VH-EAJ. Lockheed L-1049E Constellation. c/n 4549.

 

This aircraft was originally built as a Lockheed 1049E-55-89 for a Braathens SAFE order

It was completed as a Lockheed 1049E-55-81 for Qantas Empire Airways

To view images of this aircraft being built please click 'HERE'

Entered onto the Australian Aircraft Register as VH-EAJ - February 09, 1954

Registered to Qantas Empire Airways Ltd, Sydney

First flown - June 04, 1954

The export C. of A. (E-27617) was issued - June 18, 1954

Accepted by Qantas Empire Airways at Lockheed Burbank - June 30, 1954

The aircraft was named 'Southern Star'

Departed Burbank on the delivery flight to Australia - July 02, 1954

Arrived Sydney (Kingsford Smith) on completion of the delivery flight - July 05, 1954

Delivery route: Burbank - Honolulu - Nadi - Sydney

Flight crew: Captain A. A. E. Yates

Operated first revenue service Sydney (Kingsford Smith) - Vancouver - July 24, 1954

Withdrawn from service for modification to 1049E-01-55 standard - July 22, 1956

Returned to service - August 08, 1956

Withdrawn from service for the fitment of weather radar - March 06, 1957

Returned to service - April 07, 1957

Collided wth the wingtip of 'VH-EAM' at Sydney Airport whilst taxying out for departure - December 16, 1957

This flight Sydney - Hong Kong was delayed for 7 hours whilst repairs were made to the aircraft

Operated final revenue service Sydney - Port Morseby - Sydney - November 26, 1959

Withdrawn from service for major 'D' overhaul

Sold to Lockheed Aircraft Corporation - 1959

Acceptance flight conducted from Sydney (Kingsford Smith) - January 02, 1960

The aircraft had flown 15,607 hours with 3,902 cycles

Departed Sydney on the ferry flight to Ontario via Nadi - Honolulu (Captain J. J. Connolly) - January 05, 1960

Cancelled from the Australian Aircraft Register - January 08, 1960

Entered onto the United States Aircraft Register as N9718C - January 13, 1960

Leased to Twentieth Century Airlines - January 1960

Leased to Capitol Airways as the registered operator - February 06, 1961

Sold to Capitol Airways - December 1961

Operated by Capitol International Airways for Berliner Flug Ring during European summer - 1966 / 1967

The aircraft was configured to seat 108 passengers

It had flown 22,976 hours - July 12, 1967

Withdrawn from use and stored at Wilmington, Delaware - 1967

Flown to Sebring, Florida for storage - March / April 1970

Advertised for sale for $US 25,000

Sold to California Airmotive but remained stored at Sebring - July 05, 1972

Sold to Midair Inc - April 13, 1973

Flown to Barstow, California for conversion to sprayer configuration

Midair Inc was declared bankrupt - 1974

The intended conversion to a sprayer configuration was never commenced

Observed at Barstow in a partially broken-up condition - March 1977

Cancelled from the United States Aircraft Register - April 1982

 

VH-EAJ. Qantas - 'Southern Star' in the standard livery at Burbank Airport, June 04, 1954.

(L. Ritchie Collection Copyright Image 1803-088.)

VH-EAJ. Qantas - 'Southern Star' in the standard livery at Burbank Airport, June 30, 1954.

(L. Ritchie Collection Copyright Image 1803-089.)

VH-EAJ. Qantas - 'Southern Star' in the standard livery at Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport, date unknown.

The gentleman in the photo is the Australian actor John W. F. Goffage (Chips Rafferty)

(Qantas Heritage Collection Copyright Image 1802-087.)

N9718C. Capitol International Airways - in the standard livery at Berlin Templehof Airport, June 06, 1965.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1803-257.)

N9718C. Capitol International Airways - in the standard livery at Wilmington Airport, circa 1967.

(R. N. Smith Collection Copyright Image 1803-219.)