C-124 Globemaster II

The linchpin of the USAF’s ability to move out sized and other heavy loads over intercontinental distances in the 1950s and 1960s, the C-124 used the C-74’s wings, engines, and tail mated to a new and much larger fuselage fitted with clam shell doors to allow bulky cargoes and vehicles to be brought aboard. “Old Shakey” was used extensively to support the action in Korea, and afterwards to build the DEW Line, move scientists and material to Antarctica, deploy Thor missiles, and numerous other missions. The YC-124B was one-off demonstrator with Pratt & Whitney T34 turboprop engines, pressurized flight deck, larger propellers, and an enlarged tail, while the C-124C had wingtip heater pods and a weather radar in a nose radome.

Even after the C-133 and C-141 entered service, C-124s would soldier on, and the final ANG aircraft were not retired until 1974. This did not however mean the end to C-124 flying, as in late 1983 a derelict Globemaster at the Aberdeen Proving Grounds was brought back to life and flown to Dobbins AFB, Georgia, where a more thorough restoration was carried out before being flown the following year to Travis AFB, California, where it remains on display today. And in October 1986, C-124C 52-0994 was flown from Selfridge, Michigan to McChord AFB, Washington for display there. This was the last Globemaster II flight; C-124C 53-0050 was still at Aberdeen in 1992, but was taken apart for transport to Hill AFB for restoration as a display.

 

Bibliography:

Photo showing a tank being driven off a C-124   Flying May 1951

Photo: In-flight view of the JC-124C with T57 engine in nose   Le Fana de L’Aviation  July 2016  p.62

 

Review: American Secret Projects 2: US Airlifters 1941-1961