Sponsor Message:
Travel Polls & Prefs Forum
My Starred Topics | Profile | New Topic | Forum Index | Help | Search 
What Was It Like To Fly In A Viscount?  
User currently offlineozark1 From United States of America, joined Mar 2006, 449 posts, RR: 0
Posted (3 years 20 hours ago) and read 9734 times:

I have always considered the Viscount one of my favorite airplanes. I can just imagine sitting looking out one of those windows as a kid. I remember the bigger the window, the more I liked the airplane. I loved the Electra and the Convair 580, and preferred the DC8 to the 707 due to the larger window. But I never got to experience a Viscount. Was it a lot quieter on the inside than it was being subjected to the high whine of the turbines on the outside? Could it be comparable to an Electra or 580/600 in noise level in the cabin? I remember the vibration in the Electra and was wondering if, it was as noticeable. I grew up in ELP and was mesmerized by the Golden Tailed ones what would come and go. I know in the cockpit they could be sluggish and truck like, at least from what i've read. Any memories would be appreciated.
Well ok I guess I ALMOST flew in a Viscount when I flew in an Ozark FH227---those windows and then being able to watch the gear fall! Maybe that's even better than the V!

35 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineVV701 From United Kingdom, joined Aug 2005, 7475 posts, RR: 17
Reply 1, posted (3 years 19 hours ago) and read 9683 times:

What was it like to fly in a Viscount? Great!

This video will give those who were never fortunate enough to fly in a Viscount some idea of just how big the windows were:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hZIJINsKiGo

The cabin on BEA';s Viscounts included some backward facing seats with a table between them and the next row of forward facing seats. This meant you could have all the advantages of an aisle seat with an uninterrupted view out of the adjacent cabin windows particularly on the left side of the aircraft where, with the 3-2 seat arrangement, there was no centre row..

I cannot answer the questions on the Electra and Convair 580 as back in those days I would always choose to fly in the Viscount wherever possible. But this video may give you some appreciation of cabin noise levels, (Take-off starts at about 6' 50" into the video):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?NR=1&v=3fuDyWAD_lw


User currently offlinetype-rated From United States of America, joined Sep 1999, 4992 posts, RR: 19
Reply 2, posted (3 years 17 hours ago) and read 9479 times:

Those Dart engines seemed much smoother than the engines that were in the Electra or Convair 580. The 580 engines had a very unique whistling sound to them. The Viscount engines seem quieter.


Fly North Central Airlines..The route of the Northliners!
User currently offlinee38 From United States of America, joined May 2008, 337 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (3 years 17 hours ago) and read 9475 times:

ozark1, it was magnificent. I don't think there has been, or ever will be, an airplane as graceful or exotic as the Viscount.
I only had the opportunity to travel aboard Viscounts twice--in the summer of 1966. I flew aboard Continental flight 288 from Midland/Odessa (MAF) to Dallas Love Field (DAL) with a stop at Fort Worth Greater Southwest International Airport (GSW). At Dallas Love Field Continental parked at Gate 26 on the Red Concourse. It's not there anymore, of course, but it is in the general area where Continental and Delta park today (I think they are currently gates 29, 30, 31, and 32). The return was a few days later--DAL to MAF nonstop. These were of course Continental's Viscount IIs (I think the official designation was Viscount 812).

On Continental's Viscount's, the Coach cabin was forward and was divided into two cabins: directly behind the forward entry door was a small coach cabin consisting of eight seats--the first row faced aft and the second row faced forward (in a 2-2 configuration). Behind this cabin was a coat closet on one side of the aisle and a lavatory on the other side of the aisle. Aft of the closet and lavatory was a standard coach cabin of approximately 5 rows in a 2-3 configuration (facing forward). Finally, behind the coach cabin was the first class cabin consisting of 5 rows in a 2-2 configuration. If you add all this up the seating capacity of the aircraft was 53. The crew on both of these flights consisted of two pilots and two stewardesses (that was what Continental called their flight attendants in 1966 and it is OK to state that here--it is not meant to be negative or derogatory--it was a professional, respectable career field)

I don't recall traveling aboard other aircraft where the first class cabin was in the back of the aircraft.

In the back of the aircraft, behind the first class seats was the galley.

Here are a few observations:

The view out those big oval windows was outstanding. I cannot think of another aircraft that provided a view as spectacular as you had on the Viscount.

On one flight I sat in the standard coach cabin (second cabin); on the other flight my family and I sat in the forward coach cabin. I do not recall either area being particularly loud nor did it vibrate excessively. I do remember the distinctive whine of those Rolls Royce dart engines. That was superb. Also, with the big RR stamped on the engines, you knew the powerplants would be 100 percent reliable. That was comforting!

On both flights, a hot meal was served (the flying time on this routing was about 1 hour 15 minutes). As I recall, there were no tray tables on the seats in front. The stewardesses passed out very firm pillows to each passenger and then you balanced the tray on your lap upon the pillow. The hot meals were roast beef, mashed potatoes, mixed vegetables, a roll with butter, a small piece of cake, and a beverage of your choice.

Overall, the Viscount was a perfect aircraft (at least that's my opinion!)

e38


User currently offlinegemuser From Australia, joined Nov 2003, 5640 posts, RR: 6
Reply 4, posted (3 years 15 hours ago) and read 9342 times:

Quoting e38 (Reply 3):
I don't recall traveling aboard other aircraft where the first class cabin was in the back of the aircraft.

At least one ANA (Australian National Airways) DC-6 had a 1st class lounge in the rear of the cabin with a semi-circular seating arrangement at the very back (maybe exBCPA?)

Gemuser



DC23468910;B72172273373G73873H74374475275376377L77W;A319 320321332333343;BAe146;C402;DHC6;F27;L188;MD80MD85
User currently offlineJackbr From Australia, joined Dec 2009, 666 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (3 years 14 hours ago) and read 9262 times:

Most, if not all, prop liners had First Class at the rear of the aircraft - simply because it is quieter at the rear on a prop. On a jet, it quiter at the front. Qantas Electra's had F class at the rear, as did BOAC Britannias.

When Continental's first Viscounts were delivered, there was a small lounge area at the rear of the aircraft.


User currently offlinePanHAM From Germany, joined May 2005, 9330 posts, RR: 29
Reply 6, posted (3 years 14 hours ago) and read 9222 times:

"Great" was what came up first when I saw the title.

I was lucky to have been on the Viscounts of BEA and Lufthansa and the BEA Vanguards as well. The sound of the engines, the procedure of starting the engines with the props picking up speed. Back then it was much more exciting to fly than with today's modern airliners. I would not want to miss a single flight on these machines, which included the Electra, the Convair 580 and even 4 segements on the CL44 freighter.

Too bad Lufthansa or British did not preserve one in flying condition. The Viscount would have deserved it.



E's passed on! That parrot is no more! He has ceased to be! E's expired and gone to meet 'is maker!
User currently offlinemariner From New Zealand, joined Nov 2001, 25152 posts, RR: 85
Reply 7, posted (3 years 13 hours ago) and read 9177 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Quoting gemuser (Reply 4):
At least one ANA (Australian National Airways) DC-6 had a 1st class lounge in the rear of the cabin with a semi-circular seating arrangement at the very back (maybe exBCPA?)

In the early 1950's, some of the BOAC Argonauts on which I flew had a similar arrangement. They also had first class at the back and in the middle and up the front because there was no coach/economy class then.

I was quite shocked the first time I flew on an Argonaut with coach/economy - 1954 or '55?  

As to the Viscount, I always found it a smooth and pleasant ride, and, like most others, I loved the big windows.

mariner



aeternum nauta
User currently offlineghYHZ From Canada, joined Feb 2008, 257 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (3 years 9 hours ago) and read 8884 times:

Quoting e38 (Reply 3):
The view out those big oval windows was outstanding. I cannot think of another aircraft that provided a view as spectacular as you had on the Viscount.

As a Railfan too, I've heard the Viscount refered to as the "Dome Car" of the skies!

The Viscount was the first plane I flew on as a kid. Trans-Canada Airlines had a large fleet and they were everywhere from Torbay YYT to Pat Bay YYJ.


User currently offlineOzarkD9S From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 5073 posts, RR: 21
Reply 9, posted (3 years 8 hours ago) and read 8805 times:

I flew one in '73 or '74 LHR-NCL, return was a Trident. The same trip we went from LHR onwards to ORY on a Caravelle so that was 3 Europlanes in one trip. Was 8 or 9 y/o at the time. I remember the Viscount had curtains on the windows, not shades and to this date was the only 4 engined turboprop I've flown on. We flew fairly low offering me great views of the English countryside. I don't recall much else about the particulars of that flight as my head was pressed against the window for most of the flight!


Next Up: STL-LGA-RIC-ATL-STL
User currently offlineshankly From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2000, 1541 posts, RR: 1
Reply 10, posted (3 years 8 hours ago) and read 8792 times:

It is one of the two planes that started it all for me, the other being its Vickers stablemate the VC10. Regrettably I never actually flew either

Have an uncle who had a pal who was a British Midland Airways pilot. As a youngster (9-12yrs old) I would spend a week with my uncle in the Midlands and his pilot friend would always take me to the BMA maintenance hanger at East Midland Airport (Castle Donnington), which was heaven for a kid nuts on planes.

Can still recall sitting in the cockpits of the Viscounts and Heralds, but it was the Viscount that always impressed. Such a roomy cabin and those magnificent windows noted by all above.

Growing up in the South East of England my spotting trips revolved around my local airports of Stansted, Southend and Luton and of course big days out at Heathrow. Viscounts were very much part of the landscape at all these airports and I can still recall the unique wind up of the wonderful RR Dart...BAF, BMA, BA, Jersey European, Intra, Swedair and of course the bright red Post Office freighters. The Turkish Air Force Visounts were also regular maintenance visitors

Luckily have the Brooklands museum close by and having joined as a Trust member often pop in to marvel at the amazing airliners produced by the Vickers Company



L1011 - P F M
User currently offlinefreakyrat From United States of America, joined Aug 2008, 853 posts, RR: 1
Reply 11, posted (3 years 8 hours ago) and read 8698 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

I flew on them between ORD and SBN many times. They were pretty quick. The windows were big. Rode on one flight with Danny Thomas who was going from ORD-FWA.

User currently offlinenra-3b From United States of America, joined Oct 2000, 166 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (3 years 5 hours ago) and read 8543 times:

My first airline flight was in 1966, aboard a Continental Viscount, DEN-MKC-STL. This was a Continental-Braniff interchange flight, with the flight crew swapping out at MKC. I was traveling military standby, and since there were no first class passengers, the cabin crew told me to have a seat up front. Not a bad way to be introduced to airline flying........
I was amazed by the BIG windows. The first class section on that ship was two facing rows of seats. I was served a meal on both legs and had my own stewardess. (This was before some brainiac thought up "flight attendant".) This service only lasted another year or so after that, and the CO DEN-MKC service was taken over by a wonderfully noisy DC-9 shorty, with the occasional 707-720 night flight. Ahh-good times  

Cheers,
Bob


User currently offlineCV880 From United States of America, joined Mar 2007, 1130 posts, RR: 2
Reply 13, posted (3 years 4 hours ago) and read 8464 times:

I used to fly both EA Electras and United Viscounts from RDU to CLT when I was a student at UNC (a few decades ago). The fares were cheap (youth/student). The Viscount was a smooth ride and the whine of the RR Engines was like music. The Electra was in a different league, a bit noisy, and IIRC, had 1st class in the rear of the aircraft.

A big bonus--UA went RDU-CLT via GSO, so the two takeoffs/landings was well worth the fare. The Viscount along with EA's B720 and DL's 880's were my planes of choice back in the 60's.


User currently offlineL1011 From United States of America, joined May 1999, 1674 posts, RR: 9
Reply 14, posted (3 years 4 hours ago) and read 8405 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

I flew on Lufthansa's Viscount 814s, along with other Viscounts on BEA, Channel Airways, Aer Lingus, and Austrian Airlines. I loved the big windows, but not all seat rows were lined up with the windows. Thank goodness they had open seating, so that I could choose a row with comfortable window alignment. I remember that the Channel Airlines Viscount had seatbacks that were so thin that if I leaned comfortably back in my seat, the tray table for the seat behind me would pop open. Although I loved the Viscount, I preferred KLM's Electras. The Electra had proper window alignment on all rows, and it seemed stronger and sturdier than the Viscount.

Bob Bradley



Fly Eastern's Golden Falcon DC-7B
User currently offlineisitsafenow From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 4984 posts, RR: 23
Reply 15, posted (3 years 2 hours ago) and read 8089 times:

Quoting e38 (Reply 3):
I don't recall traveling aboard other aircraft where the first class cabin was in the back of the aircraft.

BN and AA Electra....TWA Super Connies.

Quoting e38 (Reply 3):
The view out those big oval windows was outstanding. I

To give you an idea how big the oval windows were, sit down and look at your knee. That's how far
they came down.....compare that with a 737 or A319...nope, not even close.
safe



If two people agree on EVERYTHING, then one isn't necessary.
User currently offlinegranite From UK - Scotland, joined May 1999, 5568 posts, RR: 64
Reply 16, posted (3 years ago) and read 7176 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Hello

I have flown on G-CSZB and took video of engine start up, in flight etc. Windows were huge!


View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Gary Watt



Really need to find a way to transfer old camcorder tape to PC then upload to YouTube.

Regards

Gary Watt - Granite
Airliners.net Head Screener
www.airliners.net
http://twitter.com/airliners_net


User currently offlineKELPkid From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 6372 posts, RR: 3
Reply 17, posted (3 years ago) and read 7011 times:

Quoting ozark1 (Thread starter):
I grew up in ELP and was mesmerized by the Golden Tailed ones what would come and go. I know in the cockpit they could be sluggish and truck like, at least from what i've read.

You know, then, too, that the city of El Paso named a major street near the airport Viscount drive   Kind of fits in with the aircraft manufacturer names for streets near the airport: Boeing, Convair, etc.



Celebrating the birth of KELPkidJR on August 5, 2009 :-)
User currently offlineKELPkid From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 6372 posts, RR: 3
Reply 18, posted (3 years ago) and read 6976 times:

Quoting type-rated (Reply 2):
Those Dart engines seemed much smoother than the engines that were in the Electra or Convair 580. The 580 engines had a very unique whistling sound to them. The Viscount engines seem quieter.

One can only hope! I have never witnessed a Viscount in operation, but as a lineboy, I refuelled a few CV 580's...marshalling them in definitely required hearing protection, much worse than a Lear 24/25, even... I swear my ears were ringing afterwards despite wearing 24DB hearing protectors (basically, David Clark headsets without speakers in them)   



Celebrating the birth of KELPkidJR on August 5, 2009 :-)
User currently offlineViscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 25170 posts, RR: 22
Reply 19, posted (3 years ago) and read 6793 times:

Quoting type-rated (Reply 2):
Those Dart engines seemed much smoother than the engines that were in the Electra or Convair 580. The 580 engines had a very unique whistling sound to them. The Viscount engines seem quieter.

Agree, the Viscount was very smooth and quiet on the inside. I made my very first flight when I was about 8 or 9 on a Trans-Canada Air Lines Viscount from Edmonton (YXD airport then, near the city center, before YEG was built) to YYC. That was soon after TCA became the first carrier in North America to operate turbine-powered aircraft. I probably made at least a dozen more flights on Viscounts. The huge windows were the best feature.

Quoting e38 (Reply 3):
I don't recall traveling aboard other aircraft where the first class cabin was in the back of the aircraft.

All propeller aircraft operating in 2-class configurations in those days had first class at the back, the quietest part of the cabin, unlike jets.


User currently offlineYULWinterSkies From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 2178 posts, RR: 5
Reply 20, posted (3 years ago) and read 6676 times:

Quoting e38 (Reply 3):
On both flights, a hot meal was served (the flying time on this routing was about 1 hour 15 minutes). As I recall, there were no tray tables on the seats in front. The stewardesses passed out very firm pillows to each passenger and then you balanced the tray on your lap upon the pillow. The hot meals were roast beef, mashed potatoes, mixed vegetables, a roll with butter, a small piece of cake, and a beverage of your choice.

Yeah great sure, fair enough! Do you also recall how much the airfare was, corrected in today's dollars?



When I doubt... go running!
User currently offlineViscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 25170 posts, RR: 22
Reply 21, posted (2 years 12 months 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 6604 times:

Quoting e38 (Reply 3):
As I recall, there were no tray tables on the seats in front. The stewardesses passed out very firm pillows to each passenger and then you balanced the tray on your lap upon the pillow.

I expect CO Viscounts, which were the later and slightly stretched 800 series, had tray tables. Even TCA's earlier Viscount 724/757s that went into service in 1955 had fold-down tray tables, their first aircraft type with that feature (except seats in the first row where the tables plugged into holes in the armrests).


User currently offlinetonyban From United States of America, joined Jun 2006, 343 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (2 years 12 months 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 6558 times:

In 1979 after completing my 'O' level exams, my friends and I took a weekend holiday to Jersey from LHR.
We flew in a Viscount and I still remember to this day, the absolute joy in flying in this beauty. Our return journey was in Trident 3 which was also an experience in itself.
Thanks for reminding me    of those memories !


User currently offlineKarlB737 From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 3105 posts, RR: 10
Reply 23, posted (2 years 12 months 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 6506 times:

Quoting ozark1 (Thread starter):
Was it a lot quieter on the inside than it was being subjected to the high whine

I rode on a Capital Airlines Viscount from TVC to YIP in 1957. All I remember about that ride was the pain in my ears from the high pitched whine.


User currently offlinemilesrich From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 1995 posts, RR: 6
Reply 24, posted (2 years 12 months 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 6049 times:

Quoting e38 (Reply 3):
I don't recall traveling aboard other aircraft where the first class cabin was in the back of the aircraft.

As was stated above, all propeller aircraft that had two class configuration had first class in the rear as that was the quietest part of the aircraft, except Braniff's Electra's which had a first class lounge foward, coach in the middle in the main cabin, and FC in the rear.

I flew on quite a few United Viscounts, between MLI and ORD/MDW. UA's Viscount 745D's had drop down tray tables, and were configured in all First Class cabin with 44 seats in 2-2. On the ramp, the Viscount was like listening to two F-27's or FH-227B's at the same time. The video was very good and brought back lots of memories. The ride was almost vibration free, unlike the pistons, and I preferred riding in the Viscount to the Fairchild aircraft.


25 SNNLHR : The viscount is an aircraft I remember with affection. I remember the large windows however as they aged, the windows hazed a bit and it wasn't easy s
26 BlackandWhite : In the 60/70s the Viscount was the workhorse of the BEA/BA Highlands and Islands service,with flts to BFS and seasonally to JER and GCI ex GLA. I flew
27 isitsafenow : Karl, you must of sat by the engines or just ahead of them. I alway sat in either the last or next to last row. It was quieter back there........Cros
28 ozark1 : I cannot tell you how appreciative I am of everyone taking the time to respond to me! Such an interesting array of comments. I really enjoyed looking
29 Post contains images BAViscount : Well I've said it in threads before and I'll say it again now, my first ever flight was on a BA Viscount (sound familiar?) LHR-GCI in August 1979. I h
30 e38 : Quoting isitsafenow (Reply 27), "What I don't remember is did the Viscount have a three man cockpit crew or a two man cockpit crew?" Michael, as I rem
31 longhauler : The first time I flew in a Viscount was in the late 1960s, when Air Canada had just configured the aircraft to all Y class, 48 seats, with 12 rows of
32 Post contains links Viscount724 : The Viscount had a single spar wing design which I believe required replacement of the spar after a certain number of hours which was a major job. Th
33 longhauler : TCA / Air Canada had only the three configurations you mentioned. The original 44F layout with 11 rows, then the dual class 39Y12F layout with 11 row
34 Post contains links Viscount724 : That was also my understanding, but there was a reference in a 2006 thread to an all-Y configuration with 54 seats which I had never heard of. It's i
35 longhauler : Yes, I recall that thread. I looked at Pilot Operating Manuals for the TCA Viscount from 1957, 1963 and 1970 there is no reference to a 54Y layout. A
Top Of Page
Forum Index

This topic is archived and can not be replied to any more.

Printer friendly format

Similar topics:More similar topics...
How Was It Like, To Fly On A DL DC10? posted Tue Apr 27 2010 13:27:57 by 747400sp
How Was It Like To Fly On PSA Or Air Cal? posted Tue Feb 23 2010 16:20:16 by 747400sp
What Is It Like To Be Based In EWR? posted Wed Jul 25 2007 17:53:30 by KLM672
What Was It Like Flying SWA's "TranStar"? posted Wed Oct 6 2010 13:46:55 by mrskyguy
What Was It Like Flying Aboard The L-188? posted Mon Sep 13 2010 20:20:15 by mrskyguy
What Would You Like To See In A F/a Trip Report? posted Fri Jul 6 2007 01:27:51 by FLY764
What Aircraft Would You Most Like To Fly On? posted Wed Dec 20 2006 16:23:16 by BigOrange
What Aircraft Would You Most Like To Fly? posted Tue Sep 7 2004 20:41:35 by UTA_flyingHIGH
What's The Best Time To Fly ORD To PVG? posted Sat Apr 3 2010 15:17:16 by WROORD
Where To Fly In Florida For The Day? Advise! posted Thu Sep 24 2009 16:42:01 by 797