C-108 Flying Fortress


C-108 Flying Fortress

:"C-108" redirects here. For the freshwater catfish, see Corydoras xinguensis" infobox Aircraft
name =C-108 Flying Fortress
type = Transport aircraft
manufacturer =Boeing / Lockheed-Vega / Wright-Patterson AFB


caption =
designer =
first flight = 1943
introduced = 1943
retired = 1945
status =
primary user = United States Army Air Force
more users =
produced =
number built = 4
unit cost =
developed from = B-17 Flying Fortress
variants with their own articles =

C-108 Flying Fortress was the designation of four United States B-17 Flying Fortress heavy bombers which were converted to transport aircraft during World War II.

Design and development

;XC-108The first C-108 built (designated XC-108) was a B-17E ("41-2593") converted to a V.I.P. transport for General Douglas MacArthur in 1943. With the exception of the nose and tail turrets, all armament was removed, as was all armor. The interior of the plane was made into a flying office for MacArthur, with extra windows, cooking facilities, and living space. To facilitate entry and exit, a drop-down door with steps was installed in the rear fuselage.

;YC-108A similar conversion as in XC-108 was made on a B-17F-40-VE ("42-6036").

;XC-108AIn March 1944, another B-17E ("41-2595") was converted to a cargo aircraft designated XC-108A. Hoping to convert obsolete bombers into cargo aircraft, the United States Army Air Forces initiated a remanufacturing station at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. The plane was stripped of armament, armor, and other military equipment. Crew locations were shifted, and the nose was modified to provide space for cargo and/or personnel. The cockpit was accessed via the crawlway under it or through the hinged solid nose cone that had replaced the original glazed bombardier station. To increase cargo space, several bulkheads were removed and the bomb bay doors were sealed closed. This allowed much of the fuselage volume to be used to carry cargo or personnel.

;XC-108BA B-17F "42-30190" was converted (XC-108B) to tanker service. As in the XC-108A, it was devoid of armor and weapons, and the fuselage was modified to make space for its cargo. The fuselage was filled with fuel tanks.

Operational history

;XC-108Was personal VIP transport aircraft of the General Douglas MacArthur in 1943.

;XC-108ABased in India, the XC-108A was used to fly material and personnel over the Himalayas to the B-29 base in Chengdu, China. Due to chronic engine difficulties, it proved a difficult cargo plane. In October 1944, it was returned to the United States. By the end of the war, it was disassembled and left in a junkyard in Maine. In 1985, a vintage airplane buff acquired the pieces, and they were transported to an airport in Illinois. The owner hopes to restore it to B-17E configuration, which would make it the only surviving B-17E.

;XC-108BXC-108B was to be used in the same line of work as the XC-108A: carrying material (in this case, fuel) over the Himalayas to the base in Chengdu.

Variants

;XC-108:B-17E converted to VIP transport standard for General Douglas MacArthur.

;YC-108:B-17F converted to VIP transport standard for General Douglas MacArthur.

;XC-108A:B-17E converted to cargo or troop transport standard.

;XC-108B:B-17F converted for service as a tanker.

Two other cargo transports and VIP transports were made from the B-17.

;CB-17G:Troop transport version capable of carrying up to 64 troops, 25 built.

;VB-17G:VIP transport version for high level staff officers, 8 built.

Operators

;flag|United States|1912
*United States Army Air Force

pecifications (XC-108)

aircraft specifications
plane or copter?=plane
jet or prop?=prop
ref=
crew=five (pilot, copilot, navigator, tail gunner, nose gunner)
capacity=General and staff
payload main=
payload alt=
length main= 74 ft 4 in
length alt= 22.7 m
span main= 103 ft 10 in
span alt= 31.6 m
height main= 19 ft 1 in
height alt= 5.8 m
area main= 1,527 ft²
area alt= 141.9 m²
airfoil=
empty weight main=
empty weight alt=
loaded weight main=
loaded weight alt=
useful load main=
useful load alt=
max takeoff weight main=
max takeoff weight alt=
more general=
engine (prop)= Wright R-1820-65
type of prop=turbo-supercharged radials
number of props=4
power main= 1,200 hp
power alt= 900 kW
power original=
max speed main=300 mph
max speed alt= 480 km/h
cruise speed main=
cruise speed alt=
stall speed main=
stall speed alt=
never exceed speed main=
never exceed speed alt=
range main=
range alt=
ceiling main=
ceiling alt=
climb rate main=
climb rate alt=
loading main=
loading alt=
thrust/weight=
power/mass main=
power/mass alt=
more performance=
armament=
* 4 × .50 caliber M2 Browning machine guns in nose and tail turret
avionics=

References

* Jablonski, Edward. "Flying Fortress". Doubleday, 1965. (ISBN 0-385-03855-0)
* Wagner, Ray. "American Combat Planes". Doubleday, 1982. (ISBN 0-930083-17-2)
* [http://home.att.net/~jbaugher2/b17.html Encyclopedia of American Aircraft]
* [http://www.wpafb.af.mil/museum/air_power/ap16.htm USAF Museum]

External links

* [http://home.att.net/~jbaugher2/b17.html Encyclopedia of American Aircraft]
* [http://www.wpafb.af.mil/museum/air_power/ap16.htm USAF Museum]

ee also

aircontent
related=
B-17 Flying Fortress

similar aircraft=
C-109 Liberator

sequence=
C-105 -
C-106 -
C-107 -C-108 -
C-109 -
C-110 -
C-111

lists=
* List of military aircraft of the United States
* B-17 Flying Fortress variants

see also=


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