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Photo ID: 1011252
click image to enlarge
Model: DC-3A, C-53-DO
Skytrooper
Registration: N34DF
Year: 1941 Serial Number: 4865, 41-20095
Engine(s): P&W R1830-94M
or -75, 1350-HP
Owner: Kenneth Joseph
Canton, Ohio
Location: Beach City Airport
Beach City, Ohio
Photographer: Stoltzfus, Ken
Date: 2003, November Present Registration: Same Present Owner (FAA info):
Notes: 11/11/03 - The C-53-DO Skytrooper was basically a DC-3A airliner that was taken over by the military before delivery to the airlines. FAA Spec A-669 says, “Military models C-53 - - are the same as model DC3A-S1C3G except for cabin interior, cargo compartments and minor structural differences.N34DF is one of 193 such DC-3A/C-53-DO’s, and was built with a passenger door on the left side. It probably never had a cargo door.

This DC-3 has been a world traveler. It was built by Douglas in their Santa Monica plant as Construction Number 4865, and delivered in Jan. 1942 as USAF serial 41-20095. It initially went to USAAF Bolling (Washington, DC); then to the Ferry Command in March ‘42; the North Atlantic Wing ATC (Air Transport Command, formerly 23rd AAF Ferrying Wing) in May ‘43; and DIV FEA Cairo in May ‘45. By August 1945 it was registered to Danish Air Lines as OY-DCE and was named “Gorm Viking”. They operated it until their merger with SAS, who used it until 1952.

In October, 1952 it was registered to Ramapo Foundry & Wheel Works in NY as N9959F. From there it went to Air Carriers Corp. The FAA registration was changed to N34D and the aircraft was operated by E.T. Barwick Mills, in Georgia. It was in the hands of Houston Aircraft Sales Inc., in June 1963, and went to the Ohio State Dept. of Commerce in Oct. 1964 where it became the official State aircraft. They cancelled the registration in Dec. 1983, after taking the aircraft to the USAF Museum in Dayton.
 

Photo ID: 1011253
click image to enlarge
Notes: From that time until Sept. 1990, N34D was missing from the FAA Aircraft Registry, at which time it was re-registered to Ohio University in Athens, OH, as N34DF. In October it was transferred to Kenneth Joseph, of Canton, OH. The aircraft shows N34D, but that number is assigned to another aircraft and the current FAA registry has “4865” as N34DF.
Photographer: Stoltzfus, Ken
 

Photo ID: 1011254
click image to enlarge
Notes: These are the Remmert Werner gear doors. They partially cover the landing gear area to reduce drag in flight. This aircraft has also been modified with a radar nose, taller (square) cabin windows, two picture windows, a gas-fired heater and Airstair door. I’d bet fun-money to marbles that it is a Remmert Werner (St. Louis), executive conversion.

N34DF has the 1350-HP, P&W R1830-94M or -75 engines in place of the original 1200-HP, R1830-92. This necessitates the installation of a “geared rudder tab” to assist with rudder deflection in single-engine operations.
Photographer: Stoltzfus, Ken
 

Photo ID: 1011255
click image to enlarge
Notes: Ken Joseph had a lot of work done to the aircraft before bringing it to Beach City nearly 10-years ago. In addition to other things, they did major cleanup and painting inside the nacelles and installed fresh control surfaces. He intended to finish restoring it there with new paint, interior and avionics. However, the project has stalled and N34DF is fast moving toward the point of no return. Without the major infusion of more time and money than could ever be rationally justified, the setting sun on this grand old lady of the airways is more symbolic than we DC-3 aficionados would like to admit. Only more love than rationale, could redeem her. (Aaaah - - could I get a sermon illustration out of that?)
Photographer: Stoltzfus, Ken
 
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