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View Full Version : P-51B Production date questions???



faustnik
07-20-2004, 11:36 AM
"The first P-51B (43-12093), or company NA-102, flew on 5 May 1943", The first P-51C (42-102979) took to the air in August 1943".
- source: P-51 Mustang, Robert F. Dorr

This supported by other western sources including AHT.

Some Soviet data shows that P-51Bs existed in 1942. Is this possible? Could Merlin powered P-51s have been supplied by England?
Did the U.K. convert P-51s with Merlins other than the test models?

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faustnik
07-20-2004, 11:36 AM
"The first P-51B (43-12093), or company NA-102, flew on 5 May 1943", The first P-51C (42-102979) took to the air in August 1943".
- source: P-51 Mustang, Robert F. Dorr

This supported by other western sources including AHT.

Some Soviet data shows that P-51Bs existed in 1942. Is this possible? Could Merlin powered P-51s have been supplied by England?
Did the U.K. convert P-51s with Merlins other than the test models?

http://pages.sbcglobal.net/mdegnan/_images/FaustSig
www.7Jg77.com (http://www.7jg77.com) is recruiting
CWoS FB forum. More Cheese, Less Whine. (http://www.acompletewasteofspace.com/forum/viewforum.php?f=31)

3.JG51_Stecher
07-20-2004, 11:57 AM
First flight of XP-51B : 30 November 1942
First flight of P-51B : 5 May 1943
First flight of P-51C : 5 August 1943

There was an order for 400 P-51Bs in August of 1942, even though no Merlin powered Mustang had flown yet. This and/or the prototype's flight might cause confusion that they were around in 1942, but they weren't.

The RAF received 274 P-51Bs and 626 P-51Cs. They were designated as the Mustang III and started combat missions in late February of 1944, the same time American P-51B/Cs started to make their presence felt.

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faustnik
07-20-2004, 12:07 PM
I have absolutely no idea where the '42 date in FB came from? I sent U.S. production data but, was told that the P-51B was produced in '42.

No big deal, just curious. http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/16x16_smiley-happy.gif

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3.JG51_Stecher
07-20-2004, 12:24 PM
A production order in 1942 yes, but from what I can tell, it didn't start until early 1943.

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horseback
07-20-2004, 01:06 PM
Both Rolls-Royce and North American built and tested prototypes of the Merlin Mustang in 1942; actual production models didn't roll off the line in LA until the following May. Once test flown, the production units would be flown to the east coast and mothballed for an Atlantic transit on the first available convoys.

Hap Arnold placed the initial order that was the result of hearing from multiple sources whose forecasts of the Merlin engined Mustang's range and performance meshed with the USAAF's need for a high altitude fighter with range greater than that available from the Thunderbolt (at that time; remember, the Jug hadn't entered combat yet either).

While the Lightning appeared to have something like the desired range and performance, it was not designed for mass production, and was coming off the lines much too slowly for Arnold's liking. The unit cost was a bit high too.

cheers

horseback

"Here's your new Mustangs, boys. You can learn to fly'em on the way to the target. Cheers!" -LTCOL Don Blakeslee, 4th FG CO, February 27th, 1944