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American Combat Planes of the 20th Century is an incredible reference for anyone who is interested in any American Combat Plane History.   There are 758 pages and 1700 b/w photos in this substantial labor of love by Ray Wagner, who has been passionately researching and writing about aircraft for over 50 years.   Whether you are already familiar with his past works, or just discovering this accomplished author for the first time... This is the book that you've been waiting for!

If you'd like to see the book's   Table of Contents ... Click here.   You can also browse the entire   Index Section   to get an idea of the extensive amount of information that is covered within this book.

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A- 1 Eaton     A- 4 Skyhawk     A- 6 & A- 7     Air Weapons     AV- 8 to A- 10     A- 20 Havoc     A- 22 Martin Maryland     A- 23 Martin Baltimore     A- 24 Douglas     A- 26 Douglas Invader     Attack Planes     B- 2A, F-111, F-117 Stealth    B- 17 Flying Fortress     B- 24 Liberator     B- 25 North American     B- 26 Marauder     B- 29 Superfortress     B- 32 Dominator     B- 35 Flying Wing     B- 36     B- 47 Stratojet     B- 50 Boeing     B- 52 Stratofortress     B- 57 Canberra     B- 58 Hustler     Biplanes     Biplanes, Army Pursuits     Bombers, B- 70 to Stealth     Bombers, First Big     Curtiss Falcon     CO- 1     DH- 4 De Havilland     F3D- Douglas Skyknight    F3H- McDonnell Demon    F4D- 1 Skyray    F4F Grumman Wildcats    F- 4U Corsair    F6F Grumman    F7F Grumman    F7U Vought    F9F G. Cougar    F9F G. Panther    F- 16 Fighting Falcon    F- 84     F- 86 Sabre    F- 89 to F-94    F- 100 to F-108    First Fighters    Flying Boats    GAX    Iraq to Afghanistan    Martin Bombers    Missile Era Fighters    Navy Fighers    Navy Flying Boats    O- 2 Douglas     P- 35 Seversky     P- 36 to 42 Curtiss     P- 38 Lightning    P- 39 Airacobra    P- 40 Line    P- 47 Thunderbolt    P- 51 Mustang Fighter    P- 61 Black Widow    P- 63 Kingcobra    P- 79 to P-81    P- 82 Twin Mustang    SB2C Helldiver    TBF-TBM Avenger    Thomas-Morse    Torpedo Planes    V- 11 Vultee    XB -28    XP -48 / 77   

Fighters For The Missile Era


F4-S, F-4G, F4-M


Page 6

Phantom in Foreign Service
McDONNELL F-4S Britain announced an order for the F-4K for the Royal Navy on February 27, 1964, and for the F-4M for the RAF on February 2, 1965. Both were to use British-made Rolls-Royce Spey engines rated at 20,515-pound thrust, with almost half the cost in British-supplied equipment and parts. The first of two YF-4Ks was flown June 27, 1966, with 50 F-4K (Phantom FG.Mk 1) arriving in Britain beginning April 1968.

No 893 Squadron served aboard Britainís last large aircraft carrier, the Ark Royal, from 1970 until its final cruise ended December 4, 1978. To fit this carrierís elevators and short deck, the radome could be folded back, and the nose landing gear extension was increased to increase the angle of attack at takeoff. Increased power and enlarged air intakes improved the F-4Kís takeoff, acceleration, and combat radius, although top speed decreased from Mach 2.2 to 1.9. Armament was similar to the F-4J. McDONNELL F-4M

The RAFís first YF-4M flew February 17, 1967, and the production F-4M on December 26. From July 1968 to August 1969, the RAF received two YF-4M and 116 Ms, which they designated Phantom FGR.Mk 2, as well as 28 of the Ks, and eight squadrons flew Phantoms in 1978. During the Falklands crisis in 1984, 15 surplus F-4Js were added to the RAF inventory. The last FGR.Mk 2 retired from No. 74 Squadron in October 1992.

Iran was the next to order Phantoms on September 30, 1966, and got 32 new F-4Ds, which first reached Teheran in September 1968, as well as 177 F-4Es and 16 RF-4Es delivered from April 1971 to December 1978. The Shah of Iran was considered to be the strongest obstacle to communist expansion in the Middle East.

The Islamic revolution removed the Shah and turned against Americans, so a February 28, 1979, order stopped production on 47 more Phantoms. Iraq attacked Iran in September 1980 and F-4 pilots began claims for at least 80 kills. After the August 1988 ceasefire, some 95 Phantoms remained, many grounded with parts shortages.


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