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Posted 6/25/2009 Printable Fact Sheet
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Douglas B-23
Douglas B-23. (U.S. Air Force photo)
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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.

The museum has a B-23 in its collection.

Type Number built/
B-23 38 Improved B-18A

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

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