William & Colt Peacemaker 370
William & Colt Peacemaker 370

The William and Colt Peacemaker 370 was built in the aftermath of the Texas/Mexico conflict. Though the Texans had been successful in routing Mexican forces, it was clear that the Mexicans would return. The Texas government called for new fighter designs, and the Peacemaker was one of the first designs introduced.

Though William and Colt’s concept of a dual-hull fighter was not revolutionary, their execution of the design was. Most such designs use two engines, one in each hull, with the cockpit located between them. The Peacemaker’s engine was placed between the hulls, with the cockpit in one hull and much of the plane’s weaponry in the other. Though seemingly unbalanced, this distribution of mass counteracts the torque of the massive 18-cylinder Guiberson Model 77 engine. The Model 77 uses diesel fuel rather than traditional aviation fuel, though this has proved a minor inconvenience within the Republic of Texas.

Overall, the Peacemaker’s performance is unexceptional, with a top speed of 255 mph and a service altitude of 26,000 feet. The counterbalancing effect of the dual hulls gives the aircraft a relatively poor turn rate and a generally lazy response to the stick, offset by the versatility of the design and its potential payload.

The standard Peacemaker carries four fixed-forward, .60-caliber cannons, two per hull, and up to eight rockets. Some variants place the left hull cannon in a hydraulically operated turret, and add a fifth gun that fires into the rear arc. This gunship modification, with its need for additional crew positions, comes at the expense of more than half the aircraft’s operational range. The Peacemaker can also serve as a light bomber, though its performance in such a role is generally inferior to dedicated fighter-bombers.

Though it lacks the agility of many other fighters, the Peacemaker has proved an effective aircraft, relying on brute force rather than finesse. Its armor and firepower make it an ideal anti-zeppelin platform. The gunship variant is perhaps the most adept at this role, able to track and engage gun and engine pods without having to resort to hard maneuvering.