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Lockheed L-300

Triton

Donald McKelvy
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Photograph of Lockheed L-300, a civilian version of the Lockheed C-141 Starlifter.

This is the Lockheed Model 300 (L-300), the only civil-registered C-141 StarLifter transport to be be built. A number of air cargo operators -- notably Flying Tiger Lines -- placed orders for the L-300, but all of the contracts were eventually cancelled. This aircraft, registered N4141A, was later transferred to NASA and was modified to become the Kuiper Airborne Observatory at was based at Moffett Field, California. The aircraft was fitted with a thirty-six inch infrared telescope.
Source: http://www.codeonemagazine.com/article.html?item_id=34
 

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LowObservable

CLEARANCE: Top Secret
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Interesting - I just read a 1970s book, "The C-5 Scandal" by Berkeley Rice, in which the author reports that Lockheed took on the C-141 in the expectation that they would sell a ton of L-300s to airlines with the aid of Civil Reserve Air Fleet funds. Sadly, nobody told Douglas about this, and the DC-8-63F/CF subsequently strangled the L-300 in its crib.
 

Pioneer

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I found the following information/statement from another website very interesting:

"Interestingly as early as 1964 civilian operators were telling Lockheed that the Starlifter's fuselage was too short, that it would bulk-out at around 60,000lb with normal freight densities ( wasting 35,000lb of payload capability )*. So they had no real interest in the original model, to the disappointment of the USAF which was to receive a royalty on each civilian sale!

One of the requirements of the USAF contract was that the Starlifter had to be FAA-certificated to Cat 3B autoland, the same as the Short Belfast."

(Source: AS.12, 2018. Reply #7 https://www.whatifmodellers.com/index.php?topic=21561.0)

I've requested AS.12 for his spice, awaiting a reply.

Regards
Pioneer
 
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