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Hear Engines Purr On This C-133 Cargomaster One Last Time

The last flying C-133A Cargomaster makes it's final landing at Travis Air Force Base during the 2008 Travis Air Expo, Aug. 30. The aircraft, which was flew out of Travis AFB from 1958 until its departure in 1971 will be retired and put on display at the base. (U.S. Air Force photo/Kristen Rohrer)

Fly along on the last flight of last remaining airworthy C-133 Cargomaster in this gorgeous video from 2008.

The C-133 Cargomaster was the US Air Force’s only turboprop strategic airlifter.  Built by Douglas between 1956 and 1961, the plane served as the primary method to lift large and outsized cargo throughout the world during the 1960s.  The Cargomaster remained the primary strategic airlifter until the arrival of the C-5 Galaxy and C-141 Starlifter in the early 1970s.

The aircraft in this video was originally known as AF56-1999.  It retired as a MAC asset but was sold to the Cargomaster Corporation where it was registered as N199AB. According to Wikipedia, “the aircraft was never certificated by the FAA for civilian operation, and could only be flown as a government aircraft, mostly for the State of Alaska. N199AB was based at ANC and was flown as a transport until 2004, carrying cargo, such as pipeline sections. It also flew frontend loader trash trucks and heavy equipment to the Alaskan bush, i.e., Point Hope, Point Lay, Wainright, Barrow, Deadhorse, Barter Island, and Anatovich Pass in April 2006.”

The beautiful last flight video below was shot by famed videographer Gregory Sheffer who owns the production company INVERSION.  The video shows the last flight of N199AB that took place on August 29, 2008.  One of the crew members put together a great video and photo album showing photos of the last flight.  On his site, he recalls the final flight by saying:

C 133 N199AB arrived at Travis this morning only about 25 minutes late from filed flight plan ETA. The planned flyover before landing did not take place due to a wing overheat warning that occurred just as it arrived. Some observers noted puffs of black smoke coming from number three engine as the plane appeared over the Travis area.  As much as we C 133 fans were hoping for the magic sound and sight of a low level full power flyby, prudence dictated an immediate landing. The landing was perfect, the pilots greased it in.  The plane taxied through a shower from the fire trucks, then parked and was turned wide open for visitors including the cockpit area.

The aircraft is currently stored at the Travis Heritage Center at Travis Air Force Base in Fairfield, California.

BONUS:  Here’s video of the final landing that was shot from the approach end of runway 21R at Travis Air Force Base