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Lockheed Super Constellation

47 Fabulous Photos of the Lockheed Super Constellation



In 1950-1951, the standard Lockheed Constellation was lengthened into the Super Constellation by adding 18 feet 4 inches split into two equal sections inserted before and aft of the wings. Also, the oval windows on the original Connie were replaced with square windows on the Super Constellation, and the first factory new Lockheed Super Constellation flew on April 4, 1951.

The modifications brought a 40% increase in payload, with passenger capacity increased up to 92. Eastern Airlines and TWA were the first customers to order Super Constellations in April, 1950, and the type entered service with the airlines in December, 1951.

Within a year or two the Wright Turbo-Compound engine became available which offered a further increase in the MTOW of the Lockheed Super Constellation, and the new version of the Connie was called the L-1049C. Large numbers of the new and improved Lockheed Super Constellation were sold to the US Air Force and Navy, and many international airlines of the day ordered the new airliner as their flagship aircraft. Most of the US majors ordered the new Connies, as did such well respected international carriers as Trans Canada Air Lines, KLM, Air France, AVIANCA, REAL, TAP Portugal, and Lufthansa to name just a few.

Other versions of the Lockeed Super Constellation included the L-1049D freighter and the famous L-1049G "Super G" Lockheed Constellation with its trademark wingtip fuel tanks, each of which could carry 600 gallons. Connie pilots would refer to to the full wing tip tanks as "flying with a Ford automobile on each wing tip!"

Rugged, reliable, easily flyable, distinctively styled and naturally graceful, the Lockheed Super Constellation was a stellar performer. The Super Constellation was highly respected by passengers and crew alike for almost 20 years, from the time she first took to the skies in the mid 1940s, until replaced by jets in the mid 1960s. For most aviation fans and people who worked with her, the Locheed Super Constellation is considered as one of the all time great, classic, commercial airliners.

Although 865 Lockheed Constellations of all series were built, by 1967 only 206 were still operational in the US, based on Lockheed and FAA records of the day. Today, only a few Lockheed Super Constellations remain operational. Despair not, as anyone who would like to sample the joys of a pleasure flight on a Lockheed Super Constellation, can do so by becoming a member of the Breitling Super Constellation club. Membership entitles members a chance to join one the Connie's summer flights, which are flown within Switzerland and to other nearby points in Europe during summer months.

The ultimate Super Constellation is the L-1649 Starliner version, which was operated by Lufthansa, Air France, and TWA as prime customers in the late 1950s. Other airlines operated second hand Starliners during the 1960s as Air France, TWA and Lufthansa retired their fleets. To acknowledge their aviation heritage, Lufthansa Technik is currently rebuilding a L-1649 Starliner to like-new condition. The plan is to operate special passenger flights including trans-atlantic flights with the rebuilt Connie at some in the not too distant future. Lufthansa's Starliner Super Constellation rebuild project commenced back in 2013, and ongoing progress is reported on their Lufthansa Starliner website.

Presented below are 47 fabulous photos of the classic Lockheed Super Constellation from our extensive aircraft image database. Which, by the way, are for sale in both digital and print format. If you are looking for 35mm kodachrome slides of the Lockheed Super Constellation click here for huge selection.

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WANTED: Top aviation photographers to join our team.


To see all the Lockheed Constellation photos for sale

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