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Could The 717 Save Money For NWA In The Long Run?  
User currently offlineBR715-A1-30 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Posted (12 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 3067 times:

I know the DC9s are paid for and everything, but consider this. The DC9s are beginning to run out of Spare parts. (They still have some spare parts) like the ones from the Hawaiian DC9s, but what do these cost in maintaining. They must cost a fortune to constantly maintain these junkjets. Even though NWA redid the DC9 interior (which costed alot of money) the Exterior and frame is OLD.

So here is my question. Aside from Aquiring the 717, and training the pilots. Do you think that NWA could save money in the long run. AirTran alone has experienced significant decreases in fuel costs, and maintenance costs over time. I think that if NWA just went ahead and got rid of the DC9s for 717s, That in 5-6 years, they would already see a significant decrease in MX costs, and fuel costs.

This is just my 2 cents, and I would like to hear everyone's opinions.

34 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineAamd11 From UK - Wales, joined Nov 2001, 1061 posts, RR: 1
Reply 1, posted (12 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 3036 times:

Once they get them in the fleet [if thats what they decide to do] and they build up a nicely sized fleet [im not talking 10a/c... more like 30+ minimum] and they have them operating they will realise cost benifits, mainly as you pointed out, in MX and fuel costs alone.
The 9s may be paid form which saves paying for them, but the MX costs must be getting real high now, and they wont be around forver, truth is they have to leave at some point, and they need a NEW aircraft to take their place... the 717 is a good fit IMO, and it will save them loads in fuel at least.

I say if they make a big order for the a/c they will be doing OK with them in the long run.

A^A MD-11
P.S. you may get flamed for the "junkjets" comment...


User currently offlineBR715-A1-30 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 2, posted (12 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 3030 times:

I take back the JunkJets comment, and replace that with GRANDMA JETS... Please help take care of Grandma.

User currently offlineB747-437B From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (12 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 3028 times:

From a pure operational cost standpoint, yes, of course the 717 would cut NW's costs by a significant amount. However, the acquisition costs for a 717 fleet would be significant, and simply put NWA is far too conservative to invest in MORE new aircraft right now, especially with the A330s due on property in the next 12 months. Once the A330s are in the fleet and the Airbus narrowbody order has been filled out, NWA will look towards the DC9s and 742s for replacement. If the 717 line is still going (and I hope it is, because that airplane would be a shame to let die for a lack of marketing), then it stands a pretty darn good shot at winning the NWA order away from the A318 or even the EMB175 (which should be hitting the line right about then). However, the key for that to happen is to keep the 717 in production for that long, through whatever means possible.

User currently offline717fan From Switzerland, joined Nov 2001, 2017 posts, RR: 6
Reply 4, posted (12 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 2940 times:

IMO the 717 would save a lot of money for NWA and is the logical and best replacement for the DC-9, not only in NWA's fleet. But sadly I am not the one who is saying what airplane NWA is to get.....

User currently offlineAcidradio From United States of America, joined Mar 2001, 1874 posts, RR: 10
Reply 5, posted (12 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 2911 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
FORUM MODERATOR

Whatever happened to the rumor that NW would be picking up 3 717s to try out?


Ich haben zwei Platzspielen und ein Microphone
User currently onlinePW100 From Netherlands, joined Jan 2002, 2557 posts, RR: 13
Reply 6, posted (12 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 2869 times:

Well, yes and no.
If you replace an old type with a new type, surely it will LOOK like you will be reducing maintenance costs. However the trick is that it will take NW 5-10 years to replace 170 some niners from the first deliverey to last retirement. And during this transition period they will have the disadvantage of having yet another type in the fleet to maintain. The lower the number of types in your fleet, the lower your maintenance costs.

So another type in thefleet means, another full complement of spare parts to be purchased, another group of maintenance engineers to be trained and paid, another group of pilots to be trained and paid etc. etc. etc. The real benefit will only come after retirement of the last plane. So this is a real depth investment, just as its a depth investment for NW to keep these niners flying as long as economically viable.

PW100



Immigration officer: "What's the purpose of your visit to the USA?" Spotter: "Shooting airliners with my Canon!"
User currently offlineSrbmod From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 7, posted (12 years 2 months 2 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 2752 times:

NW will not order the A318, it is too heavy to operate in/out of airports that currently have DC-9 service. More than likely the 717 or the EMB-190/195 will be the replacement for the DC-9. An order for either will be a great boost for the 717, and a validation for Embraer's new design. The 717 makes sense because it has lineage to the DC-9 and now having been in service for almost 3 years, it has proven itself to be better than advertised. The fuel savings alone have helped AirTran stay profitable, and has actually sped up their DC-9 retirement plans. With the EMB-190/195 still a few years away from it's first flight, NW could get in on the ground floor and get a good deal on them, but I think they should wait until the EMB-170/175 does in service for Swiss and Lufthansa before deciding to commit to it's larger sibling. I think if Northwest were to place an order for say 100+ firm plus options for the 717, Boeing may give them a price as good as or even better than what AirTran is paying for them.

User currently offlineCerulean From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (12 years 2 months 2 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 2743 times:

If you replace an old type with a new type, surely it will LOOK like you will be reducing maintenance costs. However the trick is that it will take NW 5-10 years to replace 170 some niners from the first deliverey to last retirement. And during this transition period they will have the disadvantage of having yet another type in the fleet to maintain. The lower the number of types in your fleet, the lower your maintenance costs.

That's true. But what other options do you have?

You can't just overnight, dump 170 planes and the next day have 170 replacements on line and ready to go.

Not unless you want to slash your route network overnight by some 70%.

So that argument doesn't really hold. That transition is going to take place regardless of the type chosen as the replacement. Whether they go for 717's, A319's, RJ's, or DC-3's, it doesn't matter.

And as the OP stated, those planes HAVE to be retired eventually.



User currently offlineDCA-ROCguy From United States of America, joined Apr 2000, 4514 posts, RR: 34
Reply 9, posted (12 years 2 months 2 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 2666 times:

Buying the 717 might help NW in another way. As noted above, eventually the DC-9s will need to be retired, even if they are paid for. American will have a seat-capacity gap between 50 seats and 140 seats once it dumps the F100. And AA threw away a chance to get new 100-seat a/c with TWA's 717's.

This decision will put AA at a competitive disadvantage re medium size markets. AA's cost structure won't support multiple daily M80's at many of these markets, so ERJ-140's-145's are what they'll get. Folks here in Rochester, for example, are ticked that AA is downgrading us to all ERJ's. From the 1960's to the 1990's, 100-seat a/c (DC-9's, 732's, F100's) were a mainstay at medium-size markets. This capacity size is very important to these cities' ability to support mainline jet service.

Northwest has all these paid-for 100-seat DC-9's, which these cities obviously fill or NW wouldn't fly the planes here (ROC, BUF, SYR, GRB, GRR, ALB, and other Midwestern and Northeastern medium-size cities). AA is downgrading Upstate NY to ERJ's; rumors are that UA will downgrade us as well. That would leave Northwest as the *only* airline offering mainline westbound service in this region.

Add to that Northwest's beautiful new WorldGateway at DTW, and DTW's excellent runway layout that doesn't get congested easily--unlike ORD. Those things add up to a very good competitive picture for NW in the coming decade.

Keeping 100-seat a/c in its fleet--which the fuel-sipping 717 would allow NW to do--would allow NW to maintain an ongoing competitive advantage in many markets.

Jim






Need a new airline paint scheme? Better call Saul! (Bass that is)
User currently offline717fan From Switzerland, joined Nov 2001, 2017 posts, RR: 6
Reply 10, posted (12 years 2 months 2 weeks 4 hours ago) and read 2550 times:

By the way NWA said to me that they are considering the 717. That means nothing, only that the 717 IS NOT out of the race and that is good.

User currently offlineBrianhames From United States of America, joined Feb 2000, 795 posts, RR: 2
Reply 11, posted (12 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 hours ago) and read 2534 times:

I take back the JunkJets comment

Don't take it back, dude! Stand tall, don't crack under pressure!


User currently offlineQANTAS_767 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (12 years 2 months 2 weeks 1 hour ago) and read 2501 times:


I agree the DC-9s are JUNKJETS and need replacing FAST!!!!



QANTAS_767


User currently offlineBR715-A1-30 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 13, posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 2458 times:

Those Junkjets need to make their last flight to the desert soon. Time to join up with the other JunkJets. (Save the L1011. The L1011 never was Junk.)  Smile

User currently offlineMatt D From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 9502 posts, RR: 47
Reply 14, posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 2454 times:

How long will it be before some of the pilots on those "-9's" are older than the planes they are flying?

I'm sure they're reliable workhorses and all...but c'mon Northwest. You have to say goodbye sooner or later.


User currently offlineBH346 From United States of America, joined Jan 2000, 3265 posts, RR: 14
Reply 15, posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 2452 times:

I just flew on a refurbished DC-9-50 not too long ago and it was nice inside. I don't think the average passenger can tell it's old. However, these '9s won't last forever.


Northwest Airlines - Some People Just Know How to Fly
User currently offlineCerulean From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 16, posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 2443 times:

Here's a photo tribute to the Northwest DC-9's. As you can tell, they have quite a pedigree.

Unfortunately, I could not find any pictures of Air West (the step between Bonanza and Hughes Airwest).

feel free to add on.

Enjoy!


View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Mel Lawrence
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Photo © Brian J. Gore



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Photo © Henry Romero
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Photo © John P. Stewart



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Photo © Johan Ljungdahl
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Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © John P. Stewart



View Large View Medium
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Photo © John P. Stewart
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Photo © Don Boyd



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Photo © Frank Schaefer
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Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © James Richard Covington, Jr



User currently offlineBR715-A1-30 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 2431 times:

Quite a History there Cerulean. I hope they decide to order at least 100 717-251 Aircraft. I mean REAL Soon

User currently onlinePW100 From Netherlands, joined Jan 2002, 2557 posts, RR: 13
Reply 18, posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 2364 times:

Cerulean

That's true. But what other options do you have? . . . You can't just overnight, dump 170 planes and the next day have 170 replacements on line and ready to go . . . Not unless you want to slash your route network overnight by some 70% . . . So that argument doesn't really hold

You're right! But I'm afraid that I missed the nail in my previous post. That is, I put the nail in place, but did not hammer it in . . . Let me try again:

Off course it's going to be expensive to introduce an new type into your fleet, and a 170 ship fleet will take quite some time to replace. The point is that the longer you fly with your current fleet, the longer you can wait before incurring these replacement costs. Look at it this way: If you have a 170 ship fleet, you can roll it over to a new type every 30 years. But if you do this every 15 years, you'll have twice the roll-over costs! As long as average maintenance and fuel costs do not exceed the average roll-over costs, from a pure financial perspective you're better of with the old junkjets [as long as the pax don't expel them...].

PW100


PS. Considering NW reputation, why not replacing them with F100s? US has parked 40, AA is to retire 74, and TAM Brasil is also going to replace 50 [or what’s left of them...] Big grin



Immigration officer: "What's the purpose of your visit to the USA?" Spotter: "Shooting airliners with my Canon!"
User currently offlineNwa747-400 From United States of America, joined Sep 2000, 1337 posts, RR: 4
Reply 19, posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 2346 times:

Passengers don't expel the "old junk jets" because the average passenger has no idea that NW DC9s are 20-30+ years old because NW keeps them looking just like every other domestic airliner out there (if not better).

------------------------------------------
Now more than ever, FLY THE RED TAILS!!!


User currently offlineSllevin From United States of America, joined Jan 2002, 3376 posts, RR: 6
Reply 20, posted (12 years 2 months 1 week 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 2298 times:

It'll never happen.

NW has repeatedly said that the cost of operating the DC-9 fleet, despite maintenance, fuel, etc., is still less than the cost of the 717 with the large payments that the 717's will bring. There's no reason to believe that's an untrue statement, given the network the DC-9's fly.

Second of all, why do you believe spares are an issue? There are tons of DC-9's out there, and tons of planes that have been parked to pull spares from. Even NW's plans call for the DC-9 fleet to dwindle down to 100 aircraft, giving them 70 of their own spare aircraft to pull parts from.

Thus, any order is way off in the future; far too far to save the 717 line. Besides, for 100 aircraft, expect Airbus to offer an A318-SR variant that's lighter weight, shorter range, and will offer the common flightdeck and maintenance.

I would expect the 717 line to close within 36 months. Anything else makes little sense. Boeing would be better served building their own 737-600SR variant and dumping the odd bird out.

Steve


User currently offlineMaiznblu_757 From United States of America, joined Mar 2002, 5112 posts, RR: 50
Reply 21, posted (12 years 2 months 15 hours ago) and read 2218 times:

Northwest Airlines is replacing DC9-50's with A320's on some routes... Why not the A319/A320 to replace all DC9's?

User currently offlineSllevin From United States of America, joined Jan 2002, 3376 posts, RR: 6
Reply 22, posted (12 years 2 months 13 hours ago) and read 2181 times:

Maiz:

It *is* happening to some extent. That's what I meant when saying that NW was slowly reducing the "DC-9" role from 160+ aircraft to just 100.

The 717 makes little sense for NW. Airbus will build them a lightweight variant for 100 orders...

Steve


User currently offlineBR715-A1-30 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 23, posted (12 years 2 months 13 hours ago) and read 2173 times:

The A320 Family was not designed for "Lightweight" variants. The 717 would be more feasible to replace the DC9. Think about it. 717 has so much in common with the DC9 (I.E. Weight, RearMounted Engines, Wing, Landing Gear, and most other components.) The only thing that would cost money is pilot training, and that shouldn't be too hard since the DC9 flies like a 717.

User currently offlinePSU.DTW.SCE From United States of America, joined Jan 2002, 7708 posts, RR: 27
Reply 24, posted (12 years 2 months 13 hours ago) and read 2163 times:

The A319/A320 is too big for many DC-9 routes.

The A320 is actually a 727 replacement, with nearly equal number of seats.
A320 148 pax vs 727 149 pax and the A320 is able to do West Coast-DTW/MSP/MEM for NW.

The A319 works alright as a DC-9-50 replacement in term of pax number.
DC-9-50 125 pax vs A319 124 pax.
However, the DC-9-50's are the newest DC-9's in the NW fleet and the only make up about 50 of the 170 +/- DC-9 fleet. You have a lot of DC-9-10/30/40's that don't have an equal capacity replacement. Something will have to go between the 69 pax ARJ and the 124 pax A319.

Still lots of life in those good ole' 9's.


25 Post contains images BR715-A1-30 : For Northwest to keep those DC9s is like trying to keep an Ailing Granny on Life Support. If she wants to die, don't try and put on some makeup to mak
26 PSU.DTW.SCE : Wow, what a bunch of ignorance here. The DC-9's are in very good shape, they aren't on life support. BR715-A1-30, don't make up such stupid b.s. just
27 CV640 : The DC9s at Northwest are the most reliable of their narrow body fleet. So, using your logic they are more likely to replace the A319/320s and 757s fi
28 HlywdCatft : i was talking to a Jet bridge operator at DTW that works for NW. He and many others are hoping NW does NOT take the A318 because it will be a bear to
29 Post contains links and images Justplanesmart : Cerulean- Here's one of an Air West DC-9-30: View Large View MediumPhoto © John P. Stewart
30 Azjubilee : Hlywdctft = NW agents work Avros everyday and the jetbridge comes close to the engine in a lot of cities. Also, perhaps they should allow some Mesaba
31 Sllevin : Who said you can't build a lightweight A318/319 variant? That's silly. Of course you can. By limiting weights, you can lighten key components and ligh
32 Lowfareair : Steve: you are forgetting some points that Boeing has in their favor: 1) Discounts. NW would likely get some large discounts for being the first major
33 RayChuang : I think by 2004-2005, NW will be looking for a DC-9 replacement, mostly due to the fact the planes are getting way up there in terms of structural lif
34 Sllevin : Lowfareair: You're right that Boeing will push pricing, but I don't know that they will be able to push harder than AI or Embraer (both of which are a
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