We all know the C-130 Hercules. This workhorse has been in our military for decades now. Since 1954, it served as a transport plane but over the years has proven to be much more useful than that, able to be modified for a variety of uses. Most notably, in our opinion, its AC version as a gunship is the most impressive. We’d say that those who experienced its power would confirm that, but they’re just not around to do so if you catch our drift.
In the early 70s, the United States Air Force released a request for an Advanced Medium STOL Transport plane which was in the same class as the C-130, but with actual short takeoff and landing (STOL) capability. Boeing jumped on the contract trying to boot Lockheed out of a contract. Lockheed didn’t lay down.
“It was definitely a face only a mother could love…”-YouTube Commenter
Although successful, the YC-14 Boeing came up with met all the requirements posed by the USAF, but in the end, it was just cheaper to upgrade and continue producing the already proven C-130. Boeing ended up building two prototypes which you can now see at the Pima Air & Space Museum and at the famous boneyard at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base.
The short clip below will tell you the idea behind the design and what Boeing aimed to do. And yes, it will explain the uncommon engine placement which turns out was a good solution to a common problem.