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Oldest 747-400 Still Flying?  
User currently offlineReadytotaxi From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2006, 3357 posts, RR: 2
Posted (6 years 3 months 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 8775 times:

I see that Wikipedia says the first plane was delivered Jan 26 1989 to NorthWest, almost 20 years ago, who is operating the oldest model, pax or freight? TIA.


you don't get a second chance to make a first impression!
31 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlinePhilSquares From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (6 years 3 months 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 8771 times:



Quoting Readytotaxi (Thread starter):
I see that Wikipedia says the first plane was delivered Jan 26 1989 to NorthWest, almost 20 years ago, who is operating the oldest model, pax or freight? TIA.

You answered your own question. NW is operating the first 747-400 (N603US) in the original pax configuration.


User currently offlineMarquis From Germany, joined Sep 2005, 274 posts, RR: 1
Reply 2, posted (6 years 3 months 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 8763 times:

PAX:

Northwest Airlines
747-451
N662US
Serial: 23720
CN: 708
First Flight: 21/09/1988
Delivery Date: 13/03/1989

This is the oldest one in service, although sistership N661US was build earlier, had it first flight some months earlier but was delivered later than N662US to NW.

CARGO:

Korean Air Cargo
747-4B5 F
HL7606
Serial: 24199
CN: 739
First Flight: 15/07/1989
Delivery: 28/07/1989 (hey, on my 2nd birthday!)



Riding the radials...
User currently offlineReadytotaxi From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2006, 3357 posts, RR: 2
Reply 3, posted (6 years 3 months 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 8731 times:



Quoting PhilSquares (Reply 1):

Thanks for that.



you don't get a second chance to make a first impression!
User currently offlinePhilSquares From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 4, posted (6 years 3 months 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 8722 times:



Quoting PhilSquares (Reply 1):
You answered your own question. NW is operating the first 747-400 (N603US) in the original pax configuration.

Sorry, gave you the wrong info. It's actually N661US which was CN 23719 Line number 696 original N number was N401PW.


User currently offlineHypersonic From United Kingdom, joined Oct 2005, 149 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (6 years 3 months 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 8651 times:

On searching the photo database on aircraft:
N662US
It reveals that this early bird has a glass cockpit.
When it was it built in 1988 then delivered in 1989 did it have this config, thus being really cutting edge, for the time, or did it have an analogue flight deck initially, then retrofitted with a glass one?

Cheers


User currently offlineAirbuster From Netherlands, joined Mar 2007, 454 posts, RR: 1
Reply 6, posted (6 years 3 months 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 8625 times:



Quoting Hypersonic (Reply 5):
or did it have an analogue flight deck initially, then retrofitted with a glass one?

The 747-400 series has always had the same flight deck, only modification that took place over the last 20 years was changing from CRT's to LCD's and that's basically it. It was high tech and still is, the A320/MD11/F100 all are from the same period and also very technically advanced. By 1989 the analogue age was somewhat.

The 757/767 series were designed in the early 80's with first flight in 1982 and also had CRT screens making it a semi glass cockpit.

rgds

AB



FLY FOKKER JET LINE!
User currently offlineTristarSteve From Sweden, joined Nov 2005, 4064 posts, RR: 33
Reply 7, posted (6 years 3 months 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 8576 times:



Quoting Hypersonic (Reply 5):
When it was it built in 1988 then delivered in 1989 did it have this config, thus being really cutting edge

Thanks for that. Really made me chuckle. The B747-400 came 2 years after the A320. A B744 may have a nice glass cockpit and a CMC, but all the controls (except the flaps, and the engines) are about the same as the old B742. The aircraft is full of steel cables and pulleys. Even the B757 which came 6 years earlier had fly by wire spoilers.


User currently offlineIsitsafenow From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 4984 posts, RR: 23
Reply 8, posted (6 years 3 months 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 8540 times:

N663US was in service ny NW in Feb of 89 on the MSP-PHX run before going international.
I was on it in mid Feb of that year to PHX.
safe



If two people agree on EVERYTHING, then one isn't necessary.
User currently offlinePhilSquares From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 9, posted (6 years 3 months 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 8535 times:



Quoting Isitsafenow (Reply 8):
N663US was in service ny NW in Feb of 89 on the MSP-PHX run before going international.
I was on it in mid Feb of that year to PHX.

Yes, but N661US was the test airframe for certification and the first 400 off the line.

Quoting TristarSteve (Reply 7):
A B744 may have a nice glass cockpit and a CMC, but all the controls (except the flaps, and the engines) are about the same as the old B742. The

Remember, the airlines had a major say in the development of the 400. IIRC, some fly by wire was offered but no airline thought it was an option they wanted pursued. The LE devices on the 400 are different than the 200.


User currently offlineIsitsafenow From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 4984 posts, RR: 23
Reply 10, posted (6 years 3 months 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 8510 times:



Quoting PhilSquares (Reply 9):
Yes, but N661US was the test airframe for certification and the first 400 off the line.

According to the Boeing book, I do believe you are correct. I would make a hefty wager that N663US has more hours as well as cylces on it than 661 or perhaps 662. I know NW received 663 in January of 89 and didnt get 661 until Dec of 89......662 went to NW in Mar of 89.
Additons stats show that 661 was first flown, by Boeing, in April of 88, 662 first flown in Sept 88 and 663 first flown Dec of 88.
Problem is we are messin with three dates here....first flown, delivered, and put in service to carry pax. As the above paragraph shows, they are not in the order you may expect.
safe



If two people agree on EVERYTHING, then one isn't necessary.
User currently offlineTheSonntag From Germany, joined Jun 2005, 3760 posts, RR: 29
Reply 11, posted (6 years 3 months 5 days ago) and read 8440 times:



Quoting TristarSteve (Reply 7):
A B744 may have a nice glass cockpit and a CMC, but all the controls (except the flaps, and the engines) are about the same as the old B742. The aircraft is full of steel cables and pulleys. Even the B757 which came 6 years earlier had fly by wire spoilers.

True, but it has a MUCH better safety record than its predecessors, showing that the glass cockpit alone did help safety (I know this is a bold statement, as many accidents of the B747 classics were caused by terror, maintenance and crew errors, but certainly the safety record of the B747-400 is impressive) a lot, so rebuilding the entire airplane to include FBW would not only have made it impossible for Boeing to bring the airplane that fast, but from a todays perspective I think that this decision certainly did make sense.


User currently offlineReadytotaxi From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2006, 3357 posts, RR: 2
Reply 12, posted (6 years 3 months 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 8255 times:

Okay, so the first is still flying, how many more years service does it have to offer?
Just a ball park figure.



you don't get a second chance to make a first impression!
User currently offlinePhilSquares From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 13, posted (6 years 3 months 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 8237 times:



Quoting Readytotaxi (Reply 12):
Okay, so the first is still flying, how many more years service does it have to offer?
Just a ball park figure.

Depends on what you want to do. It probably has one more D check left in it for it to continue as a pax aircraft. However, if someone wanted to convert it to a BCF, then there's plenty of life left for the aircraft. It really depends on how much someone (NW/DL) want to spend on the aircraft. Just look at some of the older 747-200s that are still flying around.


User currently offlineReadytotaxi From United Kingdom, joined Dec 2006, 3357 posts, RR: 2
Reply 14, posted (6 years 3 months 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 8230 times:



Quoting PhilSquares (Reply 13):

Thank you.  Smile



you don't get a second chance to make a first impression!
User currently offlineBabaero From Philippines, joined Jan 2002, 468 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (6 years 3 months 3 days 16 hours ago) and read 8081 times:

CX still have B-HOO and B-HOP. I believe HOO was another one of the original Boeing test aircraft, with B-HOP being delievered before B-HOO

Currently she is on close to 94000hrs and over 15550 cyc


User currently offlineAirbuske From United States of America, joined Jun 2007, 466 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (6 years 3 months 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 7983 times:

N661US : Date of MFG 08-DEC-89
N662US : Date of MFG 13-MAR-89
N663US : Date of MFG 26-JAN-89

So it is N663US.


User currently offlinePhilSquares From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (6 years 3 months 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 7977 times:



Quoting Airbuske (Reply 16):
N661US : Date of MFG 08-DEC-89
N662US : Date of MFG 13-MAR-89
N663US : Date of MFG 26-JAN-89

You realise you are using the delivery dates?

The date of MFG for N661US, LN696 is 29/4/1988 with a 8/12/1989 delivery date. IIRC, that aircraft was returned to Boeing for substantial re-wiring due to a production/design error.


User currently offlineAirbuske From United States of America, joined Jun 2007, 466 posts, RR: 0
Reply 18, posted (6 years 3 months 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 7965 times:



Quoting PhilSquares (Reply 17):
You realise you are using the delivery dates?

Hmm.. true. You certainly do have a point because

N661US is LN696
N662US is LN708
N663US is LN715

So both N661US and N662US were manufactured before N663US, but delivered after.


User currently offlineIsitsafenow From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 4984 posts, RR: 23
Reply 19, posted (6 years 3 months 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 7949 times:

N661US : Date of MFG 08-DEC-89
N662US : Date of MFG 13-MAR-89
N663US : Date of MFG 26-JAN-89[/quote]
My Boeing production book does NOT agree with the above.
661 was off the line in late 88. 663 was IN SERVICE flying pax in Mid Feb of 89.
Are you using th NWA Fleet Information Register?
Its about 95-98 percent accurate.
In the case of 661 mfg date, its wrong.
safe



If two people agree on EVERYTHING, then one isn't necessary.
User currently offlinePhilSquares From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 20, posted (6 years 3 months 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 7921 times:



Quoting Isitsafenow (Reply 19):
N661US : Date of MFG 08-DEC-89
N662US : Date of MFG 13-MAR-89
N663US : Date of MFG 26-JAN-89

My Boeing production book does NOT agree with the above.
661 was off the line in late 88. 663 was IN SERVICE flying pax in Mid Feb of 89.
Are you using th NWA Fleet Information Register?
Its about 95-98 percent accurate.
In the case of 661 mfg date, its wrong.
safe[/quote]

Again, I stand by my data. Your are wrong. Again, you are using delivery date as the MFG date which is incorrect. As I mentioned in a previous post, N661US was taken back to Boeing after the test program was completed and the type certificate issued. It took almost 11 months to reconfigure the aircraft from a test platform to a passenger aircraft.

N663US is CN23818 and LN 715 Date of MFG 8 Dec 1988 and Delivery date of 26 Jan 1989
N661US is CN23719 and LN 696 Date of MFG 28 Apr 1988 and Delivery date 8 Dec 1989

Don't know what else I can write, but my numbers correspond to several data bases and I was at NW at the time and involved in the 747-400 program.


User currently offlineIsitsafenow From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 4984 posts, RR: 23
Reply 21, posted (6 years 3 months 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 7878 times:



Quoting PhilSquares (Reply 20):
N661US : Date of MFG 08-DEC-89



Quoting PhilSquares (Reply 20):
Delivery date 8 Dec 1989

I think you answered your own q
OR
this is contradicting.
According to the manufacturers book, the mfg date and the delivery date is not the same for 661.
Anyone who is a member of A net that works at Everett can vouch that is something that cannot happen.

I do believe the plane came off the line a second time as you are hinting. Boeing says that the first 400, and eventually N661US for NW, came off the line in APRIL OF 1988.
Thats my point....and my only point. Dont put more into it. Its confusing enough with a first flown date, manufactured date, and a delivery date. This one is MORE confusing because Boeing kept the bird around a while, like eight months, for good reasons before it sold it to NW in Dec in 89.

I found it!!
At the Boeing store in Everett in the mid 90's, they were selling a commemorative key chain.
On one side it says Premiere JANUARY 26,1988 BOEING 737-400 Renton, Washington
On the OTHER side it says Premiere JANUARY 26, 1988 BOEING 747-400 Everett, Washington.
Apparently both planes were rolled out the same day at different plants.

hhmmmmmmm
This seems to contradict everything...........
Anyone at Boeing remember this?

As for you being personally involved, I hope we mean someday so you can tell me about the 400 development first-hand. I plan on being at the show at Boeing Field in Seattle Oct 11th.
Hopefully you will too.

safe



If two people agree on EVERYTHING, then one isn't necessary.
User currently offlineViscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 25978 posts, RR: 22
Reply 22, posted (6 years 3 months 2 days 19 hours ago) and read 7834 times:



Quoting Airbuske (Reply 18):
So both N661US and N662US were manufactured before N663US, but delivered after.

One of the more extreme examples of that is probably the first 777 built. It made its first flight June 12, 1994 but didn't go into airline service until more than 6 years later when it was refurbished and sold to CX on December 6, 2000.


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User currently offlinePhilSquares From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 23, posted (6 years 3 months 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 7805 times:



Quoting Isitsafenow (Reply 21):


Quoting PhilSquares (Reply 20):
N661US : Date of MFG 08-DEC-89



Quoting PhilSquares (Reply 20):
Delivery date 8 Dec 1989

I think you answered your own q

No. You are quoting a quote I put for someone else. N661US is MSN 696 which was rolled out on 28 April 1988 and entered the certification program for the 747-400 type certificate. It was then brought back to Boeing to be re-worked and then delivered to NW on 8 Dec 1989. There is no contradiction there only a typo with the quotes on my part. There is no contradiction.

Won't be at Boeing this year.....work..


User currently offlineEx52tech From United States of America, joined Dec 2006, 559 posts, RR: 1
Reply 24, posted (6 years 3 months 2 days 4 hours ago) and read 7731 times:



Quoting PhilSquares (Reply 20):
N663US is CN23818 and LN 715 Date of MFG 8 Dec 1988 and Delivery date of 26 Jan 1989
N661US is CN23719 and LN 696 Date of MFG 28 Apr 1988 and Delivery date 8 Dec 1989

Don't know what else I can write, but my numbers correspond to several data bases and I was at NW at the time and involved in the 747-400 program.

I agree.

I worked preflight and delivery for Boeing from Jan 89 to early may of 89. (went to NW in may of 89).

661 was used to certify the P&W 4056 engines, and conduct the early test flights, but you guys already know all that. We delivered 663 before 661 because 661 had to have all the test equipment and test wiring (orange wire bundles) removed, and then be reconfigured for pax service.

All that reconfiguration work was done outside by the "change in corporation crews". They finished up what could not be finished in the factory building over in preflight and delivery area. Even those of us that were in preflight and delivery were doing a lot of the modifications that were coming down from engineering, while in the process of delivering the airplane to the customer.

When I got there they were done with all the test flight work, and the three test birds were parked together on the west side of the paint hangar, waiting to get reconfigured. As I recall the RR powered 744 had this teal green paint, or coating on the skin, it was not a regular primer, really high gloss. It must have been something new they were testing, no marking on it at all, just this high gloss teal green.........strange looking.

Quoting TristarSteve (Reply 7):
but all the controls (except the flaps, and the engines) are about the same as the old B742. The aircraft is full of steel cables and pulleys. Even the B757 which came 6 years earlier had fly by wire spoilers

 grumpy  Something wrong with steel cables and pulleys?????????????? Takes a real mechanic to rig the flight controls on a 744, not someone just pushing a button on the MCDU.



"Saddest thing I ever witnessed....an airplane being scrapped"
25 Airbuske : Yes. But I agree with Phil Squares about his info. Wow that is extreme. Any reason to as why Boeing eventually sold it? (Other than they had finished
26 KingAir200 : Do they even print those anymore?
27 Airbuske : Yes they do. It is updated and printed quarterly. The one I was looking at was for the third quarter (effective July 1, 2008).
28 TristarSteve : yes I agree. Back in 1980 I was changing cables and rigging them on B737-200, but now 30 years later I prefer pushing buttons on the A320 and B777. I
29 Viscount724 : Yes still with CX. The 2nd photo in Reply 22 is dated May 2008.
30 Isitsafenow : I dont know..I would get mine from an employee but he retired in '05. safe
31 Airbuske : Thanks. I'll add this to my 'aviation trivia'.
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