New Boeing “Death Angel” to be World’s Fastest Bomber (Aug, 1931)

I just think “Death Angel” is a cool name for a plane.

New Boeing “Death Angel” to be World’s Fastest Bomber

THE latest addition to Uncle Sam’s air forces is a veritable flying fortress-Dubbed the “Death Angel” because she is capable of attaining highest speed of any bomber and can carry a ton of explosives, four machine guns fore and aft and a crew of five men, the giant Boeing bombing plane shown above will prove one of the nation’s most fearful weapons. The plane has a wing spread of 86 feet and is powered by two 575 h.p. motors mounted in the wings.

7 comments
  1. Toronto says: September 10, 20087:14 am

    I think that’s a Boeing “B-9″. Perhaps they thought B9 was too benign sounding.

    (Civilian version was 215 – before they started using ’7′s.)

  2. Greg in Seattle says: September 10, 200810:27 am

    In 1930, Boeing created the revolutionary Monomail, which made traditional biplane construction a design of the past. The Monomail wing was set lower, was smooth, made entirely of metal and had no struts (cantilevered construction). The retractable landing gear, the streamlined fuselage and the engine covered by an antidrag cowling added up to an advanced, extremely aerodynamic design.

    The Monomail Model 200 was a mail plane, and the Model 221 was a six-passenger transport. Both were later revised for transcontinental passenger service as Model 221As.

    The major drawback of the Monomail was that its design was too advanced for the engines and propellers of the time. The airplane required a low-pitch propeller for takeoff and climb and a high-pitch propeller to cruise. By the time the variable-pitch propeller and more powerful engines were available, the Monomail was being replaced by newer, multiengine planes it had inspired.

    The Boeing B-9 bomber was the earliest plane based on the Monomail design. It had a top speed of 186 mph and could outrun the fighters of the day by 5 mph. The monoplane bomber reached this speed although it had a five-person crew (in open cockpits) and carried a 2,400-pound bomb load.

    Boeing built the YB-9 prototype bombers at company expense to show their design potential to the military. This high-speed aircraft inspired other airplane manufacturers to launch a new generation of bombers, such as the Martin B-10. Because fighters were expected to be faster than bombers, the B-9 also led to the first monoplane fighters.

    First flight: April 13, 1931
    Model number: 214/215
    Classification: Bomber
    Span: 76 feet
    Length: 51 feet 5 inches
    Gross weight: 13,919 pounds
    Top speed: 186 mph
    Cruising speed: 158 mph
    Range: 1,150 miles
    Ceiling: 20,150 feet
    Power: Two 600-horsepower P&W Hornet engines
    Accommodation: 5 crew
    Armament: 2 machine guns, 2,400-pound bomb load

  3. LightningRose says: September 10, 200812:09 pm

    Interesting. Many online sources credit Seattle Times reporter Richard Williams with coining the term “flying fortress” in 1935 when describing what would eventually be known as the B-17, but here the term is used in 1931.

  4. Essjay` says: September 10, 20086:24 pm

    Does anybody name their product “Death” today? Interesting.

    For big projects, they seem to prefer “Peace” and “Protect” and such.

    Not “Death” and “Destroy”.

    If the book has not been written already, the topic is waiting.

  5. Torgo says: September 10, 20086:58 pm

    Who would win, Death Angel or Rotolactor?

  6. Arglebarglefarglegleep says: August 18, 20107:33 pm

    About naming weapon systems; ever since the War Department became the Department of Defense, perhaps even before, the only people who seem to use violence and death in names are the actual groups that deal it out such as army units. Big weapon programs like the Peace Maker shy away from descriptive names probably due to the political blowback names like that cause. I can see liberal senators voting for Baby Killer Mines and School Vaporizer Bombs.

  7. Firebrand38 says: August 18, 20108:35 pm

    Arglebarglefarglegleep: using the term “Baby Killer” is pretty screwed up. That’s a pretty emotionally charged phrase with a lot of negative history.

    Let me tell you something, it’s pretty f****d up that you think weapons are acquired for the purpose of killing babies and bombing schools. It’s even more f****d up you think that you’re funny doing it.

    Yeah, liberals would find it difficult meaning that conservatives would find it easy?

    You have got to be from California.

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