Aces Flying High. Джинсы convair

convair 880 990 Restoration is the OFFICIAL web site of the Convair models 880 (CV880) &  990 (CV990) series commercial aircraft. This website was developed to help preserve the history of the last few surviving Convair Jet Liners left in the world.  Please take a moment and view each page.
Currently there are just a hand full of the model 880s and 990s remaining in the world. Where are they now? Below is a list of the fully intact airframes and the cockpit sections that are in storage facilities or on display around the world.

If you have information and or photos  you would like to share with us,  please drop us an email.

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Complete aircraft - CV880 Cockpit / fuselage section - CV880
Convair 880, cn 35, N815AJ  (Storage) Convair 880, cn 01, N880AJ  (Display)
Convair 880, cn 38, N880EP  (Display) Convair 880, cn 03, N801AJ  (Display)
Convair 880, cn 58, N88CH  (Conv.- Home) Convair 880, cn 13, N807AJ (Storage)
Convair 880, cn 23, N817TW  (Storage)
Complete aircraft - CV990 Cockpit / fuselage section - CV990
Convair 990, cn 02, N990AB  (Storage) Convair 990, cn 05, N990AC (Storage)
Convair 990, cn 12, HB-ICC  (Display) Convair 990, cn 24, N8357C (Storage/Scrapped)
Convair 990, cn 29, N810NA  (Display)
Convair 990, cn 30, EC-BZO  (Restoration)

Convair 880

The Convair 880 was an American narrow-body jet airliner produced by the Convair division of General Dynamics It was designed to compete with the Boeing 707 and Douglas DC-8 by being smaller and faster, a niche that failed to create demand When it was first introduced, some aviation circles claimed that at 615 mph 990 km/h, it was the fastest jet transport in the world1 Only 65 Convair 880s were produced over the lifetime of the production run from 1959 to 1962, and General Dynamics eventually withdrew from the airliner market after considering the 880 project a failure The Convair 990 was a stretched and faster variant of the 880


  • 1 Design and development
  • 2 Operational history
  • 3 Operators
    • 31 Civil operators
    • 32 Military operators
  • 4 Accidents and incidents
  • 5 Surviving aircraft
  • 6 Specifications 880 Model 22 and 22-M
  • 7 See also
  • 8 References
  • 9 External links

Design and developmentedit

Convair began development of a medium-range commercial jet in April 1956, to compete with announced products from Boeing and Douglas Initially the design was called the Skylark, but the name was later changed to the Golden Arrow, then Convair 600 and then finally the 880, both numbers referring to its top speed of 600 mph 970 km/h or 880 ft/s 268 m/s It was powered by General Electric CJ-805-3 turbojets, a civilian version of the J79 which powered the Lockheed F-104 Starfighter, McDonnell Douglas F-4 Phantom,2 and Convair B-58 Hustler

The first example of the initial production version, the Model 22, made its maiden flight on January 27, 19593 No prototype was built After production started, the Federal Aviation Administration mandated additional instrumentation, which Convair added by placing a "raceway" hump on the top of the fuselage, rather than ripping apart the interiors over the wing area The final assembly of the 880 and 990 took place at the Convair facilities in San Diego, California4

The airliner never became widely used and the production line shut down after only three years The 880's five-abreast seating made it unattractive to airlines, while Boeing was able to outcompete it with the Boeing 720, which could be sold much more cheaply, as it was a minimal modification of the existing 707 In addition, the General Electric engines had a higher specific fuel consumption than the Boeing's Pratt & Whitney JT3Cs

General Dynamics lost around $185 million over the lifetime of the project, although some sources estimate much higher losses The losses incurred in the Convair 880/990 are generally thought to be the largest losses incurred by a corporation up to that time The aircraft were involved in 17 accidents and five hijackings

A modified version of the basic 880 was the "-M" version which incorporated four leading-edge slats per wing, Krueger leading-edge flaps between the fuselage and inboard engines, power-boosted rudder, added engine thrust, increased fuel capacity, stronger landing gear, greater adjustment to seating pitch, and a simpler overhead compartment arrangement5

A more major modification to the 880 became the Convair 990, produced in parallel with the 880-M between 1961 and 1963 Swissair named theirs Coronado, after an island off the San Diego coast and where the first 990 landed, despite Convair's flying boat with that name6

Operational historyedit

Trans World Airlines was the major operator of the Convair 880 One of their aircraft departs from Chicago O'Hare on a scheduled service in April 1971

The design entered service with Delta Air Lines in May 1960, slightly modified as the 880-22m, having newer version 805-3B engines The 880s were flown by Cathay Pacific, Delta, Japan, Northeast, Swissair, TWA, and VIASA

As they left commercial service, many 880s were bought by American Jet Industries for various uses One example was converted to freighter use in 1974, and flew until 1982 with various companies Another was used to train FAA flight examiners until it was destroyed by a minor explosion in the cargo hold in 1995 Most of the remaining examples were scrapped by 2000

Delta Air Lines operated 17 Convair 880s between early 1960 and early 1974

The United States Navy acquired one 880-M in 1980, modifying it as an in-flight tanker It had been purchased new from Convair by the FAA, and used for 18 years7 Unofficially designated UC-880, it was assigned to the Naval Air Test Center at NAS Patuxent River, Maryland, and employed in Tomahawk Cruise Missile testing and aircraft refueling procedures8 Convair designed and manufactured the Tomahawk and Advanced Tomahawk Cruise Missile in San Diego where the 880 and 990 were produced The sole UC-880 was damaged in a cargo hold explosive decompression test at NAS Patuxent River, Maryland, in 19959 The aircraft managed to remain theoretically controllable via backup systems unique to the 880 and 99010


One of the first 880s, in the factory gold, white, and black scheme The Convair UC-880 aircraft refuels an F-14D Tomcat The flight deck of a new Convair 880 A UC-880 assigned to Naval Air Test Center, Patuxent River, employed in Tomahawk cruise missile testing and refueling aircraft procedures

Civil operatorsedit

  • Air Viking leased
  • Airtrust Singapore leased
  • Alaska Airlines
  • American Jet Industries
  • Cathay Pacific ♠
  • Civil Air Transport ♠
  • Delta Air Lines ♠
  • Elvis Presley Enterprises
  • Fair Air
  • Federal Aviation Authority ♠
  • Four Winds Inc
  • Freelandia Travel Club
  • Hughes Tool Company ♠
  • Inair Panama leased
  • Indy Air
  • Japan Air Lines ♠
  • Japan Domestic Airlines
  • LatinCarga
  • Monarch Aviation leased
  • Northeast
  • Orient Pacific Airways
  • SERCA Costa Rica
  • Trans World Airlines ♠
  • Swissair ♠
  • VIASA ♠

♠ = original operators

Military operatorsedit

 United States
  • United States Navy - one Convair UC-880 testbed/air refuelling tanker

Accidents and incidentsedit

  • On May 23, 1960, Delta Air Lines Flight 1903, a CV-880-22-1 N8804E, crashed on takeoff at Atlanta Municipal Airport now Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, resulting in the loss of all four crew members This flight was to be a training sortie for two Delta captains who were being type-rated on the 880 At rotation, the aircraft pitched nose up, rolled left, and then back more steeply to the right, at which time it struck the ground, broke apart, and was consumed by a fire11
  • On August 26, 1966, a Japan Air Lines CV-880-22M-3 JA8030 crashed on takeoff from Haneda Airport during a training flight, killing all five crew members When the nose lifted up, the aircraft yawed to the left, for reasons unknown The number one engine struck the runway and the aircraft left the runway and the nose went back down All four engines separated, as well as the nose and left main gear and the aircraft caught fire The aircraft was leased from Japan Domestic Airlines12
  • On November 5, 1967, Cathay Pacific Flight 033, a CV-880-22M-3 VR-HFX overran the runway on takeoff from Kai Tak International Airport following a loss of control after the right nosewheel blew, killing one of 127 on board13
  • On November 20, 1967, TWA Flight 128 crashed on approach to Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport Seventy people were killed and 12 survived14
  • On March 19, 1969, a man hijacked Delta Air Lines Flight 918, a CV-880, from Dallas to Cuba, but ended up in New Orleans Charges were dismissed due to insanity15
  • On June 24, 1969, Japan Air Lines Flight 90, a CV-880-22M-3 JA8028, Kikyo, crashed on takeoff from Grant County Airport, killing three of the five crew members The flight was to simulate a takeoff with one engine out Power was reduced to the number four engine during takeoff, but the aircraft continued to yaw to the right until the number four engine struck the runway The aircraft slid off the runway and caught fire16
  • On April 17, 1972, Delta Air Lines Flight 952, a CV-880-22-2 N8802E, was hijacked by a man who demanded money; the aircraft landed at Chicago where the hijacker surrendered17
  • On June 15, 1972, a bomb exploded on board Cathay Pacific Flight 700Z over Pleiku, South Vietnam, killing all 81 passengers and crew on board18
  • On December 20, 1972, North Central Airlines Flight 575, a McDonnell Douglas DC-9-31, collided during its takeoff roll with Delta Air Lines Flight 954, a Convair 880 N8807E, as the Convair 880 taxied across the runway at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago, Illinois Only two people on the Convair 880 were injured, but 10 people died and 15 were injured on board the DC-919
  • On August 20, 1977, a Monarch Aviation CV-880-22-2 N8817E struck trees and crashed shortly after takeoff from Juan Santamaria International Airport due to overloading, killing the three crew20
  • On November 3, 1980, a Latin Carga CV-880-22-2 YV-145C crashed on takeoff from Simon Bolivar International Airport during a crew training flight, killing the four crew21
  • On May 11, 1983, a Groth Air CV-880-22-2 N880SR burned out at Juarez International Airport22
  • In October 1986, an FAA CV-880-22M-3 N5863 was destroyed in a test with anti-misting kerosene fuel additive at Mojave, California23

Surviving aircraftedit

Elvis' Convair 880, named Lisa Marie after his daughter Convair 880 in private ownership in South Africa The cockpit instrument panel of the USN UC-880
  • 1 – Cockpit on display at the Delta Flight Museum in Atlanta, Georgia24
  • 3 – Forward fuselage in storage at the Aviation Hall of Fame and Museum of New Jersey in Teterboro, New Jersey2526
  • 23 – Forward fuselage in storage with Scroggins Aviation in Mojave, California: This airframe was cut up for scrap in April 2007, with the forward fuselage being saved for use in a museum27
  • 35 – In storage with Scroggins Aviation in Mojave, California28
  • 38 Lisa Marie – On display at Graceland in Memphis, Tennessee:2930 This airframe was used by Elvis Presley and is named after his daughter It is the only properly preserved airframe It was formerly in commercial service with Delta31 In January 2015, it was put up for sale and eventually bought back by Elvis Presley Enterprises The aircraft is part of the Presley Museum collection32
  • 58 – Converted into lodge in East London, South Africa:33 This airframe was converted into a business jet in the 1970s registration N88CH It was purchased by the Ciskei government in 1987 intended for use by president Lennox Sebe, but remained at Bhisho Airport for several years due to a lack of funds to make it airworthy In 1992, it was bought by Billy Nel now Eastern Cape Provincial Finance MEC, who had it transported to his private residence north of East London, South Africa The 1970s, VIP interior with couches, beds and a bar remain intact and it is used for private functions One of the engines was donated to the Stutterheim Engine Museum9343536

Specifications 880 Model 22 and 22-Medit

Data from Jane's All The World's Aircraft 1965-66 37

General characteristics

  • Crew: 3
  • Capacity: 110 passengers
  • Payload: 24,000 lb 10,900 kg
  • Length: 129 ft 4 in 3942 m
  • Wingspan: 120 ft 0 in 3658 m
  • Height: 36 ft 3¾ in 1100 m
  • Wing area: 2,000 sq ft 1858 m²
  • Aspect ratio: 72
  • Empty weight: 94,000 lb 42,730 kg
  • Max takeoff weight: 193,000 lb 203,400 lb 880-M 87,730 kg
  • Powerplant: 4 × General Electric CJ-805-3B turbojet, 11,650 lbf 5195 kN each


  • Cruise speed: 610 mph48 max mach: 89 approx 615 MPH 535 knots, 990 km/h max cruise at 22,500 ft 6,860 m
  • Stall speed: 111 mph 97 knots, 179 km/h
  • Range: 3,385 mi 3,750 880-M 2,943 nmi, 4,430 km
  • Service ceiling: 41,000 ft 12,500 m max cruise altitude

See alsoedit

Related development Related lists


  1. ^ "Here's Convair 880 - Fastest Jet Transport in the World"Popular Mechanics, March 1959, p 87
  2. ^ Wegg 1990, p 214
  3. ^ Wegg 1990 p 215
  4. ^ Pourade Richard F "San Diego history" sandiegohistoryorg Retrieved: May 19, 2010
  5. ^ Proctor, Jon 1996 Convair 880& 990 First ed Miami: World Transport Press p 13 ISBN 0-9626730-4-8 
  6. ^ Proctor, Jon Convair 880 & 990 
  7. ^ Proctor, Jon 1996 Convair 880 & 990 First ed Miami: World Transport Press pp 44–45 ISBN 0-9626730-4-8 
  8. ^ Pugh, Vernon "DVIC image DN-ST-92-10041" Archived 2008-05-28 at the Wayback Machinedodmediaosdmil Retrieved: May 19, 2010
  9. ^ a b Lockett, Brian "Convair 880" Goleta Air & Space Museum Retrieved: May 19, 2010
  10. ^ Proctor, Jon 1996 Convair 880 & 990 First ed Miami: World Transport Press p 46 
  11. ^ Accident description for N8804E at the Aviation Safety Network Retrieved on 16 December 2010
  12. ^ Accident description for JA8030 at the Aviation Safety Network Retrieved on 30 June 2017
  13. ^ Accident description for VR-HFX at the Aviation Safety Network Retrieved on 30 June 2017
  14. ^ "Aircraft Accident Report Trans World Airlines, Inc, Convair 880, N821TW, Constance, Kentucky, November 20, 1967" PDF libraryonlineerauedu National Transportation Safety Board Report Number NTSB-AAR-69-05 Retrieved 19 May 2010 
  15. ^ Hijacking description at the Aviation Safety Network Retrieved on 30 June 2017
  16. ^ Accident description for JA8028 at the Aviation Safety Network Retrieved on 30 June 2017
  17. ^ Hijacking description for N8802E at the Aviation Safety Network Retrieved on 30 June 2017
  18. ^ Criminal description for VR-HFZ at the Aviation Safety Network Retrieved on 19 May 2010
  19. ^ "Aircraft Accident Report North Central Airlines, Inc, McDonnell Douglas DC-9-31, N954N, and Delta Air Lines, Inc, Convair CV-880, N8807E, O’Hare International Airport, Chicago, Illinois, December 20, 1972, adopted July 5, 1973" National Transportation Safety Board Report Number NTSB-AAR-73-15
  20. ^ Accident description for N8817E at the Aviation Safety Network Retrieved on 30 June 2017
  21. ^ Accident description for YV-145C at the Aviation Safety Network Retrieved on 30 June 2017
  22. ^ Hull-loss description for N880SR at the Aviation Safety Network Retrieved on 30 June 2017
  23. ^ Accident description for N5863 at the Aviation Safety Network Retrieved on 30 June 2017
  24. ^ "Convair 880 Prototype" Delta Flight Museum Retrieved 18 October 2016 
  25. ^ "Ship 3" ConvairJetcom ConvairJetcom 21 September 2007 Retrieved 20 September 2016 
  26. ^ "Aircraft N801AJ Data" Airport-Datacom Airport-Datacom Retrieved 20 September 2016 
  27. ^ "Convair 880, serial no 23, N817TW" ConvairJetcom ConvairJetcom Retrieved 20 September 2016 
  28. ^ "Convair 880, serial no 35, N815AJ" ConvairJetcom ConvairJetcom Retrieved 20 September 2016 
  29. ^ "Other Graceland Museums & Exhibits" Graceland Elvis Presley Enterprises, Inc Retrieved 20 September 2016 
  30. ^ "Airframe Dossier - Convair CV-880-22-2, c/n 22-00-38, c/r N880EP" Aerial Visuals AerialVisualsca Retrieved 20 September 2016 
  31. ^ "The Lisa Marie – The Convair 880 jet" elviscomau Retrieved: May 19, 2010
  32. ^ "BBC News - Elvis Presley's private jets up for sale" BBC Online Retrieved 3 January 2015 
  33. ^ "Convair 880 N88CH at Shadow Park Lodge » 2005-11-16" Aviation Pics Aviation Pics Retrieved 20 September 2016 
  34. ^ Hollands, Barbara "Down by the river with Billy Nel, the collector king of boys’ toys" weekendpostcoza, January 29, 2005 Retrieved: May 19, 2010
  35. ^ "Remember when " Archived 2011-06-15 at the Wayback Machine dispatchcoza Retrieved: May 19, 2010
  36. ^ "Airport has not taken off" ppruneorg Retrieved: May 19, 2010
  37. ^ Taylor 1965, p 233
  38. ^ Proctor, Jon 1996 Convair 880 & 990 First ed Miami: World Transport Press p 13 ISBN 0-9626730-4-8 
  • Proctor, Jon Convair 880 & 990 Miami, FL: World Transport Press, 1996 ISBN 0-9626730-4-8
  • Taylor, John W R Jane's All The World's Aircraft 1965-66 London: Samson Low, Marston, 1965
  • Wegg, John General Dynamic Aircraft and their Predecessors London:Putnam, 1990 ISBN 0-85177-833-X
  • Wilson, Stewart Airliners of the World Fyshwick, Australia: Aerospace Publications Pty Ltd, 1999 ISBN 1-875671-44-7

External linksedit

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Convair 880
  • Aerofiles — Data and photos of Convair aircraft
  • Goleta Air and Space Museum — Information and pictures of various Convair 880s
  • ConvairJetcom — An organization focused on preserving several Convair 880s
  • Aviation-Safetynet — Convair 880 Accident Database
  • Aviation History Online — Convair CV880permanent dead link
  • YouTube video of a Delta Airlines Convair 880
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Convair 880 Information about

Convair 880Convair 880 Convair 880 viewing the topic.

Convair 880 what, Convair 880 who, Convair 880 explanation

There are excerpts from wikipedia on this article and video


F-102nin temel grevi dman uaklarn tespit ve imhayd. F-102 Dnyann ilk her trl hava artlarnda grev yapabilen spersonik nleme ua ve USAFn servise giren ilk delta kanatl uadr.  lk uuu 24 Ekim 1953de yaplm, 1956dan itibaren Hava Savunma Komutanlnda hizmete girmeye balamtr. Convair, 975i F-102A olmak zere toplam 1,101 adet F-102 retmitir. USAF sava eitim ua olarak pilot ve rencinin yanyana oturduu TF-102lerden de  111 adet satn almtr.

Uaktaki elektronik donanm sava durumunda dman uan tespit edip radarlar vastasyla saldr pozisyonuna geirecek, uygun zaman geldiinde de elektronik ate kontrol sistemi araclyla AA roket ve fzeleri otomatik olarak ateleyecek tarzda gelitirilmitir.

Bir gei dnemi ua olmasna ramen Delta Dagger uzun ve baarl bir servis hayat geirmi, ABDyi Sovyet ve dier lkelerin hava saldrlarndan korumutur. En byk eksiklii hznn dk olmasyd. ok az bir farkla spersonikti ancak harici tanklar taklnca hz Mach 0.95te kalyordu ve bu da hzl bombardman uaklarn yakalamaya yetmiyordu. Daha hzl F-101B ve F-106lar knca gnleri sayl olmaya balad.

ABD dnda F-102A ve TF-102ler yalnz Trkiye ve Yunanistan tarafndan kullanlmtr.

The primary mission of the F-102 was to intercept and destroy enemy aircraft. It was the world's first supersonic all-weather jet interceptor and the USAF's first operational delta-wing aircraft. The F-102 made its initial flight on Oct. 24, 1953 and became operational with the Air Defense Command in 1956. Convair built 1,101 F-102s, 975 of which were F-102As. The USAF also bought 111 TF-102s as combat trainers with side-by-side seating.

In a wartime situation, after electronic equipment on board the F-102 had located the enemy aircraft, the F-102's radar would guide it into position for attack. At the proper moment, the electronic fire control system would automatically fire the F-102's AA rockets and missiles.

Eventhough it was interim interceptor, the Delta Dagger served a long and successful life and helped to deter the Soviets or any other enemy from sending bombers against the United States. The biggest drawback to the F-102 was its lack of speed. It was a supersonic aircraft, but only by a small margin. With external tanks attached, it was limited to Mach .95 which was not sufficient to intercept the fast bombers. Once the faster F-101Bs and F-106s became available, its days were numbered.

Outside USA F-102A and TF-102 were used only by Turkey and Greece.

F-102A specs/doneleri:

Crew/mrettebat: 1, engine/motor: 1 x Pratt & Whitney J57, thrust/iti gc:71kN, Wingspan/kanat akl: 11.58m. Length/boy: 20.77m. Height/ykseklik: 6.43m. Max. weight/azami arl: 14,265kg. Max speed/azami hz: 1338km/h. Cruising speed/seyir hz: 990km/h. Range/menzil: 1,650km Ceiling/tavan: 16.720m.

Armament/silah donanm: 24 x unguided/gdmsz 2.75rockets, 6 x AIM-4 Falcon AA missiles/fze

Convair XC-99 transport, design, specifications, history and photographs

Convair XC-99 Cargo Transport(from the Wings Friend or Foes Series)

As the advent of jet aircraft began to emerge in the late 1940s and early 1950s, Convair started design on variants of its B-36 Peacemaker. It created a swept-winged version with all-jet propulsion, known as the YB-60.

The other variant of the B-36 was the giant cargo plane, the XC-99 (S/N 43-52436) , the largest piston-engined aircraft in the world. It was built at the Consolidated plant in San Diego, had its maiden flight on November 23, 1947, and was delivered to the Air Force in May 1949. The XC-99 was used for many years in active service.

The XC-99 logged more than 7,400 hours of flying time and moved more than 60 million pounds of cargo. The XC-99 made its final voyage March 19, 1957.

The US Air Force determined that it had no need for such a large, long-range transport plane at that time, and no more were ordered. The sole XC-99 served until 1957, including extensive usage during the Korean War.

It made twice weekly trips from Kelly AFB to the aircraft depot at McClellan AFB, California, transporting supplies and parts for the B-36 bomber while returning by way of other bases or depots making pick-ups and deliveries along the way.

In 1957, due to metal fatigue, the XC-99 was taken out of service, and put on display in San Antonio. Eventually the plane deterioted, and in 1993 was transferred to the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force in Dayton.

Disassembly of the aircraft began at Kelly Field in April 2004. Portions of the airframe were then airlifted from Kelly, some pieces via C-5 Galaxy aircraft. By the summer of 2008, the XC-99 had been completely transferred to Dayton.

The aircraft was moved again in 2012 to Davis-Monthan AFB in Tucson for storage in the dry desert environment to prevent any further corrosion until funding for restoration is available.

  • Crew: Five duty + five reserve crew
  • Capacity: 400 troops Payload: 100,000 lb
  • Length: 182 ft 6 in
  • Wingspan: 230 ft 0 in
  • Height: 57 ft 6 in
  • Wing area: 4,772 ft²
  • Empty weight: 135,232 lb
  • Loaded weight: 265,000 lb
  • Max takeoff weight: 320,000 lb
  • Powerplant: 6 × Pratt & Whitney R-4360-41 Wasp Major 28-cylinder air-cooled radial engine, 3,500 hp each
  • Performance: Maximum speed: 307 mph
  • Range: 8,100 mi
  • Service ceiling: 30,000 ft

Convair Model 37

Convair also considered developing a commercial airliner based on the B-36 and XC-99, but ultimately scrapped the idea in favor of pursuing the Convair 880 jetliner.

The Convair Model 37 was to have a wing span of 230 feet, 182 feet in length, and a double-deck fuselage.

Passenger capacity of the plane was planned at 204. Cruising speeds were projected to be between 310-342 mph, and be able to operate at altitudes up to 30,000 feet, with a range of 4,200 miles.

Fifteen (15) aircraft were ordered by Pan American World Airways for transatlantic service. However, fuel and oil consumption of the six 3,500 hp Wasp Major radials led to the decision that the Model 37 was not economically feasible. With only orders for 15 Model 37s, Convair cancelled the plane.

Convair XC-99 Transport landing during trials - S/N 43-52436

Convair XC-99 - Nose view as seen in LIFE

Top of the wing of the Convair XC-99

Convair XC-99 takeoff run



Convair XC-99 on the tarmac

Convair XC-99 loading 400 passengers

Convair XC-99 parked next to twin-egine Convair airliner

Convair XC-99 in flight

Convair XC-99 and B-36 Peacemaker in flight formation

Convair XC-99 Transport - circa 1954

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Convair B-36 – The Ultimate Peacemaker – Aces Flying High

The Convair B-36 Peacemaker was the primary nuclear weapon strategic bomber of the USAF Strategic Air Command (SAC) from 1948 to 1959 (it started to be replaced in this role from 1955 when the Boeing B-52 Stratofortress was first introduced with all being replaced 1958-1959). The B-36 had a range of 16,000 km (10,000 miles) meaning it became the first bomber with a unrefueled intercontinental striking range (enough to fly from the east coast of the USA to Moscow and back). In the 11 years the B-36 Peacemaker was in service it was never used in combat. It’s role as a nuclear deterrent to the Soviet Union during the Cold War could not have been better summed up than in its name.

USAF Convair B-36D Peacemaker (Photo Source: USAF)


The B-36 design process originally began in 1941 from a requirement to have a strategic bomber that was capable of bombing targets in Europe from bases in the United States. As World War Two progressed this requirement changed to bombing targets in the Pacific theatre but with the success of the Boeing B-29 Superfortress the aircraft was more or less put on the back-burner. Although the war was over in 1945, with the “success” of the nuclear bomb it was determined that a nuclear bomber aircraft was required and the B-36 eventually entered production in 1946 (the prototype first flew on August 8th, 1946). By then the Soviet Union and her Communist allies were the new potential target.

USAF Convair B-36B Peacemaker (Photo Source: USAF)


Between 1946 to 1954 Convair (originally Consolidated Vultee) built 384 B-36’s. The B-36 is the largest mass-produced piston engined aircraft in history and has the biggest wingspan of any combat aircraft produced (Length 49.4 m / 162.1 ft, height 14.3 m / 46.9 ft and wingspan 70.1 m / 230 ft). The B-36 was fitted with six reverse facing 3,800 hp Pratt & Whitney R-4360 engines that powered it to a cruising speed of 370 kmh / 230 mph. Introduced in the B-36D model onwards were an additional 4 General Electric J47 jet engines each with 5,200 lbs. of thrust that were fitted in pairs under each wing, The jet engines could provide an additional speed boost taking the top speed of the B-36 up to 700 kmh / 435 mph when required. This unique engine layout led to the saying “six turning and four burning” used by B-36 aircrews. The big bomber could reach an altitude of 13,300 m / 43,600 ft. (at combat weight).

The prototype Peacemaker the XB-36 was built in 1945. The giant single tyres were replaced by a 4 tyre configuration in production aircraftFirst flight of the XB-36 on August 8th, 1946In 1948 the XB-36 dwarfed its predecessor the Boeing B-29 Superfortress! (Photo Source: USAF)Convair B-36J-75-CF (SN 52-2827) the last production B-36J (Photo Souce: USAF)

The B-36 bombers had a crew of 15 (13 in the later “Featherweight III” high altitude versions) consisting of a pilot, copilot, two navigators, bombardier, flight engineer, radio operator, radar operator, two Electronic Counter Measures (ECM) operators and five gunners. The reconnaissance version had a crew of 22 (19 in the later “Featherweight III” high altitude versions).

Convair B-36B from the 7th USAF Bombardment Wing (Photo Source: USAF)

Armament on the bomber consisted of 16 M24 20mm cannons in eight turrets (later reconnaissance versions had just a twin 20mm gun turret in the tail) and a huge weapons payload capability of 39,000 Kg / 86,000 pounds of nuclear or conventional bombs. The B-36 could carry the massive Mark 17 atomic bomb which was 6.55m / 21.5 ft. long and weighed 21 tonnes!

Mark 17 atomic bomb at Castle Air Museum (2012)


In addition to the B-36A/B/D/F/H/J bombers, variants of the B-36 were fitted for photo reconnaissance (RB-36B/D/E/F) and others were used for various experimental purposes including the FICON (Fighter Conveyer) project. In the RB-36D model, the number one bomb bay was equipped with 14 cameras, the second bay carried up to 80 x 100 pound photo flash bombs for nighttime photography, the third bay was for miscellaneous equipment or an extra fuel cell to extend range and the final bay was equipped with Electronic Counter Measures (ECM). The RB-36 models differed in appearance from a standard B-36 with extra antennas and 3 extra radomes along the bottom of the fuselage (reconnaissance and ECM equipment). USAF reconnaissance missions using the RB-36 included flights from Japan over Manchuria in Communist China and the Soviet Union (flight from the UK also flew over Soviet arctic bases).

Convair RB-36D Peacemaker in flight (Photo Source: USAF)I really like this photo of a Convair RB-36H Peacemaker in flight with the contrails coming from the rear facing engines. Note the dual radomes on the tail turret, a characteristic of the H and J model’s with an improved AN/APG-41A fire control radar system. (Photo Source: USAF)

The FICON (Fighter Conveyer) project of the 1950’s involved the testing of modified parasite Republic GRF-84F Ficon reconnaissance fighters (25 were converted from the RF-84F Thunderflash in 1953 and later re-designated RF-84K. In addition the retractable hookup equipment in the nose of the fighter and a modified anhedral tailplane to better fit inside the bomber) that could be launched from the bomb bay of a specially equipped GRB-36D Peacemaker (10 RB-36 were modified) fitted with a retractable probe for hookup/retrieval of the fighter. The fighter could protect the bomber from enemy interceptors or conduct reconnaissance and bombing missions over target locations (the B-36 was a flying aircraft carrier). Testing was conducted from 1952 and between 1955 to 1956 the FICON concept saw limited operational service. Although found to be technically sound the hookup process was extremely difficult even for experienced test pilots (yet alone in inclement weather). The FICON project was cancelled in 1956 when the successful development of inflight refueling of fighter aircraft made it redundant to carry parasite fighters. The Lockheed U-2 high altitude reconnaissance aircraft was also just coming into service in 1956 making it even more unneccessary to carry reconnaissance fighters.

USAF FICON (Fighter Conveyer) project YRB-36 and YF-84F in launch position (Photo Source: USAF)Republic YRF-84F Ficon at the USAF Wright Patterson AFB Research and Developmental Gallery (photo taken during my 2009 visit). Note the special nose attachment for connecting to the GRB-36D.

An earlier project along similar lines to FICON was the McDonnell XF-85 Goblin parasite fighter. This small jet fighter was planned to be launched from the B-36 as protection against enemy interceptors. 2 prototypes of the XF-85 were built for testing with the flying in 1948. Although in theory the small and stubby XF-85 was a good idea it was not as fast as the enemy jets it was intended to counter and there were also issues in re-docking with the test Boeing EB-29 Superfortress (none of the then new B-36’s were available for testing at that stage). The project was cancelled in 1949.

McDonnell XF-85 parasite fighter at the Strategic Air and Space Museum in Ashland, Nebraska – note the hook for connection/release from the bomber (2013)The McDonnell XF-85 parasite fighter first flew in 1948 but the project was cancelled in 1949A McDonnell XF-85 connected to the parasite fighter hook of a testbed Boeing EB-29 Superfortress (Photo Source: USAF)

The Convair XC-99 was a one-off prototype heavy transport aircraft developed from the B-36 that could carry up to 400 troops. It shared the same wings, engines and some other airframe components. The XC-99 was tested and used for research from 1949 to 1957 before being retired by the USAF.

A B-36 with a Convair XC-99 which was a one off transport version of the B-36. It was tested and used for research from 1949 to 1957. Today it is in storage at the USAF Museum (Photo Source: USAF)

Scarily there was the NB-36H Peacemaker variant (originally designated XB-36H) fitted with a nuclear reactor for trials as part of the Nuclear Test Aircraft (NTA) program to test the viability of a nuclear powered bomber from July 1955 to March 1957. The NB-36H was fitted with a three megawatt, air-cooled nuclear reactor in its bomb bay (Aircraft Shield Test Reactor) and had a revised cockpit and raised nose with a special crew cabin that was lead and rubber lined (this was the first aircraft to ever be fitted with a nuclear reactor)! The crew consisted of the pilot, copilot, flight engineer and two nuclear engineers.

Convair NB-36H Peacemaker experimental aircraft (s/n 51-5712) fitted with a nuclear reactor and a Boeing B-50 Superfortress chase plane (Photo Source: USAF)

47 test flights and 215 hours of flight time were completed over New Mexico and Texas in the NB-36H (the nuclear reactor was operated for only 89 of these hours). Luckily the program was cancelled and the aircraft was scrapped in 1958. It was bad enough having “Broken Arrow” incidents where a bomber with nuclear weapons has crashed or accidentally dropped a nuclear weapon that has not detonated (at least 32 “Broken Arrow” incidents have occurred involving US aircraft since the 1950’s including at least one with a B-36) yet alone having them flying around with nuclear reactors onboard!

Convair NB-36H in flight. Note the radiation warning symbol on the tail. (Photo Source: USAF)

A further aircraft was developed from the B-36. This was the Convair YB-60 which first flew on April 18th, 1952. The YB-60 was a larger 8 engine bomber in competition with the Boeing YB-52. It was originally designated YB-36G and was fitted with a new 37-degree swept wing, a bigger tail section and revised nose section.

Convair YB-60 (S/N 49-2676) in 1952. Note the B-36 in the background (Photo Source: USAF)The Convair YB-60 in flight (Photo Source: USAF)

The YB-60 had a top speed of 820 kmh / 510 mph and a cruising speed of 700 kmh / 435 mph. Although 330 kmh / 205 mph faster than the B-36 at cruising speed and a more efficient aircraft (the crew was reduced from 15 in the B-36 to 5 in the YB-60) the project was cancelled on August 14th, 1952 when it was obvious that the Boeing YB-52 was a faster and better option (the YB-52 had a maximum speed 982 kmh / 610 mph with a cruising speed of 845 kmh / 525 mph).  The YB-60 did have a larger bomb load, but the decision to continue with the YB-52 has been well and truly proven by the fact that the later model B-52’s are still in service today. Of the two YB-60 prototypes built only one was fully completed and unfortunately both were scrapped in the mid 1950’s (S/N 49-2676 and 49-2684 the latter was not completed).

Convair YB-60 in 1952. Note the three B-36s in the background (Photo Source: USAF)My favourite photo of the Convair YB-60The winner was the Boeing YB-52 (Photo Source: USAF)


The 1955 movie Strategic Air Command starring Jimmy Stewart as Lt. Col. Robert ‘Dutch’ Holland featured great footage of the Convair B-36 Peacemaker. In 1955 the US National Board of Review of Motion Pictures awarded the film a special citation for aerial photography and it was nominated for the Best Writing, Motion Picture Story category in the 1956 Academy Awards.


Of the 384 B-36’s built only 4 complete and assembled airframes exist today. All 4 are on display in museums in the United States and I am happy to say I have managed to see them all in my travels:

  • B-36J (S/N 52-2220) – National Museum of the USAF in Dayton, Ohio. This is the last one to ever fly. It was flown to the museum from Davis-Monthan Air Force Base in Arizona on April 30th, 1959.
  • B-36J (S/N 52-2217) – Strategic Air and Space Museum in Ashland, Nebraska. This one was built in Fort Worth, Texas and delivered to Strategic Air Command on December 22nd, 1953.
  • B-36J (S/N 52-2827) – Pima Air and Space Museum in Tucson, Arizona (adjacent to Davis-Monthan Air Force Base and AMARG “the Boneyard’). This was the last B-36 built (1956) and was named “The City of Fort Worth”. In 1959 it was returned to Texas and displayed at Amon Carter Field. After years of neglect in the outdoors it was eventually taken back by the USAF and later loaned to Pima where it has been restored in the markings of the 95th Bomb Wing, Biggs AFB, El Paso, Texas.
  • RB-36H (S/N 51-13730) – Castle Air Museum (at the former Castle Air Force Base) in Atwater, California. 73 RB-36H models were built and this is the only survivor. It served with the 28th Strategic Reconnaissance Wing at Ellsworth Air Force Base, South Dakota from 1952 to 1957.
The last B-36J built at Forth Worth, Texas on July 1st, 1954 (Photo Source: University of North Texas Library)

Note: There is one other disassembled example, a YB-36 (S/N 42-13571) that is in private hands in Ohio but was originally at the USAF museum. In 1972 the airframe was cut up and being readied for scrap when it was purchased and saved by Walter Soplata (it remains in pieces on his farm).

The Convair XC-99 still exists today too. It is disassembled and in storage at the USAF Museum awaiting restoration.

The B-36’s at Castle and Pima are displayed outdoors. The others are displayed indoors. The first thing you notice with the B-36 is the overwhelming scale of the aircraft. They are impressive to say the least and you cant help but feel very small when you walk around under the massive fuselage, wings and all those engines.

The evolution of USAF bombers in just over 40 years – a great size comparison (WW1 – Airco Dh5 & Martin MB-1, 1930’s – Martin B-10, 1940’s Boeing B-17, B-29 & Convair B-36)

National Museum of the USAF

The B-36J at Dayton, Ohio was the first I ever saw. When you see that massive airframe and huge wings you cant help but be impressed. It dwarves all other aircraft around it! Unless stated otherwise the following photos were taken during my visit to the museum in 2009.

Convair B-36J Peacemaker at the National Museum of the USAF in Dayton, Ohio (2009)Convair B-36J Peacemaker at the National Museum of the USAF in Dayton, Ohio (2009)DAYTON, Ohio – Convair B-36J cockpit at the National Museum of the United States Air Force (Photo Source: Lockheed Martin Code One)Convair B-36J Peacemaker at the National Museum of the USAF in Dayton, Ohio (2009)

Strategic Air & Space Museum

The B-36J in Ashland, Nebraska naturally dominates the display hangar. It is interesting to see the B-36J alongside its successor the mighty B-52. Uniquely the bomber is displayed with a McDonnell XF-85 Goblin parasite fighter from the FICON (Fighter Conveyer) project. The following photos were taken during my visit to the museum in 2013.

Convair B-36J Peacemaker at the Strategic Air & Space Museum in Ashland, Nebraska (2013)The big B-36J dominates all the other aircraft on display at the Strategic Air & Space Museum in Ashland, Nebraska (2013)Strategic Air & Space Museum in Nebraska (2013)The McDonnell XF-85 parasite fighter was intended to be launched from and protect the B-36 but the project was cancelled in 1949 (Strategic Air and Space Museum 2013)

Pima Air and Space Museum

The dry desert air of southern Arizona keeps this beautifully restored B-36J in nice shape! Pima is a massive air museum. Nearby the B-36 are three B-52’s! The following photos were taken during my visit to the museum in 2011.

The B-36J at the Pima Air & Space Museum in Arizona (2011)All those engines (Pratt & Whitney R-4360)!Pima P-36J walk aroundA fine restorationDespite all those engines the B-36 really wasn’t fast enough hence the addition of the jet engines in later models

Castle Air Museum

The last surviving RB-36H reconnaissance model was still undergoing some restoration when I visited the Castle Air Museum in Atwater, California in 2012 (one of the largest air museums on the west coast). The museum is opposite Castle airport which was formerly Castle Air Force Base (1941 – 1995) which in later years was the home of the 93d Bombardment Wing and the primary Boeing B-52 Stratofortress training base of the USAF Strategic Air Command. The following photos were taken during my visit to the museum in 2012.

The RB-36H at Castle Air Museum in California (2012)RB-36H walk aroundRB-36H walk around

The Convair B-36 Peacemaker is an impressive aircraft to see. Its sheer size was probably enough deterrent alone but it served its nation well in those terrifying early days of the Cold War by providing a suitable balance of power and nuclear deterrent to maintain peace when it was needed most.

SAC Past and Future: The last B-36H flight from Carswell AFB in Texas on May 30th, 1958 – flying in formation with a Convair YB-58 Hustler and Boeing B-52 Stratofortress (Photo Source: USAF Historical Research Agency)

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Convair B-58 Hustler - bomber

In March 1949 the US Air Force's Air Research and Development Command (ARDC) invited proposals for a supersonic bomber, and after submissions had been reduced to two, from Boeing and Consolidated-Vultee's Fort Worth Division, the latter was selected in August 1952 to develop its Convair Model 4 designed to the hardware stage under contract MX-1964. On 10 December 1952 the designation B-58 was allocated and late in that year Convair received a contract for 18 aircraft, to be powered by a new J79 engine for which General Electric received a development contract at the same time. The performance requirement for the new aircraft demanded considerable advances in aerodynamics, structures and materials. The resulting design, one of the first to incorporate the NACA/ Whitcomb-developed area-rule concept, was a delta-winged aircraft with four engines in underslung pods, a slim fuselage and, perhaps its most novel feature, a 18.90m long under-fuselage pod to carry fuel and a nuclear weapon. The three-man crew, in individual tandem cockpits, were provided with jetti-sonable escape capsules.

In June 1954 the 18-aircraft order was reduced to two XB-58 prototypes and 11 YB-58A pre-production examples, together with 31 pods. The first of these was rolled out at Fort Worth on 31 August 1956, making its first flight on 11 November piloted by B. A. Erikson. On 30 December, still without a pod, the XB-58 became the first bomber to exceed Mach 1. A further 17 YB-58As were ordered on 14 February 1958, together with 35 MB-1 bomb pods, to bring to 30 the number of aircraft available for the manufacturer's test programme and ARDC service trials with the 6592nd Test Squadron and the 3958th Operational Test and Evaluation Squadron at Carswell AFB.

A total of 86 production B-58A Hustler bombers was ordered between September 1958 and 1960, supplemented by 10 YB-58As which were brought up to production standard to equip the 43rd Bomb Wing, initially at Carswell but later assigned to Little Rock AFB, Arkansas, and the 305th Bomb Wing at Bunker Hill AFB, Indiana. The first was handed over to the 65th Combat Crew Training Squadron at Carswell on 1 December 1959 and the 43rd Bomb Wing, activated as the first B-58 unit on 15 March 1960, became operational on 1 August 1960. The 116th and last B-58A was delivered on 26 October 1962 and the type was withdrawn from Strategic Air Command service on 31 January 1970.

With such outstanding performance it was clear that the B-58A had record-breaking potential. On 12 January 1961 Major Henry Deutschendorf and his crew secured the 2000km closed-circuit record at 1708.8km/h and on 14 January Major Harold E. Confer's aircraft raised the 1000km record to 2067.57km/h. On 10 May Major Elmer Murphy won the trophy presented by Louis Bleriot in 1930 for the first pilot to exceed 2000km/h for a continuous period of 30 minutes. Sixteen days later Major William Payne and his crew flew from Carswell to Paris setting, en route, record times of 3 hours 39 minutes 49 seconds from Washington and 3 hours 19 minutes 51 seconds from New York; sadly the Hustler crashed at the Paris Air Show on 3 June with the loss of the crew. Other flights included a supersonic endurance record of 8 hours 35 minutes from Haneda, Tokyo to London, on 16 October 1963.

 ENGINE4 x General Electric J79-GE-5A turbo-jets, 69.3kN with afterburner
    Take-off weight73936 kg163002 lb
    Wingspan17.32 m57 ft 10 in
    Length29.49 m97 ft 9 in
    Height9.58 m31 ft 5 in
    Wing area143.25 m21541.93 sq ft
    Max. speed2229 km/h1385 mph
    Ceiling18290 m60000 ft
    Range3219 km2000 miles
 ARMAMENT1 x 20mm cannon, nuclear bombs inside the container under the fuselage
A three-view drawing (1000 x 559)
Don Clifford, 12.06.2017

I was stationed at Bunker Hill from Jan. 1967 till Sept. 1970. I worked in the base supply research section. I remember the B58 that crashed on takeoff and also seem to remember one that had the nose landing gear collapse. That second one was repaired and put on display for awhile. After the B58's were retired, the base became a air refueling wing with KC-135's.

Rob Ransone, 06.02.2017

I have 106 hours in the B-58 as a flight test engineer at the Air Force Flight test Center, Edwards, AFB, California, between 1957 and 1964. I flew the Category II Stability & Control Evaluation with Charlie Bock, the Heavy Weight Performance Evaluation with Charlie Bock, the Refused Takeoff Tests with Fitz Fulton, and the Stability and Control Evaluation with Fitz Fulton to evaluate the flight control changes made after the accident over Oklahoma, and to learn how to slow the unstable airplane safely from M=2 after a complete stability augmentation system failure. These stories are documented in my book "More Than An Engineer," available form

Ralph S Miller, 06.02.2017

I am a retired Army Aviator and retired Professional Aeronautical Engineer (Texas) who graduated from Purdue in 1952. I went to work at Convair in 1953 as a Structural Engineer. Although very junior, I worked with experienced Engineers measuring the deflections under various load distributions on an elastic structural model of the B-58 vertical tail. We determined that it needed to be stiffer. I moved on to another local aircraft company so do not know when that was done. I believe it was a factor in the loss of the test plane in the outboard sudden engine failure test over Oklahoma. This is discussed in a great little book available from Amazon entitled The B-58 Blunder published in 2015 by Colonel George Holt, Jr., about $10 or $12. His point about blunder is related to withdrawing the B-58 from service ten years too soon. I recommend you get a copy. I am sure you will find it interesting. He tells much about the program including losses. RSM

Fausto DelGrosso, 29.12.2016

Does anyone out there in 58 land know Bill Shunney.He was a pilot/AC on one of your birds back when..... maybe early1960s. We were in Flight school learning to be navigator/ bombardiers back in 1952-53. Then sent to Loring AFB , Limestone, Me. Great guy. Had many years doing SAC's thing. He went to pilot training, I went back to college. Would be interested in any tales.


Robin Geiger, 23.09.2016

My father, Melbourne Arthur Paceley was one of the men of the 305 Wing A, as a Nuclear Weapon Specialist, discharged as Sargeant in 1967. He told me several stories, the one that stands out the most was the incident the sirens went off, an explosion of the plane in the hangar? I would love to get a listing of all of his buddies in the same batallion. He went to basic at Lackland AFB, down in TX, then went to Lawry AFB for training, and then transferred to Bunker Hill AFB. Is there a link you can lead me to? My father is alive and well, living in Decatur, IL presently. I would love to hear from his buddies, people that knew him and I can pass on the information to him since he does not use internet that much.Thank you in advance!

Ralph Holm, 16.08.2016

Would love to have photos of the B 58

Ralph Holm, 16.08.2016

I just turned 70 so this is not a new experience for me. My uncle Fleet Wilson worked as a specialist for Convair on fitting the cockpits and gear sections for pilots of the B58 at the Ft Worth Plant. He knew what a plane nut I was and gave me his colored photos of the 58 when it rolled off the line ,filled me in with all the particulars of the aircraft and how blazing fast it was. Loved that plane and watched as often as I was in Ft Worth as a 10 year old .

David Curran, 07.05.2016

It was in 1959 that I saw my first and last B-58 Hustler. I was 9 years old and was outside throwing a football with my brother in the front yard of our home in Lawton, OK.I happened to look up and saw a beautiful B-58 Hustler glistening in the sun light far over head. I was really into building model planes, so I quickly knew what plane it was and its name.I looked down for a moment and threw the football to my brother. Then I looked back skyward to take another look at the B-58. To my surprise all that was in the clear blue Oklahoma sky was a white cloud of smoke where the B-58 should have been. Can't remember if I heard the explosion or not?I ran into the house and told my father that a jet plane had just exploded. He just laughed and said for me to go back outside and play. About 30 minutes later my father came out and told me the TV news had just reported that a jet plane had blown up over the local area.

Gary Louderback, 01.04.2016

My father, TSGT. Clarence "Clancy" Louderback

steve fowler, 27.10.2015

I was at Little rock 66-70. I was a KC-135 crew chief all of my roommates were 58's. I was actually on the flightline when Rigleys baby landed and the landing gear collapsed. I watched in disbelief as it occurred. My acft 60-0339 had the left wing burn up when #2 engine threw compressor blades during engine run. my KC spent several months in the hanger being repaired. Great times at Littlerock.

George Haloulakos, 03.09.2015

The Convair B-58 Hustler was a pioneering aircraft whose history makes for a unique prism by which to examine the highs-and-lows of the 1960s as well as the nature of the Cold War. In my new book, CALL TO GLORY {ISBN 978-0-692-47545-4] it is shown that the B-58 Hustler actually produced a positive "economic" return [i.e., there were multiple spin-off benefits arising from the Hustler being a technology driver not reflected in the cost accounting data used for explaining its retirement], increased the versatility and strike capability of the overall SAC bomber fleet while reducing the overall fleet risk profile.

Doug Crow, 10.08.2015

My grandfather was an engineer that worked on "Project Quick Check" with Convair. This was a pod-mounted Hughes radar system that flew under a B-58. According to one site it was the 0668 aircraft that I believe is now on display at Little Rock Air force Base in Jacksonville, Ark. I also have a picture of this exact plane hanging on my office wall dated 08-29-61 numbered 50668. Would greatly appreciate any information on this project and this aircraft. Thanks!

Bill, 16.06.2015

I was stationed with the 43rd Bomb Wing (SAC) at Carswell and the trasferred with the 64th Bomb Sq as AIC of the Sq. I worked in both Combat Operations and the Alert barracks at Little Rock. It was a magnificant plane and nothing could beat watchin MITO takeof of this aircraft. I had 2 crew members killed from my Sq ejecting fro this aircraft at ground level. It was a beautiful and fast aircraft. Had an opportunity before leaving AF at Little Rock to ride this plane with my Sq CO, but was doing other things getting discharged and moving family back home. Always will regret not taking that ride.

Rod Robison, 16.03.2015

Ann Hale: I witnessed the B-58 crash your husband was in. I was 9 years old. My dad, Lt. Col. Elmer Robison, was a KC-135 pilot stationed at Bunker Hill. My friend and I were playing near the cornfield that separated the flight line and the housing where we lived. My friend shouted, "LOOK!" pointing toward the flight line. I turned to see a massive fireball. I'll never forget that scene.

robert etheredge, 22.02.2015

I was a crewchief @ LRAB, I was there from 1966 thru 1970,and 1974-1978,wonderful acft,will never forget it or team mates.........

robert etheredge, 22.02.2015

I was a crewchief @ LRAB, I was there from 1966 thru 1970,and 1974-1978,wonderful acft,will never forget it or team mates.........

Ken Walker, 06.02.2015

Hi Ms. Hale, I am Ken Walker and I was born in 1962 on Grissom AFB. My Dad is Lt. Col Wallace Joe Walker. He and my mom are in Austin now and I just sent them this link. Nice to come across it while random surfing this morning here in Asia.


rich, 02.02.2015

Thanks for your story, Ann.

Ann Hale, 27.01.2015

My husband was Bill Hale pilot on the B-58 at Grissom AFB. He retired as a LT. Col. and recently passed away. We were in the 305th Bomb Wing from 1955 to 19 70 when the airplane was sent to the boneyard. Bill crashed the first B-58 at Grissom on April 12 1962 on take off. Pete OConnor ejected and landed on the runway Bill ejected sideway out of the plane when it was 80feet from the ground his chute did open and he was not hurt. His navigator Duanne Dickey died in the accident. At the last minute when the B-58 was to leave Grissom forthe boneyard he was assigned to fly it out. So we use to say he crashed the first one at Grissom and flew the last one out. He entered the 305th Bomb Wing as a 2nd Lt. after Air Cadets and retired as a Lt. Col. from the Bomb Wing. He loved the B-58 said what a great plane it was. I was so proud to be a part of the great airplane. Ann Hale

William Londree, 02.12.2014

I was stationed at Cannon, AFB, NM in 1958 as an Airborne Radio Repairman. One Friday evening in December, 1968 I was one of several Airmen who stayed on Base for the week end and was requested to volunteer for a search and rescue operation involving a crashed B-58 Bomber about 38 miles NE of Cannon AFB. I was 18 and now 75 years old.

I recall picking up maps and other cockpit materials that were spread out over many miles of high desert terrain. We were in groups stretched out for miles looking for anything associated with the flight. We moved in a direction towards the final crash site where there was a huge crater. Parts of the landing gear were visible and no pieces seemed larger than a man's fist. One of the crew died in the crash and I heard that they passed Mach 1 on the way down. The one who dies was unable to eject. They found one still in his ejection seat on the ground, alive. I do not remember the fate of the third crew member. We were all very sad and depressed at the sight of all the damage. It was late in the evening when we were relieved of duty from this event.

I worked mostly on F-100 and F-101 Airborne Communications and Navigation systems and had witnessed several accidents near Cannon, AFB. The B-58 incident is still vivid in my memories.

Do you have any comments about this aircraft ?

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