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Braniff Single 747 & D-Checks  
User currently offlineNomadic From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 431 posts, RR: 0
Posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 15 hours ago) and read 8693 times:

During the period that Braniff operated a single 747 on the DFW-HNL route, what did they do when the 'Great Pumbkin' was in for major overhauls? Did their South America DC-8s have the range to substitute on the Hawaii run?

I was never able visti Honolulu via the 'Pumpkin' but was lucky enough to fly her to London and back shortly after Braniff opened their DFW-LGW service.

nomadic :?)

22 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineLAXintl From United States of America, joined May 2000, 25173 posts, RR: 48
Reply 1, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 14 hours ago) and read 8565 times:

I'm not sure what Braniff did with its Hawaii flight, however I clearly recall it was TWA at its LAX hangar that did overhauls on the BN 747 fleet.


From the desert to the sea, to all of Southern California
User currently offlineTango-Bravo From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 3805 posts, RR: 29
Reply 2, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 13 hours ago) and read 8483 times:



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 1):
it was TWA at its LAX hangar that did overhauls on the BN 747 fleet.

So even though the more routine maintenance on N601BN was (originally) performed by AA at JFK, the same aircraft went to a different airline for overhaul? Or did BN at some point change from AA to TW for maintenance below D-Checks when the BN 747 fleet consisted of their one and only widebody aircraft?


User currently offlineFalstaff From United States of America, joined Jun 2006, 6088 posts, RR: 29
Reply 3, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 13 hours ago) and read 8434 times:
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There was an article about the lone BN 747 in a issue of Airways within the last year. I remember there was something about being continuously maintained so it wouldn't have to go out of service very often, but I don't recall what the plan was when it was in for service. I think it was something like they didn't sell tickets for days they knew it would be out of service. I might be wrong. I give away all my old issues of Airways or else I would have looked it up.


My mug slaketh over on Falstaff N503
User currently offlineTango-Bravo From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 3805 posts, RR: 29
Reply 4, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 12 hours ago) and read 8355 times:



Quoting Falstaff (Reply 3):
there was something about being continuously maintained so it wouldn't have to go out of service very often, but I don't recall what the plan was when it was in for service. I think it was something like they didn't sell tickets for days they knew it would be out of service.

Braniff would, at least on some days when N601BN was not available for its daily DAL-HNL-DAL turn (later DFW-HNL-DFW) due to scheduled maintenance, sub in DC-8 aircraft; 707s may also have served in this role. According to a caption below a photo of a BN DC-8-51 (ex-National) in George Cearley's illustrated history of Braniff, one way in which their DC-8-51s were utilized was "schedule support on routes to Hawaii..."


User currently offlineContrails From United States of America, joined Oct 2000, 1833 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 9 hours ago) and read 8154 times:



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 1):
clearly recall it was TWA at its LAX hangar that did overhauls on the BN 747 fleet.

I lived in Tulsa in the early 70's, and I clearly recall the "Great Pumpkin" arriving at the AA maintenance base at TUL, usually right around halloween. The Tulsa World usually put a picture of it in the paper, with a caption about the Great Pumpkin arriving. Unfortunately I can't remember what Braniff used to cover the HNL route while the 747 was at TUL.

A few years later I flew the Great Pumpkin from DFW to LGW. They used an SP on the way back. In 2004 I flew an AA 767 from DFW to HNL and flew over Lake Arlington, where years before, while fishing, I used to watch the Great Pumpkin fly by. It meant a lot to me, but it would have meant more had it been on Braniff. Sadly, Braniff's only a memory now.



Flying Colors Forever!
User currently offlineEMBQA From United States of America, joined Oct 2003, 9364 posts, RR: 11
Reply 6, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 9 hours ago) and read 8146 times:

Did Braniff even have the 747 long enough to reach a D-Check...? D-Checks are like every 8-10 years


"It's not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog"
User currently offlineSs278 From United States of America, joined Dec 1999, 64 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 9 hours ago) and read 8146 times:

They substituted a 707 on the days the Great Pumpkin was out of service. Its interesting to note that Boeing eventually bought N601BN back from Braniff as it was at then the highest time 747 in existence (with the lowest number of cycles) in order to study the airframe for ageing aircraft issues.

User currently offlineCospn From Northern Mariana Islands, joined Oct 2001, 1619 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 8 hours ago) and read 8084 times:

When did BN serve Guam how long ???

User currently offlineJetstar From United States of America, joined May 2003, 1645 posts, RR: 10
Reply 9, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 8 hours ago) and read 8062 times:
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Quoting Ss278 (Reply 7):
They substituted a 707 on the days the Great Pumpkin was out of service. Its interesting to note that Boeing eventually bought N601BN back from Braniff as it was at then the highest time 747 in existence (with the lowest number of cycles) in order to study the airframe for ageing aircraft issues.

Braniff kept 3 707’s on reserve in DAL in case their 747 would have to be taken out of service because of a maintenance problem, a single 707 could not carry all the passengers.

N601BN spent its final years with Tower Air. Len Morgan used to write a column in Flying Magazine about airline flying. In one of his last columns he wrote about finding N601BN, then renumbered sitting at the Tower Air ramp in JFK, it had already been withdrawn from service and was being used for parts. He had flown this airplane many times as a captain for Braniff and reminisced about those days.

I used to fly into DAL a lot and I can remember watching N601BN lumber down the runway taking off on a hot summer day from the corporate jet parking area while waiting for our passengers to show up and thinking it was not going to get off the ground before it runs out of runway.


User currently offlineCitationJet From United States of America, joined Mar 2003, 2434 posts, RR: 3
Reply 10, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 8 hours ago) and read 7996 times:

Braniff would send N601BN to LAX for maintenance. I remember flying as a non-rev on the ferry flight from Dallas Love Field (before DFW was built) to LAX. We would board the 747 in a hanger in DAL, then unload in a hanger in LAX. We were told to be back in the airport in 24 hours for the return flight to DAL.
During the flight there were no flight attendants, the pilots wore civilian clothes, there was no beverage or meal service. The one time I flew on it, there were about 30 to 50 employees and family members on board. Kids ran around and played hide and seek druing the flight and made tents out of blankets spread over the seats. Everyone took turns in the cockpit during the flight. Most of us took turns sitting in the observer's seat during the flight.
I don't recall what BN substituted when the 747 was in maintenance, but prior to the 747 entering service, BN used two 707-320s that departed about 15 minutes apart.
Their DC-8s definitely would have the range for the 8 hour flight two Hawaii. They used them on longer flights to South America; JFK to BUE, and LAX to SCL for instance.



Boeing Flown: 701,702,703;717;720;721,722;731,732,733,734,735,737,738,739;741,742,743,744,747SP;752,753;762,763;772,773.
User currently offlineZANL188 From United States of America, joined Oct 2006, 3520 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 8 hours ago) and read 7988 times:
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Quoting EMBQA (Reply 6):
Did Braniff even have the 747 long enough to reach a D-Check...? D-Checks are like every 8-10 years

Braniff had some insane ute rate on N601BN, something on the order of 18-19 hours day while it was on the Dallas/Hawaii route - it was setting records for sure. I'm sure it got to it's first D-check faster than any other 747, at least in terms of airframe hours.



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User currently offlineBohica From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 2691 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 7 hours ago) and read 7892 times:



Quoting Jetstar (Reply 9):
N601BN spent its final years with Tower Air. Len Morgan used to write a column in Flying Magazine about airline flying. In one of his last columns he wrote about finding N601BN, then renumbered sitting at the Tower Air ramp in JFK, it had already been withdrawn from service and was being used for parts.

Does anyone know if this was the 747 which sat in the corner next to Tower Air's terminal at JFK with many parts missing?


User currently offlineJetstar From United States of America, joined May 2003, 1645 posts, RR: 10
Reply 13, posted (5 years 11 months 1 week 6 hours ago) and read 7849 times:
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Quoting Bohica (Reply 12):
Does anyone know if this was the 747 which sat in the corner next to Tower Air's terminal at JFK with many parts missing?

There were more than 1 sitting on their ramp

I drove down the road next to their hangar ramp one time and saw about 4 or 5 747’s sitting there missing parts and engines.

I think towards the end they were buying airplanes and running them to their D check and just parking them for parts. At that time early –200’s were coming off of airline service and were available fairly cheap.


User currently offlineDesertJets From United States of America, joined Feb 2000, 7776 posts, RR: 16
Reply 14, posted (5 years 11 months 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 6417 times:



Quoting Jetstar (Reply 13):
There were more than 1 sitting on their ramp

I drove down the road next to their hangar ramp one time and saw about 4 or 5 747’s sitting there missing parts and engines.

I remember Len Morgan's article in Flying quite well, it was written sometime in the mid-90s IIRC. Unfortunately my teenaged stash of Flying is long gone so I can't go and dig it up. If I remember correctly N601BN was last used by Tower Air for airlift in Gulf War 1.0, then after that was taken out of service and became a parts hulk at JFK.

As for replacement when the Big Pumpkin went out of service for MX work, in the early days Morgan mentioned that 707s subbed in.



Stop drop and roll will not save you in hell. --- seen on a church marque in rural Virginia
User currently offlineSq2ams From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 15, posted (5 years 11 months 6 days 17 hours ago) and read 5940 times:

I can recall flying Braniff's "Great Pumpin" to HNL and then changing to PAA onward to HKG. Upon returning PAA to HNL and Braniff to Dallas, we boarded, happily after a 6 hour connection time and left the gate in HNL only to have the Great Pumpkin have an engine problem and return to the gate. I can attest that United did the maintence that day. BN sent us to a hotel and said they would pick us up 12 hours later. (Sadly, you won't see that service today) Personally I didn't object at all after flying from Hong Kong to Honolulu and waiting 6 hours for the connection. At this point I just wanted to sleep and I didn't care if it was on the plane or in a hotel. They picked us up as promised, we boarded and were on our way to Dallas. I believe those days are gone forever also, where the airline keeps you informed and does what they say they are going to do. BN was a great airline, my first jet flight was on a BN 707 and I watched the movie "One Flew Over The Cookoo's Nest" I certainly felt at home.

User currently offlineN702ML From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 16, posted (5 years 11 months 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 4877 times:



Quoting Cospn (Reply 8):
When did BN serve Guam how long ???

Braniff service to Guam (and Hong Kong) began on July 3, 1979.

Guam service started with two weekly nonstops to Hong Kong and two weekly nonstops to Honolulu (with continuing service to Los Angeles).

By October 1979, service was increased to three weekly nonstops to Hong Kong, two weekly nonstops to Honolulu (both continuing on to Los Angeles) and one weekly nonstop to Los Angeles.

Service remained pretty much the same until the summer of 1980 when the Guam-Honolulu route was dropped, leaving the Guam-Hong Kong and Guam-Los Angeles nonstops.

The fall of 1980 saw a major cut back of Braniff operations in the Pacific. All Braniff service to Hong Kong, Seoul, Singapore, and Guam was discontinued. Only Honolulu remained in the Pacific with nonstop service to Dallas/Fort Worth.

So service to Guam basically lasted a year and a half, from July 1979 until late 1980.


User currently offlineBI601BN From United States of America, joined Mar 2008, 14 posts, RR: 0
Reply 17, posted (5 years 11 months 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 4761 times:

[QUOTE]During the period that Braniff operated a single 747 on the DFW-HNL route, what did they do when the 'Great Pumbkin' was in for major overhauls? Did their South America DC-8s have the range to substitute on the Hawaii run? [QUOTE]

Braniff performed progressive maintenance on N601BN during its time on the ground in Dallas. When the aircraft had to be taken off the line for either unscheduled work or more intensive maintenance, 707's (used primarily for MAC flights to southeast Asia) were subbed in originally. Later DC-8's were used and still later there was enough of a 747 fleet to that Braniff could simply substitute a different 747 in for the flight.

N601BN's utilization rate was an impressive 15.5 hours per day and the only way that pace could be maintained on the 747-100 was to schedule maintenance on the aircraft so that it "fit" into its time on the ground. It was Continental Airlines (who Harding Lawrence worked for at the time) who first implemented this kind of revolutionary maintenance to keep their original and very small 707 fleet flying at an amazing 16 hours per day. Continental got nearly twice the utilization from their 707 fleet compared to their direct competitors. Later, Braniff did much the same with N601BN.

BI601BN
http://flyingcolors.onewavemedia.com/blog/


User currently offlineJfk777 From United States of America, joined Aug 2006, 8341 posts, RR: 7
Reply 18, posted (5 years 11 months 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 4664 times:
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Braniff in later years had several 747-200B and 747SP. The Late Harding Lawrence and his wife Mary Wells Lawrence, she was in advertisng making the famous Braniff line, "the end of the plain Plane". Harding wanted to empire build with Branif's Pacific system, expand DFW to Europe and for a brief year or two Braniff had Boston to Europe, not London services. I even remember in an Annual report Braniff getting the 747SP's for DFW to Bahrain nonstop services. A man before his time, but Texans always thought big.

User currently offlineViscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 25170 posts, RR: 22
Reply 19, posted (5 years 11 months 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 4535 times:



Quoting BI601BN (Reply 17):
707's (used primarily for MAC flights to southeast Asia) were subbed in originally. Later DC-8's were used and still later there was enough of a 747 fleet to that Braniff could simply substitute a different 747 in for the flight.

Another carrier with a colorful livery, CP Air, leased a 747-200 to BN for about a month in November/December 1978. I assume that was maintenance-related.. While with BN I think it was re-registered N620BN. That was during the brief period when BN operated SEA-HNL and if memory correct the leased CP 747 was primarily used on that route. It was the aircraft below.


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User currently offlineBI601BN From United States of America, joined Mar 2008, 14 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (5 years 11 months 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 4344 times:



Quote:
Another carrier with a colorful livery, CP Air, leased a 747-200 to BN for about a month in November/December 1978. I assume that was maintenance-related.. While with BN I think it was re-registered N620BN. That was during the brief period when BN operated SEA-HNL and if memory correct the leased CP 747 was primarily used on that route. It was the aircraft below.

You are correct both about the lease and registration number. Given the short duration of the lease, I'm sure you are equally correct about its purpose (to replace a 747 undergoing maintenance.)

Braniff also leased a couple of American Airlines 747-100's for a time (longer duration) and even a Wardair 747-200. Interestingly enough, Braniff originally ordered (2) 747-100 aircraft. The first was registered as N601BN and the second (slated to be painted green) was to be registered N602BN. Deciding that one 747 was enough, the plane was sold to Wardair.

The registration, N602BN, was finally used on a much later purchase, a 747-200 I think.

BI601BN
http://flyingcolors.onewavemedia.com/blog/


User currently offlineJetJeanes From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 1431 posts, RR: 1
Reply 21, posted (5 years 11 months 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 4173 times:

Bn did substitute with the dc-8 i know, i am not aware of the 707 substitutes. but also
if im not mistaken did Bn not have an Sp for a while



i can see for 80 miles
User currently offlineViscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 25170 posts, RR: 22
Reply 22, posted (5 years 11 months 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 3984 times:



Quoting JetJeanes (Reply 21):
but also
if im not mistaken did BN not have an SP for a while

BN had 3 747SPs. They had ordered 4 but the 4th wasn't taken up and was delivered to Air China. BN's 3 SP's below.


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