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Old 03-03-2011, 05:26 AM   #1  
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Default 4 Star operations

I heard from someone that they are out of business. Is it true and when and why did it happen? I was hoping to get a DC-3 job with them one day.
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Old 03-03-2011, 07:12 AM   #2  
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The pilots went on "strike" 2008 but they weren't union to my knowledge. The FAA grounded some of their planes a couple times in 2009. Engine and cargo restraint issues. The Post Office cancelled their mail contract in Nov 09 which did them in. One of their planes had a cockpit fire on taxi out that burned the nose off to the meat hatch door. The company was saying it was repairable - you be the judge.

Photo of Douglas DC-3C N136FS - Aviation Safety Network

I'll be the first to say it, "The front fell off."
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Old 03-03-2011, 08:25 AM   #3  
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My dad has an awesome set of tools, I can fix it!
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Old 03-03-2011, 08:47 AM   #4  
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They could take this opportunity to upgrade to a glass cockpit.
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Old 03-03-2011, 09:38 AM   #5  
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FedEx would make that an MD-3. Probably get a shared type with the -10 and -11 as well!
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Old 03-04-2011, 04:46 AM   #6  
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Quote:
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The pilots went on "strike" 2008 but they weren't union to my knowledge. The FAA grounded some of their planes a couple times in 2009. Engine and cargo restraint issues. The Post Office cancelled their mail contract in Nov 09 which did them in. One of their planes had a cockpit fire on taxi out that burned the nose off to the meat hatch door. The company was saying it was repairable - you be the judge.

Photo of Douglas DC-3C N136FS - Aviation Safety Network

I'll be the first to say it, "The front fell off."
That's a sad sight, would've been better off in a flying museum with people who would actually baby it. I bet that airplane had some interesting history.
The MD-3 sounds like a good idea.
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Old 03-04-2011, 05:12 AM   #7  
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My father is a TV repairman and he's got an awesome set of tools. We can fix that thing.

JJ
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Old 03-04-2011, 09:40 AM   #8  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jsfBoat View Post
That's a sad sight, would've been better off in a flying museum with people who would actually baby it. I bet that airplane had some interesting history.
The MD-3 sounds like a good idea.
Absolutely not!

It is always better that DC-3s are used as the workhorse for which they're designed. Sure, it's good that there are folks preserving and hangaring the Gooneybird, but I'd rather see a beat up 3 being put to work than a pristine example being babyed/kid gloved any day.
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Old 03-04-2011, 09:50 AM   #9  
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Speaking of cargo outfits flying old birds around SJU, is Tolair still around? I use to fly freight in SJU (metro's, no DC-3s unfortunately) and on two separate occasions I witnessed a Tolair convair lose an engine on takeoff. Also had Beech 18 disappear of the coast one night. KC
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Old 03-04-2011, 12:12 PM   #10  
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Don't know about Tolair, Wiki has two entries, one says they're gone and one doesn't. But their web page is gone. One of the Wiki entries says they were bought by Four Star. Someone uploaded some Twin Beech videos to Youtube last summer but no date. Funny thing, one of the videos shows a takeoff and the tailwheel stays down. I got busted one time because the company didn't like working on the bicycle chain and pinned the tailwheel down. But we had Ten One kits and the Fed said you can't pin the tailwheel with a Ten One kit. Nothing happened to me but the company got their hand slapped. I'd think if Tolair was running freight they'd have Ten One planes.

There are enough Threes running loose that if someone can make money working them, more power to them. When it comes down to 20 or 30 left, then maybe save them for museums and airshows. Thirty some years ago when I was flying them for a living we'd pull in someplace and the line guys would say, "I saw one of these in the museum." December 17, 1985, NOVA had a special on the fiftieth anniversary of the DC-3's first flight. I didn't get to see it, I was out flying a Three that night.
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