The world's last proper propliner

In 1953, as the jet era loomed over Santa Monica, the Douglas Aircraft Company unveiled the DC-7. It was a last hurrah for piston power, as Airliner World reveals

The 1950s are remembered for the advent of the jet era, as Comets and Convairs, DC-8s and Dash 80s led the way for the common man to fly at the same speeds as fighter pilots – albeit with G-suits swapped for gin and tonics.

However, as turbojets roared onto the scene, the propliner was still far from its death throes, with Lockheed and Douglas Aircraft producing their definitive articles, the L-1649 Starliner and the DC-7C, respectively. Both were developments of earlier types – Lockheed having leveraged its Super Constellation while Douglas doubled down on the DC-6. It would be the latter company that achieved greater sales success and, in the process, created what many consider to be the ultimate propliner.

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