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DL MD-88's.....how Long Till There Outta Here?  
User currently offlineDeltaRampPIT From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 56 posts, RR: 0
Posted (10 years 3 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 5758 times:

Hello again!!

I work @ PIT and I was wondering if there are any plans for the retirement of the DL MD-88's. I really dont like these and they are dirty and old in my opinion. They are also loud in stark contrast to the "new" aircraft floating around PIT. Any info or opinions on this?

Thanks!!

Brian

38 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineIndustrialPate From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (10 years 3 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 5721 times:

May I ask why you believe these aircraft are old? DL's youngest MD-88 is only 10-years-old! The crux of the fleet was delivered during the 1989-1991 timeframe, making them relatively young for a $30+ million aircraft. Airlines that operate fleets of hundreds of jets don't renew them every 10 years or so to satisfy a small, insignificant group of enthusiasts who wouldn’t fly DL anyway unless they were the cheapest… especially if the airline is nearly bankrupt and lose millions of dollars! I'd bet that DL's near-75 strong fleet of B732/B733 will be retired well before the MD-88...

[Edited 2004-04-05 06:57:44]

User currently offlineRockyracoon From United States of America, joined Oct 2003, 951 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (10 years 3 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 5716 times:

Well considering they'll be forking out cash for hush kits in the near future, they'll be here to stay for a while. Plus they've got no cash to waste on a replacement for 100+ aircraft. Look how long delta kept their 727-200s even when they could have phased them out a lot earlier. My bet is that the 737-200s will leave the fleet long before the md-88s.


peace


User currently offlineIndustrialPate From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (10 years 3 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 5689 times:

Look how long delta kept their 727-200s even when they could have phased them out a lot earlier

Could’ve yes, but why would they have?  Big grin DL had nearly 150 streamlined B727 throughout most of the 1990s (many built in the late 1970s/early 1980s) and as recently as 1996 had planned on operating them into next decade (alongside the L1011, which was to be retired by 2008). They even fitted two B727 with winglets in the mid-1990s!

But I'll agree the B732/B733 will be retired long before the MD-88...


User currently offlineMHTOH From United States of America, joined Nov 2003, 54 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (10 years 3 weeks 9 hours ago) and read 5636 times:

For those of us that work them, they can't phase them out soon enough! Unfortunately, as stated above, they will be around for a while. It is a horrible aircraft to work with, but it does the job, and there are a ton of them flying (120?)

Maybe Delta can get a good deal on some A319s and A320s in a few months...  Wink/being sarcastic



mmm...jet fuel...
User currently offlineJhooper From United States of America, joined Dec 2001, 6199 posts, RR: 12
Reply 5, posted (10 years 3 weeks 9 hours ago) and read 5609 times:

What are you guys talking about? The M88 is the workhorse of the Delta fleet, and they really aren't that old. I wouldn't be surprised to see them around for another decade.


Last year 1,944 New Yorkers saw something and said something.
User currently offlineDeltaRampPIT From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 56 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (10 years 3 weeks 4 hours ago) and read 5529 times:

I agree they are a horrible aircraft to work on/around. Stacking in those bins is a interesting task, and I am 6'4"! I am not complaining, just a fact. Love to work in 737's!!

Thanks for the info.......I also note that when one of these take off the noise is by far the loudest and most noticeable exhaust of any @ PIT. That was the reason for my question. Just curious!

BRian


User currently offlineOttoPylit From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 7, posted (10 years 3 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 5416 times:

Hopefully soon. Actually, I cannot whine too bad, as it is a great aircraft for short segments, such as ATL-DCA or ATL-BHM. Delta must have gotten a sweet deal on these from MD, to have so many(around 120), but none fitted with IFE, especially when that is the current trend through the industry.(Are AA's outfitted with IFE?) The 16 MD-90's they have are completely fitted with IFE though. And when the Mad Dogs are scheduled for long haul flights(ATL-TUS), they always seem to be weight restricted, but fortunately, the Revenue Management Department has looked into that and do not allow them to be fully sold out.

As far as stacking the bins, being a former ramp rat, although not for Delta, you can give me a Mad Dog anyday over a 737 and those horrible nets. Although as a passenger, I will always take a 737 over an MD-88.


User currently offlinePHLBOS From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 7483 posts, RR: 24
Reply 8, posted (10 years 3 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 5409 times:

They even fitted two B727 with winglets in the mid-1990s!

According to an article in 'Airliners' magazine 2 or 3 issues back (the issue that dealt with the retirement of the 727s particularly NWs and DLs), the winglets were only used for 'experimental fuel savings' purposes. The winglets were taken off shortly thereafter. The article does not state whether the wingleted 727s were used for actual flights.



"TransEastern! You'll feel like you've never left the ground because we treat you like dirt!" SNL Parady ad circa 1981
User currently offlineSDFOH From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 74 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (10 years 3 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 5387 times:

I believe the pre 9/11 plan was to have them all phased out by 2008 with the MD-11/L1011 for an all Boeing fleet. They were going to replace them with the 737-800, but DL just recently sold off the options on the 737-800s that Boeing was building for them. It seems like DL has scrapped all plans to retire the MD-88 for the foreseeable future until it can get back on it's feet.

User currently offlineHirisk From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 223 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (10 years 3 weeks 2 hours ago) and read 5373 times:

i wouldn't be suprised if DL kept the mad-dogs for another 10-15 years.as for the 727 and L1011,yes delta had plans to keep them around till 2008 or so.after 9/11 that changed.as a fueler,i like working on MD88'S.low to the ground so i don't need a ladder to reach the fuel panel(732 small ladder,738 you almost need a lift truck!).only drawback is that it takes fuel real slow but thats just nitpicking.having flown on a few,i'd say they are also far quieter then 732's but little noiser then a 738.they are good flyiers but a pain in the arse to deice in the winter months.


happy contrails
User currently offlineMSYtristar From United States of America, joined Aug 2005, 6419 posts, RR: 51
Reply 11, posted (10 years 3 weeks 1 hour ago) and read 5310 times:

The M88's are new, versatile aircraft. They can effectively fly short (ATL-BMH) and long segments (DFW-LAX, ATL-PHX, etc). The fuel efficiency is good on these aircraft, they are pretty reliable from what i'm told, and they are just as (if not more) comfortable than some of the newer planes flying today. The bins on ALL DC-9 family aircraft are obviously not the best things to work in compared to 737/320 family, it's not just limited to the MD-88....if you are a person of tall stature, it's very easy to knock your head on the low ceiling...lord knows i had my share of bumps and bruises while looading NW DC-9's. Anyway, the -88 is a good 727 replacement for Delta. Expect them to be around for a long time.


Steve/MSY



Next trip: MSY-SEA-GEG-SEA-LWS-BOI-PDX-SEA-LAS on AS
User currently offline7E72004 From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 3587 posts, RR: 2
Reply 12, posted (10 years 3 weeks 1 hour ago) and read 5297 times:

If NW could keep their DC-9s for as long as they have then DL can keep the MD-80s for a very long time. I think that the MD-80 is an important part of DL's fleet and with the financial condition that the airlines are in now is not the time to start getting rid of aircraft, especially if there is nothing wrong with them.


The next generation of aircraft is just around the corner!
User currently offline777gk From United States of America, joined Jun 2000, 1641 posts, RR: 18
Reply 13, posted (10 years 3 weeks 1 hour ago) and read 5244 times:

I highly doubt they wanted to keep the L-1011s in the fleet until 2008, unless that was just a handful of the -500 series. Don't forget that they were retired BEFORE 9/11 (7/31/2001) and even at that time had outlived their useful (profitable) service life as pax carriers so retiring them earlier rather than later was a prudent financial decision even in the pre-9/11 climate. By 2008, most of the L-1011s would be damn near 30, and with the high-cycle flying that they were doing toward the end of their careers (ATL-MCO, FLL, etc...) there would be such a tremendous, prohibitive cost involved with maintaining these ships that it would not make any sense to keep them in service beyond the time they operated.

Plus, 767-400s had started arriving in late 2000 to replace the L-1011s, not augment them.

I think the idea was to keep the MD-11s around until 2008, when they would transition to a 767/777 long haul fleet.


User currently offlineDutchjet From Netherlands, joined Oct 2000, 7864 posts, RR: 57
Reply 14, posted (10 years 3 weeks 1 hour ago) and read 5192 times:

The DL MD-88s are the backbone of its short-haul domestic fleet and will be around for many, many years to come. Seriously, does anyone here think that DL has the financial resources to replace 120 aircraft that are between 10 and 15 years old? DOes anyone read the newspapers? At the moment, DL is losing money and has many financial problems (like most carriers) plus is trying to renegotiate contracts with its unions and work out some type of deal concerning pension obligations. I would not look for any orders from DL (to replace the MD88s or the 732/733 aircraft) in the near-term future.

User currently offlineSushka From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 4784 posts, RR: 15
Reply 15, posted (10 years 3 weeks ago) and read 5087 times:

I really liked th Delta MD88s I have been on a few and I think they are really comfortable and a lot more intersting than the usual 757 or 737-800.


Pershoyu Spravoyu Litaki!
User currently offlinePSU.DTW.SCE From United States of America, joined Jan 2002, 7363 posts, RR: 28
Reply 16, posted (10 years 3 weeks ago) and read 5054 times:

PIT?? What new aircraft at PIT, are you talking about the boatload of ERJ's and CRJ's operated by USAirways Express?

You complain about working in the MD-80 bins, try the CRJ bins, now thats clastraphobic.

MD-80's are extremely quiet in the front half of the aircraft.


User currently offlineJBirdAV8r From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 4482 posts, RR: 22
Reply 17, posted (10 years 2 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 5039 times:

Well considering they'll be forking out cash for hush kits in the near future, they'll be here to stay for a while.

Last I knew there was no reliable timeframe for Stage IV noise compliance regulations (as Stage III isn't all that old).



I got my head checked--by a jumbo jet
User currently offlineVC745d From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 214 posts, RR: 1
Reply 18, posted (10 years 2 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 5000 times:

To echo PSU.DTW.SCE above: As a 6'2" pax, I'll take the MDs (preferably with AA's MRTC, but even DL's) any day over Barbie Dream Jets. Connect from an RJ to an MD80 and you'll think you've gotten on a A380 (well, almost).

User currently offlineMHTOH From United States of America, joined Nov 2003, 54 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (10 years 2 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 4925 times:

"You complain about working in the MD-80 bins, try the CRJ bins, now thats clastraphobic."

At least you can stand up in the RJ bin! A good stacker can put about 80 or so bags in the RJ bin (if its not Spring Break), and I would rather work RJs than MD88s anyday. The Maddog bins are short and long, some of Delta's have the sliding carpet to make it easier, but they break a lot, and are only in the two longest bins. The worst part of the MD bin is the lip. It is not flat and flush with the beltloader, it is grooved out, and all of the bags catch on it. Things are ripped off all the time because it gets caught when unloading.




mmm...jet fuel...
User currently offlineFlyingColors From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 73 posts, RR: 6
Reply 20, posted (10 years 2 weeks 6 days 23 hours ago) and read 4910 times:

Sorry but I don't work on any of these, wish I did!

Ha, noise and smoke...........just beautiful!!!!!

Mike  Smile



Moon chaser!
User currently offlineScottb From United States of America, joined Jul 2000, 6583 posts, RR: 32
Reply 21, posted (10 years 2 weeks 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 4790 times:

To quote Delta's transitional annual report from early 2001, for July-December 2000 (they converted to fiscal years coincident with calendar years at that point; this is, of course, prior to 9/11):

"Delta's long-term plan is to reduce aircraft family types from seven to three. We believe fleet standardization will improve reliability and produce long-term cost savings. We plan to retire (1) our remaining L-1011 aircraft by August 2001; (2) our B-727 fleet by the end of 2005; and (3) our MD-90 fleet and owned MD-11 aircraft over the next six to eight years. In 1999, we entered into an agreement to sell our B-727 fleet, with deliveries occurring through 2005."

We can see that the retirement of the 727-200 was accelerated by a bit under three years, since that fleet was retired in early 2003, and the MD-11 retirement was accelerated by three to five years (six to eight years from early 2001 would have been 2007-2009, and they were retired earlier this year). The 737-800's are the replacement for Delta's 727-200 fleet; the number of 737-800's originally ordered by Delta was comparable to (if not a bit larger than) the 727-200 count. The MD-90's and MD-88's are all still in the fleet, as are virtually all of the 737-200's (I think 2 leased aircraft were returned, and a number of the Delta Express aircraft were parked for a bit).

Until Delta returns to profitability and can start picking up new narrowbody aircraft, the MD-88's aren't going anywhere. And it's likely that the smaller fleet of MD-90's would go first, even though they're newer and quieter, simply because they don't fit well in the fleet plan.


User currently offline707guy From United States of America, joined Jan 2001, 205 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (10 years 2 weeks 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 4721 times:

MHTOH - right on brother - rather work an RJ/732 than a Mad Dog anyday. You're absolutely right about the lip on the doors... And the lack of height really is a pain. I work the ramp for Delta in CLE so I know of what you speak... One of the best has to be the Airbus A319/20 - can almost stand up in all the bins.

User currently offlineSkymileman From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 23, posted (10 years 2 weeks 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 4650 times:

As long as Delta keeps operating an all Boeing/MD fleet, I'll be glad to fly on them, no matter how old their planes are. If they were to start getting airbuses, I wouldn't bother flying them.

User currently offlineDeltAirlines From United States of America, joined May 1999, 8869 posts, RR: 12
Reply 24, posted (10 years 2 weeks 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 4617 times:

I don't know anything about working on them, but I do know that from my viewpoint, I try and book myself on a DL MD-88 anyday of the week. I love having the two-side of the aircraft (can't get that on a Boeing narrowbody), and the two-side also has about an extra inch of legroom. I'm flying on the Mad Dog in 12 days MHT-ATL...can't wait for the flight!

Jeff


25 Skymileman : I'm with you there DeltAirlines. Long live the MD-80. The MD-90's an awesome plane as well. I fly on either one any time I can.
26 IndustrialPate : 777gk, DL’s own literature from 1996 indicates the airline planned on operating their L1011 until 2008, and the B727 for several years beyond that.
27 Freshlove1 : it looks as if they have removed 9 leased 737-300's from the fleet also to reduce costs and are going to sell 11 737-800's, as soon as they get them f
28 Post contains images PHLBOS : DL's own literature from 1996 indicates the airline planned on operating their L1011 until 2008, and the B727 for several years beyond that. Chances a
29 KaiGywer : Also, if I'm not mistaken, isn't there some requirement/rule (possibly by the FAA) that states that there needs to be a third person in the cockpit on
30 Jonathan L : I like the MD-88, even when I'm sitting in the back of it!
31 United_Fan : I read that DL retired the 727's beacuse of the new reinforced cockpit doors were supposed to be installed fleet-wide by April 30,2003. And it would
32 Post contains images 727LOVER : Thanks for the info.......I also note that when one of these take off the noise is by far the loudest and most noticeable exhaust of any @ PIT. That w
33 COEWR : Does anyone know how much DL owes on these MD-88's? If they are mostly paid off, why take a large plane order along with all the debt that goes with i
34 Post contains images RayChuang : If DL does hang on to its MD-88 fleet for the forseeable future, you really have to wonder what will DL do to improve the efficiency of the plane? My
35 Post contains images Iflyatldl : Let's just say, it will replace the NW DC9 thread in a few years.
36 Post contains links and images Delta767300ER : I like the MD-88 and have always enjoyed my flights on them with Delta. I actually prefer the MD-88 over a 757 in terms of comfortness. When the MD-88
37 Thrust : The DL MD-88s could last another 10 years with Delta...as someone pointed out earlier, they are relative new compared to many other MD-80s except for
38 Aloha717200 : I remember in the summer of 1999 or 2000 being told that the last MD-80 was being delivered by Boeing to American Airlines. I remember it because, sho
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