The PBJ-1H, is a navalized variant of the American B-25 Mitchell, used as a ground attack aircraft. The PBJ-1H is currently a Third Tier aircraft in the American line with an upfront cost of 110,000 .
Design & Development Edit
The PBJ had its origin in a deal made between the US Navy and the USAAF. As part of the deal, 50 B-25C's and 152 B-25D's were transferred to the Navy. The first Navy Mitchells arrived in 1943, used by Marine Corps pilots as surveillance planes. Many of the ealry PBJ's had their ventral turrets removed to accomedate a retractable radome.
Later, large numbers of B-25H's and B-25J's were delivered as PBJ-1H's and PBJ-1J's respectively. Many of the C and D versions carried a rather ugly, bulbous antenna for an APS-3 search radar on top of their transparent noses. The J's usually stored their radars in a ventral radome, allowing a clear view out their nose. The H's, however, lacked a transparent nose. Instead, their solid noses housed a 75mm T13 E1 cannon, and two additional 12.7 mm Brownings. The H's radome was usually mounted on its wingtip. Towards the end of the war, when Japanese fighters became scarce, many PBY-1H's had their top turrets removed to save weight.
Operational History Edit
In 1944 operational use of the H's and J's began. The PBJ's operated out of the Philippines, Saipan, Iwo Jima, and Okinawa in the last months of the war. Their primary mission was the interdiction of Japanese ships trying to run the Allied blockade of the island. These missions were usually successful, and helped strangle Japan's supply lines, weakening its military.
In game use & Tactics Edit
The 75mm T13E1 cannon is similar to the 75mm M3 on the Sherman tank, and shares its powerful support capability. With the Armored Targets belt loaded, it can knock out light pillboxes with ease and greater accuracy than bombs, at least in Realistic and Simulator modes. It is even effective against light and medium tanks, although the low fire rate makes it less than ideal. The 12.7mm guns should be only utilized against "soft" targets such as Armored Cars, AAA and Artillery positions, and the 75mm Gun against hardened targets such as pillboxes and tanks.
However, the airframe is still that of the B-25. While it means that it will have a relatively large number of defensive weapons, it also means that it is relatively sluggish compared to other close-support aircraft. It also presents a relatively large, slow moving though well-defended target. Beware of all variants of the Bell P-39 Aircobra, Bell P-63 Kingcobra, Republic P-47 Thunderbolt, Messerschmitt Me 410 Hornisse and the Yakovlev Yak-9T; they can kill your plane quickly, while it takes numerous 12.7mm rounds to bring any of them down. There are also two blindspots, created by the twin rudders in the tail. Any skilled player will manipulate this. Also, keep in mind that there is no defensive weapons underneath. Despite your heavy armament, always operate under fighter cover. After all, you are a B-25 with a really big gun.