DC-4 Flight Tests - Their Relation to Large Air-Transport Designs 390171
THAT large airplanes, and the DC-4 in particular, pay their way in air-transport service, especially for long ranges over 400 miles, is indicated by the flight-test data reported by the author. The 1000 individual tests made on the DC-4 during 74 flights occupying 90 hr were made for stability, control, operation under extreme conditions, and performance. This 65,000-lb four-engined landplane with a wing span of 138¼ ft and an overall length of 97 ft, Mr. Reed explains, originally was conceived by agreement between the Douglas Co. and five major airlines: United Air Lines, Transcontinental & Western Air, American Airlines, Eastern Air Lines, and Pan American Airways.
Data are presented that show that landing speed of the DC-4 is well below the design limit established by past practice and, therefore, an improvement in landing safety is indicated; that climb performance is better, especially with one engine dead; that level speeds are increased especially at the higher altitudes; and that take-off is safer. The two-engined DC-3 is used as a basis of comparison.