Boeing B-29 Superfortress Development, History, Assembly Plants, & Production Numbers

Our Tribute to the B-29

View our website with complete coverage about the B-29 and B-50 ...

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This section is meant to be a tribute to those who designed & built the B-29 Superfortress, the crews who flew her, and those who have worked tirelessly to preserve this incredible plane and its history.

Boeing began work on a pressurized long-range bomber in 1938. In December 1939, the Army Air Corps issued a formal specification for a so called "superbomber", capable of delivering 20,000 lbs of bombs to a target 2,667 miles distant, at a speed of 400 mph.

The first three aircraft built were identified as the XB-29, with triple-bladed propellers.

Boeing XB-29, S/N 41-0002, the first B-29 prototype, seen at Boeing Field in Seattle, on October 1, 1942
Boeing XB-29, S/N 41-002, seen at Boeing Field in Seattle, on October 1, 1942

B-29

The most widely produced Superfortress model was the B-29, of which 2,537 aircraft were built.

The B-29 featured the first ever fully pressurized nose and cockpit in a bomber; an aft area for the crew was also pressurized. Since the bomb bays were not pressurized, a pressurized tunnel was devised to connect the fore and aft crew areas. A retractable tail bumper was provided for tail protection during nose-high takeoffs and landings.

B-29 Superfortress Specifications

Armament: Eight .50-cal. machine guns in remote controlled turrets plus two .50-cal. machine guns and one 20mm cannon in tail; 20,000 lbs. of bombs
Engines: Four Wright R-3350s of 2,200 hp each
Maximum speed:
357 mph
Cruising speed: 220 mph
Range: 3,700 miles
Ceiling: 33,600 ft.
Span: 141 ft. 3 in.
Length: 99 ft.
Height: 27 ft. 9 in.
Weight: 133,500 lbs. maximum

B-29 Superfortress Assembly Plants and Production Numbers

A total of 3,970 production B-29s were built, at these locations:

Production
B-29
B-29A
B-29B
Production
B-29s Built
1,122
1,122
1,644
1,644
357
311
668
536
536
2,537
1,122
311
3,970

Boeing Wichita Plant, inside view of B-29s on the assembly line
Boeing Wichita Plant, inside view of B-29s on the assembly line
Inside the Boeing Wichita Kansas Plant, B-29 Superfortress assembly line
Inside the Boeing Wichita Kansas Plant, B-29 assembly line
Boeing Wichita Plant, aerial view of completed B-29s parked on tarmac
with part of the original Stearman Aircraft plant and water tower in the background
Boeing Wichita Plant, aerial view of completed B-29s parked on tarmac with part of the original Stearman Aircraft plant in the background

USAF B-29 Assembly Line Photos

Boeing B-29 Superfortress Assembly Line
Boeing B-29 Assembly Line (Photo courtesy of the U.S. Air Force)
Boeing B-29 Superfortress pressurized cockpit sections, showing connectors for pressurized tunnel over bomb bays
Boeing B-29 pressurized cockpit assembly, showing connectors for pressurized tunnel
Partially completed wing assembly of the Boeing B-29 Superfortress
Partially completed wing assembly of the Boeing B-29
Boeing B-29 Superfortress Assembly Line
Boeing B-29 Assembly Line (Photo courtesy of the U.S. Air Force)
Boeing B-29 Superfortress Assembly Line
Boeing B-29 Assembly Line (Photo courtesy of the U.S. Air Force)
Boeing B-29 Superfortress Assembly Line
Boeing B-29 Assembly Line (Photo courtesy of the U.S. Air Force)
The completed aircraft: The Boeing B-29 Superfortress
Boeing B-29 Superfortress

 

YouTube Video of Surviving B-29 Superfortress Bombers in the U.S. Today

 

Link to our website with detailed coverage on the B-29 and B-50 ...

www.B29-Superfortress.com