Home DC-3 C-47 Engines
Douglas DC-3 and C-47

All links on this page are listed purely for interest's sake and should not be construed as a recommendation.
The Internet provides a huge database detailing the types of engines used by the Douglas DC-3 and C-47 aircraft so there is little point in going into the engine details on this website when the manufactueres themselves have fabulous and informative websites detailing the various engines used.
Some information is provided below to assist with searching for engine information.
The DC-3 and C-47 aircraft were mostly powered by Pratt & Whitney or Wright engines.
The original civilian DC-3 aircraft used Curtiss-Wright R-1820 Cyclone engines.
Later aircraft used the Pratt & Whiney R-1830 Twin Wasp

Engine Curtis-Wright R-1820

Curtiss-Wright R-1820


Curtiss-Wright's first decade, 1929-1938, saw the seeds of its corporate evolution being sown. The Company made advances in aircraft engines. In its engine development of the 1930's, Curtiss-Wright pioneered such innovations as forged aluminum pistons, the dynamic damper which absorbed crankshaft vibration, finned cylinder heads for cooling, and nitrided cylinder barrels, a metallurgical process which gave vastly improved wear resistance and life. Curtiss-Wright pioneered the concepts of air-cooled engines as well as the radial engine. By the end of the decade, Curtiss-Wright engineers had pushed output per engine above the 1,000 horsepower mark. The Cyclone Engine powered the venerable Douglas DC-3 transport, a potent combination that opened up the United States Airline Transportation System before World War II.


Image and text courtesy: Curtiss-Wright


Engine Pratt and Whitney R-1830 twin wasp
Pratt & Whitney R-1830 Twin Wasp
In the early 1930s, work started on twin-row configurations of the three Pratt & Whitney radial piston engines then in production. By Pratt & Whitney's tenth anniversary, it was making engines that were making history.
The Twin Wasp was the first twin-row design. Displacing 1,830 cubic inches, it delivered up to 1,350 horsepower and featured a new multilayered master rod bearing to withstand stresses at higher ratings. It performed magnificently and was selected to power fighters, bombers and transports. Partly due to the urgency of World War II, 173,618 engines were produced.
Displacement: 1,830 cubic inches
Revolutions per minute: 2,400-2,700
Weight: 1,162-1,467 pounds
First run: 1931
First flight: 1931
Production years: 1932-1951
Engines produced: 173,618
Image and text courtesy: Pratt & Whitney
Some examples of other engines used are:
Pratt & Whitney R-2000 radial
Rolls-Royce Dart turbine
Armstrong Siddeley Mamba turbine (The Mamba was the first turboprop engine to power the DC-3)
Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6 turbine

Some companies specialising in the DC-3/C-47 Turbo Prop conversion:
Some Radial Engine overhaul companies

Aero Accessories, Inc. San Antonio, Texas

Aero Recip Canada Winnipeg, Canada

Anderson Aeromotive North Central Idaho

Covington Aircraft Engines, Inc. Okmulgee, Oklahoma

Holloway Engineering Quincy, California

J & R Engine Service Miami, Florida

Phoebus Apollo Johannesburg, South Africa

Poole Industries Avon Park, Florida

Precision Engines Everett, Washington

Radial Engine Specialities Fredericksburg, Texas

Radial Engines Limited Guthrie, Oklahoma

Superior Millennium Aircraft Engines Johannesburg, South Africa




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