Lockheed Constellation Survivors

N749NL c/n 2604

L749A N749VR November 15, 1997 L749A N749NL October 7, 2001 L749A N749NL May 30, 2002
This is a classic "before" picture taken on November 15, 1997 before she was beautifully restored (RM Pettersen) Pictured on October 7, 2001 after the first year's restoration effort had been completed...what a difference from the 1997 photo! (RM Pettersen) Patiently waiting to get back in the air on a gorgeous day at Lelystad in June 2009
(Terry Wall)
  • Current registration - N749NL
  • Delivered to USAF January 1949 as C-121A 48-612
  • Flew the Westover AFB-Rhein-Main route in support of the Berlin Airlift
  • Converted to a VC-121A in 1950 and flew VIP missions for the remainder of its USAF career
  • Used by General Eisenhower in Europe January to June 1951
  • Retired by USAF and flown to Davis Monthan AFB for storage October 1967
  • One of five VC-121A's sold to Christler Flying Service at DoD auction on May 5, 1970
  • Registered N9465 on July 10, 1970 and converted to an agricultural sprayer by Desert Air in Tucson, AZ
  • Stored in San Juan, PR after the 1978 spraying season with engine problems caused by a ham fisted flight engineer
  • To Beaver Air Spray April 1979
  • To Les Arrosages Castor, Inc as C-GXKR May 1979
  • To Conifair Aviation, Inc April 1980
  • Stored at St. Jean, Quebec after 1983 spraying season
  • To Forest Industries Flying Tankers Ltd ~1987 as source of engines/propellers for their Martin Mars water bombers
  • To Vern Raburn September 2, 1993 as N749VR on behalf of the Stichtling Constellation Club Nederland
  • Ferried Mont Joli, Canada to Avra Valley, AZ September 9-12, 1994
  • Curtis Electric props were immediately sent back to Canada after flight
  • To the Dutch Constellation Association (Stichting Constellation Nederland) in October 1995
  • To the Dutch Aviodrome Museum in early 2001
  • Restoration began March 2001 and the aircraft was flown to Schiphol Airport, Amsterdam using borrowed Curtis Electric Props and number three engine in September 2002
  • During restoration at Avra Valley, the museum purchased three engines from Ralph Dominquez. These engines had been salvaged from L749A N6011C (c/n 2647) in Arica, Chile
  • Two engines installed at Avra Valley and the third after aircraft arrived at Schiphol Airport
  • Museum could not find replacement props and modified aircraft to accept Hamilton Standard Super Constellation props
  • First flight in KLM colors and with new props was made on July 2, 2004
  • Aircraft flew from Amsterdam to Aviodrome's facility at Lelystad same day
  • #3 engine experienced a failure on July 5, 2004
  • On display at Dutch Aviodrome Museum at Lelystad
  • Two engines salvaged in April 2006 from L749A N494TW, which is on display at the Korean Air Museum in South Korea. One of the engines will be used to replace the unserviceable #3 engine and allow flight operations to resume in 2007
  • #3 engine installed and successfully tested on October 17 and 21, 2006
  • The cost of insurance kept the aircraft grounded in 2007
  • FAA issues with crew certification have kept the aircraft grounded in 2008
  • Engines run regularly and a high speed taxi run was performed on May 19, 2009
  • About the same time as the high speed taxi run, the board of directors made the decision to at least temporarily delay the aircraft's first flight since July 2004
  • Aircraft did not fly during 2009 and placed back inside hangar for winter in November 2009
  • Aviodrome staff preparing necessary documentation to obtain board approval to fly aircraft during the 2010 airshow season
  • Aviodrome filed for bankruptcy in December 2011
  • Aviodrome acquired by Dutch Libema Groep on March 23, 2012 and reopened as an aviation theme park in April 2012
  • Currently on static display inside the hangar at Lelystad

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