Martin B-26 Marauder

Aircraft Background:
The Marauder, a medium-range bomber, posted the lowest loss rate, about 1%, of USAAF combat planes during World War II. The B-26 was used most effectively for bombing raids on railroad depots, bridges, and airfields, and it developed an excellent reputation as a dam buster

Our Aircraft's History:
MAPS B-26, the 99th Marauder built, crash landed in British Columbia, Canada, on January 16, 1942, five weeks and five days after Pearl Harbor was bombed. Efforts are being made by several members of the MAPS Air Museum to restore it to flying condition. A book about the crash landing, including a personal account by co-pilot Lt. Howard Smiley, is available in the MAPS gift shop. Out of the Wilderness: Restoring a Relic was written by Lee B. Morrison of New Philadelphia, Ohio.


1995 200

As is too often the case, when a part of an airframe is damaged or missing, often there is no option but to recreate, from scratch, the missing parts.  In this example, we're looking at internal ribs for the B-26 Marauder's ailerons.  These parts were either missing, or damaged beyond repair, so the restoration team had no choice but to recreate the parts from scratch.

First, full size templates printed ...

... wooden forms cut & shaped...

... wooden hammers bend to shape, and ...

...finally, holes are cut (to lighten and strengthen the part)  Photo James Kohan

working on attaching the new ribs back on the B-26 aileron Photo Rick Willamon

 B-26 aileron ribs starting to go back on the aileron  Photo Rick Willamon

Restoration work on the B-26 co-pilot's seat.  The co-pilots seat ran on rails, to allow the
Bombadier to gain access to the nose compartment.  The last photo on this page shows (at left) the still-in-progress seat in place in the aircraft.   Photos James Ko  Photos James Kohan

  Engine mount back on the port (left) B-26 wing  Photos   Photos James Kohan

Left - Radio rack.  Right - Navigators table   Photos Kent Kleinkenecht

New ribs to go under the rebuilt stabilizer end photo 0000" size="1">="1"> James Kohan

MAPS Member Don working on new stabilizer end photo r />
  MAPS Member Don working on new stabilizer end photo Steve Satchell

MAPS Member Kent patching one of the B-26's clamshell bomb bay doors photo James Kohan

  MAPS Member Kent patching one of the B-26's clamshell bomb bay doors photo Steve Satchell

MAPS Member Jim painting one of the B-26 engine mounts photo James Kohan

  MAPS Member Bud working on one of the B-26 firewall units photo Steve Satchell

B-26 engine nacelle as of 01 October 2006 photo John Ashley

B-26 engine nacelle - Cleco's are holding the pieces together until riveting photo Gary Haught

What is a Cleco?  A Cleco is a spring-loaded fastener used to temporarily hold two pieces of sheetmetal together until they can be permanently joined together, usually by riveting or bolting.  Mostly used in the aircraft building process, they also appear in racing when building up the race car exterior.

Using a pair of Cleco pliers to install a Cleco temporary fastener

B-26 engine nacelle interior - colored sections are completely new sheetmetal work photo Gary Haught

B-26 engine nacelle exterior - ALL DONE! Most of the cleco's are gone photo Gary Haught

Nose compartment of the B-26.  Note cockpit layout and limited access photo Gary Haught

65 ft
Length: 56 ft
Height: 19 ft 10 in
Weight: 21,735 lbs empty, 32,000 lbs max
Armament: 6,000 lbs of bombs, up to six .50 cal. machine guns.
Wing Area: 602 sq ft
Engines: 2 Pratt & Whitney R-2800-5 radial engines of 1,850 hp each.
Crew: Seven

Maximum speed: 315 mph at 15,000 ft
Cruising speed: 265 mph
Range: 2,200 miles
Service Ceiling: 25,000 ft.
Rate of Climb: 1,200 fpm

Crew Chief: Dave Pawski

Michael Smith has posted a wonderful travelogue about his visit to the University of Akron's Marauder Archives on this website

Copyright 2007 MAPS Air Museum