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Delta - Why The MD-88 Over The 737-400?  
User currently offline1337Delta764 From United States of America, joined Oct 2005, 6632 posts, RR: 2
Posted (8 years 4 months 20 hours ago) and read 10380 times:

Why did Delta choose the MD-88 over the 737-400? The 737-400 might have reduced costs as it shares a common type rating with the 737-300, most of which entered the fleet before the MD-88s. I do understand that Delta's relationship with McDonnell Douglas went sour when the MD-11 did not meet the performance that MD promised, and the MD-90 suffered mechanical issues. Any thoughts on this?


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15 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineNorthStarDC4M From Canada, joined Apr 2000, 3056 posts, RR: 36
Reply 1, posted (8 years 4 months 19 hours ago) and read 10325 times:
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ok well a couple reasons i can think of:

Delta ordered the MD-80 before it had/ordered 737-300s i believe, and before the Western takeover.

Delta was long a "Douglas" airline, and still had many DC-9s in service when the MD-80 order was made. As you said the Md-11 soured and the MD-90 basically nailed the coffin shut on that.

Also as i recall Delta Engineering didnt like the CFM-56 underwing mounting on the 737 for FOD? And something about servicing issues... maybe lack of the tail airstairs on the 737, im a bit fuzzy on that.



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User currently offlineSESGDL From United States of America, joined Jan 2001, 3489 posts, RR: 10
Reply 2, posted (8 years 4 months 19 hours ago) and read 10283 times:

Likely for many of the same reasons that most airlines ordered MD-80s over 737-400s.

Jeremy


User currently offlineDutchjet From Netherlands, joined Oct 2000, 7864 posts, RR: 57
Reply 3, posted (8 years 4 months 18 hours ago) and read 10217 times:

Dont forget that DL also placed a large 737-300 order which it cancelled...a few of the Delta 737-332s were actually built, sold off of the assembly line and I think are with a Chinese carrier. And, Deltas 737-232s were ordered only because DL needed airplanes quickly back in the early 1980s....DL really wanted 72S aircraft, but the delivery times were very long back then so the 732s were a second choice.

DL was an original DC9 customer, and was loyal to Douglas and never really committed to the 737......they placed the small 732 order mentioned above, acquired some 732s and 733s via the Western deal and picked up additional 733s on the second hand market, and placed and cancelled their own 733 order, but DL always seemed to prefer the McD alternative. DL even had a large MD90 order......

Delta was a longstanding McD Douglas customer, and the MD88 fit its needs, so they went with that type. So simple is it.


User currently offline1337Delta764 From United States of America, joined Oct 2005, 6632 posts, RR: 2
Reply 4, posted (8 years 4 months 18 hours ago) and read 10151 times:

Since Delta was a McDonnell Douglas customer, I should also wonder why Delta went with the 737-300 over the MD-87.


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User currently offlineDutchjet From Netherlands, joined Oct 2000, 7864 posts, RR: 57
Reply 5, posted (8 years 4 months 17 hours ago) and read 10098 times:

Quoting 1337Delta764 (Reply 4):
Since Delta was a McDonnell Douglas customer, I should also wonder why Delta went with the 737-300 over the MD-87.

Delta did not go with the 733......as I said above, DL cancelled its order for the 733 and never accepted delivery of any of the newly build airplanes. DL acquired its 733s from two sources....the airplanes recieved as part of the Western deal and some used 733s acquired on the second hand market (primarily ex-Germania airplanes, the glass cockpit examples) when DL was looking to grow its fleet quickly.

As for the MD87, DL never seemed interested in the smaller type (the DL 732s covered this market.....) and MD87s were built in small numbers and thus not many were ever available on the second hand market.


User currently offlineCRJ900 From Norway, joined Jun 2004, 2219 posts, RR: 1
Reply 6, posted (8 years 4 months 17 hours ago) and read 10057 times:
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IIRC, Jane's Aircraft Directory in the early 1990s showed that DL had orders and options for 124 x MD90s(!)... too bad only 16 were made.


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User currently offlineDutchjet From Netherlands, joined Oct 2000, 7864 posts, RR: 57
Reply 7, posted (8 years 4 months 17 hours ago) and read 10047 times:

Quoting CRJ900 (Reply 6):
IIRC, Jane's Aircraft Directory in the early 1990s showed that DL had orders and options for 124 x MD90s(!)... too bad only 16 were made.

I am sure that you realize that Boeing had something to do with those 108 additional MD90s never being built......think 737-800.


User currently offlineCkfred From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 5293 posts, RR: 1
Reply 8, posted (8 years 4 months 12 hours ago) and read 9872 times:

My guess is that since Delta had a large fleet of DC-9s, it just made sense to go with another variant from the DC-9 line.

Obviously, there are significant differences between the DC-9s and the MD-88s, but there is a lot in common, including the engines. The DC-9, the 727-200 (which was also in the DL fleet), and the MD-88 use different versions of the P&W JT8-D.


User currently offlineDL_Mech From United States of America, joined Feb 2000, 1979 posts, RR: 9
Reply 9, posted (8 years 4 months 11 hours ago) and read 9864 times:

Quoting Dutchjet (Reply 5):
Delta did not go with the 733......as I said above, DL cancelled its order for the 733 and never accepted delivery of any of the newly build airplanes.

Actually, five 737-332's were delivered in the early -90's. IIRC, the two that went to Turkmenistan were operated by DL for a little over a year, the two that went to China Xinhua were delivered but never operated by DL and the single plane that went to Phillipine Airlines was not flown by DL

ALL five planes (N301DE-N305DE) were delivered to ATL and two were actually painted in the widget livery.

FYI, One of the Turkmenistan planes is shown in an early episode of "Airport" (UK Version) that still had DL seatcovers installed.

[Edited 2006-07-29 06:58:25]

[Edited 2006-07-29 07:08:39]


This plane is built to withstand anything... except a bad pilot.
User currently offlineJmhluv2fly From United States of America, joined Dec 1999, 559 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (8 years 4 months 7 hours ago) and read 9738 times:

The MD-88 was designed by McDonnell Douglas to fit Delta specifications. Delta went to McDonnell Dougles in the early 80's and said in so many words, we need an alternative to the 727, and in its day, the 88 was an excellent alternative. The 88 was more fuel efficient, operating on two engines versus three on the 27, the 88 had state of the art technology in the flight deck, it was a great airplane with passenger apeal and Delta designed the 88 from nose to tail with its ideas in mind. Delta went to MD again a few years later and once again provided input on the design of an even larger "DC-9", the
MD-90, in a book I have, the information states that Delta touted the MD-90 as "Our Aircraft of the Future". They placed a large order for the type.
Airplane came out around 1995 or so, couple years later, MD was absorbed by Boeing, about that time, Delta started having problems with replacement parts on the 90, and Boeing was coming out with new generation 37's, it became more feasable to go with Boeings product I suppose and the rest is history.
So, Delta is to receive credit for the MD-88 and MD-90 as we know it today, it is their baby.

JMH-Pensacola, Florida.


User currently offlineDAL767400ER From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 11, posted (8 years 4 months 6 hours ago) and read 9688 times:

Quoting Dutchjet (Reply 7):
I am sure that you realize that Boeing had something to do with those 108 additional MD90s never being built......think 737-800.

No doubt about that. Same as with the 30+30 order for the MD-11 (think 777), though in that case it was abit McDD's own fault.


User currently offlineCPDC10-30 From United Kingdom, joined Feb 2000, 4795 posts, RR: 23
Reply 12, posted (8 years 4 months 6 hours ago) and read 9684 times:

Quoting Jmhluv2fly (Reply 10):
Delta designed the 88 from nose to tail with its ideas in mind

I think thats a bit of an exaggeration. The MD-88 is just an -83 with a glass cockpit and different interior.


User currently offlineDutchjet From Netherlands, joined Oct 2000, 7864 posts, RR: 57
Reply 13, posted (8 years 4 months 6 hours ago) and read 9680 times:

Quoting DL_Mech (Reply 9):
Actually, five 737-332's were delivered in the early -90's. IIRC, the two that went to Turkmenistan were operated by DL for a little over a year, the two that went to China Xinhua were delivered but never operated by DL and the single plane that went to Phillipine Airlines was not flown by DL

ALL five planes (N301DE-N305DE) were delivered to ATL and two were actually painted in the widget livery.

Thanks for pointing that out (and correcting me!)......I honestly thought that none of the DL 737-332s ever flew for DL, I remember seeing a pic of one or two painted in Delta colors, but thats it. Interesting info....cheers!


User currently offlineDl_mech From United States of America, joined Feb 2000, 1979 posts, RR: 9
Reply 14, posted (8 years 3 months 4 weeks 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 9445 times:

Quoting Dutchjet (Reply 13):
I remember seeing a pic of one or two painted in Delta colors, but thats it.

If you find it, please post a link to it. I looked for one but could not find one. I don't know which pilots flew the planes (they were glass cockpit, before the Germania planes came to DL), or what routes they flew, but a couple definitely flew for DL.



This plane is built to withstand anything... except a bad pilot.
User currently offlineJmhluv2fly From United States of America, joined Dec 1999, 559 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (8 years 3 months 4 weeks 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 9403 times:

CPDC-10-30 states
"The MD-88 is just an -83 with a glass cockpit and different interior."

And Delta was the customer who asked McDonnell Dougles to build that 83 with a glass cockpit and different interior. According to a book I have,
"Airliners In Flight", by Nickolas A. Veronico and George Hall Delta assembled teams to assist MD in providing input in what they Delta wanted in a new airplane. Both in the design of the MD-88 and MD-90 I suppose when Delta said yeah, we want you all to build us a new plane and we plan to order a good 150 + of them, McDonnell Douglas probably didnt think twice. And of course other airlines ordered the type as well, so for an airplane with simply just a glass cockpit a different interior, the improved
MD-83 has done well for Delta and it sold well for MD.

JMH


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