View Full Version : Douglas Aircraft

9th Dec 2004, 01:20
Recently read about C-39 aircraft operating in Papua New Guinea between 1946 and 1950. Intrigued, I discovered the C-39 was a DC-2 with DC-3 outer wings and tail.

Why build the C-39 when the DC-3/C-47 was also in production? Did the C-39 fullfill a particular role?

The C-39 adds credence to a story I heard sometime long ago in my miss spent youth. Someone mentioned either a DC-2 or DC-3/C-47 operated in Australia (or PNG) during the war, with a DC-3 wing outer on one side, DC-2 wing outer on the other. Anyone else heard of this - would be interested to know if it was true.

Lastly, around six DC-5's ex KNILM came to Australia during the war and were operated by either civilian or military crews (or a mix) on the Biscuit Bomber runs to PNG and Indonesia. I know some of the DC-5's carried a civil Government registration (VH-CX series) and possibly a US military number. Was a "C" series designator given to the DC-5?

twenty eight
9th Dec 2004, 01:47
The DC 2 1/2 is famous but it was in China that it happend see the full story here (http://www.douglasdc3.com/dc2half/dc2half.htm) .

Fris B. Fairing
9th Dec 2004, 03:45

According to the Putnam book on Douglas, there were 35 C-39s built, using C-33 (DC-2) fuselages and outer wing panels with a DC-3 centre section, tail unit and undercarriage. I presume it was a means of utilising available C-33 airframes at higher weights.

There were 3 KNILM DC-5s which came to Australia, PK-ADB, ADC and ADD. They became VHCXA, VHCXC and VHCXB resp. However, these were not formal civil registrations but rather radio call-signs which were usually painted on the aeroplane without the hyphen. These call-signs were a means of identifying a motley collection of aeroplanes drawn from several sources. The former PK-ADC survived the war and was placed on the Australian register as VH-ARD. This aeroplane finished up in Israel during the 1948 war of independence and ended its days at a training school where it was presumably scrapped.

Towards the end of the war, the bureaucracy caught up with the 3 DC-5s and they were designated as C-110 and given official USAAF serials even though some had ceased to exist by this time.

Until fairly recently I knew a former KNILM engineer who held a record which I assured him would never be beaten. He flew under the Sydney Harbour Bridge twice in a DC-5!


10th Dec 2004, 00:33
Torres , seem to recall a photo of
this (http://www.ansettinwa.org/Pages/fredspages/dc5.htm) hanging in the crewroom Ansett Tulla.

23rd Dec 2004, 11:29
The DC2.5 (seems like I can't get the half to work...) crops up in the Tribute Poem too: