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Douglas DC3 Dakota replacement?

uk 75

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The 1950s and 1960s produced many attempts in East and West to design an aeroplane to replace the Douglas DC3 and C47 Dakota.
None that flew seemed to fill the gap, and many Daks flew on. Or do you think there was a built or unbuilt Dak replacement that cut the mustard?
 

Hobbes

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The main flaw in the "replace the Dakota" plan was cost: Used Dakotas were very cheap by then because they'd been built in such large numbers for the war, then became surplus to requirement. No new build was going to compete with them on cost.

But there were aircraft built for the same role that served admirably. The F-27 is the first that comes to my mind.
 

uk 75

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The main flaw in the "replace the Dakota" plan was cost: Used Dakotas were very cheap by then because they'd been built in such large numbers for the war, then became surplus to requirement. No new build was going to compete with them on cost.

But there were aircraft built for the same role that served admirably. The F-27 is the first that comes to my mind.
I agree that of the twin prop replacements the F27 more than the British 748 and Herald was the closest in being found all over the world. I flew in a Sudan Airways one way back in 1983.
The appeal of the DC3 seems to be more than cost, as so many ways have been found to keep them flying.
I wonder if any paper or unbuilt designs exist that might have had the same magic.
 

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Re the DC 3. It was one of the first monoque commercial aircraft constructed, and the engineers did not have a real hang of it. With the hindsight of experience, it was overbuilt. You can't wear them out. You could say that the Boeing 737 was the DC-3 replacement. The generic airliner that pretty much every airline has.
 

Hood

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I can't help feeling that the 'Dakota Replacement' was a rather vague aim and probably more of a marketing ploy to get airlines to part with cash for new airframes.
The various contenders for this market varied in size, capacity and short-field performance. It wasn't really possible to provide a like-for-like replacement with the superior powerplant technology and different market conditions of the 1950s. A 1930s airliner soon became payload restrictive for major airlines as passenger numbers soared and routes opened up further afield and for rough and ready combi-passenger/cargo operations in the wilds of Latin America, Asia and Africa the DC-3 was rugged and you could get spares easily or do your own metal-bashing if you needed to and less reliance on ground equipment.

To some extent the Viscount would count, it replaced a lot of Daks and itself served for 40 years, a few Avro 748s remain today, both being reliant on the second-hand market for their longevity.
Really the airlines of the 1950s wanted economical load-carriers with turboprops to cut route times (i.e. packing in more routes flown per day) and fuel economy and soon jumped to jets.
The small operators relying on ad hoc charters or working in small markets wanted dependable and cheap. While they could get Daks they did. They couldn't afford new 748s, Electras or Vanguards but when those types ended up on the commercial market at lower prices they served that market. When tend to get blinded by sales of white tails but really the most successful aircraft are those that go through successive owners because they are so good. Which is why the A380 was a flop, there was no used market at all.

Lockheed always failed to make much civil success of the C-130, even smaller twin-engined versions never got off the drawing board. I wonder if they hadn't brought up a load of ex-USAF C-130Es whether they might not have made a killing on the used market?
 

DWG

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The 1950s and 1960s produced many attempts in East and West to design an aeroplane to replace the Douglas DC3 and C47 Dakota.
None that flew seemed to fill the gap, and many Daks flew on. Or do you think there was a built or unbuilt Dak replacement that cut the mustard?
It struck me a while ago that the obvious British Dakota replacement may be a pre-war design - the De Havilland Flamingo. It's about 75% of a Dakota in size and capability, but re-engining it with the Twin Wasp and giving it a fuselage stretch might have been interesting. It's a pity the order for 40 Hertfordshires (Flamingos in camo) was cancelled to allow DH to concentrate on the Tiger Moth.

I don't think it could have become a Dakota replacement post-war, but I think the opportunity to develop it into a Dakota competitor pre-War might have been interesting.
 
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Richard N

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The De Havilland Canada Beaver, Otter, and Twin Otter may be thought of as DC-3 replacements. They continue to fly passengers and cargo long after their original production runs ended. Like the DC-3's turbo conversion to the Basler BT-67, the Turbo-Beaver and Turbo-Otter use the same Canadian developed and manufactured Pratt and Whitney PT-6 turbine and airframe upgrades to increase their performance and capabilities.

The type certificates of all DHC aircraft have been acquired by Viking Air ( https://www.vikingair.com/viking-aircraft#:~:text=Viking Air Ltd. is the,Havilland Aircraft of Canada Company.). They make new build Twin Otters along with supporting all of the DHC aircraft still flying.
 

Hood

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The 1950s and 1960s produced many attempts in East and West to design an aeroplane to replace the Douglas DC3 and C47 Dakota.
None that flew seemed to fill the gap, and many Daks flew on. Or do you think there was a built or unbuilt Dak replacement that cut the mustard?
It struck me a while ago that the obvious British Dakota replacement may be a pre-war design - the De Havilland Flamingo. It's about 75% of a Dakota in size and capability, but re-engining it with the Twin Wasp and giving it a fuselage stretch might have been interesting. It's a pity the order for 40 Hertfordshires (Flamingos in camo) was cancelled to allow DH to concentrate on the Tiger Moth.

I don't think it could have become a Dakota replacement post-war, but I think the opportunity to develop it into a Dakota competitor pre-War might have been interesting.

DH's Ron Bishop was ahead of you, he wanted to tweak the Flamingo to match the DC-3 and in August 1943 sketched up the Flamingo Mk.II (possibly numbered DH.97).
- new single tail (Mosquito style)
- 950hp Perseus XA engines in new, cleaner design nacelles for 13mph increase in cruising speed (254mph max)
- 2ft longer rear fuselage but internally the cabin was 2ft 10in longer and the luggage compartment 1ft longer
- a large loading hatch big enough to get a piston engine through
- stronger structure for 19,500lb AUW (that was an increase of 1,900lb)
- lengthened nose to give the radio operator's compartment 6in more room
- Exactor engine controls replaced with cables
- a modern high-pressure hydraulic system
- redesigned ailerons
- range would be 1,564 miles (1,780 at most economical cruising speed)

It was killed off by a few things; DH focused on war programmes, Perseus XA never entered production and Spec 26/43 for Brabazon Type 5B soon appeared and which asked for a more advanced aircraft.
Its possible Arthur Hagg at Airspeed was influenced by the Flamingo Mk.II when he drew up the Ambassador in 1944, but there is no direct evidence of that.

There was a good article on the Flamingo Mk.II in Air Enthusiast, Nov/Dec 2005
 

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