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Topic: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: aerohottie
Posted 2013-02-10 20:13:36 and read 19189 times.

Its a quiet day at work, and I just had a thought... should the AA and US merger go ahead, this will be an airline wit a massive fleet of single-aisle aircraft. I understand that AA have ordered both 737Max and A320NEO's as their fleet replacement. However, even with ordering both types, it will still take such a long time to replace the combined fleets, by the time the current fleet is replaced it will be time to replace the replacements again.

With a requirement for so many aircraft, would it be possible for the merged AA (or DL or UA for that matter), to approach an aircraft manufacturer (Lockheed please) to design, develop and build their own aircraft specific to their needs?

Looking at the current aircraft fleet and adding 5% capacity growth year on year for the next 5-7 years (time to first delivery) AA would have a requirement for over 1,000 frames, and even more when factoring growth over the period of delivery (10-14 years from now).

Your thoughts?

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: phxa340
Posted 2013-02-10 20:16:35 and read 19231 times.

Of course. DL and CO asked Boeing to build them the 764. WN asked Boeing for the 737NG. UA asked for 777. EK is asking and probably going to get the 777X.

What works for AA will also work for many other airlines. As far as your Lockheed wish .... keep dreaming  

Btw your figure for 1,000 frames is a little bit on the high side.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: Mir
Posted 2013-02-10 20:26:26 and read 19120 times.

No. No manufacturer builds an airplane, even a variant of an existing airplane, specifically for one carrier. They may get a request from one carrier, shop it around a bit to see if anyone else is interested, and then make it if there seems to be enough demand. But making an airplane is a very expensive business, and the orders from one airline alone aren't going to make the numbers work out.

-Mir

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: CapEd388
Posted 2013-02-10 20:50:54 and read 18981 times.

Quoting Mir (Reply 2):
No. No manufacturer builds an airplane, even a variant of an existing airplane, specifically for one carrier.

I can think of at least once exception, the MD-88. Build for and operated solely by Delta.

Plus the 764 example provided above by PHXA340.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: PanAmPaul
Posted 2013-02-10 20:54:29 and read 18950 times.

I would say yes with a lot of strings attached.

Look at Pan Am's involvement in the 747. Of course, those days are long gone but a carrier the size of the merged AA would have tremendous clout.

I doubt it would be Lockheed, however. No recent passenger plane experience and that means a long learning curve.

Of course, AA has a huge order split among Boeing and Airbus - and will take up a huge percentage of both airplane mfr's capacity in the next few years so this would be an interesting discussion on many fronts.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: nutsaboutplanes
Posted 2013-02-10 20:56:43 and read 18929 times.

I think Mir is saying that the manufacturer would have to believe that there would be a market with other carriers as well. There is entirely to much risk in sinking a ton of R and D into an aircraft for one company that could be gone tomorrow leaving the manufacturer with a product that nobody else wants.

I have to believe that Boeing felt that they had a case for the 764 outside of CO and DL and MD felt that they had a case for the MD88 outside of DL. If memory serves correctly however, didnt the MD87 share technology with the MD88?

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: antoniemey
Posted 2013-02-10 21:03:38 and read 18884 times.

Quoting nutsaboutplanes (Reply 5):
If memory serves correctly however, didnt the MD87 share technology with the MD88?

I think so... and an MD-82 can be updated to the same standards... only DL has gone to the trouble of having the type paperwork changed as well.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: aerohottie
Posted 2013-02-10 21:06:44 and read 18842 times.

Quoting phxa340 (Reply 1):
As far as your Lockheed wish .... keep dreaming

I know  
I wish they would though. I'd love Lockheed to get back into the civil space.

Quoting phxa340 (Reply 1):
Btw your figure for 1,000 frames is a little bit on the high side.

Really??? how so???

AA current NB fleet;
B738 x 200
B752 x 102
MD-80's x 184
Total = 486

US current NB fleet;
A319 x 93
A320 x 72
A321 x 75
B734 x 32
B752 x 24
Total = 296

Combined current NB total = 782

So now take the 782 current fleet, and build in 5% growth for an initial period of 5-7 years to the point of EIS, then a window of 5-7 years of delivery (10-14 years growth at 5% p.a.). This gives a total fleet requirement of 1274-1548 without factoring in any marketshare growth.

Would an order for 1274-1548 aircraft be enough to justify building your own aircraft in partnership with a manufacturer??? I think it would.

Quoting phxa340 (Reply 1):
DL and CO asked Boeing to build them the 764

My initial thought was for AA to "ask" an existing manufacturer to build an aircraft for them, but rather would it be possible for AA to build the aircraft themselves in partnership with a manufacturer??? (Please please please Lockheed hahaha)

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: rwessel
Posted 2013-02-10 21:07:40 and read 18845 times.

Boeing, United and Pratt were the same company until broken up by the Air Mail Act in the 30s.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: nrt1011
Posted 2013-02-10 21:08:12 and read 18816 times.

Better developa good strategy for re-using older planes. Seems it would take far too long to wait for new ones, and with an airline that large then segmentation is critical. There is certainly a segment of that that could well operate with older planes

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: aerohottie
Posted 2013-02-10 21:10:03 and read 18816 times.

Quoting PanAmPaul (Reply 4):
Look at Pan Am's involvement in the 747. Of course, those days are long gone but a carrier the size of the merged AA would have tremendous clout.

Oh yeah, forgot about Pan Ams involvement in the 747... did Pan Am or United once own part of Boeing? or was it the other way around?...

Quoting PanAmPaul (Reply 4):
I doubt it would be Lockheed, however. No recent passenger plane experience and that means a long learning curve.

NOOOO!!!!! you are right of course

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: Mir
Posted 2013-02-10 21:11:27 and read 18813 times.

Quoting CapEd388 (Reply 3):
I can think of at least once exception, the MD-88. Build for and operated solely by Delta.

The MD-88 is basically an MD-82 with a fancier cockpit and some cosmetic changes in the cabin. It's more akin to the MD-90s that McD built for Saudi Arabian that had an MD-11 style cockpit than a new variant of the aircraft.

Quoting CapEd388 (Reply 3):
Plus the 764 example provided above by PHXA340.

The 764 was not built solely for CO or DL - Boeing had hoped other carriers would buy it as well, but everyone else found that the 332 was better suited for their needs. There wasn't a whole lot of investment needed on Boeing's part, so it wasn't that much of a problem, but the program was not as successful as they wanted it to be.

-Mir

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: iFlyLOTs
Posted 2013-02-10 21:14:13 and read 18782 times.

Quoting aerohottie (Reply 10):
did Pan Am or United once own part of Boeing? or was it the other way around?...

Boeing owned United.

Quoting aerohottie (Reply 7):
My initial thought was for AA to "ask" an existing manufacturer to build an aircraft for them, but rather would it be possible for AA to build the aircraft themselves in partnership with a manufacturer??? (Please please please Lockheed hahaha)

So something along the lines of what easyJet tried to do with the ecoJet?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EcoJet

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: CapEd388
Posted 2013-02-10 21:15:56 and read 18779 times.

Quoting nutsaboutplanes (Reply 5):
I have to believe that Boeing felt that they had a case for the 764 outside of CO and DL and MD felt that they had a case for the MD88 outside of DL. If memory serves correctly however, didnt the MD87 share technology with the MD88?

Yes I agree, but at the end of the day, the MD-88 was build on the back of Delta orders and options. The variant may not have been intended "specifically and only" for Delta, but DL certainly got the ball rolling on that variant.

Im not sure about technology, but I do know the MD-88 has similar specifications to the MD82 and MD83.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: 1337Delta764
Posted 2013-02-10 21:18:20 and read 18749 times.

Quoting Mir (Reply 11):
The 764 was not built solely for CO or DL - Boeing had hoped other carriers would buy it as well, but everyone else found that the 332 was better suited for their needs. There wasn't a whole lot of investment needed on Boeing's part, so it wasn't that much of a problem, but the program was not as successful as they wanted it to be.

Not solely, but primarily. It accomplished its primary mission of suiting the widebody trijet replacements needs of DL and CO and prevented them from defecting to Airbus.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: rfields5421
Posted 2013-02-10 21:18:39 and read 18747 times.

Quoting aerohottie (Thread starter):
With a requirement for so many aircraft, would it be possible for the merged AA (or DL or UA for that matter), to approach an aircraft manufacturer (Lockheed please) to design, develop and build their own aircraft specific to their needs?

A manufacturer would do it if the price were right. Everything will have to be paid by the airline up front so the aircraft manufacturer isn't stuck with the development costs.

Probably a 4 to 6 billion dollar up front payment plan over a year or so - new factories, new workers, training, etc. No manufacturer is going to pay the development costs of a new aircraft without a guarantee, and a check, to make sure they don't lose money.

That's assuming the manufacturer has a design concept which could be put a prototype on the ramp in three years. Add two more years for certification.

Sure, it could be done. They would get about 100 aircraft in seven years, at a cost higher than buying 300 aircraft from Airbus and Boeing in the same seven years.

And we haven't even discussed A & B pulling every political string they can find to slow the 'new' manufacturer from getting up and running and the new aircraft approved.

I see only one potential possible manufacturer - Sukhoi or possibly Antonov - that might be able to survive and get the plane into the air.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: hOmsar
Posted 2013-02-10 21:19:36 and read 18748 times.

Quoting aerohottie (Reply 7):
So now take the 782 current fleet, and build in 5% growth for an initial period of 5-7 years to the point of EIS, then a window of 5-7 years of delivery (10-14 years growth at 5% p.a.). This gives a total fleet requirement of 1274-1548 without factoring in any marketshare growth.

Would an order for 1274-1548 aircraft be enough to justify building your own aircraft in partnership with a manufacturer??? I think it would.

You're asking two different things. One is will AA need to buy 1200-1500 planes in the next 10-15 years (the answer to that is no). Two is whether a hypothetical order for 1200 planes would be enough to launch a new plane (the answer to that is probably, but that assumes a new plane model is needed; the next question is, is a new plane model needed; the answer to that is no).

A few things.

1) I doubt AA's needs are so specific that they would need a plane built just for them. They probably could find what they need already available from existing manufacturers (and, in fact, they have).

2) They are currently already receiving new 737-800s, and have received a bunch (I don't have exact numbers) over the past couple of years. These planes will be able to last at least 20 years, perhaps more. So there's no need to even consider replacement of these frames within the timeframe you mention. Even their oldest 737-800s would just start to need replacement in about 10 years.

3) Is 5% growth a realistic assumption? Without looking it up, I suspect that many mainline US carriers actually had larger fleets in the past than they do today (with regional jets having taken a lot of mainline flying).

4) You acknowledge that they do have 737NG (and I believe they have options of the 737MAX, but I don't think they have orders) and A320/A320neo on order. When those planes are delivered over the next several years, that fleet will be set for the next 2-3 decades. No need to think about replacing those.

[Edited 2013-02-10 21:22:49]

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: antoniemey
Posted 2013-02-10 21:26:51 and read 18696 times.

Quoting hOmsar (Reply 16):

3) Is 5% growth a realistic assumption? Without looking it up, I suspect that many mainline US carriers actually had larger fleets in the past than they do today (with regional jets having taken a lot of mainline flying).

Nope. Market growth + consolidation means that the likes of Southwest, Delta, and United have larger individual fleets than any airline ever has before.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: aerohottie
Posted 2013-02-10 21:46:43 and read 18577 times.

Quoting hOmsar (Reply 16):
1) I doubt AA's needs are so specific that they would need a plane built just for them. They probably could find what they need already available from existing manufacturers (and, in fact, they have).

I guess this raises the question that sparked my initial thought. Can the existing manufacturers build the aircraft required by these megacarriers fast enough or soon enough?

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: cornutt
Posted 2013-02-10 21:59:58 and read 18490 times.

Quoting rwessel (Reply 8):
Boeing, United and Pratt were the same company until broken up by the Air Mail Act in the 30s.

Yep, and if a U.S.-owned airline were allowed to do that today, Bill Boeing would rise from his grave and assassinate some Congressmen. He left the aviation industry because of United Aircraft being broken up.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: ADent
Posted 2013-02-10 22:04:39 and read 18456 times.

Boeing, United airlines, P&W (aka United Technologies) all were the same company until broken up by the US Federal government in the 1030s. Not sure if it legal for an airline to build airplanes.

AA could follow the Apple model. If they can't get what they need, they will finance a factory or such in exchange for commitments. Apple makes this work with a huge stack of cash, which airlines typically do not have.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: JarradS
Posted 2013-02-10 23:28:42 and read 18090 times.

If any airline were to do this, it would most probably involve the Chinese.

Just my Opinion.............

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: flyingturtle
Posted 2013-02-11 01:35:15 and read 16889 times.

Because I remember my translating work (German to English) I've done on Wikipedia...

Swissair persuaded Douglas to produce the DC-9-32, and with the DC-9-51, SR was the launch customer. Then Mr. Baltensweiler traveled to the U.S. ton convince DC of stretching the -51 even longer, thus producing the -81 or MD-80.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Swissair

Feel free to correct me if anything of that is wrong.  

David

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: HawaiianBird
Posted 2013-02-11 02:25:46 and read 16407 times.

Quoting CapEd388 (Reply 3):
I can think of at least once exception, the MD-88. Build for and operated solely by Delta.

But did not Iberia operate that variant of the MD-80 series until a few years ago as well?

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: JoePatroni707
Posted 2013-02-11 04:20:53 and read 15549 times.

CR Smith (AA president/CEO) convinced Douglas to build the DC-3. AA also played a major role of the DC-10 as well, but not the only contributor to the -10 program.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: PSU.DTW.SCE
Posted 2013-02-11 04:57:08 and read 15266 times.

In this era, there is no justification for building exclusive aircraft since the costs involved would not be offset by any sort of advantage for the carrier.

For example the economies of scale for producing an aircraft type at 60+ per month are huge in comparison to producing only 5-10 per month. Plus the vast amount of fixed costs including enigineering and overhead would have be spread over a much smaller production lot.

Plus, there are some pretty rediculous numbers being thrown out for the number of aircraft needed for AA's fleet replacement. Due to the size of the fleets, the huge capital outlays, and the life of modern aircraft they are still going to be operating most aircraft on a 25-30 year replacement cycle. Yes, there may be some exceptions with some of the recent current generation aircraft, but the costs involved of a huge fleet do not justify a 15 year turnover.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: hotplane
Posted 2013-02-11 05:08:33 and read 15130 times.

Can't see it happening nowadays. A few years ago easyJet did ask Airbus to produce an A322, but nothing came of it. In the 60s, Hawker Siddeley built the Trident pretty much to BEAs requirements.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: aa777223
Posted 2013-02-11 05:43:20 and read 14773 times.

I would liken Delta's influence on the creation of the new "variant" MD-88, to the influence of NW on the new variant of DC-10, the -40. It was something that was really a small change, and probably would have come to market anyway. they were just the first to ask, and requested a unique name for it.

Oversimplification, perhaps. However, I don't think there is a precedent for manufacturer persuasion by a single airline much more than that in recent times.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: web500sjc
Posted 2013-02-11 05:47:50 and read 14688 times.

AA got Douglas tosinglehandedly build the DC-7

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Douglas_DC-7

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: alfa164
Posted 2013-02-11 06:26:43 and read 14093 times.

I do like your theory; it would be the ultimate in vertical integration (no pun intended) in the airkine industry. And it has been done before; when Boeing owned United, there is little doubt its aircraft were designed specifically to meet United's needs first.

The real weakness I see is that AA won't need 1,200 of a particular type of aircraft; it will need a number of aircraft types - with a maximum of 300 - 400 of each type. That makes the idea far less possible... but, like you, I'd love to see it - especially if it would bring Lockheed back to civil aviation.

Aviation has always been the territory of big dreamers - keep it up!

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: alfablue
Posted 2013-02-11 07:28:53 and read 13182 times.

Quoting Mir (Reply 2):
No. No manufacturer builds an airplane, even a variant of an existing airplane, specifically for one carrier.

Airbus built a variant for easyjet (even though it was also sold to others). The 156 seat A319 with modified rear galley and the additional set of over wing emergency exits was built to make easyjet switch to Airbus. Air India got the modified landing gear and the Japanese got the Domestic B747's. I think there are countless examples of airline specific variants (even though those variants will be offered to other interested airlines too).

alfaBlue

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: Aesma
Posted 2013-02-11 07:38:07 and read 13018 times.

A cheap derivative maybe (like Airbus tweaking exits on the A319 and now A321), but that's it. If anything the 764 is a lesson that you shouldn't do that. And nowadays any significant development costs billions upon billions, that even 1000 orders (or narrowbodies) will not necessary cover (especially since when you order that much, you want a huge discount).

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: Burkhard
Posted 2013-02-11 07:43:49 and read 12938 times.

As far as I understand, American ins bankrupt and US Airways just not. How could they get the 50 Billion $ together to develop something better than 737MAX/A320 NEO.

And, isn't it illegal to build aircraft AND operate them in the US - wasn't United a grand daughter of a Boeing Airline?

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: BooDog
Posted 2013-02-11 07:47:11 and read 12877 times.

This reminds me of the question "Why does Boeing use Rolls Royce, GE, etc. for engine suppliers instead of building their own?" I believe Boeing's response was that they need to stick to what they do best. Building planes. They'd rather outsource the engines to companies that build the best engines.

Let American Airlines do what they do best. Run an airline.

What if 90% of AA's fleet was of one model, and the FAA grounded that model? It would put the airline out of business.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: Burkhard
Posted 2013-02-11 08:06:35 and read 12493 times.

Quoting BooDog (Reply 34):
Let American Airlines do what they do best. Run an airline.

If the Airline they run is the best they can do, every free market would wash them away...

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: Mir
Posted 2013-02-11 08:14:55 and read 12370 times.

Quoting alfablue (Reply 31):
Airbus built a variant for easyjet (even though it was also sold to others). The 156 seat A319 with modified rear galley and the additional set of over wing emergency exits was built to make easyjet switch to Airbus. Air India got the modified landing gear and the Japanese got the Domestic B747's. I think there are countless examples of airline specific variants (even though those variants will be offered to other interested airlines too).

When I said variant, I meant a new version of an airplane (such as a 737-900 as opposed to an -800, or a 340-300 as opposed to a -200). The modifications to existing designs that you describe aren't nearly as involved, and happen all the time.

-Mir

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: CiC
Posted 2013-02-11 08:34:56 and read 12077 times.

Hm, Convair built the CV-880 95% based on Howard Hughes' (TWA's) request and spec, and the 990 75% on AA's spec and 25% on SR's (and didn't match both specs finally!).

The only successful operator of the 990 was Swissair... as far as I know... pls exclude the second hand operators like Spantax...

Same, Lockheed realised the Constellation mainly on Howard Hughes' (TW) spec, too...

And in France, Britain and Germany in the pre-WW2 environment the local manufacturers mainly produced based on the fag-carriers spec's...
The last european airliner built mainly on the spec of the legacy carrier was the Vickers VC-10 on BOAC's spec... am I right?

In Germany pre-war Lufthansa required many successful airliners like the record plane Focke-Wulf FW200 Condor (Berlin - New York nonstop in 1938), the Junkers G90 and some others...

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: 3rdGen
Posted 2013-02-11 08:36:13 and read 11990 times.

There are some big assumptions being made here:

1) There is so much new technology and scope to improve on the upcoming 737MAX and A320NEO that a new NB aircraft design will be on the boards soon.

2) If this new NB exists then A or B would not bother building it unless AA asked them to

3) AA has some special NB requirements that other airlines don't

All big assumptions. You are not talking about a niche aircraft here. You are talking about a massive project to design and build a clean sheet NB aircraft that is good enough to justify replacing both the A320NEO and the 737MAX with. Trust me, if that plane existed A or B would be rushing to get it into service. Building a new, better NB is a given, I don't think A or B will need AA to motivate them. The market for NBs is bigger than AA.

However, there doesn't seem to be any scope right now to design and release a new NB. Almost all advances that can be made at the present time to achieve a better aircraft (New Engines, Systems etc.) can be achieved via a refresh of the already successful 737 and 320. Which is exactly what both manufacturers are doing, the NEO and MAX. To justify a clean sheet design there would have to be major leaps in the airframe design which would lead to significant cost advantages.

Also, if it would benefit AA why would it not benefit others? What's so niche or special about AAs NB route structure that it needs a special airplane that can outdo the MAX and NEO while others wouldn't need it? Like I said before, you are talking about something that would need to outdo two of the most successful aircraft ever built. If it would be good for AA I'm sure it would be good for others as well. Like, I said I doubt A or B or any other manufacturer would be waiting for an airline to come around and ask them to build an aircraft better than the 320 or 737. If they could've they would've but they can't. It's like asking Pentium to build a new chipset. You wouldn't need to, if they can they will, because they know people will buy it, you won't need to prompt them.

Lastly, sure, after a merger they would definitely have a massive requirement for NBs, but then also remember that the point of a merger is to synthasize operations and cut down on the total number of routes/aircraft to make the airline more efficient. So simply adding the current numbers is not the whole story, the total number of aircraft may in fact decrease after the merger. Which is why the AA unions are fighting this. Mergers generally lead to lay offs as parts of both companies over lap one another.



[Edited 2013-02-11 08:44:54]

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: rfields5421
Posted 2013-02-11 08:45:18 and read 11866 times.

Quoting web500sjc (Reply 29):
AA got Douglas tosinglehandedly build the DC-7

Based on an existing airframe they had in production. And as noted in the Wiki article - Douglas required AA to commit to the full development financing. What was a $40 million commitment in 1950, would be a $4 billion commitment today.

Quoting CiC (Reply 37):
Convair built the CV-880 95% based on Howard Hughes' (TWA's) request and spec, and the 990 75% on AA's spec

And it broke Convair as a passener aircraft building company. It caused the greatest losses of any corporation in history at the time. The plane in today's world would bankrupt Microsoft or Apple.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: XEspecialist
Posted 2013-02-11 08:46:16 and read 11838 times.

Quoting Burkhard (Reply 33):
And, isn't it illegal to build aircraft AND operate them in the US - wasn't United a grand daughter of a Boeing Airline?

Not exactly.

Boeing and its subsidiary thought they'd be smug and develop an exclusive aircraft. This was the Boeing 247.

Sure it was fast and like nothing else on the market at the time, however there was a snag.

The 247 had two wing spars crossing the aisle that got in the way even though they were padded for 'comfort'.

The other snag was the other carriers wanted something similar or even better if possible. This led to one of the original RFPs (request for proposal) and subsequently the DC-2 and DC-3.

Boeing and its subsidiary United got caught with their pants down, as they were now the sole owners of a fleet of flying lemons.

Personally, I think this early scenario contributes to typical modern airline practices of not becoming too attached to one manufacturer, and operating diverse fleets.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: hOmsar
Posted 2013-02-11 09:11:26 and read 11461 times.

Quoting antoniemey (Reply 17):
Quoting hOmsar (Reply 16):

3) Is 5% growth a realistic assumption? Without looking it up, I suspect that many mainline US carriers actually had larger fleets in the past than they do today (with regional jets having taken a lot of mainline flying).

Nope. Market growth + consolidation means that the likes of Southwest, Delta, and United have larger individual fleets than any airline ever has before.

I meant when you factor out consolidation. Does UA today have more or fewer mainline planes than UA + CO of 15 years ago? What about DL today vs DL and NW in the late 1990s?

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: EMBQA
Posted 2013-02-11 09:35:18 and read 11126 times.

Quoting Mir (Reply 2):
No. No manufacturer builds an airplane, even a variant of an existing airplane, specifically for one carrier

The EMB-140 was built specifically for American Eagle.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: garpd
Posted 2013-02-11 10:52:44 and read 9758 times.

Quoting Mir (Reply 11):
The 764 was not built solely for CO or DL

So far as I can recall all the official info says the opposite. The 764 was a request from CO and DL for something between the 763 and 772. Of course, Boeing did try and sell it to anyone willing to listen. But the 764 was admittedly a customer request.

The real myth about the 764 was that Boeing built it to take on the A333.

[Edited 2013-02-11 10:53:46]

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: olli
Posted 2013-02-11 13:35:29 and read 7252 times.

Quoting HawaiianBird (Reply 23):

Quoting CapEd388 (Reply 3):
I can think of at least once exception, the MD-88. Build for and operated solely by Delta.

But did not Iberia operate that variant of the MD-80 series until a few years ago as well?


Of course DL was/is the biggest operator (by far) of the MD-88 but not the only one:: Austral, AeroMéxico, Iberia (Aviaco previously), Midwest and Onur Air among a few others, also operated them.

Kind Regards.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: 1337Delta764
Posted 2013-02-11 13:45:51 and read 7116 times.

Quoting garpd (Reply 42):
So far as I can recall all the official info says the opposite. The 764 was a request from CO and DL for something between the 763 and 772. Of course, Boeing did try and sell it to anyone willing to listen. But the 764 was admittedly a customer request.

The real myth about the 764 was that Boeing built it to take on the A333.

Exactly. Many seem to love to bash the 764 due to it not selling to other carriers. While Boeing would have hoped to sell it to a few more carriers, it doesn't overshadow the aircraft's primary mission as some like to believe. Both DL and CO refused to order the 763ER or 772ER as an L-1011/DC-10 replacement, and threatened to order the A332 unless Boeing came up with an economical, more similarly-sized aircraft, and thus the 764ER was born.

[Edited 2013-02-11 13:48:26]

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: Viscount724
Posted 2013-02-11 13:59:59 and read 6887 times.

Quoting CapEd388 (Reply 3):
the MD-88. Build for and operated solely by Delta.

Not correct. Most went to DL but 38 MD-88s were built for customers other than DL.

Quoting HawaiianBird (Reply 23):
Quoting CapEd388 (Reply 3):

But did not Iberia operate that variant of the MD-80 series until a few years ago as well?

IB operated the shorter-fuselage, longer range MD-87, not the MD-88; 24 of the 75 MD-87s went to IB.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: N505FX
Posted 2013-02-11 14:03:17 and read 6806 times.

Quoting PanAmPaul (Reply 4):
I doubt it would be Lockheed, however. No recent passenger plane experience and that means a long learning curve.

Not so much a learning curve on how to design and build the plane, that is what they do for a living....but supporting commercial operations and commercial customers needs - they haven't done that on any significant scale in a long time.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: 4holer
Posted 2013-02-11 14:18:55 and read 6596 times.

What if...
They could make a business case for a fleet of 200 or so smaller supersonic passenger airliners and have a manufacturer build it to their standard? What if a Middle Eastern airline with deep pockets made the same request? Could they even get exclusivity from the manufacturer for a certain number of guaranteed orders?

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: L0VE2FLY
Posted 2013-02-11 14:49:45 and read 6171 times.

Quoting phxa340 (Reply 1):
As far as your Lockheed wish .... keep dreaming

   Even if they, or any other manufacturer did, it'll be yet another boring twin-jet, nothing like the beautiful Tristar!

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: Aesma
Posted 2013-02-11 14:51:31 and read 6139 times.

Quoting CiC (Reply 36):
The last european airliner built mainly on the spec of the legacy carrier was the Vickers VC-10 on BOAC's spec... am I right?

Only Air Inter flew the Dassault Mercure but I don't know if they had anything to do with the design.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: UA735WL
Posted 2013-02-11 16:31:56 and read 4981 times.

Wasn't NW basically the only reason the DC-10-40 was built?

Another example is anything built in Soviet-era Russia- everything was designed solely for Aeroflot. ( not sure if that really counts though!)

[Edited 2013-02-11 16:56:13]

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: CapEd388
Posted 2013-02-11 18:23:31 and read 3793 times.

Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 45):
Not correct. Most went to DL but 38 MD-88s were built for customers other than DL.
Quoting olli (Reply 43):
Of course DL was/is the biggest operator (by far) of the MD-88 but not the only one:: Austral, AeroMéxico, Iberia (Aviaco previously), Midwest and Onur Air among a few others, also operated them.

I stand corrected. I should have said "mainly" instead of "solely". My apologies.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: HSVflier
Posted 2013-02-11 20:14:17 and read 2784 times.

I wouldnt be suprised if we see another large aerospace company enter the NB aircraft scene in the next 10 years. Especially if budget cuts go through on the defense side of the house i think it is possible a compnay like Lockheed or Northrop could look at jumping into the market. These companies already make aircraft and it would not take too much expansion to get larger lines to produce a commerical aricraft. Also, with orders being so backlogged it is also possible that one of these companies gets contracts from Airbus or Boeing to build additional NB frames. I can only imagine the Union issues there though.

maybe just wishful thinking but never say never.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: american 767
Posted 2013-02-11 21:35:15 and read 2590 times.

Quoting UA735WL (Reply 50):
Wasn't NW basically the only reason the DC-10-40 was built?

Likewise SAS was the only reason the DC-9-20 and -40 were built.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: 4holer
Posted 2013-02-12 06:47:13 and read 2243 times.

Quoting american 767 (Reply 53):
Quoting UA735WL (Reply 50):
Wasn't NW basically the only reason the DC-10-40 was built?


Likewise SAS was the only reason the DC-9-20 and -40 were built.

...And definitely the 707-138 for Qantas.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: olli
Posted 2013-02-12 06:57:42 and read 2214 times.

Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 45):
IB operated the shorter-fuselage, longer range MD-87, not the MD-88; 24 of the 75 MD-87s went to IB

That is inaccurate, Iberia operated the MD-88.

Best Regards,

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: Viscount724
Posted 2013-02-12 10:05:29 and read 2068 times.

Quoting olli (Reply 55):
Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 45):
IB operated the shorter-fuselage, longer range MD-87, not the MD-88; 24 of the 75 MD-87s went to IB

That is inaccurate, Iberia operated the MD-88.

Correct. I should have said "ordered" not "operated". The IB MD-88s were inherited from AVIACO, while IB was the largest original customer for the MD-87.

Topic: RE: Could AA Build Their Own Aircraft?
Username: NorthStarDC4M
Posted 2013-02-12 10:13:29 and read 2044 times.

Quoting american 767 (Reply 53):
Likewise SAS was the only reason the DC-9-20 and -40 were built.

-20 yes
-40 no, -40 was built to meet spec requests from SAS and Swissair, also bought by TOA Domestic

But lets not forget the Mercure for Air Inter...


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