Minuteman B-1010 Light Bomber:

The Boeing 1010 was the smallest airliner produced by Boeing towards the end of the Twenty-First Century. It operated in many places where larger airliners were not considered const effective and in short shuttle type runs. It was an extremely popular design operated by both United States air carriers and air carriers outside of the United States. As a result of the aircraft being operated in many less populous areas, a surprising number of these aircraft survived the coming of the Rifts being in out of the way airports and places with less larger populations. Its large numbers may have played a key factor in the large number surviving because incredible numbers of these aircraft were destroyed as well. It was built in both passenger carrying and cargo carrying models. Like the aircraft's larger cousins, the Boeing 1010 is built from incredibly strong composites and alloys. As such, the aircraft is virtually immune to corrosion as long as it is sealed and even when not maintained, these aircraft are easy to bring back into service.

The Boeing 1010 is even smaller than the Boeing 1020 and definitely much smaller than the Boeing 1030. With its ability to make short take off and landings, this allows it to operate from much smaller fields than would be otherwise possible although aircraft with true vertical take off and landing capabilities can operate from even smaller airfields. Roads have been destroyed all over Rifts Earth and trains basically no longer exist in any form which would have been known before the coming of the Rifts. As a result, aircraft have become the work horses for transportation in many cases. There are stories that there are new Boeing 1010 airliners being produced although it is possible that the new aircraft are coming from undiscovered caches of these planes. There is an unconfirmed rumor that someone has found one of the ancient Boeing factories and has reactivated it.

Unfortunately, where commerce travels, there are those who try and take advantage of it. At one time they were called bandits and at other times they were called pirates. People on foot, stagecoaches, and ships were all targets of these groups. After the coming of the Rifts, aircraft came under attack as well. They will often try to force an aircraft to make an emergency, or crash, landing and plunder what is inside not caring if they killed the crew of the aircraft they were attacking or not. Aircraft like the Boeing 1010 are quite fast, just below the speed of sound, and generally only high tech fighters can catch them. Some bandits have these fast fighters and in an effort to defend these transports some were armed with defensive weaponry. Some groups prefer to escort these transports with fighters of their own but that can get expensive. For most converted airliners, pulse lasers are mounted for self defense. If a bandit finds their target firing back, they will often break off. As well, some transports are armed with missiles which offer greater range.

As with larger airliners, some of these aircraft were operated by the military. These carried self defense systems including jamming and flares. Along with civilian versions of the airliners, some of these survived. More aircraft were converted to military roles after the coming of the Rifts. One of the more effective designs is to convert these aircraft to heavy missile platforms. This is similar to a pre-Rifts idea to convert the 747 airliner to a missile platform as a replacement for the aging B-52 bomber. This was around the time which the B-1 Bomber program was canceled and the B-1 program was later reinstated. As a result, the idea was pursued at the time but after the coming of the Rifts and a lack of bomber design, the idea was fully developed.

Several companies offer conversions of these airliners with Golden Age Weaponsmiths one of the best known. Another well know conversion is the Minuteman conversion, considered to be one of the best conversions of these airliners available. The Minuteman conversion is available for many different civilian airline designs. The conversion can be done on either passenger versions or cargo version. Passenger versions have to be stripped of all seating and extras before they can be converted. In place of a passenger or cargo compartment, the light airliner carries a large missile bay with rotary launchers. The conversion of the Boeing 1010 airliner is designated the Minuteman B-1010. The converted airliners have a smaller payload than its larger cousins and can carry only forty long range missiles compared to one hundred for the Minuteman B-1020. Like other conversions, the sides of the fuselage have the main launch tubes. Defensive mounts are also reduced, with a pair of medium range missile launchers but with a payload of only twelve missiles per launcher. The bomber also mounts a single pulse laser turret above the fuselage. Because the aircraft does not have any defensive weaponry on the bottom, it is best to escort these bombers with fighters to protect the bomber's weak spot. While the electronics which Boeing mounted in their airliners were excellent, they were not designed for combat aircraft and lacked any kind of long range radar. These systems are all back-fitted into the Minuteman B-1010 as well as non military versions being outfitted with the defensive suite already carried on versions of the airliner operated by the military.

Because these airliners carry less missiles than its larger cousins and are not extremely fast, the Coalition is less concerned about converted Boeing 1010 airliners. It is not to say that they will not shoot one down which they consider armed but are more apt to make good target identification before engaging one of these airliners. As a result, it is less likely to be shot down by the Coalition by accident. This is not to say that these converted airliners cannot be incredibly effective in the hands of those who know how to operate them. Several mercenary companies operate a number of these converted light airliners.

Model Type: Minuteman B-1010
Class: Light Bomber (Converted Light Passenger Airliner)
Crew: Four (Pilot, Co-Pilot, Weapon Master, and One Gunners
Passengers: 4 Passengers

M.D.C. by Location:

Long Range Missile Launcher Doors (2, sides):100 each
Retractable Medium Range Missile Launchers (2):80 each
Pulse Laser Turrets (1):60 each
[1] Wings (2):200 each
[2] Elevators (2):50 each
[2] Rudders (2):50 each
Front Cargo Bay Doors (Heavy Cargo Versions):80
Side Doors (2):40 each
[2] Engines (2):180 each
Reinforced Pilot’s Compartment / Cockpit:120
[3] Main Body:400
Landing Gear (3):20 each

[1] Destroying a wing will cause the plane to crash.
[2] Destruction of rudders or one elevator will still allow the aircraft to be controlled by the varying of power levels of the engines but aircraft has a penalty of -10 to dodge, and a -30% penalty to all piloting rolls. Destruction of both of the elevators will leave the plane uncontrollable. The destruction of one engine will reduce the aircraft's top speed by half and give the pilot a -2 penalty to dodge as well as giving a 10% penalty to piloting. Destruction of both engines will cause the aircraft to crash.
[3] Depleting the M.D.C. of the main body will shut the aircraft down completely, rendering it useless and causing it to crash if in flight.

Driving on Ground (Taxiing): Only possible for take offs and landings as well as for parking and storage. Speed is 40 mph (64 kph) when traveling and not on take off or landing.
Flight: The Minuteman B-1010 has the ability to make short take-offs and landings. It has a maximum speed of Mach 0.98 (646.8 mph /1,040.92 kph) and a cruise speed of Mack 0.95 (627 mph / 1,009.06 kph.) Maximum altitude is 60,000 feet (18,288 meters)
Range: Due to Fusion engine effectively unlimited range, need to cool down after 16 hours of flight at maximum speed. At cruising speed, range is increased to 24 hours of flight.

Statistical Data:
Length: 129.59 feet (39.5 meters)
Wingspan: 93.5 feet (28.5 meters)
Height: 41.01 feet (12.5 meters)
Weight: 72.5 tons (65.77 metric tons) fully loaded, 42.5 tons (38.55 metric tons) empty
Power Source: Nuclear, Should have an average life span of 10 years.
Cargo: Minimal (Storage for equipment for the bomber crew). Does not include ordnance bay. Ordnance bay, of emptied of ordnance can carry up to 27.6.3 tons (25 metric tons)
Black Market Cost: 45 million.

Weapon Systems:

  1. High-Powered Laser Turret (1): The bomber mounts one turret behind the medium range launchers on the top of the bomber. This weapon system is a relatively simple adaption of the laser elements of the JA-12 Juicer Assault Rifle mounted into turrets. In addition to being retractable, the turrets have the ability to rotate 360 degrees and have a 90 degree arc of fire. The laser cannons pull power directly from the fusion reactor of the aircraft. The turrets are both radar and infrared guided and has a +4 to hit when set to automatic firing and uses bonuses of gunner when fired on manual. Primary target for defense laser systems is missiles which is considered to be one of the biggest threats. When controlled manually, weapon mounts are usually controlled by the two secondary crew members.
    Maximum Effective Range: 4,000 feet (1,200 meters).
    Mega Damage: 4D6 for single shot and 1D6x10+10 for three round burst from cannon.
    Rate of Fire:Equal to gunner's hand to hand (When Automated, can fire up to 6 times per melee and has +4 to strike)
    Payload: Unlimited (Draws Power off the main engines).
  2. Long Range Missile Launchers: These launchers are on either side or the converted airliner with missiles being carried in the converted passenger compartment. The launcher can use a vast variety of missiles including surface skimming missiles and rocket propelled torpedoes. Long range missiles are normally used against large targets and aircraft / missiles. About half of all missiles carried are fusion warheads and most missiles are normally smart missiles.
    Maximum Effective Range: As per long range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Mega Damage: As per long range missile type (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Rate of Fire: Can fire long range missiles one at a time or in volleys of two (2), four (4), eight (8), or ten (10) long range missiles per launcher per melee. Missile cells are automatically reloaded and are ready to fire next melee.
    Payload: 40 Long Range Missiles Total.
  3. Medium Range Missile Launchers (2): Mounted in retractable launchers on either side of the bomber just behind the cockpit. The launchers only extend when about to be fired and are virtually concealed when not in firing mode and do not produce drag when fully retracted. Each launcher has two ready to fire missiles. The launchers are reloaded from a magazine by an automatic reload system within the bomber's body. Weapon can be controlled by any of the bomber's crew although most commonly controlled by the pilot or co-pilot.
    Maximum Effective Range: Varies with medium range missile type; Usually plasma or armor piercing are carried (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Mega Damage: Varies with medium range missile type; Usually plasma or armor piercing are carried (See revised bomb and missile tables for details.)
    Rate of Fire: Can fire missiles one at a time, or in volleys of two (2) or four (4) missiles.
    Payload:Twelve (12) missiles in magazine for each launcher plus two in each of the launchers.
  4. Anti-Missile Chaff Dispenser: Located at the very tail of the aircraft are two chaff dispensers. When tailed by a missile, a cloud of chaff and other obtrusive particles can be released to confuse or detonate the enemy's attack. Rifts Earth decoys systems are assumed to not operate against Phase World missiles due to technological difference. Reduce effects by 20% against smart missiles (Add +20% to rolls for smart missiles.)
      01-50 Enemy missile or missile volley detonates in chaff cloud - Missiles are all destroyed.
      51-75 Enemy missile or missile volley loses track of real target and veers away in wrong direction (May lock onto another target.)
      76-00 No effect, enemy missile or missile volley is still on target.
    Also note that the chaff cloud will also blind flying monsters that fly through cloud. They will suffer the following penalties: reduce melee attacks/actions, combat bonuses, and speed by half. Duration: 1D4 melee rounds.
    Payload: Eight (8)

Special Equipment:
The aircraft has all the standard features of a standard fighter (same as standard robot including loudspeaker and microphone on this aircraft) plus these special features listed..

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Writeup by Kitsune (E-Mail Kitsune).

Copyright © 2007, Kitsune. All rights reserved.