Douglas C-124 Globemaster II
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Douglas C-124 Globemaster II

There was little doubt of the load-carrying capability of the C-74 and when, in late 1947, the newly-formed US Air Force decided it needed a heavy strategic cargo transport, discussions between the.USAF and Douglas resulted in development of the C-124 Globemaster II, based on the C-74.

In fact, the prototype YC-124 was basically the fifth C-74 provided with a new, deeper fuselage and strengthened landing gear. Powered by 2610kW R-4360-49 radial engines, it was flown for the first time on 27 November 1949. The type entered production as the C-124A, of which 204 were built, the first of them entering service with the USAF in May 1950. The next, and final, production version was the C-124C, with more-powerful R-4360 engines, weather radar in a distinctive nose radome and, equally useful recognition points, wingtip fairings housing combustion heaters to de-ice the wing and tailplane leading edges and to heat the cabin. C-124C production totalled 243, the last machine being delivered during May 1955.

The fuselage of the Globemaster II had clamshell nose loading doors with an associated built-in loading ramp, an electric hoist amidships which was a carry-over from the C-74, and two overhead cranes (each with a capacity of 7257kg which could traverse the entire length of the 23.47m-long cargo hold. The flight deck, accommodating a crew of five, was mounted high in the nose, over the clamshell doors. When used in a transport role (with two decks installed), the Globemaster II could carry a maximum of 200 fully-equipped troops, or 123 stretcher cases plus 45 ambulatory patients and 15 medical attendants.

Serving with the USAF's Air Materiel Command, Far Eastern Air Force, Military Air Transport Service, Strategic Air Command and Tactical Air Command, and used in conjunction with Douglas C-133s, the Globemaster Us remained in service until replaced by the Lockheed C-5A Galaxy during 1970. When the Globemaster Is ended their useful, service life; some were acquired by civil cargo operators.

Douglas C-124 Globemaster II

 ENGINE4 x P+W R-4360-63, 2795kW
    Take-off weight84000 kg185189 lb
    Wingspan53.1 m174 ft 3 in
    Length39.8 m131 ft 7 in
    Height14.7 m48 ft 3 in
    Wing area233.0 m22507.99 sq ft
    Cruise speed520 km/h323 mph
    Ceiling6100 m20000 ft
    Range w/max.fuel6500 km4039 miles
    Range w/max.payload1970 km1224 miles

Comments1-20 21-40 41-60 61-80 81-100 101-120 121-140 141-160 161-180 181-200 201-220 221-240 241-260 261-280 281-300 301-320 321-340 341-360
JACK, 09.03.2010

Hey Shakey fans . . . does anyone know where I can get a color photo of the C-124 in flight, suitable for framing? The sort of thing that Douglas Aircraft might have put out as Public Relations stuff? Ideally around 16" x 20". Help! I need it for an 80th birthday gift for an aircraft commander I flew with in the fifties.

Don Wilkerson, 28.02.2010

Worked on the C-124 at McChord from 67 to 70 in OMS. Transitioned into the C-141 when Shakey was retired. I liked working on the C-124 the best. Made many trips as a flight mech and was a maintenance team chief. Myself and one of my guys were changing an alternator on # 4 engine. He was in the accessory section and I has squeezed up thru the access door. I got stuck and he could not get out because I was stuck in the door. They sent the medics and fire trucks out and had to remove a fuel line that was caught in my rib cage. I got a lot of ribbing over that. Went TDY to Alaska supporting Army cold weather exercise and winching M-60 Tanks up into the cargo bay and transporting them. We could carry anything. Did not have time to do stack checks after every flight. Got back to McChord and opened the cowling and it rained broken stacks. Flew thru the Oregon passes going home one time with one engine out. Could look up and see the tops of the mountains above us as we could not get enough altitude to fly over them on 3 engines. Lots of good memories of old Shakey.

Gene Van Houten, 21.02.2010

I was a flight engineer in the 2nd Strategic Support Sqdn at Walker AFB, NM when they got the first C-124A 49-235. I went to the 3rd SSS at Hunter AFB, GA in Dec 50 and stayed with the sqdn until it was deactivated in Jun 61. In late 1952, the sqdn moved to Barksdale. I ended up with about 6000 hours and generally enjoyed most of the trips. A note to David Scarelli, the fuel capacity of the "A" models was 11,100 gallons of 115/145 octane fuel but could use 100/130 in an emergency with some loss of power. In some previous messages, some fellows mentioned having a lot of 3 engine time. I had some but I never considered it to be excessive. As a bit of info, 49-258 (the plane at AMC Museum-Dover) made a flight out of Hunter that lasted 30 hours and 5 minutes non stop. All 4 engines had reached close to 1200 hours and the flight was made to roll over 1200 hours, then the engines required changing. Only time I ever heard of a plane with all 4 original engines going the limit. The "A" model engines were R-4360-20W and I think the "C" models were -63s. I've seen some info on other sites that say the "A"s were converted to "C"s but none were although the "A"s were fitted with the later model engines with the squared off props. Some late "A"s had wing tip heaters but they reduced about 5 knots of cruise speed at a given power setting. In closing, would enjoy any emails from interested folks.

Roy J. Rogge, 13.02.2010

After completing tech school at Sheppard AFB in May 1959 I was assigned to Charleston AFB, SC to work on Connies ( 1608 Flt Ln. Maint.. Sq.). In Dec. 1959 I was transferred to the Dover AFB, DE, to maintain 124s (1607 Flt. Ln. Maint. Sq.). TDYs to Ft. Campbell, KY (Screaming Eagles); Ft. Miles DE.; Chateauroux, France; Leopoldville, Congo (with stopovers at Wheelus AFB, Libya); Thule Greenland (re-supply the DEW line radar sites); Niame, Niger; Ft. Leonard Wood, MO; Florence, SC. Released from active duty Sept. 1962. Got a model of Old Shakey above my computer.

Charles A Moore-Ret USAF, 13.02.2010

I was a Loadmaster on the 'A' model (which is not mentioned)during the Berlin & Cuban Crisis in 61 & 62. Assigned to the 78th TCS at Barksdale AFB. Was very eventful time in my young Airman career.I finished college in 1964 and earned a commission through OTS. I was a 33150 Nuke Fuzing for the years before and we were crashed coursed into the Loadmaster training. Many fond memories in a bird that time forgot; no small models ever made-only custom made ones. Was the AFs work horse for years and probably carried out more "special" missions then any other bird of its time.Stories are many about old 'Shakey' the Flying Cloud'.

John McCrory, 12.02.2010

I was also in Chateaurox in the early 60's. Remember the Frog Pond well! We were mechanics on old shaky on TDY out of Dover. I went all over Africa as a flight mechanic. My specialty at the end of my 4 years was running up engines and analyzing problems vis the Sperryscope as well as other trouble-shooting methods.

FRAN REIDINGER, 10.02.2010


John Drew, 08.02.2010

WINGFLAPS COWLFLAPS SET FOR TAKEOFF, CABIN SECURE. Just can't forget those words, Hill AFB 1964-65 7 day Tachi turn around that lasted 21 days, the good old days

Doc, 06.02.2010

"This will be a standard 'wet' takeoff...we'll 'GO' at 111 knots. Any malfunction after 111 knots will be treated as an inflight emergency...."Manifold..35....Max power!

Bill Northcutt, 04.02.2010

Shakey will get you there and back, but you gonna loose a stack. I was a load master in the reserves at Tinker AFB logged about 4000 hours. Ever trip was a challenge. Several trips to SEA carrying B-52 parts.

Max T. Hansen, 01.02.2010

Worked on these from 1958 to 1964 at both Donaldson AFB & Hunter AFB with TDY's all over the place .Finally a plane big enough for me to get around in ( over 6ft 3in tall ).Only one I ever worked on that I figured had a basement(P & Q compartments).The Davis wing didn't look big enough but when I changed fuel probes in the #6 or 7 tanks I would stand on the bottom of the tank & I would be eye level with the top of the wing .Went out to # 4 engine ONE time in flight as the engineer wanted me to fix the tachometer for him . Quite a ride!Told him to look out the window & see if the prop was turning.Fond memories of a lot of good times & buddies.

John Champion, 31.01.2010

Grew up a few blocks from the west gate at Barksdale, my friends were Air Force brats, and we hung out at the base pool during the summer and never missed a Holiday In Dixie. My first job was at the PX on base. Loved the piston engine planes, especially the C-124s with the crew member sitting on top and those brakes. Miss those days and the planes. Thanks for all your comments, brings back some wonderful memories.

Mac McCommons, 29.01.2010

Was a C-124A/C Loadmaster assigned 32nd SQ at McChord AFB, WA, 3rd SQ at Brookley, AFB, AL/Charleston AFB, SC & 85th SQ Travis AFB, CA. Loved the aircraft--but, compare to today's airlift birds--what a Bear to load-- no 463L plts, floor load all eq, Johnson Bars (people killers) to move boxes within the aircraft, installing the 90+ lbs tailstand prior to loading/unloading. Loadmaster were alerted at all times-- 6 hrs prior to departure even if the load consisted of less than 500Lbs. What really sticks in my mind were the flight crews (Pilots, Nav's. Flight Engineers) who were mostly old World War II vets, what characters they were, the old FE's taught this young man lots of "way to do all things" some good, some not so good. Learned lots from Flight Engineers about World War II down in "P" Comp't during the Crawlway checks. Recall in 1960, flew as C-124 LM out of Chateauroux, France to support the Congo uprising. When we rtn to Chad after each msn completion, a Flight Surgeon with whiskey/shot glasses would meet on our Crew Bus & pour each of us a shot of booze. Thinking this was SOP, maybe this is why I stayed in the USAF for 30 yrs. In the early to mid 70's I was the 21AF Chief C-124/C-141 stan/eval LM administering evals to the Reserve/Guard C-124 Loadmasters. Will always remember "Old Shakey" and the great people who flew on her----Take care!!

Herb Greathouse, 25.01.2010

I was assigned to the 62nd FMS Instrument Shop, McChord AFB 1962/65. I think I worked on every Ol' Shakey the Air Force had during those years. Us maintenance guys went TDY alot, north to Alaska, out in the pacific, and the mid-west mostly. We worked long hours, in good weather or bad. If there were no instrument system write-ups I'd be helping any other maintenance guy who needed a hand. There are over a hundred indicators on the engineers panel alone, then you've move up front to the pilot and co-pilot's panels, oh yes these's the navigator too. Other stuff, each engine has 28 cylinders, 7 magnetos, 56 spark plugs, we did what ever it took to keep it flying. We did have our fun trips, one was hauling the young Air Force Cadets out of then Loury AFB in Denver. On hot summer days we always had at least one or two runway aborts. I am sure there are some who will read this an say to themselves, yep fun times.

Phil Barber, 23.01.2010

When I was first assigned to Travis in the 85th ATS, Dick Rutan was an Instructor Nav and we flew several missions together. A C-133 went in off Wake and the search was coordinated out of Hickam. Dick Rutan and I were navs on one of the search planes and he instructed me to go back and brief the Army scanners on the proper donning and use of the flotation gear. I did and just as I was concluding the briefing...I said, "don't worry about this business anyway, these ole shakey's are the most reliable aircraft in the inventory." Just then as we were letting down to 500 feet to search for the C-133 wreckage and survivors, the number 3 engine caught fire and the search mission for us in our sector was aborted and we returned to Hickam with some pale Army troops. Dick Rutan went on to pilot training flew fighters and eventually flew around the world non-stop with Jenna Yager in an aircraft he and his brother designed and built.

Phil Barber, 23.01.2010

I flew "ole shakey" as a nav from Oct 63 til Jan 65 in the 85th ATS at Travis AFB, CA. I became the 22AF Disaster Preparedness Officer in Jan 65 and was transferred to Yokota AB, Japan in Jun 66. Got off AD but stayed in the Reserves and flew the airplane with the 917th MAW at Barksdale AFB then with the OKANG at Tulsa and OK City. I went to C-141's at CHS and C-5's at Dover. I loved "ole shakey." We crew rested everywhere we landed because we were so slow and low...every mission took a day. Spent many happy times out on the line.

Ed barry, 21.01.2010

I flew as navigator for about 3600 hours in the C-124 during the Vietnam War while in the Reserve at Barksdale. It was a real challenge to navigate. We used all the basic navigation skills to navigate. I do not recall ever having mechanical problems that caused a delay. We had a great group of people and a great airplane!

Bill Kepner, 20.01.2010

My earlier post neglected to say I was at Dover AFB Delaware from March 1958 to Aug. 1961. I worked in 1607th Field Maintenance Sqd. engine build up shop, with tdys in propeller shop; ground power; base swimming pool and rec. area at Fort Miles DE; and Ground Safety Office. I went TDY to Chateauroux France in '61 for the UN Congo Operation,with rides in Old Shakey across the Med., the Sahara, Nigeria; also to Kartoum Sudan, Aden, India, Leopoldville. Transported UN troops from India, Nigeria. That was a lot of hours in the air! Never had an engine failure. It was a great experience for me. I remember the Frog Pond Bar in Chateaurox expecially, the omolets for breakfast at Deols, and the great week in Paris when the orderly room forgot to send me back to Delaware.

John J. Doyle, 10.01.2010

I was assigned to 1503rd FMS at Tachikawa 1963-65.
I was on an engine conditioning team that flew all over SE Asia repairing C-124 engines. While flying out of Saigon we lost both lft wing engines on take off and the A/C did a 180 degree turn on the dead wing and landed the same direction that we took off from. He was a Lt.Col. and very experienced. When we opened the clam shell doors he reached into his bag and pulled out a bottle of Jack Daniela and we all shared a pull on the bottle right on the flight line.
Another flight we were flying a red x back to Tachi (crew only, no cargo) and the crew chief asked me to crawl out the wing tunnel and listen for a spar grinding, sure enough I could hear that grinding and got the hell out of
the tunnel. I worked on R-4360's in SAC on KC97's and when they were replaced by KC135's I was assigned to MATS on the 124. Spent most of my time 12 on 12 off, 6 days a week or TDY in some of the most exotic places on earth.
We were moved to Goose Bay Labrador during the Cuban missile crisis to refuel EB47's flying into Russia to jam their radar. I loved the Air Force and the people I served with.

Robert (Bob) Bren, 09.01.2010

Douglas C-124 Globemaster II - visitors' comments Robert Bren, e-mail I was a radio/radar type on C-124's from

1962 to 1965. Love old shaky. Am wondering if anyone has a link to a web page or can personally verify that cargo and troop were transported

to vietnam using c-124's from Hunter afb or Donaldson afb. My home phone is 850 492 5759 or other e-mail is I

would really appreciate the info.

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