6/1/10 – This 1933 Douglas DC-1 (Douglas Commercial No. 1) was the first in a series of what was to become the most famous transport aircraft in the world. It was given Douglas C/N 1137 and had two Wright SGR-1820F-1, 710-HP radial engines.
This is an early Douglas photo, probably mid-1933. Note the winglets between the engine nacelle and fuselage. I understand they were soon removed. Note also the straight leading edge on the rudder, with a counter-balance on the top.
DC-1, X223Y, just minutes before her maiden flight at Clover Field on July 1, 1933. The flight nearly ended in disaster, as both engines quite less than a minute after takeoff!
I love this shot in front of the terminal at Glendale. Note the cute little tailwheel fairing and that it still has the ground adjustable props. This photo may be wrinkled some but it's extra sharp and a real treasure.
Another shot in front of the terminal at Glendale. By now the aircraft has a step in the leading edge of the rudder, and the counter-balance at the top is gone. (Postcard photo)
The aircraft was given Company Plane No. 300, which is visible on the vertical fin. When it was British registered they showed it as a DC-1-109. I'm not sure what the "109" indicated.
The DC-1 is now NC223Y and named "The City of Los Angeles". Note the window curtains and the absence of the tail wheel fairing and main gear doors. By this time the aircraft had Hamilton Standard, 3E50, counterweighted, controllable pitch propellers. They would have been "constant speed", i.e. with governors, but not "full feathering". That concept was yet to come.
According to several sources, through its seven-year career the aircraft was variously registered as X223Y (X - Experimental), NR223Y (R - Restricted), NS223Y (S - State), NC223Y (C - Commercial), N233YH, G-AFIF (British), and by the French as EC-AGJ and EC-AAE. She met her demise in Malaga, Spain in December, 1940 when an engine quit on takoff.
All photos are from the Ken Stoltzfus Collection and are for sale.