' Proudly keeping history alive'

Retro .....flying in style!

The small but dedicated Hangar Team, just like in the real world, strive not only to keep the operational fleet in tip top condition but also proudly seek to keep history alive by maintaining a small 'Historic Flight'. Each of these cherished 'oldies' (that's the aircraft not the team), having given of their best, has left the TCA fleet forever. The Historic Flight however allows them, under close supervision, to take to the air again. If you want the older HFG fleet follow the link to the right.

For more recent or just plain good aircraft to fly in 'retro mood' the files below are for you... seriously these are highly recommended.



Click here for the OLD HFG hangars



How to fly in a retro world (complete propliner environment) can be found here:

The Aircraft are here.....




Tradewind Caribbean Airways

(Operated by Historic Flight Group)

PJ-CDG 'Jacmel' C-47R




















Jan Visser -

Douglas C-47R Skytrain V3.12 Beta

No greater accolade for the DC-3 exists than the fact that over six decades after its first flight more than 400 remain in commercial service worldwide. Durability, longevity and profitability are but three of this outstanding aircraft's virtues. <p>Development of the DC-3 traces back to the earlier oneoff Douglas Commercial 1 (DC1) and subsequent DC2 which made their first flights in 1933 and 1934 respectively.

In 1934 American Airlines requested that Douglas develop a larger more capable version of the DC2 for transcontinental US sleeper flights. The resulting DC-3 (or DST - Douglas Sleeper Transport as it then was) flew for the first time on December 17 1935. <p>An almost instant sales success, the DC-3 became the mainstay of the US domestic airline network in the years prior to World War 2. Aside from passenger comfort and appeal, the DC-3 offered that most important of virtues, profitability, with the result that over 400 had been sold to airlines prior to late 1941.

The entry of the United States into WW2 in December 1941 had a profound effect on the fortunes of the already successful DC-3. The US Army Air Force's requirements for transport aircraft were admirably met by the inproduction DC-3, with the result that as the C47 Skytrain it became the standard USAAF transport during the war. More than 10,000 were built for service with US and allied air arms.

After the war many of these aircraft became surplus to requirements and were sold off at bargain prices. The result was that demilitarised C47s became the standard postwar aircraft of almost all the world's airlines and the backbone of the world airline industry well into the 1950s. Its availability and reliability meant it proved extremely popular. Even today hundreds remain in service.

A postwar update of the DC-3, the Super DC-3, involving a stretched airframe and more powerful engines, was commercially unsuccessful. This aircraft first flew in June 1949. A small number were built for the US Navy as the R4D8 and for a US domestic airline, and a few remain in service.





Boeing 377 Super Stratocruiser by Greg Pepper
GMAX v4 (2007)

PJ-TPQ 'Ocean Voyager'

TradeWind Caribbean Airways (1960s)

When Boeing developed the B-29 Stratofortress during WW II, it was soon realized that it was the beginning of a new plateau of aircraft technology. The USAAF and Boeing soon realized that an impressive transport aircraft could be developed from the bomber, and the Model 367 (C-97) was flying by the end of the war. The B-29's wings, engines, and tail were mated with a completely new fuselage, whose dimensions at that time looked fantastic. The front looked bluff and unstreamlined, but the maximum speed was calculated to be as high as the bomber's. The plane was tailored to the military's needs, but as the war was winding down, the aircraft manufacturer began to think of ways this new technology could be translated into an airliner derivative.

Pan American was very interested in the plane, but thought that it would be even better equipped with the new Wasp Major engine, then in development for the B-29's successor, the B-50. With the promise of an order from Pan Am, Boeing had refined the Model 377 with the new engines by 1946, with all the latest refinements, including full anti-icing, light alloy structure, and foldable tail. The interior would feature a two-deck arrangement, with luxurious furnishings and a spiral staircase to a downstairs bar/lounge.

In June 1946 Pan American cancelled it's DC-7 order (an earlier model quite different from the eventual DC-7) and ordered 20 377's, now named the Stratocruiser. Further orders came from TradeWind, Northwest, American Overseas, SAS, BOAC, and United. TheTradewind, Northwest and United examples were built slightly differently, the most obvious change being the square passenger windows. However, total production of the Stratocruiser only came to 56, with most airlines shying away from the complex Wasp Major engines with their twin General Electric turbos and Hamilton Standard hollow-steel square-tipped props. There were indeed many problems with the "Strat" as it was placed into service, but the competing Connies and DC-6's also had problems that even lead to their temporary grounding. SAS never actually took delivery, their four planes being added to the BOAC order.

The Stratocruiser was typically used in first class transatlantic service (except for the United and Northwest planes), and other international routes. However, they were rapidly replaced by other more economical aircraft in the late 50's and by jets in the early 60's, and were sold to other operators. Many of these were converted to cargo operations, and several were used in the "Guppy" rebuildings, resulting in grossly outsized fuselages for hauling such things as rocket sections and airplane parts. Others became transports for the Israeli air force.

A number of ex USAF examples were use byTtradewind Freightlines for many years after passenger services concluded.


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Repaint by JF


DH106 Comet 4C v2 (2007) - by David Maltby

FS9/FSX (with limitations)

PJ-COM 'Eclipse'

in 50s TradeWind Caribbean Airlines livery

de Havilland started work on the Comet design following the Brabazon Committee's proposals for post war commercial aviation in 1943. A design for an aircraft to fly the Atlantic at 500 mph was proposed and was accepted by BOAC. Production started on an initial order of 8 in 1947.

The new aircraft was a huge advancement in aerodynamics, materials and performance. It had a pressurized cabin and with it's 4 Rolls Royce Ghost (Avons in later versions) turbo jets, it could fly much higher & faster than previous airliners.
BOAC took delivery in 1951 & put the aircraft into evaluation on a number of routes. After very successful trials, the BOAC Comets started the worlds first jet passenger service in May 1952, London Heathrow to Johannesburg.

There were 3 crashes in the first year. Two were put down to pilot error, with over rotation on take off blamed. Another was put down to an in flight break up due to the severe turbulence of a tropical storm. However when another two mysteriously broke up in flight in 1954, the aircraft's air worthiness certificate was revoked & the Comet was grounded.

This event sparked the largest accident investigation effort that the world had ever seen, establishing the British as world leaders in accident investigation. The crashed Comet was rebuilt in a hangar as engineers searched for a cause. Another Comet was submerged in a huge water tank and was repeatedly pressurized to quickly simulate hundreds of flights. After one of these caused a rupture in the fuselage, they had their answer. The problem was found to be due to metal fatigue. The repeated change in pressure had weakened the metal where the stress was concentrated at the corner of a window.

To their enormous credit, de Havilland imediately published all of their data & findings to prevent possible further loss of life. This however effectively handed the market to Boeing & Douglas, with their 707 & DC-8 projects taking full advantage of the research.

The windows were redesigned, with the square shape being rounded, to dissipate the stress. A number of other improvements eventually saw the Comet reintroduced as the Comet 4 in 1958. The Comet was never taken on in great numbers, due in part to it's tarnished reputation. However the Comet 4 did go on to prove itself as a sound & reliable aircraft. It gave many years service & rebuilt the Comet name, so that it could rightly be remembered with pride as the World's first jet airliner.

TCA flew the Comet for many years on both long and medium haul flights. This splendid example wears the 50s livery, and is available for special flights by arrangement with the President or just retro flying.


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Repaint JF

Textures only

Aircraft, panel and sound files from HERE


HS.748 - by Rick Piper FSDS3 v1 (2006) for FS9

PJ-ABD 'Cayo Coco' in passenger configuration and

PJ-ADF 'Island Trader' in cargo configuration

in 90s TradeWind Domestic Mailservice livery

The maiden flight of the Avro 748, G-APZV took place on 24th June 1960 from Woodford Airfield and was piloted by Jimmy Harrison, the Avro Chief Test Pilot.

The flight lasted 2 hours 41 minutes, which was a record duration for the first flight of a civil airliner at that time.

The Indian Government showed an interest in the aircraft and even before the first test flight had taken place a manufacturing agreement had been signed for the aircraft to be built by Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd. in Kanpur ,India.

The original 748 - the Series 1- was powered by Rolls Royce Dart 514 engines rated at 1600 shp.

The second prototype G-ARAY first flew on 10th April 1961. The next version was, not surprisingly, the Series 2. This was powered by more powerful Dart engines the Dart 531 rated at 1910 shp giving the Series 2 the capability of carrying a greater load over a longer range.

In 1963 the Hawker Siddeley Group decided to combine the names of the companies within the group into one and well known names like Gloster and A V Roe became known as Hawker Siddeley Aviation Ltd. The Avro 748 became the Hawker Siddeley 748 (HS748) overnight.

By 1967 the Series 2A was introduced. This had more powerful engines fitted - the Rolls Royce Dart 532 which again improved the performance of the aircraft. Many operators subsequently upgraded their Series 2 aircraft to 2A standard by fitting replacement engines.

In 1977 Hawker Siddeley and the British Aircraft Corporation merged into British Aerospace. The designation of the aircraft now became the British Aerospace 748 (BAe748).

The final version of the 748 to be built was the Series 2B with even more powerful engines, the Dart 536-2.

TradeWind Domestic Mailservice operated the type for many years before retiring them in the early 90s.

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Repaints by Pat Hanna

Textures only

The original base files must be installed:

FS9 Base

FSX Base

Lockheed Super Constellation (2007) by Mike Stone


PJ-SUS 'Susannah'

in 1960s TradeWind Caribbean Airlines livery

History: Super Constellation

Introduction Designed and built by the Lockheed Aircraft Corporation to the specification of the legendary Howard Hughes, the Constellation, the world's first commercially successful pressurized airliner, heralded a new post-war era of safe, comfortable and fast transatlantic air travel. This graceful looking aircraft with its long sinuous fuselage - curving downward at the nose and upward at the rear to its distinctive tripletail, became synonymous with the halcyon days of the big Propliners and is still widely regarded with awe and affection.

In all, 856 Constellations were built, ranging from the first C-69 variant to the magnificent L-1649 Starliner. Sadly 55 years after the first aircraft flew, only a handful remains airworthy as a vibrant reminder of perhaps the most beautiful propliner of them all.

Aircraft design - Born out of a requirement for a long range commercial transport, capable of non-stop travel between New York and Los Angeles, the Constellation was a product of Lockheed's design office staff lead by their chief designer, Clarence L. Kelly Johnson. The same team had already been responsible for the successful series of commercial aircraft including the twin engined Electra and Lodestar and was now working on the design of a new airliner for Pan American (PAA). Known as the model 44 Excalibur, it offered a similar layout to their previous products but with the capacity to accommodate up to 40 passengers. During project discussions, the customer called for a larger aircraft with a pressurized fuselage and, while thought was being given as to how this could be achieved, a significant development occurred. In June 1939, Howard Hughes, a majority shareholder in Transcontinental & Western Airlines (TWA), joined the project with a requirement for a completely new commercial transport capable of sustaining 250 mph at 20'000 ft, with a 6'000 lbs payload over a range of 3'500 miles. The definitive design of this new aircraft was produced by the end of the same year and although it bore the model 49, there were considerable similarities between it and the model 44. The cost of a production aircraft in 1939 was expected to be US$ 425'000.--

To produce an aircraft which would meet the exacting specification set by Howard Hughes, a number of major issues had to be addressed and in particular, the choice of engines and propellers. Eventually, it was decided to equip the aircraft with new and extremely powerful, Wright 18 cylinder R-3350 engines. Each engine produced over 2'200 hp and turned a huge, 15'2 " diameter propeller. However, this combination gave rise to a few specific design challenges. Ground clearance on the massive propellers necessitated an unusually long undercarriage although careful design of the forward fuselage shape helped to reduce this. Again the size of the propellers dictated the wide spacing of the engines along the wing. This, in turn, created a need for considerable tail area to ensure that directional-control was maintained during any asymmetric configuration. Thus, the large tailplane with its distinctive triple fin arrangement was raised out of the engines' slipstream and mounted high on the rear fuselage. It was for these reasons that the unique cambered shape of the fuselage evolved, resulting in the now legendary "Connie" shape. The beautiful elliptical wing shape was a direct adaptation of the Lockheed's P-38 Lightning wing section, which offered the best compromise between lift and drag with excellent stall characteristics. The wing conferred such high performance on the Constellation that, when first built, it was faster than any contemporary for engined bomber and could actually exceed the speed of some versions of the Mitsubishi A6M Zero fighter.

Airline orders - The confidence of both PAA and TWA in the L-049 design was such that even before construction had begun the latter carrier had placed an order for nine aircraft, which it later increased to 40, whilst PAA followed suit soon after with an initial order for 40. However, history conspired to deny Lockheed their commercial triumph when, following America's entry into World War II, all civil contracts were frozen and the production lines were taken over by the U.S. Army.

World War II - The L-049 was redesignated the C-69 by the United States Army Air Force (USAAF) and orders were placed for a total of 180 of the aircraft with the prototype first flying on the January 9, 1943. By early 1945, the C-69 had been incorporated into the USAAF's Air Transport Command Service and was being flown, on behalf of the USAAF, by crews from both PAA and TWA on routes between the United States and Europe. However, as hostilities drew to a close, only fifteen C-69's had been delivered and the military order was subsequently reduced to 73 aircraft.

Consequently, Lockheed were left with surplus airframes and the Company decided to steal a march on their competitors by introducing a modification program to convert the C-69s for civilian use whilst developing a true civilian variant for airline customers. This prudent move gave Lockheed a significant lead over their rivals, the Douglas DC-6 and the Boeing Stratocruiser (both of which were almost 18 months behind their development) and resulted in orders for over 100 L-049s, from eight airlines, within a week of V-Day.

Further Connie development - The L-049 was little more than an interim version in the development process and the first true commercial variant of the Constellation was the L-649. This model incorporated the first of many performance and system updates that were to be a feature of the Constellation's development. Eastern Airlines was the only customer for the L-649. The subsequent L-749 variant represented the culmination of the original design. Enhanced capability, through increased power, extended range and higher operating weights, made the L-749 a far more attractive proposition for the airlines.

The L-1049 Super Constellation, which first flew in July 1951, offered major improvements in range and payload and these aspects continued to be refined as the series was developed. Progressive engine developments resulted in the turbo-compound version, which produced 3250 hp through the addition of power recovery turbines (PRT). This modification drew energy from spent exhaust gases and fed the recovered power back into the rear of the engine crankshaft, through a geared coupling, to provide a 20 % increase power. The most noticeable visual changes came from its increased length of 18 ft 4 in, through the insertion of two fuselage plugs, one forward of wing and one aft and the replacement of main cabin portholes with squared windows. The flight deck environment was also improved to aid crew comfort and included redesigned flight deck glazing. Most national flag carriers including Air France, BOAC, IBERIA, KLM and Lufthansa in Europe, Northwest and TWA in the United States and Air India and Qantas in the Far East flew Super Constellations.

The ultimate Constellation was the L-1649 Starliner. Driven by the requirements of TWA for an extra long range aircraft to counter the competition from the Douglas DC-7C, the Starliner was created by a marriage of the L-1049G fuselage to a totally new wing design, which offered the aircraft transoceanic range and a significantly improved performance.

Representing the pinnacle of piston-engined air transport design, the Starliner's operational career was curtailed by the dawning of the jet age. In fact, the first jet services began very shortly after the Starliner's debut on the North-Atlantic routes, and effectively made the type redundant, which resulted in a production run of only 44 aircraft. The Starliner, which cost Lockheed US $60 million to develop, was the company's only unprofitable Constellation variant.

TradeWind operated the type in the mid 60s, during the transition from 'Airways' to 'Airlines'. As a consequence a variety of schemes were seen across the then fleet.


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Repaint by Pat Hanna

Panel by Hans-Joerg Naegele,Wolfram Beckert, Howard Sodja, and Jan Visser