Skip to comments.Winged migration (Lockheed Constellation EC121)
Posted on 12/17/2009 8:45:12 PM PST by This_far
Nearly 30 years ago, a Lockheed Constellation flew to its current location at a Helena college. If all goes as planned, the 1958 plane will do the same to its new home at an Oregon museum next year.
After mechanics restore the plane, it will be flown to Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum in McMinnville, Ore., where it will be on display alongside the famed Spruce Goose, the wood-resin plane billionaire Howard Hughes developed for use in World War II but which never lifted off past its initial prototype.
What an awesome looking machine, University of Montana-Helena College of Technology Dean Daniel Bingham said of the Constellation while watching the process of moving it from the college to the Helena Regional Airport. Itsgoing to a really great home.
(Excerpt) Read more at helenair.com ...
More info here, second paragraph... http://www.conniesurvivors.com/1-connie_news.htm
You have to see the tail. In its day it was the iconic airliner. Mad Magazine did a bit on "updated" constellation names, and Cygnus the Swan became Constellation the Constellation ... very witty.
I wish I had! Never thought to stop and walk back to the pad. For it's size, black nose and lack of activity, I thought it might have been a T33.
You're right though about the tail, would have known right away even though I didn't know of the 'Baby Connies'.
I put in many hours on Connies during the Vietnam War. We had EC 121’s, electronic countermeasures, with a bunch of spooks on board. It was not pressurized so rarely went above 12,000 feet but it was very, very comfortable to fly on. We had a galley with a cook, best food I ate in VN. Our missions were 8 1/2 hours each and I flew nearly every day out of Danang Air Base. P-3’s replaced the Connies but were a lousy replacement from a comfort point of view.
It will make the trip just fine; it was built when America was still American.
You have to see the tail. I wish I had!
It takes one hell of a man to handle three pieces of tail at once.---Attributed to an unknown Connie pilot, 1996 . . .
We used to listen for your Mig calls on 243.0
Thanks for being there.
When I returned stateside from Japan and was separated from active duty in the Regular Army in July 1961, I flew home to Pennsyltucky from Oakland, CA in a Super-G Constellation. In its day, a very fine aircraft. One of my favorites, however, for aesthetic external beauty and for flight comfort is the Lockheed
L-1011 wide body.
The new Boeing 787 Dreamliner that debutted on Tuesday is a sweet-looking aircraft, as well.
I too am glad to know that this bird has been preserved (probably more to the dry climate here).
Sad that no flights will be available (like the Warbird tours).
Saw the Dreamliner landing... DAMM what a lot of wing flex!
(That’s been covered in other threads)
Not sure how it compares to my first time seeing the ground through the control access slots in the floor of a Piper Cub though.
I was there as well from April 68 to December 68. I was one of the spooks from NCS Philippines Det Bravo Danang. I flew BL-23 and BL26 the most. One of the A3’s as well. Don’t remember the tail nr. I think BL-23 was the one shot down over Korea right after I left. Were you with VQ1 Atsugi?
First time I flew in one was January 1960 from Florida to MCRD San Diego for Sea School. I was comfortably asleep - until we made the approach to the San Diego airport in downtown. Straight down with a flair at the last minute. Wow!
The Constellation has to be one of the best looking airplanes ever built. Just gorgeous lines and curves.
That museum in McMinnville is really shaping up as something pretty spectacular. It’s becoming like the Smithsonian of the West.
tks for the pic. Good looking bird when she’s got fresh makeup on. Don’t remember the wing tanks. Don’t see why they need them. We stayed up almost 17 hrs once when we had to bug out to Korat, Thailand. The only thing different about that flight I remember was they filled the belly tanks and we could not smoke until they were empty.
Agree about the Connie. Of course the tri tail was obvious in all of the advertisements that the airlines had ‘back when’.
I traveled the country a couple years back without a destination. Air museums were one of things that I did try to visit as I saw them either on a map or road sign. Most were out of the way, small, privately run with curious and sometimes one of kind displays.
Further back, I’d seen the Spruce Goose in Long Beach (& Queen Mary). Seems that I’ll have to make plans to visit the McMinnville museum per your post. (I haven’t been to the Smithsonian AM, but did spend three days at the Air Force Museum in Dayton (which wasn’t long enough).
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