Published October 20, 2008
The Kentucky Air National Guard Mini C-130 is a scale replica of its airborne big sister, the C-130 Hercules cargo aircraft flown by the men and women of the Louisville-based 123rd Airlift Wing.
The Mini C-130 isn't capable of flight, but its realistic sheet-metal and steel-frame construction features working propellers, a functional cargo door, a UHF radio, a high-power stereo system and seating for up to a dozen passengers.
The replica was built from scratch by the airmen of the Kentucky Air Guard's 123rd Maintenance Squadron, using the chassis of a three-wheeled Cushman utility cart as its foundation. It is powered by a 27-horsepower gasoline motor
and can reach speeds of up to 20 mph.
The replica is a big hit with children, who've eagerly lined up to take "test flights" during its many appearances at civic functions across Kentucky and Southern Indiana in the past few months. The Mini C-130 made it public debut during the 2004 Kentucky Derby Festival parade, where it took top honors in the Specialty Unit category.