|Type:||Passenger airliner and transport|
|Empty Weight:||16,865 lbs.|
|Gross Weight:||25,200 lbs.|
|Cruise Speed:||207 mph|
|Maximum Speed:||230 mph|
|Powerplant:||2 X Wright R-1820-G202-A, 9-cyl., radial, 1,100 hp w/ 3-blade Hamilton Standard propellers|
Considered one of the world's truly outstanding airplanes, the DC-3 was the outgrowth of the DST sleeper built at the request of American Airlines in 1935. The plane revolutionized the airline industry and in its military configuration, the C-47/C-49 “Skytrain,” it was called by General Dwight Eisenhower “one of the four most important weapons of World War II.“ More than 13,000 civilian and military versions were built from 1935 to 1947.
The DC-3 is perhaps the most famous airplane in commercial aviation as it was the first airplane to make money for its operators. It was big enough to carry enough passengers (21) to make flights profitable. Due to its versatility, rugged reliability and economy, several hundred are still in service even today, nearly 70 years after it first flew. There is a common saying that: “The only replacement for a DC-3 is another DC-3.“
The Museum's DC-3 was one of thirteen DC-3-454 transports ordered by American Airlines but taken over by the Army Air Force as a C-49J (the C-49 differed from the C-47 in that it had Wright engines, and a different seat configuration) while the plane was still on the Douglas production line in Santa Monica, CA. The completed aircraft, Serial Number 6314, was delivered on November 14, 1942 and remained within the United States during WWII transporting troops. The aircraft was released from military service on April 3, 1945, converted back to a DC-3 and recertified by the FAA on October 12, 1945, and was subsequently operated by Eastern Airlines, Purdue University, Basler Flight Services, and Florida Airmotive Services/Taino Airlines. After accumulating 53,434 flight hours, the Museum purchased this aircraft on November 1, 1992 afterwhich it was flown to Bradley Airport and put on public display.
Since 2014, it has been undergoing a restoration to reconfigure the aircraft into a classic polished aluminum skin appearance popular with the major domestic airlines of the 1940s/1950s. The livery pays tribute to the first commercial flight in 1947 into what was then Bradley International Airport (then Bradley Field) - Eastern Air Lines Flight 624. The aircraft will complete its restoration on the Museum display floor.
You can follow the restoration progress here
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