The TB-3M-17-32 is a premium gift rank I Soviet bomber with a battle rating of 1.3 (AB/RB/SB). It has been in the game since the start of the Open Beta Test prior to Update 1.27. It was given away as a reward vehicle for the 2013 Winter Magic!, the 2014 War Thunder's birthday, and the 2022 War Thunder's 10th Anniversary events. It could also be obtained on occasion, when it appears in the Warbonds shop.
|Characteristics|| Max Speed
(km/h at 1,000 m)
| Max altitude
| Turn time
| Rate of climb
| Take-off run|
|Combat flaps||Take-off flaps||Landing flaps||Air brakes||Arrestor gear|
|Wings (km/h)||Gear (km/h)||Flaps (km/h)||Max Static G|
|Optimal velocities (km/h)|
|< 300||< 300||< 300||> 135|
Survivability and armour
- No armour
- Self-sealing fuel tanks (2 in each wing)
Modifications and economy
4 x 250 kg FAB-250sv bomb
The TB-3M-17-32 can be outfitted with the following ordnance:
- 24 x 100 kg FAB-100sv bombs (2,400 kg total)
- 12 x 250 kg FAB-250sv bombs (3,000 kg total)
- 4 x 500 kg FAB-500sv bombs + 4 x 250 kg FAB-250sv bombs (3,000 kg total)
The TB-3M-17-32 is defended by:
- 2 x 7.62 mm DA machine guns, nose turret (720 rpg = 1,440 total)
- 2 x 7.62 mm DA machine guns, dorsal (forward-facing) turret (720 rpg = 1,440 total)
- 2 x 7.62 mm DA machine guns, dorsal (rear-facing) turret (720 rpg = 1,440 total)
- 1 x 7.62 mm DA machine gun, 2 x underwing turrets (420 rpg)
Usage in battles
TB-3 is, in a nutshell, a typical heavy bomber, and a very heavy, very slow one at that. It packs a truly majestic payload of 3,000 kg of bombs, however, the problem is in getting this payload to its target. The maximum speed of TB-3 is less than 200 km/h and its flight will take a really long time during which the giant TB-3 will become a very easy and enticing target for all enemy fighters and even some bombers. All this combined with practically non-existent manoeuvrability makes this bomber a very vulnerable one and its pilots may consider themselves lucky if they reach the target - not mentioning the route back. However, the TB-3 is not at all defenceless. Five turrets with a total of eight 7.62 mm DA machine guns present quite an effective firepower - at least against fighters of the TB-3 age. When attacked, don't even bother with manoeuvres, man the turrets and open fire, it is the only hope of the TB. The effectiveness of the turret fire is multiplied thanks to one previously mentioned factor - very low speed. As the maximum speed of TB-3 is equal to a terminal speed of most of the fighters, these fighters will often have a hard time intercepting the TB, while the TB gunners will gain a great opportunity of hitting slowly approaching enemy planes. This tactics, however, doesn't work very well when attacked from below. In that case, pray.
Manual Engine Control
|Controllable|| Not controllable
Not auto controlled
| Not controllable
Not auto controlled
Auto control available
|Combined|| Not controllable
Pros and cons
- Large payload of up to 3,000 kg (6,613 lb) with different payload configurations, capable of destroying all bombing targets in a single run
- Adequate defensive firepower capable of fending off enemy fighters effectively
- Good damage absorption due to large size and strong construction
- Four engines at Rank I can allow for some to be knocked out without causing the plane to fall drastically
- Difficult to hit by fast Boom & Zoom interceptors thanks to its low speed
- Despite its low speed, not many planes are able to catch up to the TB-3 due to the altitude difference
- It never rips itself from a dive
- Surprisingly manoeuvrable for its size
- Gunners have plenty of ammo before reloading
- Very slow speed
- Very slow climb rate - the speed loss while climbing is very significant and can be deadly due to the low overall speed
- Almost no speed reserve for manoeuvring, especially apparent when landing
- There are no brakes, that you have to wait for the plane to glide to a full stop before rearming
- Basically incapable of manoeuvring when attacked - survival depends on turret fire
- Have no offensive armament and will require to slightly tip the plane forward for the turret to engage manually
- No armour protection for the crew or modules
- Large size makes large target for enemy fire, even flak
- While relatively safe from fast interceptor fighters, the TB-3 is very vulnerable to agile and manoeuvrable planes
A four-motor all-metal monoplane with fixed landing gear and a crew of 12. Designed in the AGOS department (Aviation, Hydroaviation and Experimental Construction) of the TsAGI (Central Aerohydrodynamic Institute) under the direction of A.N. Tupolev.
In February 1929, the UVVS and TsAGI signed a contract for the construction of a "Metal bomber-type aircraft with 2,400 hp engine output". The ANT-6 prototype model took its maiden flight on 20 March 1931.
Based on flight tests, the ANT-6 received the following appraisal: "Judging by all its flight characteristics, this aircraft is a highly advanced bomber, on the same level as the best foreign aircraft". In fact, no foreign bomber possessed the same collection of flight characteristics as the Tupolev at that time. It was the best of its class in the world.
The ANT-6 was recommended for series production and accepted into service with German BMW-VI engines. At the end of the 1920s, the USSR obtained a license for their production and organized their manufacturing at the Rybinsk engine plant under the designation M-17. The aircraft received the military designation TB-3 ("tyazhyolyj bombardirovshchik tretiy" or "third heavy bomber")
The TB-3 went into construction at the No. 22 aircraft plant in Fili – the only Soviet plant at that time experienced in working with duraluminum.
On 26 February 1932, the first serial TB-3 was rolled out of its gates. The aircraft was powered by four water-cooled V12 BMW-VI engines with a maximum output of 735 hp. After the license was obtained, the engine was refined for series production and received the designation Mikulin M-17.
The TB-3's artillery and firing armament included a front-mounted Tur-6 open turret containing two tandem 7.62 mm Degtyaryov DA machine guns (the tandem version was designated DA-2), two diagonally-placed upper Tur-5 open turrets behind the wing edge which moved from side to side, each with a DA-2, and two extensible B-2 turrets under the wings armed with a single DA on a pivot, for firing to the rear.
The DA machine guns were disc-fed. A standard disc contained 60 rounds. The underwing B-2 turrets had 420 rounds (7 discs) each. The DA-2 turrets had 1440 rounds (24 discs per tandem turret) each.
Its standard bomb load amounted to 2,000 kg. When overloaded (by reducing its fuel supply) the aircraft could carry up to five tons of ordnance.
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|Tupolev Design Bureau (Ту́полев Опытное конструкторское бюро)|
|Bombers||TB-3M-17-32 · SB 2M-100 · SB 2M-103 MV-3 · SB 2M-103 · SB 2M-103U · SB 2M-103U MV-3 · SB 2M-105|
|Tu-2 · Tu-2S · Tu-2S-44 · Tu-2S-59 · Tu-4|
|Export||␗SB 2M-103U · ␗Tu-2S-44 · ␗Tu-4|
|* While Andrei Tupolev was imprisoned, Alexander Arkhangelsky, second in command at Tupolev OKB was able to append his name to the final production series of the SB bomber.|
|SB and Ar||SB 2M-100 · SB 2M-103 · SB 2M-103 MV-3 · SB 2M-103U · SB 2M-103U MV-3 · SB 2M-105 · Ar-2|
|Yer-2 (petrol)||Yer-2 (M-105) · Yer-2 (M-105) TAT · Yer-2 (M-105R) TAT · Yer-2 (M-105R) LU|
|Yer-2 (diesel)||Yer-2 (ACh-30B) (e) · Yer-2 (ACh-30B) (l)|
|Tu||Tu-2 · Tu-2S · Tu-2S-44 · Tu-2S-59 · Tu-4|
|Pe||Pe-2-1 · Pe-2-31 · Pe-2-83 · Pe-2-110 · Pe-2-205 · Pe-2-359 · Pe-8|
|IL||DB-3B · IL-4|
|Po-2 · Po-2M · MBR-2-M-34 · TB-3M-17-32 · Yak-4 · Be-6|
|Lend-Lease||▂PBY-5A Catalina · ▂Hampden TB Mk I · ▂A-20G-30 · ▂B-25J-30|
|USSR premium aircraft|
|Fighters||Krasnolutsky's I-15bis · I-16 type 28 · Zhukovsky's I-153-M62 · I-153P · I-180S · I-301 · ITP (M-1)|
|LaGG-3-4 · LaGG-3-23 · LaGG-3-34 · Dolgushin's La-7 · La-11|
|Yak-3 (VK-107) · Yak-3T · Golovachev's Yak-9M|
|▂P-39K-1 · ▂Pokryshkin's P-39N-0 · ▂P-39Q-15 · ▂P-40E-1 · ▂P-47D-27 · ▂P-63A-5 · ▂P-63A-10 · ▂P-63C-5|
|▂Hurricane Mk IIB · ▂Spitfire Mk IXc · ▂Fw 190 D-9|
|Jet fighters||Su-11 · MiG-15bis ISH · MiG-17AS · MiG-21S (R-13-300) · MiG-23ML|
|Strike aircraft||IL-2M "Avenger" · IL-2 M-82 · Su-6 · Tandem MAI · TIS MA · Su-8 · Tu-1|
|Yak-38 · Su-7BMK · Su-25K · Su-39|
|Bombers||Po-2M · Be-6 · MBR-2-M-34 · Pe-2-205 · TB-3M-17-32|
|▂PBY-5A Catalina · ▂Hampden TB Mk I · ▂A-20G-30 · ▂B-25J-30|