Our 737-100s (all ex-LH and PE
) had the rear airstair that were built into the door. It was a weird looking contraption, and was activated by pulling a red handle through a horizontal track, and the door would flop down, and the stairs would unfold section by section. Last flight I took on one of those beasts was in '99 EWR
for a round of golf. The flight attendant at 2L was having a hard time opening the door up, and I went back and we tried our damndest to move that handle, but I guess it was jammed. Finally, the Captain (on 757s now), a good friend of mine, and former football player like myself, came back and all three of us pulled on the handle so hard that when it finally released, we were all thrown back into the 2R
doorway! Pretty funny experience, I think that was the last time they ever used that airstair, because we wrote it up as inop and, as they were only a few weeks from retirement, nobody ever bothered to replace it.
The newer models only had the airstair at 1L (folded into the belly), that setup was probably not even an option on the models after the -200. I'm sure the thing was pretty damn heavy!