February, 1941, Canadian Aviation
Winnipeg, Manitoba, January 10 – The first of six new Lockheed ‘Lodestars’ purchased by Trans-Canada Airlines landed at Stevenson Field here just before sundown today, exactly five hours and 10 minutes after leaving Sea Island Airport, Vancouver.
The sleek skyliner set a new record for the Vancouver-Winnipeg non-stop hop without half trying. The previous speed record was five hours fifteen minutes established in 1938 by a Lockheed 14. The Lodestar had to contend with cross winds and even then only half of its power from two 1,200 horsepower engines was used.
The plane was piloted by Capt. R. F. George, T.C.A.’s flight superintendent, who traveled to Vancouver to accept delivery of the ship from Burbank, California. D. S. Driscoll was First Officer.
The Lodestar is larger than the Lockheed 14. It is 1,000 pounds heavier gross weight, five feet longer and 600 more horsepower. It is broader through the fuselage and has a larger tail assembly. The wing spread is 65 feet, six inches, the same as the 14.
Top speed is more than 263 miles an hour, faster than any other passenger ship in service in the world. Cruising speed is 225 miles an hour, about 30 miles an hour faster than the 14. The craft will not go into service for some time as personnel of T.C.A. have to become accustomed to its operation and minor modifications have to be made.
Delivery of the Lodestars was made to T.C.A. at Seattle, being flown from the factory at Burbank by Lockheed personnel. The first was flown to Vancouver and thence to Winnipeg, after clearing customs. The second and third aircraft followed. One was flown to Winnipeg and the other to Lethbridge, where it is being used in flight training.
With a longer fuselage than the Lockheed 14 T.C.A. now operates, the Lodestar presents, perhaps, an even more graceful appearance. It brings to the national airline needed accommodation for more passengers and cargo. It carries fourteen passengers, beside the crew of three and 2,500 pounds of disposable load. This exceeds the useful load of the present aircraft by a half ton.
This article originally appeared in the February, 1941 edition of Canadian Aviation.