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F-82 Twin Mustang

Lockheedís magnificent P-38 Lightning was one of the most recognizable fighter planes in World War II. Few twin-engine fighters during that period were agile enough to survive for long in combat, but the Lightning fought successfully in all fronts, and its high speed, long range and heavy firepower proved to be especially lethal against Japanese forces in the Pacific. Its unusual twin-engine, twin-boom configuration continues to make it a favorite today among modelers and airplane buffs worldwide.

The immense distances between islands in the Pacific Theater required a fighter type that could fly for hours between islands, yet have its pilot fresh for combat at any time. North Americanís solution was its XP-82 Twin Mustang, essentially two modified P-51H fuselages combined in a twin-boom configuration, carrying two pilots to share the tasks of flying and fighting. Although the Twin Mustang arrived too late for World War II, it joined the Air Force as the F-82 escort fighter and night fighter, and went on to a successful combat career in the Korean War.

Specifications

Manufacturer: Lockheed Aircraft Corporation
Span: 51 ft. 3 in.
Length: 38 ft. 1 in.
Height: 13 ft. 8 in.
Weight: 24,800 lbs. max.
Armament:
  • Six .50-cal. machine guns,
  • 25 five-inch rockets, and
  • 4,000 lbs. of bombs
  • Engines: Two Packard V-1650s of 1,380 hp. ea.
    Crew:Two
    Cost: $228,000
    Maximum speed: 482 mph
    Cruising speed: 280 mph
    Range: 2,200 miles
    Service Ceiling: 39,900 ft

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