P-47D-28 Thunderbolt

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General info

P-47D-28 Thunderbolt in the Garage.

The P-47D-28 Thunderbolt is a Rank III American strike fighter with a battle rating of 3.0 (AB), 4.3 (RB), and 4.0 (SB). It was in the game since the start of the Open Beta Test prior to Update 1.37.

The main purpose, usage and tactics recommendations

Arcade Realistic Simulator

Arcade Realistic Simulator

Arcade Realistic Simulator


General play style

The Thunderbolt was originally designed for high altitude bomber escort role, but due to limited range, it was not very successful on the European theatre of operations where it couldn't escort the bombers all the way to their target. The newer P-51B/C and later P-51D fitted with a Merlin engine turned out to be a much better long range, high altitude escort fighter, and the P-47 was relegated to other duties. Due to the Thunderbolt's large size and strong construction, the aircraft was well suited for carrying large amounts of air-to-ground ordnance, and was often used in ground attack role against small targets that level bombers could not reliably hit, such as bridges.

In War Thunder, much like in real life, all Thunderbolt variants have tremendous potential as a high altitude fighter, but can also be used very effectively as ground attack aircraft, thanks to their impressive payload capacity. When fighting against enemy aircraft, boom and zoom tactics are a must, never try to dogfight with the 'Jug'. When diving on a target, if you don't secure the kill, don't try to turn and finish him, use the speed you built in the dive and climb up, circle around and do it all again. Don't be afraid to go head-on; you have a radial engine and eight fifty-caliber machine guns.

Vehicle characteristics

Except for having a different propeller, there are very few differences between the P-47D-25 and D-28. The D-25 uses a Hamilton Standard Hydromatic 13 ft. 7/8 in. diameter propeller, while the D-28 uses a Curtiss Electric "sleeved" propeller with 13 ft diameter. Despite a popular misconception that the D-28 uses a "paddle-blade" propeller while the D-25 doesn't, both were actually called "paddle-blade" propellers, and offered virtually identical performance. The origin of this misconception is that the early Thunderbolt variants used a smaller Curtiss Electric propeller with only 12 ft. 2 in. diameter, which proved insufficient for the R-2800 engine's power output. Larger propellers were needed to transform more engine power into thrust, giving the Thunderbolt a boost in climb rate and acceleration. These propellers were used starting from the Thunderbolt D-series manufacturing block 22 (P-47D-22) and the main distinction between these propellers was simply that aircraft manufactured on Republic's Evansville plant received the new Curtiss Electric propellers, while the Long Island manufacturing facility used Hamilton Standard propellers.

Compared to the D-25, the D-28 variant offers the M10 Bazookas as an additional armament option, although many pilots in War Thunder question the usefulness of the Bazookas compared to the more destructive HVARs.

Tactics

Always maintain speed. The P-47 handles like a dream at about 350-400 mph (563-643 km/h), but once it gets to >220 mph it handles like a pig dipped in mud. One great thing about the handling at high speed, though, is that the P-47 responds quickly at high speeds, and this allows some impressive defensive scissoring without losing wings at terminal velocity. The high-wingloading is an issue, though, as the Jug will lose most of its energy in a blackout turn. This does endow the Jug with one key feature- it is a rock-solid gun platform. See tactics to use the P-47 like the energy fighter it can be.

Unfortunately, zoom-climbing and dive acceleration are not the "Jug's" forte. The BF-109 has a superior dive acceleration, and the FW-190 can zoom-climb far faster. Still, the energy retention of the P-47 is great, along with the fact that it flies far faster than both the Würger and Messerschmitt. The P-47 is NOT A TURN-FIGHTER. Although it is possible to out-turn a heavy fighter like the BF-110 C or Do 217, it is not recommended- the acceleration is fairly poor, and once a P-47 is a sitting duck, it will be be swarmed like flies to fruit in a compost pile. I have seen many an inexperienced player who will dive and then turn fight their prey. Once I catch it, my FW-190 A-1 can dispatch with a little difficulty, but not too much. Acrobatic pilots will not be impressed by the P-47 as well, because it performs Immelmans very sluggishly and the roll rate is not magnificent as well.

Durability, like mentioned above, is pretty good. As in WW2 itself, the P-47 was renowned for its heavy armor. In War Thunder, the biggest weak point of the P-47 is its engine and wings. The wings can break fairly easily in maneuvers at speeds around ~420 mph or so. They also tend to break after a well placed cannon burst (FW-190, A6M2/3). The engine though is also fairly susceptible to catching fire while chasing a bomber, but I believe this is not due to its durability, but to its size. Speaking of fire, the P-47D will be heavily damaged by the time it pulls itself out of a fire. One should immediately try to limp home if set aflame.

Performance of the P-47 at altitude is OK, but once you go above about 8000m, any energy lost will have to be regained by diving and losing altitude. For example, if you attack a bomber head on, then turn to chase it at an altitude even approching 5000m, the P-47 might not have a chance of catching it before it lets its load go because you would have to dive, regain energy, and slowly climb back up to your opponent.

When used skillfully, the tracer rounds can be used to "derp". Because of the high caliber (for a machine gun) and fire rate, tracers can be absolutely terrifying to anyone attacked by them. However, due to the "scare" effect and low takedown capabilities, the tracers have limited practical use. They look especially cool when used on Night maps.

Modes
In Arcade, the P-47 can make the most of its capability. In Arcade, engine overheating is not a problem and the "Jug" can get an air start. Keep WEP on automatic, and climb as high as possible. Watch out for Spitfires, FWs, and BF-109s, which have the capability to climb as high and as quickly as the P-47. Once a height of around 4-5 km is reached (bomber level), go for the bombers. If rockets are equipped, expend them against the bombers. Then initiate the tactics seen in "Shredding Planes". You CAN stay at altitude and prey on any high-flying prey. Beware, the FW-190 will be your competitor as well.
In Realistic, one has to be much more careful with how he/she uses the P-47. On takeoff, climb to as high as possible before an engine overheat. If Radiator is installed overheating will still be a problem, but not nearly as bad a one as a "vanilla" P-47 will be. If overheating does occur, pull the throttle to around 80% and do a slow climb away from the enemy. Once high enough, attack high-altitude marauders or use BnZ. In high speed dives (BnZ), make sure not to make "blackout" turns, because the "Jug" will rip its wings, even though it has fantastic durability. Keep in mind the fact that the plane will respond more sluggishly in Realistic- one should not try to be an acrobat. Other than that, follow the tactics described in "Shredding Planes" and "Ground Attack".
The "Jug" is one of the best planes available for SB. Not only is the only fighter with a full-blown "bubble canopy" to provide a great view, but it also has full high-caliber machine gun armament, which is invaluable for beginners. The machine guns are very forgiving due to easy adjustment, high rate of fire, and large ammunition capacity. Take advantage of the high durability, as well. Other than that the physics of the "Jug" are identical to RB.

In RB and SB one has to be precise with the ordanance. It is recommended to use the P-47 almost like a dive bomber to have the best accuracy possible.


Armament tips

Offensive guns
The 8 Browning M2 Machine Guns pack great punch when used correctly. Long bursts are the forte of the guns, not conservative bursts that one would normally use on a cannon-armed fighter (FW-190). One should also make the most of the low caliber by using stealth (the tracers are a waste, as the the machine guns do not require as much firing accuracy as cannon- you can spray those M2s!). Fire from about .8-1.2 km at max. The M2s are very accurate and have a minimal drop, so long range harrassing fire can be quite effective. However, depending on one's pilot aiming skills and his/her own, it may be better to fire from around .3-.5 km. Firing closer to the target is also very advantageous in BnZ, because the high dive speed and inability low turn rate (if the opponent maneuvers)- one does not want to lose a kill by firing from too far behind and then diving past his/her prey because one's opponent simply turned. The high burst mass output (4.44 kg, compared to the 5.17 kg of the Beaufighter) combined with the high ammunition capacity and accurate and straight-firing M2s make the P-47 one of the deadliest opponents in the 3-4 BR range.

The ammunition capacity is pretty good, but do not expect it to last for too long (they are MGs, after all). Therefore, do not just aim for the body of any plane. Try to aim for the wings and possibly tail. These are weak points that can result in relatively quick kills. The MGs can rip control surfaces off of any foe quickly, and are extremely effective against the wings of opponents.

Payloads
The P-47 is one of the most famous WW2 ground attack planes- no wonder it was named the "Jug"! In War Thunder, the load it can carry is frightfully large- 3 large bombs (2 1000 lb, 1 500 lb) and a max of 10 HVAR rockets. Indeed, the P-47 is better equipped than an A-20, which is still largely used even in BR3-4 battles. Thus, a P-47 can be vital to a Ground-Strike mission. Its speed, combined with climb rate and durability make it a great attacker on its own.

Like mentioned above, the P-47s M2 Brownings make pretty effective strafing weapons if used properly. When equipped with Ground-Attack, they can effectively take out most "Soft" targets, (light pillboxes, etc.).

The D-28 has two different rocket types to choose from: Bazookas and High-Velocity-Attack-Rockets. The latter is simply far superior to the former, as currently the Bazookas do not have their HEAT warhead modelled.

In full maximum payload the Jug is difficult to take off in or tohandle. With three bombs + ten rockets dive bombing attacks are nigh impossible to manage from low altitudes, especially if one intends to keep the second bomb drop (2*1000lbs). For combined forces it is therefore suggested to only equip 2x1000+10HVAR and ignore the 500lbs for superior speed and handeling.
In full maximum payload the Jug is difficult to take off in or tohandle. With three bombs + ten rockets dive bombing attacks are nigh impossible to manage from low altitudes, especially if one intends to keep the second bomb drop (2*1000lbs). For combined forces it is therefore suggested to only equip 2x1000+10HVAR and ignore the 500lbs for superior speed and handeling.

Specific enemies worth noting

Planes that the P-47 will face will be between the 3.0 and 4.0 BR range. Depending on what planes one equips, one can expect planes like the Fw 190 A-1 to the Fw 190 A-4, Bf 109 F-1 to the F-4.

Counter-Tactics

Pros and cons

Pros

  • Great at diving and BnZ
  • Impressive firepower
  • Impressive payloads
  • Great engine performance above 6000m
  • Fantastic gun platform- the 2 "quartets" of M2s are extremely accurate and in many cases as powerful as cannon
  • Great high-speed handling
  • Fantastic top speed in level flight
  • Fantastic ground attack capability
  • Good scissoring capability
  • Great durability
  • Great cockpit
  • Cools rapidly and can WEP for long duration of time without overheating
  • Has 25 Mins of ADI

Cons

  • Terrible turning time at low altitude
  • Mediocre climb performance
  • Engine prone to being set on fire while
  • Poor low-speed handling
  • Large target
  • Engine can overheat quickly if you constantly use WEP

Specifications

Armaments

Offensive armaments

  • 8 x 12.7 mm M2 Browning machine guns, wing-mounted (425 rpg = 3400 total)

M2_Late

M2_Late

M2 Late Browning USA

Pros

  • Improved shells over "M2 Early"
  • Very high shell velocity
    • Accurate.
    • Easy to lead shots with.
  • More powerful than the .30cals.
  • High rate of fire, though lower than the .30cals.

Cons

  • Weaker than cannons
  • Like the .30cals, default belts usually contain ball ammunition.


Payloads

  • 1 x 500 lbs AN-M64A1 bomb
  • 2 x 1000 lbs AN-M65A1 bombs
  • 2 x 1000 lbs AN-M65A1 bombs + 1 x 500 lbs AN-M64A1 bomb
  • 10 x 127 mm HVAR rockets + 2 x 1000 lbs AN-M65A1 bombs + 1 x 500 lbs AN-M64A1 bomb
  • 10 x 127 mm HVAR rockets + 1 x 500 lbs AN-M64A1 bomb
  • 10 x 127 mm HVAR rockets + 3 x 500 lbs AN-M64A1 bombs
  • 10 x 127 mm HVAR rockets + 2 x 1000 lbs AN-M65A1 bombs
  • 10 x 127 mm HVAR rockets
  • 6 x M8 rockets
  • 6 x M8 rockets + 2 x 500 lbs AN-M64A1 bombs

Engine & Mobility

Arcade Realistic Simulator

Arcade Realistic Simulator

Arcade Realistic Simulator


Engine

Name: Pratt & Whitney R-2800-63 18-cylinder radial
  • Cooling type: Air
  • Max power: 1806 hp (Stock), ____ hp (Upgraded)
  • Takeoff power: 2108 hp (Stock), ____ hp (Upgraded)
  • Mass: 1027 kg
Name: Pratt & Whitney R-2800-63 18-cylinder radial
  • Cooling type: Air
  • Max power: 1786 hp (Stock), ____ hp (Upgraded)
  • Takeoff power: 2088 hp (Stock), ____ hp (Upgraded)
  • Mass: 1027 kg
Name: Pratt & Whitney R-2800-63 18-cylinder radial
  • Cooling type: Air
  • Max power: 1786 hp (Stock), ____ hp (Upgraded)
  • Takeoff power: 2088 hp (Stock), ____ hp (Upgraded)
  • Mass: 1027 kg

Stats

Stock
  • Max speed: 660 km/h
    • at height: 9,114 m
  • Max altitude: 12,500 m
  • Turn Time: 26.6 s
  • Rate of Climb: 5.4 m/s
  • Takeoff run: 700 m

Upgraded

  • Max speed: 736 km/h
    • at height: 9,114 m
  • Max altitude: 12,500 m
  • Turn Time: 23.4 s
  • Rate of Climb: 18 m/s
  • Takeoff run: 700 m
Stock
  • Max speed: 653 km/h
    • at height: 9,114 m
  • Max altitude: 12,500 m
  • Turn Time: 27.2 s
  • Rate of Climb: 7.2 m/s
  • Takeoff run: 700 m

Upgraded

  • Max speed: ___ km/h
    • at height: 9,114 m
  • Max altitude: 12,500 m
  • Turn Time: __._ s
  • Rate of Climb: __._ m/s
  • Takeoff run: 700 m
Stock
  • Max speed: 653 km/h
    • at height: 9,114 m
  • Max altitude: 12,500 m
  • Turn Time: 27.2 s
  • Rate of Climb: 7.2 m/s
  • Takeoff run: 700 m

Upgraded

  • Max speed: ___ km/h
    • at height: 9,114 m
  • Max altitude: 12,500 m
  • Turn Time: __._ s
  • Rate of Climb: __._ m/s
  • Takeoff run: 700 m

Performance

Warning this is still in the test phase and is probably incorrect. Take information with a grain of salt (data taken from 1.55)



0
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
0
0.48
0.96
1.44
1.92
2.4
Horsepower in 1000hp
Altitude in 1000m

Supercharger Stage #1: 100%

Supercharger Stage #1: WEP



Modules and improvements

Climbrate and acceleration is a big issue for the stock P-47D. Focus on Compressor, Engine, Wing repairs and Engine Injection first. During this performance focused grind, you can additionally research New 12.7mm belts and the various payload modules to unlock the higher tiers for the better performance upgrades.

History of creation and combat usage

Developed by North Republic Aviation, the main role of the P-47 Thunderbolt was Bomber Escort, at high altitude the 'Jug' could contend with the latest from the Luftwaffe. The design was to also include much better protection for the pilot by having increased armor around the cockpit, however this increased it's weight substantially. It was the first American fighter to receive more than the standard x6 .50 caliber M2 Browning machine guns, a total of 8 all together. making it the most powerful Allied aircraft in terms of firepower at the time. Thanks to it's rugged design, the Thunderbolt was able to take a considerable beating, more so than other allied aircraft, also with it's sturdy airframe and large engine, the 'Jug' quickly took on the role of ground attack, able to arm itself with 2500lbs of bombs and rockets. All in all the Thunderbolt was one of the most successful allied aircraft during the war, even with the introduction of the faster and more nimble P-51 Mustang, later modifications of the Thunderbolt would go on to see action in the later part of the Pacific Campaign against the Imperial Japanese Navy.

A total of 750 D-28 model P-47s were built. The aircraft is very similar to the P-47D-25 Thunderbolt except for one primary difference. This model introduced the Curtiss Electric 13ft paddle-blade propeller. The addition of this larger propeller helped cure the P-47's issues of low altitude climbing.

Ingame description

Republic P-47D-28 Thunderbolt single-engine army heavy escort fighter/fighter-bomber


A single-seat, all-metal monoplane with an enclosed cockpit and retractable landing gear. It was designed in the design bureau of the Republic Aviation Corporation under the direction of Alexander Kartveli, a Russian immigrant of Georgian origin. The first flight of the XP-47B prototype took place in May 1941. Full-scale production began in March 1942.
Beginning in September 1942, fighters of the P-47D variant began to leave the factory floor. They featured 2,000 hp Pratt & Whitney R-2800-21 eighteen-cylinder, air-cooled engines, with a water mixture injected into the cylinders under augmented rating conditions and with an improved turbosupercharger.
The armament of all batches of P-47Ds included eight 12.7 mm Colt-Browning M2.5 machine guns (425 rounds each) located in the wing panels. Bombs of up to 500 lb could be suspended from the ventral pylon of the earlier P-47Ds. Extra wing pylons designed for two 1,000 lb bombs were fitted on subsequent batches of P-47Ds. The plane's maximum bomb capacity could reach 2,500 lb (1,130 kg). The wing-mounted bomb racks were "wet," meaning that they were connected to the fuel lines and that external fuel tanks could be suspended from them.
Beginning with the P-47D-20 batch, the Thunderbolts had a higher tail skid to reduce aerodynamic resistance during takeoff, plus a Pratt & Whitney R-2800-59 Double Wasp engine whose rated power was 2,000 hp but which could reach 2,300 hp in short-term emergency conditions. The aerodynamic configuration of the underwing pylons was improved. This P-47D batch was the first to lack any paint. Due to absolute supremacy of the Allies' aircraft in the air, camouflage patterns were considered unnecessary, as they impaired aircraft performance characteristics. Beginning with the P-47D-25 batch, the Thunderbolts obtained a new drop-shaped cockpit canopy with no framing, which significantly improved visibility to the upper side of the plane's rear. However, the reduced height of the fuselage spine fairing behind the pilot's cockpit slightly impaired the aircraft's longitudinal stability, so Thunderbolts were equipped with a small dorsal fin fairing beginning with the P-47D-27 batch.
The D-27 batch was soon followed by the D-28 batch, which became one of the most widely produced. 750 aircraft were manufactured at the factory in Farmingdale, and 1,028 in Evansville. D-28-RA aircraft built in Evansville and adapted to fly under the conditions of the Pacific theatre of war had their Hamilton Standard Hydromatic 24E50 propellers replaced with a different type of propeller, the Curtiss-Electric C54E50-A114, which had a smaller diameter. The shape of the propeller's spinner was also changed. Due to the new propeller, the aircraft was lengthened by 100 mm, and its maximum height with its tail up was increased by 20 mm. A number of changes were introduced into the hydraulic system, and the plane's radio equipment was improved, with an advanced radio compass installed. The two outermost machine guns were often removed in the field to improve the fighter's manoeuvrability characteristics. This happened quite often and was beneficial in most cases.

Aircraft of the D-28-RA batch built in Evansville were used in the Pacific quite sparingly, due to the lack of airfields with runways of appropriate length. The Thunderbolts became deeply involved in the Pacific only after the appearance of the N version, which was specially designed for the Pacific theatre of war.

Screenshots and fan art

Skins and camouflages for the P-47D-28 Thunderbolt from live.warthunder.com.

Additional information (links)

References


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p-47d-28.png

P-47D-28
Nation USA
Type High Altitude Fighter
Attackers
Fighting style Boom & Zoom
Ground Attack

   Metric✓       Imperial   

   Metric       Imperial✓   

Characteristics
Empty Weight ~4971 kg
Empty Weight + fuel ~6117 kg
Takeoff Weight ~9535 kg
Wing Area ~28 m²
# Flap Positions 3
Number of Engines 1
Air Breaks no
Arrestor Gear no
Statistics
Power per Engine 2000 hp
WEP Duration 19.99 minutes
top speed ~700.06 kph at 9144 m
Climb Rate ~10.60 m/s
Optimal climb velocity ~281.52 kph
Turn Time ~25.00 s
Wing loading (Empty) ~178.00 kg/m²
Characteristics
Empty Weight ~10958 lb
Empty Weight + fuel ~13485 lb
Takeoff Weight ~21022 lb
Wing Area ~301 ft²
# Flap Positions 3
Number of Engines 1
Air Breaks no
Arrestor Gear no
Statistics
Power per Engine 2000 hp
WEP Duration 19.99 minutes
Top speed ~434.99 mph at 30000 m
Climb Rate 34.78 ft/s
Optimal climb velocity ~174.93 mph
Turn Time 25.00 s
Wing loading (Empty) ~36.46 lb/ft²
Main Weapons
8 x M2/late Browning 425 RPG
Payload Option 1
Nothing Loaded Clean Plane
Payload Option 2
1 x 💣 500 lbs Bomb
Payload Option 3
2 x 💣 1000 lbs AN-M65A1 Bomb
Payload Option 4
2 x 💣 1000 lbs AN-M65A1 Bomb
1 x 💣 500 lbs Bomb
Payload Option 5
10 x 🚀 173mm, 20.6kg HVAR rocket
2 x 💣 1000 lbs AN-M65A1 Bomb
1 x 💣 500 lbs Bomb
Payload Option 6
10 x 🚀 173mm, 20.6kg HVAR rocket
1 x 💣 500 lbs Bomb
Payload Option 7
10 x 🚀 173mm, 20.6kg HVAR rocket
3 x 💣 500 lbs Bomb
Payload Option 8
10 x 🚀 173mm, 20.6kg HVAR rocket
2 x 💣 1000 lbs AN-M65A1 Bomb
Payload Option 9
10 x 🚀 173mm, 20.6kg HVAR rocket
Payload Option 10
6 x 🚀 114mm, 17.2kg M8 rocket
Payload Option 11
2 x 💣 500 lbs Bomb
6 x 🚀 114mm, 17.2kg M8 rocket
Limits
Max Speed limit 885 kph
Gear lmit 450 kph
Combat Flaps 520 kph
Max static +G's ~14
Max static -G's ~6
Optimal Velocities
Ailerons <380 kph
Rudder <420 kph
Elevators <450 kph
Radiator >250 kph
Limits
Max Speed limit 550 mph
Gear lmit 280 mph
Combat Flaps 323 mph
Max static +G's ~14
Max static -G's ~6
Optimal Velocities
Ailerons <236 mph
Rudder <261 mph
Elevators <280 mph
Radiator >155 mph
Manual Control
Mixer is controllable
Pitch is controllable
has automatic pitch
Radiator (water) is controllable
Radiator (oil) is controllable
Oil and water uses different radiator control
Supercharger is controllable
Turbocharger is controllable
Compressor settings 1
Optimal Altitude
7350 m
24114 ft
100% Enginepower 2000 hp
WEP Enginepower 2300 hp
* Warning this is still in the test phase and can be incorrect. Take information with a grain of salt (data from 1.57 initial release)