Fred Cox DC-8 Jet Collection – VIA DC-8-53

Fred Cox
DC-8 Jet Collection

Venezolana Internacional de Aviacion Sociedad Anonima
VIASA

DC-8-53AB*

1/50 Scale





Color Scheme: Early Colors (Not Sure If This Is The First Colors)

Registration: YV-C-VID

Composition: A Douglas Factory Style Polished Aluminum Model made by Gary Field

Dimensions: Length: 35.5" (91cm), Wingspan 34" (86cm)

Condition: Near Mint

Model History: The blank for this model was made for me by my friend Gary Field using a pattern from an Original Douglas Factory DC-8-50 blank. I then sent it to my friend Don Stevens at Airborne Replicas for finishing in the Philippines & received it back on December 2, 2003.

VIASA’s DC-8 History: VIASA had a relatively short but colorful life as the National Flag Carrier of Venezuela. The airline was created in 1959 by a decision of the Venezuelan Government to transfer the International Routes of Aeropostal (Linea Aeropostal Venezolana) to a new airline which was to be free of government influence. This new airline was to be a joint venture with Aeropostal owning 51% and private investors owning the remaining 49%. This new airline was named VIASA and was designated as the Flag Carrier of Venezuela. In 1960 VIASA ordered two Convair 880 Jetliners to fly from Venezuela to North & Central America and also wet leased DC-8s from KLM Royal Dutch Airlines which enabled them to begin services to Europe in April 1961. Once again, KLM offered high quality guidance and expertise to this new airline, like they had with Garuda Indonesian Airways and Philippine Airlines. This close relationship between VIASA and KLM lasted for over 25 years and enabled VIASA to provide a high level of customer service and become profitable right from the start. In 1965/1966 VIASA took Factory Delivery of two DC-8-53 aircraft and in 1968/1969 VIASA received their Factory Deliveries of two DC-8 Super 63 aircraft. In the late 1960s VIASA also formed an all cargo airline subsidiary named Transcarga which operated DC-8F Jet Trader aircraft on heavy cargo routes to North & Central America. VIASA utilized their DC-8 fleet, including those acquired and leased from KLM, throughout the 1970s and into the 1980s. Click Here to See VIASA’s DC-8 Fleet Information. In fact, even though VIASA had entered the wide body aircraft "age" in the 1970s, their DC-8-53s continued to play an important role with the airline until 1984 and the DC-8-63s until 1986. Sadly, VIASA went out of business in 1997 due to poor guidance by Iberia (Flag Carrier of Spain) who had replaced KLM in that role & extremely poor labor relations. There have been some attempts to resurrect VIASA but none have been successful and no airline to date has been able to provide the high level of service that VIASA once did.

* Explanation of the "AB" in DC-8-53AB: When Douglas made the DC-8F-54, DC-8F-55 & DC-8-55 models they were able to push the aft bulkhead further back into the tail and thus increase the cargo and/or passenger capacity. The Passenger Versions of the DC-8-55 (and two DC-8-53s for VIASA) were made in two variants to accommodate airline requests. The first variant left the aft bulkhead location & interior the same as in earlier DC-8 variants and was designated by Douglas as the ‘L’ for "less aft bulkhead." This variant was ordered by Garuda, Japan Air Lines & KLM. The second variant included the relocation of the aft bulkhead further back & thus increased the interior size which accommodated up to 189 passengers (up from 179). This variant was designated by Douglas as the ‘AB’ for "aft bulkhead" (extension) and was ordered by SAS (DC-8-55) & VIASA (DC-8-53). If you would like to see a Complete List of Technical Information for All DC-8 Variants Please Click on the ‘DC-8 Technical Information’ Link on my Home Page.

Click Here to View a Photo of the Actual Aircraft
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Photo Courtesy Of & Many Thanks To: AIRLINERS.NET and Photographer Ger Buskermolen



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