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Why Aren't Airline Windows A Little Bit Higher Up?  
User currently offlineDeltaGator From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 6341 posts, RR: 13
Posted (8 years 6 months 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 4877 times:

At 6' I wouldn't consider myself overly tall but I always find myself having to shrink down in my seat and even contort myself a little to see out the window. Just wondering if there is an engineering reason why the windows are located at that height or are they basing it on a very short person sitting in the seat?


"If you can't delight in the misery of others then you don't deserve to be a college football fan."
44 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlinePlanesailing From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2005, 815 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (8 years 6 months 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 4867 times:

Quoting DeltaGator (Thread starter):
Just wondering if there is an engineering reason why the windows are located at that height or are they basing it on a very short person sitting in the seat?

Its because you are an adult. Little children are meant to look out the window to keep them amused, you are meant to read a book!  Smile

I would imagine it is something to do with the structural integrity as to where they are positioned?


User currently offlineMarshalN From Hong Kong, joined Sep 2005, 1521 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (8 years 6 months 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 4864 times:

Just sit in the aisle seat and look over the pax, you get much better views out of two windows instead of one, usually, and no need to contort yourself.

The downside is of course you don't control the window


User currently offlinePipoA380 From Switzerland, joined May 2005, 1594 posts, RR: 51
Reply 3, posted (8 years 6 months 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 4857 times:
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It's because in the XIXth Century, people were smaller that they were today  rotfl 


It's not about AIRBUS. it's not about BOEING. It's all about the beauty of FLYING.
User currently offlineStarlionblue From Greenland, joined Feb 2004, 16908 posts, RR: 67
Reply 4, posted (8 years 6 months 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 4845 times:

Quoting DeltaGator (Thread starter):
At 6' I wouldn't consider myself overly tall but I always find myself having to shrink down in my seat and even contort myself a little to see out the window.

Well you are overly tall  Wink What I mean is that while in Northern Europe, much of North America and some other places, 6' is average, in most of the world you are well above average.



"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots."
User currently offlineDeltaGator From United States of America, joined Sep 2005, 6341 posts, RR: 13
Reply 5, posted (8 years 6 months 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 4832 times:

Quoting PipoA380 (Reply 3):
It's because in the XIXth Century, people were smaller that they were today

You joke but I bet that does have something to do with it. Go to Fenway Park in Boston and try to sit in one the seats. Either it was made for smaller people or it is a torture device.



"If you can't delight in the misery of others then you don't deserve to be a college football fan."
User currently offlineDavid L From United Kingdom, joined May 1999, 9483 posts, RR: 42
Reply 6, posted (8 years 6 months 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 4805 times:

Apart from the possible structural reasons... because most passengers don't want to look at the wings and control surfaces, they want to look down? The Caravelle even had triangular windows, with the base at the lower edge, to maximise the downward view for a given surface area.

User currently offlineBuyantUkhaa From Mongolia, joined May 2004, 2828 posts, RR: 3
Reply 7, posted (8 years 6 months 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 4801 times:

The most interesting sight is usually below anyway, as the sky is quite boring compared to the ground. So you'd want to look down anyway. And yes, probably they took average heights as a starting point.


I scratch my head, therefore I am.
User currently offlineRedFlyer From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 4252 posts, RR: 29
Reply 8, posted (8 years 6 months 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 4808 times:

I've had the same problems. In fact, I hate flying Canadair RJ's because their windows are exceptionally low on the fuselage. On the other hand, I love Embraer RJ's because the windows are so high up.

But to answer the original question, I think there was a perception originally that passengers preferred to look down from the plane at the terrain directly below. I believe engineers have realized recently that passengers prefer to view the horizon, or at least be able to see it. That is why most modern planes, with the Canadair exception, have the windows slightly higher. And wait until the next generation of planes come on line (787/350) - I think the windows on those babies will be in the "sweet spot" for viewing, especially since they'll be a lot larger as well.



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User currently offlineTallguy14 From United States of America, joined Jul 2002, 228 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (8 years 6 months 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 4799 times:
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Okay, I'm 6'5 and am myself a victim of the contorting-craning-my-neck-to-see-outside game. Boeing seems to be the prime offender here. I love to look out the window during thunderstorms, especially at night. When we used to fly them, the DC-10s had larger, better-placed windows. (The old rattletraps). Unless you're flying Northwest, FedEx or Ghana Airways, you're out of luck!

Jeff, United


User currently offlineZippyjet From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 5404 posts, RR: 12
Reply 10, posted (8 years 6 months 3 days 9 hours ago) and read 4625 times:



One of the few perks of being vertically challanged! Flying and looking out the window.  bigthumbsup 



I'm Zippyjet & I approve of this message!
User currently offlineBoysteve From United Kingdom, joined Apr 2004, 919 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (8 years 6 months 3 days 9 hours ago) and read 4569 times:

Quoting Planesailing (Reply 1):
Its because you are an adult. Little children are meant to look out the window to keep them amused, you are meant to read a book

I'm a child too then!
What about sunlight? At the moment the sun only shines through the windows and into your face rarely. If they were higher then might pax be dazzled somewhat more?
Just an idea.


User currently offlineRoseFlyer From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 9378 posts, RR: 52
Reply 12, posted (8 years 6 months 3 days 9 hours ago) and read 4541 times:

Does the Bombardier Challenger/Global Express business jet have a lower floor in the cabin than the CRJ to allow for more headroom? I think it might, which would explain the position of the windows since the CRJ-100/200 is based on that design.


If you have never designed an airplane part before, let the real designers do the work!
User currently offlineVV701 From United Kingdom, joined Aug 2005, 7258 posts, RR: 17
Reply 13, posted (8 years 6 months 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 4396 times:

I am also six foot tall and I've never found that the windows in any aircraft I have flown in were too low. But in every single aircraft bar one the cabin floor was too high.

The one? Look at my handle. The Vickers Viscount - the first commercial aircraft I ever flew in - had really big, picture windows. It did not matter where the cabin floor was positioned or how tall you were, you got an excellent view everytime.


User currently offline474218 From United States of America, joined Oct 2005, 6340 posts, RR: 9
Reply 14, posted (8 years 6 months 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 4141 times:

Quoting David L (Reply 6):

David, yours was the only response that got it right. People want to look down, and the Caravelle's widows were triangular shaped to allow for good downward vision with a minimum amount of metal removed.


User currently offlineCRJ900 From Norway, joined Jun 2004, 2152 posts, RR: 1
Reply 15, posted (8 years 6 months 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 4123 times:
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I flew on the B737-700 and -800 last weekend, and noticed that the windows are kind of low on the walls. I'm 5'11" tall and had to hunch a bit to be able to look out properly...

Well, the 737NG fuselages are based on the 707 that flew in 1954... us North Europeans have grown taller in 50 years, that's for sure...



Come, fly the prevailing winds with me
User currently offlineAndz From South Africa, joined Feb 2004, 8416 posts, RR: 11
Reply 16, posted (8 years 6 months 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 4119 times:
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Quoting PipoA380 (Reply 3):
It's because in the XIXth Century, people were smaller that they were today

Uh huh, how many jetliners were flying in the 19th century? Or any airliners for that matter?



After Monday and Tuesday even the calendar says WTF...
User currently offlineANITIX87 From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 3292 posts, RR: 13
Reply 17, posted (8 years 6 months 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 4107 times:
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Quoting Andz (Reply 16):
Uh huh, how many jetliners were flying in the 19th century? Or any airliners for that matter

PLEASE say you are joking...PLEASE...

TIS



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User currently offlineRoseFlyer From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 9378 posts, RR: 52
Reply 18, posted (8 years 6 months 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 4103 times:

Quoting Andz (Reply 16):
Uh huh, how many jetliners were flying in the 19th century? Or any airliners for that matter?

Those dirigables and hot air balloons needed to be able to accomodate the shorter passengers. Come on, haven't you heard of the wildly successful United Balloon Lines that offered nonstop service between New York and 2000ft in whatever direction the wind was blowing.



If you have never designed an airplane part before, let the real designers do the work!
User currently offlineAndz From South Africa, joined Feb 2004, 8416 posts, RR: 11
Reply 19, posted (8 years 6 months 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 4099 times:
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Read what the person said that I quoted.


After Monday and Tuesday even the calendar says WTF...
User currently offlineIkramerica From United States of America, joined May 2005, 21417 posts, RR: 60
Reply 20, posted (8 years 6 months 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 4077 times:

It depends on the plane. Not all windows are put in the same place, but on a 737, they seem lower than just about any other model. Us tall people have to crane our necks JUST TO LOOK DOWN. The angle is so bad, that looking down normally is at an angle that the thickness of the airframe itself blocks the view.


Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
User currently offlineDavid L From United Kingdom, joined May 1999, 9483 posts, RR: 42
Reply 21, posted (8 years 6 months 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 4009 times:

Quoting 474218 (Reply 14):
David, yours was the only response that got it right.

Ooo, cheers! But, in fairness, I may have been the only one to mention the Caravelle but several twigged the "looking down" solution.


User currently offlineDavid L From United Kingdom, joined May 1999, 9483 posts, RR: 42
Reply 22, posted (8 years 6 months 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 3982 times:

Quoting VV701 (Reply 13):
The Vickers Viscount - the first commercial aircraft I ever flew in - had really big, picture windows.

Ah yes, they had great windows - the F-27, too.


User currently offlineEuclid From South Africa, joined Apr 2005, 372 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (8 years 6 months 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 3940 times:

Quoting ANITIX87 (Reply 17):
PLEASE say you are joking...PLEASE...

I think you may be a bit confused.

We are now living in the 21st century, the century before that that was written as 19xx was the 20th century, and the age before that when 18xx was used was the 19th century, making Andz quite correct in saying that no airliners flew in the 19th century.


User currently offlineAirplaneDork From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 96 posts, RR: 0
Reply 24, posted (8 years 6 months 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 3879 times:

Didn't the De Havilland Comet have rather large windows? Even after the redesign to keep said windows attached to the plane in flight, they were still big, like large portholes.

I agree with the 737 windows. It is really awkward to look out of them, and I am 5'11".



To fly, the dream of man and flightless bird alike!
25 PipoA380 : Yes it's true. But it makes you both completely humour-less. It was a JOKE mates, hello?
26 ManchesterMAN : Airbus windows always seem higher than on Boeing aircraft. Last week I flew the 737, 777, A319 and A330 back to back and as mentioned the 737 windows
27 Ikramerica : F70/100 have bigger, more oval windows in a better location for tall people. Always liked flying those because of that.
28 Jet-lagged : Good points both! But you know, I've seen a movie of the submarine Nautilus piloted by Captain Nemo during the XIX century. That ship had some really
29 ContnlEliteCMH : I think the two of you may be perfectly humorless. The JOKE is that, of course, no airplanes were flying the nineteenth century, as 1903 was very nea
30 Ikramerica : That wall is often so if a fan explodes and isn't contained in the nacelle like it should be, it doesn't fly through the window and slice off your fa
31 1011 : Being 6-2 low windows are always a problem for me. The best plane windows for me were the L10,DC10, and best one of all planes was the MD-11. M-Dougla
32 Jet-lagged : Ah! Thanks for the info. And it sounds like another reason to avoid those seats!
33 Lono : at over 6'2" I seem to remember 727 windows were OK... and I have to agree you can't see anymore... so I sit on the aisle seats and drink and read...
34 Post contains images HAWK21M : Because You need to use the Window to look downwards while in flight. regds MEL
35 Post contains images PipoA380 : Thank you! I was beginning to think no one would ever understand it was a damn joke. But I'll stop joking from now on on this forum, because even by
36 N1120A : Actually, the United States has an average height of 5'9" for men and 5'3.75" for women.
37 ManchesterMAN : You're kidding right? If a fan blade was to escape the nacle on an aircraft travelling at 500mph it is no more liekly to strike the 15 inch windowles
38 Post contains links and images OB1783P : I read once that there was an early "convertible" version of the 727, which did passenger duty during the day and cargo at night. It was an organizati
39 DeltaGator : Thanks for all the responses folks. I should have been more specific because this one is what I was getting at here. I haven't had problems on the 777
40 GEnxPower : I don't know how Boeing sizes windows or calculates window locations previously, but I work on the 787 development team now and I know how they are si
41 HAWK21M : Any Details on that Combi Type. regds MEL
42 Post contains images Gib : Makes me remember DC8 windows that were like huge... Man, I'm friggin' old...
43 L1011 : I noticed that the windows on the Boeing 727QC were much lower that the other 727 models. I've heard that was due to the pallatized seating. I also no
44 OB1783P : The 717-100C A quick change QC combi. It had a main deck cargo door. There was a special ground vehicle called the "seat eater" which would connect t
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