ Mitchell saved the program. The A-36 was a dead end without a better engine, and Rolls was not about to send engines to the US at that time.
The design was going to be shelved without funds.  The A-36 program kept the production line open. The Merlin 61 engine brought the power up from 1200hp to 1620hp.
The production line was in no danger of being closed due to RAF orders for Mustang Is and IIs (even if many of the planes they ordered did get seized by the US.)
Link Posted: 8/22/2017 5:27:30 AM EST
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Originally Posted By Grendelshooter:
Ya, ok, A-36 was cool...but P-47 did it better.
And Zemkes Wolfpack repeatedly proved that it was just as good a fighter.
And it was tougher.
And it had heavier firepower.
And the N model could outrange the 51.
And the M model was faster.

Sorry but I've never understood the P-51 love fest.
No R-2800, no care.
View Quote
Although the Mustang is beautiful, I do share your opinion that the
later versions of the P-47 were better aircraft.

I would much rather have run around ETO or PTO in the Thunderbolt.
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