U-3A “Blue Canoe”

Serial Number: 82126

Popularly known in the U.S. Air Force as the “Blue Canoe,” the U-3 is the military version of the Cessna 310 twin-engine transport. The prototype made its first flight on Jan. 3, 1953, and production for the civilian market began in 1954. In 1957 the USAF selected the aircraft for service as a light administrative liaison, cargo and utility transport. The Air Force eventually bought 160 “off-the-shelf” under the original designation L-27A, later changed to U-3A. Thirty-five more were delivered in 1960-1961 as U-3Bs — all weather versions with more powerful engines, additional cabin windows, a longer nose and a swept vertical fin.

  • Manufacturer: Cessna
  • First Flight: 3 January 1953
  • Retired:
Specifications
  • Crew: 1 pilot
  • Payload: 4 passengers
  • Length: 27 ft
  • Wingspan: 36 ft 11 in
  • Height: 10 ft 8 in
  • Empty Weight: 3,347 lbs
  • Loaded Weight: 5,500 lbs
  • Powerplant: 2x Continental O-470-B
  • Maximum Speed: 238 mph
  • Cruise Speed: 205 mph
  • Range: 850 mi
  • Service Ceiling: 22,000 ft
Assignment History

The assignment history for the Air Mobility Command Museum's U-3A “Blue Canoe”, serial number 82126:

Date Location
16 Jul 1958 Manufactured by Cessna Aircraft, Wichita, KS and delivered to USAF
Jul 1958 to 1100th Air Base Wing (USAF Headquarters Command), Bolling AFB, Washington D.C. (to U-3A)
Aug 1959 to 4501st Support Squadron (Tactical Air Command), James Connally AFB, TX
Sep 1960 to 4510th Combat Crew Training Wing (TAC), Luke AFB, AZ
Sep 1968 to Military Aircraft Storage and Disposition Center, Davis-Monthan AFB, AZ
Jul 1969 to 111th Tactical Air Support Group (Air National Guard), NAS Willow Grove, PA
Apr 1971 to 110th Tactical Air Support Group (ANG), Kellogg Field, MI
Sep 1972 Dropped from inventory and transferred to another agency

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