Curtiss-Wright C-113 Commando

The Curtis-Wright C-113 Commando was an unsuccessful test bed for a new General Electric turbo-prop engine, and was written off after an ground accident early in its test career.

The aircraft that became the C-113 was originally to have been completed as the XC-46C. However it was originally completed as the only one of three hundred C-46Gs that had been ordered to actually be completed, after an order for 300 examples was cancelled after VJ-Day. The C-46G had the fuselage of the C-46D and C-46F, with cargo doors on both sides of the fuselage, squared wing tips and a stepped windshield that had been developed on the XC-46B and used on the C-46E. It was powered by two 2,100hp R-2800-34W air cooled radial engines.

 After being completed the C-46G was flown to Curtiss’s Columbus factory to be used as a test bed for the 2,300 shaft horse power General Electric TG-100 turbo-prop engine. The new turbo-prop replaced the starboard engine, in what quickly proved to be a rather unsuccessful configuration. The two engines produced different amounts of power, accelerated at different rates and reacted differently to the throttle, making the aircraft almost uncontrollable. The test programme did at least begin, in October 1946, but soon afterwards the XC-113 was damaged in a ground accident, and it never actually flew with the turbo-prop engine. The TG-100 did take to the air in other aircraft – a modified Consolidated Vultee XP-81 and a modified XF2R-1, but in both cases the engine was mounted on the centre line.

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How to cite this article: Rickard, J (26 April 2021), Curtiss-Wright C-113 Commando , http://www.historyofwar.org/articles/weapons_curtiss-wright_C113.html

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