Fred Cox DC-8 Jet Collection – CL DC-8F-54

DC-8 Jet Collection




Color Scheme: Delivery Colors


Composition: Douglas Factory Polished Aluminum Model

Length: 35.5″ (91cm), Wingspan 34″ (86cm)

Condition: Excellent

History: The model blank and decals were produced by Marketing Aids (subcontractor
for Douglas) in the 1960s. I acquired them from two different private collectors
in 2000. My friend Jim Powroznik (James Powroznik Custom Models, Clovis, CA) then
used them to refinish the model and delivered it on July 1, 2001. Jim
– Thanks For Another Beautiful Refinishing Job!

DC-8 History:
Capitol International Airways launched services in 1946 from
Symrna, Tennessee using primarily ex-military surplus propeller aircraft converted
for commercial use. Capitol specialized in group and military charters and in
the 1950s grew quickly into the largest US Charter Airline – also known as a Non
Scheduled (Nonsked) or Supplemental Airline. Capitol entered the Jet Age with
the introduction of it’s first Factory Delivered DC-8 Jet Trader (combination
passenger/freighter model) in 1963. As more DC-8s were acquired further expansion
occurred – especially from the USA to Europe. Most of Capitol’s Charters to Europe
were initially for the Military Airlift Command (MAC) but throughout the 1960s
and 1970s the percentage of MAC Charters declined while passenger and cargo charters
increased. The DC-8 was Capitol’s "backbone" aircraft which allowed
their continued aggressive growth. Although Capitol only took 7 Factory Deliveries
of new DC-8s (which were all combination passenger/cargo models), they acquired
a total of 39 additional used DC-8s in a large number of purchase and lease
agreements. These agreements enabled Capitol to both acquire DC-8s as needed and
also lease out or dispose of DC-8s as the market demand fluctuated. This is all
outlined in Capitol’s Fleet Count. Click Here
to See Capitol’s DC-8 Fleet Count
. Another point of interest is that Capitol
operated a large variety of DC-8 variants from the Series 31 on up and was
one of the few airlines to operate all 3 of the Super DC-8 variants – the DC-8-61,
62 & 63
. In addition, Capitol flew their DC-8s with
a large variety of paint schemes – possibly the largest variety of paint schemes
of any airline on the DC-8 throughout their history.
Many of these
paint schemes were necessitated by the nature of the lease (e.g. short term with
a "blended scheme’ of Capitol’s and the Lessor’s or Lessee’s Scheme), but
there were still many variations of the full Capitol International and/or Capitol
Air paint schemes. The model above is in Capitol’s Original Delivery Colors for
the DC-8F-54. To see another Capitol Paint Scheme from the 1960s Click
Here To See A Capitol DC-8-32
. With the advent of US Airline Deregulation,
Capitol was awarded it’s first scheduled service from Newark to Brussels which
began in May 1979 and also began scheduled transcontinental services from New
York to Los Angeles offering low fares on each route. Both of these new scheduled
services were popular with the public but not profitable and were a drain on Capitol’s
financial resources. In 1980, Batchelor Enterprises (owner of International Air
Leases & Arrow Airways), purchased Capitol International with plans to aggressively
expand scheduled services within the USA and to Europe and Puerto Rico. On December
12, 1981 the airline was renamed Capitol Air and introduced new "Skysaver"
fares to Europe & within the USA using two recently acquired DC-10s for Europe
and part of the DC-8 fleet for the USA routes. The DC-8s & DC-10s were repainted
with large "Skysaver" titles and although the fares were again popular
with the public the competition and a downturn in the economy left Capitol losing
money each year in the early 1980s. In 1983, Capitol was bought out by yet another
company which attempted to make Capitol profitable by further expansion into new
markets in the Caribbean and Israel. However, these efforts were not successful
and the losses worsened. Consequently, in 1984 Capitol was forced to massively
cut routes and employees and to park aircraft. Unfortunately these actions were
"too little – too late"and Capitol Air ceased flying and entered bankruptcy
on November 25, 1984. Sadly, yet
another one of the older, stable airlines
a charter airline)
a great history was killed in the new era of deregulation.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *