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Withdrawn from service for modification to 1049E-01-55 standard - July 22, 1956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Withdrawn from service for the fitment of weather radar - March 06, 1957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Withdrawn from service for major 'D' overhaul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 passengersIt 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Withdrawn from use and stored at Wilmington, Delaware - 1967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.)