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AA MD-11s Vs. AA 777s  
User currently offlinetsugambler From United States of America, joined Jul 2010, 302 posts, RR: 0
Posted (3 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 8 hours ago) and read 12479 times:

When did AA start receiving its MD-11s, and how soon did they notice they weren't performing to specifications? How long did it take for them to decide to order the 777 instead, and when did they start receiving them?

28 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlinecommavia From United States of America, joined Apr 2005, 11689 posts, RR: 62
Reply 1, posted (3 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 8 hours ago) and read 12464 times:

Quoting tsugambler (Thread starter):
When did AA start receiving its MD-11s

1 February 1991.

Quoting tsugambler (Thread starter):
how soon did they notice they weren't performing to specifications?

Pretty much immediately.

AA's outstanding MD11 orders were curtailed, and a deal relatively quickly worked out to sell the airplanes ultimately delivered (totalling 19) to FedEx as soon as replacements began arriving, including the 777 in 1999.

Quoting tsugambler (Thread starter):
How long did it take for them to decide to order the 777 instead, and when did they start receiving them?

The first 777 order was finalized on 21 November 1996, with the first delivery on 21 January 1999. The last MD11 was retired in - if I'm not mistaken - 2001.


User currently offlinejfk777 From United States of America, joined Aug 2006, 8386 posts, RR: 7
Reply 2, posted (3 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 12033 times:
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AA expected the plane to have issues but in 1990 the only other viable options were more 763ER or 744's. The A340 was still 3 years away and the 777 5 years away. AA was in teh middle of buying LHR, Latin America plus expanding service to Japan with SEA a & San Jose to NRT. AA needed planes "yesterday" in a big way and the MD-11 was the only bigger then a 767 option to get there. They even had to configure some A300-600 from "caribean" configuration to 3 class Atlantic with F and J seats for BOS and JFK to LHR flights. The 777 proved to be AA's answer, who could have imagined 77W joining the fleet.

User currently offlineaa61hvy From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 13977 posts, RR: 57
Reply 3, posted (3 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 12002 times:

Quoting jfk777 (Reply 2):
only bigger then a 767 option

AA flew a DC-10-30 to NRT from SJC for a short period.



Go big or go home
User currently offlinejfk777 From United States of America, joined Aug 2006, 8386 posts, RR: 7
Reply 4, posted (3 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 11755 times:
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Quoting aa61hvy (Reply 3):
Quoting jfk777 (Reply 2):
only bigger then a 767 option

AA flew a DC-10-30 to NRT from SJC for a short period.

Yes it did but, I am refering to what planes are available new in 1990. DC -10's were out of production by then.


User currently offlineBoeingGuy From United States of America, joined Dec 2010, 3095 posts, RR: 7
Reply 5, posted (3 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 11709 times:

Quoting commavia (Reply 1):
The last MD11 was retired in - if I'm not mistaken - 2001.



IIRC the last MD11 routes were DFW-SCL and DFW-GRU. DFW-FRA wasn't changed to other equipment too long before that. So it appears they were last used on long international flights out of DFW.


User currently offlinefxramper From United States of America, joined Dec 2005, 7305 posts, RR: 85
Reply 6, posted (3 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 11686 times:
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Quoting BoeingGuy (Reply 5):
IIRC the last MD11 routes were DFW-SCL and DFW-GRU. DFW-FRA wasn't changed to other equipment too long before that. So it appears they were last used on long international flights out of DFW.

Your correct. Narita was one of the first replacements on the 777 sending the 11 to South America. A shame the 11 didn't live any longer than it did in AA livery. I had a blast in the 11 sim at DFW Flight Academy before 9/11 jacked everything up.   


User currently offlineN62NA From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 4499 posts, RR: 7
Reply 7, posted (3 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 4 hours ago) and read 11518 times:

Quoting jfk777 (Reply 2):
They even had to configure some A300-600 from "caribean" configuration to 3 class Atlantic with F and J seats for BOS and JFK to LHR flights

And don't forget EWR-LHR!


User currently offlinecanoecarrier From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 2839 posts, RR: 12
Reply 8, posted (3 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 4 hours ago) and read 11427 times:

Quoting tsugambler (Thread starter):
When did AA start receiving its MD-11s, and how soon did they notice they weren't performing to specifications?

I'm sure there are 1000's of threads on this question, but please excuse my question..how bad was it performing and what were they expecting? I was almost going to say something like, well they merged with TWA in the early '00's and they had long haul capability but after some research into real numbers TWA's long haul fleet was pathetic at any date after 2000.



The beatings will continue until morale improves
User currently offlinePSU.DTW.SCE From United States of America, joined Jan 2002, 7593 posts, RR: 27
Reply 9, posted (3 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 3 hours ago) and read 11140 times:

Quoting commavia (Reply 1):
The first 777 order was finalized on 21 November 1996, with the first delivery on 21 January 1999. The last MD11 was retired in - if I'm not mistaken - 2001.

October 2001 was the last MD-11 flight, GRU-DFW.

The DC-10's last flight was November 2000, HNL-DFW.


User currently offlineseabosdca From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 5518 posts, RR: 6
Reply 10, posted (3 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 3 hours ago) and read 11131 times:

Quoting canoecarrier (Reply 8):
how bad was it performing and what were they expecting?

Claimed range was 7200 nm at first. The actual range turned out to be more like 6500 nm. Obviously this caused a lot of trouble on ~6000 nm (GC) routes.

Later on, with all the improvements rolled in, the aircraft ended up with a range of over 7000 nm, comparable to the A340-300X.


User currently offlineikramerica From United States of America, joined May 2005, 21534 posts, RR: 59
Reply 11, posted (3 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 2 hours ago) and read 11074 times:

Quoting seabosdca (Reply 10):
Later on, with all the improvements rolled in, the aircraft ended up with a range of over 7000 nm, comparable to the A340-300X.

And close to the original 777-200IGW spec as well.



Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
User currently offlinetsugambler From United States of America, joined Jul 2010, 302 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (3 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 1 hour ago) and read 10881 times:

What performance improvement changes did they implement for the MD-11? I know engines (both PW and GE) had a lot to do with it.

User currently offlineMileHighOffice From Australia, joined Jun 2010, 153 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (3 years 5 months 1 week 6 days 1 hour ago) and read 10788 times:

The MD-11 did not deliver the range as promised, and when it closer its fate was already sealed with AA and DL. The 777 gave them better lift and range performance (NRT was the big one for both) with two engines. With the MD11 DL had range issue with ATL and JFK and AA had issues with JFK and DFW. Sometimes stops in SEA or ANC westbound. Management was not happy.

That being said, the MD-11 was a wonderful airplane to fly on. What is may have lacked in range on the 7,000nm runs it made up for in experience when if roared off the runway like a rocket. (Of course, the AA 777s on MIA-DFW used to rocket up to 41,000 feet before you crossed the everglades -- when the weather was stormy around South Florida the high-speed climb they could put on with the 777 was amazing... above the weather in no time -- so the magic of the 11 on that route was soon replaced by the biz buzz saws!)

The tri-motors are a thing of the past, but in terms of gracefulness the L-1011, DC-10 and MD-11 still rate among the most fun to watch.


User currently offlinetsugambler From United States of America, joined Jul 2010, 302 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (3 years 5 months 1 week 6 days ago) and read 10730 times:

Quoting MileHighOffice (Reply 13):
The tri-motors are a thing of the past, but in terms of gracefulness the L-1011, DC-10 and MD-11 still rate among the most fun to watch.

I'm hoping to actually fly on a KLM MD-11 sometime before they're withdrawn from passenger service. I'd love to fly on a DC-10 too, but the only passenger airline still operating them is Biman Bangladesh, and I don't think I can fly all the way to Dhaka just for that. If only I could catch a ride on a FedEx MD-10 or a USAF KC-10!


User currently onlineThe777Man From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 6577 posts, RR: 55
Reply 15, posted (3 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 10406 times:

AA was so unhappy with the short falls in range of the MD-11 that they refuesed to take delivery of them. I guess they worked out a deal with McDonnel-Douglas and eventually took delivery. Must have been very embarrassing when the launch customer refuses delivery.......

The777Man



Need a Boeing 777 Firing Order....Further to fly....CI, MU, LX and LH 777s
User currently offlineBurkhard From Germany, joined Nov 2006, 4398 posts, RR: 2
Reply 16, posted (3 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 10388 times:

Wasn't reliability another issue with the MD11? I watched the plane into FRA often to be many hours late.

User currently offlinekeny156 From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 58 posts, RR: 0
Reply 17, posted (3 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 16 hours ago) and read 7982 times:

Quoting The777Man (Reply 15):

IIRC, I think the delivered plane was 100kg over and McDonald Douglas settled the dispute with AA by a rembusement of one full fare Y seat on every flight the MD11 made.


User currently offlineC133 From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 225 posts, RR: 0
Reply 18, posted (3 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 7861 times:
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When the fleet was new there were a ton of false failure messages because the parameters were cranked down too tight. For a while (a few weeks, I think) Crandall even parked the delivered airplanes while M-D sorted it all out. The situation was bad enough that employees called the MD-11 "The Scud", as in the old missile. You could launch it, but you never knew where it would come down.


Fine: Tax for doing wrong. Tax: Fine for doing well.
User currently offlinecommavia From United States of America, joined Apr 2005, 11689 posts, RR: 62
Reply 19, posted (3 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 7861 times:

Quoting Burkhard (Reply 16):
Wasn't reliability another issue with the MD11? I watched the plane into FRA often to be many hours late.

Yes.

I have been attacked for this in the past, but I know from personal experience and from friends who were AA MD11 pilots and worked in AA maintenance at the time that the plane did not have a very good reputation with a lot of people within AA. Its frequent tech stops - it spent time in Iceland, for example - earned the plane the nickname "Death Star" and "Scud" among some AA pilots and maintainers.


User currently offline135mech From United States of America, joined Oct 2006, 412 posts, RR: 4
Reply 20, posted (3 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 7096 times:
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When AA first got their MD-11's they threw them back immediately because they could neither meet the range, nor capacity as MD advertised. They threw back the first 25 (I don't know how many they eventually accepted prior to being pushed over to FED-Ex) for "fix" and that helped lead to the 777. However, when Boeing bought MD in 1995, Boeing refused to take anymore MD-11 orders since it was a direct competition for the (much better and more reliable/efficient) 777-200.

User currently offlineBoeingGuy From United States of America, joined Dec 2010, 3095 posts, RR: 7
Reply 21, posted (3 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 5797 times:

Quoting commavia (Reply 19):
I have been attacked for this in the past, but I know from personal experience and from friends who were AA MD11 pilots and worked in AA maintenance at the time that the plane did not have a very good reputation with a lot of people within AA. Its frequent tech stops - it spent time in Iceland, for example - earned the plane the nickname "Death Star" and "Scud" among some AA pilots and maintainers.



I've also heard pilots say that it's a particularly difficult airplane to fly, especially it's handling qualities during landing.

That's what happens when you are more interested in laying off people and making decisions for the short-term like Harry Stonecipher and company. That's why the MD-11 was a relative failure and McDonnell Douglas is no longer in business. That worked so well at McD that they adopted the same philosophy at Boeing for awhile too. Fortunately, new leadership is more interested in good engineering and long term investment.


User currently offlineBOAC911 From United States of America, joined Sep 2004, 453 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (3 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 5657 times:
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Quoting Burkhard (Reply 16):

Wasn't reliability another issue with the MD11? I watched the plane into FRA often to be many hours late.

I believe you're right. I remember having to disembark a MD-11 operating AA70 to FRA because of a fuel leak. We were still at the gate, when we found out about it. They put us on a different MD-11 about three hours later..


User currently offlineckfred From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 5250 posts, RR: 1
Reply 23, posted (3 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 5214 times:

I seem to remember somewhere that when AA was shopping for a plane bigger than the 767-300, Boeing was working on the 777-200 design. AA felt that the wingspan for the 777 was going to be a problem, when it came to parking at gates. So, a folding wingtip became an option, at AA's request.

Then, AA decided to go with the MD-11, because it was going to be ready for delivery well ahead of the 777. From what I read, Boeing was a bit upset at having gone to the effort of designing a folding wingtip, and then AA didn't order the plane.


User currently offlinejfk777 From United States of America, joined Aug 2006, 8386 posts, RR: 7
Reply 24, posted (3 years 5 months 1 week 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 5093 times:
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Quoting ckfred (Reply 23):
Then, AA decided to go with the MD-11, because it was going to be ready for delivery well ahead of the 777. From what I read, Boeing was a bit upset at having gone to the effort of designing a folding wingtip, and then AA didn't order the plane.

Things worked out well for Boeing and AA's large 777 fleet.


25 commavia : [quote=ckfred,reply=23]I seem to remember somewhere that when AA was shopping for a plane bigger than the 767-300, Boeing was working on the 777-200 d
26 IrishAyes : I am intrigued by the fact that AA used the MD-11's on the DFW-SCL/GRU flights. I always thought these were served by 763s until the GRU flight was up
27 aov747 : The 777 rocks, but the MD-11 was a fine airplane, all MD labour and management issues considered. Many airlines loved the birds , like KLM, and they s
28 MileHighOffice : The wing space seemed to be a big issue for them. Was LGA ever a consideration for the 777 or MD-11 during pre-design? The 777 and MD-11 were too hea
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