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scbriml
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Posts: 20755
Joined: Wed Jul 02, 2003 10:37 pm

Mystery C-47 at Kirtland AFB

Wed Jan 19, 2022 12:59 pm

I'm trying to identify a C-47 that's currently on display at Kirtland AFB in New Mexico - it can be seen on Google Earth at 35.054603N 106.592244W. It has been at this location for quite some time and can be seen in GE images going back to 1991! I appreciate that doesn't mean it's the same frame, but there has been a C-47 in that position since at least 1991.

This C-47 is painted in USAF Rescue colours and carries the fake serial 0-315732 (43-15732 which was really c/n 20198 w/o in Vietnam in 1962).

Photos of the plane can also be seen here:
From 2017: https://www.britmodeller.com/forums/ind ... ew-mexico/
From 1989: https://aerialvisuals.ca/AirframeDossie ... rial=62789

A possible candidate is c/n 19458 which was previously at the base painted in USAF Rescue colours and carrying the same fake serial (too much of a coincidence?) However, sources say that frame was seen as N3433E in a field opposite Basler's at Oshkosh in 2016. GE (newest image 2015) shows a row of five C-47 fuselages at location 43.971670N 88.539200W. I don't know if those frames are owned by Basler, but having contacted them, they confirmed they haven't converted c/n 19458 and it isn't in their inventory, so they haven't used it for parts either.

I have also contacted Public Relations at Kirtland and their initial response suggests the real identity of this frame is as big a mystery to them as it is to me. They are investigating further, but there's no guarantee of them being able to confirm the plane's true identity.

Does anyone know, or have any suggestions as to the possible identity of this mystery plane? Thanks.
 
texl1649
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Joined: Thu Aug 02, 2007 5:38 am

Re: Mystery C-47 at Kirtland AFB

Wed Jan 19, 2022 2:05 pm

 
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scbriml
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Re: Mystery C-47 at Kirtland AFB

Wed Jan 19, 2022 2:35 pm

texl1649 wrote:


Normally, yes.

The reply I received from USAF suggested there was no plate present when they purchased the aircraft from a private individual in California (date unknown).
 
bennett123
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Joined: Sun Aug 15, 2004 12:49 am

Re: Mystery C-47 at Kirtland AFB

Wed Jan 19, 2022 5:39 pm

https://registry.faa.gov/AircraftInquir ... mberResult

However, the address is now the Da Vita Dialysis Centre.

However, Long Beach Airport is only a short walk way.

Assuming the reg provided by aerialvisuals is correct.

After being de mobbed it was with SAS as LN-IAS from 1946 to 1952.

It was with Fairways Rotterdam in 1961 and 1963. Then with Martinair still as PH-SCC in 1966 and apparently went from Delta Air Transport, who had it in 1967 to Meridian Air Cargo in 1972.

https://abpic.co.uk/pictures/model/Doug ... 20Skytrain

https://www.facebook.com/MeridianAirCar ... 294720258/

https://www.airlinefan.com/airline-phot ... G/2910188/

https://www.planespotters.net/photo/795 ... uglas-dc-3

http://www.hilmerby.com/fleet/dc3.html
 
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N14AZ
Posts: 4351
Joined: Sat Feb 24, 2007 10:19 pm

Re: Mystery C-47 at Kirtland AFB

Wed Jan 19, 2022 6:52 pm

bennett123 wrote:
https://registry.faa.gov/AircraftInquiry/Search/NNumberResult

However, the address is now the Da Vita Dialysis Centre.

However, Long Beach Airport is only a short walk way.

Assuming the reg provided by aerialvisuals is correct.

After being de mobbed it was with SAS as LN-IAS from 1946 to 1952.

It was with Fairways Rotterdam in 1961 and 1963. Then with Martinair still as PH-SCC in 1966 and apparently went from Delta Air Transport, who had it in 1967 to Meridian Air Cargo in 1972.

https://abpic.co.uk/pictures/model/Doug ... 20Skytrain

https://www.facebook.com/MeridianAirCar ... 294720258/

https://www.airlinefan.com/airline-phot ... G/2910188/

https://www.planespotters.net/photo/795 ... uglas-dc-3

http://www.hilmerby.com/fleet/dc3.html

Are you sure about SAS? When I googled for LN-IAS I found a picture of a DC 3 in Fred Olsen colors.

Definitely an exciting history…
 
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scbriml
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Posts: 20755
Joined: Wed Jul 02, 2003 10:37 pm

Re: Mystery C-47 at Kirtland AFB

Wed Jan 19, 2022 6:55 pm

bennett123 wrote:
https://registry.faa.gov/AircraftInquiry/Search/NNumberResult

However, the address is now the Da Vita Dialysis Centre.

However, Long Beach Airport is only a short walk way.

Assuming the reg provided by aerialvisuals is correct.

After being de mobbed it was with SAS as LN-IAS from 1946 to 1952.

It was with Fairways Rotterdam in 1961 and 1963. Then with Martinair still as PH-SCC in 1966 and apparently went from Delta Air Transport, who had it in 1967 to Meridian Air Cargo in 1972.

https://abpic.co.uk/pictures/model/Doug ... 20Skytrain

https://www.facebook.com/MeridianAirCar ... 294720258/

https://www.airlinefan.com/airline-phot ... G/2910188/

https://www.planespotters.net/photo/795 ... uglas-dc-3

http://www.hilmerby.com/fleet/dc3.html


Thanks for the info, but there's an issue I'm struggling to get my head around.

Here's the only image I've been able to find of the frame with the registration N3433E clearly displayed, taken at Memphis in 1980:
Image
Source: https://www.airteamimages.com/douglas-d ... large.html

Compare with this image of the C-47 at Kirtland taken in 2017:
Image
Source: https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/490 ... 9b18_b.jpg

Note the completely different window and aerial arrangements. The aerial arrangement in the 2017 shot matches a photo taken in 1989 at Kirtland.
Image
Source: https://www.aerialvisuals.ca/Airframe/G ... 056087.jpg

Finally, this shot claims to show N3433E at Oshkosh in 2005:
Image
Source: https://abpic.co.uk/pictures/view/1001968
The window and aerial arrangement matches that of the image of N3433E taken at Memphis in 1980.
 
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scbriml
Topic Author
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Re: Mystery C-47 at Kirtland AFB

Thu Jan 20, 2022 5:24 pm

Another photographe has sent me a close crop of the wingless C-47 at Oshkosh taken in 2010 that clearly shows the registration N3433E. So there's no doubt that c/n 19458 is (or was) derelict at Oshkosh and cannot be the plane currently on display at Kirtland.

Mystery still unsolved.
 
bennett123
Posts: 11080
Joined: Sun Aug 15, 2004 12:49 am

Re: Mystery C-47 at Kirtland AFB

Thu Jan 20, 2022 7:16 pm

N14AZ wrote:
bennett123 wrote:
https://registry.faa.gov/AircraftInquiry/Search/NNumberResult

However, the address is now the Da Vita Dialysis Centre.

However, Long Beach Airport is only a short walk way.

Assuming the reg provided by aerialvisuals is correct.

After being de mobbed it was with SAS as LN-IAS from 1946 to 1952.

It was with Fairways Rotterdam in 1961 and 1963. Then with Martinair still as PH-SCC in 1966 and apparently went from Delta Air Transport, who had it in 1967 to Meridian Air Cargo in 1972.

https://abpic.co.uk/pictures/model/Doug ... 20Skytrain

https://www.facebook.com/MeridianAirCar ... 294720258/

https://www.airlinefan.com/airline-phot ... G/2910188/

https://www.planespotters.net/photo/795 ... uglas-dc-3

http://www.hilmerby.com/fleet/dc3.html

Are you sure about SAS? When I googled for LN-IAS I found a picture of a DC 3 in Fred Olsen colors.

Definitely an exciting history…


What date was the Fred Olsen picture?.
 
User avatar
N14AZ
Posts: 4351
Joined: Sat Feb 24, 2007 10:19 pm

Re: Mystery C-47 at Kirtland AFB

Fri Jan 21, 2022 7:40 am

bennett123 wrote:
N14AZ wrote:
bennett123 wrote:
https://registry.faa.gov/AircraftInquiry/Search/NNumberResult

However, the address is now the Da Vita Dialysis Centre.

However, Long Beach Airport is only a short walk way.

Assuming the reg provided by aerialvisuals is correct.

After being de mobbed it was with SAS as LN-IAS from 1946 to 1952.

It was with Fairways Rotterdam in 1961 and 1963. Then with Martinair still as PH-SCC in 1966 and apparently went from Delta Air Transport, who had it in 1967 to Meridian Air Cargo in 1972.

https://abpic.co.uk/pictures/model/Doug ... 20Skytrain

https://www.facebook.com/MeridianAirCar ... 294720258/

https://www.airlinefan.com/airline-phot ... G/2910188/

https://www.planespotters.net/photo/795 ... uglas-dc-3

http://www.hilmerby.com/fleet/dc3.html

Are you sure about SAS? When I googled for LN-IAS I found a picture of a DC 3 in Fred Olsen colors.

Definitely an exciting history…


What date was the Fred Olsen picture?.

I was referring to this picture: https://digitaltmuseum.no/021015545932/ ... -fred-olse

Unfortunately no date.

But I found another picture which says 1959. Not sure if I am allowed to post a link…
 
bennett123
Posts: 11080
Joined: Sun Aug 15, 2004 12:49 am

Re: Mystery C-47 at Kirtland AFB

Fri Jan 21, 2022 6:58 pm

That would be consistent with SAS having it between 1946 and 1952.
 
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N14AZ
Posts: 4351
Joined: Sat Feb 24, 2007 10:19 pm

Re: Mystery C-47 at Kirtland AFB

Sat Jan 22, 2022 11:09 am

bennett123 wrote:
That would be consistent with SAS having it between 1946 and 1952.

Yes, that’s what I thought as well (in the meantime). Flew for SAS first and became a Fred Olsen aircraft later on.

Sorry if this is considered as off-topic. That DC 3 in creme Fred Olsen colors in front of this old hangar is just so beautiful

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