Douglas VC-118A Liftmaster

Pima Air and Space Museum Aircraft

Manufacturer
Douglas
Markings
1254th Air Transport (Special Missions) Wing, Andrews AFB, Maryland, 1962
Designation
VC-118A
Serial Number
53-3240

Douglas VC-118A Liftmaster

The C-118 is a militarized version of the Douglas DC-6 airliner. Just over 100 C-118s were acquired for use by the Air Force as passenger and cargo transports. The main difference between the military and civil versions is the installation of a large cargo door on the left side of the aircraft. The C-118s were used primarily as passenger aircraft and several eventually served in the Presidential fleet. This aircraft served as the official Air Force One for President Kennedy. It was the last propeller driven aircraft to be designated as the primary Presidential transport. The VC-118A was overshadowed during its service by the introduction of the first Boeing VC-137s. President Kennedy preferred to travel in the larger, faster jet aircraft and the VC-118 was used primarily for short trips to airports that were too small for the big Boeings. Once the VC-137 became the primary Presidential aircraft the VC-118 was used as a backup plane and to transport lower ranking VIPs.

Specifications
Wingspan 117 ft 6 in
Length 105 ft 7 in
Height 28 ft 8 in
Weight 107,000 lbs (loaded)
Max. Speed 380 mph
Service Ceiling 29,000 ft
Range 4,720 miles
Engines 4 Pratt & Whitney R-2800-52W radials, 2,500 horsepower each
Crew 5, 24 passengers