I have only one DC-3 in operation. Well, we are 2000 people supporting that DC-3.
We don't fly much, only small jumps and only in the summer season - roughly 40 hours per year.
Following an engine problem some years back we have lowered MTOW so we can fly no more than 19 passengers on a roughly 200 miles range. This makes signle engine operation absolutely safe.
Last year we bought a complete overhaul of our spare P&W R-1340 engine (roughly $50k). Hopefully we won't need it for quite some years. We have it stored in a completely sealed container in totally dry nitrogen atmosphere. Warrenty lasts for five years when the seal isn't broken. Hopefully we now have engines without much heavy maintenance for a couple of decades.
The cabin interior was used when the plane was VIP transport for the royal family. It doesn't qualify for today's fire depression standards, so the plane cannot be on the ordinary civil register. We have it registered in the "experimental" class which means that only members of the club can fly as passengers.
Economically our small "airline company" performs quite well thanks to quite high fares, which cover more than half of the operations costs. Membership fees and gifts from the members cover much more than the rest, and it also helps that the crews fly for the fun of it and don't even get their direct costs (uniforms etc.) covered. Crew training flights, however, is a major expense.
We also have a few minor sponsors. A favourable fuel agreement with an oil company, and a working dress company donated dresses for all mechanics.
We were quite lucky with paint. Some years back, when it needed new paint, then it coincided with SAS's 50th anniversary. SAS repainted it for that summer in the old SAS scheme of the 50'es, and we flew some celebration flights for them. And the following winter SAS repainted it in our paint scheme simular to its air force VIP transport scheme. It saved us a minor fortune.
Most importantly the Royal Danish Air Force supplies basing and hangar including winter storage and workshop for free. And we have access to the on base officers' club for club meetings etc.
Hopefully we will still haul pax along in our DC-3 in a hundred years from now. That's at least what we plan for.
Regards, Preben Norholm
Always keep your number of landings equal to your number of take-offs