Sheet #

Microscale 48-045 for B-29 Superfortress




See review

Review By:

Scott Van Aken



When the B-29 was initially developed, it was part of the VLRB (very long range bomber) program that the USAAC was developing in the late 1930s. Building the bomber was a real stretch of technology for Boeing. It had a number of features that were new to mass produced aircraft. Primary one was the pressurized crew compartments. It was also reliant on untried engines. The remote controlled turrets were also a new factor. Earlier attempts at these only succeeded in making the gunners ill. A change to a wider field of vision is what successfully took care of that problem.

Initial B-29s were rife with teething troubles. Most of them having to do with the engines, which were prone to catching fire. A man with a fire extinguisher was required at each engine during engine start. Not exactly a huge confidence builder! The plane was so large that there were few places in the combat zones that could handle such an aircraft. You couldn't just level a field and put PSP down as it wouldn't hold the weight of the plane. It needed specially built runways.

Jumping to the end of the story, the plane managed to take care of all its problems and was ready at the right time to provide the bombing capability needed in the Pacific war. It also soldiered on to be available in Korea at a time when the USAF did not have a heavy bomber that it could use. 

This sheet provides markings for three B-29s. As you can imagine, there are only the special markings for each plane. All others will have to come from the kit or other sources. 

First is 'Joltin Josie' from the 498th BG. Like the others, it is basically overall natural metal.

'Thunder Bird' from the 462nd BG is the next plane. This one has some additional color with its red rudder.

The final B-29 is 'Battlin' Betty III' from the 498th BG. This one has later group markings and a gloss black underside. By this time the 498th was using a common fuselage stripe for the aircraft name and no nose art.

If you have any desire to build the huge Monogram B-29 kit, any of these markings will look good on it.

Review copy courtesy of  Drew Nix. Thanks Drew!!

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