named company had an aviation division that in the 1960s produced the very attractive Monarch-26s. The company purchased several
dozen surplus Invaders and moved them to their aviation facility at Hutchinson, Kansas. A number of Rock Island aircraft were
built up and they were basically stock looking but had a lengthened nose, passengers cabin with extra windows, and upgrade
cockpit and avionics.
Prototype serial number:
company purchased six surplus Invaders (ex-French AF aircraft that had served in Indochina) out of the Clark Field storage
facility. The original Invader airframe was extensively reconfigured with re-contouring and extensive re-skinning. In order
to provide for more interior cabin space, an new wing spar was designed to replace the original straight-through configuration
and new upper and lower fuselage structures were extended from the rear spar to the fin root fillet. The new cabin could accommodate
up to six passengers in a low-density arrangement, and featured floor heating, a restroom, catering facilities, and panoramic
windows. There was an airstair door on the rear starboard side. The extended nose was 30 inches longer than the original.
Because of a fear of wing failures, the Rock Island engineers decided not to add wingtip fuel tanks, but added additional
fuel cells in the outer wing panels, which raised the total fuel capacity to 1012 US gallons. The cockpit was fitted with
dual controls, new instrument and overhead panels, and "metalized" double-paned cockpit canopies.
Anticipating more orders, Rock Island acquired 30 more surplus
Invader airframes, this time from storage at Davis Monthan AFB. However, the Monarch had only limited success in the corporate
aircraft marketplace, with only 4 being completed, including three in-house.
The Consort 26, was designed for research and development
purposes. All military equipment was removed, the bomb bay was sealed up, and a reinforced floor was added. Three Invader
airframes were modified in this way and were sold or leased to aerospace companies as platforms for system development programs.
serial number: 44-34121