There are a host of other technical issues as to why the US and UK bomber and fighter forces evolved differently. Beam attacks and head on firing passes from German cannon firing fighters became possible, when you MUST provide an all around defense with multiple machine guns. Drag KILLS, because it robs you of speed and altitude. The American wartime propaganda claimed a virtue of this necessity, but Boeing, Martin and Consolidated aircraft designers knew the Germans were right about SPEED. The B-17 was supposed to be a 300 knot bomber at 27000 feet. It was a 200 knot bomber at 22,000 feet. (Corection; it was a 240 MPH bomber at 25-30,000' bomber!) Lots of DRAG. No wonder the Lancaster was a more efficient bomb truck as far as payload and crew. THREE TONNES of ammunition, life support, additional men and guns went into each Flying Fort, that a Lancaster did not carry or need. Note that IN SPITE of all that extra weight, the Empty Equipped Weight of the B-17F/G was over 300 pounds lighter than the EEW of the Lancaster and several hundred to 1,000 pounds lighter than the other Heavies from England! See; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/B... PLUS; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A... 36,135 to 36,457 pounds!) That's a lot of gas and bombs not carried.
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