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B-24 bombers under construction at Ford Motor Company's Willow Run Factory, circa 1941-1945

Caption   B-24 bombers under construction at Ford Motor Company's Willow Run Factory, circa 1941-1945 ww2dbase
Source    ww2dbaseUnited States Air Force
More on...   
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Added By C. Peter Chen
Added Date 21 Apr 2007

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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:
17 Mar 2009 09:17:13 AM

My research shows photo taken at Consolidated's San Diego plant. The B-24J Model was the largest number built 6,678 being completed by five manuactures. A total of 19,000 B-24's of all models were built. If you parked all the bombers nose to tail they would extend for 245 miles!
2. Commenter identity confirmed BILL says:
16 Jun 2009 07:55:52 AM

From airplanes to jeeps:

During W.W.II 649,000 jeeps were produced the
word jeep comes from the code letters GP the letter P meaning Government and the letter P,
meaning the vehicle had a wheelbase of 80 inches.
Peak production, at the Willys-Overland plant
in Toledo, Ohio was (1) jeep built every 80
3. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
26 Dec 2009 03:04:40 PM

The Willow Run Facility was the largest Aircraft Manufacturing Plant in the World.
Over 40,000 people built one B-24 bomber at
a rate of one per-hour!
4. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
20 Jul 2010 12:11:08 PM

Information on above photograph:

Both wartime plants Consolidated Ft. Worth,
Texas and San Diego, California did bear a
Photo shows the Consolidated-Vultee plant at San Diego, California during the summer of
1944 the bombers on the production line are
B-24J's total number built for this model
was 4,350.

Other companies built the B-24 under license
they were Ford at Willow Run, MI.,Douglas at
Tulsa, OK. and North American at Dallas, TX.

Wartime production of aircraft reached a
rate of one per hour! for a total of 230,000
5. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
5 Aug 2010 03:22:40 PM


Did you know...

Interesting fact about the Willow Run bomber plant, it had a large turn-table along the assembly line where the B-24's would make
a 90 degree turn before final assembly.

The "L" Shaped Building"
Some say the reason for the turn, and the
design of the building, was to avoid having to pay added taxes, by crossing county lines

Another reason was Henry Ford didn't want the building to cross into a Democratic Congressman's District. As I've said before another form of Politics by other means.

Willow Run built an average of 14 B-24's a day. About one every 56 minutes!
In August 1944 (428) were built!
Total production at five locations during
WWII were 18,479.

One of the most famous of all B-24's was the "Lady be Good" that crashed in the Libyan Desert in 1943. All crewmen died, and was not discovered until 1959.

Another less famous B-24, left in India by the USAAF at wars end, she was named the
"All American" and serve from 1948 to 1968 with the Indian Air Force.

488,193 Parts
30,000 Components
24 Major Subassemblies
32,000lbs Empty
Maximum Weight 60,000lbs
Powered by Four Pratt & Whitney R-1830 Radial
Engines of 1,200 hp/each.
Cruise speed 200mph
Top speed 303mph
Service ceiling 32,000ft.
32,000 employees built the B-24. Willow Run
alone, built 8,000.

6. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
5 Aug 2010 03:47:30 PM

Ford was one of thousands of both large
and small manufacturers to tool up for wartime production.
One year after Pearl Harbor, 350,000 people came to Detroit to work in defense plants.

Over 30 Billion dollars worth of Military
Equipment were produced from 1942 to 1945.
Many problems were overcome supply shortages
worker shortage, lack of experience,housing
shortages, but the problems were corrected.

By 1945 Willow Run was building 70% of all
B-24's. They were built in two 9 hour shifts
a day.

Did you know...

The last B-24 built at Willow Run was named
"The Henry Ford"
7. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
17 Nov 2014 08:38:00 AM


The last B-24 was built in September 1945 it was one of the 18,482 built during WWII. 12,000 B-24s
saw service, in 1944 the USAAF had on inventory
6,034 other bombers went to allied forces.

Besides the Willow Run Plant, in Michigan, four other plants built the B-24. In California it was Consolidated its plant was one mile long. Production rate peaked at two (2) B-24s per hour! By 1943 the US was out producing Germany, Japan and Italy. During WWII over 30,000 workers built the B-24 bomber


Consolidated, San Diego, California
Second Consolidated Plant, Fort Worth, Texas
North American Aviation, Dallas, Texas
Ford Motor Co. Willow Run, Michigan
Douglas Aircraft Co. Tulsa, Oklahoma
8. Commenter identity confirmed Bill says:
19 Apr 2015 07:52:37 PM


By mid 1943 43,000 employees turned out 230 B-24s per month, by 1944 production was 650 B-24s per month by the time production ended in 1945 Ford built 8,600 B-24s.
One B-24 was built at a rate of one per hour, other plants built two bombers per hour, willow run built 70% of all B-24s by 1943 the United States was out producing Germany, Japan and Italy together.


My late Father worked in defense plants during WWII Dad taught others how to read blueprints and tested machinery and balanced contra rotating propellers on torpedoes. Dad was exempt from military service people worked 24/7 producing the weapons. My two other late Uncles served in the US Army in Europe.


When my late Father heard of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor he went to the nearest recruiting station the men waiting in line, extended about a mile. Millions of lives would forever be changed
and our world would never be the same.

I thank the editor/ww2db for allowing me to leave
my knowledge about WWII and about my late Father and the millions of others in his generation who answered the call...

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