Business: Exit the B-36

At Consolidated Vultee's huge Fort Worth plant last week, a quiet ceremony hailed the last of a long line of famed warbirds. Out rolled the final production model of Convair's ten-engined B-36 bomber, the postwar workhorse of the U.S. Strategic Air Command. In all, something like 400 had been made.

When the big A-bomber first flew in 1946, it was the world's mightiest (wing span: 230 ft.; weight: 179 tons) and first intercontinental bomber. With six 3,800-h.p. Pratt & Whitney engines (plus four General Electric J47 jets), it can fly 10,000 miles with a five-ton bomb load, tote as much as 42...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!