• Hi Guest! Forum rules have been updated. All users please read here.

RAF Boeing Washington B.1 (B-29) with Grand Slam bombs

frank

ACCESS: Top Secret
Joined
May 20, 2006
Messages
617
Reaction score
13
I've looked thru every B-29 book I have or have seen & Googled with no luck. I've read that some of the B-29s sent to the RAF were equipped with racks at the wing roots to carry a Grand Slam bomb under each wing. ISTR also that some USAF a/c were modified as well. I've not been able to find pics or drawings of this installation or use of. Does anyone know if this practice was actually done? Has anyone ever come across any drawings or info? Thanks.
 

sferrin

ACCESS: USAP
Senior Member
Joined
Jun 3, 2011
Messages
13,389
Reaction score
1,431
this would be the page you're looking for but it looks like all the pictures got pulled.

http://members.aol.com/nukeinfo2/

B-29 with two Tall Boys. (From that page.)
 

Attachments

  • B29withdualTallboyinstallationdetail2.jpg
    B29withdualTallboyinstallationdetail2.jpg
    32.7 KB · Views: 344

frank

ACCESS: Top Secret
Joined
May 20, 2006
Messages
617
Reaction score
13
Thanks!


sferrin said:
this would be the page you're looking for but it looks like all the pictures got pulled.

http://members.aol.com/nukeinfo2/

B-29 with two Tall Boys. (From that page.)
 

kitnut617

ACCESS: Secret
Joined
Dec 15, 2006
Messages
374
Reaction score
91
this would be the page you're looking for but it looks like all the pictures got pulled.


B-29 with two Tall Boys. (From that page.)

Actually, those are two Grand Slams. I've got a number of photos from the Boeing Archive (with licenses) and one of them shows a B-29 with a T.12 mounted (which is a bomb twice as heavy as a Grand Slam) A way to tell what bomb is being carried is by the number of chains holding the bomb to the rack, two chains means a Grand Slam. The B.29 could carry a Tall boy internally.
 

kitnut617

ACCESS: Secret
Joined
Dec 15, 2006
Messages
374
Reaction score
91
I've got a high resolution photo of that picture from Boeing, when you look it over with a magnifying glass, there's a guy's face looking out that side bubble window, clear as day ---

You'll notice the notch in the trailing edge of the flap there too ---

As an aside, my Dad served in 617 squadron during the period that they were using the Grand Slam, reason for my interest in the bomb.

The nice thing about using the B-29 was it could get to the height that Barnes Wallace had designed the bombs to be dropped at.
 

Arjen

It's turtles all the way down
Senior Member
Joined
Nov 6, 2010
Messages
2,722
Reaction score
499
I downloaded the image K_M refers to
. Lancaster bomb.jpeg
 

Foo Fighter

I came, I saw, I drank some tea (and had a bun).
Senior Member
Joined
Jul 19, 2016
Messages
1,639
Reaction score
569
Tallboy had modified doors while the Grand slam had the doors removed and modifications to allow the fuselage to be cleared on release.
 

Arjen

It's turtles all the way down
Senior Member
Joined
Nov 6, 2010
Messages
2,722
Reaction score
499
So it does. The caption disappears the moment you open the image, I missed it.
 

kitnut617

ACCESS: Secret
Joined
Dec 15, 2006
Messages
374
Reaction score
91
There's considerable difference in bomb size between the two, I don't have a picture of real one together, but I do have this in 1/72 scale. The really big one is a T.12 made from dimensions I found on a website about the T.12.
 

Attachments

  • Project Box 005.jpg
    Project Box 005.jpg
    144.1 KB · Views: 168

kitnut617

ACCESS: Secret
Joined
Dec 15, 2006
Messages
374
Reaction score
91
This is the photo of the T.12 slung under a B-29. Notice the fairing on the underside of the wing root where the spars had to be re-enforced to take the weight.

EDIT: Photo was provided by Boeing Archives with a license which doesn't restrict me where I use it.
 

Attachments

  • T12 & Grandslam 001.jpg
    T12 & Grandslam 001.jpg
    159.2 KB · Views: 161
Last edited:

nuuumannn

Cannae be ar*ed changing my personal text
Joined
Oct 22, 2011
Messages
213
Reaction score
351
I don't have a picture of real one together,

I took this many years ago at Brooklands Museum - scanned from a 35mm photo. Unfortunately the bombs are now no longer in such a photogenic arrangement, although they are together in the same building. You can really appreciate the difference in size between the Tall Boy and the Grand Slam when they are together.
 

Attachments

  • Wallis Bombs.jpg
    Wallis Bombs.jpg
    286.3 KB · Views: 101

EwenS

ACCESS: Confidential
Joined
Feb 20, 2010
Messages
126
Reaction score
181
I don't have a picture of real one together,

I took this many years ago at Brooklands Museum - scanned from a 35mm photo. Unfortunately the bombs are now no longer in such a photogenic arrangement, although they are together in the same building. You can really appreciate the difference in size between the Tall Boy and the Grand Slam when they are together.

The bomb with the black and white markings isn’t a 12,000lb Tallboy but a 4,000lb Tallboy Small created in late 1943 to test the concept. It just serves to emphasise the size of Grand Slam.


Brooklands have examples of all the Barnes Wallis bombs.
 

kitnut617

ACCESS: Secret
Joined
Dec 15, 2006
Messages
374
Reaction score
91
Thanks for posting that EwenS, I was going to say that's more of a comparison between a Tallboy and T12. Would you know if there was any plans to put Tallboy Small into service ?
 

nuuumannn

Cannae be ar*ed changing my personal text
Joined
Oct 22, 2011
Messages
213
Reaction score
351
The bomb with the black and white markings isn’t a 12,000lb Tallboy but a 4,000lb Tallboy Small created in late 1943 to test the concept. It just serves to emphasise the size of Grand Slam.

Thanks for that, Ewen.

Brooklands have examples of all the Barnes Wallis bombs.

Indeed it does, although the last time I was there two years ago, I only saw the Grand Slam and Tall Boy Small on display near each other in the stratosphere chamber building.
 

EwenS

ACCESS: Confidential
Joined
Feb 20, 2010
Messages
126
Reaction score
181
Thanks for posting that EwenS, I was going to say that's more of a comparison between a Tallboy and T12. Would you know if there was any plans to put Tallboy Small into service ?

According to “A Hell of a Bomb” by Stephen Flower the Tallboy Small was designed to prove the ballistics as a step up from firing miniatures from a gun down a gypsum mine and before moving on to produce Tallboy (or Tallboy Medium) and Grand Slam (or Tallboy Large).

One thing learned from the first drops of the 4000lb version was the need to angle the fins to generate spin and improve accuracy. Only 12 were manufactured with the first drop was in Dec 1943 by the AAEE, operating from Boscombe Down, using the range at Orfordness. More tests with them were made in April 1944.

The odd thing is that the 22000 pounder was designed first, then scaled down to 4000lb for the test articles and 12000lb.

Flower’s book was later republished as
 

kitnut617

ACCESS: Secret
Joined
Dec 15, 2006
Messages
374
Reaction score
91
Thanks Ewen, my Dad served in 617 sqn from 1944 to 46, he was interested into anything related like that but I don't remember him mentioning anything about the Tallboy Small so I was very interested in it. I'll keep an eye out for that book too.
What I have read about the Grand Slam it was scaled down because the Lancaster couldn't get it up to the altitude Wallis design it to be dropped at, somewhere around 30-35,000ft. The B-29 tests showed what it could really do when dropped from that altitude.
 

taildragger

You can count on me - I won a contest
Joined
Nov 2, 2008
Messages
309
Reaction score
179
I wonder how it was intended that the B-29 would drop the twin Tall Boy load in combat.
- If dropped simultaneously, I'd think that the detonation of the first to hit might impair the effectiveness of the second. They could be configured to separate during the fall, but that would reduce accuracy.
- If the drop was staggered, aircraft motion after release of the 1st 22,000 lb. bomb would complicate aiming of the 2nd.
 
Last edited:

EwenS

ACCESS: Confidential
Joined
Feb 20, 2010
Messages
126
Reaction score
181
AIUI the only operational outfit was with the 19th BG in Korea using single Tarzon bombs. Anything else was purely an experimental fit. That would allow a reduced fuel load to keep total weight within the B-29 max take off weight of 135,000lb.
 

Similar threads

Top