The Republic P-47 Thunderbolt was one of the most heralded and recognizable fighters of World War II. Built in larger numbers than any other American fighter aircraft in history, a record that will surely never be broken, the P-47 evolved during the war from an interceptor design to that of a long-range fighter with excellent fighter-bomber capabilities. From the original “razorback” P-47B that could not carry any external stores, to the “bubbletop” P-47N with larger wings and the ability to carry a wide array of external fuel tanks and ordnance, this book covers every aspect of the fighter that became known as the “Jug.”
Detail & Scale published its first book on Republic’s P-47 Thunderbolt in 1998. Twenty-five years later, this new publication, P-47 Thunderbolt in Detail & Scale, significantly revises and expands our original coverage of the big, radial-engine fighter that endeared itself to many pilots as the rugged and survivable aircraft that would bring them home.
Following an Introduction, the Thunderbolt History chapter traces the origins of the Thunderbolt, covering the previous Seversky and Republic efforts that led up to its design and development. This chapter then continues with how the different production variants from the P-47B through the P-47N improved the capabilities of the aircraft as each succeeding production block and version became operational.
Next is the Thunderbolt Variants chapter which takes a closer look at each version of the P-47 in more detail. All of the production variants, as well as the experimental Thunderbolts, are included in this informative chapter. Line drawings that point out important changes and enhancements made to the production variants were drawn specifically for Detail & Scale by Lloyd S. Jones.
The primary focus of the Detail & Scale Series of aviation publications is on the details of the aircraft. The Thunderbolt Details chapter has ten different sections that include 170 detail photographs that cover the P-47 in incredible detail, both inside and out and from the propeller hub to the position light on the trailing edge of the rudder. The large majority of these photographs are in color, and most were taken by the author specifically for the original book and for this publication to ensure that every possible detail would be illustrated. No less than ten different P-47s were photographed.
As with all Detail & Scale Series books, our Modelers Section provides coverage of the scale model kits of the Thunderbolt. In the quarter-century since our original book on the Jug was published, a considerable number of new kits have been released, and reviews of these have been added to the Modeler Section. Kits in all popular standard modeling scales from 1/144th through 1/24th scales are included.