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Wednesday, May 24, 2017


This is a Lockheed Lodestar similar to the one flown by Duke Kellogg and his copilot Edwina "Eddie" Watt while Chasing Dragons.

The Lockheed 18 Lodestar was the last twin-engine transport designed by Lockheed. The prototype, a Lockheed 14 Super Electra lengthened by five feet, flew on the 21st of September, 1939. Designed for the commercial market, Lockheed found domestic sales slow due to previous commitments by airlines to buy the DC-3. A total of 96 were ordered by foreign airlines in Canada, Africa, Brazil, France, the Netherlands, Norway, South Africa, the UK and Venezuela.

The first military orders for the Lodestar came from the US Navy. In 1940, the Navy ordered three variants, an executive transport carrying seven, a personnel transport carrying 14, and a paratroop transport carrying 18. In 1941, the US Army Air Corps had 13 Lodestars built and designated them the C-57. In addition, after the attack on Pearl Harbor, a number of civilian Lodestars were requisitioned and designated the C-56. Between 1942 and 1943, the USAAC acquired 324 C-60As, 18-seat paratroop transports. Some of these aircraft were passed on to the UK. RAF versions were known as the Lodestar I (C-56), Lodestar IA (C-59), and Lodestar II (C-60), and most were operated as medium-range transports. After the war, some Lodestars were converted into executive aircraft, while others went to work for small freight operators. Less than 20 Lodestars are still airworthy in the USA today.

Ceiling 20,000 ft
Max Speed: 218 mph
Range: 1800 miles
Number Built: 500