Tuesday, November 25, 2008

www.hermantheduck.org


Hello everyone! Scott over at www.hermantheduck.org has just updated again! Be sure to check it out, especially the GREAT article and photos of the ORIGINAL North Central Airlines of the early 1940's. Definitely an education. Enjoy!

Monday, November 24, 2008

A Pilgrimage PART TWO





In the second postings of this series, Gari Kohlhof sent along photos from the Clintonville, Wisconsin Airport, including the famous sign we all know of. Enjoy!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

A Pilgrimage PART ONE






Hello everyone! As with a few of you that read this blog, the 'pilgrimage' to Clintonville, Wisconsin, as well as Madison, Wisconsin, seems to be at the top of the list for North Central historians, and fanatics! To visually see and be in the places where North Central was 'born' and thrived is quite a treat.

One such 'pilgrim' is our friend, Gari Kohlhof, whom I had the pleasure to finally meet at our recent MSP Airliner's Collectors Show. Gari and I had been in contact for a while now so it was good to put a face with a name! Alas, after the show, he made the trips to Madison and Clintonville and is sharing pictures of the adventure with us! Seeing this is a two part series posting, I'll include the photos from Madison first.

Of particular interest is the wonderful 1/50 Scale metal North Central DC-9 model that is currently in the FBO at MSN. Such a rare model to begin with! Note the photos on the wall of the FBO in the background of the photos as well. MANY North Central memories and treasures to be seen. Also included is the old Maintenance Hangar, which one can recognize from photos in 'Ceiling Unlimited,' even with it's changes/improvements. Enjoy!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

'Airlines for the Rest of Us'


Hello everyone! I received an email from a viewer recently regarding a new book that's been published about local service airlines, their rise and subsequent falls/demises. I've just ordered my own copy from Amazon! Here's the Press Release:


New Book Tells Complete Story of America’s Local Service Airlines

Y
ou remember their names as if it were yesterday: Allegheny, Bonanza, Central, Frontier, Lake Central, Mohawk, North Central, Ozark, Pacific, Piedmont, Pioneer, Southern, Trans-Texas, and West Coast – all Local Service Airlines. You may have worked for one, or you may know someone who worked for one, or you are just, like the author of AIRLINES FOR THE REST OF US, someone fascinated by the Locals and what they represented:
a time when boarding an airliner was an adventure, not a tedious chore;
a time when airline personnel thought of each other as family;
a time when airlines vied to provide the best service – not the lowest fares;
a time when a federal agency cooperated with and nurtured the airlines;
and a time when even small communities had reliable guaranteed airline service.
That time may be gone, but it must never be forgotten! Thankfully the newly-published AIRLINES FOR THE REST OF US will help preserve the history of that era forever.
It tells the complete story of the Local Service Airlines: the reasoning behind the C.A.B.’s 1944 decision to create a new class of airline; the origins of each Local, the struggles to survive those early years; the equipment upgrades, from DC-3s all the way up to DC-9s and 737s; the route expansions; the innovative fare promotions; the growth of subsidiaries like Allegheny Commuter; and the reasons why each Local disappeared. There is even a chapter dedicated to the quality of small-community service today.

And there are special features: a chapter of airliner photos and another of anecdotes about each of the Locals, like the story of the Frontier DC-3 that clipped a mountain and kept on flying or the story of Southern’s escaped alligator at Chicago. One appendix lists all of the places where you can still see a restored Local Service airliner and another appendix lists all of the Websites dedicated to Local Service Airlines. There’s also a complete bibliography and an index.

To purchase, go to www.iUniverse.com, www.amazon.com, or www.bn.com and type Airlines For the Rest of Us into the search box. At just $15.95 it’s a must-have piece of American aviation history that is certainly affordable.

Monday, November 10, 2008

First DC-9-50 Video



Hello again everyone! I'm pleased to add the video from YouTube on #851's first flights, compliments of DC9RULES (thanks for posting it!). Enjoy...

Sunday, November 9, 2008

North Central's First DC-9-50






I received a nice set of photos from our good friends Dave DeBace and Terry Love recently and wanted to share with everyone. They are a few shots of the first DC-9-50 Series that North Central purchased, #851, during the signing ceremony. Pete Wahl and Red Wallis are in attendance (note Wallis' tie!). You'll also notice Hal Carr as well as Richard DeBace (yes, Dave's Dad and the Head man on MEC) along with Bob Rubens (Head of NCA Pilot Union). They were instrumental in having the Three Man Rule (3 pilots) voted out of ALPA so North Central could buy the DC-9-50. It took nearly two years for the leg work to be completed for the rule to be voted on before delivery of the aircraft! Of note too, Hal Carr would've never bought the airplanes had they stayed with the Three Man Rule. Enjoy these rare shots at history...:)

On a side note, I'll add the North Central DC-9-50 Test Flights video shortly.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

'The Turn'






Today we share more photos from the Dave DeBace collection. These shots were taken on the 'C' side from a stand in Hangar 1, East Bay. They show a DC-9 in 'turn' mode. Aircraft would come in from the gates waiting for their flights or something had to be fixed/repaired or maybe an MEL needed repair. According to Dave, MEL's were fixed quickly 'back in the day' compared to today. Enjoy!
P.S. Of note are the Old Metropolitan Stadium (Twins) and the Metropolitan Arena (North Stars) in the backgrounds of the photos. Today the area's known as Mall of America.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

"The Unlikely Visitor"






From my good friend Dave DeBace comes another set of photos. Today's is a RARE set (and sight) at that...as you can see! North Central flew the F28 on several test flights in the Spring of 1973. These photos were taken on 'C' Side again. Enjoy!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

More 'C' side photos





My good friend, and former North Central Mechanic, Dave DeBace, has sent some wonderful photos of the repaint process on a DC-9. Over spraying was a common practice in keeping the aircraft looking good but apparently the mechanics didn't like it too well as it never turned out 'right.' There was a great deal of sanding in the process to achieve the right look. Mechanics preferred the stripping affect instead. Alas, enjoy the photos! (more to come)