B-36J Peacemaker at Dayton
First flown in July 1953, the B-36J was the ultimate new-build version of the Peacemaker, and would be the last of the type to be employed by the Strategic Air Command. The day of the piston-engined bomber was definitely waning by 1953, but as the B-52 was still a ways off from entering service, Convair would turn out 33 J-models, with stronger landing gear and extra wing fuel. Fourteen examples were built to the stripped Featherweight configuration and the others were refitted to give them more altitude capability.
The NMUSAF’s example was flown to Wright Field after the B-36’s phaseout in early 1959, and now sits in the Cold War Gallery. It has the white anti-flash undersides designed to reflect the heat of nearby nuclear detonations.
“American Secret Projects: Fighters, Bombers, and Attack Aircraft, 1937-1945” a review Includes coverage of early B-36 designs