Lockheed 12A heading for Switzerland

On the way to its new owner in Altenrhein, Switzerland, Lockheed 12A NC18125 (c/n 1222) ‘Eliane’ landed at Duxford, UK on 11 June 2023. It came from the Florida, USA where it is registered to TVPX Aircraft Solutions, of North Salt Lake (UT). The twin made refueling stops at Reykjavik and Wick before arriving at Duxford. It departed to Altenrhein the next day.

This particular Lockheed 12A, an Electra Junior, was built in Burbank (CA) in 1937. It was delivered as NC18125 to Varney Air Transport in June of that year, but was sold to Continental Airlines soon. It served this company until the outbreak of World War II.

The Lockheed was then transferred to Canada. The Royal Canadian Air Force flew it with serial 7837 until 1945. After the end of the war the plane returned to the USA as NC18125. It became an executive transport for several owners. The most attached to the Lockheed must have been Darden III Colgate, a member of the Colgate toothpaste dynasty. He used his personal transport from 1966 to 1998!

The Electra Junior then went back to Canada one again and was flown by Invicta Research Inc. as CF-MZE, later as CF-LKD. In October 2010 a full restoration of the plane was taken up at Vance Brand Airport in Longmont (CO). Since its restoration CF-LKD appeared at various airshows in Canada and the USA. It was finally sold back to the USA in November 2020, becoming NC18125 again.

Photo: David Whitworth

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