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Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: AA737-823
Posted 2013-02-26 13:20:32 and read 26640 times.

This question has been rolling around in the back of my mind ever since UA made the initial 747 reorganization announcement.

UA management decided, some weeks ago, that the 747 fleet needs to be kept close to home (with limited exception, like LAX-SYD and ORD-HKG I believe) in San Fran, to maximize the availability of maintenance and spares, in an effort to improve dispatch reliability.
And since Thursday, 179 has been stuck at SYD, and (rumor has it) is FERRYING to SFO on the 27th.
See reply 37 in this thread: United/Cont. Existing Fleet Upgrade Status 15 (by iowaman Feb 19 2013 in Civil Aviation)
Of course, that's just one situation, and ferrying happens to all fleets at all carriers, so we can't conclude much from that one particular instance of ferry.
BUT... the overall theme here is that UA's 747's aren't particularly reliable.
Compare that with Lufthansa, who is now retiring 744's with 120,000 hours on the clocks! We never heard LH announce "Oh, well, these birds are old, we're basing all of them out of MUC to improve reliability."

My question is whether DELTA is experiencing similar issues, with their fleet of ex-NW 744's.
The last time I flew in a NW 744, N665US, it was in appalling condition, in terms of the limited things that a passenger (who happens to also be an airline mechanic) can see in the cabin and out the window.
I didn't have much respect for NW as an airline, except for their DC-9 expertise. Otherwise, I found all their planes to be completely shabby.

So I wonder if DL's 747 fleet is a problem child like UA's seems to be.

Any insights?

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: LAXintl
Posted 2013-02-26 13:26:55 and read 26628 times.

Simply put the 744 are yesterdays plane.

Besides United, the entire industry experiences lower reliability on the model compared to more contemporary fleets like the 777. (this is a fact and published by Boeing monthly).

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: TC957
Posted 2013-02-26 13:27:14 and read 26604 times.

Come on Boeing ! You need some good news now - make both UA and DL an offer for 748i's they can't possibly turn down.  

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: FWAERJ
Posted 2013-02-26 13:27:43 and read 26607 times.

DL refurbished all of their 744s a while back with new seats and AVOD in both classes.

That said, I don't think DL is having the same issues as UA.

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: Triple7Lr
Posted 2013-02-26 13:31:18 and read 26486 times.

Just curious when was the last time you were on a DL 47. They're actually pretty nice with the new mods.

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: FlyHossD
Posted 2013-02-26 13:32:28 and read 26428 times.

I've heard a recent rumor from the UA Training Department that a 777-300 order will happen this calendar year. The 773s will replace the 744s.

And if that's accurate, I'd guess the L-UAL order for A350s will be cancelled.

Some rumors come true, many don't. Please keep in mind the adage, "You get what you paid for" and this rumor was free!

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: phxa340
Posted 2013-02-26 13:37:04 and read 26308 times.

Quoting FlyHossD (Reply 5):

Unless Boeing can offer UA availability within a year, pay for the 350 cancellations and sell the 77W at practically a loss that rumor makes no sense.

Don't understand so many members obsession to can the A350 order ... It's going to be a great plane for UA. Lets move on ...

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: JimJupiter
Posted 2013-02-26 13:39:17 and read 26252 times.

Quoting AA737-823 (Thread starter):
Compare that with Lufthansa, who is now retiring 744's with 120,000 hours on the clocks! We never heard LH announce "Oh, well, these birds are old, we're basing all of them out of MUC to improve reliability."

Well, they're actually all based in FRA.  

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: CODC10
Posted 2013-02-26 13:41:51 and read 26208 times.

Quoting FWAERJ (Reply 3):


DL refurbished all of their 744s a while back with new seats and AVOD in both classes.
Quoting FWAERJ (Reply 3):
Just curious when was the last time you were on a DL 47. They're actually pretty nice with the new mods.

The interior and IFE are not the reason why UA's (or any operator's) 744 fleet generally has poorer reliability than its more modern stablemates, though the perception is certainly that United's 747s are bigger 'hangar queens' than Delta's.

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: kamboi
Posted 2013-02-26 13:42:13 and read 26144 times.

It's sad that the only 777 one sees at SFO are AF, JAL, SQ, EVA. No UA  

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: lightsaber
Posted 2013-02-26 14:08:13 and read 25904 times.

What are the hours on the UA planes? 747s are durable, but when they start to age, it is (purely in my opinion) a steeper 'knee in the curve' than with Douglas products.

The Airbus I've worked on aren't old enough for this discussion.   

Quoting phxa340 (Reply 6):
Unless Boeing can offer UA availability within a year, pay for the 350 cancellations and sell the 77W at practically a loss that rumor makes no sense.

Exactly. UA is going with the A350 which is a great plane for their needs.
So is the 787...   

What is the issue UA is having? I'm not hearing anything engine related... What is the cause?

Lightsaber

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: FlyCaledonian
Posted 2013-02-26 14:08:54 and read 25897 times.

Isn't DL's 744 fleet quite under utilised, so that slack would surely help them by having more spares? UA seems to use their fleet more intensively, so basing them out of SFO makes more sense.

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: LAXintl
Posted 2013-02-26 14:09:26 and read 25903 times.

Here are some reliability stats for period ending December 2012.

Fleet average was 98.30%

Some airlines -
Air France - 97.32
ANA - 99.25
BA - 97.59
Cathay - 97.94
China - 98.67
Delta - 97.76
El Al - 96.17
EVA - 99.61
Korean - 99.78
Lufthansa - 98.92
KLM - 98.82
Malaysia - 97.52
Qantas - 97.42
United - 97.56
Virgin - 98.46

In comparison the 777 fleet average was 99.32

For those wondering how this is measured, it takes the total cancellations, air turn backs, maintenance diversions, divided by total scheduled departures.

To add some color, that 1.0 variance between the 744 and 777 is huge.
It basically means an average of 3.5 additional cancellations, diversions, or air turnback incidents annually for each aircraft per year. In otherwords the 744 will go AOG significantly more frequently then the 777.

Quoting kamboi (Reply 9):
It's sad that the only 777 one sees at SFO are AF, JAL, SQ, EVA. No UA

I was there the other day. Something like 4-5 UA 777s were around.

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: panamair
Posted 2013-02-26 14:12:32 and read 25806 times.

Quoting kamboi (Reply 9):
It's sad that the only 777 one sees at SFO are AF, JAL, SQ, EVA. No UA

Huh? SFO-KIX is currently a 777...the new SFO-TPE starting this summer will also be a 777, as will the second SFO-NRT this summer...

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: brilondon
Posted 2013-02-26 14:13:40 and read 25816 times.

Quoting phxa340 (Reply 6):
Unless Boeing can offer UA availability within a year, pay for the 350 cancellations and sell the 77W at practically a loss that rumor makes no sense.

Why would they have to basically have to give the planes away for free? Who said they were cancelling the A350 deal? You just spouting wishes or are these statements facts you can back up?

[Edited 2013-02-26 14:51:02]

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: B727FA
Posted 2013-02-26 14:14:16 and read 25771 times.

Quoting AA737-823 (Thread starter):

I would say the DL dispatch rate is pretty high and is reliable as a fleet. Additionally, as a mechanic, you would know that "shabby" doesn't mean "unreliable" or "bad."

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: Norcal773
Posted 2013-02-26 14:28:28 and read 25543 times.

Quoting kamboi (Reply 9):
It's sad that the only 777 one sees at SFO are AF, JAL, SQ, EVA. No UA

You obviously haven't been to SFO lately!

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: jayunited
Posted 2013-02-26 14:36:02 and read 25438 times.

Quoting AA737-823 (Thread starter):
BUT... the overall theme here is that UA's 747's aren't particularly reliable.

I would agree with your post if you had posted this last year, because it would have been true. However ever since UA started moving the 744 to SFO the dispatch reliability of the 744 has greatly improved because that is where the main maintenance base for the 744 is located.

Quoting AA737-823 (Thread starter):
We never heard LH announce "Oh, well, these birds are old, we're basing all of them out of MUC to improve reliability."

Well of course you have never heard of LH doing this because they already are doing this most (not all) of their 744 are based out of FRA so they don't need to announce it. UA back in the day use to have 744 bases at ORD, SFO, LAX, and they use to fly them out of DEN, IAD, and HNL although i'm not sure if those stations were ever 744 bases. So there is nothing strange about UA's announcement and you can't compare UA to LH because LH flies international mostly from FRA, MUC, and DUS. While UA now fly international from EWR, IAD, IAH, ORD, LAX, SFO, HNL, and SEA so the announcement makes sense.

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: PHX787
Posted 2013-02-26 14:54:43 and read 25152 times.

Quoting FWAERJ (Reply 3):
DL refurbished all of their 744s a while back with new seats and AVOD in both classes.

I heard the 747 is going to be staying with DL for at least 10 more years so they seem to have it under control.

Flying her next month DTW-NRT   

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 1):
Simply put the 744 are yesterdays plane.

Besides United, the entire industry experiences lower reliability on the model compared to more contemporary fleets like the 777. (this is a fact and published by Boeing monthly).

It also kinda puts the 748i in perspective....if the 77W or 77L can't handle the capacity that the 744 has, then I'm going to expect UA to eventually order the 748i once they begin retiring their 744s.

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: phxa340
Posted 2013-02-26 14:59:55 and read 25093 times.

Quoting brilondon (Reply 14):

How about you read the statement I was responding to before responding all high and mighty.      

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: brilondon
Posted 2013-02-26 15:10:56 and read 24930 times.

Quoting phxa340 (Reply 19):

Quoting brilondon (Reply 14):

How about you read the statement I was responding to before responding all high and mighty.      

I was asking for a source for your facts and I find your comments rather rude and I certainly was not being all high and mighty.

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: 777STL
Posted 2013-02-26 15:16:22 and read 24864 times.

Quoting brilondon (Reply 20):
I was asking for a source for your facts and I find your comments rather rude and I certainly was not being all high and mighty.

You're out of line here. Why don't you try reading what he actually wrote before you light him up? You guys basically agree with each other - he was questioning the veracity of that rumor just as you were. Relax.

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: COSPN
Posted 2013-02-26 15:22:01 and read 24817 times.

Quoting AA737-823 (Thread starter):
(with limited exception, like LAX-SYD and ORD-HKG I believe)

Is ORD-HKG going to be a 744 all summer ? I thought all 744 is moving to SFO and the one SFO-SYD-LAX run ??

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: flightsimer
Posted 2013-02-26 15:26:24 and read 24717 times.

Quoting brilondon (Reply 20):

I'm siding with PHX here. He said nothing that would require a source. Unless Boeing was to offer United a great deal they couldn't refuse, their would be no reason for them to switch is what he said (paraphrasing).

However, let's not forget that the 350's were ordered prior to the merger. Since then, united has gone on the record (last year) as saying the A350-900 will no longer be replacing the 747's and that they were looking at the 777-x, A350-1000 and 747-8i as as replacements now.

However, they did not say they were going to drop the -900's if they ordered something else as the replacement.

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: AADC10
Posted 2013-02-26 15:36:18 and read 25405 times.

I hope the UA 744 dispatch reliability problems are not related to the outsourcing to China of their heavy maintenance.

Quoting FlyHossD (Reply 5):
And if that's accurate, I'd guess the L-UAL order for A350s will be cancelled.

I doubt that UA would order the 773 or cancel the A350. The A350 is at least a half generation ahead of the 773. The A350 order was also connected to an A319/320 order that was cancelled in Ch. 11. Part of the settlement was the A350 order, so it will cost far more than the typical cancellation fee to drop the order.

Quoting kamboi (Reply 9):
It's sad that the only 777 one sees at SFO are AF, JAL, SQ, EVA. No UA

I believe that SFO-KIX and SFO-PVG are usually operated with a 772.

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: jumpjets
Posted 2013-02-26 15:39:42 and read 25773 times.

Quoting AA737-823 (Thread starter):
UA management decided, some weeks ago, that the 747 fleet needs to be kept close to home

I certainly saw one coming into LHR one day within the last week - so not so close to home. Does the reasonable number of UA flights to LHR each day mean they keep more spares here than at other destinations?

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: sac
Posted 2013-02-26 15:46:27 and read 26125 times.

Delta ferried one from TLV-JFK last Saturday.

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: LAXintl
Posted 2013-02-26 15:53:06 and read 26349 times.

Quoting panamair (Reply 13):
Huh? SFO-KIX is currently a 777...the new SFO-TPE starting this summer will also be a 777, as will the second SFO-NRT this summer...

Actually TPE was to be 744 when launched but with 787 delays it got downgauged. But KIX going to 744 in April.

But there are certainly other UA SFO 777 services still - like LHR, domestic flights and plus NRT and TPE as mentioned.

Quoting PHX787 (Reply 18):
I heard the 747 is going to be staying with DL for at least 10 more years so they seem to have it under control.

God help them. In 10-years those frames will be pushing 35 years in age.

Quoting COSPN (Reply 23):
Is ORD-HKG going to be a 744 all summer ?

Switches to 777 end of March.

Quoting COSPN (Reply 23):
and the one SFO-SYD-LAX run ??

LAX-SYD stays 744. LAX is the sole other 744 crew base outside SFO.

Also for the summer HNL-NRT will run on a 744.

Quoting AADC10 (Reply 25):
I hope the UA 744 dispatch reliability problems are not related to the outsourcing to China of their heavy maintenance.

If anything the Asian operators tend to have the highest fleet reliability.

Anyhow DL sends its to Singapore.

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: modesto2
Posted 2013-02-26 15:55:08 and read 26303 times.

I can't speak about dispatch reliability, but as far as the cabin is concerned, DL's 747s are great with their recent mods. The 747 flat-bed is the most comfortable in the DL fleet, and I'll gladly take an upper deck seat any day. With these cabin mods, DL is certainly committed to the 747 fleet for the near future.

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: United1
Posted 2013-02-26 16:01:04 and read 26243 times.

Quoting jumpjets (Reply 26):
Quoting AA737-823 (Thread starter):
UA management decided, some weeks ago, that the 747 fleet needs to be kept close to home

I certainly saw one coming into LHR one day within the last week - so not so close to home. Does the reasonable number of UA flights to LHR each day mean they keep more spares here than at other destinations?

UA is basing the 744s at SFO (which is one of UAs MTC centers) but they continue to fly them to Europe, Asia and Australia. The theory is that by basing them at UAs 744 MTC center the reliability will tick up a bit until UA can replace them with something newer. I don't think they keep any spare aircraft at LHR but IIRC UA does have a parts warehouse there.

Quoting AADC10 (Reply 25):
Quoting FlyHossD (Reply 5):
And if that's accurate, I'd guess the L-UAL order for A350s will be cancelled.

I doubt that UA would order the 773 or cancel the A350. The A350 is at least a half generation ahead of the 773. The A350 order was also connected to an A319/320 order that was cancelled in Ch. 11. Part of the settlement was the A350 order, so it will cost far more than the typical cancellation fee to drop the order.

I can't see any reason why they would cancel the A350 even if they were to order the 77W/748 to replace the 744. At worst they simply delay taking delivery of them (something that is built into the contract) and use them as a 772 replacement when the time comes.

Quoting AA737-823 (Thread starter):
.

Based on the numbers that LAXint posted UAs seem to be about the same as DLs....a .2% difference between the two airlines. UAs 744s seem to have the same level of dispatch reliability as QF, BA and AF so I don't think the reliability issues are all that much of an issue. I kind of find you asking if UAs 744s are junk as being a bit rude...you really should consider changing the title.

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: jayunited
Posted 2013-02-26 16:08:40 and read 26102 times.

Quoting jumpjets (Reply 26):
Quoting AA737-823 (Thread starter):
UA management decided, some weeks ago, that the 747 fleet needs to be kept close to home

I certainly saw one coming into LHR one day within the last week - so not so close to home. Does the reasonable number of UA flights to LHR each day mean they keep more spares here than at other destinations?

Close to home does not mean that the aircraft doesn't ever leave SFO.   

And UA does not keep spare 744 in LHR nor any other type. All aircraft that UA sends to LHR are back on U.S. soil the following day.

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: MaverickM11
Posted 2013-02-26 16:17:53 and read 25809 times.

Quoting United1 (Reply 30):
I kind of find you asking if UAs 744s are junk as being a bit rude...you really should consider changing the title.

I think anyone flying or trying to fly ORDNRT/HKG in the last couple years would find the moniker quite apt 

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: United1
Posted 2013-02-26 16:19:34 and read 25675 times.

Quoting MaverickM11 (Reply 32):
I think anyone flying or trying to fly ORDNRT/HKG in the last couple years would find the moniker quite apt 

....I've flown both those routes multiple times in the past few years   One MTC delay and three ATC/Weather issues...the other flights were fine.

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: kamboi
Posted 2013-02-26 16:22:26 and read 25486 times.

Quoting panamair (Reply 13):

I was there yesterday for almost 2 hours and watched all the heavy take offs and landings and non was a UA777

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: kamboi
Posted 2013-02-26 16:23:46 and read 25452 times.

Quoting Norcal773 (Reply 16):

was there yesterday and on saturday

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: ikramerica
Posted 2013-02-26 16:26:47 and read 25411 times.

Quoting United1 (Reply 30):
I can't see any reason why they would cancel the A350 even if they were to order the 77W/748 to replace the 744. At worst they simply delay taking delivery of them (something that is built into the contract) and use them as a 772 replacement when the time comes.

That is exactly what will happen. UA has a large fleet of 767 and 777 needing to be replaced. The 787 and A350 can do that. pmUAs claim that the A359 could replace the 747 was unbelievable. I always saw it as a place holder statement for what the future would really bring, without UA having to make a decision. They knew they would need A350s, and wanted to order them, but didn't want to tip their hat about what the future might bring, for at least the reason of not tipping the unions of their plans.

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: United1
Posted 2013-02-26 16:28:15 and read 25239 times.

Quoting kamboi (Reply 34):
I was there yesterday for almost 2 hours and watched all the heavy take offs and landings and non was a UA777

KIX, PVG and 2 of the HNL flights are on the 777 still...I am not sure if there are any other UA 777 flights out of SFO any longer.

Topic: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: LAXintl
Posted 2013-02-26 16:32:38 and read 25170 times.

You picked a bad time.

UA 777 scheduled movements on Monday:

0835 UA858 PVG-SFO
0842 UA663 SFO-HNL
1008 UA201 SFO-HNL
1100 UA886 KIX-SFO
1120 UA885 SFO-KIX
1310 UA857 SFO-PVG
2023 UA724 HNL-SFO

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: Roseflyer
Posted 2013-02-26 16:53:29 and read 24497 times.

First off, I appreciate the fact that you are talking about airplane reliability and not the often posted comment of UA's 747s are archaic because they don't have PTVs in Y.

One of the problems that UA has is that the 747 fleet is so small. In peak season, they typically only have 1 spare airplane. Having the fleet split between ORD and SFO means it is challenging to cover one airplane going out of service due to reliability problems. I think operational flexibility is why they are moving them to SFO and not because of a dramatic drop off in reliability numbers.

Overall, the UA fleet has a relatively good dispatch reliability. The low utilization during most of the year helps this a lot. There are spare aircraft to cover mechanical problems. UA in the past operated a SFO-ORD-SFO route to help cover the 747s in case one went out of service. They essentially flew the second spare so that it would be in SFO in the morning in case they expected any maintenance problems with one of the inbound Asia arrivals, and then they moved it to ORD so that it could be dispatched in place of one of the ORD routes. This was relatively inefficient having a sacrificial airplane in the network. Another factor is that the 747 is the only airplane with enough capacity to cover one of the 2 class 777s. If one of those is out of service, they need to use the 747 to HNL.

20 year old airplanes always have more mechanical problems. UA was relatively unique with its hub structure in that it was using 747s out of two hubs. Almost every other airline limits its 747s to a single hub. Even DL limits the 747 to the NRT hub. LH uses 747s mostly out of FRA. BA out of LHR. CX out of HKG.... Splitting the hubs, splitting the spares causes inefficiency in a small fleet.

UA's 767s were even worse than the 747. Multiple hubs, small fleet, and operating to airports with no maintenance support caused those airplanes to have very bad dispatch reliability.

[Edited 2013-02-26 16:55:01]

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: avek00
Posted 2013-02-26 16:54:06 and read 24488 times.

Quoting lightsaber (Reply 10):
What is the issue UA is having? I'm not hearing anything engine related... What is the cause?

Many years of poor utilization, and underinvestment on maintenance during United's decade of hell (2000-2010).

1. Utilization -- until the fleet was halved by the end of the bankruptcy proceedings, United would routinely operate 747s on routes like IAD-ORD, ORD-DEN and DEN-SFO/LAX. On a one-off basis, that's no big deal. But do that for a span of months into years, and you're running up the cycle counts (and wear and tear) on your fleet.

2. Maintenance -- when United's fortunes turned south, the airline focused more on reactive than preventative maintenance. Over time, this results in a fleet more prone to maintenance troubles.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: YYZAMS
Posted 2013-02-26 17:11:02 and read 24058 times.

Quoting lightsaber (Reply 10):
Exactly. UA is going with the A350 which is a great plane for their needs.
So is the 787...   

What is the seating plan like for UA's A350? or A350 in general?

I know it varies by airline but I like most of the A330s because they have 2 seats near the window and not 3.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: AA737-823
Posted 2013-02-26 17:36:18 and read 23413 times.

Wow, everybody, thanks for the replies.

Quoting FWAERJ (Reply 3):
DL refurbished all of their 744s a while back with new seats and AVOD in both classes.
Quoting Triple7Lr (Reply 4):

Just curious when was the last time you were on a DL 47. They're actually pretty nice with the new mods.

Indeed, they are much better NOW; sadly, I'm a Star Alliance captive flyer, so I won't get the chance to sample them!

Quoting FlyHossD (Reply 5):
Some rumors come true, many don't. Please keep in mind the adage, "You get what you paid for" and this rumor was free!

Time will tell whether this rumor was worth what you paid or not! I'm still holding out for a 748i order!

Quoting JimJupiter (Reply 7):
Well, they're actually all based in FRA.

My comment was meant both as a joke, AND as a compliment to Lufthansa's maintenance capabilities.

Quoting B727FA (Reply 15):
I would say the DL dispatch rate is pretty high and is reliable as a fleet. Additionally, as a mechanic, you would know that "shabby" doesn't mean "unreliable" or "bad."

Certainly, but they SOMETIMES go hand-in-hand.

Quoting jayunited (Reply 17):
I would agree with your post if you had posted this last year, because it would have been true. However ever since UA started moving the 744 to SFO the dispatch reliability of the 744 has greatly improved because that is where the main maintenance base for the 744 is located.
Quoting jayunited (Reply 17):
Well of course you have never heard of LH doing this because they already are doing this most (not all) of their 744 are based out of FRA so they don't need to announce it. UA back in the day use to have 744 bases at ORD, SFO, LAX, and they use to fly them out of DEN, IAD, and HNL although i'm not sure if those stations were ever 744 bases. So there is nothing strange about UA's announcement and you can't compare UA to LH because LH flies international mostly from FRA, MUC, and DUS. While UA now fly international from EWR, IAD, IAH, ORD, LAX, SFO, HNL, and SEA so the announcement makes sense.

You're missing my point; my point is that other carriers can maintain 747s anywhere in the world, yet somehow, United can only keep the fleet going if it is based in SFO??? Odd.

Quoting AADC10 (Reply 25):
I hope the UA 744 dispatch reliability problems are not related to the outsourcing to China of their heavy maintenance.

They are not related; the Chinese are fast becoming the preeminent aircraft maintenance experts. As a mechanic, it pains me to be faced with that situation, but it is becoming the reality, whether I like it or not.

Quoting jumpjets (Reply 26):
I certainly saw one coming into LHR one day within the last week - so not so close to home.

Did you somehow interpret my post as suggesting that they did SFO-SFO flightseeing trips?

Quoting modesto2 (Reply 29):
I can't speak about dispatch reliability, but as far as the cabin is concerned, DL's 747s are great with their recent mods. The 747 flat-bed is the most comfortable in the DL fleet, and I'll gladly take an upper deck seat any day. With these cabin mods, DL is certainly committed to the 747 fleet for the near future.

Indeed, and I'm glad. A 747 is a fantastic airplane, having formerly been a mechanic on them! Love 'em!

Quoting United1 (Reply 30):
UA is basing the 744s at SFO (which is one of UAs MTC centers) but they continue to fly them to Europe, Asia and Australia.

Astute.

Quoting United1 (Reply 30):
I kind of find you asking if UAs 744s are junk as being a bit rude...you really should consider changing the title.

Sorry to have hurt you; lucky for you, the mods changed my title to something more milquetoast.

Quoting jayunited (Reply 31):
Close to home does not mean that the aircraft doesn't ever leave SFO.

Thank you!

Quoting Roseflyer (Reply 39):
One of the problems that UA has is that the 747 fleet is so small.

If this is the case, then why are there lots of ex-UA 744's sitting in Arizona? Would it make sense to reclaim some of those aircraft, rather than leave them for scrap? I'm sure they were rejected in bankruptcy, but I wonder if something can be done about getting a couple of them back in the fleet, for situations such as this...

Quoting YYZAMS (Reply 41):
What is the seating plan like for UA's A350?

No one knows yet.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: jetjack74
Posted 2013-02-26 17:57:47 and read 22936 times.

Quoting PHX787 (Reply 18):
I heard the 747 is going to be staying with DL for at least 10 more years so they seem to have it under control.

Uhhhhhh, highly unlikely there slim.

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 28):

Quoting PHX787 (Reply 18):
I heard the 747 is going to be staying with DL for at least 10 more years so they seem to have it under control.

God help them. In 10-years those frames will be pushing 35 years in age.

Yeah I highly doubt they'll be going that long. They're on lease for 5 years, and I think the highest-time airframes will be leaving the fleet about that time.

Quoting AA737-823 (Thread starter):
My question is whether DELTA is experiencing similar issues, with their fleet of ex-NW 744's.
The last time I flew in a NW 744, N665US, it was in appalling condition, in terms of the limited things that a passenger (who happens to also be an airline mechanic) can see in the cabin and out the window.
I didn't have much respect for NW as an airline, except for their DC-9 expertise. Otherwise, I found all their planes to be completely shabby.

So I wonder if DL's 747 fleet is a problem child like UA's seems to be.

I've flown a few 747 trips, from regular trips SEA-NRT and a few charters here and I haven't noticed any delays on the part of the aircraft. Of course that doesn't represent accurate statistics, but I haven't noted anything out of the ordinary of recent times. Most of the problems associated with our 767/747/A330 aircraft were non-critical items, such as IFE, reading lamps, inop ovens and other relatively minor things. But most of those problems were addressed with the reconfiguring of the aircraft

[Edited 2013-02-26 18:00:23]

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: 9V-SVC
Posted 2013-02-26 17:58:19 and read 22930 times.

Quoting FlyHossD (Reply 5):
I've heard a recent rumor from the UA Training Department that a 777-300 order will happen this calendar year. The 773s will replace the 744s.

Nonsense, why will UÃ order the 773 when this aircraft is lacking of range and less fuel efficient than the 77W?

77W makes more sense but even so, I doubt very much your rumour is true. If they wanted to order, they would have already done so quite some time ago.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: jayunited
Posted 2013-02-26 18:00:27 and read 22896 times.

Quoting AA737-823 (Reply 43):
You're missing my point; my point is that other carriers can maintain 747s anywhere in the world, yet somehow, United can only keep the fleet going if it is based in SFO??? Odd.

Really which airlines?

BA: all their 744 are based and maintained out of LHR
AF: their 744 based and maintained out of CDG
LH: most of their 744 based and maintained out of FRA
CX: HKG based and maintained
SQ: when they had 744 based and maintained out of SIN
JL: NRT

The list of airlines goes on and on and they are all based out of one central location if you get my point and see the parallel.

United will still be flying these 744 all over to places like LHR,FRA, SYD, NRT, KIX, PVG, PEK, ICN, HKG, LAX, HNL and there might be a few more stations that I am forgetting. There will be no difference in what United intends to do starting this spring and in what other airlines are already doing. Uniteds 744 fleet will be based out of SFO.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: anrec80
Posted 2013-02-26 18:08:50 and read 22690 times.

Quoting AA737-823 (Thread starter):
BUT... the overall theme here is that UA's 747's aren't particularly reliable.
Compare that with Lufthansa, who is now retiring 744's with 120,000 hours on the clocks! We never heard LH announce "Oh, well, these birds are old, we're basing all of them out of MUC to improve reliability."

I don't believe LH is basing any 744 in MUC or DUS. They are all in FRA  ))

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: AA737-823
Posted 2013-02-26 18:17:43 and read 22472 times.

Quoting jayunited (Reply 46):
The list of airlines goes on and on and they are all based out of one central location if you get my point and see the parallel.

I see your point, but you're still missing mine. Other airlines do what they wish with their fleet, meanwhile, United finds it necessary to base the planes out of home-base, rather than keep them (and crew bases) at other hubs as well.

Quoting jayunited (Reply 46):
There will be no difference in what United intends to do starting this spring and in what other airlines are already doing.

Delta has major 747 ops in NRT, DTW, ATL, etc. United relegates them to SFO, with much more limited exception.

Quoting anrec80 (Reply 47):
I don't believe LH is basing any 744 in MUC or DUS. They are all in FRA

Again, it was a joke used as an illustration. I wish LH would base all of theirs at SFO or LAX- then we UA flyers could have the nice LH 744/748 product as an alternative to riding in the dark ages in Y on a UA 744!!!

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: LAXintl
Posted 2013-02-26 18:23:04 and read 22402 times.

The comment about UA 744 schedules and basing are very accurate.

Unlike most 744 operators that have a single home bases, the UA fleet tended to float around the network across hubs without a single maintenance focal point.

This combined with the aircraft age produced growing reliability issues. As mentioned the UA 744 was not the sole one that suffered. The 3-class 763 fleet faced similar issues including the fact that its most frequent ly visited station of IAD was virtually all made up of quick turns, and IAD also had virtually zero heavy maintenance infrastructure.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: n7371f
Posted 2013-02-26 18:23:37 and read 22402 times.

Is it possible that UA's problems with 744 reliability could be related to the Glenn Tilton years? Obviously UA kept up with all mandated maintenance but as even Smisek has mentioned, UA pull backed on some preventative maintenance during bankruptcy and one of the merger's issues has been bringing the PMUA fleet up to PMCO's standards. Just a thought...my pals down in MCO at CO Technical Ops don't hear much about the 744's but they do tell me that UA's 757's are in pretty sad shape in some cases.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: tommy767
Posted 2013-02-26 18:25:05 and read 22319 times.

Quoting n7371f (Reply 50):

No. That's just a a.net myth. UA had better operational stats than CO post BK right before the merger.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: Stitch
Posted 2013-02-26 18:39:43 and read 21846 times.

Quoting FlyHossD (Reply 5):
I've heard a recent rumor from the UA Training Department that a 777-300 order will happen this calendar year. The 773s will replace the 744s.
Quoting 9V-SVC (Reply 45):
Nonsense, why will UÃ order the 773 when this aircraft is lacking of range and less fuel efficient than the 77W?

I am sure they were referring to the 777-300ER.

Boeing no longer formally offer the 777-300 for sale.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: davidho1985
Posted 2013-02-26 19:02:02 and read 21323 times.

Quoting jayunited (Reply 46):
BA: all their 744 are based and maintained out of LHR
AF: their 744 based and maintained out of CDG
LH: most of their 744 based and maintained out of FRA
CX: HKG based and maintained
SQ: when they had 744 based and maintained out of SIN
JL: NRT

The list of airlines goes on and on and they are all based out of one central location if you get my point and see the parallel.

More or less because these airlines only have one hub or only have one hub which can support 747 flights

[Edited 2013-02-26 19:02:23]

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: AA737-823
Posted 2013-02-26 19:20:29 and read 20721 times.

Quoting tommy767 (Reply 51):
No. That's just a a.net myth. UA had better operational stats than CO post BK right before the merger.

Hardly. I've flown on sUA 757-222's; excepting the ones that have been through refresh, they're junk.
They may have dispatch numbers that look good, sure. But there's more to maintenance--good maintenance--than simple airworthiness.

Quoting davidho1985 (Reply 53):
More or less because these airlines only have one hub or only have one hub which can support 747 flights

Bingo!

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: catiii
Posted 2013-02-26 19:28:16 and read 20478 times.

Mods: the thread title is misleading. UA has dispatch rates on par with the industry. maybe change the title to something along the lines of " comparing UA and DL 744 dispatch rates."

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: tommy767
Posted 2013-02-26 19:37:06 and read 20386 times.

Quoting AA737-823 (Reply 54):

Hardly. I've flown on sUA 757-222's; excepting the ones that have been through refresh, they're junk.
They may have dispatch numbers that look good, sure. But there's more to maintenance--good maintenance--than simple airworthiness.

Um, Your opinion? Last year I flew EWR-MIA, IAH-EWR, LAX-EWR, EWR-LAX, LAX-ORD on PMUA 757 with absolutely no MX delays whatsoever.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: Norcal773
Posted 2013-02-26 19:55:34 and read 19964 times.

Quoting kamboi (Reply 35):
was there yesterday and on saturday

That doesn't mean they don;t have any. SFO-KIX departs at around 11:30 daily and it's a 777, as is an SFO-IAD in the morning. There could be more but was there two weeks ago and saw two depart in a span of an hour.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: glbltrvlr
Posted 2013-02-26 20:03:45 and read 19866 times.

Quoting avek00 (Reply 40):
1. Utilization -- until the fleet was halved by the end of the bankruptcy proceedings, United would routinely operate 747s on routes like IAD-ORD, ORD-DEN and DEN-SFO/LAX. On a one-off basis, that's no big deal. But do that for a span of months into years, and you're running up the cycle counts (and wear and tear) on your fleet.

The limiting factor for long haul aircraft is hours, not cycle counts. That's why some airlines add tag on flights for crew proficiency and why they make good freighter conversions. As long as you keep the hours and cycles balanced you get the maximum life out of the aircraft.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: CALTECH
Posted 2013-02-26 20:13:44 and read 19650 times.

Quoting n7371f (Reply 50):
Is it possible that UA's problems with 744 reliability could be related to the Glenn Tilton years? Obviously UA kept up with all mandated maintenance but as even Smisek has mentioned, UA pull backed on some preventative maintenance during bankruptcy and one of the merger's issues has been bringing the PMUA fleet up to PMCO's standards. Just a thought...my pals down in MCO at CO Technical Ops don't hear much about the 744's but they do tell me that UA's 757's are in pretty sad shape in some cases.

Absolutely, no matter what the uninformed think, it is no myth. The shabbiness of the exteriors and interiors was a sight to see.United maintained them safely, but the horrid paint and interiors screamed of neglect. Some of the aircraft just out of overhaul looked good, but the rest of them, ugh. Reminded some of us of the late 80s and most of the 90s at Continental. Things have become much better, could be because of the Pilot Contract passing though.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: MaverickM11
Posted 2013-02-26 20:53:21 and read 18929 times.

Quoting tommy767 (Reply 51):
Quoting n7371f (Reply 50):

No. That's just a a.net myth. UA had better operational stats than CO post BK right before the merger.


"Folks that's the news and I'm outta here!" -- Dennis Miller

It was so little, so late, that it's hardly worth mentioning.

Quoting AA737-823 (Reply 54):
They may have dispatch numbers that look good, sure. But there's more to maintenance--good maintenance--than simple airworthiness.

Check the DOT stats...they certainly weren't making any numbers look good

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: PSU.DTW.SCE
Posted 2013-02-26 21:24:13 and read 18430 times.

We can all sit here and debate numbers and perception, but it will be difficult to come anything conclusive to declare the either UA or DL's 744s (or 757s or DC-9s, or A320, etc) are "junk".

There will always be differences in dispatch relability between fleet types. Almost always will older fleets has lower dispatch reliability. Widebodies often to do. As long as it is within an acceptable range and if there are sufficient plans in place to back-up flights then it can be managed.

At NW, the DC-10s in the later part of their career had the the lowest dispatch relability of any fleet type. Surprisingly the 757 was the lowest amongst narrowbodies. The DC-9 was only beaten by the A319 in terms of dispatch reliability up through the mid-2000s.

In the case on long haul international flights it makes sense to have back-up spare frames available to rotate through maintenance at certain points in the network. Operating a far-flung diperse operation makes it difficult to back-up flights.

It is really hard to say about DL's 744s because they were still NW's TPAC workhorse up throught he merger (and still are today). DL spent a significant of money to upgrade the interiors to fly them for another 5-7 years. NW never really worked them too hard, and since 2008 their utilization has dropped significantly.

[Edited 2013-02-26 21:30:00]

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: N505FX
Posted 2013-02-26 21:24:14 and read 18440 times.

Quoting AA737-823 (Reply 43):
They are not related; the Chinese are fast becoming the preeminent aircraft maintenance experts. As a mechanic, it pains me to be faced with that situation, but it is becoming the reality, whether I like it or not.

Yeah, think about how everyone is in love with their iPhones and marvels over the precision build...the Chinese are capable of engineering, mechanical work, assembly etc that bests the U.S. , they just don't demand U.S. union salaries and work rules...

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: PHX787
Posted 2013-02-26 21:49:34 and read 18096 times.

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 28):
God help them. In 10-years those frames will be pushing 35 years in age.
Quoting jetjack74 (Reply 44):
Uhhhhhh, highly unlikely there slim.
Quoting jetjack74 (Reply 44):
Yeah I highly doubt they'll be going that long. They're on lease for 5 years, and I think the highest-time airframes will be leaving the fleet about that time.

Yeah I guess you guys are right, what I heard was hearsay. 5 years sounds better, but what will they replace those flights with? Last I heard the 747s were always quite full, especially to Japan. What are they going to replace those with? 77Ws?

They'd be better off with a few 748s.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: FlyDeltaJets
Posted 2013-02-26 21:59:31 and read 18032 times.

Quoting United1 (Reply 30):
LHR but IIRC UA does have a parts warehouse there.

We do have stores in LHR

As of today there are 3 747s OOS and 1 of those is because of painting and the other due to heavy check.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: AA737-823
Posted 2013-02-26 22:04:22 and read 17899 times.

Quoting tommy767 (Reply 56):
Um, Your opinion?

No, my observation; sidewalls falling off of the airframe, exit door trims missing, malfunctioning galleys... none of these are opinion. Your unyielding allegiance to everything UA does is, however, opinion.

Quoting catiii (Reply 55):
Mods: the thread title is misleading.

Seriously? Perhaps you're a shareholder, but the fact of the matter is that UA issued a PRESS RELEASE stating that they were relocating the 747 fleet to SFO in ORDER TO improve fleet reliability. And with one AOG in SYD for nearly a week, then ferrying home, we've got a spot-on thread title.


The fact that I can't ask a simple questions without some of you people managing to turn it into a pmCO versus pmUA bashing thread is very aggravating, and I'd politely suggest that those of you who wish to do so find another hobby.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: CALPSAFltSkeds
Posted 2013-02-26 22:13:56 and read 17783 times.

I don't see the big deal. United decided to move most 744 operations to SFO for ease of maintenance, commonality and probably marketing reasons. Asia/Australia has always demanded more 744 aircraft and UA is accommodating. The SFO-TATL flights must have good enough demand for the 744.

United is going to do something similar at HNL with 9 772A units in a new Hawaiian config, of which 5-7 may be on the ground at the same time. I think these are smart moves, not an indication of poor maint, etc. Commonality of these moves are also felt on ORD/IAD/EWR-TATL/Asia flights with 764 and 772 aircraft. Other good moves were the 763 getting fitted for Intl service and the 753s taking over a lot of Hawaiian routes. Much of this is a benefit of the merger and utilizing aircraft where they can make the most money and be well maintained.

Sure the 744s are getting up there in age and older aircraft have more maintenance issues and require more work. they'll be gone in a few years, but can fly productively of out SFO.

Marketing-wise, the lack of AVOD in Y may be something UA has chosen to pretty much place on their SFO flyers. Good or bad, UA is the big U. S Carrier at SFO and passengers may be locked in. All airlines make similar moves.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: tommy767
Posted 2013-02-26 22:27:09 and read 17580 times.

Quoting MaverickM11 (Reply 60):

It was so little, so late, that it's hardly worth mentioning.
Quoting AA737-823 (Reply 65):

No, my observation; sidewalls falling off of the airframe, exit door trims missing, malfunctioning galleys... none of these are opinion. Your unyielding allegiance to everything UA does is, however, opinion.

Well, in my experience the only non functioning things I've seen on a PMUA 757 were the wall paper in the bathroom -- and that wouldn't even count it's just hideous.

Actually speaking of the new mods on the 763s, when I flew EWR-IAH I noticed one of the BRAND NEW exit signage fell off and wasn't replaced before departure. How do you explain that? They are brand new.

Haha, seriously do you guys hit each other up via cell phone to pounce whenever anyone sticks up for pre merger UA MX policies? It's hilarious that once I provide the other side of the perspective, I get pounced on. It's like cat nip.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: TrijetsRMissed
Posted 2013-02-26 22:31:59 and read 17582 times.

Quoting PHX787 (Reply 63):
Last I heard the 747s were always quite full, especially to Japan. What are they going to replace those with? 77Ws?

They'd be better off with a few 748s.

Knowing DL, it could be more 744s - of the younger/later-build variety. But from an enthusiasts perspective, I sure hope a 748I order is in the cards.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: AA737-823
Posted 2013-02-27 01:05:06 and read 15786 times.

Quoting tommy767 (Reply 67):
Haha, seriously do you guys hit each other up via cell phone to pounce whenever anyone sticks up for pre merger UA MX policies? It's hilarious that once I provide the other side of the perspective, I get pounced on. It's like cat nip.

No, in all seriousness, I don't. I'm an elite on UA, so I feel like I know first-hand their strengths and weaknesses. Just as CO had things they were bad at, so did UA... and cabin maintenance was one of them.

Back on topic, we know from UA itself that 747 dispatch was disappointing, and so they made some changes. I didn't ask a single question about anything having to do with that; I asked whether DL, who also inherited some sub-par cabined 747's in a merger, had similar issues.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: SIA747Megatop
Posted 2013-02-27 01:18:27 and read 15659 times.

Before SQ retired their 744's they were flying around in appalling condition and often went tech, the A380's replacing them haven't faired much better. I've had 2 SQ A380 flights cancelled for mx reasons and several delays. SQ 1 a couple of days ago was an hour and a half late out of SFO and terminated its service in HKG due to mx.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: FlyDeltaJets
Posted 2013-02-27 02:35:08 and read 14817 times.

Quoting AA737-823 (Reply 65):
Seriously? Perhaps you're a shareholder, but the fact of the matter is that UA issued a PRESS RELEASE stating that they were relocating the 747 fleet to SFO in ORDER TO improve fleet reliability. And with one AOG in SYD for nearly a week, then ferrying home, we've got a spot-on thread title.

I don't see evidence that the UA 747 fleet is any less reliable than any other 747 fleet. All maintenance based decisions are made to increase reliability so I don't see how that bolsters your argument.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: na
Posted 2013-02-27 03:33:10 and read 14257 times.

The 744 is known as a very reliable airplane. So if UA has issues with it, its bad maintenance. I´ve recently been in the LH 747 maintenance hangar again and the guys their praise the 747 as the best plane, the chief their was even enthusiastic of "his" plane.

I hope UA goes for the 748I. Its a shame for the US airline industry that they are not able to fly their top product.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: airproxx
Posted 2013-02-27 03:40:58 and read 14140 times.

I don't know about the other airlines operating both aircraft at the same time, but @ AF, the 744 average reliability figures are way better than those of the A380...!

I believe this bird keeps going strong, mainly because of its "strong" design.

A friend of mine used to ferry one of AF's 744, 1 or 2 years ago, which had been put on a long term storage in Chalons-Vatry (XCR) for 4 years, during the begining of the economical downturn, to put it back on service. They came with a mechanic to prevent from any trouble, considering the time this bird spent out without flying.
They didn't even need him to do anything!
Everything when just fine, from a cold start up until arrival on its parking position in CDG.

Amazing aircraft....

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: na
Posted 2013-02-27 03:56:51 and read 13964 times.

Quoting SIA747Megatop (Reply 70):
Before SQ retired their 744's they were flying around in appalling condition and often went tech

Again an example of an airline which doesnt take proper care of aircraft soon to be phased out. You wont find LH doing that. I am not too much surprised that SIA apparently is inferior here. A few years back I flew on one of their older 777s which is now flying elsewhere and that wasnt in good condition too.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: jumpjets
Posted 2013-02-27 04:44:27 and read 13319 times.

Quoting jayunited (Reply 30):
And UA does not keep spare 744 in LHR nor any other type

I did realise they don't keep spare planes here I meant spare parts - though I accept the wording of my comment was open to different interpretations.

Quoting AA737-823 (Reply 41):
Did you somehow interpret my post as suggesting that they did SFO-SFO flightseeing trips?

Not exactly - I thought maybe they were going to be used on US transcontinental flights when they were never too far from a UA station. But now you mention it flights round the bay from the top deck of a 744 would make a great afternoon out.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: strfyr51
Posted 2013-02-27 05:18:19 and read 12801 times.

8479 sustained GROUND damage to the fuselage @ SYD and had to have interim repairs, Had nothing to DO with reliability!
It might have been good that you KNEW the whole story before you spouted OPINION, Y'think??

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: usa330300
Posted 2013-02-27 05:30:46 and read 12577 times.

Quoting AA737-823 (Thread starter):
The last time I flew in a NW 744, N665US, it was in appalling condition

You have to remember that the NWA mechanics were a very militant group. Their attention to maintaining the aircraft was secondary as compared to them literally showing up outside 'scabs'' homes and making threats to murder them.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: SEPilot
Posted 2013-02-27 05:31:40 and read 12607 times.

Quoting AA737-823 (Thread starter):
We never heard LH announce "Oh, well, these birds are old, we're basing all of them out of MUC to improve reliability."

Wilco737 (who is a LH 747 pilot) said in another thread that he has never had one go tech; too bad he hasn't weighed in on this issue. If UA is finding them unreliable it is their fault, not the aircraft's.

Quoting PHX787 (Reply 18):
It also kinda puts the 748i in perspective....if the 77W or 77L can't handle the capacity that the 744 has, then I'm going to expect UA to eventually order the 748i once they begin retiring their 744s.

It is not an issue of capacity; it is an issue of profitability. If they can make more money with a smaller plane, who needs capacity? Larger planes usually mean more profit if they are full; but if the CASM of the large plane is lower than a smaller one the rationale for the larger one goes out the window. In this context, the reason the 748i is struggling to get orders is that (as I understand) the 77W offers equal or better CASM, and with two engines lower maintenance costs. It's not as if each airline has a fixed number of passengers on any given route that they HAVE to transport. If they fly a smaller plane they just fly fewer of them, and other airlines will pick up the slack. Obviously most airlines like to increase their market share, but not at the expense of profitability.

[Edited 2013-02-27 05:34:33]

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: airproxx
Posted 2013-02-27 05:32:50 and read 12510 times.

Quoting na (Reply 72):
Again an example of an airline which doesnt take proper care of aircraft soon to be phased out. You wont find LH doing that. I am not too much surprised that SIA apparently is inferior here. A few years back I flew on one of their older 777s which is now flying elsewhere and that wasnt in good condition too.

Agreed. LH is one of AF biggest competitor, but their aircraft are always flying in close to perfect condition, even when their phasing out time is close.
Anyway, I agree that dispatch reliability have a lot to do with maintenance programs. But not only. Some planes are built to last, some others aren't... That's it.
The 747-400 have always been a fantastic machine, reliable, redundant, and its longevity speaks for itself.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: airproxx
Posted 2013-02-27 05:34:32 and read 12468 times.

Sorry my last reply is confusing. I wanted to say that despite the fact that AF is my heart company, and that LH is one of its biggest competitor, I must admit that their aircraft are in better shape than ours...  

Cheers

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: PSU.DTW.SCE
Posted 2013-02-27 05:37:37 and read 12450 times.

Quoting strfyr51 (Reply 74):
8479 sustained GROUND damage to the fuselage @ SYD and had to have interim repairs, Had nothing to DO with reliability!
It might have been good that you KNEW the whole story before you spouted OPINION, Y'think??

Thank you!

I like how we have one incident and before every knows the story, everyone is claiming they are "JUNK"

Quoting usa330300 (Reply 75):
You have to remember that the NWA mechanics were a very militant group. Their attention to maintaining the aircraft was secondary as compared to them literally showing up outside 'scabs'' homes and making threats to murder them

This is an ignorant and uninformed comment.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: usa330300
Posted 2013-02-27 05:56:02 and read 12156 times.

Quoting PSU.DTW.SCE (Reply 79):

This is an ignorant and uninformed comment.

It is what they (the mechanics) did in their job action. How in the world is that uninformed? They threatened other mechanics and their families with death as they protested outside of peoples' homes. It was all over WJR Detroit radio as they covered the action.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: PSU.DTW.SCE
Posted 2013-02-27 06:07:17 and read 12009 times.

Quoting usa330300 (Reply 80):
It is what they (the mechanics) did in their job action. How in the world is that uninformed? They threatened other mechanics and their families with death as they protested outside of peoples' homes. It was all over WJR Detroit radio as they covered the action.

While yes it is true the NW AMFA mechanics were a militant group and ultimately mis-lead by their union leaders, there is no indication that over the long term they neglected the maintenance of NW aircraft.

Yes, I remember the threats and protests, but the union was ultimately broken apart, most of the mechanics in the end crossed the picket line and returned to their jobs.

You cannot infer by the actions of the AMFA that it impacted maintenance procedures, led to lower-quality work, or that in any way it impacted safety of flight.

Yes, there were some short-term issues due to the backlog of maintenance during the initial strike. However, so much maintenance was outsourced by NW - specifically all of the heavy checks on the 744 fleet.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: strfyr51
Posted 2013-02-27 07:11:24 and read 10922 times.

Quoting na (Reply 70):

Bad MX @ UA?? Do you actually KNIOW what you're talking about?? Do you have Proof or is this just opinion as usual?

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: SQSFO
Posted 2013-02-27 07:15:00 and read 10863 times.

The Current United Airlines, is a large airline, and I suspect they are going to need more than 50 wide bodies to replace the current fleet. After a long class discussion of airline planning, it seemed that UA could use aircraft with the capabilities of the 77L, 77W, and one VLA( whether the 748i or A380). The discrepancy we were facing is whether UA chooses "old technology"(i.e.. the 777 Fleet) or will it go for the newer more expensive choices(A350-1000 or 800 or the 777-X)(Do not that the current 359 order is the exception as it was the order from Pre-Merger Management). And as much as we A.netters speculate, the full fledged strategy of the new UA is still yet to be complete when it comes to fleet planning. We could see VLA's or we could see an influx of double's, it all depends now depends on frequency versus capacity. One more thing to note is, will the UA have a divided strategy for its Trans-pacific routes than the trans-Atlantic routes, and if so will the strategy be economically viable. The assumption is fewer airlines, and mergers will mean more profits, but with geography and span of the US, and the routes, this takes much more planning and thought when it comes to ordering fleets.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: jayunited
Posted 2013-02-27 07:38:41 and read 10413 times.

Quoting AA737-823 (Reply 46):
I see your point, but you're still missing mine. Other airlines do what they wish with their fleet, meanwhile, United finds it necessary to base the planes out of home-base, rather than keep them (and crew bases) at other hubs as well.

Quoting jayunited (Reply 46):
There will be no difference in what United intends to do starting this spring and in what other airlines are already doing.

Delta has major 747 ops in NRT, DTW, ATL, etc. United relegates them to SFO, with much more limited exception.

So the only airline you could come up with is Delta.

Your comparison and statement are completely wrong you originally started talking about the aircraft it self now you are including crew bases. Well if you want to include crew bases then UA still will have crew bases located at SFO, LAX, and NRT (flight attendants only for NRT).

But going back to the original topic of the 744 itself most airlines do the bulk of their international flying out of one maybe 2 hubs with the major exceptions being U.S. and Canadian airlines. So most airlines regardless of where their crew is based the 744 itself the actual aircraft is maintained at one centralized base because remember the topic is about UA 744 dispatch reliability not about crew bases.

For example most European Airlines 744's will fly from the 744's European base to the U.S. then return back to that European base. United on the other hand early last summer and many years prior had 744 routings that looked like like this SFO-FRA-ORD-NRT-BKK-NRT-SFO. (that is just an example one routing I could provide many more) Now this coming spring and summer the routing for a 744 will look like this SFO-FRA-SFO, or SFO-LHR-SFO. the longest 2 routing this coming summer will be SFO-NRT-HNL-NRT-SFO and SFO-SYD-MEL-SYD-LAX-SYD-SFO. However 80-85% of United 744 fleet will have a routing that looks like this SFO-XXX-SFO no different that what their European or most of their Asian counterparts already do with their current 744 fleet. The reason for this change is because SFO is now the maintenance base for UA 744 fleet and by looking at what other airlines are doing and how they route their 744 fleet if UA wants to improve the dispatch reliability of the 744 fleet those airplanes need to spend more time at the 744 maintenance base so that little problems that other stations defer are not allow to pile up into big problems that then cause the aircraft to take a major delay or worse cancel because we now have to wait for SFO to send us the parts to fix the plane.

There is only 22 or 23 744 left in United's fleet spare parts cost money an airline wants to have enough spare parts to cover any and all problems plus have a few extra on top of that but that becomes increasingly difficult when you have a small fleet and your spreading that fleet out across multiple maintenance bases. Having the majority of the 744 fleet visit its home base in SFO almost after every roundtrip flight will cut down on maintenance cost because the little problems can be dealt with and not deferred time and time again.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: TVNWZ
Posted 2013-02-27 07:47:54 and read 10277 times.

747 has 4 engines. 777 has two. I would assume that the 747 would have twice the trouble than a 777, just on that fact alone.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: na
Posted 2013-02-27 07:51:29 and read 10204 times.

Quoting strfyr51 (Reply 82):
Bad MX @ UA?? Do you actually KNIOW what you're talking about?? Do you have Proof or is this just opinion as usual?

When a type that is among the most reliable anywhere else, should have problems at UA, then its logical that its a UA inhouse issue, and that has most likely to do with maintenance. There is no other answer, or, ok, granted, the OP is false.

Btw, what do you mean by "opinion as usual"?

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: CODC10
Posted 2013-02-27 08:07:15 and read 10000 times.

Quoting AA737-823 (Reply 46):

Delta has major 747 ops in NRT, DTW, ATL, etc. United relegates them to SFO, with much more limited exception.

I don't see what the problem is. UA's 747 operation at SFO will be huge this summer. 2x to FRA, LHR, NRT, ICN, HKG, KIX, SYD, PVG and PEK, plus LAX-SYD-MEL and HNL-NRT. That's 10 dailies out of SFO alone, which is bigger than any single DL 747 base.

Two different strategies, neither is necessarily better or worse than the other.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: panamair
Posted 2013-02-27 08:17:57 and read 9827 times.

Quoting CODC10 (Reply 87):
That's 10 dailies out of SFO alone, which is bigger than any single DL 747 base.

The DL 744 flying this summer out of NRT should be close though - 9 dailies: HNL (2x), SEA, ATL, DTW, JFK, TPE, MNL, BKK.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: CODC10
Posted 2013-02-27 08:28:34 and read 9623 times.

Quoting panamair (Reply 88):

The DL 744 flying this summer out of NRT should be close though - 9 dailies: HNL (2x), SEA, ATL, DTW, JFK, TPE, MNL, BKK.

I seem to have forgotten about DL's NRT interport flying with the 744. Interesting that DL manages as many daily 747 flights as UA despite having a fleet just 2/3 the size, but United's utilization is cushier and has a longer average stage length. In those terms, it makes Delta's slightly higher reliability a bit more impressive.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: N505FX
Posted 2013-02-27 08:54:12 and read 9144 times.

Quoting na (Reply 86):
When a type that is among the most reliable anywhere else, should have problems at UA, then its logical that its a UA inhouse issue, and that has most likely to do with maintenance. There is no other answer, or, ok, granted, the OP is false.

Look at the figures, it is not significantly different at UA than at other airlines, hardly grounds for a "factual" statement like you made. First, I suppose you know noting of RCM. Second, I doubt you have ever been in UAL MOC in SFO. Third, I bet you have never reviewed any of UAL's maintenance procedures. Fourth, I doubt you have looked in to their certificate and compliance with FAA standards....you yeah, I would chalk this one up to YOUR opinion as well.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: avek00
Posted 2013-02-27 09:06:00 and read 8993 times.

Quoting glbltrvlr (Reply 56):
As long as you keep the hours and cycles balanced you get the maximum life out of the aircraft.

And that's precisely what was not occurring during United's most financially difficult period.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: rocket45
Posted 2013-02-27 09:22:30 and read 8773 times.

In NRT NW maintained a 747-400 spare and Delta has falways done the same.. Today there is still a spare for 7 daily arrival and departures of which two are HNL. This gives them routing flexibility and a reliable operation. It also helps account for lower fleet usuage.

Even when United had a number of 400's transiting NRT they did not have a spare. Today United is down to 2 747-400 arrival/departures in NRT, SFO and BKK. so certanly no need.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: glbltrvlr
Posted 2013-02-27 09:59:42 and read 8163 times.

Quoting avek00 (Reply 91):
And that's precisely what was not occurring during United's most financially difficult period.

I can't speak to what United was or wasn't doing, but I can say there are different strategies that can be used depending on what the objectives of the company are. For example, if you know that you intend to get rid of a certain aircraft type in a few years, you might want to focus on hours over cycles to maximize the sales value for a freight conversion.

If cash flow is a concern, you might focus on hours over cycles or vice versa, depending on what the maintenance schedule looks like.

If you intend to fly a particular type until the wings fall off (i.e. the NWA DC-9 strategy), you might want to keep the hours and cycles balanced.

And finally, if you need to serve a route and don't have a perfectly optimized fleet (who does?) you do what you need to do.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: PHX787
Posted 2013-02-27 10:12:00 and read 8023 times.

Quoting strfyr51 (Reply 74):
8479 sustained GROUND damage to the fuselage @ SYD and had to have interim repairs, Had nothing to DO with reliability!

good ol airliners members not looking into the whole story behind things  
Quoting SEPilot (Reply 76):
Wilco737 (who is a LH 747 pilot) said in another thread that he has never had one go tech; too bad he hasn't weighed in on this issue. If UA is finding them unreliable it is their fault, not the aircraft's.

He's stated as well in previous threads that they are quite reliable, actually. But now he's flying the 748i......luckiest moderator in the world 

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: musapapaya
Posted 2013-02-27 10:12:27 and read 8000 times.

Quoting jayunited (Reply 44):
BA: all their 744 are based and maintained out of LHRAF: their 744 based and maintained out of CDGLH: most of their 744 based and maintained out of FRACX: HKG based and maintainedSQ: when they had 744 based and maintained out of SINJL: NRT

Some maintenance are outsourced - QF do theirs in MNL, CX in Xiamen, for example.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: STT757
Posted 2013-02-27 10:30:49 and read 7738 times.

Quoting SQSFO (Reply 83):
The discrepancy we were facing is whether UA chooses "old technology"(i.e.. the 777 Fleet) or will it go for the newer more expensive choices(A350-1000 or 800 or the 777-X)(

I think at this point they are going to go with "proven" vs. newer for a 744 replacement. I think they will announce a new order to replace the 744s this year, either 77W, 748i or a combination of both. The A350s will probably replace older 77A models.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: SEPilot
Posted 2013-02-27 10:47:53 and read 7472 times.

Quoting PHX787 (Reply 94):

He's stated as well in previous threads that they are quite reliable, actually. But now he's flying the 748i......luckiest moderator in the world

I'll drink to that (even though I don't drink)!      

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: tommy767
Posted 2013-02-27 11:33:43 and read 6900 times.

Quoting AA737-823 (Reply 67):

No, in all seriousness, I don't. I'm an elite on UA, so I feel like I know first-hand their strengths and weaknesses. Just as CO had things they were bad at, so did UA... and cabin maintenance was one of them.

sCO has their share of shabby interiors. A lot of the late 90s delivered 737 seats are truly worn and provide zero back support.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: planiac787
Posted 2013-02-27 12:06:41 and read 6495 times.

I saw the UA 747 in Fra recently in January,..It was in old colors and looked worn out...
I think it was on it s way to SFO....
I have also been on the delta 747 they look just fine to me....
748i would definitely be a good replacement for both UA/DL but they can also look at the A380 for there high density routes
DL could use use the A380 on ATL-LAX... but already use a 777 daily and have multiple fights daily....might as well reduce the number of flights and add the 380 to the list....
UA on the other hand could consider the A380 for routes such as ewr-lhr and ord-lhr..
I have rarely seen these routes go vacant... They have a high passenger load factor.!

Cheers

Pradat

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: rwy04lga
Posted 2013-02-27 12:20:22 and read 6314 times.

Quoting N505FX (Reply 60):
they just don't demand U.S. union salaries and work rules...

Nor have they US prices/costs.

Quoting jumpjets (Reply 73):
But now you mention it flights round the bay from the top deck of a 744 would make a great afternoon out.

Top deck windows are slanted inwards slightly, so better viewing from main deck.

Quoting usa330300 (Reply 75):
You have to remember that the NWA mechanics were a very militant group. Their attention to maintaining the aircraft was secondary as compared to them literally showing up outside 'scabs'' homes and making threats to murder them.

I'm not touching THAT one.

Quoting glbltrvlr (Reply 93):
If you intend to fly a particular type until the wings fall off (i.e. the NWA DC-9 strategy)

I don't believe I ever heard of a NW DC-9s wings falling off.

Quoting glbltrvlr (Reply 93):
if you need to serve a route and don't have a perfectly optimized fleet (who does?)

Delta does!

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: winstonlegthigh
Posted 2013-02-27 12:34:20 and read 6147 times.

Quoting kamboi (Reply 9):

It's sad that the only 777 one sees at SFO are AF, JAL, SQ, EVA. No UA  

Based on what we've been seeing, and what we're likely to continue seeing, all will have ample opportunity to observe the relatively plain-looking 777. This isn't a knock on the 777, it's just too bad that it has, and will continue to come at the cost of 747s, 340s, et al. ...

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: sonomaflyer
Posted 2013-02-27 14:11:41 and read 5413 times.

The 350 order is too large to account for the 77As. It's 25 planes with the same number of options.

UA stated repeatedly that the 359 order is to replace the 744s. They are going away from quads and moving to twins given the fuel savings. The 359s are supposed to be delivered within the next five years.

What exactly would this mythical 77W order look like? UA would pay huge penalties to cancel their 359 order and the 77Ws would be about 18 months out from the order.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: FlyHossD
Posted 2013-02-27 15:36:58 and read 5209 times.

Quoting tommy767 (Reply 98):
sCO has their share of shabby interiors. A lot of the late 90s delivered 737 seats are truly worn and provide zero back support.

Ah yes, I was wondering how long it would take you to mention the sCO seats. I do agree that the UA coach seats are more comfortable, though.

I can't recall seeing a worn out sCO seat cover though - is that what you're suggesting?

It seems to me that even the brand new sCO style seats aren't comfortable beyond about an hour and that's something I hope that the new UAL will improve.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: STT757
Posted 2013-02-27 15:45:39 and read 5189 times.

Quoting sonomaflyer (Reply 102):
The 350 order is too large to account for the 77As. It's 25 planes with the same number of options.

The A350 order, including the options, can replace the entire Pratt powered 777 fleet (A and ERs).

Quoting sonomaflyer (Reply 102):
UA stated repeatedly that the 359 order is to replace the 744s.

That was before the merger, Smisek has said they are looking at A350-1000s, 748is, 77Ws and 77X to replace the 744s.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: LAXintl
Posted 2013-02-27 17:07:41 and read 5001 times.

Timely, I just ran across this note -

As we know in an effort to improve reliability, the 747 operations are being centralized
on the west coast. In addition, the company is making a substantial investment
accomplishing many updates and overhauls to critical systems on the aircraft to
prolong both its longevity and reliability.

Currently, all 747s have started to go through this reliability upgrade program.
This heavy modification is budgeted for $15 million and includes an extensive
fuel system rework, some work on flight controls, galleys, and other items.

All 747s will go through this upgrade which will be completed by the end of 2013.


=

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: United1
Posted 2013-02-27 17:16:52 and read 4984 times.

Quoting sonomaflyer (Reply 102):
The 350 order is too large to account for the 77As. It's 25 planes with the same number of options.
Quoting STT757 (Reply 104):
Quoting sonomaflyer (Reply 102):
The 350 order is too large to account for the 77As. It's 25 planes with the same number of options.

The A350 order, including the options, can replace the entire Pratt powered 777 fleet (A and ERs

It's 25 on order with 50 options...UA could replace every 777 (PW and GE) in the fleet if they wanted to.

Quoting na (Reply 86):
When a type that is among the most reliable anywhere else, should have problems at UA, then its logical that its a UA inhouse issue, and that has most likely to do with maintenance.

UA statistically is getting about the same level of dispatch reliability as QF, BA or AF get with their aircraft....none of those airlines have bad MTC. This is simply an aircraft that is getting older and is still being worked hard...

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: jayunited
Posted 2013-02-27 18:30:56 and read 4782 times.

Quoting sonomaflyer (Reply 102):
UA stated repeatedly that the 359 order is to replace the 744s. They are going away from quads and moving to twins given the fuel savings. The 359s are supposed to be delivered within the next five years.

It was announced last year by the CEO that the 359 was not going to be the replacement aircraft for the 744s. Before the merger pmUA made the announcement that the 359s would replace the 744 however now UA is currently looking at the 77w, 77x, 748i and A350-1000 as a possible replacement for the 744s.

I think the reason UA the now merged has not announced any wide body orders is because they waiting to see what happens with the 77x program. If the 77x performance and range is any where close to 350-1000 performance and range I think the UA will probably go with the 77x as the replacement. But so far Boeing does not have the authority to offer the 77x and they have not released their projections on what the aircraft will be capable of.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: sonomaflyer
Posted 2013-02-27 18:44:00 and read 4719 times.

Thanks, I stand corrected on the 359 comment. Smisek still isn't cancelling the 359 order given the huge penalties which would be incurred.

It puts UA and other airlines in an interesting position vis a vie the 787 and 350. Will UA go big on a 350 order or 787? Will they wait for Boeing to offer the 77X or go for the 748i?

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: jayunited
Posted 2013-02-27 19:38:40 and read 4582 times.

If the 77x range and performance comes close to the performance of A350-1000 and if UA decides to wait and go with the 77x does any one think that with UA consolidating 744 operations at SFO they will keep the 744s flying until the 77x deliveries start do to the fact UA will need the capacity and the 359 does not come close to the capacity of a 744?

Or will UA still move ahead and retire the entire fleet starting in 2016 take the loss in capacity for a few years until larger aircraft start arriving?

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: sonomaflyer
Posted 2013-02-27 20:52:06 and read 4443 times.

According to Airbus, the 359 seats 314 folks in a three class set up. The 77X deliveries won't be before 2019 or so based on what has been mentioned so far about the development cycle. The 744s won't last another seven or eight years without expensive maintenance.

Their choices are 748i, 77W, 359, 351 and 77X. Their availability to UA time-wise is roughly in that order.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: LAXintl
Posted 2013-02-27 21:22:24 and read 4373 times.

From a presentation I saw, I believe the proposed configurations on the A359 are 274 in 3-class or 331 in 2-class.

Not sure what the final will be, but I'd guess the 2-class would be more inline with the current managements thinking.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: STT757
Posted 2013-02-28 03:40:49 and read 3988 times.

I don't think UA will wait for the 77X, I think they're looking for something that can start to be delivered around 2016. For UA to order the 748i I think Boeing really needs to give them a sweet deal, especially in light of the 787 delays. Otherwise I would say UA will either convert their A350-900s to 1000s or go with the 77W.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: strfyr51
Posted 2013-02-28 05:13:20 and read 3830 times.

More than likely the decision will come down to Money and the commonality of the fleet, The actual A350 will come to be not much more than a variation of the A320A319's we already fly and the fleet I'm working Maintenance control on.
The CO management stand is the more common the fleet is to what we already have, the greater the savings in parts and in training across the board. The 748 stands a great chance because it's just an upgrade to the 747-422, as the A350 is an upgrade to the A320 and the 77W would be an upgrade to the 772's , It really does make sense. except that the A380would not be included in that scenario because it wouldn't fit in our Hangars in their current Configuration and United is in NO way going to build a Hangar Just for that airplane. We could actually do everything for the airplane though with the exception of jacking it with the Hangars we already have. but it would have to be based at SFO,

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: toobz
Posted 2013-02-28 05:33:11 and read 3791 times.

DL dispatch on the 744 is extremely good. DL maint in general is very good. I believe UA has good maint practices as well..as do airlines in general in the US and Europe. It would be hard to stay in business if that wasn't the case. I will say that DL currently has better looking 744s interior wise, as a whole. This means both premium and economy. UA has a very tired and quite frankly awful Y product on the 744s.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: ikramerica
Posted 2013-02-28 10:34:53 and read 3471 times.

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 105):
Timely, I just ran across this note -

As we know in an effort to improve reliability, the 747 operations are being centralized
on the west coast. In addition, the company is making a substantial investment
accomplishing many updates and overhauls to critical systems on the aircraft to
prolong both its longevity and reliability.

Currently, all 747s have started to go through this reliability upgrade program.
This heavy modification is budgeted for $15 million and includes an extensive
fuel system rework, some work on flight controls, galleys, and other items.

All 747s will go through this upgrade which will be completed by the end of 2013.

=

I wonder how many years $15 million buys you. If it's for the whole fleet, can't be too many, but if it's per aircraft, that would probably fix a lot of things.

Quoting jayunited (Reply 107):
I think the reason UA the now merged has not announced any wide body orders is because they waiting to see what happens with the 77x program. If the 77x performance and range is any where close to 350-1000 performance and range I think the UA will probably go with the 77x as the replacement. But so far Boeing does not have the authority to offer the 77x and they have not released their projections on what the aircraft will be capable of.

I agree. The A350-1000 doesn't have the capability UA would want, the 77W does but might be too thirsty, the 748i does but might be too big. A 777-9 (stretch of 77W, new engines and wing, fits in 744 box) would be an ideal replacement. But if it's not going to come before 2021 or later, you might see UA go with the 748 or 77W anyway.

Quoting STT757 (Reply 112):
I don't think UA will wait for the 77X, I think they're looking for something that can start to be delivered around 2016. For UA to order the 748i I think Boeing really needs to give them a sweet deal, especially in light of the 787 delays. Otherwise I would say UA will either convert their A350-900s to 1000s or go with the 77W.

I think it would depend on what the 77x is. If it could start delivery in 2018, and Boeing offered a life extension program for the 744s as part of the deal (where Boeing overhauls each aircraft as needed), you might see UA wait. But if it's another 8 years, there's just no way.

Quoting strfyr51 (Reply 113):
except that the A380would not be included in that scenario because it wouldn't fit in our Hangars in their current Configuration and United is in NO way going to build a Hangar Just for that airplane. We could actually do everything for the airplane though with the exception of jacking it with the Hangars we already have. but it would have to be based at SFO,

This is an interesting point. The A380 wouldn't do well at EWR due to lack of taxiway size and no hangar, it could work at ORD but there is no hangar, IAH but there is no reason to fly it there, LAX but no hangar, and SFO (does it have a hangar?). You could see A380 Star partners build a joint hangar at LAX or something like that, but that would require a lot of cooperation for a major fixed cost.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: fun2fly
Posted 2013-03-01 04:59:53 and read 2973 times.

ALC now has 20+ 77W's on order. Perhaps ALC's latest purchase of 10 77W's is for UA to lease for 10-12 years to replace half the fleet and get them to the A359 for the other half returning the 77W's when the 777x is available? Just thinking out loud since it seems like UA needs to do something as I totally agree the back of the plane is terrible from someone who has done HKG>ORD in 1st and in coach.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: malaysia
Posted 2013-03-01 05:45:18 and read 2940 times.

Flew out of SFO on a UA 747 and was over an hour late and had to return to gate for MX, cause First and Business Class lighting could not be reset or restarted, so was a return to gate, but glad the flight still left

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: STT757
Posted 2013-03-01 07:17:23 and read 2835 times.

How about the possibility of a split order, 15 77W and 15 748i.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: ikramerica
Posted 2013-03-01 07:55:27 and read 2761 times.

I can't see a split demand for 748 and 77W

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: avek00
Posted 2013-03-01 14:05:07 and read 2569 times.

Tilton (in his time) and Smisek have both made clear that United has a preference for new-generation widebodies. As a general principle, this makes sense as right now it's hard to put together a financing package for, say, a 77W that doesn't carry great risk of putting an airline underwater on the deal -- partly because Boeing has been less willing to greatly discount those planes, and partly because the A350 and inevitable next-gen 777 will impact the already-high valuations of 77Ws. Indeed, airlines ordering 77Ws at this point basically fall into two categories:

1. Early operators of the bird who got in with more attractive terms favorable for top-up orders; or

2. Operators desperate for the only plane presently available in the 77W size category, like American Airlines.

Topic: RE: UA 744's Keep Breaking; Do Delta's Too?
Username: sonomaflyer
Posted 2013-03-01 14:23:16 and read 2530 times.

Quoting avek00 (Reply 120):

Tilton (in his time) and Smisek have both made clear that United has a preference for new-generation widebodies. As a general principle, this makes sense as right now it's hard to put together a financing package for, say, a 77W that doesn't carry great risk of putting an airline underwater on the deal -- partly because Boeing has been less willing to greatly discount those planes, and partly because the A350 and inevitable next-gen 777 will impact the already-high valuations of 77Ws. Indeed, airlines ordering 77Ws at this point basically fall into two categories:

1. Early operators of the bird who got in with more attractive terms favorable for top-up orders; or

2. Operators desperate for the only plane presently available in the 77W size category, like American Airlines.

Excellent post. This finance angle is a major reason why the 350 order won't be cancelled along with the major penalties in the contract for cancellation. They certainly could move up to the 350-1000 or a mix of the 359 and 351. Things get more interesting when you look at the 787-10 and where it might fit into the mix.

Given the delay in launching the 77X and the age of the current 744 fleet, the next UA wide body order will either be to convert options on the 787 line to include more 789s and 781s or convert options on the 359 to 351s or a mix of the two on their original order.

Sure the 748i is a possibility but I think UA will be lured into the notion of very large twins that can lift almost as much as the 748i while carrying almost as many people just as far while burning less fuel.


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