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Category: Air support/WW2/Allied

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Vickers Wellington Bomber; The "Wimpy"

The Vickers Wellington, affectionately known as the "Wimpy," was armed with twin .330 machine guns in the nose and tail turrets. It also had 2 manually-operated .303 guns in the beam positions and could carry a 4,500 lb bomb load. Slow speed, limited ceiling, and a small bomb load soon made the Wellington obsolete, although one significant design advantage was Barnes-Wallace's geodetic lattice-work fuselage construction. This made the Wimpy extremely tough, and it often survived battle damage which would have destroyed other aircraft.

"The Flying Cigar" was an occasional nickname for the Vickers Wellington Bomber, more commonly known as the "Wimpy". The term "Flying Cigar" alludes to the shape of the fuselage as seen from the profile perspective.

After having early-on proved the inadequacy of the turret fire-power in fending off attacking fighters during daylight attacks, the Wellington went on to build up a great reputation for reliability and ruggedness in night bombing operations. In April 1941, they were the first to drop the deadly "block-buster" bomb, during a raid on Emden, and they helped to initiate the Pathfinder target-indicating tactics. In service, the Wellington was known as "The Wimpy", after J. Wellington Wimpy, Popeye's friend. (cartoon characters)


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Digger History:  an unofficial history of the Australian & New Zealand Armed Forces