by: Stephen T. Lawson [ ]
It was during WWII period air transport proved its significance, as an important constituent of rapid and mobile movement of troops and vehicles to distant locations. In the post-war years, with the increase of tension in the world political situation and with the beginning of the Cold War, the role of transport aviation grew even more. The United States of America, aspiring to world leadership, had to be able to place its troops in all the various corners of the world.
In 1947 the Douglas Aircraft Company radically reworked the design of the earlier C-74, building an entirely new machine. The fuselage of the airplane was considerably increased, and there appeared two clamshell doors and a hydraulic ramp in the nose, and an elevator in the rear fuselage. Each airplane was fitted with four powerful Pratt & Whitney R-4360 engines rated at 3,800 hp. The plane's 23 meter cargo compartment could contain guns, trucks, tanks and other military vehicles. It was the only aircraft at that time which could transport heavy tanks or engineering equipment such as bulldozers. As a troop transport the airplane with its double-deck fuselage could carry over 200 fully-equipped soldiers. In case of necessity the cargo compartment could be reconfigured as a flying hospital, and then the C-124 could transport 127 wounded escorted by medical staff.
The first flight of the C-124 was at the end of 1949, and six months later delivery began to the United States Air Force. From the beginning of the C-124's service career it became clear how important it was for the strategic operations of the American military. During the conflict in Korea the C-124 provided rapid movement of troops to the troubled region of South-East Asia, thus helping to stabilize the situation in that corner of the world. With the onset of the nuclear missile arms race between the USSR and the USA, it was naturally the C-124 which carried out transportation of the American Ajax then the Nike Hercules nuclear & high explosive missiles to Europe.
The majority of the 448 C-124's built went to Strategic Air Command and also to the Military Air Transport Service. These aircraft were permanently at work, as in conditions of continuous tension in the world they constantly transported both conventional and nuclear weapons, not only across America, but also beyond its territory. In addition, the C-124 took part in transportation of loads to the Sixth Continent, within the framework of research in the Antarctic Continent by the United States of America.
The intensive military career of the C-124 lasted up until the beginning of the 1960's, and only with the appearance of the more modern C-141 Starlifter was this exceptional machine relegated to the reserve ranks. They were gradually taken off from strategic operations and transferred to units of the US Air National Guard. The final flights of the C-124 for the United States Air Force were in the mid 1970's. (Info from Roden website & Wikipedia)
Decal options 1.
4 page instruction leaflet.
1 colour plan view for decal placement.
Step 1. Nose wheel well (11, 12 & 20 F)assembly.
Step 2. Cockpit (21, 22, 26 & 29 F) assembly
Step 3. Assembles Fuselage halves ( Fuzl & R), and assemblies for steps 1 &2.
Step 4. Left side stabilizer & elevator (1 & 3 C).
Step 5. Right side stabilizer & elevator (7 & 9 C).
Step 6. 2 landing gear & 4 wheels for wing wells (4 H X 2, 12 H X 2, 5 & 21 H).
Step 7. 1 nose gear & with 2 wheel for the well from step 1 (14 H X 2, 15 H X 2, 23, 25 & 28 F).
Step 8. Halves to the vertical stabilizer & rudder united (5 & 6 C).
Step 9. 4 engine façades, firewall and cowlings assembled (8, 9 & 10 H & 10, 11 F).
Step 10. Right side wing halves united with 2 engine assemblies from step 9 (2 D, 2 E & 2, 5 F).
Step 11. Left side wing halves united with 2 engine assemblies from step 9 (1 D, 1 E & 1, 2 F).
Step 12. Major components from steps 3-5, 8, 10 & 11 united.
At this point Roden notes several blister shrouds (2 V X 2, 13, 15 F & 17 H X 2) and their required locations on the undersurface of the fuselage. I would attempt this back in step 3.
Step 13. This step places the landing gear assembly from step 7 into the wheel well adding doors & struts (2 & 8 C, 27 F, 2 V X 2).
Step 14-16. These steps add shrouded actuators and 2 more blisters. (1-3, 16-20 H & 13, 15 F).
Step 17. This step places the 2 landing gear assembly from step 6 into the wheel well adding doors & struts (6,7 F & 6 H).
Step 18. The final build step adds the 3-bladed propellers (1 V X 4).
Douglas C-124A Globemaster, Military Air Transport Service, 1954.
In kit form this is the only one available at this time. There was the Combat Models 1/72nd kit and the Welsh Models 1/144th model. Both seem to be OOP. I have seen a scratchbuilt DC-124A in 1:48. . .Wow!
Air Force Legends #206 by Earl Berlin throughSteve Ginter Publications.
Aeroscale member Jeremy Coyle(Herchealer)has asked to have a crack at this kit. So off it goes to him for a blog.
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