Bell P-59 Airacomet series






Last updated on: September 22, 2015

A total of 66 Airacomets were produced, all are listed below in order of Serial Numbers.

This is a work in progress and any help would be appreciated. Information on these planes is rather difficult to locate online and this work will remain incomplete unless you the readers offer to help me. Please feel free to pass along any information that you might have.

At the end of this page is a list of people who have graciously offered their help. Thank you all very much!


YP-59A-BE s/n 42-108771
*8/1943: First flight.


YP-59A-BE s/n 42-108772
*1944: USAF 445th FS (412th FG).
*12/5/1944: Crashed near Hope AR due to mechanical failure.


YP-59A-BE s/n 42-108773
*9/1943: Traded to England for the first production Gloster Meteor I and assigned RAF serial number RJ362/G.
*11/1943: Sent to the Royal Aircraft Establishment at Farnborough, England.
*6/1945: Returned to the USAF.
*NACA laboratory at Cleveland, OH for tests.


YP-59A-BE s/n 42-108774
*--info needed.--


YP-59A-BE s/n 42-108775
*1944: Flight Section-Wright Field, OH.
*2/19/1945: Crashed on take-off from Reidsville Aux Field, NC.


YP-59A-BE s/n 42-108776
*1944: USAF 445th FS (412th FG).
*1946: USAF 321st Base Unit.
*7/23/1946: Ran out of gas and crashed near Grants, NM.


YP-59A-BE s/n 42-108777
*Modified with observer's cockpit in nose.
*6/1946: Donated to Caly Poly University, CA.
*Was preserved at the Air Museum at Ontario, CA.
*Currently preserved at the Planes of Fame Museum in Chino, CA.
*Being restored to flying condition.


YP-59A-BE s/n 42-108778
*11/1943: Transferred to the US Navy for carrier suitability tests, as Bureau Number 63960.
*1943-47: NATC.


YP-59A-BE s/n 42-108779
*12/1943: Transferred to the US Navy for carrier suitability tests, as Bureau Number 63961.
*1943: NATC.


YP-59A-BE s/n 42-108780
*6/25/1944: Crash landed at Niagara Falls APT, NY. Still with the Bell factory? Or on 3/23/1945?


YP-59A-BE s/n 42-108781
*--info needed.--


YP-59A-BE s/n 42-108782
*--info needed.--


YP-59A-BE s/n 42-108783
*6/1944: Delivered to the USAAF.
*1946: USAF 4020th Base Unit.
*Modified with extra cockpit in nose.
*Modified as a drone controller.
*Sent to be a gunnery target at Edwards AFB, CA.


XP-59A-BE first prototype s/n 42-108784
*10/2/1942: First flight.
*Currently preserved at the National Air and Space Museum in Washington DC.


XP-59A-BE second prototype s/n 42-108785
*2/15/1943: First flight.
*1945: USAF 4126th Base Unit.
*1945: USAF 4144th Base Unit.
*10/1945: Salvaged for spare parts.


XP-59A-BE third prototype s/n 42-108786
*4/1943: First flight.
*USAF 4144th Base Unit.
*4/1947: Used for spare parts but not totally salvaged.
*Currently preserved at the Planes of Fame Museum in Chino, CA.


P-59A-1-BE s/n 44-22609
*1945: USAAF Air Material Command at Wright Field, OH.
*3/5/1945: Destroyed at at Wright-Patterson AFB, OH after crashing into a parked aircraft? Help?


P-59A-1-BE s/n 44-22610
*1944-45: USAAF Cold Weather Test Lab at Ladd AAB, AK.
*6/1946: Salvaged by the War Assets Corporation.


P-59A-1-BE s/n 44-22611
*1944: USAAF 29th FS (412th FG).


P-59A-1-BE s/n 44-22612
*--info needed.--


P-59A-1-BE s/n 44-22613
*--info needed.--


P-59A-1-BE s/n 44-22614
*Currently preserved at the March Field Museum at March AFB, CA.


P-59A-1-BE s/n 44-22615
*--info needed.--


P-59A-1-BE s/n 44-22616
*1/5/1945: Crashed near Mapleton, NY.


P-59A-1-BE s/n 44-22617
*3/1946: Sent to Aberdeen Proving Grounds, MD for vulnerability tests.
*1949: Salvaged at least by this date.


P-59A-1-BE s/n 44-22618
*1944: USAF 445th FS (412th FG).
*12/7/1944: Crashed near Oildale, CA due to a mechanical failure.


P-59A-1-BE s/n 44-22619
*1944: USAF 31st FS (412th FG).
*11/14/1944: Ran out of gas and crashed near Dayton, OH. Or on 11/13/1944?


P-59A-1-BE s/n 44-22620
*1944-45: USAAF 29th FS (412th FG).
*3/1/1945: Crashed in the Mojave Desert near Grey Butte AAF, CA after a collision with P-59A 44-22626. Pilot was killed.


P-59A-1-BE s/n 44-22621
*1945: USAF 29th FS (412th FG).


P-59A-1-BE s/n 44-22622
*1946: USAF 6th Ferrying Group, at Long Beach AAF, CA.


P-59A-1-BE s/n 44-22623
*1945: USAF 611th Base Unit.
*3/1946: Sent to Aberdeen Proving Grounds, MD for vulnerability tests.
*1949: Salvaged at least by this date.


P-59A-1-BE s/n 44-22624
*--info needed.--


P-59A-1-BE s/n 44-22625
*--info needed.--


P-59A-1-BE s/n 44-22626
*1945: USAAF 29th FS (412th FG).
*3/1/1945: Crashed in the Mojave Desert near Grey Butte AAF, CA after a collision with P-59A 44-22620. Pilot was killed.
*3/1945: Wreck salvaged for spare parts in Bakersfield, CA.


P-59A-1-BE s/n 44-22627
*1945: USAF 29th FS (412th FG).


P-59A-1-BE s/n 44-22628
*--info needed.--


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22629
*1946: Sent to Aberdeen Proving Grounds, MD for vulnerability tests.
*1949: Salvaged at least by this date.


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22630
*Flight Test Division, at Wright Field, OH.


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22631
*--info needed.--


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22632
*--info needed.--


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22633
*Redesignated ZF-59B.
*10/1948: Written-off at Muroc AAB, CA.
*Currently preserved at Edwards AFB, CA.


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22634
*1946: Sent to Aberdeen Proving Grounds, MD for vulnerability tests.
*1949: Salvaged at least by this date.


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22635
*1946: Sent to Aberdeen Proving Grounds, MD for vulnerability tests.
*1949: Salvaged at least by this date.


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22636
*1945: USAAF 412th FG.
*1946: Sent to Aberdeen Proving Grounds, MD for vulnerability tests.
*1949: Salvaged at least by this date.


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22637
*1946: Sent to Aberdeen Proving Grounds, MD for vulnerability tests.
*1949: Salvaged at least by this date.


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22638
*1946: USAF 6th Ferrying Group, at Long Beach AAF, CA.


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22639
*1946: Sent to Aberdeen Proving Grounds, MD for vulnerability tests.
*1949: Salvaged at least by this date.


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22640
*1946: Sent to Aberdeen Proving Grounds, MD for vulnerability tests.
*1949: Salvaged at least by this date.


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22641
*1946: Sent to Aberdeen Proving Grounds, MD for vulnerability tests.
*1949: Salvaged at least by this date.


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22642
*1946: Sent to Aberdeen Proving Grounds, MD for vulnerability tests.
*1949: Salvaged at least by this date.


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22643
*1946: Sent to Aberdeen Proving Grounds, MD for vulnerability tests.
*1949: Salvaged at least by this date.


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22644
*1946: Sent to Aberdeen Proving Grounds, MD for vulnerability tests.
*1949: Salvaged at least by this date.


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22645
*1946: Sent to Aberdeen Proving Grounds, MD for vulnerability tests.
*1949: Salvaged at least by this date.


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22646
*1945: USAF 31st FS (412th FG).


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22647
*--info needed.--


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22648
*1946: Sent to Aberdeen Proving Grounds, MD for vulnerability tests.
*1949: Salvaged at least by this date.


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22649
*1945: USAF 412th Base Unit.
*8/27/1945: Crashed at Memphis APT, TN due to engine failure.


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22650
*NACA Labratory at Cleveland, OH.
*1947: Kirtland AFB, NM for tests.
*Was preserved at Kirtland AFB, NM.
*1953: Assigned to the New Mexico Air National Guard, at Kirtland AFB, NM as a ground trainer.
*Currently preserved at the USAF Museum in Dayton, OH.


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22651
*10/1945: Transferred to the US Navy for testing, as Bureau Number 64100.
*1945: NATC.


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22652
*1946: USAF 4120th Base Unit.


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22653
*--info needed.--


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22654
*1946: Sent to Aberdeen Proving Grounds, MD for vulnerability tests.
*1949: Salvaged at least by this date.


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22655
*--info needed.--


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22656
*Donated to Purdue University, IN.
*Currently preserved at the Harold Wasp Pioneer Village in Minden, NE.


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22657
*2/1946: Transferred to the US Navy for testing, as Bureau Number 64109.
*1946: NATC.
*12/1947: Salvaged at Norfolk, VA.


P-59B-1-BE s/n 44-22658
*5/1945: Delivered to the USAAF.
*1/1946: Transferred to the US Navy for testing, as Bureau Number 64108.
*1946-47: NATC.
*12/8/1947: Crashed.
*4/1948: Wreck salvaged at Norfolk, VA.

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For their assistance in various parts of this project, I would like to give thanks to the following individual people...

Bill Clark
John Szalay
Tjalling Boelman
Johan Visschedijk
Andrew Jones
Frank Roales
Chris Brame