US BEECH 18 SERIES - 1970s

A selection of my photographs of Twin Beech types taken in US in the late 1970s

N121SC was a 1946 Beech D18S model, with few external signs of the many modifications offered to Twin Beech owners
to improve performance or just appearance.  It was on a remote WWII ramp at Chino, California in September 1979

Parked alongside N121SC on a remote WWII ramp at Chino was this D18S N707A with a modified down-sloping nose with nose cap

N27Y was a 1956 built Beech E18S, first of the highly successful Beech Super 18 production.  Bakersfield, California September 1977

Next production model was the G18S, such as CF-BUS seen just over the Canadian border at Kamloops BC in September 1977

Final production model was the H18 with Volpar tricycle undercarriage (trigear) installed during construction at the Beech Wichita factory.
N99800 at Van Nuys, California in September 1979 had been ferried from Japan after purchase from Toa Domestic Airlines

One of the many WWII military models was the Beech AT-11 Kansan bombardier trainer.
N65860 at Opa Locka, Florida in October 1977 was being restored back to military configuration by its warbird owner

All-white freighter N6125 at Honolulu in September 1977 was a former RCAF Beech 3TM trainer, based on the D18S

Another former Canadian military Beech 3TM N516PA at Opa Locka, Florida in October 1977, with wrap-around windscreen modification.
Although built by Beech, disposals RCAF Mk.3s were not certified by FAA for passenger carriage in USA, so they became freighters.
N516PA crashed on takeoff at Miramar, Florida two years later while carrying fuel oil in a large bladder inside the cabin

In the late 1950s, hundreds of low-hours USAF C-45Gs & C-45Hs were sold by miltary disposals and flooded the US civil market.
N611WP at Rosamund, California in September 1979 was a C-45H with mods including wrap-around windscreen and unusual nose cone

Many late military disposals C-45G/Hs were fitted with modifications to improve their value, the most popular being trigear kits.
TC-45G N63310 at Los Banos, California in September 1977 had the Conrad 9800D performance mod kit, as well as Volpar trigear.
During 1972-1973 this aircraft had been based in England as CF-QIE with Quebecair

Better weather in Honolulu in September 1977 for this C-45H N1850 of Panorama Air Tour, which flew tourists on scenic
tours of the Hawaiian islands, in formations of up to fifteen Beech 18s - a sight to behold!
As well as the trigear and vista windows, it has been modified with E18S raised cabin roof and cockpit structure

Another C-45H military disposal, after trigear and other modifications changed its appearance to a sleek modern twin.
N136L was at Opa Locka, Florida in October 1979

This C-45G was rebuilt with AiResearch TPE-333 turbines as a Volpar Super Turbo 18 for Air America, which had 12 of these
turbine tri-gears for their clandestine operations in South Vietnam and neighbouring countries. This was one of the few ferried back to
USA for resale at the end of hostilities in 1975. Seen at Mojave, California in September 1979 as a freighter with Express Airways

N711FW at Monterey, California in September 1977 was one of the ultimate Beech 18 modifications: the PacAero Turbo Tradewind.
Despite the single fin, trigear and PT-6A turbine engines, it is a USAF disposals C-45G airframe

Mexican Beech D18S XB-POB was a visitor to the Confederate Air Force airshow at Harlingen, Texas in October 1979

A pair of windowless E18S freighters N5668D & N534D at Merrill Field, Anchorage Alaska in September 1979

This stretched E18S was a Volpar Turboliner II with AiResearch TPE333 turbines. Anchorage International, Alaska. September 1979

This E18S trigear N2395M at Opa Locka, Florida in October 1977 had flown for various airlines over the years, but was now
down on its luck, with dubious ownership and impounded by US Customs for nefarious activities. It vanished the following year

Beech H18 N161SP was built in 1964 with factory-fitted trigear. Seen taxying for departure from Miami, Florida in October 1977

A colourful finish: N5059 in September 1977 at Hollister, California where it was an instructional airframe with an airport technical
training school. The impressive 1976 US Bicentenary paint scheme had been applied by students of the school.
N5059 began life as a wartime USAAC AT-7 trainer before transfer to US Navy to become an SNB-2, SNB-5 and finally TC-45J.

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