C-46 Commando drawing

C-46 Commando drawing

Drawing of a Curtiss C-46 Commando transport

Derived from the Curtiss-wright CW-20 commercial airliner prototype, the C-46 Commando never quite gained the fame of its C-47 stablemate, despite being able to haul heavier loads. C-46 helped maintain the aerial lifeline to China over the Hump, with crews taking their often overloaded aircraft over some of the most treacherous terrain on the planet. The NMUSAF’s C-46D, 44-78018, was active until 1968, and was flight-delivered to Dayton four years later.


Photo: CW-20 fuselage under construction. Popular Aviation December 1939  p.54

Photo: CW-20 in metal finish, and with twin tails. Popular Aviation April 1940  p.61

Photo: Slick Airways C-46 preparing for takeoff. Flying August 1949  p.21

Photo: “Braniff Gets High-Powered C-46” Aviation Week December 5, 1955 p.125 N1386N with R-2800-C engines.

Photo: US Forest Service C-46 N6246  Air Classics May 1973 p.67

Color profiles of the CW-20T as G-AGDI, C-46s of the Chinese Nationalists, Lufthansa, Aeropesca Columbia, and a postwar R5C-1. Air International June 1986  p.302

Stephen Harding “Confederate Commando”  Aeroplane Monthly July 1989. A look at C-46F China Doll of the Confederate Air Force.

Photo: Nationalist Chinese C-46 at Kai Tak. Aeroplane Monthly July 1989 p.421

Photo: Rear quarter view of CW-20 G-AGDI. Aeroplane Monthly October 1989 p.602

Photo: C-46D at MASDC w/o engines. Warbirds International October 2000 p.31