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  • Douglas DC-5




    The Douglas DC-5 (Douglas Commercial Model 5) was a 16-to-22-seat, twin-engine propeller aircraft intended for shorter routes than the Douglas DC-3 or Douglas DC-4.

    General Information

    By the time it entered commercial service in 1940, many airlines were canceling orders for aircraft. Consequently, only five civilian DC-5s were built. With the Douglas Aircraft Company already converting to World War II military production, the DC-5 was soon overtaken by world events, although a limited number of military variants were produced.


    The DC-5 was developed in 1938 as a 16-22 seat civilian airliner, designed to use either Pratt & Whitney R-1690 Hornet or Wright R-1820 Cyclone radial engines. It was the first airliner to combine shoulder wings and tricycle landing gear, a configuration that is still common in turboprop airliners and military transport aircraft, although the modern versions are actually high wing, as the structure sits atop the fuselage shell rather than intersecting a significant segment. The tricycle landing gear was innovative for transport airplanes. It provided better ground handling and better ground visibility for the pilots. The fuselage was about two feet above the ground, so loading of passengers and cargo was easier than aircraft with the then-standard conventional landing gear.


    Three aircraft made their way to Australia where they were sold to the United States Army Air Forces (USAAF) and operated for the Allied Directorate of Air Transport (ADAT). Two were destroyed by the end of 1942, the other was transferred to Australian National Airways (ANA), which operated it throughout the war on behalf of ADAT. Read more on these aircraft here.


    For more details on the development of the DC5 and its variants, click here.






    Crew: 3 Capacity: 16-24 passengers
    62 ft 2 in (18.95 m)
    78 ft (24 m)
    19 ft 10 in (6.05 m)
    Wing Area:
    824 sq ft (76.6 sq m)
    Wing Loading:
    24.3 lb/sq ft (119 kg/sq m)
    Empty Weight:
    13,674 lb (6,202 kg)
    Gross weight: 20,000 lb (9,072 kg)
    Fuel Capacity:
    ~550 US gal (460 imp gal; 2,100 l) ; 34 US gal (28 imp gal; 130 l) oil in two nacelle tanks
    2 × Wright GR-1820-G102A Cyclone 9-cylinder air-cooled radial piston engine, 900 hp (670 kW) each at 2,300 rpm and 6,700 ft (2,000 m)
    Maximum speed: 230 mph (370 km/h, 200 kn) at 7,700 ft (2,300 m)
    Cruise Speed:
    195 mph (314 km/h, 169 kn) 65% power at 10,000 ft (3,000 m)
    1,600 mi (2,600 km, 1,400 nmi) maximum
    Rate of Climb:
    1,585 ft/min (8.05 m/s)
    Service Ceiling:
    23,700 ft (7,200 m)

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