Fred Cox DC-8 Jet Collection – Panagra DC-8F-55


DC-8 Jet Collection



1/50 Scale

Color Scheme: Delivery Colors

Registration: N1509U

Composition: Douglas Factory Polished Aluminum Model

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

Condition: Excellent

Model History: The blank for this model was made for me by
my friend Gary Field in March 2003 using a pattern from an Original
Douglas Factory DC-8-50 blank. On August 21, 2004 I gave it, along
with a very rare set of Panagra DC-8-F-55 Decals made by Douglas,
to Jim Powroznik to be finished and Once
Again Jim did a Wonderful Job on it.

DC-8 History:
Pan American-Grace Airways (Panagra) was
created on January 25, 1929 by a 50/50 percent investment from
Pan American World Airways and W.R. Grace Corporation – a very
powerful U.S. trading organization. The airline was setup to carry
passengers, cargo and mail from Panama to Columbia, Ecuador, Peru,
Chile, Argentina & Uruguay via the West Coast of South America
initially using Douglas DC-2 & DC-3 propliners. At the time
it was a clever way for Pan Am to enter these South American Countries
without "stepping on the feet" of the W.R. Grace Corp.
The agreement stipulated that Panagra would only operate flights
south of Panama, but through a creative interchange agreement
with National Airlines & Pan Am they were able to operate
flights north to Miami & New York. Thus when Panagra inaugurated
their first (Factory Delivered) DC-8-31 Service from New York
– Idlewild (now JFK) – Miami – Panama – Lima – Buenos Aires on
May 2, 1960 — National crews flew the aircraft New York – Miami,
Pan Am crews flew the aircraft Miami – Panama City and Panagra
crews then flew the aircraft onward to the South American destinations.
Click Here To See A Panagra DC-8-31 Model.
As Panagra accepted more Factory Delivered DC-8s their service
expanded throughout their route network in South America. The
Panagra 50/50 partnership was successfully operated for nearly
40 years by a loyal & hard working work force but Pan Am and
W.R. Grace were never very amicable partners at the boardroom
level. In December 1965 Braniff International Airways bought W.R.
Grace’s 50% interest in Panagra and then in March 1966 Braniff
was successful in acquiring the remaining 50% from Pan Am (all
with CAB approval of course). The merger of Braniff & Panagra
was finalized on February 1, 1967 and Braniff took over Panagra’s
fleet of DC-7s, DC-8-31s and a single DC-8F-55 (model shown above).
Braniff also assumed the purchase commitments for 5 Factory Delivered
DC-8 Super 62s, including 1 DC-8-62CF for their cargo needs, which
had greater range and better high altitude takeoff performance
Click Here To See A Braniff DC-8-62 Model
. Panagra was the -only- airline to take Factory Delivery
of the four DC-8-31s that were built by Douglas.
Here to See Panagra’s DC-8 Fleet Information.

Click Here
to View a Photo of the Actual Aircraft
* Since Panagra operated their DC-8F-55 for only 5 months
before merging into Braniff International, there are very few
photos of it available. In fact, I haven’t been able to find one
that I can use on my web site. The closest thing I could find
is a post card of the aircraft in Panagra colors but Braniff titles
(post merger). If anyone
has a good photo of this aircraft and would allow it to be displayed
on this web site, with proper credit to the photographer, I would
Greatly Appreciate It!
Please email me at:


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