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 Lockheed c-130e Hercules
Crew Chief: 

The venerable Lockheed C-130 has been the most successful military transport since the Douglas C-47. During the 1950s the versatile Lockheed C-130 Hercules was originally designed as an assault transport but was adapted for a variety of missions, including: special operations (low-level and attack), close air support and air interdiction, mid-air space capsule recovery, search and rescue (SAR), aerial refueling of helicopters, weather mapping and reconnaissance, electronic surveillance, fire fighting, aerial spraying, Arctic/Antarctic ice resupply and natural disaster relief missions.


On 23 August 1954, the first of two YC-130A test aircraft made its maiden flight from Burbank CA to Edwards AFB, CA. The initial production model was the C-130A, with four three-bladed Allison T56-A-9 turboprops. A total of 219 were ordered. The first production C-130A (S/N 53-3129) flew on 7 April 1955 and deliveries began in December 1956. The C-130B entered service in June 1959. A total of 134 were delivered to the Air Force. The B-model introduced the four-bladed Allison T56-A-7 turboprops, carries additional fuel in the wings, and has strengthened landing gear.

 The C-130E is an extended-range development of the C-130B. A total of 369 were ordered and deliveries began in April 1962. The maximum ramp weight of the E-model increased to 155,000 pounds (70,307kg), 20,000 pounds (9,072kg) more than the B-model. Its fuel capacity was increased by over 17,000 pounds (7,711kg). More powerful Allison T-56-A-7A engines were used and a pair of 680 gallon external fuel tanks was installed between the engines. Similar to the E-model, the C-130H has updated T56-A-T5 turboprops, a redesigned outer wing, updated avionics, and other minor improvements, deliveries began in June 1974. The H-model has become the most produced of all C-130 models, with orders for 565 as of the end of 1979 more than 350 of those for the USAF.


More than 900 C-130s and derivatives have been delivered to the U.S. Air Force during the past 30 years. The aircraft type currently serves in over 60 foreign countries and is expected to remain in production well into the 21st century.


On 1 July 1975, the 36th Tactical Airlift Squadron was reassigned from the Tactical Air Command and relocated to the 62d Military Airlift Wing at McChord AFB, WA. To prepare for C-130's an assault landing strip was constructed at McChord along with addition of new drop zones required to maintain crew proficiency in the Tactical Airlift mission. Shortly thereafter, the “Eagle Airlifters” began their first rotation under MAC with their deployment to Howard AFB, Canal Zone in late 1976. Throughout the units McChord the C-130 assignment the Eagle Airlifters would participate in many worldwide exercises & deployments including Humanitarian missions.


During the 1980 eruption of Mt St Helens in Washington State, the 36th performed search and rescue operations drawing on past experiences where personnel were credited with locating downed aircraft and vessels saving many lives.  

 During their proud 14 year history flying the C-130 at McChord, the “Eagle Airlifters” received three Air Force Outstanding Unit Awards, and after 4 nominations the 36th was honored as the 22d Air Forces Best C-130 squadron in 1983. The 36th was also recognized as the safest active duty C-130, having accrued more than 180,000 hrs without a mishap.

In 1987 the 36th TAS was selected for inactivation, after a closer review, order was revised to call for a reduction of squadron end strength . On 13 January 1988 the Department of Defense announced that the inactivation of the 36th was cancelled but the squadron would be reduced in size, personnel and assigned aircraft (from 18 C-130's to 10). One year later, the Squadron would lose the remaining aircraft and convert to the C-141 as a the 36th Military Airlift Squadron. On 1 October 1993, the 36th be move to Yokota AB, Japan under the 374th Airlift Wing flying the C-130.



  • TYPE:  Tactical airlifter

  • MANUFACTURER:  Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co.

  • POWER: Four Allison T56-A-7A turboprops (4,300 shp)

  • DIMENSIONS:  Span- 132 ft. 7 in. Length- 97 ft. 9 in. Height- 38 ft. 3 in

  • CARGO COMPARTMENT DIMENSIONS:  Height- 9 ft, Length-41, Width-10 ft 3 in; Cargo Door Length-10 ft 3 in.

  • WEIGHTS:  Empty-72,892 lbs, Combat- 155,000, Max T.O. / Landing- 155,000 lbs

  • MAXIMUM PAYLOAD:  42,000 lbs, or 92 passengers 64 airborne troops, or 74 litters with 2 medical personnel  

  • SPEED:  Maximum- 384mph, Cruising- 345mph. 

  • RANGE: 2,420 miles  

  • SERVICE CEILING:  23,000 ft. 

  • UNIT COST:  $11.9 million (1998)

  • PRODUCTION TOTALS:  more than 900 (all models)

  • CREW: C-130E: Five (two pilots, navigator, flight engineer and loadmaster). Aeromedical Evacuation Role: A basic crew of five (two flight nurses and three medical technicians)

  • McCHORD BASED UNITS: 62d MAW/36th TAS (1975-1989)

C-130E 62-1789

The Museums C-130E (S/N 62-1789) was a workhorse for a number of units before its retirement at McChord on 8 October 2009. Plans are to repaint the aircraft in the Southeast Asia camouflage pattern worn by C-130's of the 36th TAS in the late 70's . The aircraft will be placed on Heritage Hill across from the types former wing mate - the Museums C-141B StarLifter.  Restoration & Sighting should be complete in 2010. 


06 NOVEMBER 1962

Accepted by the U.S. Air Force



To 1608th Air Transport Group, Charleston AFB, SC

(Military Air Transportation Service)



18 JANUARY 1963

To 1608th Air Transport Wing, Charleston AFB, SC

(Military Air Transportation Service / Military Airlift Command)



02 JULY 1966

To 316 Troop Carrier Wg, 36th Troop Carrier Sq, Langley AFB, VA (5685.6 hrs)

(Tactical Air Command)

Repainted in SEA Camouflage - 28 November 1966



12 MARCH 1968

To 464th Tactical Airlift Wing, Pope AFB, NC (7025.0 hrs)

(Tactical Air Command)

Tailcode "PB" & "PR"



01 APRIL 1972

To 317th Tactical Airlift Wing, Little Rock AFB, AR (10,349.6 hrs)

(Tactical Air Command)

Tailcode "LK"



27 NOVEMBER 1974

To 434th Tactical Airlift Wing, Richards Gebaur AFB, MS (11,866.4 hrs)

(Air Force Reserve)

Tailcode "KM"



28 JULY 1982

To 439th Tactical Airlift Wing (905th CAMS) Westover AFB, MA (15,801.4 hrs)

(Air Force Reserve)



30 FEBRUARY 1987

To 317th Tactical Airlift Wing, Little Rock AFB, AR (17,053.7 hrs)

(Military Airlift Command)

Repainted in European 1 Camouflage - 03 March 1990 (18,855.7 hrs)

Repainted in AMC Gray Camouflage - 10 October 1995 ( 21,239.6 hrs)



14 DECEMBER 2006

Grounded @ PEMCO (Alabama Aircraft Industries Inc) during primary depot maintenance

  while assigned to 317th Airlift Wing, 53d Airlift Squadron Little Rock AFB, AR

(Air Mobility Command)

Total airframe hours - 27, 328.2

Engine #1 hours (AD00106889) - 11,132.1

Engine #2 hours (AD00104414) - 12,432.8

Engine #3 hours (AD00106927) - 10,008.2

Engine #4 hours (AD00101795) - 10,707.8



08 OCTOBER 2009

Loaned to McChord Air Museum, McChord AFB, WA for display.

(United States Air Force Museum Program)

Flown from PEMCO (Alabama Aircraft Industries Inc) on 08 Oct 2009

Website provided and maintained by:
The McChord Air Museum Foundation
P.O. Box 4205
McChord AFB, WA. 98438-0205
e-mail - mamfound@mcchordairmuseum.org