The Bellanca 28-90b “Flash” was a modified version of the Bellanca 28-70 and 28-90 long-distance racing aircraft, serving as a high-speed light bomber and attack aircraft. Originally, the Bellanca 28-70 was intended for the 1934 MacRobertson Britain to Australia air race, but it missed the opportunity to participate. Following an accident that caused damage to the aircraft, it underwent reconstruction with a more powerful 960 horsepower engine, resulting in the Bellanca 28-90. In 1936, Scottish aviator Jim Mollison acquired the aircraft and set a new transatlantic speed record. The following year, he sold it to the Republican government during the Spanish Civil War after flying it to Spain. Impressed by its design, the Republican government placed an order for 20 aircraft to bolster their under-equipped air force. However, due to the neutrality acts in the United States, which prohibited the sale of arms to European nations involved in active warfare, a plan was devised to disguise the aircraft as long-distance mail carriers for Air France. To further this deception, the aircraft were even adorned with the Air France logo. Eventually, the truth was uncovered, leading to the cancellation of the sale. Instead, the Chinese government purchased the entire order of 20 aircraft, which were then shipped to China. There, they were equipped with machine guns and bomb racks for combat purposes. Unfortunately, Japanese bombers destroyed seven of these aircraft while they were on the ground, and the majority, if not all, of the remaining planes were lost in accidents. Consequently, their impact in the air war against Japan was minimal.
Length - 8.08 m
Wingspan - 14.08 m
Height - 2.64 m
Empty Weight - 1,964 Kg
Loaded Weight - 3,064 Kg
Max Speed - 450 Kph at 1,900 m
Range - 1,300 Km
Rate of Climb - 19.1 m/s
Service Ceiling - 9,300 m
Engine - 1 x Pratt and Whitney R-1830 Twin Wasp 14 Cylinder Radial Engine (706 kW)
4 x Wing Mounted 7.62mm M1919 Browning’s
1 x Dorsal Mount 7.62mm M1919 Browning
Up to 725 kg of bombs consisting of 100 lb’s and similar bombs mounted on wing racks.