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Martin XB-51

J_Matthews129

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Hello all! The XB-51 has long been one of my favorite experimental aircraft. It's one of two planes for which I've made tribute/heritage artwork, which I'd like to share with you here.

Please come visit my website at: https://onetwentynineblog.wordpress.com/ and you can read a bit of the plane's history and see some of the process involved in creating my artwork.
 

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J_Matthews129

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Thank you both very much! I'm going to complete the camouflage texture at some point. It needs to look a bit dirtier/grungier. The markings were a total "what if", of course. The tail codes and nose art were from the 13th Bomb Squadron, which had flown combat missions in Vietnam. The nose are was actually cribbed from their B-26 Invaders, but I thought I'd carry it over to these ships. I was imagining what the B-51 might have looked like had it entered the inventory instead of the B-57 Canberra. I picked the 13th because they had flown the Canberra, which won out over the XB-51, and because they're currently flying B-2s out of Whiteman AFB in my home state of Missouri. I'm glad you both enjoyed the renderings so much. Here are a couple more. I put others in a gallery on my website, if anyone wants to see them.

Thanks again!
 

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robunos

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Nice work!
Regarding the Vietnam era images, at some point after commencing operations (I'll have to check my references for when) the 13th (and 8th) BS switched to black undersurfaces, as they were mainly operating at night . . .

cheers,
Robin.
 

J_Matthews129

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Hi Robin,

Thanks for the compliment. The 13th and the 8th were definitely flying B-57s with black undersides. This is all a matter of artistic license, of course, and while the markings and nose art do, in a way, pay some tribute to the 13th, it's totally fictitious since they obviously never flew 51s.

Just a very big "what if?".

I had actually created texture maps for the plane with a black underside and gray. I decided the gray looked better (to me, anyway), so that's the way I kept it. If I had rendered a B-57 of the 13th, the camo scheme would be totally authentic, believe me :D

Thanks so much for taking a look, and your kind compliments.

All the best,

-John

robunos said:
Nice work!
Regarding the Vietnam era images, at some point after commencing operations (I'll have to check my references for when) the 13th (and 8th) BS switched to black undersurfaces, as they were mainly operating at night . . .

cheers,
Robin.
 

J_Matthews129

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This is a 36x12 profile illustration I made for the XB-51:



If anyone might be interested, this is available as a print here:
https://www.zazzle.com/martin_xb_51_profile_poster-228957087028356023

I actually ordered one of these for myself so I could gauge the quality of the prints they were making using my artwork. Excellent print quality on the semi-gloss poster paper I chose. Time from order to delivery was eight days (one of which was a holiday).
 

Ray

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I have always wondered why the XB-51 fuselage is so large. There is more than enough volume for fuel and bomb load so what was the rest of it for?
 

_Del_

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Ray said:
I have always wondered why the XB-51 fuselage is so large. There is more than enough volume for fuel and bomb load so what was the rest of it for?
Main gear, rotary bay, and an engine in the fuselage (and fuel, fuel, and more fuel for the thirsty turbojets - only had a little over half the combat radius of a B-57!)
 

J_Matthews129

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Ray said:
I have always wondered why the XB-51 fuselage is so large. There is more than enough volume for fuel and bomb load so what was the rest of it for?
Hi Ray! Every military aircraft I've ever seen seems as though it's 2X to 3X smaller on the inside. If you were able to enter one of these you'd see there's no room for anything. One pilot, one LORAN operator, guns, ammunition, fuel (not enough of that, since the B-57 carried much more and this was a thirsty plane to begin with), bomb load, avionics, inboard turbojet and intake system... Here's an interior arrangement drawing:



They could have made it bigger, in fact, to have carried more fuel. Couldn't carry fuel in the wings since they were variable incidence and were able to move.

Thanks for looking here!
 

Ray

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J_Matthews129 Thanks for your response. It does appear they used all available space in the fuselage. Didn't realize it had a variable incidence wing. I have some up close experience with F-105's, F-4's and B-52's. All were well stuffed with stuff. (Stuff is a technical term.)
 

J_Matthews129

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Ray said:
J_Matthews129 Thanks for your response. It does appear they used all available space in the fuselage. Didn't realize it had a variable incidence wing. I have some up close experience with F-105's, F-4's and B-52's. All were well stuffed with stuff. (Stuff is a technical term.)
Haha... Yes, "stuff" is a very good technical term! Were you maintenance or aircrew for the aircraft you mentioned? I am, in fact, working on an F-105 right now to use for some upcoming artwork.





This is currently just a work in progress. I modeled detail to the inside of the airbrake panels yesterday. I'll be working on the canopy today I think (after my 11 year old's little league all-star game this afternoon).
 

Antonio

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Really beatiful model, congratulations. Which software do you use to model it?
 

Geist

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Good work on XB 51.
By the way it has many improvement generated by the germans such as T tail, engines beside the fuselage and bicycle landing gear.
Cheers,
Daniel
 

sienar

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Very nice work!

It'd be neat to see the B-51 with the 'tactical' nose and underwing stores.
 
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