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Lockheed L-1049H Super Constellation N6937C
Planes and Choppers
No: 6649   Contributor: Peter Langsdale   Year: 2003   Manufacturer: Lockheed   Country: USA
Lockheed L-1049H Super Constellation N6937C

C/n 4830, photographed at the Dayton Air Show on 17 July 2003.
This Constellation, named "Star of America" was owned by the Airline Historical Society of Kansas City, now called the Airline History Museum.
In 1986 a group of dedicated Kansas City based aviation enthusiasts decided they were going to find, acquire, and restore to as good as new condition a Lockheed Super G Constellation, model L-1049G. By that time the "Connie", as it was affectionately called, had disappeared from the skies. After much detective work, they found a derelict Connie, registration number N6937C, in storage at Falcon Field in Mesa, Arizona. It was one of the last Constellations off Lockheed's assembly lines in 1958, and was built as a cargo aircraft for Slick Airways. It passed through many hands after being sold by Slick Airways, and had been parked at Falcon Field nine years earlier, much the worse for wear, after its life as a bug sprayer in Canada was over.
After an incredible nine weeks in the desert, an amazing, against-all-odds effort by the members of the newly formed "Save A Connie" organization (now doing business as the Airline History Museum) restored this aircraft to airworthiness. They ferried her to Kansas City, Missouri navigating by compass and by following roads, where it began its transformation from a drab, worn out bug sprayer into what many consider the most beautiful aircraft to ever have graced the skies.
After 18 months in the hangar at Kansas City Downtown Airport, the "Connie" emerged, resplendent in her new "Save A Connie" livery. The Lockheed Constellation was converted from cargo to passenger configuration. She promptly began flying the Airshow circuit, where she continues to awe and inspire. In the late 90's, employees from TWA's Kansas City overhaul base donated a completely new paint job in the original TWA colors.
The "Star of America" has been involved in television and movie releases, as well as several television commercials. She was featured in the Arts and Entertainment documentary entitled First Flights, narrated by Astronaut Neil Armstrong, and the film "Voyager" released in the U.S. in 1992. The Connie was also used for interior scenes for the movie, "Ace Ventura - When Nature Calls", in 1995, starring actor Jim Carrey.
Picture added on 09 October 2008
This picture is in the following groups
Dayton Air Show, USA
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Latest news on this aircraft from the conniesurvivors web site:
Constellation News Update – June 30, 2008
There is encouraging news from the folks at the Airline History Museum in Kansas City about their Super Connie N6937C. Since suffering a #2 engine failure in July 2005 the aircraft has been grounded. The engine has been replaced and Larry Lillge, the Museum’s Director, reports that recently all engines have been successfully ground tested. The museum is in the process of hiring a new maintenance director who will be charged with maintaining the aircraft. He is a retired TWA/AA senior mechanic and it is hoped that all of the maintenance checks can be completed this summer in preparation for FAA certification. Next on the agenda is flight crew certification, which will involve check rides in the aircraft. Anyone who flies these days is feeling pain at the gas pump and with the Super Connie burning 500 gallons per hour, at $6.00 per gallon, the museum faces a major challenge in keeping the thirsty airliner fed with gas and oil. The museum has set a goal to get the aircraft back in the air later this year and to rejoin the airshow circuit in 2009. She will make an appearance at the Kansas City Air Show on August 23-24 but this only involves towing her across the field, where she will be joined by the museum’s M404 and DC-3.

Added by Peter John Langsdale on 13 October 2008.
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