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Olive-drab painted B-29 bombers, late 1943

Caption   Olive-drab painted B-29 bombers, late 1943 ww2dbase
Source    ww2dbaseUnited States Air Force
More on...   
B-29 Superfortress   Main article  Photos  
Added By C. Peter Chen
Added Date 11 Apr 2007

This photograph has been scaled down; full resolution photograph is available here (2,792 by 2,180 pixels).

Licensing  Public Domain. According to the United States copyright law (United States Code, Title 17, Chapter 1, Section 105), in part, "[c]opyright protection under this title is not available for any work of the United States Government".



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Visitor Submitted Comments

1. Commenter identity confirmed BILL says:
23 Mar 2009 11:43:51 AM

One of three XB-29 test aircraft, the prototype made its first flight on 21 September 1942.
2. Commenter identity confirmed BILL says:
23 Mar 2009 11:52:41 AM

Two aircraft shown above, were used for tests operated by the 58th Bomb Wing.
3. Anonymous says:
11 Jan 2010 07:35:47 PM

So why did they stop painting them?
4. gord says:
9 May 2010 10:20:29 PM

They stopped painying them after 100 were painted olive drab and gray. Those airplanes wre used in combat.There was no reason to paint them anymore the U.S. had achieved air supremacy. But I have been lobbying decal companies for 10 years to make a sheet of olive drab b-29 decals. I can think of a few cool OD B-29s, including Ding How, Lady Boomerang, Monsoon Goon, Old Battler. In fact I've handpainted the Monsoon Goon name onto my 1/48 scale olive drab B-29 . The OD b-29 is pretty impressive.
5. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
22 Jun 2010 06:40:22 PM

The B-29 was Uncle Sam's billion dollar baby it cost $3 billion to develop,that was a lot of money in the 1940's, when a dollar was still worth something. The aircraft cost more than the atomic bomb! production B-29's cost about $500,000 each. The aircraft weight was 105,000 pounds it was the heaviest bomber in the world at that time, and by God it was American! It was powered by four (4) Wright Cyclone Engines rated at 2,200 hp. The later B-29D model was powered by Pratt & Whitney Wasp Engines rated at 3,500 hp each. It operated above 30,000 feet, with a range of 5,830 miles,carried 9,400 gallons of fuel Bomb load was 20,000 pounds. The aircraft was pressurized the crew worked without heavy flight gear. Armament: four remote-controlled power driven turrets,with .50 caliber machine guns plus the tail turret with two .50's and one 20mm cannon. If necessary, one gunner could control all turrets except the tail position from enemy attack. The last B-29 was built in 1946 the total production run was 2,766. The U.S.Air Force started to phase out the B-29 in the mid 50's The last operational B-29 was retired in 1962 Did you know... One airworthy B-29 flies today "FiFi" is part of the Commemorative Air Force that is based in the Great State of Texas, USA. The most famous B-29, the Enola Gay is on display at the Smithsonian Museum's Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center, near Washington Dullas International Airport. The other B-29 is Bock's Car at the U.S.Air Force Museum in Dayton, Ohio USA.
6. Bill says:
22 Jun 2010 09:02:26 PM

More about "FIFI" she was delivered to the USAAF on July 31, 1945. She served with different operational bomb groups during the 40's and into the 1950's. Retired to the Navy's China Lake Weapons Test Center in California, and left parked in the open for 17 years. In 1971 the Confederate Air Force, now known as the WWII Commemorative Air Force made arrangements with the Navy, to restore the B-29. After much needed maintenance on site, and after 9 weeks of work,"FIFI" was ready to make the flight back to Harlingen, Texas. The 1,250 mile flight took 6 hours and 27 minutes, the restoration work continued to bring "FIFI" up to her WWII operational status. "Keep'em Flyin" "FIFI" may be the last flying B-29 left in the world many people have worked, and will continue to work to keep all those WWII aircraft in the air. Together they have preserved the legacy of the World War II Generation. Keep'em Flyin Click You Tube: B-29 "FIFI"
7. Bill says:
23 Jun 2010 06:55:11 AM

Correction for #5 B-29's range: Range listed as 5,830 is not correct,ferry flights 4,100 miles,with maximum raised to 6,000 miles on later models fitted with auxiliary fuel tanks in the bomb bay. Once again, I'm in error, but I've made my corrections. The B-29's range was 3,700 miles, maximum weight 133,500 lbs.,ceiling 33,600 feet maximum speed 357 mph.,cruising speed was 220 mph. Most missions flew with 10,000 or 12,000 lbs. of ordnance, but it depended on the mission. However, 20,000 lbs. of ordnance was the maximum load. "The B-29 was the world's protector Seattle Boeing designed it. Wichita Boeing helped build it. The Army Air Corps flew it. And the world was saved." -Kermit K. Thompson- Boeing Engineering Service Mamager 1936-1945
8. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
23 Jun 2010 07:17:16 AM

When people ask about the Histroy of WWII and if the two atomic bombs were necessary, my answer is simple. "No Pearl Harbor, No Hiroshima or Nagasaki." The United States, would have gone on to more peaceful directions for its people. However, World War II came upon the world, and for the next six years, millions died. It has taken decades to rebuild the world, the next war, will throw mankind back not decades, but centuries and quite possibly never reach our present state of technology again.
9. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
23 Jun 2010 07:04:52 PM

The B-29 carried 10x50 caliber machine guns w/ 1,000 rounds per gun, some crews made modifications with more powerful motors to pull another 1,000 rounds through the feed mechanism, this gave some B-29 gunners a total of 2,000 rounds, kinda makes you feel good,knowing you have a lot of lead to throw out. The tail position had two .50's and a 20mm cannon, and I'm sure the ground crew chief found away to add more 20mm ammo, it gives you a real good feeling, remember more ammo is better. Boeing also designed a cheek blister below the cockpit with one .50 caliber machine gun on each side of the forward fuselage, but it never went into production ships.
10. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
26 Jun 2010 04:02:18 PM

A lot of brave men were lost training in the B-29's and also flying them in the Pacific theater. The B-29 initially had a lot of mechanical problems and it took courage and bravery to keep flying the bomber into combat,until the mechanical problems were corrected by Boeing and the USAAF. Had the U.S. not continued the war against Japan with the B-29, the U.S. would have never prevailed, and it would have continued until another solution could have been found and hundreds of thousands would continue to die. The true heroes of World War II, are the men and women who gave their lives for their country, and did not return home. The World War II Generation is slowly passing their sacrifices,devotion to duty,dedication and courage should never be forgotten. They hoped for a better world to emerge, we should not fail them, they have passed on to us, the torch of Liberty and Freedom.
11. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
26 Jun 2010 08:48:51 PM

I met many Veterans working for the (VA) Dept. of Veterans Affairs one of them, flew the B-29, he showed me his collection of photos. Being interested in aviation and history,I was honored to have been able to see them and listen to his experiences flying that bomber. He told me, to this day he still has dreams flying the B-29. As a Veteran myself,working for the (VA) was the most fullfilling job,and the only job I ever had,that I was ready to get up in the morning for and go to work.
12. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
20 Jul 2010 11:24:50 AM

The B-29 cost about $600,000 each, in 1943 dollars. It took 157,000 manhours to build the first 100 bombers, as the work force became more skillful at building the B-29, the manhours dropped to 17,000 manhours to build the last 100 B-29's. Did you know 40% of the work force at the Boeing Wichita plant was made up of women. About 100 B-29's were being built per month at Boeings four wartime production plants. The B-29 was an advanced aircraft it was put into service fast, before many problems were corrected. Procedures and maintenance had to be worked out. The B-29 had four remote controlled turrets with .50 caliber guns, and a tail position that carried two .50's plus one 20mm cannon w/ 100 rounds, giving the B-29 about 11,500 rounds of ammunition. The weapons, sighing equipment, ammo feeds and fire control computer, increased the weight to 5 tons!
13. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
26 Jul 2010 10:54:41 AM

Did you know... Sending 500 B-29's on one raid over Japan would use 15 million gallons of aviation fuel This is something only the United States and the USAAF could accept towards the ultimate Victory. The B-29 raids cost Japan horribly,its cities and industry destroyed,and the cost in human lives. Put it another way, if the war ended without the Atomic Bomb attacks, and the B-29's left it would have taken the Japanese 5 years to get back to where they were in 1939! By August 1945 even the bare essentials of life,could no longer be produced. Note* These are my opinions alone. They do not reflect the ww2db in anyway.
14. Anonymous says:
22 Sep 2010 02:10:44 PM

While painted in Olive green, did the B-29 ever carry the US insignia with the red border? (Summer 1943.
15. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
8 Dec 2010 08:04:19 AM

I haven't seen any photographs of OD painted B-29s with the red border around the entire marking. This marking, the red border was used from June 1943 to September 1943. During combat the red could be mistaken for the WWII Japanese Red Sun marking. In September 1943,the red border strip was eliminted from the US National Insignia, and replaced with insignia blue. The first Boeing B-29s that rolled off the production in September 1943, were marked with the later style National Insignia white star w/ blue border. The first B-29s went to the 58th Bomb Wing. Best wishes, Bill
16. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
2 May 2011 09:05:33 PM

Continued from Comment #6 WHAT ABOUT FIFI: COME FLY WITH ME, LETS FLY, LETS FLY AWAY... Operated by the Commemorative Air Force FIFI costs about $9,000 an hour to operate, rides are available for nine paying passengers for a 30 minute flight $995.00 up front, and $595.00 in the back. Along for the ride are six crewmen, who scan FIFI's wings and engines for smoke or fire. WELCOME ABOARD: COFFEE, TEA OR FIRE EXTINGUISHER, NO FREQUENT FLYER MILES ACCEPTED HERE, YOUR ON YOUR OWN.. Makes you feel kinda comfortable, knowing six people, or 12 Mk.1 eyeballs are watching to make sure you and they don't crash and burn, are you given a chute, just in case? FIFI is the last B-29 flying, and lets hope she can remain airworthy for years to come.
17. Anonymous says:
6 Jul 2012 08:15:51 AM

B-29 had 12 50 cals. and the 20mm was removed very early into her combat time. Different track than the 50's made it useless to shoot her. Looked scary as hell.

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