The B-23 is a twin-engine bomber developed as a successor to the Douglas B-18A. First flown in July 1939, the B-23 incorporated many features of the Douglas DC-3 commercial transport. Although it was much faster than the B-18 and was the first operational Army bomber equipped with a tail gun, the Dragon was soon outclassed by more modern bombers such as the North American B-25 and the Martin B-26. As a result, only 38 B-23s were built.
The B-23s were never used in combat during World War II. Instead they served in secondary roles as reconnaissance, training, transport and test-bed aircraft. Some of the Dragons used in transport service were redesignated UC-67s.
TECHNICAL NOTES: Armament: Three .30-cal. M-2 machine guns, one .50-cal. M-2 machine gun, plus 4,000 lbs. of bombs carried internally Engines: Two Wright R-2600-3s of 1,600 hp each Maximum speed: 282 mph Cruising speed: 210 mph Range: 1,400 miles Service ceiling: 31,600 ft. Span: 92 ft. 0 in. Length: 58 ft. 6 in. Height: 18 ft. 6 in. Weight: 32,400 lbs. maximum Crew: Six Serial numbers: 39-27 to 39-64