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Sole flying U.S. Constellation blows engine, may not fly again

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The Save a Connie folks have a big engine repair bill :
Officials of the Airline History Museum at the Wheeler Downtown Airport were devastated by the blowout, which occurred during routine maintenance checks on the ground.

Three cylinders in the No. 2 engine failed, spewing gallons of oil and fire that “stuck like napalm” to the plane’s metal skin, disfiguring the plane.

“It was a black, black day,” said Foe Geldersma, president of the Airline History Museum.

The engine failure meant scrubbing a visit to an air show last weekend in Rockford, Ill., and another scheduled for Labor Day weekend in St. Louis.

The nonprofit museum board and members are all volunteers, and many of them are former pilots. Rebuilding the Wright R3350 engine would cost more than $120,000 and wipe out their reserves.

The Airline History Museum in Kansas City could use some help here.