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DL 747-400's To Become Longest-Serving In History?  
User currently offlineTranspac787 From United States of America, joined Jul 2007, 3214 posts, RR: 13
Posted (4 years 6 months 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 27849 times:

Hey all,

Per this thread:

Delta Post Q1 Loss (by deltal1011man Apr 20 2010 in Civil Aviation)

DL is going to be increasing the leases on their 16-ship 747-400 fleet for 5 to 7 years. As the 747-451's were some of the very-first delivered 744's back in 1989, is it possible they will go on to become the longest flying 747's in history??

When NW retired their pax 742's from scheduled passenger service some years ago, they were 28 years old serving from 1979 to 2007. If the DL 747-451 leases are extended until 2017, some of the ships will make 28 and nearly 29 years old. Have there been any other 747's that have flown in scheduled passenger service for longer??




82 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineOA412 From United States of America, joined Dec 2000, 5306 posts, RR: 25
Reply 1, posted (4 years 6 months 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 27778 times:

As I recall, the 741s at both AF and BA went close to, if not above, 30 years old as well.


Hughes Airwest - Top Banana In The West
User currently offlineFlyinround731 From United States of America, joined Jun 2000, 241 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (4 years 6 months 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 27744 times:

Iran Air has a 747-100 that's been in service since 1977 or 1979. That's 31 years at the least.

http://www.airliners.net/photo/Iran-Air/Boeing-747-186B/1597466/M/


User currently offlinena From Germany, joined Dec 1999, 10765 posts, RR: 9
Reply 3, posted (4 years 6 months 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 27716 times:

Good news that these birds will be around some time longer. Please note that only 10 of Delta´s/NWAs 744s are in an advanced age, they are 20-22 years old now. The other 6 are much younger, having been built 1999-2002.

While quite common for a Jumbo freighter thirty years service are quite rare for a pax-747 though some have served that long continously. 747-151 N601US was 30 years old when retired by NWA in 2000, as were N623US and N624US when retired last winter. Other example: Transaero has some 742s in its fleet which are 29 years old.


User currently offlineMSPNWA From United States of America, joined Apr 2009, 1966 posts, RR: 2
Reply 4, posted (4 years 6 months 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 27685 times:

One of the first competitors that came to my mind is Iran Air, especially those first two SPs. Those were 1976 builds.

In-house got to be close in comparison to ships like N601US and N613US. It would depend on how long those planes were flying just charter ops. 613 was about 32 years-old when it was retired.


User currently offlinespartanmjf From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 506 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (4 years 6 months 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 27685 times:

N749EV - a Boeing 747-132 - originally delivered to Eastern in 1970, flew for PA to 1991, and was carrying cargo for Evergreen well into the 2000's [pics show her in 2007]. She was converted into a flying tanker and is pictured in the a.net database doing a water drop at Frankfurt Hahn in 2009 - not bad for 39 years old.

And who said only DC-9's lasted that long?



"Nuts to the man in 21D!"
User currently offlineaviationbuff08 From United States of America, joined Feb 2008, 346 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (4 years 6 months 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 27650 times:

Does DL have any spare 744 to run extra sections to Europe to get some people home from both side of the Atlantic?

User currently offlineseabosdca From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 5606 posts, RR: 6
Reply 7, posted (4 years 6 months 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 27588 times:

The Iran Air Force still has some 1970-vintage 741s, and won't be retiring them anytime soon. They will almost certainly hit 50 years. I doubt DL will still be flying 744s in 2039.  

Edit: I see you were asking about scheduled passenger service. Even then, they will have awhile to go to match BA's 741 fleet, which served for 28 years (1970-1998).

[Edited 2010-04-20 11:38:25]

User currently offlinena From Germany, joined Dec 1999, 10765 posts, RR: 9
Reply 8, posted (4 years 6 months 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 27534 times:

Quoting OA412 (Reply 1):
As I recall, the 741s at both AF and BA went close to, if not above, 30 years old as well.

BA retired its 741s when between 24 and 29 years old, AFs 741s were sold when ca. between 22 and 26 years old.

Quoting Flyinround731 (Reply 2):
Iran Air has a 747-100 that's been in service since 1977 or 1979. That's 31 years at the least.

That 741 is from 79. I´ve flown with it, its still in good shape. Iran Air has 4 SPs and two 742s which were built in 1976-79, the oldest, a SP, being an impressive 34 years old now. Almost NWA DC-9 level  This SP MUST hold the record as longest-serving 747 in continous pax-service. One of their 742s is also from 1976.


User currently offlinen901wa From United States of America, joined Oct 2009, 468 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (4 years 6 months 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 27516 times:

I think Evergreen's N749EV was a orignal Delta Bird. I think they took that 747-132. 32 being Delta's Boeing cust. nbr. I am glad they are keeping the whales around. Thats what my NWA boss calls them   I wish they would order the -8i.

User currently offlineAndz From South Africa, joined Feb 2004, 8455 posts, RR: 10
Reply 10, posted (4 years 6 months 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 27374 times:
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SAA retired their first 742 in 2004. She was delivered in 1971.

ZS-SAN "Lebombo" flew for almost 33 years and was retired to Rand Airport as a museum piece in March 2004. She was later joined by a retired SAA 747SP.



After Monday and Tuesday even the calendar says WTF...
User currently offlineViscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 25638 posts, RR: 22
Reply 11, posted (4 years 6 months 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 27338 times:

Quoting Transpac787 (Thread starter):
Have there been any other 747's that have flown in scheduled passenger service for longer??
Quoting na (Reply 8):
BA retired its 741s when between 24 and 29 years old

Did any BA 741s make it to 29 years? I thought 28 was the maximum if you count from delivery date in 1970 until retirement in 1998. However, in terms of their time in service, their first few 741s were delivered between April and June 1970 but sat idle at LHR for almost a year due to a dispute with their pilots. Their first 741 flight didn't go into service until April 14, 1971. By then they had 6 parked 741s, including 3 more delivered in February 1971.

That dispute gave Pan Am and TWA a major competitive advantage on the important U.S.-LHR routes with a one-year headstart with 747 service while BA was still flying only 707s and VC-10s..

[Edited 2010-04-20 11:58:26]

[Edited 2010-04-20 11:58:57]

User currently offlinespartanmjf From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 506 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (4 years 6 months 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 27309 times:

Delta. Eastern. What the heck - both were in Atlanta, right?      

Thanks, n901wa - my error!

N712CK - now in service with Kalitta - began her life in July 1970 with her first flight and delivery to United. There are several -131's [1969 first flights] listed on another site as still serving with the Iranian air force.

[Edited 2010-04-20 12:05:47]


"Nuts to the man in 21D!"
User currently offlineIBERIA747 From Spain, joined Aug 2003, 1831 posts, RR: 58
Reply 13, posted (4 years 6 months 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 27234 times:

Iberia's EC-GAG (B747-256B) joined the fleet as EC-BRQ in January 1972 and was retired from service in March 2003. That makes 32 years.


¡¡VIVA ESPAÑA!!
User currently offlineseabosdca From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 5606 posts, RR: 6
Reply 14, posted (4 years 6 months 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 27234 times:

Quoting na (Reply 8):
That 741 is from 79. I´ve flown with it, its still in good shape. Iran Air has 4 SPs and two 742s which were built in 1976-79, the oldest, a SP, being an impressive 34 years old now.

You have to hand it to Iran Air. The fact that they keep 747s in good shape (and they really do look pretty good) for 30+ years, despite chronic parts supply issues related to politics, shows they have some of the best maintenance personnel in the world.

For all you DL personnel on here, imagine that you couldn't easily obtain parts for your DC-9s but had to keep them in the same shape they are currently in...


User currently offlinen901wa From United States of America, joined Oct 2009, 468 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (4 years 6 months 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 27169 times:

Hi spartanmif. I know what you are talking about. They both flew L-1011's and 747, 757, 727 and DC-9's at the same time.  

User currently offlinedavescj From United States of America, joined Jun 2007, 2307 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (4 years 6 months 6 days 17 hours ago) and read 26902 times:

I hope the 744 lives until (false hope) of DL flying the 747-intercontinental.

That said, I think Iran Air does have the oldest flying 747. But, where are they getting service from ? The US trade embargo against Iran includes parts, no?

Dave



Can I have a mojito on this flight?
User currently offlinena From Germany, joined Dec 1999, 10765 posts, RR: 9
Reply 17, posted (4 years 6 months 6 days 17 hours ago) and read 26835 times:

Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 11):
Did any BA 741s make it to 29 years? I thought 28 was the maximum if you count from delivery date in 1970 until retirement in 1998.

I just had a look, G-AWNA was 28 1/2 years old when retired in Nov. 1998.


User currently offlinespartanmjf From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 506 posts, RR: 0
Reply 18, posted (4 years 6 months 6 days 17 hours ago) and read 26804 times:

Quoting n901wa (Reply 15):
They both flew L-1011's and 747, 757, 727 and DC-9's at the same time

They also both flew DC-10's in the late 1980's.......



"Nuts to the man in 21D!"
User currently offlineFlighty From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 8634 posts, RR: 2
Reply 19, posted (4 years 6 months 6 days 17 hours ago) and read 26722 times:

747s fly a lot of hours, but in terms of cycles they have an easy life. The 744 enjoys pretty efficient fuel burn and a 2 person crew. So economically they are still all right. The limiting factor for Delta might be maintenance of extremely high time 744s. I don't know what that involves, if anything. If they heavy check these planes and put new seats and IFE in them, they should account themselves pretty well until retirement.

User currently offlinekeesje From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 20, posted (4 years 6 months 6 days 17 hours ago) and read 26513 times:

its about hours cyclus, not years.

I knwo a few 747-300 that had over 120.000 hours and went to another passenger carrier.


User currently offlineViscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 25638 posts, RR: 22
Reply 21, posted (4 years 6 months 6 days 17 hours ago) and read 26441 times:

Quoting seabosdca (Reply 7):
The Iran Air Force still has some 1970-vintage 741s, and won't be retiring them anytime soon. They will almost certainly hit 50 years.

I think many of those are stored and inactive. It's hard to verify that kind of information.

Quoting davescj (Reply 16):
I think Iran Air does have the oldest flying 747.

Several sources say that the GE engine testbed is the oldest 747 currently flying, 40 years old last month. It was the 25th built, delivered as N744PA to Pan Am on March 21, 1970. (It's ironic that GE's testbed has P&W engines.)


View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Kenneth Low
View Large View Medium
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Photo © Andrew W. Sieber



As it looked in the 1970s and shortly before Pan Am shut down in 1991.


View Large View Medium
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Photo © Ken Rose
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Frank Schaefer



[Edited 2010-04-20 13:44:57]

User currently offlineTranspac787 From United States of America, joined Jul 2007, 3214 posts, RR: 13
Reply 22, posted (4 years 6 months 6 days 17 hours ago) and read 26339 times:

Quoting keesje (Reply 20):
its about hours cyclus, not years.

I knwo a few 747-300 that had over 120.000 hours and went to another passenger carrier.

Considering I, the OP, asked about *years* in the thread title, I wasn't much interested in the cycle count - only longevity.  


User currently offlineOA412 From United States of America, joined Dec 2000, 5306 posts, RR: 25
Reply 23, posted (4 years 6 months 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 26230 times:

Quoting na (Reply 8):
BA retired its 741s when between 24 and 29 years old, AFs 741s were sold when ca. between 22 and 26 years old.

Interesting. Thanks for the info! I had always thought that they were closer to/over 30.



Hughes Airwest - Top Banana In The West
User currently offlinedalca From Netherlands, joined Aug 2006, 535 posts, RR: 0
Reply 24, posted (4 years 6 months 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 26175 times:

KLM 's PH-BFA, City of Atlanta, isn't that much older I think. These babies are flying a long time


Zanair flight, please hold on finals as we have to clear rhino's off the runway. Next flight KUL-FRA-AMS Flown in A319,A
25 Transpac787 : Not really, since two are in temporary storage. Will be interesting to see if we see any 744's find their way to AMS for a few days though.
26 falstaff : TWA's N93101 was the 5th plane built and sold to Iran in 1975. What happened to her? She was delivered to TW 12-31-69. The newest photo in the databa
27 FWAERJ : I guess the new question won't be "when will NW/DL retire their DC-9s", but rather "when will DL retire their 747-400s"? Still, I sort of figured that
28 USAirALB : did NW's latest 747 recieve the signature interior?
29 FWAERJ : No. All NW 744s were delivered with the standard interior. Not sure if the refurbished planes will switch.
30 seabosdca : Hard to imagine that, since they didn't bother for any 767s.
31 Post contains images Kent350787 : How is BFA doing these days? It was looking tired when I flew on it in 1998, but I assume has been updated a couple of times since then? Then again,
32 PC12Fan : It's just hard for me to think of 747-400's as old!
33 falstaff : I know what you mean. I teach high school auto shop and when I talk about old cars I mean cars older than 40 years. The students think I mean cars fr
34 Post contains images NWAROOSTER : N749EV - a Boeing 747-132 - originally delivered to Eastern in 1970 saw service with PA was carrying cargo for Evergreen well into the 200's [pics sho
35 USAirALB : Really? Wasnt the latest like 2002?
36 timf : Some of them have the signature-style overhead bins on the upper deck, but everything else is still the standard interior. Yes, even on the aircraft d
37 davescj : I keep hoping that DL will order the 748i, but I doubt it will happen. I think DL is being served well by the 744, however. I can think of any number
38 stratosphere : I had the pleasure of flying on 6601 from HNL to MSP on the upper deck in 1992. I was just in ATL this past sunday and had one of those ungodly 4 hrs
39 UAL747 : I just need to add the video for this event. Craziness!
40 Post contains links Andz : Yeah it hardly seems like yesterday when they first took to the air. I was in the hangar for the welcoming ceremony for SAA's first 744, hard to thin
41 brilondon : The ones you mentioned don't count as the OP asked about passenger service and yours are not in passenger service.
42 Post contains links and images svenvdm : Don't forget Orient Thai's very old passenger 747s: View Large View MediumPhoto © YK
43 jfk787nyc : I really wish and feel Delta should order the 748i there are a variety of flights they can fly. JFK-TLV double daily DTW-NRT DTW-AMS ATL-CDG LAX-ASIA
44 Burkhard : Yes, 748i for Delta as real aircraft instead of Barbieliners.
45 na : Barbieliner, haha, very nice word for these boring newage plasticcomputertwinjets. There is still a bit of hope for a real aircraft, a Delta 748. Wit
46 SolarFlyer22 : I thought sanctions only applied to planes 7 years and younger and exempted parts. In practical terms though, they can't get anything. The Treasury D
47 UAL747DEN : That was a joke right? When thinking about airline safety Iran really doesn't come to mind.... I think that there is a very good chance DL will order
48 falstaff : I don't see Iran Air planes falling out of the sky. Some of the other operators in Iran may not have that great of a track record. I would think they
49 mayor : Just as an FYI, DL also flew DC-10s in the mid 70s.
50 indolikaa : This maybe a dumb question, but couldn't Iran Air get spare parts for their 747 fleet from retired/scrapped 747's not actually located in the U.S.? I
51 na : Iran´s airlines quite regularly get hold off old airliners to use as spare parts. Iran Air or Mahan recently aquired and dismantled a former AF 747-
52 vv701 : Its stats were: Total time: 102,150 hrs Cycles: 20,917 First flight: 13 March 1970 Last revenue flight: 31 October 1998 Age on retirement: 28 years,
53 EL-AL : El Al Israel Airlines operated passenger service on B747-258s from 1971 till 2005, that is 34 years! The last 742 to operate passenger service was 4X-
54 413X3 : Technically they almost always have 3 pilots in the cockpit, one a relief pilot, because of the long sectors a 747 does. The only thing a -400 did wa
55 n471wn : This expected longevity of Delta's 747-400 fleet makes the planned scrapping of the Air New Zealand 747-400 (24386) with less than 89,000 hours and 12
56 LVZXV : Good to know someone plans to keep their 747-400s for several years to come. As a passenger its higher cruise speed than its younger competitors does
57 Max Q : The 747 was a superb design, ahead of it's time with growth potential built in. She will always be the queen of the skies.
58 Post contains images Transpac787 : Yes, ship 6315 (N675NW) was delivered 13 March 2002 and the final, ship 6316 (N676NW), was delivered 18 April 2002. Within Asia?? Probably not. The 7
59 deltal1011man : Yes, 2 birds are parked. I saw on FT that Delta will be running the 744 oin ATL-DTW-AMS a few days and will be doing DTW-JFK-AMS on 330s. (note i hav
60 scorpy : Has NW/DL flown their 744 hard or have they done a lot of sitting around? I know some of the LH 744's are already over 100,000 hours. Does DL have any
61 Transpac787 : The 747-451's are relatively low-cycle ships compared to other 744's. The bulk of their lives have been used on flying to the Orient. Within an avera
62 scorpy : They dont' seem to sub them on domestic or atlantic sectors as much as other carriers like UA for example.
63 Viscount724 : However it (and BA's next 5 741s) were then parked at LHR and didn't go into service until almost a year later due to a dispute with their pilots. I
64 PSU.DTW.SCE : Keep in mind two things: 1) Most of the aftermarket parts, components, etc. are not made by Boeing, they are manufactured by their suppliers. Boeing
65 akelley728 : That's no different from any other long-haul airliner (A340, 777, etc.) which would also have a relief pilot on board.
66 SYfan100 : I can recall many of a Friday night when leaving MSP from picking a family member up when I was kid at by the hangars that were nearest to the Main Te
67 mayor : Just doing a little research, here on DL's original 747s and where they are now: MSN 19896.......now 481EV and apparently still flying for Evergreen..
68 Transpac787 : It's actually quite rare for the NW/DL 744's to have only a 3-man crew, LAX-NRT being about the only regular with a 1.5 crew. MSP-NRT, DTW-NRT, DTW-N
69 falstaff : when might that be? This summer? I plan on flying DTW-AMS and would like to get on a 744 if possible. I flew on an NW 744 on that route in 08. Sure t
70 KingAir200 : Actually, when I was in MNL in 2009, the mechanics there were NW employees. I would assume DL has retained them.
71 PSU.DTW.SCE : Its right now, actually its ATL-AMS to help move the backlog of passengers stuck due to the volcano. On 4/22, they flew DTW-ATL on the 744 to reposit
72 seabosdca : I bet seeing that 744 in the system made a lot of exhausted CSAs very happy.
73 Post contains images Transpac787 : No kidding An additional 33 J-class and 127 Y-class seats every flight goes a LONG way.
74 PSU.DTW.SCE : Not to mention the additional 243 seats to/from JFK as well thanks to the use of that A330-200.
75 redtailsforever : I would say Northwest now Delta has to have one of the lowest cycle aircraft, up there with the long range airlines, BA JAL. I remember when I was in
76 747400sp : Also UA operated 741 until 1999. Believe it or not, some of these 741 was as quite as a 767 sometimes.
77 atcsundevil : I'm happy to see that the 744 has worked well for the new Delta. Dare I say I hope to see a 748 order someday...? My guess is it's nothing more than a
78 hammer : MSN 20247.......now 709CK and apparently flying for Kalitta......delivered 11/71.....going on 39 years N709CK IS NO LONGER FLYING--HAS BEEN RETIRED FO
79 mayor : Thanks. I got the info off of the FAA site and they apparently don't keep it all that up to date.
80 Post contains links and images dairbus : Not currently flying but still around. It's currently at the Evergreen Aviation & Space Museum in McMinnville, OR. It's parked in front facing th
81 LVZXV : Interesting, thanks for sharing! Aloha, /ZXV
82 mayor : That pic you have in the original colors is at ORD 5/71....about 4 months before I started. The reason it's at AA's gate is because, initially, AA di
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