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.
| ENGINE||4 x P+W R-4360-63, 2795kW|
| Take-off weight||84000 kg||185189 lb|
| Wingspan||53.1 m||174 ft 3 in|
| Length||39.8 m||131 ft 7 in|
| Height||14.7 m||48 ft 3 in|
| Wing area||233.0 m2||2507.99 sq ft|
| Cruise speed||520 km/h||323 mph|
| Ceiling||6100 m||20000 ft|
| Range w/max.fuel||6500 km||4039 miles|
| Range w/max.payload||1970 km||1224 miles|
|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 firstname.lastname@example.org 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 email@example.com I
would really appreciate the info.
|David Scarelli, 06.01.2010|
What is the fuel capacity of the C-124? If the carbon expelled from the a/c is considerable less than that which can be sequestered from the atmosphere and stored on the A/C cargo capacity, It may be used to captur greenhouse gasses. If you know what the fuel capcity of the C-124 is please pass the informstion through the above E-mail. Thanks
|Bill Schwehm, 06.01.2010|
I started my Air force career as a 2nd Lt co-pilot with the 8th TCS. I was assigned to AC 51-090 & after two yrs. I was the AC of 090. I flew the C-124 with the 4th-6th & 8th Sqdns before going to the C-141. During my C-124 time I logged over 10,000 hrs. in Old Shaky. A great airplane and a pleasure to fly.
|Bob Cummins, 05.01.2010|
I was a scanner/flight mechanic at Robins AFB, GA with 7th LSS from Nov 1958 to Jul 1960. 2 week missions to Europe and 3 weeks to Far East. Old Shakey was slow but interesting. Had about 800 hours and it is possible to crawl many feet outboard of #1 and #4 engines. Changed or padded alternators or generators in flight. Ended up career in B-52s as tail gunner with 120 combat missions over 'nam. Last flight assignment was back at Robins AFB with 19th Bomb Wing.
|roger barao, 31.12.2009|
anybody out there stationed at hickam afb from 1967 to 69
with the 61st oms? would like to hook-up with my old surfing and flightline buddies. I'm the guy that built the '57 panhead in my barrack room.
|AL TOWNSEND, 18.12.2009|
Radio operator in 1952 at Tachikawa Japan in the 6th TCS restationed to Donaldson AFB in SC August 1954 to Nov 1955 again as a Radio operator...love the old bird (C-124)..flew all over the world love to hear from any of the guys in the 6th TCS at Tachi....al
I just discovered this site! I am a card-carrying C-124 fan! I spent 3 years in the 1950's as a co-pilot in the 1st Strategic Support Squadron at Biggs AFB, El Paso TX. Loved every minute. Flew missions in support of SAC bomber deployments all over the world, UK, North Africa, the Pacific, the north country. Some of them were long trips, too. El Paso direct Bermuda. El Paso direct Honolulu. Many others. And all without autopilot! (There was a chronic problem with the AP manual disconnect, so the Air Force in all its wisdom disabled the system completely.) We never knew where we would end up, so I routinely carried both a parka and swim trunks. Also, many of us carried our motor scooters on board, if room permitted. Favorite trip? Kwajalein. Or Casablanca. Or Guam. ( Not Thule, for sure, or Alaska. ) Engine problems? Constantly. Much 3-engine time. One short two-engine-out situation (on the same side!) But I loved the airplane, for all its faults. Any readers of this who were in the 1st SS in the 50's, leave a comment.
|Bud Winnett, 29.11.2009|
My first meeting with Ole Shacky was 1956 at Hickam. Was with the Assigned Aircraft section of Flightline Maint. Was pull shortly after arrival and did not wotk on them til I was sent to McChord. Must sasy tho, I flew a lot on them and truly did like them. A bit noisy but always enjoyed thge trip.
|bill kepner, 20.11.2009|
Sitting next to another person in flight you could shout as loud as possible in his ear and he wouldn't hear, but after a few hours you could actually converse! Amazing adjustment.
At Kano Nigeria the mechcanics from a British Beverly transport came aboard on the ramp one night. We started the APU and served C rations, they brought the scotch. The Brits were amazed that each C124 had a built in Oscilliscope Engine Anylizer while they had only one for the whole base. When properly full of their scotch I opened the hatch over the flight deck, climbed out and enjoyed the desert air on top.
The C124's engines started with a deep cough out of that 6 inch (?)diameter exhaust collector ring - a wonderful sound I'll never forget. The fire extinguisher I needed for standing fire guard at engine start was always a long way away on the ramp, or so it seemed. Also memorable was the loud and mournful squeal of their brakes. Sounded like a dinosaur herd.
Anybody remember the special type of cargo taken out of Viet Nam on McChord AFB 124's from 1961-1964+.
|Jan Ardrey Bruce, 22.10.2009|
My father was a flight engineer on C-124s in the Reserves at Carswell in Fort Worth from about 65-74. He dearly loved his time on Ole Shakey and the people he flew with. Reading these stories brings back many precious memories that he loved to share with us.
Do you have any comments about this aircraft ?