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DOUGLAS DC-3

By almost anyone’s definition, the Douglas DC-3 is one of the ten most successful airplanes in aviation’s short history.By almost anyone’s definition, the Douglas DC-3 is one of the ten most successful airplanes in aviation’s short history. The airplane was the first airliner the airlines had that could make a profit carrying passengers and freight only, with no government subsidies. It was and is one of the safest and most reliable airplanes ever produced, and, with seating for 23, is still used all over the world as a commercial airliner and freight hauler. During the War the airplane was produced in several military variants, the most common of which was the C-47 troop transport. They were used in all theaters of War, and in Europe they were used heavily for the Normandy invasion as paratroop airplanes and glider tugs for the large Waco CG-4A cargo gliders. There was even a series of the C-47 that was put on amphibious floats (one set of these floats is still flying on a DC-3 on the East coast of the U.S.). There are still hundreds of DC-3’s that could be flown again, so it will probably be many decades before the last “Gooney Bird” flies.

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