Well, saw one in flight today I’ve never seen before. I’ve actually seen the very aircraft a few times, but never flying.
That’s a Bell P-63 KingCobra. An evolution of the P-39 AirCobra, it wasn’t widely used in the Army Air Forces, but many of them were sent to the USSR, who were quite happy with it.
One variant of the P-63 did see service with the US, and in a rather unusual role at that. The RP-63 was stripped of armament and it’s normal armor. In its place, most of the airframe was covered with over a ton of sheet metal armor. It’s role was to serve as a live target for bomber gunners in training. Fitting with sensors that detected the impact of rounds, the RP-63 had a light on the prop spinner that would flash when the plane was hit. Special frangible ammunition was used.
I’m guessing getting a slot as an RP-63 pilot wasn’t a reward for jobs well done.