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Western "DC-10 Spaceship" Titles?  
User currently offlineTango-Bravo From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 3806 posts, RR: 29
Posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 3350 times:

When did Western Airlines apply "DC-10 Spaceship" titles below the cockpit windows of their DC-10-10s? When were the titles removed/no longer applied?

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User currently offlinemtnwest1979 From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 2485 posts, RR: 1
Reply 1, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 3255 times:

Quoting Tango-Bravo (Thread starter):
When were the titles removed/no longer applied?

No idea, but a guess would be around late May/early June 1979.

Seeing them in SLC in mid 80's, I don't remember seeing them on there.



"If it ain't broke, don't fix it!"
User currently offlineCF-CPI From Canada, joined Nov 2000, 1146 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 3243 times:

Thje "DC-10 Spaceship" was a marketing tool applied to those aircraft from day one (1973). Most were delivered that way, but I suspect that by the early 80s, if not sooner, it was disappearing. For example, there were some later DC-10 deliveries (ship 913, 914, and 915) built around 1980, that never carried the titles.

User currently offlineWA707atMSP From United States of America, joined Oct 2006, 2264 posts, RR: 8
Reply 3, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 3178 times:

Quoting mtnwest1979 (Reply 1):
Quoting Tango-Bravo (Thread starter):
When were the titles removed/no longer applied?

No idea, but a guess would be around late May/early June 1979.

A pretty safe guess; this was at the same time "DC-10 Luxury Liner" titles were changed to "American Airlines "Luxury Liner", and the DC-10 titles disappeared from the #2 engines of NA DC-10s.



Seaholm Maples are #1!
User currently offlineFoxBravo From United States of America, joined Nov 2003, 3008 posts, RR: 4
Reply 4, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 3146 times:

Quoting mtnwest1979 (Reply 1):
No idea, but a guess would be around late May/early June 1979.
Quoting WA707atMSP (Reply 3):
A pretty safe guess; this was at the same time "DC-10 Luxury Liner" titles were changed to "American Airlines "Luxury Liner", and the DC-10 titles disappeared from the #2 engines of NA DC-10s.

I would agree, although if not by then, most likely after October of that year!  



Common sense is not so common. -Voltaire
User currently offlineSpaceshipDC10 From Canada, joined Jan 2013, 2078 posts, RR: 3
Reply 5, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 3078 times:

I don't know how many had it but one or more wore the titles on the lower rear part of the fuselage.


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I wish I was a glow worm.
User currently offlineTango-Bravo From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 3806 posts, RR: 29
Reply 6, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 5 days 6 hours ago) and read 2853 times:

Quoting SpaceshipDC10 (Reply 5):
I don't know how many had it but one or more wore the titles on the lower rear part of the fuselage

Thank you for posting the photo of N905WA (taken ~2 yrs after it was delivered). After taking another look at my pre-delivery photos of N901WA (delivered 4/19/73) that prompted my o.p. question, I notice that, at the time, it had "DC-10" only (no "Spaceship") titles in the same location pictured in the reply 5 photo taken in 1976. So perhaps on some of WA's '10s, "Spaceship" titles were simply added below the already-present "DC-10" titles?

At the same time, I well remember seeing from within ~20' "DC-10 Spaceship" titles by the cockpit windows on a WA '10 nosed-in to the gate at MSP during the winter of 1973-74. Unfortunately, that was some years before I was even aware of aircraft registrations/fleet numbers.


User currently onlineSLCUT2777 From United States of America, joined Dec 2005, 4138 posts, RR: 9
Reply 7, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 2725 times:

My take as Western Airlines moved to the newer "Bud-Lite" or AA livery in the early 80s they began to disappear. During the 70s though it was always fun to see celebrities/stars from Gene Kelly to William Shatner + Leonard Nimoy advertising. But by '86-'87 as DL took over Western the DC-10 fleet went by the wayside.


DELTA Air Lines; The Only Way To Fly from Salt Lake City; Let the Western Heritage always be with Delta!
User currently offlineDL747400 From United States of America, joined Sep 2008, 334 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 2620 times:

Many airlines operating the DC-10 removed the DC-10 titles from their jets shortly after the horrific crash of American Airlines Flight # 191 on May 25th, 1979 at ORD.

At that point, few airlines wanted to promote the fact that they flew this type of aircraft and many passengers specifically asked to not be booked on DC-10 flights. As a result, many airlines removed DC-10 references from their aircraft and marketing.


User currently offlineFoxBravo From United States of America, joined Nov 2003, 3008 posts, RR: 4
Reply 9, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 2184 times:

Quoting DL747400 (Reply 8):
Many airlines operating the DC-10 removed the DC-10 titles from their jets shortly after the horrific crash of American Airlines Flight # 191 on May 25th, 1979 at ORD.

Yes, this is what replies #1 and #3 were alluding to. In addition, Western had its own horrific DC-10 crash at Mexico City in October of that year. That one had nothing to do with the aircraft type, but surely didn't help with the image problem.



Common sense is not so common. -Voltaire
User currently onlineSLCUT2777 From United States of America, joined Dec 2005, 4138 posts, RR: 9
Reply 10, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 2148 times:

Quoting FoxBravo (Reply 9):
Yes, this is what replies #1 and #3 were alluding to. In addition, Western had its own horrific DC-10 crash at Mexico City in October of that year. That one had nothing to do with the aircraft type, but surely didn't help with the image problem.

TK actaully had the first big mechanical failure of a DC-10 as I recall back in Msrch of 1974. The Western crash in MEX 5 years later was mostly due to a controller error placing the aircraft on a runway undergoing reconstruction. The TK incident killed 346 people and until the TFN disaster 3 years later was the deadliest crash of a civillian aircraft. Cargo doors were the design flaw much the way the AA 191 disaster at ORD five years later was related to the engine mount. It was the start of the eventual end for MDD.



DELTA Air Lines; The Only Way To Fly from Salt Lake City; Let the Western Heritage always be with Delta!
User currently offlineSpaceshipDC10 From Canada, joined Jan 2013, 2078 posts, RR: 3
Reply 11, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 2115 times:

Quoting CF-CPI (Reply 2):
I suspect that by the early 80s, if not sooner, it was disappearing.

I think it was sooner.

Quoting mtnwest1979 (Reply 1):
No idea, but a guess would be around late May/early June 1979.

Not necessarily.

Quoting SLCUT2777 (Reply 7):
My take as Western Airlines moved to the newer "Bud-Lite" or AA livery in the early 80s they began to disappear.

They dropped the titles well before introducing the Bud-Lite on the DC-10

Quoting Tango-Bravo (Reply 6):
I notice that, at the time, it had "DC-10" only (no "Spaceship") titles in the same location pictured in the reply 5 photo taken in 1976

Many airlines used to display the McDonnell Douglas DC-10 logo on their aircraft in that area.

On the picture below, dating from February 1979, we see N909WA without the "Spaceship" title only DC-10. It was delivered about a year before being photographed.


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I wish I was a glow worm.
User currently onlineProst From United States of America, joined Oct 2012, 1249 posts, RR: 1
Reply 12, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 4 days 11 hours ago) and read 2009 times:

Funny anecdote. We were in LAX in the mid to early 1970s when the DC-10s must have been new. Western Airlines had a sign in the gate area advertising the DC-10 spaceship, and it looked like a current seat map, pointy end up, tail at the bottom, wings were truncated, so they looked like fins on a rocket. So, to a small child (myself) I thought it was a rocket--a real spaceship! I was so pissed off when we didn't blast off into a space. When the flight attendant came to our row, I told her "It isn't very nice to lie." My parents were completely flummoxed, and I was a stubborn kid, I clammed up. It wasn't until DECADES later when we were talking about family stories that my mother brought this up, I had completely forgotten about it. We couldn't stop laughing.

To that poor flight attendant, sorry about the snotty kid calling you a liar in the early-mid 1970s!


User currently offlineCF-CPI From Canada, joined Nov 2000, 1146 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 1825 times:

Going through the photo database it appears that N912WA, which first flew in April, 1979 may have been the last one to be identified as a DC-10 Spaceship. N913WA came along in the summer of 1979, and did not have any identifier. I would bet you anything it was the crash of AA191 at ORD that made the difference, as a previous poster hinted.

User currently offlineSpaceshipDC10 From Canada, joined Jan 2013, 2078 posts, RR: 3
Reply 14, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 1794 times:

Quoting CF-CPI (Reply 13):
I would bet you anything it was the crash of AA191 at ORD that made the difference, as a previous poster hinted.

Well, as I said earlier, there's a picture (see above) dating from before the crash and the aircraft doesn't have the titles. On the link below, the picture date from December 1980 and there's still the "Spaceship" title. Either they removed the titles in a very randome way or there's something wrong with the picture's dates.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/23032926@N05/8238840579/in/photostream/



I wish I was a glow worm.
User currently offlineViscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 26029 posts, RR: 22
Reply 15, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 1725 times:

Quoting SLCUT2777 (Reply 10):

TK actually had the first big mechanical failure of a DC-10 as I recall back in March of 1974.

I would say the first was the AA DC-10 (N103AA) in June 1972 over Windsor, Ontario soon after takeoff from DTW en route to BUF. But fortunately that one didn't result in any fatalities as they were able to get it back to DTW after the rear cargo door failed and resulted in major control problems. It was operating LAX-DTW-BUF-LGA.
http://aviation-safety.net/database/record.php?id=19720612-0

The TK crash 2 years later was a repeat of the AA event but with a much more tragic outcome. If memory correct, the TK aircraft had not yet been modified as required by the FAA following the AA incident.


User currently offlineTWA1985 From United States of America, joined Nov 2006, 651 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 1472 times:

Quoting SLCUT2777 (Reply 7):

The "Bud Light" theme was applied starting in 1985, and the advertisements featuring celebrities were around as of 1985.

Here are two TV ads from 1985 featuring Gene Kelly, Fred Astaire, William Shatner and Leonard Nimoy.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=CcsB4ZU81NA

http://youtube.com/watch?v=CzR7xa3KTaQ


User currently offlinecf6ppe From United States of America, joined Mar 2006, 352 posts, RR: 0
Reply 17, posted (1 year 6 months 1 week 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 1326 times:

Quoting SpaceshipDC10 (Reply 11):
Many airlines used to display the McDonnell Douglas DC-10 logo on their aircraft in that area.

Strange how today the McDonnell Douglas DC-10 signage would say Boeing DC10...   


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