What else is there on the ramp..
Alas, not in such a good shape this Douglas A-26 Invader. This Invader actually is a movie star, but the glamour has faded.
I thought I had come across N4818E (44-35371 c/n 27400),
in 1996 in a hangar at Ephrata,WA.
Then I found
out two A-26 Invaders were used in that film, so most likely I saw
N4805E #58 (44-34121) at
hangar; that one ended up with Air Spray at Red Deer (Alberta,Canada) as C-GHZM - see MY 2006 REPORT
This Invader is not included in the collection as described by the museum's website: www.1940airterminal.org/TheHangar/
On FAA's N-inquiry I noticed TB-26C N4818E registered to Marine Aviation Museum (Houston,TX) on 09Mar2012.
I was subsequently informed by the museum:
"It does not belong to our museum and is not part of our collection.
It belongs to an individual who hangars next door to us." Michael Bludworth, volunteer at the museum, wrote me in
Dec.2015 that this "..A-26 is operated by the Vietnam War Flight Museum. Obviously not flying at the moment."
More on the Vietnam War
Flight Museum on my page dedicated to my visit to The Lone Star Flight Museum, nov. 11th.
As the nose art
depicts, it featured in a film titled Always, which is a 1989 romantic drama, directed by Steven Spielberg.
starred Richard Dreyfuss, Holly Hunter, John Goodman and Brad Johnson; its also included Audrey Hepburn's final
film appearance. The film was distributed by Universal Studios and United Artists. The two Douglas A-26C's Invaders
from Lynch Air Tankers (A-26C/TB-26C N4818E and A-26C N9425Z; see note below -Webmaster) were
featured in the film; the flying
movie being performed by well-known movie pilot Steve Hinton
and Dennis Lynch, the owner of the A-26.
|The above text confuses me, mentioning N9425Z.
By the Warbird Registry I have for the film Always
A-26 44-34121 (c/n 24700) - N4805E (
N4085E), C-GHZM - status: still @Red Deer, see Flickr) - LINK
A-26 44-35371 (c/n 28650) - N4818E - no details on history/location after 2002 - LINK
And then this 3rd candidate comes up, only A-26 on WarbirdRegistry mentioned as used in this film,
A-26 44-35721 (c/n 29000) - N9425Z, reported as in one of the hangars @Chino,CA 14May1995 - LINK
Very confused !?!
After publishing this matter in Dec.2015 on Classic-Propliners forum it was confirmed that 44-35371/N4818E and 44-34121/N4805E (correct N-number) were the two 'Fire Eaters' used in 'Always'.
So involvement of N9425Z in 'Always' is an error or the A-26 may have had other use in that film, e.g. as a camera ship. I have N9425Z photographed and described on my visit to Palm Springs Air Museum 2008.
This A-26C Invader
c/n 28650 first served the military, wearing the serial 44-35371. It has the following
history in civil aviation: to Rock Island Oil & Refining Co. of Wichita,KS (1960-1966), registered as N4818E.
Planned conversion to Monarch 26 was not completed. It was stored instead at Hutchinson,KS.
Consolidated Air Parts Corp. of Los Angeles,CA in 1967. Sold in 1967 to Denny Lynch of Lynch Air
Tankers (Billings,MT / 1967-2002). Converted to Lynch STOL 26 tanker for use in aerial firefighting.
N4818E flew as tanker #A28 (later #59). Fate struck on 28Jun75 when it was damaged, its nose gear
collapsed on landing at Billings. It was repaired though. [Source: http://napoleon130.tripod.com/id740.html]
Hope you may see a return to the skies some day!
In the background is all that remains of Douglas DC-6BF N841TA (c/n 44891).
The other sad appearance is
a Compagnie Generale Aeropostale Potez 25 (replica) F-AJDX.
This website www.deejay51.com/1940_air_terminal.htm shows it in a somewhat better condition (2013?).
Potez 25 (a.k.a. Potez XXV) was a French twin-seat, single-engine biplane designed during the 1920s -> Wikipedia
Sad to see their open air storage worsen their condition, making restoration probably an illusion.
It is obvious the central mission for the Houston Aeronautical Heritage Society is its 1940 Air Terminal Museum Project.
What I have in my database about DC-6BF N841TA:
Delivered to Canadian Pacific Airlines as CF-CZE 'Empress of Toronto' in jan.1956.
It was converted to DC-6B(F) in 1960.
Bought by World Aws and rereg'd N45502 in Nov61.
Then to Ladeco in 1972, rr CC-CEV, subsequently rereg'd CC-PJG for Cia de Renta la Portena in '79; but its fate was storage Santiago,Chile - for being declared 'without further use'.
Then Atlas Aircraft Corp. bought it in 1979 and thus became N841TA in April 1980.
As such it went to Trans Air Link in Aug82.
At somepoint it had small titles applied, 'Sky Truck', in red beneath the cockpit; this was TAL's radio callsign. N841TA was reported at Miami on 24apr93, still with Trans Air Link; from nov95 - mar96 it had not flown, and so when the socalled Corrosion Corner of MIA was closed, to make way for a commuter runway, N841TA was declared surplus with TAL and was sold to Filair in '97; it subsequently moved to nearby Opa Locka.
I think the airworthiness for N841TA was in serious jeopardy by then.
On 06oct98 it was still at Opa Locka, still with TAL titles and silver livery. Same on 04apr99.
But on 05oct2000 it was sighted at Melbourne,FL. Not long after, it was reported to be for sale, asking US$ 350.000.
On FAA's N-inq page, on 23Oct02, I found for its owner: 'Undeliverable Triennial', Owner: Trans Air Supply Corp R15Feb96.
By Feb.2003 it was subject to scrapping; the engines had gone, may have gone to N70BF operated by Florida Air Transport.
Sadly, when it was offered as a firetrainer to the Rescue Services of Melbourne, it was refused and '41TA was moved to the county trash dump!
By 26Apr03 it was still intact, sans props and engines, but scrapping was scheduled for the summer.
In nov09 the forward fuselage was reported as "propped against a shed or a building".
Then Trans Air Supply Corporation of Melbourne,FL donated the nose and front fuselage (31') of DC-6BF N841TA to The 1940 Air Terminal Museum and as such was delivered to Houston on 31Oct03.
Where it was again stored, as a 'possible future project'.
The Sikorsky S-58B N887 (c/n 58482) is a bit of an odd one here, me thinks.
In my reference guidebook (Aviation Museums and Collections of North America, by Bob Ogden, published
by Air-Britain). I had also listed a Sikorsky S-43 N440, once flown by Howard Hughes; it was expected
the collection but
probably that deal fell through. The same guidebook listed -erroneously- DC-3 CU-T1192 as well.
www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=359572518322&id=107219770980 - the deal did not come to fruition.
My guidebook did not include this fine looking
Cessna T-50 Bobcat, N78UC. Indeed a nice surprise.
On FAA's N-inquiry page I found it was registered to Dennis J. Winegarner of New Braunfels,TX; reg'd 28may08.
Michael Bludworth, volunteer at the museum, wrote me in Dec.2015 that this T-50 is on loan to the museum.