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This information comes from the listings of Non-Prefixed and Non-Suffixed aircraft reviewed by me in the archives of the National Air & Space Museum, Washington, DC.


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This airplane is a Lockheed Vega Model 5 (S/N 63; ATC #93) manufactured on April 25, 1929 by Lockheed Aircraft Corporation, Burbank, CA.  It left the factory with a Pratt & Whitney Wasp B engine (S/N 1347) of 420-450 HP.  It was a five-place airplane.

It sold on April 25, 1929 to Marland Production Company, Ponca City, OK.  Marland became the Continental Oil Company (CONOCO) and the NC license was issued to CONOCO.  You can see an early image of it on here in Marland livery.

We find NC625E at Tucson twice, the first time on April 21, 1929.  It was flown solo by Tom D. Park.  He was eastbound from Los Angeles, CA to Tulsa, OK.  He noted in the Remarks column of the Register, “Ferry”.  This was undoubtedly the delivery flight for this brand new airplane.

Five months later, on September 16, 1929, we find the airplane at Tucson again, flown this time by R. (Ray) C. Schrader.  He carried as passenger E.J. Nicklas.  Based in Ponca City, OK, they were east bound from Los Angeles to El Paso, TX. Shrader was Marland's pilot and later took charge of operations at Braniff Airlines.

Below, two images of NC625N from Tim Kalina. He says about the images, "Note the Vega is fitted with the rather rare H-S [Hamilton-Standard] controllable pitch propeller with the pushrods. I think this short-lived version was an intermediate step between the adjustable pitch prop with the external circular balances and the later hydraulic adjustable/feathering props. Note too the fat, low-pressure tires."

Lockheed Vega Model 5, NC625E, Date & Location Unknown
Lockheed Vega Model 5, NC625E, Date & Location Unknown

He goes on to say, "The aircraft in the background are a Loening C-2 Air Yacht and the one-and-only Bellanca 77-140/320 Junior. This was a twin-engine development of the P-300 as a prototype for a military bomber. In this photo [below] the plane appears to be fitted with floats [the port float is visible as a white object visible through the automobile window closest to the airplane] which would make it the 320 (when first built with wheels the plane was the 140). The plane was sold to Columbia."

Lockheed Vega Model 5, NC625E, Date & Location Unknown
Lockheed Vega Model 5, NC625E, Date & Location Unknown

Mr. Kalina continues, "These were done from the original negatives. The Bellanca 77-140/320 that appears in the background was built in 1934 [thus these images are circa 1934] and I believe then was sold to Colombia in the same year. Note the home-made trim tab on the rudder. Rare to see this on a wooden Lockheed."

On April 6, 1930, NC625E suffered an accident at Claremore, OK.  No details were given in the NASM record, except that it was repaired.  On November 30, 1932 it suffered another accident at Claremore and was repaired.  As of February 1933 it was converted to a Vega 5C under ATC 384 (seven-place airplane) with larger tail surfaces installed at the Lockheed Factory.

Through 1940, NC625E passed through five more owners and suffered two more accidents.  A third accident at Hermosillo, Mexico on May 30, 1940 burned the airplane completely.  There is no record of the fate of the pilot and four passengers.  No further information.


UPLOADED: 04/19/06 REVISED: 04/23/08

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