Specifications of the 24 (J) Liberator


Power-plant Four Pratt & Whitney R-1830-65 Twin Wasp fourteen-cylinder air-cooled radial engines with General Electric B-22 turbo-superchargers rated at 1200 hp at 2700 rpm for takeoff and maintaining this power as a military rating up to 31,800 feet.

Performance Maximum speed 300 mph at 30,000 feet, 277 mph at 20,000 feet. Maximum continuous speed: 278 mph at 25,000 feet. Usual combat operating speed was 180-215 mph at between 10,000 and 25,000 feet. Initial climb rate was 1025 feet per minute. At a takeoff weight of 56,000 pounds, an altitude of 20,000 feet could be reached in 25 minutes. Service ceiling of 28,000 feet at 56,000 pound takeoff weight. Range and endurance with a 5000-pound bomb load was 1700 miles in 7.3 hours at 25,000 feet (all-up weight of 61,500 pounds) with 2364 US gallons of fuel. Landing speed 95 mph (light), 125 mph (loaded).

Weights 38,000 pounds empty, 56,000 pounds combat, 71,200 pounds maximum overload. 2364 US gallons of fuel in main tanks, plus 450 gallons in auxiliary wing tanks and 800 gallons in extra tanks fitted in bomb bay if required.

Dimensions Wingspan 110 feet 0 inches, length 64 feet 2 inches, height 18 feet 0 inches, wing area 1048 square feet.

Accommodation Crew was normally ten (pilot, copilot, bombardier, nose gunner, navigator, radio operator, ball turret gunner, two waist gunners, and tail gunner).

Armament Ten 0.50-inch Browning machine guns in nose, upper ventral, and tail turrets and in waist positions. Maximum internal bomb load was 8000 pounds. Two 4000 pound bombs could be carried on external racks, one underneath each inner wing. Maximum short range bomb load was 12,800 pounds (by using under wing racks), but normal offensive load was 5000 pounds.

Courtesy: Steven Puhl..Ford Willow Run B-24 Plant Historian (Retired)