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Lockheed L.18 Lodestar / C-56 / C-57 / C-59 / C-60


Design and development of the Lockheed 18 Lodestar began as a result of the poor sales achievement of the Lockheed 14 Super Electra, the prototype first flown on 21 September 1939.
Converted from a Super Electra, the prototype differed primarily by having the fuselage lengthened by 1.68m to provide accommodation for 15 to 18 passengers.

Depending upon the other facilities provided, some were produced with high-density bench seating for a maximum of 26 passengers, and were available with a variety of engines by Pratt & Whitney and Wright.

Despite the improved economy demonstrated by the Lodestar, Lockheed failed again to achieve worthwhile sales in the United States. The type appealed more to export customers, with airlines or government agencies in Africa, Brazil, Canada, France, the Netherlands, Norway, South Africa, the UK and Venezuela ordering a total of 96 aircraft.

The C-60 is a twin-engine transport based on the Lockheed Model 18 Lodestar. The Army began ordering military versions of the Model 18 in May 1941. Depending upon engines and interior configuration, these transports were given C-56, C-57, C-59 or C-60 basic type designations. Lockheed built more C-60As for the AAF (325) than any other version of the military Lodestar.

There was only limited military interest before the beginning of World War II, but procurement, particularly by the US Army Air Force, raised the total of Lodestars built by Lockheed to 625 before production ended.




After the war, many military Lodestars were declared surplus and sold to private operators for use as cargo or executive transports. A number of conversions as executive transports were carried out in the USA by companies like Howard Aero and Lear Inc.




Lockheed 18-07 Lodestar
Engines: 2 x Pratt & Whitney Hornet S1E2-G radial, 652kW
Max take-off weight: 8709 kg / 19200 lb
Empty weight: 5103 kg / 11250 lb
Wingspan: 19.96 m / 65 ft 6 in
Length: 15.19 m / 49 ft 10 in
Height: 3.61 m / 11 ft 10 in
Wing area: 51.19 sq.m / 551.00 sq ft
Max. speed: 351 km/h / 218 mph
Ceiling: 6220 m / 20400 ft
Range: 2897 km / 1800 miles

Lockheed 18-56 Lodestar

Engines: 2 x Wright R-1820-71, 1184 hp
Length: 49.836 ft / 15.19 m
Height: 11.089 ft / 3.38 m
Wingspan: 65.486 ft / 19.96 m
Wing area: 550.04 sq.ft / 51.1 sq.m
Max take off weight: 17503.3 lb / 7938.0 kg
Weight empty: 11651.2 lb / 5284.0 kg
Max. speed: 220 kts / 407 km/h
Cruising speed: 174 kts / 322 km/h
Service ceiling: 23294 ft / 7100 m
Wing load: 31.78 lb/sq.ft / 155.0 kg/sq.m
Range: 1390 nm / 2575 km
Crew: 3
Payload: 14pax




Lockheed C-60 A Lodestar
Engines: Two Wright R-1820-87, 1,200 hp
Span: 65 ft. 6 in.
Length: 49 ft. 10 in.
Height: 11 ft. 1 in.
Weight: 18,500 lbs. max.
MAUW: 21,000 lb
Maximum speed: 257 mph.
Cruising speed: 232 mph.
Range: 1,700 miles
Service Ceiling: 25,000 ft.
Armament: None
Cost: $123,000



Lockheed 18 Lodestar




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