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Photo ID: 1015021
click image to enlarge
Model: DC-3B DST, C-84 Registration: NC17314
Year: 1937 Serial Number: C/N 1924, 42-57511
Engine(s): Wright R1820-G102, 1100-HP Owner: Transcontinental & Western Air (TWA)
Location: Photographer: From the Ken Stoltzfus collection
Date: 1937-39 Present Registration: Same, but aircraft destroyed in 1959 Present Owner (FAA info): General Airways, Portland, OR
Notes: 6/15/04 - Here's a rare oldie and about as original as you can get! It is a DC-3B, built under ATC #635 instead of #618 or 669 like most DC-3 and C-47's we know. About ten aircraft were built under ATC #635, all DC-3B's. I didn't even know there was such a thing!

Transcontinental & Western Air (Trans World Airlines after May 1950) bought several new DST aircraft. They were built in Santa Monica and NC17314 was delivered May, 1937. The Douglas Sleeper Transport version of the DC-3 is identified by the little upper-berth windows above the main cabin windows.

Actually, TWA's DST aircraft were a "Half-Sleeper". For night flights they had eight berths (four upper, four lower) in the front of the cabin and seven to nine reclining arm-chairs, and carried 23 passengers during the day. Quite an innovative concept! TWA was doing three daily California/New York trips by 1937.
 

Photo ID: 1015022
click image to enlarge
Notes: Loading baggage in the aft compartment. This kind of passenger carrying was short-lived for '1924. In June 1942 the USAAF said, "We need your airplane!", and it became 42-57511. It is one of four such aircraft that became C-84's and were used as military transports.
Photographer: From the Ken Stoltzfus collection
 

Photo ID: 1015023
click image to enlarge
Notes: NC17314, "The Lindbergh Line, Sky Sleeper 352". It's all there! The Lindberg name was not used after Howard Hughes bought controlling interest in TWA in 1939.

The aircraft came back to Transcontinental & Western in December 1944 as NC17314. In May 1950 it was registered to Trans World Airways as N17314 and somewhere along the way there it had nearly 19,000 hours total time. Union Steel & Wrecking Co. owned it in 1953, and finally General Airways
Photographer: From the Ken Stoltzfus collection
 

Photo ID: 1015024
click image to enlarge
Notes: It looks like suitcases inside the forward baggage door. There was quite a large baggage area between the crew and passengers.

Many early DC-3s were built with Wright R1820's, without cowl flaps. Almost without exception these aircraft were modified to higher horsepower 1820's, with cowl flaps, or to P&W R1830's. NC17314 was converted to the 1200-HP, R1820-202A in 1941 and would have had cowl flaps after that. (They are required, in order to pull 1200-HP or more.) It was then a DC-3B-202A.

I have flown N17334, c/n 1920, which was built with these same engines but has been modified to 1350-HP, R1820-56's. It is quite a performer!
Photographer: From the Ken Stoltzfus collection
 

Photo ID: 1015025
click image to enlarge
Notes: That's your counterweighted, Hamilton Standard 3E50 constant speed, non-feathering prop. I highly suspect that there was a fair amount of activity and verbiage in the in the cockpit when an engine quit at gross weight and the prop wind milled. The drag is incredible!

N17314 had a sad ending. It crashed in February 1959, killing two of three crew and one of 25 passengers. An accident report says, "The General Airways DC-3 was being used for a Civil Air Movement of military personnel from Boise to Lackland AFB via Pueblo. On the final leg of the flight icing weather conditions were encountered. The accretion of ice on the aircraft became critical and the flight crew attempted to reach Kerrville but ran out of fuel, crash-landed in trees and caught fire. PROBABLE CAUSE: "The captain's poor judgment in continuing into known and dangerous icing conditions."

Ironically (or maybe not if you know how obsolete FAA registration records are), the aircraft still appears on the FAA registry as N17314 with General Airways as the owner!
Photographer: From the Ken Stoltzfus collection
 
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