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Would the Lockheed L-500 have been a good airliner?

Tue May 17, 2022 11:27 pm

Would the civil version of the C-5 aircraft have made a good wide body airliner? I realize that with a smaller wing sweep than the Boeing 747 it was probably limited in cruise speed.
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Re: Would the Lockheed L-500 have been a good airliner?

Wed May 18, 2022 12:24 am

While a high wing is great for a military airlifter because of the operating environment, frequently to less than ideal fields, it has significant disadvantages.

- Additional weight because you have to transfer loads a much longer distance between the wing box/spars and the landing gear.
- Wing box sticks through the cabin in an awkward position, cutting into useable space.

This pretty much explains why Boeing took their C-5 competitor work and used it for a clean sheet 747 design instead of modifying the aircraft into an airliner. None of the 747 proposals were high winged, though one was mid winged.

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Re: Would the Lockheed L-500 have been a good airliner?

Wed May 18, 2022 4:14 pm

No, it only seated 73 passengers. Lockheed would have have done a complete redesign as Boeing did. Great military airlifted, esp with modern engines, but uncertifiable as designed and built for a number of reasons.

The wing box doesn’t intrude on the cargo deck because it neatly divides the upper deck in half, can’t go forward to troop except by going downstairs.

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