C-45G Expeditor

Serial Number: 51-11795

This Expeditor was converted from an AT-11 Bombardier Trainer by Beech in 1953. After serving at various air force bases from 1953 to 1958, it was dropped from the USAF inventory. Acquired by the CIA airline, Air America, in 1960, it received a civilian registration of N-7950C.

The aircraft operated throughout Southeast Asia from 1960-1975. Early operations included humanitarian airlift in Laos and hauling supplies and refugees.

In 1964 it moved to Saigon and transported agents and supplies to remote airfields. After several accidents during this period, including an in-flight collision, it was used temporarily for spare parts in Bangkok, Thailand. Its final assignment was Tainan, Taiwan, and was then donated to the U.S. Marine Corps Air/Ground Museum at Quantico, Virginia.

After being restored at the Air Mobility Command Museum, ownership of the aircraft was transferred to the USAF Heritage Program for display at the AMC Museum in May 2018.

Mission

The U.S. Army Air Corps first ordered this type of aircraft in 1940 under the designation C-45, for use as a staff transport. These aircraft were re-designated UC-45s in 1943. Other variants included the AT-7 Navigator, introduced in 1941 for navigator training. This had a dorsal astrodome and positions for three trainees. Some 577 of these were built. The AT-11 Kansan, a bombing/gunnery trainer, was introduced in 1941. Production of the AT-11 totaled 1,582 and included 36 examples completed as the AT-11A navigation trainer. Another Model 18 variant was the F-2 photo-reconnaissance model, of which 69 examples were acquired. The U.S. Navy and Marine Corps also procured the Model 18, with a total of over 1,500 examples. The JRB-1 was the equivalent of the F-2, the JRB-2 was a transport, and the JRB-3 and -4 were the equivalent of the UC-45. The SNB-1, -2, & -3 were the equivalents of the AT-11, -7, and -7C, respectively. The F-2 was yet another variant of the Model 18 that was built to carry two to four aerial cameras and used for reconnaissance and aerial mapping. Only about 70 of the F-2 models were built. Other variants of the Model 18 included an air ambulance and an electronics countermeasure trainer. The Air Corps ordered 11 Beech Model B18s aircraft in late 1939 and designated them C-45s.

The planes were essentially identical to the civilian version of the aircraft and used by the Army for light transport, staff, and liaison missions. The plane was powered by two Pratt & Whitney Wasp Junior radials and cruised at 211 miles per hour carrying a maximum of six passengers and crew. The Air Corps ordered more than 1300 C-45s with most produced as the C-45F. During the early 1950s, Beech completely rebuilt 900 C-45s for the Air Force. They received new serial numbers and were designated C-45Gs and C-45Hs, remaining in service until 1963 for administrative and light cargo duties.

Gallery

  • Manufacturer: Beechcraft Corporation
  • First Flight: 15 January 1937
  • Retired: 1963
Specifications
  • Crew: 2 pilots
  • Payload: 6 passengers
  • Length: 35 ft
  • Wingspan: 47 ft 8 in
  • Height: 9 ft 8 in
  • Empty Weight: 6,175 lbs
  • Loaded Weight: 7,500 lbs
  • Powerplant: 2x Pratt & Whitney R-985-AN1 Wasp Junior
  • Maximum Speed: 225 mph
  • Cruise Speed: 175 mph
  • Range: 1,200 mi
  • Service Ceiling: 26,000 ft
Assignment History

The assignment history for the Air Mobility Command Museum's C-45G Expeditor, serial number 51-11795:

Date Location
4 Mar 1943 This aircraft was first manufactured as an AT-11 Kansan (s/n 42-37174) by Beech Aircraft, Wichita, Kansas, and delivered to the United States Army Air Force (USAAF)
Mar 1943 To Childress Field, Texas
May 1944 to 2512th Base Unit, Childress Field, Texas
Dec 1944 to 4196th Base Unit, Victory Field, Texas
Jun 1948 to San Bernardino Air Material Area for storage
Jun 1952 Dropped from the USAF inventory by authorized reclamation
19 May 1953 Rebuilt as a C-45G Expeditor with new serial number 51-11795 at Beech Aircraft, Wichita, Kansas, and delivered to the United States Air Force (USAF)
May 1953 to 2750th Air Base Wing (Air Materiel Command), Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio
Jun 1953 to Civil Air Patrol, Indianapolis, Indiana
21 Aug 1953 to 2750th Air Base Wing (Air Materiel Command), Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio
31 Aug 1953 to Civil Air Patrol, Indianapolis, Indiana
Nov 1953 to 2750th Air Base Wing (Air Materiel Command), Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio
Dec 1953 to Civil Air Patrol, Indianapolis, Indiana
15 Feb 1954 to 2750th Air Base Wing (Air Materiel Command), Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio
26 Feb 1954 to Civil Air Patrol, Indianapolis, Indiana
27 Feb 1954 to 1100th Operations Group (Air Force Headquarters Command), Bolling AFB, District of Columbia
Aug 1956 to 359th Combat Crew Training Wing (Air Training Command), Nellis AFB, Nevada
Sep 1956 to 2750th Air Base Wing (Air Materiel Wing), Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio
Sep 1956 to 1100th Operations Group (Air Force Headquarters Command), Bolling AFB, District of Columbia
12 Feb 1957 to 1st Maintenance and Supply Group (Air Defense Command), Selfridge AFB, Michigan
19 Feb 1957 to 1100th Operations Group (Air Force Headquarters Command), Bolling AFB, District of Columbia
Jun 1957 to 1100th Maintenance and Supply (Air Force Headquarters Command), Bolling AFB, District of Columbia
Aug 1957 to Davis-Monthan AFB, Arizona, for storage
Apr 1958 Dropped from USAF inventory for sale
Given Beech 18 civilian registration N7950C; registered to aircraft designer and test pilot Vance Breese
29 Aug 1960 Registration changed to Air America
20 Jul 1960 Landing accident at Tainan, Taiwan; struck by cable dangling from jet passing overhead
1960-1961 Humanitarian operations in Laos; transporting foodstuffs and medicine, evacuation refugees
20 May 1963 Mid-air collision with unknown object over Laos
1963 Converted to 'Ten-Two' configuration
1964 Based at Saigon, South Vietnam
28 March 1965 Landing accident, Saigon, South Vietnam
15 Jun 1965 Landing accident, Hue Phu Bai, South Vietnam (V-06)
28 July 1965 Landing accident, Tay Ninh, South Vietnam (V-151)
12 Nov 1968 Taxiing accident, Saigon, South Vietnam
30 Jun 1971 Used for spares, Bangkok Thailand
Late 1974 Based at Tainan, Taiwan
14 Oct 1975 Donated to U.S. Marine Corp Museum at Quantico, Virginia
Apr 1989 On long-term loan to Air Mobility Command Museum (then Dover AFB Museum), Dover AFB, Delaware
23 May 2018 Ownership transferred to the USAF Heritage Program for display at the AMC Museum

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