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Topic: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: SpaceshipDC10
Posted 2013-02-08 15:08:50 and read 12545 times.

On Saturday February 9th, 1963, Boeing 727-22 N7001U took off from Renton for the type's maiden flight. After 1 hour 59 minutes in the air, the aircraft returned to terra firma when it landed at Paine Field. Less than nine months later, deliveries to launch customers began with N7004U for United Airlines on October 29th and N8102N Eastern Airlines on November 15th. It’s the Miami-based carrier that first began services with the new trijets by replacing the regular Lockheed Electra on the MIA-PHL-DCA route on February 1st, 1964.

Below are the pictures of the first and second 727 built. The latter, depicting Boeing's livery, was kept by the manufacturer as a demonstrator until it was scrapped in 1978, while the first remained active with United Airlines from its delivery in 1964 till its retirement in January 1991. Since then, it's been part of the Museum of Flight at Everett.


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Photo © Bob Garrard
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Photo © Ralf Manteufel



In all,1832 (including the demonstrator) of these narrow-body trijets were built between 1962 and 1984 in four different variants. The 727has been the first commercial jetliner to reach the 1,000th delivery mark, in December 1973, with N474DA of Delta Airlines.

Fifty years after that historical day, many 727 are still plying the skies, mainly as cargo haulers or as private jets.

For more about the 727 see:

Boeing 727 family;

Boeing 727 Prototype-"First Flights" video;

and a thirteen parts report published in Flight International dated 9 May 1963:

1; 2; 3; 4; 5; 6; 7; 8; 9; 10; 11; 12; 13

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: CRJ900
Posted 2013-02-08 15:30:31 and read 12479 times.

The B727 - fantastic airplane. A pity they disappeared so quickly in the early 2000s, suddenly they were all over the hill from being important workhorses just a few years earlier.

Interesting that they chose to have the galley halfway down the cabin on the B727-100 but actually a great idea, made a natural separation between First and economy class.

I only flew as a passenger on Sterling Airways B727-200Adv with 182 seats, and I have colleagues who were pilots and cabin crew on the very same aircraft. They loved the B727 and I can understand why.

I raise my glass to the B727 - an aircraft to remember and respect  

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: Viscount724
Posted 2013-02-08 15:31:55 and read 12471 times.

There's another similar current thread. Perhaps it would make sense to add this to the other thread to keep it all together?
Boeing 727 Launch (by baileyncreme Jan 29 2013 in Civil Aviation)?threadid=5675497&searchid=5677908&s=Boeing+727#ID5677908

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: 727LOVER
Posted 2013-02-08 15:34:25 and read 12451 times.

Dangit!!!!! I had MY thread all ready to go tomorrow.  

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: SpaceshipDC10
Posted 2013-02-08 15:52:42 and read 12378 times.

Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 2):
There's another similar current thread. Perhaps it would make sense to add this to the other thread to keep it all together?

I thought about it, but the thread is more about technical problems with the aircraft than a reason to celebrate an achievement.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: rwy04lga
Posted 2013-02-08 15:56:33 and read 12353 times.

Tomorrow, February 9th, is also the 44th anniversary of the 747's first flight. Both the 727 and 747 made their first flights on February 9th, albeit 6 years apart.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: Viscount724
Posted 2013-02-08 15:58:41 and read 12346 times.

Quoting CRJ900 (Reply 1):
Interesting that they chose to have the galley halfway down the cabin on the B727-100 but actually a great idea, made a natural separation between First and economy class.

I think it was a bad idea. It complicated reconfigurations as very few carriers needed such a large F class cabin on the typical routes operated by the 721. Having to split the foward cabin ahead of the galley into 2 or 3 rows of F and 2 or 3 rows of Y wasn't as efficient as having the entire cabin to work with as on the 722. The seats directly opposite the galley also weren't very nice with the cabin crew working in the galley just across the aisle.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: longhauler
Posted 2013-02-08 16:24:29 and read 12240 times.

Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 6):
It complicated reconfigurations as very few carriers needed such a large F class cabin on the typical routes operated by the 721.

That seemed to be common with the era and earlier.

It is almost like no one thought about the consequences of fixed galley placement. Look at the DC-6 and DC-7,and TCA's DC-4M and Viscount ... passengers actually boarded the aircraft right into the galley! Or when there was a mixed F and Y cabin on the DC-7, the galley was in the middle of the F cabin, and Y passengers were served through the F cabin.

But you are right, the galley placement of the B727-100 was a perfect F/Y divider, as long as that is the configuration you wanted, otherwise it was very cumbersome. That is why I liked the door/cabin layout of the L1011 over the DC-10. With the DC-10, the forward cabin almost had to be F, where the large forward cabin of the L1011 allowed a bulkhead divider in the configuration the airline wanted.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: rsmith6621a
Posted 2013-02-08 16:37:48 and read 12208 times.

My Dad helped build both of those. He worked on the wing-line and the rear air stairs on both of those aircraft.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: AeroWesty
Posted 2013-02-08 16:45:25 and read 12160 times.

I honestly wish that the 727 had been the Boeing narrowbody to have gone on to be NG'd and MAX'd rather than the 737. Always enjoyed flying the 3-holer with the T-tail, and feel fortunate to have flown several of the -100s while they were still somewhat common in commercial service.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: bohica
Posted 2013-02-08 20:27:42 and read 11833 times.

Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 6):
Quoting CRJ900 (Reply 1):
Interesting that they chose to have the galley halfway down the cabin on the B727-100 but actually a great idea, made a natural separation between First and economy class.

I think it was a bad idea. It complicated reconfigurations as very few carriers needed such a large F class cabin on the typical routes operated by the 721. Having to split the foward cabin ahead of the galley into 2 or 3 rows of F and 2 or 3 rows of Y wasn't as efficient as having the entire cabin to work with as on the 722. The seats directly opposite the galley also weren't very nice with the cabin crew working in the galley just across the aisle.

From a ground handling point of view it was horrible. There was not enough room on the ramp for a catering truck and a fuel truck at the same time. The fuel hookups and fueling panel was on the right wing about a third of the way outboard from the fuselage. That and the location of the galley door meant that you couldn't have a fuel truck and a catering truck servicing the plane at the same time.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: yyz717
Posted 2013-02-08 20:57:39 and read 11768 times.

For spotters of a certain age (such as me), the 722 was so dominant and omni-present -- it seemed 25 years ago that it would always dominate the skies. Spotting a 722 in 1968, or 1978, or 1988, or even 1998 was simply....boring.

Now....a rare 722 arrival or departure makes me stop and stare.

Anyone remember the proposed stretched 727-300 offered to UA in (about) 1976/77?

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: BMI727
Posted 2013-02-08 21:46:06 and read 11697 times.

Quoting yyz717 (Reply 11):
Now....a rare 722 arrival or departure makes me stop and stare.

You don't have a choice since they're so damn loud. Once I was in St. Louis and heard an especially loud, low bypass plane and turned around expecting to see an F-15 but it was just a 727 freighter.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: SurfandSnow
Posted 2013-02-08 22:07:10 and read 11657 times.

Yes, I remember the 727 well. I personally flew the type on UA, AA, and NW, though I grew up seeing all kinds of UA 727 flights out of ORD. I'll also never forget a 7th grade trip to SJO in 2000 - we took UA's ORD-MEX-SJO flight there and back on the A320, but pulled up right next to the beautiful MX 727 down in SJO...

On NW, I rode the 727 on DTW-YYZ, which dropped us off in the decrepit old YYZ Terminal 1. How times have changed, what with the state of the art YYZ Terminal 1 and the DTW-YYZ route now hosting nothing but 50 seat RJs from DL...

On AA, I rode the 727 on MIA-RDU, which dropped us off in a very spartan/underutilized Terminal C that ultimately gave way to the state of the art Terminal 2. I'll never forget landing at RDU with about a foot of snow on the ground (it is quite rare for RDU to get snow, and very rare for it to get that much) and the captain exclaiming "hey folks, that's NOT the beach out there!". The 727s were quite a rare sight at AA's ORD hub by the late 90s, but MIA was a 727 haven into the early 2000s, which I'm pretty sure is when we took the flight.

On UA, I certainly remember riding the 727 on the ORD-YYZ route as late as 2001, and I'm pretty sure I rode the type on several other routes as well like ORD-RSW and ORD-MCO. I remember they even flew the 727 from ORD all the way out to LAS!

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: milesrich
Posted 2013-02-08 22:28:13 and read 11610 times.

Quoting SpaceshipDC10 (Thread starter):
It’s the Miami-based carrier that first began services with the new trijets by replacing the regular Lockheed Electra on the MIA-PHL-DCA route on February 1st, 1964.

This cannot be. DCA did not get 727 service or any other jet service until over two years later.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: rwessel
Posted 2013-02-09 00:07:55 and read 11476 times.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 12):
You don't have a choice since they're so damn loud. Once I was in St. Louis and heard an especially loud, low bypass plane and turned around expecting to see an F-15 but it was just a 727 freighter.

And yet Eastern used to tag them Whisperliners or Whisperjets.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: BMI727
Posted 2013-02-09 00:22:54 and read 11445 times.

Quoting rwessel (Reply 15):
And yet Eastern used to tag them Whisperliners or Whisperjets.

Well to compare it to similar vintage technology, the new Porsche 911 better than doubles the horsepower of the original and cuts nearly four seconds off its 0-60 time. Technology marches on.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: SpaceshipDC10
Posted 2013-02-09 01:28:26 and read 11330 times.

Quoting yyz717 (Reply 11):
Anyone remember the proposed stretched 727-300 offered to UA in (about) 1976/77?

Yes, and it finally became a twin jet. I really wonder how successful the 727-300 would have been if it was launched.

Quoting yyz717 (Reply 11):
the 722 was so dominant and omni-present -- it seemed 25 years ago that it would always dominate the skies

Especially in North America where it lasted longer in passenger services.

Quoting milesrich (Reply 14):
This cannot be. DCA did not get 727 service or any other jet service until over two years later.

Indeed, it was IAD back then.

Quoting rwessel (Reply 15):
And yet Eastern used to tag them Whisperliners or Whisperjets.

Well, I believe it was more a comparision with propliners for potential passengers than anything else.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: Max Q
Posted 2013-02-09 02:14:07 and read 11097 times.

The B727 was the first jet I ever flew as a Pilot.


I really can't say enough about what a dream it was to fly.



Solid, built like a brick sh*house, you felt like it could handle anything and it could, it shrugged off turbulence like a hot knife through butter.


Stable, yet extremely responsive, the worse the weather the happier you were to be in it.
And fast, very fast, VMO of 380 Knots with an MMO of .92


I have taken it to .91 mach and it was completely unruffled.


Simply, a Pilots dream.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: na
Posted 2013-02-09 02:33:38 and read 10916 times.

Probably the prettiest short/mediumhaul plane in my eyes, its very long since I have seen one the last time. Are there still any active in Europe?
I have a ca. 1970 photo of me with a large beautiful Pan Am 727 model as a Christmas gift which I remember made some noise. And another photo where I built a Lego 727! Must have liked the plane as a kid!
I think the last time I flew on a 727 must have been in the late 80s, I remember a Tunisair flight to Tunisia and one or two to Berlin with Pan Am. Nothing afterwards, but until the late 90s I really didnt record my flights as it were the busiest business travel times of my life.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: jetjack74
Posted 2013-02-09 02:40:24 and read 10852 times.

It was my favourite aircraft in the NW fleet. I used to bid 727 trips exclusively because they always had great layovers in all the right places, MIA, ABQ, PHX, SAN, LAS, SRQ, FCA, BOI, and the list goes on and on. I came to flying at the near-end of its career, and like many plane-nuts, wished it had lasted abit longer, but 9-11 saw to that. It gave me a glimpse into the 1st-generation jet flying of the 707/727 glory years. A gorgeous plane with a great sound to it. Miss her.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: type-rated
Posted 2013-02-09 03:35:58 and read 10453 times.

Out of all the 727 trips I have made only about a handful or so were on the 727-100 series. It seemed that in the late 60's and on the -200 model was much more common. In the early 70's I flew mostly on BN 727's. On any of their -100's I never did see any seats directly across the aisle from from the center galley. There was a bulkhead on both sides of the aisle. They had 5 or 6 rows of F, then the galley and then Y. I think across the aisle from the galley was a coat closet or something similar.

Did NW every fly the -100 model or just the -200 model? I never did encounter a NW -100.

Quoting jetjack74 (Reply 20):
A gorgeous plane with a great sound to it

When those 3 engines spooled up you definitely knew you were going places. But at full load the plane seemed to eat up a lot of runway on takeoff.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: gemuser
Posted 2013-02-09 03:54:03 and read 10308 times.

[quote=type-rated,reply=21]But at full load the plane seemed to eat up a lot of runway on takeoff.[/]

Are you referring to the 200 version? The 100 had amazing short field performance, for its time, with triple slotted flaps, leading edge devices etc. With everything hanging out in the breeze it looked like the wing was falling apart!

Gemuser

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: SpaceshipDC10
Posted 2013-02-09 03:56:47 and read 10293 times.

Quoting jetjack74 (Reply 20):
Did NW every fly the -100 model or just the -200 model? I never did encounter a NW -100.

NW had -100 models in its fleet both -100 and -100C for which it was a launch customer.

http://www.geocities.com/aeromoe/fleets/nw.html

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: United_fan
Posted 2013-02-09 04:28:15 and read 10067 times.

Quoting SurfandSnow (Reply 13):
I remember they even flew the 727 from ORD all the way out to LAS!

I purposely booked that flight and flew it in Sep 1st 2001. They served omlettes in Y class,too . My last 727 flight was ATL-ROC on DL N8890Z March 9,2003. We recently lost the only 727 in ROC when Capitol Cargo switched to 757's.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: garpd
Posted 2013-02-09 06:10:34 and read 9660 times.

Something I prepared earlier:

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: ImperialEagle
Posted 2013-02-09 06:33:39 and read 9471 times.

Quoting rwessel (Reply 15):
Whisperjets

The -72's and the -9's. Well, if you were sitting up front they certainly were quiet especially at takeoff. They were called Whisperjets for that reason. Not because of what they sounded like outside of the aircraft. Beat the hell out of row 4 or 5 on a -7B at take-off power!  Wow!
Quoting type-rated (Reply 21):
But at full load the plane seemed to eat up a lot of runway on takeoff.

Oh yeah. A hot, murky, summer's afternoon at ATL would reveal a lot of scary looking departures!   

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: PC12Fan
Posted 2013-02-09 06:41:22 and read 9600 times.

Ah, the legendary three holer.   

We've posted shots of the first builts. It's only fair that the last builts are posted as well.

The very last one off the line:

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Photo © Royal S King



And the last passenger build:
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Photo © Michael Carter



Still has one of the sweetest lines in the air. IMHO, even rivaling the lines of newer birds like the G650 and Global Express. Especially in "formal suits".


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Photo © Bill Nelson
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Photo © Ron Peel

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: United_fan
Posted 2013-02-09 07:20:35 and read 9095 times.

Quoting garpd (Reply 25):


Oh yeah. A hot, murky, summer's afternoon at ATL would reveal a lot of scary looking departures!

I remember seeing and hearing Champion departing LAS in the summer . Lots of 'pops' and runway used.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: SpaceshipDC10
Posted 2013-02-09 07:28:12 and read 9043 times.

Quoting garpd (Reply 25):

Very nice job.   

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: lightsaber
Posted 2013-02-09 07:34:55 and read 9023 times.

An amazing feat for a plane that is pressurized!

My father was one of many who worked on the plane, albeit as a summer intern early in its flight testing (fixing a tripping circuit breaker issue by testing replacement breakers pre-EIS).

I have several good memories flying the 727. For some reason, it wasn't that common an aircraft for me to fly on, but every flight was enjoyable. I remember in 1999 flying on a chartered DL 727 that was in great shape! My best memories will be the flights on "Sir Turtle" to Grand Cayman.

I remember well when DL retired their fleet:
http://www.bizjournals.com/cincinnati/stories/2003/04/07/daily13.html

Partially as I worked at Pratt and we were coming up with solutions to use the JT8D cores for backup ground power; Which sold incredibly well in the "California power crisis and being from California I was thus given grief about our #1 customer base for Ex-DL 727s engines...

Quoting yyz717 (Reply 11):
Now....a rare 722 arrival or departure makes me stop and stare.

FedEx has enough of them.  
Quoting rwessel (Reply 15):
Quoting BMI727 (Reply 12):
You don't have a choice since they're so damn loud. Once I was in St. Louis and heard an especially loud, low bypass plane and turned around expecting to see an F-15 but it was just a 727 freighter.

And yet Eastern used to tag them Whisperliners or Whisperjets.

That was my thought. While inside they were very quiet, in particular in F (hence the Wisperjets moniker), outside they screamed. I love old planes, but not flying overhead daily. The hushkits help... only a little.


Lightsaber

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: einsteinboricua
Posted 2013-02-09 08:48:21 and read 8259 times.

I miss these birds in SJU. FedEx and Amerijet occasionally bring them, but it's very rare. AA, CO, and US all brought them to SJU, not to mention KP and the reincarnations of PA, and all the charters like MG, KW, and Planet Airways.

What I wouldn't give to fly in one again.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: longhauler
Posted 2013-02-09 08:56:32 and read 8189 times.

Quoting garpd (Reply 25):
Something I prepared earlier:

That's brilliant!
It would make a great flight bag sticker, and it reminds me how very handsome the B727 was/is.

I hope you don't mind, but I re-posted that on our pilot forum, as there are more than a few B727-100/200 drivers in our ranks!

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: type-rated
Posted 2013-02-09 09:01:29 and read 8148 times.

Quoting gemuser (Reply 22):
[quote=type-rated,reply=21]But at full load the plane seemed to eat up a lot of runway on takeoff.[/]

Are you referring to the 200 version?

Yes I was thinking of the -200 version.



Quoting United_fan (Reply 24):
Quoting SurfandSnow (Reply 13):
I remember they even flew the 727 from ORD all the way out to LAS!

I believe UA also flew them ORD-SFO and ORD-SJC.

Speaking of Champion Air, they used to fly these into HOU as charters and the planes were always immaculately clean. They looked as if they just had been painted.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: EMBQA
Posted 2013-02-09 09:10:07 and read 8049 times.

Pretty sure I flew on one of the last American Airlines 727 flight in mid 2001. It was BNA - DFW

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: tistpaa727
Posted 2013-02-09 09:38:26 and read 7778 times.

Fantastic, sleek plane. I remember flying these between St. Thomas and New York frequently on Pan Am as a young boy. Such great memories. Then the 757 (Eastern) and A300 (Pan Am) started to take over the 727 in St. Thomas - both great planes but the 727 was a unique experience.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: boeingrulz
Posted 2013-02-09 09:52:47 and read 7618 times.

I am also 50 years old this year. I have flown in the 727's of South African Airways and PanAm in the 70's and Alaska in the 80's. Spotting in Seattle at the old spotting park, I loved Delta's 727 takeoffs. You could feel the shock waves coming out of those turbojets. So many good memories.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: fanofjets
Posted 2013-02-09 09:53:48 and read 7614 times.

Quoting rwy04lga (Reply 5):
Tomorrow, February 9th, is also the 44th anniversary of the 747's first flight. Both the 727 and 747 made their first flights on February 9th, albeit 6 years apart.

Two iconic airplanes! I almost forgot about the Jumbo's first flight. But to stick to the topic, the Boeing 727 certainly deserves her accolades. I have flown in both short- and long-bodied versions - quite a few of them. My best and worst flights aboard tha aircraft were with USAir.

Back in the 1980s, USAir had quite a few ex-United veterans (-22 shorties). On approach to PIT, we flew right into a huge thunderstorm, and the airplane fell like a brick. At first, I was nervous, but I quickly realized I was aboard an exceptionally strong machine and felt very safe. I knew the old girl (she was getting on in years even back then) could handle the punishment. We made a good landing; when I entered the terminal, I took a look at the aircraft. (I still do that.) She seemed to look at me, maintining an air of total confridence.

In the early 1990s, the same airline was going through a bad spell - service was horrible (under the US Airways moniker, the airline has improved markedly, and I would certainly recommend them). The poor airplane was an ex-Piedmont machine, a -214 originally delivered to PSA). Wearing a cheesy hybrid scheme, there was as much primer on that bird as there was actual (faded) paint. The plane was just as much a mess inside and loaded to the gills with passengers and cargo. Over the Caribbean, there were terrible hissing noises; I thought the plane would de-pressurize any moment. Much to the credit of that airplane, I found out that my fears were unfounded; that ship would go on to fly cargo many years later. Yes, that three-holer was a tank!

Funny thing - the planes were so common in its many years of front-line airline service, getting one did not seem like a big deal. I wouldn't be surprised if 15 or so years from now, I would be saying the same thing about flying "another" Boeing 737 or Mad Dog.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: tb727
Posted 2013-02-09 10:03:29 and read 7504 times.

Quoting Max Q (Reply 18):
I really can't say enough about what a dream it was to fly.

Solid, built like a brick sh*house, you felt like it could handle anything and it could, it shrugged off turbulence like a hot knife through butter.

Stable, yet extremely responsive, the worse the weather the happier you were to be in it.
And fast, very fast, VMO of 380 Knots with an MMO of .92

I have taken it to .91 mach and it was completely unruffled.

Simply, a Pilots dream.

Amen to that!

After loving the airplane my whole life, it's very special to me that I may be one of the last pilots that will probably ever be typed in it. I just flew one into maintenance and, not knowing it at the time, it was the airplanes last flight. After over 35 years of faithful service, I would have at least done a missed approach and brought it back around the pattern one last time. It may be gone but her parts will help another one take to the skies once again so at least we have that going for us.

The 727: Checking Essential since 1963!

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: jc2354
Posted 2013-02-09 10:14:00 and read 7428 times.

Quoting Max Q (Reply 18):
The B727 was the first jet I ever flew as a Pilot.

Same with me. A lot of pilots had transition problems coming from the props (DC-7, Electra,etc), as well as a few 707 and DC-8 guys. It was a very complicated plane for these folks, they basically had to learn a brand new aeronautics theory, especially with the complicated flaps and the rapid sink rate. In my mid 20s, I was like a kid in a corvette!

Later in my career, I would transition to the 737, and end my career on the 757. And for me, the 727 was the ultimate. Unless you were incredibly stupid, you could do almost anything to it/with it. Very sturdy, well built, dependable and pilot friendly.

She always delivered me, my crews, and many thousands of passengers safely to our destination, and she will always have my deepest respect and love.

Jack

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: Highflier92660
Posted 2013-02-09 10:17:32 and read 7382 times.

Just a beautiful aircraft, as though the laws of aerodynamics and aesthetics converged to create her. I've heard the only drawback of that amazing 108 foot wing was the Boeing 727's lack of altitude capability; one captain told me that anything above FL-370 was considered outer space. In one well documented incident, a TWA Boeing 727 attempting to get up 39,000 ft over Michigan nearly crashed.

It's a shame the tail-mounted engines prohibited higher bypass engine installations as the rest of the airframe could fly for years to come.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: SpaceshipDC10
Posted 2013-02-09 10:29:09 and read 7255 times.

Quoting type-rated (Reply 33):
Quoting United_fan (Reply 24):Quoting SurfandSnow (Reply 13):
I remember they even flew the 727 from ORD all the way out to LAS!
I believe UA also flew them ORD-SFO

I once flew a UA 727 ORD-LAX non-stop.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: UA735WL
Posted 2013-02-09 10:47:21 and read 7104 times.

The 727 always was my favorite aircraft to fly on, by far....much more elegent and more capable than the fuel miserly birds of today (!)

My first 727 ride was on US in in 1995 SFO-CLT....shortly before they retired their mainline fleet. I didn't get the reg #, but but I do remember the scheme:
!


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Photo © Frank C. Duarte Jr.



My last trip on the '27 was almost immediately after 9/11 on the OAK- DEN leg of an OAK-DEN -AUS trip on UA (the other leg was a 732!. Both flights were nearly empty and the FAs told me that both types were soon to be gone from UA. The reg. of the 722 was N7443U.


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Photo © Wilsam Cheung



Boy do I miss them...

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: 71Zulu
Posted 2013-02-09 10:49:58 and read 7106 times.

Here is a great vid to hear the sound of the 727

http://youtu.be/gwel7Ulmrvs

Quoting SpaceshipDC10 (Reply 41):
I once flew a UA 727 ORD-LAX non-stop.

US Air flew the 722 CLT-SFO

http://youtu.be/ZBVh2GJJdus

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: s.p.a.s.
Posted 2013-02-09 11:19:32 and read 6804 times.

I have fond memories on the 727...

Back in the day I was an youngster we used to travel a lot and I made many flights on RG, TR (QD back then) and SC 727-100s and just a few with VP -200s. Always a nice ride. On later years we had some charter operators around and I remember booking a GRU-GIG flight just to fly on a 727-200, and that was more or less 10 years ago.

My last ever flight on a pax 727 was with AA, Puerto Plata-Miami. I remember the interior was very well kept.

As a pilot I had not the chance to fly it, albeit we still have plenty of them flying cargo around here, but my career paths took me in other direction. Talking to the seasoned captains I have the chance to fly with, all say about the same was already said here, a pilot's airplane.

Long live to the 727!

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: ozark1
Posted 2013-02-09 11:42:58 and read 6600 times.

Quoting CRJ900 (Reply 1):
Interesting that they chose to have the galley halfway down the cabin on the B727-100 but actually a great idea, made a natural separation between First and economy class.
Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 6):
It complicated reconfigurations as very few carriers needed such a large F class cabin on the typical routes operated by the 721. Having to split the foward cabin ahead of the galley into 2 or 3 rows of F and 2 or 3 rows of Y wasn't as efficient as having the entire cabin to work with as on the 722. The seats directly opposite the galley also weren't very nice with the cabin crew working in the galley just across the aisle

Yeah, it was rough working out of the one galley with 3, sometimes 4, FA's. We called the small section of coach seats forward of the galley the Twilight Zone. I think when I started with AA it was configured 10/92. That was when there was a huge closet for carryon bags directly across from the galley. This was when we had the orange interior. If my memory serves me correctly, they took that bag storage bin out and then the plane went to 10/108. It was difficult doing a first class dinner service from that one galley. Generally F/C was catered on the left side of the galley and coach on the right side. We had this long skinny work table that we pulled out of a storage place in the wall and placed it across the aircraft door. That's where all the wine would be placed and other items needed for F/C. In coach we asked each other "Do you want to set up or serve?" So one FA would stay in the galley and setup the trays and entrees and the other FA would run the food.
We served them two at a time, but when we picked up we could stack about 6 trays at least. One FA was the "stuffer" who put the used trays back in the meal carrier (You were down on your knees in the galley), and the other would run in a stack and leave them for the other to stuff. Pickup went pretty fast even before the era of the cart.
One F/A sat on the back jumpseat, one sat on the aisle seat of row 9, which had been reconfigured with a shoulder harness and was directly opposite the galley door. And then one was by the forward door.
I can remember times when I was the #4, the one by the galley, and I got to strap in to a harness and the two passengers next to me just had seat belts. "How come we don't get that??!"
To wrap it up,#1, who worked F/C also had to feed the 3 pilots and back then they were a lot more demanding, so 1 was the position we really didn't care for!

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: av757
Posted 2013-02-09 12:38:21 and read 6161 times.

Those 727-259/Adv we had at AV powered with the large PW JT8D-17R engines, had the auto throttle, auto brakes, the PDCS (performance data computer system) and the two Litton omega navigation system installed.

They also had on the fuselage in the aft section just in front of the engine intakes by the aft service doors a sign with the "Boeing Super 727" legend which made them a real joy to fly.

I have great memories of having had the priviledge of flying this great airplane in all its versions as a copilot and captain for many years.

Regards:
AV757


View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Gerard Helmer

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: deltacto
Posted 2013-02-09 12:51:43 and read 6015 times.

Quoting type-rated (Reply 21):
Did NW every fly the -100 model or just the -200 model? I never did encounter a NW -100.

Here's a seat map of Northwest's 727-100 from 1991
8F/110Y

http://www.departedflights.com/NW7271091.html

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: ak
Posted 2013-02-09 12:52:20 and read 5973 times.

Long live the "Lead Sled"!

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: KC135TopBoom
Posted 2013-02-09 12:57:20 and read 5945 times.

My first flight was on a Northeast B-727-95, around 1966 or so, BOS to MIA. My first B-727-200 was also aboard a NE B-727-200 (they were the launch customer for the streched version) in 1970, BOS-ATL, on my way to USAF Basic Training. The second leg was on a DL DC-8, ATL-SAT.

The DC-8 was louder than the B-727 was, at least inside the cabin.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: garpd
Posted 2013-02-09 13:34:55 and read 5581 times.

Quoting longhauler (Reply 32):
That's brilliant!
It would make a great flight bag sticker, and it reminds me how very handsome the B727 was/is.

I hope you don't mind, but I re-posted that on our pilot forum, as there are more than a few B727-100/200 drivers in our ranks!

Not at all, go right ahead

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: SpaceshipDC10
Posted 2013-02-09 13:44:58 and read 5486 times.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 12):
Quoting yyz717 (Reply 11):Now....a rare 722 arrival or departure makes me stop and stare.You don't have a choice since they're so damn loud.

They are indeed, but I've always found the BAC 1-11to be louder than the 722.

Quoting 71Zulu (Reply 43):
US Air flew the 722 CLT-SFO

http://youtu.be/ZBVh2GJJdus

That's a great video with all those 727s in the take-off queue, the sound, and then the DC-10s in three variants at SFO.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: 7BOEING7
Posted 2013-02-09 14:19:58 and read 5122 times.

The 727 changed my life.

In 1966 as a senior in high school I had the unique opportunity to fly on a production test flight in a 727. Sitting in the jump seat for takeoff, flying over the snow capped Cascade mountains on a perfectly clear day in the northwest and then piloting the airplane from the copilot's seat at 10,000 ft over the San Juan Islands was an unbelievable experience. My father had worked for Boeing and living under the flight path to Boeing field I saw the airplanes flying over everyday, but I had never thought about being a pilot up until that day. After four years in college I spent most of the next 40+ years in the "best seat in the house". I still look up anytime I hear something flying overhead.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: cubastar
Posted 2013-02-09 14:27:01 and read 5028 times.

Quoting Highflier92660 (Reply 40):
one captain told me that anything above FL-370 was considered outer space. In one well documented incident, a TWA Boeing 727 attempting to get up 39,000 ft over Michigan nearly crashed.

Actually, if you were light enough, smooth enough and the temperature cold enough, the 72 flew quite well at 42,000 ft. Once, flying out of IAH eastbound with a strong tailwind, we leveled off at FL420 (max certificated) and hauled a$$ to ATL.

In competition with AA on the ORD-DFW route, we were usually fairly light. If it was choppy at the lower altitudes and we were lightly loaded, it was easy to get a "block altitude" of FL39 to 41, level off at FL40 and fly all the way to Texas.

The 727 would do just about anything asked of it and never fuss. Terrific aircraft!! I flew left seat on it for 13 years.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: cubastar
Posted 2013-02-09 14:48:13 and read 4779 times.

Quoting Max Q (Reply 18):
And fast, very fast, VMO of 380 Knots with an MMO of .92

I know where you got your screen name from but wasn't the VMO a little higher than 380? My old brain is really rusty. Coming downhill on the barberpole was fun and LOUD, especially at "Max Q",

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: Viscount724
Posted 2013-02-09 18:54:59 and read 4290 times.

Quoting type-rated (Reply 21):
Quoting jetjack74 (Reply 20):
A gorgeous plane with a great sound to it

When those 3 engines spooled up you definitely knew you were going places. But at full load the plane seemed to eat up a lot of runway on takeoff.

I remember quite a few 727-200 flights on routes like ORD-West Coast, especially early models with the lower-thrust engines, where you wondered if you were ever going to lift off before the runway ran out. It was much like a 707 or DC-8 on a West Coast-Europe nonstop.

Quoting SpaceshipDC10 (Reply 51):
They are indeed, but I've always found the BAC 1-11 to be louder than the 722.

Agree, there's not much that's louder than the Rolls-Royce Spey. Even with hushkits they're loud.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: piedmont727
Posted 2013-02-09 19:36:23 and read 4227 times.

wow 50 years! never had the privlige of flying on one but it was my dads favorite airliner and still is too this day , he always talked about when he worked for piedmont and having to tell pilots they need to take bags off becuse they would be overweight and the pilots trusting the 727s power so much telling my dad to put the bags on anyway

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: type-rated
Posted 2013-02-09 19:44:55 and read 4209 times.

NW used to fly them MDW-MSP back in the 70's. They would use most of the runway, but then transition into a really steep climb out. Wonderful to watch.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: Max Q
Posted 2013-02-09 19:49:52 and read 4202 times.

Quoting cubastar (Reply 54):

I know where you got your screen name from but wasn't the VMO a little higher than 380? My old brain is really rusty. Coming downhill on the barberpole was fun and LOUD, especially at "Max Q",

I got a kick out of that Cstar!


It may have been higher, in fact, if I remember correctly, in A mode VMO was 380 knots at sea level but that increased a little as you climbed into the mid 20000's then you became limited by MMO as you went higher.


But Max Q's memory is fading a little as he just turned 50 !

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: HermansCVR580
Posted 2013-02-09 19:58:39 and read 4176 times.

This was by far my favorite plane to fuel. It would take the fuel as fast as you could give it to her. Glad I had the honor, I bet I fueled 1,000 of them if not more. Helps when you fueled at one of FedEx's hubs.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: Wingtips56
Posted 2013-02-09 22:26:23 and read 4034 times.

The 727-022 was my first jet ride, on a SFO-YVR flight in 1966. My family and I had flown in from SAC on a UA DC-6, which was the first flight I was old enough to remember (10 years old then), connecting to the YVR flight. Both had the livery current with the photo in the first post here. I remember my dad commenting on how quiet (inside) and smooth the jet was, and I agreed after the vibrating, loud DC-6 segment on the inbound connection.

That began our trip across Canada by rail, Canadian Pacific's "The Canadian", from Vancouver to Montreal. 3+ days, and I loved it. From there to Maine and NH visiting all of my relatives. That was the summer of the great airline strike. We were supposed to fly TW from BOS to SFO, but they were one of the airlines on strike. They finally found us seats a week later, flying an AA 727-023 BOS-JFK and the late night AA 707 JFK-SFO (Flight 33), getting in at 2:00am or so. We'd been ticketed on West Coast Airlline SFO-SAC in the morning, but dang it if the folks didn't want to wait. So we drove back in a rental car. I was disappointed in that. I was hooked on flying!

But I picked up an order form on the AA flight for their airliner models. I got both the 727-023 in the AA Oval Astrojet logo, and the pre-Oval 707 models, my first of many as it turned out. Who knew that many years later, I would end up working for AA (absorbed from the AirCal merger in 1987.

I flew mostly 727-2xx after that on a variety of airlines including AA, UA, PSA, AF, Tame, DL, MX, Western, NW, PA, TK, TW. But late in the game flew an AA -023 LAX-HDN-LAX, and an Avianca -0xx from CLO to BOG in 1991 or so. It took three flight attendants inside and at least one agent on the jet bridge to get that AV door to close. Hmmmm.... I was up front watching, and remember wishing there was a R1 door for emergencies, but there wasn't one!

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: enginebird
Posted 2013-02-10 01:30:27 and read 3910 times.

50 years old and still a pleasure to look at, something we cannot say about many humans  

The 727 has always been one of my favorite planes and when it had already been removed from service with many airlines, I sometimes went our of my way just to fly on one of the old 727s of United and later Comair South Africa. Unfortunately, the 727s there are gone now, too.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: Max Q
Posted 2013-02-10 01:51:05 and read 3883 times.

Quoting av757 (Reply 46):
Those 727-259/Adv we had at AV powered with the large PW JT8D-17R engines, had the auto throttle, auto brakes, the PDCS (performance data computer system) and the two Litton omega navigation system installed.

That must have been a particularly nice B727. We had Omega and PDCS but none of those other goodies !

Quoting cubastar (Reply 53):

Actually, if you were light enough, smooth enough and the temperature cold enough, the 72 flew quite well at 42,000 ft. Once, flying out of IAH eastbound with a strong tailwind, we leveled off at FL420 (max certificated) and hauled a$$ to ATL.

In competition with AA on the ORD-DFW route, we were usually fairly light. If it was choppy at the lower altitudes and we were lightly loaded, it was easy to get a "block altitude" of FL39 to 41, level off at FL40 and fly all the way to Texas.

The 727 would do just about anything asked of it and never fuss. Terrific aircraft!! I flew left seat on it for 13 years.

Agree, if you were light enough it did fine at high altitude, I went to 390 a few times and 410 once.

Quoting tb727 (Reply 38):

After loving the airplane my whole life, it's very special to me that I may be one of the last pilots that will probably ever be typed in it. I just flew one into maintenance and, not knowing it at the time, it was the airplanes last flight. After over 35 years of faithful service, I would have at least done a missed approach and brought it back around the pattern one last time. It may be gone but her parts will help another one take to the skies once again so at least we have that going for us.

The 727: Checking Essential since 1963!

Good for you TB, enjoy and best wishes !

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: CF-CPI
Posted 2013-02-10 05:47:16 and read 3781 times.

Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 55):
I remember quite a few 727-200 flights on routes like ORD-West Coast, especially early models with the lower-thrust engines, where you wondered if you were ever going to lift off before the runway ran out

Happy birthday, 727!

In 2001 I was on a DL advanced model out of LAS bound for SJC. There can't have been much fuel on board, but with the 108 degree temps in mid-afternoon, we did not so much take off, as we did ease up by osmosis, in spite of the more advanced JT8Ds. The early -200s were underpowered according to some retired WA/DL crews I spoke with. WA's were operating out of some higher elevations, and that just exacerbated things. The -100s were really sporty looking and it's a pity WA didn't have any - the red W would have looked great on it.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: ABQopsHP
Posted 2013-02-10 06:10:37 and read 3747 times.

She was a great bird to work. Both above and below the wing. I miss seeing her around. And the sound of those P&W engines. Gotta love her.

JD CRP

[Edited 2013-02-10 06:11:00]

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: Highflier92660
Posted 2013-02-10 10:23:14 and read 3559 times.

Quoting cubastar (Reply 54):
Coming downhill on the barberpole was fun and LOUD, especially at "Max Q"

No doubt you were one of the captains they used to call "Captain Clacker."

Cubaster, I also have the feeling you were around when multi-colored Braniff aircraft ruled the Dallas Love Field tarmac and quarterback Craig Morton owned a nightclub called Wellington's just over Bachman Lake.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: type-rated
Posted 2013-02-10 10:29:17 and read 3533 times.

Didn't National airlines fly the -100 model MIA-LAX?

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: cubastar
Posted 2013-02-10 10:40:20 and read 3518 times.

Quoting Max Q (Reply 58):
But Max Q's memory is fading a little as he just turned 50 !

Ahhhh, Youth!

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: cubastar
Posted 2013-02-10 11:15:37 and read 3482 times.

Quoting Highflier92660 (Reply 65):
No doubt you were one of the captains they used to call "Captain Clacker."

Actually, I didn't like that "clacker" so I'd just let it "click" once or twice and pull about 1% back on #2.

I don't think that I was known as a "Captain Clacker" but once when being turned over to FtWorth Center (atc) going into DFW they said that we were following an American DC-10 and advised us to "keep our speed up" so as to decrease the spacing between us and the 10. I did hear the FO moan, "Oh my, here we go"

A little more about the performance of the 727-200. All of our 72's had the -15 engines and it was no slouch on takeoff. Of course if you had a heavy load and were taking off to the west in Vegas going to ATL you could have a little second segment climb problem with the runway temp at 110+.

All in all, it could get airborne quite comfortably, fly faster and land shorter than most any airliner flying in those days. And, though some on here won't believe it, you could make a very smooth landing with 40 degree flaps by flying the Vref speed + 5 knots and keeping the power on until you were just about to touch down. One thing, however, that you never wanted to do with 40 flaps was to pull the power off (idle) until you were ready to touch down. If you did, it sank like a tank.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: ozark1
Posted 2013-02-10 14:48:57 and read 3325 times.

Quoting type-rated (Reply 66):
Didn't National airlines fly the -100 model MIA-LAX?

Not sure about National but I know Northeast did.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: Viscount724
Posted 2013-02-10 15:31:34 and read 3267 times.

Quoting Wingtips56 (Reply 60):
The 727-022 was my first jet ride, on a SFO-YVR flight in 1966.

Repeating my previous reply as the end became corrupted and won't let me edit for some reason.

UA would have had a stop in SEA in 1966. No US or Canadian carriers had route authority SFO-YVR until both CP and Western were awarded the route in mid-1966 although service didn't start until 1967 if memory correct. At that time the only SFO-YVR nonstop service was a once-a-week QF 707 5th freedom tag-on. As part of the 1966 route awards, Western also obtained nonstop rights LAX-YVR, and was the only carrier permitted to operate that route nonstop until 1974 when CP was awarded the route. Western was also granted PDX-YVR rights in that round but only if the PDX flights also served SFO or LAX.

UA's only transborder route authority in 1966 was SEA-YVR so any flights to/from other U.S. points had to make a stop in SEA. UA didn't obtain the authority fly nonstop SFO-YVR until transborder routes were deregulated many years later. UA also obtained rights ORD-Toronto sometime in 1966, which along with SEA-YYZ were UA's only international routes for quite a few years.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: Wingtips56
Posted 2013-02-10 16:40:27 and read 3189 times.

I was on the plane....it did not stop in Seattle. It flew SFO-YVR non-stop. June 1966.

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: tb727
Posted 2013-02-10 16:49:56 and read 3175 times.

Quoting cubastar (Reply 68):
Actually, I didn't like that "clacker" so I'd just let it "click" once or twice and pull about 1% back on #2.

It's not a limitation, it's a goal!

Topic: RE: Boeing 727 – 1963-2013 - 50 Years In The Air
Username: Tomassjc
Posted 2013-02-10 17:17:24 and read 3150 times.

Quoting ozark1 (Reply 69):
Quoting type-rated (Reply 66):
Didn't National airlines fly the -100 model MIA-LAX?

Not sure about National but I know Northeast did.

National did run a -100 nonstop LAX-FLL red eye in 1979.


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