Battle of the Tails 1 #1: a classic tale
My first contribution to the Battle of the Tails 1 on Flightglobal/AirSpace is the tail (or should I write: the set of tails) of a classic aircraft with a tale: the Lockheed Constellation, in this case the L-749-79 c/n 2604 N749NL in the Aviodrome Museum at Lelystad airport in The Netherlands (EHLE). The still airworthy U.S.-registered aircraft is painted in a pseudo-historic KLM-livery with pseudo registration PH-FLE, as the museum is located in the province of FLEvoland. In 1939 millionaire Howard Hughes approached Lockheed to build a large and fast airliner with which his struggling airline TWA could beat rival PanAm. Lockheed adapted an earlier design, ironically destined for PanAm, into what, according to many, became the most beautiful piston engined airliner. There is still one real ex-KLM Constellation in existence, c/n 2553, ex-PH-TDT "Tilburg". This aircraft is now part of the Science Museum collection at Wroughton airfield in the UK, painted in the colors of TWA, an airline for which it never flew. The photo was taken on 29 July 2012.