Willow Run B24 Production Exhibit, Michigan

Historical Significance of the Willow Run B-24 Production Plant, Here showing the Assembly Line.

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Click Here's a picture inside the Ford, B-24 Liberator plant at Willow Run Michigan,
And it's Historical Significance in WW2.

This is the largest building in the world, under one roof.  Here, under Edsel Ford's approval and Charles E. Sorensen's direction, the B-24 's were produced at a rate of one bomber every 56 minutes, much greater than the Consolidated's claim of plane production of one B-24 liberator every day, which Consolidated never achieved.  This is a matter of Historical Significance that changed the course of the war.  Without Willow Run's high production rate, the Allies may not have won the war.

The B-24 Liberator Specifications are as follows.

The length of the B-24 Liberator was 66' 4",  it was 17' 11" high and it had a wingspan of 110'.  The B-24 had an empty weight of 32,605 pounds and a maximum weight of 60,000 lbs.  The B-24 used Four Pratt & Whitney R-1830 radial engines which produced 1,200 horsepower each, a total of 4,800 horsepower.  The B-24 liberator had a range of 2,300 miles, had a cruise speed of 200 mph and a maximum speed of 303 mph.  The liberator had a service ceiling of 32,000 feet.

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Historical Significance of 

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Assembly line of the willow run plant showing the b24 liberator in production
Photo Scanned by C. Jeff Dyrek

A B-24 Liberator Production Line


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  Click Here to see the Script Release for  
  "Willow Run The Eighth Air Force WW2 Movie"
  ISBN/: 0964720531

Historical Significance of 
Willow Run 

The stakes for Willow Run's historical contribution were high. 

The Allied nations, pushed back in Asia, deadlocked in Africa  and Europe, desperately needed the B-24 bomber with the range and striking power demanded by global warfare. They needed them in large quantities, and they needed them yesterday! 

The 3,000 mile range and 8,000 pound payload of the B-24 heavy bomber represented the Allied Forces supreme effort to regain the initiative over Hitler and his Axis powers.

A year before Japan bombed Pearl Harbor, the government came to the Ford Motor Company for help, and Mr. Ford sent Charles E. Sorensen, his Director of Production, to San Diego to review the company which had designed the B-24. They were manufacturing two airplanes a month. 

Within twenty-four hours, Sorensen advised the U S. Air Corps that he would build them a new factory, and mass produce the bombers at the rate of one an hour. An unbelievable rate that the aircraft industry thought was impossible. 

Two days less that a year from breaking ground for the factory, Sorensen produced the first Center Wing Section for the plane. By April 1944, he was producing four hundred and sixty-two bombers per month at a rate of one every 59.34 minutes. 

The enormous accomplishment of the men and women from Willow Run can only be appreciated when one fully realizes that in 1941, before Ford entered the aircraft industry, it required 201,826 man-hours to manufacture a single B-24 bomber. In March 1944, Ford's procedures of mass production had reduced those man-hours to only 17,357. 

Commissioned to replace the B-17, the Liberator was built in near-record time. The machine was designed around the long-span low-drag Davis wing, a new concept at the time of production. Early models were soon superseded on all production lines by the J model, the most successful B-24 of all time. When production ceased on 31 May 1945, 18,475 Liberators had been made, making it the most produced American aircraft of WW2.


Click Here's Warren Benjamin Kidders New Book, The Mighty Eighth Air Force Click Here's the Movie Script for Willow Run

Order Willow Run, the Book. 
To Order 
Your Personal Autographed Copy, Send Check or Money Order to:

KFT Publishers,
3617 Christine Dr.
Lansing, MI. 48911

For Information Contact
Email: kidderfr@ATT.net Phone 517- 394-2849

   Here's another Book Review about a B-24 Liberator Pilot in WW2, Jessie Pettey.

An Article by the webmaster


B-24 Liberator Movies     B-24 Liberator Aviation Art              B-24 Liberator Models 
military aircraft like the b24 liberator changed the outcome of the war

Flight Manual B-24 Liberator

A reprint of the official government handbook designed to show the new cadet  how to fly the aircraft. Heavily illustrated with dozens of photos, diagrams and  charts. 146 pgs., 8½"x 11", sfbd.

.....#0005031 1

Click Here to see the B-24 Liberator, Willow Run Exhibit.

USS Kitty Hawk Exhibit
Take a tour of the at sea operations of the aircraft carrier, the USS Kitty Hawk.  1977 - 1978
Historical Events of this West Pac Cruise
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