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Old 05-03-2010, 03:57 AM   #1
copeab's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: near Houston
Default [WWII] A-26 Invader attack bomber (USA)

Douglas A-26 Invader attack bomber
Copyright 2010 by Brandon Cope

The A-26 was the successor to the A-20 Havoc (p.W:MP105) but due to delays did not enter service until the fall of 1944. First flying in the summer of 1942, in many ways it was an evolutionary progression of the A-20: larger, faster and with a greater bomb load. They saw only limited use in the Pacific (the pilot's view was considered too restricted for ground attacks and the earlier A-20 was preferred). The Invader was primarily used in Europe, but more as a level bomber than ground attack plane. With the optional wing gun pods added and the dorsal turret locked forward, as many as eighteen .50-cal MGs could be directed at a target.

After WWII when the United States Army Air Force became the United States Air Force, they dropped the “A-” (Attack) designation and the Invader became the B-26 (fortunately, the Martin B-26 Marauder was out of service by then, but this designation change has led to some confusion since). The Invader served in the Korean War and into the early 1960's. At this time, around 40 airframes were refurbished and named the B-26K. For political reasons, however they were renamed (with more confusion) to the A-26A. Some remained in US reserve service into the early 70's and Columbia didn't retire theirs until 1980. France used them in Indochina in the 1950's, Portugal and Biafra in Africa, Indonesia against rebels into the mid-70's, and some were even used in the failed Bay of Pigs Invasion. A few were either acquired by or through the CIA. About 2,550 were built, 1,350 being the -B model. Some 300, stripped of military equipment, found civilian service after the war, mostly as either executive transports or water bombers (fighting forest fires).

Crew consists of a pilot, navigator (also serving as machinegun loader in the -B model and bombardier in the -C version) and gunner/radio operator. The gunner operated two remote controlled turrets, one located dorsally with full rotation and the other ventrally firing only into the rear. The A-26B uses 149 gallons of aviation fuel per hour at routine usage.

Subassemblies: Heavy Fighter-Bomber chassis +3, Heavy Fighter-Bomber Wings +3, two Small AFV engine pods +2, full rotation Mini Weapon Turret +0, three retractable wheels +1.
Powertrain: 2x1,492-kW aerial HP gasoline engine [Pods:F] with 2x1,492-kW prop and 1,290-gallon self-sealing fuel tanks [Wings and Body].
Occupancy: 3 CS Cargo: 11.5 Body

All: 2/3
Pilot/Gunner: 0/+30 BU
Navigator: 0/+30 FU

8xLong Aircraft HMGs/M-2 [Body:F] (300 each).
2xLong Aircraft HMGs/M-2 [Tur:F] (300 each).
2xLong Aircraft HMGs/M-2 [Body:B] (300 each).
8x500-lb bombs [Body:U]
4x500-lb bombs [Wings:U]

Body: Medium radio receiver and transmitter, navigation instruments, autopilot, IFF, 4,000-lb bomb bay. Wings: 1.00-'b hardpoint each

Size: 50'x70'x18'
Payload: 7.5 tons
Lwt: 17.5 tons
Volume: 640
Maint.: 19 hours
Price: $107,000

HT: 8
HP: 525 [body], 450 [each wing],*150 [each pod], 50 [each wheel]

aSpeed: 355
aAccel: 5
aDecel: 19
aMR: 4.5
aSR: 2
Stall: 108

Design Notes
Design speed was 351 mph. The historical speed has been used, as well as the actual wing area (540 square feet). Loaded weight was decreased by 2.2%.

Since the design was slightly overweight and the ventral turret had a restricted arc of fire, it was built as a hull mount.

Some aircraft only carried six HMGs in the nose. Some carried additional weapons under the outer wings – eight .50-cal Mgs in four pods or eight 127mm rockets.

The original A-26A was a proposed night fighter, much like the P-70 variant of the A-20. It would have mounted radar in the nose and a pack of four 20mm cannons in a tray under the fuselage. None were built.

The A-26C was a slightly more conventional bomber version, with a glazed nose and a bombardier position in the new nose and forward MG total reduced to two. 1,100 built.

The B-26K was the initial designation of the 1960's A-26A. It could reach 365 mph with new engines and was fitted with streamlined wingtip fuel tanks. It could carry up to 8,000 lbs of bombs (4,000 internal and 4,000 underwing). Some fitted 20mm cannons in the nose (in place of some or all HMGs).
A generous and sadistic GM,
Brandon Cope

GURPS 3e stuff:

Last edited by copeab; 05-11-2010 at 11:26 AM.
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aircraft, bomber, korean war, vietnam, wwii

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