The Beechcraft Model 18 (or "Twin Beech", as it is also known) is a 6- to 11-seat, twin-engined, low-wing, tailwheel light aircraft manufactured by the Beech Aircraft Corporation of Wichita, Kansas. Continuously produced from 1937 to November 1969 (over 32 years, a world record at the time), over 9,000 were built, making it one of the world's most widely used light aircraft. Sold worldwide as a civilian executive, utility, cargo aircraft, and passenger airliner on tailwheels, nosewheels, skis, or floats, it was also used as a military aircraft.
During and after World War II, over 4,500 Beech 18s were used in military service—as light transport, light bomber (for China), aircrew trainer (for bombing, navigation, and gunnery), photo-reconnaissance, and "mother ship" for target drones—including United States Army Air Forces (USAAF) C-45 Expeditor, AT-7 Navigator, and AT-11 Kansan; and United States Navy (USN) UC-45J Navigator,SNB-1 Kansan, and others. In World War II, over 90% of USAAF bombardiers and navigators trained in these aircraft.
Beechcraft AT-11 over the West Texas prairies, around 1944
Private Beech H18 with the optional tricycle undercarriage visiting Lannion, France
By the late 1930s, Beechcraft management speculated that a demand would exist for a new design dubbed the Model 18, which would have a military application, and increased the main production facilities. The design was mainly conventional for the time, including twin radial engines, all-metal semimonocoque construction with fabric-covered control surfaces, and tailwheel undercarriage. Less conventional was the twin-tailfin configuration. The Model 18 can be mistaken for the larger Lockheed Electra series of airliners, which closely resemble it. Early production aircraft were powered either by two 330-hp (250-kW) Jacobs L-6s or 350-hp (260-kW) Wright R-760Es. The 450-hp (336-kW) Pratt & Whitney R-985 became the definitive engine from the prewar C18S onwards. The Beech 18 prototype first flew on January 15, 1937.
The aircraft has used a variety of engines and has had a number of airframe modifications to increase gross weight and speed. At least one aircraft was modified to a 600-hp (447-kW) Pratt & Whitney R-1340 powerplant configuration. With the added weight of about 200 lb (91 kg) per engine, the concept of a Model 18 fitted with R-1340 engines was deemed unsatisfactory due to the weakest structural area of the aircraft being the engine mounts. Nearly every airframe component has been modified.
In 1955, deliveries of the Model E18S commenced; the E18S featured a fuselage that was extended 6 in (150 mm) higher for more headroom in the passenger cabin. All later Beech 18s (sometimes called Super 18s) featured this taller fuselage, and some earlier models (including one AT-11) have been modified to this larger fuselage. The Model H18, introduced in 1963, featured optional tricycle undercarriage. Unusually, the undercarriage was developed for earlier-model aircraft under an STC by Volpar, and installed in H18s at the factory during manufacture. A total of 109 H18s was built with tricycle undercarriage, and another 240 earlier-model aircraft were modified with this.
Construction of the Beechcraft Model 18 ended in 1970 with a final Model H18 going to Japan Airlines. Through the years, 32 variations of the basic design had flown, over 200 improvement modification kits were developed, and almost 8,000 aircraft were built. In one case, the aircraft was modified to a triple tail, trigear, humpbacked configuration and appeared similar to a miniature Lockheed Constellation. Another distinctive conversion was carried out by Pacific Airmotive as the PacAero Tradewind. This featured a lengthened nose to accommodate the tricycle nosewheel, and the Model 18's twin tailfins were replaced by a single fin.
Beechcraft 18 on floats
Production got an early boost when Nationalist China paid the company US$750,000 for six M18R light bombers, but by the time of the U.S. entry into World War II, only 39 Model 18s had been sold, of which 29 were for civilian customers. Work began in earnest on a variant specifically for training military pilots, bombardiers, and navigators. The effort resulted in the Army AT-7 and Navy SNB. Further development led to the AT-11 and SNB-2 navigation trainers and the C-45 military transport. The United States Air Force (USAF) Strategic Air Command had Model 18 variants (AT-11 Kansans, C-45 Expeditors, F-2 Expeditors (the "F" standing for "Fotorecon", short for "photographic reconnaissance"), and UC-45 Expeditors) from 1946 until 1951. From 1951 to 1955, the USAF had many of its aircraft remanufactured with new fuselages, wing center sections, and undercarriages to take advantage of the improvements to the civil models since the end of World War II. Eventually, 900 aircraft were remanufactured to be similar to the then-current Model D18S and given new designations, constructor's numbers, and Air Force serial numbers. The USN had many of its surviving aircraft remanufactured, as well, these being redesignated as SNB-5s and SNB-5Ps. The C-45 flew in USAF service until 1963, the USN retired its last SNB in 1972, while the U.S. Army flew its C-45s until 1976. In later years, the military called these aircraft "bug smashers" in reference to their extensive use supplying mandatory flight hours for desk-bound aviators in the Pentagon.
Beech 18s were used extensively by Air America during the Vietnam War; initially more-or-less standard ex-military C-45 examples were used, but then the airline had 12 aircraft modified by Conrad Conversions in 1963 and 1964 to increase performance and load-carrying capacity. The modified aircraft were known as Conrad Ten-Twos, as the maximum takeoff weight (MTOW) was increased to 10,200 lb (4,600 kg). The increase was achieved by several airframe modifications, including increased horizontal stabilizer angle-of-incidence, redesigned undercarriage doors, and aerodynamically improved wingtips. Air America then had Volpar convert 14 aircraft to turboprop power, fitted with Garrett AiResearch TPE-331 engines; modified aircraft were called Volpar Turbo Beeches, and also had a further increase in MTOW to 10,286 lb (4,666 kg).
The wing spar of the Model 18 was fabricated by welding an assembly of tubular steel. The configuration of the tubes in combination with drilled holes from aftermarket STC modifications on some of these aircraft have allowed the spar to become susceptible to corrosion and cracking while in service. This prompted the FAA to issue an Airworthiness Directive in 1975, mandating the fitting of a spar strap to some Model 18s. This led, in turn, to the retirement of a large number of STC-modified Model 18s when owners determined the aircraft were worth less than the cost of the modifications. The corrosion on unmodified spars was not a problem; it occurred due to the additional exposed surface area created through the STC hole-drilling process. Further requirements have been mandated by the FAA and other national airworthiness authorities, including regular removal of the spar strap to allow the strap to be checked for cracks and corrosion and the spar to be X-rayed. In Australia, the airworthiness authority has placed a life limit on the airframe, beyond which aircraft are not allowed to fly.
First production model with seating for two pilots and seven or eight passengers, fitted with Wright R-760E-2 engines of 350 horsepower (260 kW), MTOW: 6,700 lb (3,000 kg)
Version of Model 18A capable of being fitted with skis or Edo 55-7170 floats; MTOW: 7,200 lb (3,300 kg)
Improved model with increased range and useful load, fitted with 285 hp (213 kW) Jacobs L-5 engines
Version of Model 18B capable of being fitted with skis or floats.
Variant with seating for two pilots and nine passengers, fitted with Jacobs L-6 engines of 330 horsepower (250 kW), MTOW: 7,200 lb (3,300 kg).
Version of Model 18D capable of being fitted with skis or Edo 55-7170 floats, MTOW: 7,170 lb (3,250 kg)
Variant of 18D with MTOW increased by 300 lb (140 kg) to 7,500 lb (3,400 kg), fitted with Pratt and Whitney R-985 engines with 450 hp each
Seaplane version of Model A18D, but same MTOW as S18D, fitted with Edo 55-7170 floats
Version fitted with Pratt and Whitney R-985 engines of 450 horsepower (340 kW), MTOW: 7,500 lb (3,400 kg)
Seaplane version of Model A18A, fitted with Edo 55-7170 floats, MTOW: 7,170 lb (3,250 kg)
Model with Pratt and Whitney R-985-A1 engines with dual-stage blower for increased power at higher operating altitudes, 450 horsepower (340 kW), seven built, one to Sweden as an air ambulance, six to Nationalist China as M18R light bombers
Nine-passenger pre-World War II civil variant, served as basis for USAAF C-45C
Nine-passenger pre-World War II civil variant, served as basis for USAAF F-2
Variant of B18S with seating for eight passengers, and equipment and minor structural changes
First post-World War II variant introduced in 1945, with seating for eight passengers and MTOW of 8,750 lb (3,970 kg), 1,035 built
Variant with Continental R9-A engines of 525 horsepower (391 kW) and MTOW of 9,000 lb (4,100 kg), introduced in 1947, 31 built.
Variant with redesigned wing and MTOW of 9,300 lb (4,200 kg); 403 built
Variant of E18S with MTOW of 9,700 lb (4,400 kg); 57 built
Superseded E18S, MTOW of 9,700 lb (4,400 kg); 155 built
Lightweight version of G18, MTOW of 9,150 lb (4,150 kg); one built
Last production version, fitted with optional tricycle undercarriage developed by Volpar and MTOW of 9,900 lb (4,500 kg); 149 built, of which 109 were manufactured with tricycle undercarriage
Six-seat staff transport based on C18S; 11 built
Eight-seat utility transport based on C18S; 20 built
Redesignation of all surviving F-2, F-2A, and F-2B aircraft by the USAF in 1948
Based on C18S, but with modified internal layout; 223 ordered, redesignated UC-45B in 1943
Two Model 18S aircraft impressed into the USAAF, redesignated UC-45C in January 1943
Designation given to two AT-7 aircraft converted as passenger transports during manufacture, redesignated UC-45D in January 1943
Based on C18S with R-985-AN3 engines; 549 built
Bombing and gunnery trainer for USAAF derived from AT-7, fuselage had small, circular cabin windows, bombardier position in nose, and bomb bay; gunnery trainers were also fitted with two or three .30-caliber machine guns, early models (the first 150 built) had a single .30-cal AN-M2 in a Beechcraft-manufactured top turret, later models used a Crocker Wheeler twin .30-cal top turret, a bottom tunnel gun was used for tail gunner training, 1,582 built for USAAF orders, with 24 ordered by Netherlands repossessed by USAAF and used by the Royal Netherlands Military Flying School at Jackson, Mississippi.
Conversion of AT-11 as navigation trainer; 36 converted
Conversion of UC-45F, modified to act as drone control aircraft, redesignated as DC-45F in June 1948
Conversion of Model 18 with nosewheel undercarriage
Volpar (Beechcraft) Super 18
Volpar (Beechcraft) Turbo 18
Beech Model 18s fitted with the Volpar MkIV tricycle undercarriage and powered by two 705-hp Garrett TPE331-1-101B turboprop engines, flat-rated to 605 hp (451 kW), driving Hartzell HC-B3TN-5 three-bladed, reversible-pitch, constant-speed feathering propellers
^Bauschspies, James S. and William E. Simpson, "Research and Technology Program Perspectives for General Aviation and Commuter Aircraft", NASA Contract NASW-3554 for NASA, Sept. 1982, N83-17454#. Retrieved: Dec. 18, 2014. (In particular, see: Table 2.4 "COMMUTER CARGO FLEET IN 1981 - TOP TEN AIRCRAFT MODELS - NUMBER IN FLEET," which notes Beech 18 units are more than the next two aircraft combined (Convair 500/680 and Douglas DC-3), and more than the next three general aviation aircraft combined.
Air Saint-Pierre is a French airline based in Saint-Pierre, Saint-Pierre and Miquelon, a French overseas collectivity. The airline operates scheduled services between the islands of Saint-Pierre and Miquelon-Langlade and to Canada. Its main base is Saint-Pierre Airport, from which it serves six destinations. In addition to the collectivity's other airport, Miquelon Airport, it serves five airports in Canada. The airline operates a fleet of an ATR 42 for international services and a Reims-Cessna F406 on the inter-island service.
The airline was founded in 1964 and originally flew in cooperation with Eastern Provincial Airways. The first aircraft was a Piper Aztec, which was put into service to a service to Sydney, Nova Scotia. During the 1970s the airline variously took into use Beechcraft Model 18 and Hawker Siddeley HS 748. Flights to Miquelon were introduced in 1979 and to Montreal two years later. A Piper Chieftain was bought in that year. ATR 42s were introduced in 1994 and services Moncton, New Brunswick and St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador were introduced in the following years.
The Alberta Aviation Museum is a museum in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. It is located on-site at the former Edmonton City Centre (Blatchford Field) Airport on the southwest corner of the field (11410 Kingsway Avenue).The museum operates daily except for Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Years Day.
Beechcraft is a brand of Textron Aviation since 2014. Originally, it was a brand of Beech Aircraft Corporation, an American manufacturer of general aviation, commercial, and military aircraft, ranging from light single-engined aircraft to twin-engined turboprop transports, business jets, and military trainers. Beech later became a division of Raytheon and later Hawker Beechcraft before a bankruptcy sale turned its assets over to Textron (parent company of Beech's cross-town Wichita rival, Cessna Aircraft Company).
The Gujarat Beechcraft incident was an event during the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965. On 19 September that year an American F-86 Sabre jet fighter of the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) shot down an Indian-registered civilian Beechcraft Model 18 twin-engine light aircraft. Balwantrai Mehta, who at the time was the chief minister of the Indian state of Gujarat, was killed in the attack along with his wife, three members of his staff, a journalist and two crew members.Qais Hussain, a PAF flying officer during the 1965 war, was the pilot who fired on the civilian aircraft under orders from his superiors. In August 2011 he wrote to Farida Singh, the daughter of the deceased civilian pilot, via email, expressing his condolences.
Linha Aérea Transcontinental Brasileira S.A. was a Brazilian airline formed in 1944 and that started scheduled flights in 1946. In 1951 it was sold to Real Transportes Aéreos, which incorporated the airline the following year.
The Lockheed Model 12 Electra Junior, more commonly known as the Lockheed 12 or L-12, is an eight-seat, six-passenger all-metal twin-engine transport aircraft of the late 1930s designed for use by small airlines, companies and wealthy private individuals. A smaller version of the Lockheed Model 10 Electra, the Lockheed 12 was not popular as an airliner but was widely used as a corporate and government transport. Several were also used for testing new aviation technologies.
Midstate Airlines (a.k.a. Mid-State Airlines, a.k.a. Midstate Air Commuter (MAC)) was an airline with its headquarters in Stevens Point, Wisconsin.It was founded by Roy P. Shwery in 1964 and provided air service out of Marshfield, Wisconsin (home to Marshfield Clinic), and Central Wisconsin Airport (CWA). The airline originally operated a fleet of Beechcraft Model 18 aircraft, and later, four Beech 99's. The airline originally flew from Marshfield, to Wisconsin Rapids, to Milwaukee, and onto Chicago. (Central Wisconsin Airport serves the communities of Stevens Point, Wausau, Marshfield, and Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin, and the smaller suburbs—Mosinee, Plover, and Rosholt—with long runways that accommodated large jet aircraft).
By the early 1970s, Midstate also was serving Hayward and Ashland, Wisconsin from the Central Wisconsin Airport and Ashland from the Minneapolis - St. Paul International Airport. One of its most fondly-remembered features was the 6:00 PM "Champagne Flight" out of O'Hare, destined for Ashland via Milwaukee, the CWA, and Hayward. Shortly after takeoff from Milwaukee, the passengers were invited to open a cooler put on board in Milwaukee and prepared by Midstate's President's wife. Typically, in the cooler were a few soft drinks, beers, Wisconsin cheese, Pringle's Newfangled Potato Chips, plastic cups and . . . one or two bottles of champagne. Somehow, this ice-breaker generated an informality and good feeling for nearly everyone on board.
In 1977 Midstate switched to 19-passenger Swearingen Metroliners.
On January 15, 1979, a Metroliner landed in Wisconsin Rapids, hydroplaned, swerved, and collided with a snowbank, resulting in 11 injuries (2 pilots, 9 passengers). Damage to the aircraft was substantial. Correction: snow storm with low visibility and no injuries.
In its heyday, Midstate operated a fleet of 19 Metroliners and added six Fokker F27 50-passenger turboprop aircraft in 1984 (which required a flight attendant and a certificate modification under FAA part 121 rules), and flew to 15 cities in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, and Chicago O'Hare airport.
The airline was purchased from Shwery by Sentry Insurance of Stevens Point, and subsequently resold to CEO and investor Bryce Appleton in 1986.
In 1986, Midstate subleased Fokker F27 aircraft to Chicago Air, a start-up carrier operated a regional service out of Chicago Midway International Airport. Midstate provided maintenance services to Chicago Air out of Central Wisconsin. However, Chicago Air went into bankruptcy the same year, and Appleton purchased what remained of the Midstate's assets from Sentry Insurance. The Chicago O'Hare takeoff and landing slots were sold off and Appleton continued to operate the Swearingen Metroliners, establishing a hub in Milwaukee. However, the airline continued to cut back service, providing charter, ceasing operations in 1989.
Otis Ray Redding Jr. (September 9, 1941 – December 10, 1967) was an American singer, songwriter, record producer, arranger, and talent scout. He is considered one of the greatest singers in the history of American popular music and a seminal artist in soul music and rhythm and blues. Redding's style of singing gained inspiration from the gospel music that preceded the genre. His singing style influenced many other soul artists of the 1960s.
Redding was born in Dawson, Georgia, and at the age of 2, moved to Macon, Georgia. Redding quit school at age 15 to support his family, working with Little Richard's backing band, the Upsetters, and by performing in talent shows at the historic Douglass Theatre in Macon. In 1958, he joined Johnny Jenkins's band, the Pinetoppers, with whom he toured the Southern states as a singer and driver. An unscheduled appearance on a Stax recording session led to a contract and his first single, "These Arms of Mine", in 1962.
Stax released Redding's debut album, Pain in My Heart, two years later. Initially popular mainly with African-Americans, Redding later reached a wider American pop music audience. Along with his group, he first played small shows in the American South. He later performed at the popular Los Angeles night club Whisky a Go Go and toured Europe, performing in London, Paris and other major cities. He also performed at the Monterey Pop Festival in 1967.
Shortly before his death in a plane crash, Redding wrote and recorded his iconic "(Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay" with Steve Cropper. The song became the first posthumous number-one record on both the Billboard Hot 100 and R&B charts. The album The Dock of the Bay was the first posthumous album to reach number one on the UK Albums Chart. Redding's premature death devastated Stax. Already on the verge of bankruptcy, the label soon discovered that the Atco division of Atlantic Records owned the rights to his entire song catalog.
Redding received many posthumous accolades, including the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award and induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the Songwriters Hall of Fame. In addition to "(Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay," "Respect" and "Try a Little Tenderness" are among his best-known songs.
Ransome Airlines was a regional airline from the United States, headquartered at Northeast Philadelphia Airport near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Founded in 1967, it operated feeder flights on behalf of different mainline carriers via specific airline brands for most of its existence: as Allegheny Commuter (1970-1982), Delta Connection (1984-1987), Pan Am Express (1987-1991) and finally Trans World Express (1991-1995).
The Tim Conway Show – the first of two television series of the name – is a 1970 American sitcom starring Tim Conway and Joe Flynn which centers on a single-plane charter airline. The show aired during periods between January 30, 1970, and June 12, 1970.The show should not be confused with The Tim Conway Comedy Hour, which aired later in 1970, or with the 1980-1981 comedy-variety series also called The Tim Conway Show.
Toa Airways (東亜航空, Tōa Kōkū) was a Japanese airline and the predecessor of Japan Air System. Founded on November 30, 1953, it merged with Japan Domestic Airlines on May 15, 1971, to form Toa Domestic Airlines, which went on to become Japan Air System.
This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.