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NW DC-9s Oldest Plane Still In Pax Service?  
User currently offlineC5LOAD From United States of America, joined Sep 2008, 917 posts, RR: 0
Posted (5 years 3 weeks 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 18218 times:

I was seeing all these retirements of the A300s and just got to wondering if NW/DL's DC-9-30s are the oldest airplanes still operating pax service with a major airline? Also, if there is another way to word the title, please tell me.


"But this airplane has 4 engines, it's an entirely different kind of flying! Altogether"
92 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineHermansCVR580 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 509 posts, RR: 1
Reply 1, posted (5 years 3 weeks 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 18149 times:

Well I don't know if they are the oldest, I do know they do/did have the oldest DC-9 in passenger service. Now if I may throw a turd into the punch bowl with out turning this into a when will Delta retire the DC-9, I saw on Pilotfourms.com that there is word that there is suppose to be an announcment in early August and on possible rumor is that the DC-9-51's will receive some sort of flight deck upgrades, what that means I don't know but it would be neat to see some of thoes steam guages replaced.

Moderators this is not a DC-9 replacement topic.



The right decision at the wrong time, is still a wrong decision. "Hal Carr"
User currently offlineFlighty From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 8475 posts, RR: 2
Reply 2, posted (5 years 3 weeks 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 18070 times:

Yes the NW DC-9-30 is definitely the oldest aircraft in active service at a respectable scheduled airline. It is very hard to find anything built < 1980 flying today in mainline airline service, unless you are in Africa or remote Middle East / Asia (to exclude the highly advanced carriers that also operate in those regions).

In Europe or the USA, I do believe the NW DC-9 fleet is by far the oldest scheduled mainline fleet operating.


User currently offlineDeltaMD90 From United States of America, joined Apr 2008, 7877 posts, RR: 52
Reply 3, posted (5 years 3 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 17965 times:

I don't get some people's hatred for these aircraft. I went out of my way to fly a NW/DL DC-9-30 and quite enjoyed it. It was quieter in my opinion than the A320 i flew the next legs.

NW's DC-9s range anywhere from the 1970s to, I think mine was made in 1988, quite new for a DC-9-30 don't you think?



Ironically I have never flown a Delta MD-90 :)
User currently offlineUnited_fan From United States of America, joined Nov 2000, 7483 posts, RR: 7
Reply 4, posted (5 years 3 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 17968 times:



Quoting DeltaMD90 (Reply 3):
NW's DC-9s range anywhere from the 1970s to, I think mine was made in 1988, quite new for a DC-9-30 don't you think?



I've seen some from 67 and 68 here in ROC.



'Empathy was yesterday...Today, you're wasting my Mother-F'ing time' - Heat.
User currently offline71Zulu From United States of America, joined Aug 2006, 3073 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (5 years 3 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 17948 times:

This is NW's oldest aircraft, N8920E

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Photo © Andy Egloff


originally delivered to Eastern Air Lines in March of 1967.

 airplane 



The good old days: Delta L-1011s at MSY
User currently offlineC5LOAD From United States of America, joined Sep 2008, 917 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (5 years 3 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 17914 times:



Quoting DeltaMD90 (Reply 3):
I think mine was made in 1988, quite new for a DC-9-30 don't you think?

I think 1988 is a little too new. They were building the Mad dogs at that point. The -9-30s I think were stopped around late 70s and replaced with the -50s. But I have been wrong in the past.



"But this airplane has 4 engines, it's an entirely different kind of flying! Altogether"
User currently offlineYx302 From United States of America, joined Nov 2008, 115 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (5 years 3 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 17897 times:

YX actually operated the oldest dc-9 untill it was retired. Number 2 off the production line. I beleive the muesum in DC wanted it, but there was nothing in it for YX. So it was sold or destroyed.

User currently offlineDeltaMD90 From United States of America, joined Apr 2008, 7877 posts, RR: 52
Reply 8, posted (5 years 3 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 17880 times:

I was on N8933E I believe. What year was that? I have a source that says 1988 though I'm thinking it might be through a merger...

http://www.geocities.com/~aeromoe/fleets/nw.html



Ironically I have never flown a Delta MD-90 :)
User currently offline71Zulu From United States of America, joined Aug 2006, 3073 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (5 years 3 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 17870 times:

N8933E originally delivered to Eastern Air Lines in December of 1967.


The good old days: Delta L-1011s at MSY
User currently offlineC767P From United States of America, joined Oct 2008, 886 posts, RR: 2
Reply 10, posted (5 years 3 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 17844 times:



Quoting DeltaMD90 (Reply 3):
NW's DC-9s range anywhere from the 1970s to, I think mine was made in 1988, quite new for a DC-9-30 don't you think?

I believe the newest DC-9-30 currently flying for NW/DL was delivered 5/20/1975, N945N. The average age of the 29 aircraft is 40 years old.

They were manufactured from 1965 to 1982, the MD-80 line was open from 1979 to 1999.


User currently offlineCaptaink From Mexico, joined May 2001, 5109 posts, RR: 12
Reply 11, posted (5 years 3 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 17821 times:



Quoting C767P (Reply 10):
Quoting DeltaMD90 (Reply 3):
NW's DC-9s range anywhere from the 1970s to, I think mine was made in 1988, quite new for a DC-9-30 don't you think?

I believe the newest DC-9-30 currently flying for NW/DL was delivered 5/20/1975, N945N. The average age of the 29 aircraft is 40 years old.

They were manufactured from 1965 to 1982, the MD-80 line was open from 1979 to 1999

NW has really taken good care of these birds and even after so many years, they still have life left in them

Can the 50s be reengined along with this flight deck upgrade to make it more efficient. I suppose the niners arent that thirsty fuel either..



There is something special about planes....
User currently offlineHermansCVR580 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 509 posts, RR: 1
Reply 12, posted (5 years 3 weeks 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 17746 times:

I don't think that it would be cost effective put new engines on, It has been said by Mr. Anderson that they have some options on the tabel to replace the DC-9's that they are looking at now but according to him right now the DC-9's are a great plane to have in the fleet. I think that if they plan on keeping the DC-9-51's for say another 5 years then upgrading the flight deck they would be able to recoop the cost of the upgrades. Maybe even a simple electronic flight bag would be nice? I am excited to see what they announce in reguards to the DC-9. I know the 30's will be gone by the end of next year, so anything they end up doing will be on the DC-9-50's only.


The right decision at the wrong time, is still a wrong decision. "Hal Carr"
User currently offlineDL752 From United States of America, joined Jul 2008, 174 posts, RR: 1
Reply 13, posted (5 years 3 weeks 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 17661 times:

I always thought the DC-9 birds owned by NW were too old to fly, but now that I think about it, I would fly DL's 757's that are getting up there in age. I know not all of their 757's are older and some are quite young.

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Photo © Peachair


DL752  airplane 


User currently offlinePSU.DTW.SCE From United States of America, joined Jan 2002, 7555 posts, RR: 28
Reply 14, posted (5 years 3 weeks 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 17621 times:

The DC-9-30/40's are from about 1967-1977.
The DC-9-50's are newer, from the late 70's.

Keep in mind DL is repainting, adding new leather seat covers, and plans to add wifi to the DC-9-50's, which they plan to keep in the fleet for the next 3-5 years.


User currently offlineNWA320 From United States of America, joined Aug 2007, 70 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (5 years 3 weeks 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 17252 times:

Isn't US still flying some of those old ex EA 757's? Those must be getting up in age. Don't they still have those Eastern style brown PSU's?

User currently offlineC5LOAD From United States of America, joined Sep 2008, 917 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (5 years 3 weeks 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 17209 times:



Quoting DL752 (Reply 13):
I would fly DL's 757's that are getting up there in age.

IMO, a 757 will never look old. It doesn't smoke so there is no blackening behind the engines, and it will always have that "intimidating" look.



"But this airplane has 4 engines, it's an entirely different kind of flying! Altogether"
User currently offlineTrigged From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 539 posts, RR: 0
Reply 17, posted (5 years 3 weeks 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 17181 times:

I flew N759NW 13 Jun 08 and loved it. It was just as nice as some newer aircraft I have flown recently. That same trip I flew N906XJ which was delivered in 2007 and actually preferred the DC-9. I just like them because they are loud, old, and built like a tank. Reminds me of my ex-wife though.

User currently offlineHypercott From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 109 posts, RR: 0
Reply 18, posted (5 years 3 weeks 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 16872 times:

I hope they'll stay around for a while longer. The flight-deck upgrade sounds interesting, though it is always great to be catapulted back in time by the look of a NWA DC-9 cockpit... fantastic!

I love to fly them. Have been on a couple of -30s and -50s this year already.


User currently offlineMSPNWA From United States of America, joined Apr 2009, 1933 posts, RR: 2
Reply 19, posted (5 years 3 weeks 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 16536 times:

Not only does it appear that NW's DC-9s are the oldest PAX aircraft from a major worldwide carrier, it's hard to think of another example that's even close. I can't even think of an example in the 1970s off the top of my head.

Quoting C767P (Reply 10):
I believe the newest DC-9-30 currently flying for NW/DL was delivered 5/20/1975, N945N. The average age of the 29 aircraft is 40 years old.

Yep, flew on that baby two months ago for my first DC-9 ride. Wanted the oldest DC-9-30, but I got the newest instead. Oh well, it's still unique. The next newest is about two years older than 945N, and only a few are newer than 1969 overall.


User currently offlineAlphaomega From United States of America, joined Aug 2005, 571 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (5 years 3 weeks 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 16293 times:

Everyone talks about the NW DC-9s being old and either avoiding them or saying they need to be retired, but for what reason? They haven't had any safety issues and with the new cabins DL is installing, I'd rather fly in a DC-9 than an A320. Douglas built the DC-9 like a tank!

Interestingly, the first DC-9 entered service with DL, and now it seems the last one will end service with DL...


User currently offlineDeltaMD90 From United States of America, joined Apr 2008, 7877 posts, RR: 52
Reply 21, posted (5 years 3 weeks 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 16110 times:



Quoting Alphaomega (Reply 21):
I'd rather fly in a DC-9 than an A320.

 checkmark  Like I said, I think they are actually more quiet than A320s, sure they may be a little ratty but once DL puts in a new interior, they will be good as any other plane as far as being in the cabin. To normal pax it's just another [safe] plane and to a.netters its a flying piece of history!



Ironically I have never flown a Delta MD-90 :)
User currently offlineUSAirways787 From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 290 posts, RR: 1
Reply 22, posted (5 years 3 weeks 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 15753 times:

I miss the 90's era where 732's, 727's, MD-80's DC-8's, and DC'9's were all very common. When I was growing up "early 90's" I would always love sitting under the runway in KCLT, and watching them all scream over the runway. I remember when my dad worked for US Airways when they just had just changed their name he brought me a pamphlet of the new fleet and paint scheme they were changing to had the narrow and widebody Airbus fleet. I thought it was cool at the time, but to be honest now a days it just seems ordinary flying on just 737's and A319/320's. I will gladly take a DC-9 or anything pre 1990's any day. Just takes me back as growing up. That's when flying was fun, now it's just starting to become a hassle. I don't know if it's just me but I have always felt safer on an older plane such as the DC/MD, they have the best safety and reliability rating. People you sit next to jaw will literally drop when you tell them how old the plane is, if you are on a pre 90's plane. Then you get an unsettled look that I always find amusing. I hope the DC-9 stays around awhile longer. At this rate it will outlast it's sister MD!  Big grin


USAirways787



"Pre departure walk around complete, all doors closed, ready for pushback"
User currently offlineALBNWA4 From United States of America, joined Jul 2009, 29 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (5 years 3 weeks 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 15386 times:

These birds have certianly paid for themselves many times over.

Quoting 71Zulu (Reply 5):
This is NW's oldest aircraft, N8920E

Used to come into ALB every so often when I was working there. I always made sure to take a look at the slightly discolored, "antique" registration plate. Fascinating to think how many folks have actually been on that plane before.


User currently offlineBeeweel15 From United States of America, joined Nov 2003, 1751 posts, RR: 0
Reply 24, posted (5 years 3 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 15035 times:

The DC9 is a rugged aircraft and with proper maintenance they can keep going and going and going. While I like Airbus their planes are very very delicate the slightest touch they get there is a problem.

25 B727LVR : I know they are just a chater airline, but USA Jet operates a DC9-15 that was delievered in 1966 to KLM. Ship N191US.
26 Cchan : Depends on where you sit. At the front yes, the last few rows, no.
27 Denver11 : I'm flying on a DC 9-50 this coming Friday GRR-MSP. I choose the flight because it was a DC-9 flight. Love those old planes.
28 PSU.DTW.SCE : Keep in mind that the DC-9 interiors were completely redone in the late '90's. This included new everything; sidewalls, overhead bins, seats, lavs, a
29 Post contains images ZANL188 : Dang! Seems like just yesterday that Sherm Booen was talking up the delivery of North Centrals DC-9 "FanJets" ... and they were a blast to fly on then
30 Cschleic : Think about it like this.... It's difficult, if not impossible, to get a ride on a 707, DC-8, L-1011, DC-10 or 727 these days. But there still are a b
31 HermansCVR580 : I had the pleasure this March to fly on N777NC, at the time I did not know it was the last North Central DC-9 delivered to North Central, but in Repub
32 ZANL188 : I know there were videos produced... but I cannot locate... WCCO Radio brought the show back as an hour long talk program as recently as last fall. I
33 FiestaFlight : Maybe somebody can clarify, but I remember something unique about DC-9 flights (on several NWA, at least.) When taxiing out from the gate, I always re
34 Post contains links ZANL188 : Well, i found the podcast of the radio show.. http://www.generalaviationnews.com/?p=10359 And it's sponsored by my old FBO! Thunderbird Aviation....
35 Alphaomega : Probably just for fun or to get some air through the flight deck, but it wasn't a "procedure". They still might leave the windows open but post-9/11,
36 C5LOAD : Every time I am at DTW, I always park myself on the SW side (the one with the -9s), and watching them push off the gate. It cracks me up how they stil
37 DiscoverCSG : Does anybody else think this is funny?: For all these years, we've had perennial a.net threads about "When will NW retire the DC9s?" NW, as it turns o
38 AndyGarrett : Can someone who works at Delta take the person responsible for selecting NW planes to paint out in the parking lot for a little "chat" to have this pa
39 C5LOAD : AFAIK, both models have been painted in the new livery.
40 DeltaRules : I'd love to see the DC-9s get another new lease on life. It's been fun to see the classic -9s still flying after all these years. Here's what I'd like
41 C5LOAD : So, If one wanted to pull one out of the boneyard and restore it to flying status, what do you think that cost would run. I would assume most of the r
42 Av8rDAL : Wished they still came to ATL. Last flight on one was ATL-DTW back in January of '08. Oh my...
43 Lexy : My first ever flight on a DC-9 is coming up on Labor Day this year!!! My wife and I are flying to ORD from our home in BNA and we are going through DT
44 CodyKDiamond : Those NW DC-9s are great! I had the pleasure of flying the oldest one in the fleet, N8921E earlier this year. I consider 921E (LN 96) the oldest as it
45 YULWinterSkies : Agreed. I'd bet my money (if i could afford it ) that one day, the oldest aircraft in pax service at a major airline will be a 757. I'd bet my money
46 RJ111 : Haha, great point!
47 Duckredbeard : I think I once read that when the last A340 retires, the crew will deadhead back on a DC-9! I stuck my head in one of Northwest's DC-9s about 2 years
48 C5LOAD : They have the CRT screens for the ACARS.
49 C767P : Most of the DC-9-51s have been painted in Delta colors, 26 of 34 are now complete. None of the DC-9-30s or -40s have been painted, and I don’t thin
50 Argonaut : Guilty as charged. August 1983, MIA-RDU, when it was still with Eastern. I'd bet '920E was completed sooner, and thus is chronologically older. OTH,
51 AirbusA6 : The NW/DL DC9s are an anomaly to be fair, no other major airline flies DC9s, indeed outside of the US, MD80s are rapidly diminishing. There can't be m
52 HermansCVR580 : Yup only the 50 series will be repainted into Delta colors, all the 30's and 40's will be gone by the end of 2010 that was according to Richard Anders
53 Post contains links and images ZANL188 : Yes sir, complete with dirty tail cones even!! View Large View MediumPhoto © Dan Vincent - New England Airports
54 Post contains links and images CFMitch56 : Argonaut, I second your inquiry. The NW DC-10's had upwards of 100k hours and many thousands of cycles when they retired. I'm sure the 9's are lower
55 ZANL188 : More like 130K hours IIRC
56 Post contains links ZANL188 : Sometimes you can the cycles and hours from the FAAs service difficulty report database. http://av-info.faa.gov/sdrx/
57 KingFriday013 : FWIW, my friend and I were driving by DTW today, and there was a pretty clean-looking DC-9 in Delta colors. I'm guessing it's a new paint. Since we we
58 Post contains links and images Viscount724 : The last DC-9s built were actually -30s, not -50s. The last -50 was delivered to AY in April 1981. I think the DC-9-31 below was the last DC-9 delive
59 Spacecadet : I wouldn't avoid flying one, but I don't disagree with those that would say they are not as safe as more modern aircraft. a) there have been many adv
60 Post contains links and images CFMitch56 : Good find! Here are a few recent figures for NW DC-9-30's: View Large View MediumPhoto © Bobby DeBarge N8933E -- highest hours/cycles I was able
61 HermansCVR580 : I was always a DC-9 fan ever since I was young. I think the only plane I like better to fly on was the 727 and 757. Now in 20 years will I be trying t
62 HermansCVR580 : Hey thank you CFMitch56 loved the powerback!!!!! When Delta retires the DC-9 I say they take abunch of them and have them all do powerbacks, it would
63 Nwarooster : DC-9-31, registered now as N994Z, ship 9981, which is now retired originally flew for Northeast Airlines as N979NE. It then flew for Delta after Nort
64 Viscount724 : That's the one that was rebuilt from the wrecks of two others. While with Ozark it hit a snowplow landing at Sioux Falls, SD, killing the snowplow dr
65 Tan Flyr : As I recall, a few years back when NW was starting the upgrade they had a section in their Annual Report about the skilled craftsmen that were doing
66 Dtw9 : None of Delta's old DC-9's made it past Dec 2008 in the NWA fleet. N3322L and N3324L were the last to operate for NWA and they were placed in storage
67 PSU.DTW.SCE : NW's 753's are also some of the newest 757's out there.
68 Quickmover : How is it that they made MD 80s before the dc-9 line was stopped? I thought the MD80 series replaced the dc-9.
69 Dtw9 : Because DC-9's were offered at the same time sales began for the MD-80 line. As with all aircraft programs, there's always those final "top up" order
70 Quickmover : Thanks A little off subject, but was there really much of a difference between a dc9-50 and the first md80s?
71 Post contains links and images DL752 : I agree. View Large View MediumPhoto © Bartosz Dragan Nothing could make this aircraft look bad! DL752
72 Lightsaber : In a word, wow. Cycles? Yea, but if you maintained an old Cadillac like an aircraft, they would last forever! Noise regulations. The older JT8D's wer
73 Post contains links and images DocLightning : Indeed. The old: View Large View MediumPhoto © Lari-Pekka Kero And a 717-200 vs a NW DC-9. Identical to the casual observer.
74 Post contains images Zippyjet : A lot of pilots swear by the DC-9 family of aircraft. From the early swinging 60's nines of Eastern up and including the 717's! There must be somethin
75 M404 : I've got to chime in for my favorite plane. This was the first jet I was actually paid to work in 1968 (not paid to work was 1967). Consider this, I'v
76 AirbusA6 : If that's the case, how do the DC9's JT8D's pass emissions and noise regs in the US? If unducted fans ever enter service, then rear engined planes co
77 Zippyjet : Did those DC birds include any classic DC 8's with the curtains and Palomar seats?
78 Spacecadet : I still think the DC-9 looks like a banana, whether it's painted yellow or not. Though I have to say there was a lot of excitement back when the DC-9
79 Cchan : They haven't disappeared, they just relocated to Africa. 1Time airline and Safair in South Africa have a large collection of MD80 acquired from vario
80 TrnsWrld : During the good times what were the largest operators of the DC-9? Im guessing Eastern, TWA, and Northwest? Am I missin any?
81 Post contains links and images TrnsWrld : Also, forgot to mention I have a large (and heavy) piece of DC-9 memorabilia. I own an entire and almost complete wingtip from a NW DC-9 line number 1
82 September11 : US Air! They had tons of DC9s. Next, ValuJet, that is.[Edited 2009-08-04 11:19:23]
83 Zippyjet : And, don't forget DL! DL was one of the launch customers of the DC 9. As a matter of fact, the widget didn't go Boeing until after the absorbsion of N
84 Viscount724 : The EU rules on hush-kitted aircraft are stricter than in the U.S but I forget the details. If memory correct, aircraft that were only able to meet S
85 Viscount724 : No, DC-9s and MD-80s were built simultaneously for a while until the last DC-9 orders were completed. The first MD-80 was delivered to Swissair on Se
86 Spacecadet : MD-80's *are* DC-9's, at least the first couple revisions. They were DC-9-81's and 82's. Just a stretch DC-9, no different than a 777-300 vs. a 777-2
87 Lightsaber : Nitpick, they could only be hushkitted *above* a certain bypass ratio. The rules go 'above and beyond' the ICAO rules which almost started a trade wa
88 Viscount724 : Thanks. I was aware of that, but since we were referring to the "traditional" DC-9s (10 through 50), I didn't think it was worth complicating the dis
89 Post contains links and images DLX737200 : I flew on my first DC-9-30 yesterday, N9338. She was built in 1969! View Large View MediumPhoto © Ben Wang The entire flight from MSP-OMA, I foun
90 Isitsafenow : Hats off and a big salute to you! That is the best line I have read on A-Net or perhaps in any aviation publication...and I read a lot of em since th
91 Nwarooster : You have hit the nail on the head!!!!!!!
92 DiscoverCSG : Aw, thanks. Actually, I'm not sure it's at all an original thought, but I'll take a compliment any day of the week.
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