Consolidated PB4Y-2 Privateer
In May 1943, the U. S. Navy contracted with Consolidated-Vultee
Aircraft Company to build the PB4Y-2 Privateer with a signle tail fin verus the double tail PB4Y-1 Liberator. Initially, the new aircraft was dubbed the "Sea Liberator" but instead was nicknamed "Privateer".
Since approximately 50 percent of
the bombers internal components were changed and the belly turret
deleted, it was essentially a new aircraft. In addition to the single fin, seven feet was added
to the length, and two Martin upper turrets and twin Erco waist
blisters were installed. The defensive armament of the Privateer was not diminished with
it having twelve .50 caliber machine guns versus to ten on the
The PB4Y-2 was a heavily
armed gun platform and could readily defend itself from fighter
attack while unleashing punishing blows on Japanese shipping and
shore installations. In April 1945, some Privateers were modified
to carry the Bat and were designated as the PB4Y-2B. In January
1945, the first squadron outfitted with the Privateer arrived
in the Pacific.
A total of 739 were built by Consolidated Aircraft Corporation at San Diego.
Engine 4 x Pratt & Whitney R-1830-94
Length 74' 7"
Height 30' 1"
Maximum Speed 237 mph
Range 2,800 miles
Armament 12 x 50 caliber machine guns
Bombload 12,800 lbs of bombs