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Martin 404 memories

Fri Feb 20, 2004 6:21 am

Flew on these birds quite a few times ATL-JAX in the mid-60's. Ah, memories.

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Photo © Willam W. Sierra

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Martin 404 memories

Fri Feb 20, 2004 6:47 am

Back in the early 70's SO flew these all over the southern U.S. You also would see flocks of them at MEM too. Before SO had the DC-9 (1968, I believe) this was their flagship aircraft! The other type they operated at that time was the DC-3.
Walking on one of these was like going in a time machine. They were well kept, but I think they just kept the late 40's decor cleaned. The seats were on a slightly raised platform so the aisle had a sunken look. And right behind the pilot seats, you would have a stack of radio tubes for the radios and radar.
I believe they weren't used after the RC merger. I wonder where they are now? Coke cans?
Fly North Central Airlines..The route of the Northliners!
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Martin 404 memories

Fri Feb 20, 2004 10:41 am

There is one flying out of the Airliner History Museum in Kansas City alongside their Super Connie. They have a DC-3 under restoration as well.
The last of the famous international playboys
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Martin 404 memories

Fri Feb 20, 2004 10:57 am

SPACEPOPE....A H M at MKC parked the 404. It no longer goes to shows like the connie and soon to fly DC 3. They keep it spotless in their hanger. All should visit the museum at K C's Downtown airport (MKC) when in the midwest.
If two people agree on EVERYTHING, then one isn't necessary.
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Martin 404 memories

Fri Feb 20, 2004 11:17 am

1965 - flew Delta into Atlanta then got on a Southern Martin to Columbus and on down to Dothan Alabama. Next stop Fort Rucker! Went home on leave a few times from there and saw much of the South out those windows. Many of my friends told me of having them shut down and feather one engine on a flight.

My enduring memory of it was sitting just aft of an engine during night takeoffs. The cowl flaps would be wide open and the exhaust would glow white hot and the whole head and cylinder would get cherry red. The glow of it would light up inside the cowling. I think they told me they were pulling 59"hg with water injection.

Worthy of comment: That Texaco truck in the picture is pumping OIL, not gas. The fuel truck is on the other side. "Fill the oil and check the gas!"

I also recall a sign where you boarded that bragged "Radar Equipped"

Thanks for the picture. That is just how I remember it, though this must have been near the end - the baby Nine in the background in the new livery.

Happiness is not seeing another trite Ste. Maarten photo all week long.
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Martin 404 memories

Fri Feb 20, 2004 11:31 am

I've been a huge Martin 404 fan ever since I used to fly on them with Naples Airlines and PBA in the late 70's early 80's. They flew their 6 up until they ran into FAA problems in late 84. Marco Island Airways also flew 6 ex-Southern birds until about the same time. I truly miss them. I remember sitting and watching the same thing as SlamClick.
35 years of American Trans Air/ATA Airlines, 1973-2008. A great little airline that will not be soon forgotten.
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Martin 404 memories

Fri Feb 20, 2004 11:56 am

Forgot to mention because I'd just said something about it in a different thread but the movie "View From the Top" has some nice Martin 4-0-4 footage taken at IFP.

Happiness is not seeing another trite Ste. Maarten photo all week long.
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Martin 404 memories

Fri Feb 20, 2004 12:53 pm

As a child and a teenager I spent a lot of time on Piedmont's Martin 404's. Most of my trips were during the summer months, in and out of Kinston, NC.

I remember the aft ventral stairway - which seemed way cool to me as a kid.

But mostly I remember the stupifying heat in the cabin, as the plane sizzled on tarmac hot enough to fry an egg. Those of you used to air-conditioned planes have no idea how hot it could get on those props! On puddle-jumping flights, just as the temperature would finally cool down onboard, the Martin would land, the door would be opened, and the soggy heat would once again pour into the cabin.

And of course bouncing through summer thunderstorms, in a plane with an onboard temperature somewhere around 90 degrees, meant those barf bags in the seat pockets got extensive use!!!
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RE: Martin 404 Memories

Sat Mar 06, 2004 5:18 am

At the end of the prop era I tried to make as many daytrips as I could to catch them--one of the last was on SO N253S (ex EA), BTR-MSY on 9-25-73. According to my notes the 404 was removed from the BTR-MSY run soon after my flight, though as it turned out SO flew the 404 another 4.5 years. My LSU fraternity bros teased the hell out of me--some still do. Back then I thought I was the only commercial aviation fan on earth.

[Edited 2004-03-05 21:34:02]
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RE: Martin 404 Memories

Sat Mar 06, 2004 5:52 pm

Never managed to fly on one much to my regret.

The 404 was pretty well unknown in Europe, so by the time I was old enough to go to the USA they were all pretty much out of service.

First met a derelict one at Marco Island Airport. Then I saw the "Save a Connie" one at Kansas City.

An interesting aircraft.