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SB 2M-105

In the autumn of 1940, the SB-2M-105 variant was launched into full-scale production, equipped with 1,100 hp Klimov M-105 twelve-cylinder, V-shaped, water-cooled engines and VISh-22Ye propellers.

Planes of this modification were equipped with MV-3 turrets and LU hatch mounts, and they included all of the improvements which had been applied to machines of previous variants, now implemented to the fullest extent. In particular, landing headlights and cradles for the retractable ski landing gear were mounted.

Some SB 2M-105 aircraft had a new type of glazing on the pilot's cockpit's sliding canopy to improve visibility during landing and taxiing around the airfield.

A total of 6,831 SBs were produced in all versions, including about 150 SB 2M-105s, until their production ended in early 1941. The SB bomber was the first Soviet aircraft whose licensed production was organized abroad. 110 planes designated B.71 were built in Czechoslovakia.

In addition to the USSR, SB bombers were in service with Spain, China, Czechoslovakia, Bulgaria, Germany, Slovakia, and Finland.

After their combat debut in Spain, SBs came to be used in China from February 1938 onward. Bombers of this type participated in the Battles of Lake Khasan and Khalkhyn Gol. They were used in combat operations against Poland in September 1939 and in the war with Finland in the winter of 1939-40. When World War II began, the SB was the most popular Soviet bomber. They were extensively operated as day and night bombers, as well as scout planes, on the Soviet-German front until late 1943. They took part in the war with Japan in the Far East in August 1945.

The Chinese Air Force used SBs until the end of World War II, as well as during the course of China's Civil War. Czechoslovakian B.71 planes were obtained by Germans and used as auxiliary and training vehicles. Bulgarian planes participated in the invasion of Yugoslavia in April 1941.

The Finns had about 20 captured SB bombers of various versions, mainly SB 2M-103s, which they used as scouts and anti-submarine warfare patrol aircraft.

The SB aircraft were withdrawn from service with the USSR in 1946.

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