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McDonnell Douglas MD-80: A Classic  
User currently offlineMSYtristar From United States of America, joined Aug 2005, 6413 posts, RR: 51
Posted (6 years 11 months 3 weeks 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 12007 times:

You know, I used to not really like the MD-80 all that much back when we still had the 727's flying all over the place. I always thought of the M80 as a poor man's 727. Two engines, not three. Two pilots, not three. 2+3 seating, not 3+3 seating....and so on, and so forth. Obviously, the idea of efficiency was not at the forefront of a 15 year olds mind back in the day.  Wink It just never quite measured up to the 727, which, when it was flying, I would go out of my way to fly on...a marvelous plane. I have about 32 flights on 727-200's under my belt, and i'm very proud of that fact, since it's unlikely I'll get anymore. But now, seeing how there are so many 737's and A320's flying around....great planes to be certain, but hardly original from the exterior...I have come to appreciate the MD-80 and its legacy more and more over the past few years. No, it doesn't feature all of the creature comforts of the new 737/320 series aircraft...some people downright loathe the idea of flying one on a 4.5 hour semi transcon from ORD to SFO...but there's just something about the sound of those P&W's spooling up on the takeoff roll. It just sounds like a classic airliner, and it has the looks to match. Thankfully we'll still see it in service for the next decade at least thanks to the large M80 series fleet of AA and DL. But you know all good things come to an end, so we might as well appreciate the aircraft while they are here. The M80 has built itself a pretty decent legacy since it entered airline service nearly 27 years ago. I salute you, MD-80. Thanks for the 41 excellent flights so far, and I look forward to more.

Here are a few pics from an AAmazing MD-80 flight in April, '06:

http://i2.photobucket.com/albums/y34/Nolaguy79/AAS80-1.jpg









I've flown on MD-80's with the following air carriers:


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Photo © B.Nazim



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Photo © Andy kennaugh



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Photo © Joerg A. Dittmer



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Photo © Frank C. Duarte Jr.



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Photo © Frank C. Duarte Jr.



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Photo © Bob Garrard



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Photo © Frank C. Duarte Jr.



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Photo © Gregg Stansbery




Next trip: MSY-SEA-GEG-SEA-LWS-BOI-PDX-SEA-LAS on AS
52 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineAASuper80 From United States of America, joined Dec 2005, 51 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (6 years 11 months 3 weeks 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 11973 times:

Great post!!! I concur, the MD80 is a great aircraft!!! Had some of my best flights on the S80 ORD-SFO Mid-cons!!!
 bigthumbsup 


User currently offlineN844AA From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 1352 posts, RR: 1
Reply 2, posted (6 years 11 months 3 weeks 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 11967 times:

Quoting AASuper80 (Reply 1):
Great post!!!

Fitting guy to post in this thread  Wink

I don't think there's a plane I'd rather fly than one of AA's MD-80s. Clean, comfortable and so quiet if you manage to get up front. That's one of the things I miss most about switching my flying from AA to CO. It's nice to know they'll be around for another decade or so, at least, but I'm going to miss them when they're all gone.



New airplanes, new employees, low fares, all touchy-feely ... all of them are losers. -Gordon Bethune
User currently offlineTrijetsRMissed From United States of America, joined Oct 2006, 2241 posts, RR: 7
Reply 3, posted (6 years 11 months 3 weeks 6 days 14 hours ago) and read 11940 times:

That was a great post. I took the MD-80 series for granted as well when the 727 was around in masses, but I have grown more fond of it since. I have taken AA MD-80's to virtually everywhere from ORD, as far as SEA, with along with SFO and LAX may be some of the longest MD-80 flights out there.

MSYtristar, as a side note the AA pic of N290AA was the last one I flew this March, TUS-ORD.  smile 



There's nothing quite like a tri-jet.
User currently offlineJaws707 From United States of America, joined Aug 2001, 708 posts, RR: 1
Reply 4, posted (6 years 11 months 3 weeks 6 days 14 hours ago) and read 11896 times:

Quoting MSYtristar (Thread starter):
No, it doesn't feature all of the creature comforts of the new 737/320 series aircraft

I actually find it more comfortable to fly on the MD-80 rather than a 737/A320. Granted each time I have sat in the 2 seat part of the row rather then the 3 part, but I absolutely love having either the window or the aisle and having 1/2 the chance of getting the middle seat as I would in a 737/A320.


User currently offlineMSYtristar From United States of America, joined Aug 2005, 6413 posts, RR: 51
Reply 5, posted (6 years 11 months 3 weeks 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 11810 times:

Quoting TrijetsRMissed (Reply 3):
as a side note the AA pic of N290AA was the last one I flew this March, TUS-ORD

Nice to see them getting around the country still...MSY, ORD, TUS....good utilization there!



Next trip: MSY-SEA-GEG-SEA-LWS-BOI-PDX-SEA-LAS on AS
User currently offlineConcordeBoy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (6 years 11 months 3 weeks 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 11796 times:

NOTHING in aviation is better than the interior sound of an M80's takeoff spoolup!!!

User currently offlineMSYtristar From United States of America, joined Aug 2005, 6413 posts, RR: 51
Reply 7, posted (6 years 11 months 3 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 11791 times:

Quoting ConcordeBoy (Reply 6):
NOTHING in aviation is better than the interior sound of an M80's takeoff spoolup!!!

What the hell...we agree on something??? I think ribs are in order just for that!



Next trip: MSY-SEA-GEG-SEA-LWS-BOI-PDX-SEA-LAS on AS
User currently offlineConcordeBoy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (6 years 11 months 3 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 11781 times:

what are you talking about Dor'thy, we usually agree on plenty of stuff..... most notably that Alibooboo sucks  Smile

User currently offlineMSYtristar From United States of America, joined Aug 2005, 6413 posts, RR: 51
Reply 9, posted (6 years 11 months 3 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 11772 times:

Quoting ConcordeBoy (Reply 8):
what are you talking about Dor'thy, we usually agree on plenty of stuff

I know, I just needed an excuse to go eat ribs again, and saying that we hardly ever agree but did so this time would constitute a reason to celebrate.

Quoting ConcordeBoy (Reply 8):
most notably that Alibooboo sucks

Oh come on now. What's Mr. Green Wave himself done to you this time?



Next trip: MSY-SEA-GEG-SEA-LWS-BOI-PDX-SEA-LAS on AS
User currently offlineConcordeBoy From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 10, posted (6 years 11 months 3 weeks 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 11766 times:

Quoting MSYtristar (Reply 9):
I know, I just needed an excuse to go eat ribs again

it'd have to be Kabby's though, not VooDoo this time.

Quoting MSYtristar (Reply 9):
What's Mr. Green Wave himself done to you this time?

Existed.


User currently offlineColumba From Germany, joined Dec 2004, 7027 posts, RR: 4
Reply 11, posted (6 years 11 months 3 weeks 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 11602 times:

Quoting MSYtristar (Thread starter):
But now, seeing how there are so many 737's and A320's flying around....great planes to be certain, but hardly original from the exterior...I have come to appreciate the MD-80 and its legacy more and more over the past few years.

I agree with you on that. In Germany I hardly see any MD 80s anymore but being here in the New York, New Jersey area I see plenty of DL and AA aircraft on their approach to Newark and La Guardia and it makes me feel really great to see the long T-Tail cruising the sky.
But so far my best sightings since I am here were the Fedex Dc MD 10s on approach to EWR and the other day I was very thrilled to see an UPS Dc 8 !!!



It will forever be a McDonnell Douglas MD 80 , Boeing MD 80 sounds so wrong
User currently offlineTAN FLYR From United States of America, joined Aug 2000, 1897 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (6 years 11 months 3 weeks 6 days 4 hours ago) and read 11539 times:

I'll have to agree..I really like the MD-80..Yup I also used to perceive themm as a poor mans 727..until the day I found out the degree of cost savings of the MD-80 over the 727 on an average 3 hr flight..No wonder they went to the boneyard so fast after 9-11.

Yup, the 727 was the workhorse of her day..and her days lasted almost 40 years..But the dynamic twin from Long beach has the new title (along with the 737).

By the time the last ones are ever off the active roster at say AA, the MD-80 will have a 40 year run also..bet on it..any they will live on for years in second / third tier service. (see DC-8 longevity)

Have a great week!


User currently offlinePITPirate From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 23 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (6 years 11 months 3 weeks 6 days 4 hours ago) and read 11535 times:

What a great aircraft the MD-80 -- I agree, when you sit in the rear and hear those engines, it really feels like you have some thrust & power underneath of you, not so much on the newer 737/A320 -- Long May She Soar. (My 1st. post -- long time reader of the forums, finally decided to break down & join)

User currently offlineWestIndian425 From United States of America, joined May 2004, 1014 posts, RR: 1
Reply 14, posted (6 years 11 months 3 weeks 6 days 4 hours ago) and read 11514 times:

Having taken a ride on them with BWIA, I grew fond of the Mad-Dog. It still has one of the best (translation: steepest  Smile)takeoffs I've ever seen.


God did not create aircraft pilots to be on the ground
User currently offlineUAL747 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 15, posted (6 years 11 months 3 weeks 6 days 3 hours ago) and read 11505 times:

I actually prefer to sit in the front of the cabin, or as close to the front as possible. Not that I don't like hearing the engines, but the MD-80 has a really awesome feel up there. It's SOOOO quiet on take off, barely any engine noise at all and you sort of here this low wooooosh and you are pushed back into your seat as the plane takes off, again with hardly any noise. It reminds a lot of doing a full throttle onto the interstate in a Lexus LS430. Those cars have a lot of power, however you hardly hear the engine.

But as for the MD-80 as a whole, I love the bird. They definitely beat anyones 737-200/300/400/500 series and well, I just think that airbus narrowbodies are fugly. But, I do have to say that the NG 737's are pretty nice and hard to beat. Especially with those great winglets.

UAL


User currently offlineFlyorski From United States of America, joined Dec 2004, 987 posts, RR: 1
Reply 16, posted (6 years 11 months 3 weeks 6 days 3 hours ago) and read 11478 times:

I love the Mad Dogs, but I do not think they where the poor mans 727, that was the DC-9 (earlier of course)  Wink

However, AA does need to do some cabin work on them, the interiors have remained unchanged for a while now.



"None are more hopelessly enslaved, than those who falsly believe they are free" -Goethe
User currently offlineN766UA From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 8094 posts, RR: 24
Reply 17, posted (6 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 11210 times:

They're good to fly on, but the bins are by far the worst out there and they're broken more than any other airplane in our fleet. Cool airplanes, they make alot of noise, and the front cabin is quiet, but it really is one of the more unreliable airplanes out there.


This Website Censors Me
User currently offlineTrijetsRMissed From United States of America, joined Oct 2006, 2241 posts, RR: 7
Reply 18, posted (6 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 17 hours ago) and read 11129 times:

One of the great things about the MD-80 series is the powerful and steep take-off. Compared to the 727, it takes off like a rocket. The best part of the flight.

Quoting Flyorski (Reply 16):
AA does need to do some cabin work on them, the interiors have remained unchanged for a while now.

I think AA re-did the cabins of a portion of the fleet in the late 90's - early 2000's. I find the cabins to be much more comfortable than the AA 757's, which don't have a headrest. I have been on a couple of the oldest MD-82's that were built in '83, and I will admit the cabins were a bit tired.

Quoting N766UA (Reply 17):
it really is one of the more unreliable airplanes out there.

Interestingly enough, I have never had a delay on an MD-80 because the aircraft went mechanical. Conversely, it's happened to me on both the A320 and 737NG.



There's nothing quite like a tri-jet.
User currently offlinePGNCS From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 2757 posts, RR: 45
Reply 19, posted (6 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 17 hours ago) and read 11107 times:

Quoting MSYtristar (Thread starter):
No, it doesn't feature all of the creature comforts of the new 737/320 series aircraft

I think it's more comfortable, and I really like the odds for avoiding a middle seat!

Quoting N766UA (Reply 17):
They're good to fly on, but the bins are by far the worst out there and they're broken more than any other airplane in our fleet. Cool airplanes, they make alot of noise, and the front cabin is quiet, but it really is one of the more unreliable airplanes out there.

Have to disagree on the reliability. They are at or near the top of the reliability stats consistently at my airline. They get minor stuff deferred on them at a lot of carriers because they work so hard with short turn times and MX never has time to fix them.

Quoting TrijetsRMissed (Reply 18):
Interestingly enough, I have never had a delay on an MD-80 because the aircraft went mechanical. Conversely, it's happened to me on both the A320 and 737NG.

I've had MX delays on all three but with over 10,000 hours in the DC-9/MD-80 family, I can say that it rarely breaks hard, and when it does it's normally a relatively quick fix. (Exceptions are hydraulics, sometimes, and flight controls...the slat actuation drum is a pain for MX to work on, but the techs on here can tell you more about that!)

The MD is a great plane which is frequently underestimated. Like the A-320 there's a lot of misinformation out here about the MD, but in my acquaintance, it's a great airplane, and I expect to spend a few thousand more hours in it before they go away.


User currently offlineLHStarAlliance From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 20, posted (6 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 11103 times:

Quoting MSYtristar (Thread starter):

I flew on such an A/C some years ago and I was surpirsed of how silent the cabin was !
Far better than any other .


Konstantin


User currently offlineAsturias From Spain, joined Apr 2006, 2038 posts, RR: 16
Reply 21, posted (6 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 10971 times:

I adore the MD80s  Smile

One of the nicest design out there and really tough machines. No high-tech wizardry aboard, the CD9 legacy in full life. Comfortable to fly on short sub 2 hr flights and really quiet when sitting in the front.

I'm going to miss them when they're gone..

saludos

Asturias



Tonight we fly
User currently offlinePC12Fan From United States of America, joined Jan 2007, 2378 posts, RR: 5
Reply 22, posted (6 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 10953 times:

Just wish we could see a bunch of them with these on 'em.


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Photo © Stewart Andrew
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Photo © A J Best




Just when I think you've said the stupidest thing ever, you keep talkin'!
User currently offlineTSS From United States of America, joined Dec 2006, 3050 posts, RR: 5
Reply 23, posted (6 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 10916 times:

Quoting N766UA (Reply 17):
it really is one of the more unreliable airplanes out there.



Quoting TrijetsRMissed (Reply 18):
I have never had a delay on an MD-80 because the aircraft went mechanical.



Quoting PGNCS (Reply 19):
with over 10,000 hours in the DC-9/MD-80 family, I can say that it rarely breaks hard, and when it does it's normally a relatively quick fix.

I've suffered only two mechanical delays, both on MD-80s, and in both cases it took much longer for the tech to get to the plane than it did for him to fix the plane once he was there.

(Although I didn't see either tech at work, I imagine the "fixes" consisted of a few well-placed whacks from the handle of a screwdriver followed by a satisfying "thunk-hmmmmmmm..." from the recalcitrant machinery and then the tech buttoning up the access plate and saying "There. Good as new".
Honestly, in both cases the fixes were that fast.)



Able to kill active threads stone dead with a single post!
User currently offlineBeechNut From Canada, joined exactly 10 years ago today! , 720 posts, RR: 10
Reply 24, posted (6 years 11 months 3 weeks 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 10868 times:

Well, let's just roll things back a bit. An MD-80, by any other name, is a DC-9. In fact the MD81, 82 and 83 are listed as DC-9-81, -82 and -83 on the type certificate (not sure about the -87, the MD88 is an MD88 on the TC if I recall).

So when one lauds the MD80, one in fact is lauding one of the finest designs out there, certainly the finest ever from McDonnell-Douglas, the DC-9. If you count the 717, which really was a DC-9, this aircraft had a production run lasting nearly 40 years. It so far appears only one aircraft will surpass that, the 747, which will be 40 in 2009.

Well not even the DC-3 can claim that. In fact the entire production life of the DC-9 surpasses the DC-3's service life in mainline service (first DC-3: 1936...how many were in mainline service in 1976? Zero). Surely, if ever there was a DC-3 of the Jet Age, the DC-9, up to and including the MD80 and 717 series, is it. A twin, go anywhere, make money machine. The oldest airframes in mainline service would have to be NWs DC-9s. A truly great aircraft by all measures, and in legendary MD fashion, built like a tank.

And as great a machine as the 727 was, let's face it, the DC-9/MD-80 has outlived it. Simply due to better economics.

Beech.


25 Falstaff : I would agree. I flew on a 39 year old NW DC-9-40 a few weeks ago and I think NW has a DC-9 or two built in 1967. If there are DC-9s still flying at
26 Delta787 : The MD-80 is a great plane. Its quiet and the lack of middle seat on the one side is great. I will miss it when it is gone from Delta's fleet.
27 CV990 : Hi! First time I flew in a MD80 or at that time DC-9-80 was in September 1981 from LIS to GVA with Swissair. At that time the Super 80 was starting to
28 Tancrede : I must be honest with myself, as a hardcore Airbus fan, and admit that I really do love to fly with the MD-90 (ok, it is not a MD-80, but same family)
29 TrijetsRMissed : I don't think the MD-87 was ever a "DC-9" as it was introduced a few years after McDonnell Douglas went with the "MD" moniker and the first with the
30 Orl777 : Great Post!!!! Long Life Mags Dogs!!!
31 Steeler83 : MSYTristar, how right you are! We really should enjoy what we have now before it's all gone. I've never been on a 732 and kinda regret it. I've also n
32 FlyingClrs727 : I used to love sitting on a window seat on a 727 and watch the flaps deploy for takeoffs and landings. I didn't care much for the 737-200's at first.
33 Woosie : DC-9-81/82/83/87 and MD-88; that's what the TCDS says (I looked at it earlier today at work). I really like the MD-80 series too, but I haven't ridde
34 Falstaff : I once saw somthing about NWs DC-9s and fleet average cycles and hours. I do not recall the numbers but I know the hours were well over 100,000. I wo
35 N62NA : And interestingly, the DC-8 is still in use as a cargo jet, while the 707 has all but disappeared.
36 FlyingClrs727 : Something like 250 707's were bought by the USAF to upgrade the KC-135 fleet. The tails and engines were taken off 707's and installed on KC-135A mod
37 Post contains images United_Fan : I'de prefer a DC-9 sitting near the rear,but that's just me This also has to do with the DC-8's taller landing gear,which made it easier to stretch a
38 Post contains images MD80Nut : As my user name might suggest, I'm a huge fan of the MD80 and all the Mighty Mad Dog Twins. I've been fortunate to fly on all of them except the DC-9-
39 BlatantEcho : always went out of my way to book Alaska instead of Southwest when I knew I could get a ride on the MD80s. Favorite airliner by far when you're up fro
40 Falstaff : If you really want to fly on a DC-9-40 check out flights from DTW. I have flown on the -40s several times DTW-STL and back.
41 DIA : First off, nothing (to me) will ever beat the spool-up sounds of a 727and DC-9...love that whining. I too find myself enjoying the -80s more now than
42 MSYtristar : Great comments, guys. It's great to see that the MD-80 still has so many supporters out there after all these years. Generally in the past all i've re
43 United_Fan : NW flies these into ROC,make it a weekend!
44 MSYtristar : I was on CO flight #1775, MD-80 routing FLL-MSY-DEN, back in 1990... At the gate, the agent was proud to announce "now boarding Continental flight 17
45 757MDE : I also agree. I flew on Avianca's MD-83 and the ride was memorable. Here in Colombia sometimes one gets bored of watching so many MD-80s (the most com
46 Douwd20 : Sitting near the front of the plane during take-off is a surreal experience. Almost complete silence as the nose lifts off and a steep climb ensues. A
47 BeechNut : Just checked some FAA documents and indeed the MD-87 was, on the type certificate, DC-9-87. The MD88 was the start of the "MD" series on type certifi
48 Post contains images Tornado82 : I'll respectfully disagree. Not a fan of the DC-9 series of aircraft at all. I'll take a 737 any day. But then again I prefer ERJ-145's to both of the
49 Post contains images MD80fanatic : Wellllll, those DC-9s are old enough to be your mother. Each have travelled further than you will in your whole life, and they will be up bright and
50 Tornado82 : You're not kidding... one of the last NWA DC-9s I was on had a build date of 9/1968... so that plane's maiden voyage occurred within a few days of my
51 San747 : I have to admit, working the ramp with AA MD-80s has definitely given me a newfound appreciation and respect for them... But I will say I wish their b
52 Dash8pilot : Does anyone have an acurate list of all the operators in the world that still operate this lovely aircraft???
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