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Usage Of The Terms "upgauge / Downgauge"  
User currently offlineKleinsim From Qatar, joined Jan 2007, 154 posts, RR: 0
Posted (5 years 1 month 4 days ago) and read 12343 times:

Hi everyone,

I was just completely baffled because some of the people I just talked to had never heard of the words "upgauge" and "downgauge" when referring to using a larger ro smaller capacity aircraft on a route - All are very knowledeable about airlines and aircraft and it just baffled me that they use "upgrade" and "downgrade" asI have never heard these words used in that context (only in terms of quality, not size). All of my buddies are largely European whereas I am the only American. Maybe that's where the problem is.

Did any people experience similar language differences when it comes to those terms?

Just curious...

Kleinsim

12 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15744 posts, RR: 27
Reply 1, posted (5 years 1 month 4 days ago) and read 12335 times:

Sometimes "upgrade" and "downgrade" are used. But as far as I know the proper terms are "upguage" and "downguage." Sometimes and "upgrade" and an "upguage" are not the same thing. For example, United Airlines' 777s are generally considered to be better than their 747s. Therefore, a flight going from a 747 to a 777 is an upgrade, but a downguage.

Also, a through flight that does change planes is known as a "change of guage" flight. An example of this would be UA 917 that operates FRA-IAD-SEA, but the FRA-IAD segment is a 777 and the IAD-SEA segment is a 757-200.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlineTango-Bravo From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 3805 posts, RR: 29
Reply 2, posted (5 years 1 month 4 days ago) and read 12309 times:



Quoting BMI727 (Reply 1):
Also, a through flight that does change planes is known as a "change of guage" flight.

"Gauge" as used in this context is a term that is probably borrowed from railroad terminology.... as in changing from wider gauge tracks to narrower gauge tracks or vice versa ... or, with airlines, transferring/changing from a larger aircraft to a smaller aircraft, or vice versa.

As for use of the terms "upgrade" and "downgrade" in the airline industry, I too agree that these are poor choices of terms when used to describe quantity ....as in capacity of aircraft assigbed to a route.... these terms are better used in reference to quality.


User currently offlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15744 posts, RR: 27
Reply 3, posted (5 years 1 month 4 days ago) and read 12288 times:



Quoting Tango-Bravo (Reply 2):
"Gauge" as used in this context is a term that is probably borrowed from railroad terminology....

You are probably right about that. Many things in aviation are borrowed from railroads. The numbering of flights, and the tradition of having flight 1 be the most prestigious flight came from railroads. And up until the 1960s or so some flights were given names, much like certain trains were. The use of city codes also started with railroads I think.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlineKleinsim From Qatar, joined Jan 2007, 154 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (5 years 1 month 4 days ago) and read 12283 times:



Quoting BMI727 (Reply 3):
The use of city codes also started with railroads I think.

Interesting, I didn't know that. Though I know that many of the city codes (LAX and PDX) come to mind were created by appending an X to the local weather (?!) station abbreviation.


User currently offlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15744 posts, RR: 27
Reply 5, posted (5 years 1 month 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 12275 times:



Quoting Kleinsim (Reply 4):
Though I know that many of the city codes (LAX and PDX) come to mind were created by appending an X to the local weather (?!) station abbreviation.

It could have been the weather stations, but I thought that railroads also used two letter codes. I know that the N prefix for registrations came from early radio sets, most of which were operated by the Navy and so used N.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlineKleinsim From Qatar, joined Jan 2007, 154 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (5 years 1 month 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 12260 times:



Quoting BMI727 (Reply 5):
I know that the N prefix for registrations came from early radio sets, most of which were operated by the Navy and so used N.

Oh is that where they are from? Hmm... Didn't "Which letter does the registrations of all civil aircraft in the US start with?" make it all the way to Who Wants to Be A Millionaire? IIRC it was the 1kk question?!


User currently offlineTango-Bravo From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 3805 posts, RR: 29
Reply 7, posted (5 years 1 month 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 12191 times:



Quoting BMI727 (Reply 3):
Many things in aviation are borrowed from railroads.

...another of which is the high level of service offered by airlines in the past... to all pax in all cabins and classes of service. Since the airlines of the 1930s to 1950s were competing for the railroads' more affluent pax, a service as comparable to First Class on the railroads as possible was crucial to the airlines' success in luring pax to make the switch from the rails to the air.

In the pistonliner era of the airlines, sleeper berths were available on many longer flights -- no doubt to compete with the Pullman (sleeper car) service of the railroads.

The same competition for pax also took place on trans-Atlantic and trans-Pacific routes ...except the competition was between airlines and passenger ships.


User currently offlineGolfBravoRomeo From United States of America, joined Aug 2007, 137 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (5 years 1 month 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 12169 times:



Quoting BMI727 (Reply 3):
Many things in aviation are borrowed from railroads.

And from ocean liners, captain (and the uniform), purser, steward for example.


User currently offlineTdscanuck From Canada, joined Jan 2006, 12709 posts, RR: 79
Reply 9, posted (5 years 1 month 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 12058 times:



Quoting Tango-Bravo (Reply 2):
"Gauge" as used in this context is a term that is probably borrowed from railroad terminology.... as in changing from wider gauge tracks to narrower gauge tracks or vice versa

"Gauge" has another meaning in aviation that might also be responsible for the terms "upgauge" and "downgauge." The gauge of sheet metal is the thickness. A higher gauge is the next thicker standard sheet. To "upgauge" a part would be to make it larger/thicker/stronger.

Tom.


User currently offlineTWA757 From United States of America, joined Jul 2007, 179 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (5 years 1 month 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 12012 times:

I don't believe "upgauge" and "downgauge" are actually in the dictionary; I believe they've developed as colloquialisms in the U.S. That might be why your friends didn't recognize them.

User currently offlineKleinsim From Qatar, joined Jan 2007, 154 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (5 years 1 month 3 days 7 hours ago) and read 11997 times:

MS Word certainly doesn't have it in the dictionary.  Smile

User currently offlineVS11 From United States of America, joined Jul 2001, 1111 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (5 years 1 month 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 11970 times:

Very interesting. I had not heard these terms before either. A quick check with the Collins English Dictionary lists the first meaning of the noun "gauge" as "a standard measurement, dimension, capacity, or quantity". So "upgauge" and "downgauge" are perfectly within their literal meaning as in different degrees of capacity just like "upgrade" and "downgrade" literally distinguish various grades.

The Collins Dictionary does also list the meanings explained in some of the previous posts i.e. the thickness of metal sheets as well as the width of railroad tracks but these are just derivatives of the original meaning along with 13 other derivatives.


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