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MD-87 In U.S Service  
User currently offlineMSYtristar From United States of America, joined Aug 2005, 6570 posts, RR: 50
Posted (8 years 7 months 3 days 9 hours ago) and read 3762 times:

I worked with this aircraft when I was at NJ, and I always thought it should have been more popular than it was. Besides Midway (1), Vanguard, and Allegiant, have there been any other U.S operators of this aircraft? Reno Air maybe?

It seemed to be a suped up DC-9-50, with increased range, updated avionics, and more powerful engines. On paper it seemed like a great airplane to own.

Where did the M87 go wrong?

27 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineCommavia From United States of America, joined Apr 2005, 11630 posts, RR: 61
Reply 1, posted (8 years 7 months 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 3762 times:

Quoting MSYtristar (Thread starter):
Reno Air maybe?

Reno did, indeed, have a small (5 or less, IINM) fleet of MD87s that they operated along the west coast. When AA purchased Reno, they got rid of this tiny subfleet of MD87s (and ultimately the entire Reno Air MD80 fleet) within 1-2 years.


User currently offlineQqflyboy From United States of America, joined Oct 2003, 2282 posts, RR: 13
Reply 2, posted (8 years 7 months 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 3700 times:

Reno Air indeed operated five MD-87s. Reg #'s N751RA, N752RA, N753RA, N754RA and N755RA. N755RA was previously registered N1074T... we used to say the T stood for trouble because we always had issues with that aircraft. That aircraft came from Great American and operated for a short time with the 1074T reg before being re-registered 755.


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Aircraft 753 and 754 were both equipped with auxillary fuel tanks and often flew RNO-DTW and RNO-ORD in the winter so as to avoid fuel stops. 753 was the aircraft involved in a dual engine failure incident in DTW, but landed safely. Spirit repaired that aircraft for QQ. Also, aircraft 751 was grounded for several months with a flap problem... pilots extended them for landing in SEA and they wouldn't go back in. Aircraft was ferried to RNO (can you imagine how long that took? And the fuel burn?). It took Boeing and QQ mechanics quite a while to solve the problem.

The pilots love the aircraft because it had the engines of the larger and most powerful of the MD-80 series, the MD-83. The plane performed like a rocket on the ground. The flight attendants weren't too fond of the aircraft because there was no galley in the back. Doing a service wasn't too bad, but once that was over, you had nowhere to go. And on long flights to DTW... especially red-eyes, that was rough.

If you want more info on the incindent at DTW, here's a link:
http://ntsb.gov/ntsb/GenPDF.asp?id=CHI97FA083&rpt=fi

All five QQ MD-87s are now in service with AeroMexico.

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[Edited 2006-02-18 19:33:58]


The views expressed are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect my employer’s views.
User currently offlineDalb777 From United States of America, joined May 2005, 2192 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (8 years 7 months 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 3547 times:

Quoting Commavia (Reply 1):
When AA purchased Reno, they got rid of this tiny subfleet of MD87s (and ultimately the entire Reno Air MD80 fleet) within 1-2 years.


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Looks awkward to see an AA Super 80 not in the bare metal finish. Ex Reno Air.



Geaux Tigers! Geaux Hornets! Geaux Saints! WHO DAT!!!
User currently offlineFalcon flyer From United States of America, joined Jul 2000, 1325 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (8 years 7 months 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 3490 times:

Spirit operated a single MD-87 as did Eagle Jet Charters, which, IIRC was a division of the Fokker 27 operator. Eagle also operated a DC9-10 and an MD-82 for a short time. Great American also operated the MD-87 alongside the DC9-10 for a short while.


My definition of cool ? Not trying so hard to be cool.
User currently offlineLTU932 From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 13864 posts, RR: 50
Reply 5, posted (8 years 7 months 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 3464 times:

Though not a US airline, IB used to operate MD-87s in the US when they were operating the MIA hub. Those were used as DC-9 replacements, while the MD-87 was replaced by the A319, and today the IB MIA hub is gone.

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User currently offlineMidway7 From United States of America, joined Aug 2004, 152 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (8 years 7 months 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 3435 times:

Midway I launched the MD87 in 1988 I believe. I remember seeing it for the first time at the Chicago air and water show in August of that year. It was a nice plane at the time. It allowed Midway I to remove 737-200's, streamline their fleet to DC9's and MD80's, and start flights from MDW to the west coast - something not fully possible with the 737-200's.

I would imagine the powerful engines were due in part to Midway's performance needs associated with Midway Airport.

I believe the reason the type did not catch on is its weight. I understand that it's a heavy aircraft and the costs of operation are the same as the other MD-80's, that carry 20-30 more pax.

Midway 7


User currently offlineTango-Bravo From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 3805 posts, RR: 29
Reply 7, posted (8 years 7 months 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 3435 times:

Quoting MSYtristar (Thread starter):
Where did the M87 go wrong?

Like another McDD latter-day retread of a 25-year old design (MD-11) the MD-87 was considered overweight, hence inefficient, relative to its maximum payload.


User currently offlineFalcon flyer From United States of America, joined Jul 2000, 1325 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (8 years 7 months 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 3423 times:

Quoting Midway7 (Reply 6):
Midway I launched the MD87 in 1988 I believe.

Didn't a European carrier launch the MD-87 ? Austrian or SAS seems to ring a bell.



My definition of cool ? Not trying so hard to be cool.
User currently offlineCO737800 From Canada, joined Dec 2003, 545 posts, RR: 1
Reply 9, posted (8 years 7 months 2 days 22 hours ago) and read 3338 times:

Allegiant has a few of them, I flew one from Vegas to Bellingham its a nice aircraft.Does anyone know who Allegiant got them from?

User currently offlineA340Spotter From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 1981 posts, RR: 23
Reply 10, posted (8 years 7 months 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 3249 times:

Allegiant got their first 2 MD-87s from Fordair, the flying division based in the UK for Ford Motor company. This is why they flew around in a white/red/blue scheme for a while before being painted in the current colors. The planes were used by the JPATS program for a short while in between Fordair and AAY time, flown by Miami Air pilots (allegedly)...


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Jeffrey



"Irregardless, it's a Cat III airplane, we don't need an alternate!"
User currently offlineFalcon flyer From United States of America, joined Jul 2000, 1325 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (8 years 7 months 2 days 3 hours ago) and read 3121 times:

Private Jet (Expeditions) was another US operator of the MD-87 with a larger fleet of MD-83s and a single MD-82. The airline also operated a B727-200 having initially started operations with a 727-100.


My definition of cool ? Not trying so hard to be cool.
User currently offlineEilennaei From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (8 years 7 months 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 3020 times:

Quoting Falcon flyer (Reply 8):
Didn't a European carrier launch the MD-87 ? Austrian or SAS seems to ring a bell.

"McDonnell Douglas launched development of the MD-87 on January 3 1985, following the placement of launch orders from Finnair and Austrian in December 1984." (airliners.net)


User currently offlineMika From Sweden, joined Jul 2000, 2881 posts, RR: 3
Reply 13, posted (8 years 7 months 1 day 21 hours ago) and read 2993 times:

I personally like this machine alot and i am surprised that it's used far more in Europe than in the US. SAS, Iberia and Spanair are all pretty large MD87 customers while for the US market i can't come up with any significant carrier operating it (except what's mentioned above).

User currently offlineATCRick From United States of America, joined Jun 2004, 772 posts, RR: 12
Reply 14, posted (8 years 7 months 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 2886 times:
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I believe Allegiant is the only current US air carrier operating them here in the US. Correct me if I am wrong.


natch!!
User currently offlineMDW22L31C From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 213 posts, RR: 1
Reply 15, posted (8 years 7 months 6 hours ago) and read 2718 times:

AeroMexico has MD-87 service on the weekends from ONT-SJD

User currently offlineFalcon flyer From United States of America, joined Jul 2000, 1325 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (8 years 7 months 3 hours ago) and read 2608 times:

Quoting ATCRick (Reply 14):
I believe Allegiant is the only current US air carrier operating them here in the US. Correct me if I am wrong.

Correct, but the last issue of Aviation Letter actually listed both aircraft (N948MA & N945MA) stored at Sanford WFU. Still trying to get someone to confirm that.



My definition of cool ? Not trying so hard to be cool.
User currently offlineFATFlyer From United States of America, joined May 2001, 5804 posts, RR: 14
Reply 17, posted (8 years 6 months 4 weeks 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 2524 times:

Quoting Falcon flyer (Reply 16):
Correct, but the last issue of Aviation Letter actually listed both aircraft (N948MA & N945MA) stored at Sanford WFU. Still trying to get someone to confirm that.

Well ATCRick is "the man" to answer that question definitively since he does dispatch at G4. But I haven't heard anything about those 2 being withdrawn.



"Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness." - Mark Twain
User currently offlineQQflyboy From United States of America, joined Oct 2003, 2282 posts, RR: 13
Reply 18, posted (8 years 6 months 4 weeks 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 2493 times:

Quoting Tango-Bravo (Reply 7):
Like another McDD latter-day retread of a 25-year old design (MD-11) the MD-87 was considered overweight, hence inefficient, relative to its maximum payload.

Let us not forget the Boeing 717 was born the MD-95, the new version of the MD-87. Just like the MD-90 sought to modernize the MD-80, so was the plan for the MD-95. Boeing bought MD while the MD-95 was still in the design phase and decided to rebadge it the 717 and give it a "Boeing" cockpit. Otherwise, the 717 is a modern MD-87.



The views expressed are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect my employer’s views.
User currently offlineFalcon flyer From United States of America, joined Jul 2000, 1325 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (8 years 6 months 4 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 2394 times:

Quoting FATFlyer (Reply 17):
Well ATCRick is "the man" to answer that question definitively since he does dispatch at G4. But I haven't heard anything about those 2 being withdrawn.

I hope you're right, the Allegiant colors look particularly good on the -87. It's possible that the info about them being WFU is inaccurate as the February issue of AL lists N751RA as being acquired by AAY. IIRC, that aircraft was the one briefly operated by Spirit.



My definition of cool ? Not trying so hard to be cool.
User currently offlineMSYtristar From United States of America, joined Aug 2005, 6570 posts, RR: 50
Reply 20, posted (8 years 6 months 4 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 2394 times:

Quoting QQflyboy (Reply 18):
Otherwise, the 717 is a modern MD-87.

Just a little shorter and not as much range, but otherwise, just alike.  Smile


User currently offlineLTU932 From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 13864 posts, RR: 50
Reply 21, posted (8 years 6 months 4 weeks 20 hours ago) and read 2342 times:

Quoting QQflyboy (Reply 18):
Boeing bought MD while the MD-95 was still in the design phase and decided to rebadge it the 717 and give it a "Boeing" cockpit.

Boeing cockpit only in name, as I believe on the yoke it says "Boeing 717". The cockpit itself is pretty much the same EFIS flightdeck from the MD-11, only adapted to the MD-95/Boeing 717.


User currently offlineFATFlyer From United States of America, joined May 2001, 5804 posts, RR: 14
Reply 22, posted (8 years 6 months 4 weeks 9 hours ago) and read 2269 times:

Quoting Falcon flyer (Reply 19):
February issue of AL lists N751RA as being acquired by AAY. IIRC, that aircraft was the one briefly operated by Spirit.

Being renumbered as N949MA for Allegiant. Also looks like Allegiant is buying, not leasing it. The other 2 are still registered to Wells Fargo.



"Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness." - Mark Twain
User currently offlineN1120A From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 26493 posts, RR: 75
Reply 23, posted (8 years 6 months 4 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 2244 times:

Quoting FATFlyer (Reply 22):
Also looks like Allegiant is buying, not leasing it.

Question. Do you have any idea how much of their fleet G4 leases as compares to owns? I can see positives and negatives for both (low lease rates/full depreciation v. Ultra Cheap purchase costs and Asset building).



Mangeons les French fries, mais surtout pratiquons avec fierte le French kiss
User currently offlineFATFlyer From United States of America, joined May 2001, 5804 posts, RR: 14
Reply 24, posted (8 years 6 months 4 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 2221 times:

Quoting N1120A (Reply 23):
Question. Do you have any idea how much of their fleet G4 leases as compares to owns?

I don't track that but I see in the FAA registration database that Allegiant is shown as the owner of 11 currently registered aircraft with additional reg numbers reserved for the future. So roughly 1/2 the fleet may be leased currently.
http://registry.faa.gov/aircraftinqu...tion=5&cmndfind.x=18&cmndfind.y=15



"Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness." - Mark Twain
25 Atcrick : Negative. Both aircraft are based in SFB and fly almost every day.
26 1337Delta764 : I have never heard of the 717 having the problem of being overweight like the MD-87. I always thought the 717 as a modernized DC-9-30 with new engine
27 Falcon flyer : Glad to hear it, thanks for the update.
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