Lockheed 89 Constitution
1948
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Lockheed 89 Constitution

Although two prototypes of the Lockheed 89 Constitution were built for the US Navy, under the designation XR60-1, no production examples of this large transport aircraft resulted because development of the 4101kW Wright Typhoon turboprop engines intended to power production aircraft was abandoned. As it was, the Constitutions were flown with engines of only 2610kW for test purposes. As military transports, the 57.63m span Constitutions would have carried a crew of 12 and 168 service personnel on two decks.

Comments1-20 21-40
James J. Fry, 27.01.2014

My Uncle, Charles William "Bill" Fry,12/5/15 to 5/4/2001--rank on tombstone is ADC---I remember him telling me about going out in wings to work on engines..He had a duty station at the Lockheed Factory while they were building the second plane and did all of the test flig-hts, etc...I remember going to Allegheny County Airport in Pittsburgh to see him on the plane during the 19 city tour-1950-He loved the duty on that airplane,very professional.

capt. frank sosa, miami,fla., 26.09.2013

Thank you for all comments about R 6 constitution. I need more information for constitution Navy 164, I writing a book. I was the last owner of constitution aircraft.

frank sosa last owner, 12.08.2013

constitution was the real procursort of the big commecial aviation or airlines today if was the constitution abande I will try to save agaim

capt. frank sosa, 04.01.2013

Iwas last owner of constitution navy 164 I try to save i but no was possible to many stupit people in this world was in my way and destroy the the plane. I workingin my book. and keek america free, miami fl.

Dave Paulley, 23.06.2012

I was attached to Air Transport Squadron Five (VR-5) from 1952-1955. I held the rating of Machinest Mate AD-3. We had the two Lockheed R60's in our squadron for two or three of those years. I would fly as second mechanic on them from time to time. Never recorded the hours I flew on them but was substantial. I thought they were a great aircraft and would have been really great had they had the right powerplants but of course they were not available at the time. I paint aviation art, check my web site

Dave Paulley
PO Box 415
Osage, WY 82723

Roger Michael Milnr, 26.03.2012

Sorry, made an error,In my last comment about my dad, Roger Maddy Milner, PO 1, I said he was with vf-1, that could have been vr-1 since he workd on Prop. planes, but, during the war he did work on fighter planes.

Roger Michael Milner, 26.03.2012

Another thing that my Momtold me about Dad, was the planes the Navy bought, as she said, was from boeing, and that, " every time he turned around something was wrong" don't know if it was this planeor some other plane, but, he's squdern,VF-7, was the death of him an some other membrs, there names are unknown or if Mom ever said I forgotten.

Sydney Bingman, 26.03.2012

My mother was part of the history of the Navy R60 from 1947-48 (Mary E. Welch) where Frank Powers interviewed with her in New Hampshire. Sad to day, but there was no mention of the women crew in the book. My dad is wondering why?

John B Doughton CTMC USN Ret, 25.01.2012

My first duty station was at NAF Litchfield Park Ariz . It was the Navys storage facility then and had about 2500 WWII up planes pickled there. We had both both R6's stored there . this was 56/57. Both planes had been runup regularly until just before i got there.Someone had accidently shut off oil pumps during runup and ruined several engines. Had several pictures of interior but over the years lost them . Remember the spiral staircase to the lower deck and the phone switchboard.If i remember correctly top deck had 7 seats across and lower deck was cargo only.Had your hatches to wings so you could go out into the wing to the engines. The instrument panel had a indicator light to come on when you touched down on runway. We had some scenes for a movie taken their in 57. Was "LADY TAKES A FLIER" with Lana Turner and Jeff Chandler. You can see it once in a while on Turner Classic Movies.It has a short shot from the air Showing lots of the planes we had stored their showing (i think also) the two R6's John D

W R Bill Wilkins, 06.12.2011

Was at NAS Sandpoint Seattle in1954 or 5 was very surprised when this huge planed (very short runway) and parked very close to the control tower .I informed the pilot we did not have tow bar I didn't know how we could back him up not to worry he said the next day he cranked up and preceded to back out..I was amazed as I had never heard of revers props


up

Shel Simonovich, 13.11.2011

My correct E-mail address is vmfaw-531@wvisp.com and I apologize for the error.
Due to the small space here, I apparently made some errors so here are my correct comments, at least for this time:
The correct designation is R6O, not R60. That is the letter 'O' not the number zero. Naval aircraft type/model designations used a letter to tell the class or type (fighter, transport, etc) then a number for the model of that class by that manufacturer (FF, F2F, F3F, F4F, F5F, F6F, etc. Note the first one has no number, just as in algebra you don't use the expression 1X but only the X, so this was the sixth transport by Lockheed, not the sixth design). This number was followed a letter for the manufacturer, followed by a number for series variations on the basic design (used like the D in P-51D) and any modifications such as night, photo recon or such (again, letters).
Harry Truman was president from 1945-52 and used a C-54 called the Sacred Cow, as I recall. Ike used a VC-121 Constellation called the Columbine. No president used the R6O/R6V Constitution. After Eisenhower, the executive transport has been known as 'Air Force One' whenever the president is aboard but not otherwise.

Shel Simonovich, 13.11.2011

The correct designation is R6O, not R60. That is the letter 'O' not the number zero. Naval aircraft type designations used a letter to tell the class (fighter, transport, etc) then a number for the series of that class by that manufacturer (FF, F2F, F3F, F4F, F5F, F6F, etc. Note the first one has no number, just as in algebra you don't use the expression 1X but only the X.) so this was the sixth transport by Lockheed, not the sixth design. This number was followed a letter for the manufacturer, followed by a number (used like the D in P-51D) and any modifications (again, letters).
Harry Truman was president from 1945-52 and used a C-54 called the Sacred Cow, as I recall. Ike used a VC-121 Constellation called the Columbine. No president used the R6O/R6V Constitution. After Eisenhower, the executive transport has been known as Air Force One whenever the president is aboard but not otherwise.

FRANK POWERS, 21.04.2011

I wrote the book

Roger Michael Milner, 16.04.2011

Remember seeing a picture of this airplane or one quite similer asm a child, My Dad, First-Class Petty Officer out of Moffent Field in 54?-58was flight engeer, Roger Maddy Milner.

Jay Bauer, 12.02.2011

My father was one of the pilots on this aircraft and flew both of them. He still has his log books and has the flight manual for it. He has all the stories too.

Ben Beekman, 16.01.2011

If I remember correctly, Harry Truman was president in 1948 (some called him "high-tax Harry") and his personal aircraft was the Lockheed Constitution.

Leroy McVay, 12.01.2011

1953, AN on line crew at North Island. One of these came in, stood fire bottle on port wing for start up. Some how got a stack fire on #2. Signaled for a 2 finger run up to suck the fire out. Took care of that problem!

Bob Duff, 29.12.2010

I was in the fueling crew of VR-21 Barbers Point in 1951. I spent a half day on Stbd wing of one of these. I didn't think I'd ever get it fueled.

Don Safer, 18.10.2010

As can be gathered from the "comments" posted here, the Constitutions were indeed operational.
My supervisor for most of my time with GTE Lenkurt, San Carlos California ('68-'83) was Charles (Charlie) Bell, a former air crewman aboard the Constitutions. He told us several stories about them but the only thing that comes to mind is the unreliability of the engines. They would carry a spare engine on it's regular flights to Hawaii and would often do an engine change there.

Gene Richards, 06.10.2010

I rode in the R6O Dec 26, 1950, NAS North Island to NAS Moffett. My seat was right behind the cockpit bulkhead which housed a beautiful scale model of the USS Constitutiion enclosed in a glass case.

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