Les Constellations TWA

                                

  TWA LOCKHEED CONSTELLATION PAGES

              TWA Lockheed Constellation as you never see it

                           . Pictures of TWA Constellations

                                   . Cutaway TWA Lockheed Constellation

                                   . The most beautiful fleet of the world

                                   . When TWA put the Star in the Sky

                                   . First TWA Constellation

                                   . TWA Constellation under construction

                                   . TWA First's

In the late 1930s, Howard Hughes, the majority stockholder of TWA, decided he wanted an aircraft that could fly faster and further than any other. He contracted Lockheed Aircraft to build the Constellation, or Connie, as it later became affectionately known. Hughes insisted that the project remain top secret. The Connie’s unique features included huge radial piston engines with fifteen-foot diameter propellers, tall landing gear to maintain ground clearance for the propellers, a downward sloping nose and a triple-fin tail. When commercial planes were requisitioned for wartime service in World War II, the secret could be kept no longer and the world was shocked to see how technologically advanced the Constellation was; even some fighter planes of the time could not match the top speed of 340 miles per hour. In a demonstration of Howard Hughes’ audacity, he had the Connie delivered to the military sporting the TWA paint scheme. Thus, the Connie made its first flight on January 9, 1943 as the C-69 transport. After the war, the Constellation dominated the commercial market with its luxury and speed, flying coast to coast non-stop.