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B737 Families: How Many?  
User currently offlineSankaps From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 2255 posts, RR: 2
Posted (5 years 7 months 2 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 2153 times:

In terms of "aircraft families", how many families is the 737 considered to have?

Is it just two families, "Classic" and "NG", or are there more? Are the -300 and -400 considered "Classic", and does NG start with the -500?

By families, I would use cockpit crew common-rating as the primary criteria (so for instance would consider the A318 thru A321 to be one family).

19 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineJrfspa320 From Australia, joined Sep 2005, 253 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (5 years 7 months 2 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 2134 times:

Id say 3 families
the 100/200
the classics (300/400/500)
and NGs (600/700/800/900_


User currently offlineEI320 From Ireland, joined Dec 2007, 1447 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (5 years 7 months 2 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 2132 times:



Quoting Sankaps (Thread starter):
Is it just two families, "Classic" and "NG", or are there more? Are the -300 and -400 considered "Classic", and does NG start with the -500?

The original 737's were the -100 and -200 series. Then the "Classic" variants are the -300, -400 and -500. Then finally the NG's are the 600/700/800/900 models.

The NG retained commonality from previous models, but the wings were modified, fuel capacity was increased and more fuel efficient engines were used.


User currently offlineEMBQA From United States of America, joined Oct 2003, 9364 posts, RR: 11
Reply 3, posted (5 years 7 months 2 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 2119 times:

I guess it depends on how you break it down...

Powerplant:

JT-8 powered......... 737-100/200
CFM-56 powered... 737-300/400/500/600/700/800/900

Technology:

1st Gen...737-100/200
2nd Gen..737-300/400/500
NG.........737/600/700/800/900

[Edited 2009-04-13 11:49:27]


"It's not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog"
User currently offlineSankaps From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 2255 posts, RR: 2
Reply 4, posted (5 years 7 months 2 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 2110 times:



Quoting EI320 (Reply 2):
The NG retained commonality from previous models, but the wings were modified, fuel capacity was increased and more fuel efficient engines were used.

Thanks. So in terms of crew and parts commonality, can the "classics" and "NG" be considered one family, like the A318...321 and the 757/767?


User currently offlineSolnabo From Sweden, joined Jan 2008, 857 posts, RR: 2
Reply 5, posted (5 years 7 months 2 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 2106 times:

.

A sidenote quiz:

How is B737-900ER orders doing, is it a hotcake?

Cheers

//Mike  wave 



Airbus SAS - Love them both
User currently offlineEI320 From Ireland, joined Dec 2007, 1447 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (5 years 7 months 2 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 2062 times:



Quoting Sankaps (Reply 4):
So in terms of crew and parts commonality, can the "classics" and "NG" be considered one family, like the A318...321 and the 757/767?

The NG retained crew commonality from the previous models. Apart from the glass cockpit, winglets and the ones above, I can't think of any other major differences between them!


User currently offlineEghansen From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 7, posted (5 years 7 months 2 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 2062 times:



Quoting Sankaps (Reply 4):
So in terms of crew and parts commonality, can the "classics" and "NG" be considered one family, like the A318...321 and the 757/767?

Someone else can correct me if I am wrong, but I believe that Southwest considers all its 737s both classic and NG to be one aircraft type.


User currently offlineJrfspa320 From Australia, joined Sep 2005, 253 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (5 years 7 months 2 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 2039 times:



Quoting EI320 (Reply 6):

Quoting Sankaps (Reply 4):
So in terms of crew and parts commonality, can the "classics" and "NG" be considered one family, like the A318...321 and the 757/767?

The NG retained crew commonality from the previous models. Apart from the glass cockpit, winglets and the ones above, I can't think of any other major differences between them!

The classics and NG, are not the same family.
The NGs and classics are very different.


User currently offlineEghansen From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 9, posted (5 years 7 months 2 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 2012 times:



Quoting Jrfspa320 (Reply 8):
The classics and NG, are not the same family.
The NGs and classics are very different.

The classics are no more different from the NG than the 767-400 is from the 767-200, the 777-300ER is from the 777-200 or the 747-400 is from the 747-200.

Quote from the Boeing website:

"The newest members of the Boeing 737 family - - the 737-600/-700/-800/-900 models -- continue the 737's pre-eminence as the world's most popular and reliable commercial jet transport."

Boeing considers any aircraft with the same first three numbers (737, 747, 757, 767, 777, 787) to all be one "family". The -300, -400, -500, -600, -700 etc is considered to be the "series".

Incidentally, the fuselage on the 737-500 and 737-600 is identical.


User currently offlineRoseFlyer From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 9690 posts, RR: 52
Reply 10, posted (5 years 7 months 2 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 2003 times:



Quoting Solnabo (Reply 5):

How is B737-900ER orders doing, is it a hotcake?

About 15% of the backlog. The 800 dominates and the 700 and 900ER have modest numbers being. Most 900ERs are going to Continental and Lion Air.

Quoting EI320 (Reply 6):
The NG retained crew commonality from the previous models. Apart from the glass cockpit, winglets and the ones above, I can't think of any other major differences between them!

Don't forget a new wing! It has new engines, new fuselage diameter and strength, and heavily revised systems including: landing gear, electrical, flight deck, hydraulics, flight controls, pneumatics, etc. It got a revised interior as well incorporating many 777 elements. It carries the 737 name and looks about the same, but the guts of the plane drastically changed.



If you have never designed an airplane part before, let the real designers do the work!
User currently offlineRampart From United States of America, joined Aug 2005, 3152 posts, RR: 6
Reply 11, posted (5 years 7 months 2 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 1979 times:

I've never thought of the 737s (or any other Boeing model) as divided into "families". Rather, it's an evolution that grows in spurts. One can be from a different generation yet still the same family, and they can still be quite different based on the generation. So, in the case of the 737, I always figured 3 generations. 747 has 3 generations. 767 3 generations. I don't know what to think about Airbuses, they seem not to come out with batches of generations.

Quoting RoseFlyer (Reply 10):
new fuselage diameter

I've been curious about that. External or internal diameter? Is the cabin actually wider, and by how much?


-Rampart


User currently offlineEghansen From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (5 years 7 months 2 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 1967 times:



Quoting RoseFlyer (Reply 10):
Don't forget a new wing! It has new engines, new fuselage diameter and strength, and heavily revised systems including: landing gear, electrical, flight deck, hydraulics, flight controls, pneumatics, etc.

Uprating from the CFM56-3 to the CFM56-7 is not usually considered a new engine. Also, the fuselage diameter did not change. It is the same for the 707, 727, 737 and 757 families. The fuselage on the 737-500 and 737-600 are identical.

The 707, 747, 767, 777 and 787 families of aircraft all have more than one wing size and design. Boeing still considers them to be of the same family.


User currently offlineRoseFlyer From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 9690 posts, RR: 52
Reply 13, posted (5 years 7 months 2 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 1873 times:



Quoting Eghansen (Reply 12):
Also, the fuselage diameter did not change. It is the same for the 707, 727, 737 and 757 families. The fuselage on the 737-500 and 737-600 are identical.

Yes it did change. The fuselage thickness increased as it was strengthened so that the plane can fly at 41,000ft instead of 37,000ft which is the max altitude that the classic is certified for. Cabin width didn't change, but the wall thickness of the aluminum skin increased along with quite a bit of surrounding structure. A passenger though would never know the difference. My apology if the word diameter threw you off.

Quoting Eghansen (Reply 12):
The 707, 747, 767, 777 and 787 families of aircraft all have more than one wing size and design.

The 737NG was certified as a new wing. None of the other models went through the process of certifying new wings AFAIK. The 747-8 has relofted its wing, but it is still certified as it was on the 747-400 with the FAA. Boeing created an entirely new wing with different dimensions and planform for the NG.



If you have never designed an airplane part before, let the real designers do the work!
User currently offlineTdscanuck From Canada, joined Jan 2006, 12709 posts, RR: 80
Reply 14, posted (5 years 7 months 2 weeks 4 hours ago) and read 1786 times:



Quoting Sankaps (Thread starter):
In terms of "aircraft families", how many families is the 737 considered to have?

It strongly depends on how you define "family" but, in normal usage, there are three 737 families:
737-100/200: "737 Jurassics" (not a commonly heard phrase)
737-300/400/500: "737 Classics" (used commonly)
737-600/700/800/900: 737NG (used commonly)

Quoting Sankaps (Thread starter):
By families, I would use cockpit crew common-rating as the primary criteria (so for instance would consider the A318 thru A321 to be one family).

By that definition, they're one family.

Quoting EI320 (Reply 6):
The NG retained crew commonality from the previous models. Apart from the glass cockpit, winglets and the ones above, I can't think of any other major differences between them!

Almost everything is different at the part level. The only things that stayed the same were the fuselage outer mold lines, the crew type rating, and some of the systems architectures (but not the parts or suppliers).

Quoting Eghansen (Reply 9):
The classics are no more different from the NG than the 767-400 is from the 767-200, the 777-300ER is from the 777-200 or the 747-400 is from the 747-200.

The classics are *far* more different from the NG than the 777-200 is from the -300ER. 747-200 to -400 is a much more apt comparisson.

Quoting Eghansen (Reply 9):
Incidentally, the fuselage on the 737-500 and 737-600 is identical.

The mold lines are identical. The parts and alloys are considerably different.

Tom.


User currently offlineSankaps From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 2255 posts, RR: 2
Reply 15, posted (5 years 7 months 2 weeks 4 hours ago) and read 1760 times:



Quoting Tdscanuck (Reply 14):


Quoting Sankaps (Thread starter):
In terms of "aircraft families", how many families is the 737 considered to have?

It strongly depends on how you define "family" but, in normal usage, there are three 737 families:
737-100/200: "737 Jurassics" (not a commonly heard phrase)
737-300/400/500: "737 Classics" (used commonly)
737-600/700/800/900: 737NG (used commonly)

Quoting Sankaps (Thread starter):
By families, I would use cockpit crew common-rating as the primary criteria (so for instance would consider the A318 thru A321 to be one family).

By that definition, they're one family.

So that means the -300 thru -500 have the same cockpit as the NGs? Can pilots move amongtst them with no additional or type-change training? I guess Southwest pilot staffing would be a good case study for this.


User currently offlinePar13del From Bahamas, joined Dec 2005, 7469 posts, RR: 8
Reply 16, posted (5 years 7 months 2 weeks 4 hours ago) and read 1741 times:



Quoting Sankaps (Thread starter):
By families, I would use cockpit crew common-rating as the primary criteria (so for instance would consider the A318 thru A321 to be one family).

By your definition one family one type rating.


User currently offlineTdscanuck From Canada, joined Jan 2006, 12709 posts, RR: 80
Reply 17, posted (5 years 7 months 2 weeks 4 hours ago) and read 1736 times:



Quoting Sankaps (Reply 15):
So that means the -300 thru -500 have the same cockpit as the NGs?

Sort of...the actual parts, in most cases, are different. But the interface is the same so, from the flight crews' point of view, their interaction with the aircraft is the same. There's quite a lot of hardware behind the scenes on the 737NG that's working to keep the interface the same even though the "back end" equipment is completely different.

For example, the 737-300/400/500 uses round-dial instruments ("steam gauges"). The 737NG uses flat panel displays...but it shows pictures that look just like the round instruments, in the same locations. If you're an operator who doesn't care about 737-Classic/737NG commonality, you can switch the displays to show a modern PFD/ND format that's very similar to what the 777 has.

Where the 737-Classic has warning lights, the 737NG just shows a digital picture of the warning lights on the flat panel displays, in the same physical location. Etc.

Quoting Sankaps (Reply 15):
Can pilots move amongtst them with no additional or type-change training? I guess Southwest pilot staffing would be a good case study for this.

I'm not positive that it's *no* additional training (there are options within types that might require extra training, for example) but, assuming they're set up for the right display format on the 737NG's, there's no type-change training.

Tom.


User currently offlineHAWK21M From India, joined Jan 2001, 31702 posts, RR: 56
Reply 18, posted (5 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 1644 times:

The NGs have a different wing root to fuselage shape.Apart from Pitot tubes replacing the earlier pitot static tubes.Also add a higher mounted Landing gear.
regds
MEL...



Think of the brighter side!
User currently offlineSuprazachair From Northern Mariana Islands, joined Feb 2004, 634 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (5 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 8 hours ago) and read 1512 times:



Quoting Sankaps (Reply 15):
Can pilots move amongtst them with no additional or type-change training? I guess Southwest pilot staffing would be a good case study for this.

Pilots at both WN and AS fly classics and NG's with one type rating. I believe how the displays on the NG are configured plays a role in allowing this (as well as differences training).


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