Repulbic F-105B Thunderchief (335th TFS)
In its day the F-105 was the largest single engine fighter aircraft ever built! Nothing new for Republic Aviation though. There's an old saying that "if there was a five mile long runway, 'Mr. Repulbic' would build a plane that used four miles of it".
The F-105 was designed to succeed Republic's F-84 fighter bomber. This plane was a huge departure from traditional design, however. Using area-ruling in the fuselage design, a nose-mounted 20mm Vulcan cannon, and an internal bomb bay, the F-105 was designed to be a supersonic tactical bomber capable of delivering a nuclear punch!
A total of 833 "Thunderchiefs" were built. The "Thud" had a maximum speed of 1,390 miles per hour, a range of 2,206 miles, and the ability to carry over 12,000 pounds of conventional ordinance-a heavier bomb load than a WWII B-17!
Many F-105s were stationed in Europe as tactical strike bombers. However, in 1964 the U. S. Air Force began sending them to Southeast Asia and they performed as conventional bombers during the Vietnam War flying against the most dangerous targets in North Vietnam.
In this illustration I've rendered an F-105B in its beautiful natural metal finish (they would later all be painted silver during USAF "Operation Look-Alike"). This Thunderchief wears markings of the 335th Tactical Fighter Squadron (The Chiefs), based at Seymour Johnson AFB, North Carolina.
This illustration is presented as a 24x18 inch print on heavyweight glossy paper. It can be framed using any 24x18 picture frame, or mounted in a larger matted frame for an even more impressive appearance.
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