elcapi1980
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4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Fri Dec 31, 2004 5:57 am

It is very rarely to see a regional jet with 4 engines nowadays ,therefore is it really economical to operate it or this plane was a mistake from the standpoint that has more engines to repair and maintain, any opinions,,,,
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EMBQA
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Fri Dec 31, 2004 5:58 am

The engine of choice was too weak just to use only 2
"It's not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog"
 
FriendlySkies
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Fri Dec 31, 2004 6:22 am

The 146/ARJ's 4 engines enable it to operate out of remote airports such as Aspen, CO. It is the only jet that can meet the engine-out requirements of the departure due to the mountains. And, as EMBQA said, with only two of those engines, it would never get off the ground.
 
2H4
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Fri Dec 31, 2004 6:34 am



Another possible benefit...the weather minimums for IFR departures are lower for 4-engined aircraft than for 2-engined aircraft. I don't know how beneficial this is in the real world, though, so perhaps someone more knowledgeable than myself can enlighten us.


2H4


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Starlionblue
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Fri Dec 31, 2004 6:39 am

Trivia: The engine cores are for the Avro engine actually started life as APUs for the 767.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
invicta
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Fri Dec 31, 2004 8:23 am

I seem to remember something about having four low power engines making it a very quiet plane.
 
stirling
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Fri Dec 31, 2004 9:38 am

Yes, that is correct, as 4 engines don't have to work as hard as two.

The engines as well, have seen life as the cores for helicopter engines.
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tnsaf
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Fri Dec 31, 2004 11:42 pm

The original 146 engines had a common core to the engines used in the Chinook helicopter I believe. The first version of the Challenger Biz Jet used this engine as well. To say the engine was a basket case in its early years would be an understatement. It almost destroyed both programs. That's one of the reasons the Challenger switched to the CF34.

You probably won't see a 4 engine regional airliner again. They are expensive to operate compared to a two engine aircraft of similar capability. I think that's one of the reasons the RJ-X program was cancelled, the new technology engines helped, but competing against similar sized aircraft like the ERJ-170/190 family the numbers just didn't work.

Yeah, the airplane has some operational capabilities that others can't match, like performance out of hot and high airfields, but that capability came at a price and hurt operating economics.
700 hours and counting...
 
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N328KF
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Fri Dec 31, 2004 11:49 pm

I just think it's cool how it looks like a mini-C-17.
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aeroweanie
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sat Jan 01, 2005 12:48 am

> Trivia: The engine cores are for the Avro engine actually started life as
> APUs for the 767.

No they didn't - Tnsaf is correct. The core of the ALF502 is the old T55 from the CH-47 Chinook.

The ALF502 started life as the engine for the Northrop A-9A ground attack aircraft and was adopted for the Canadair CL600 Challenger and the HS-146, which became the BAe-146. The leftover engines from the A-9A program were used on the NASA QSRA aircraft. The engine has always had an awful reputation. This is why Canadair put the CF34 on the CL601 Challenger. The ALF502s were made in the factory in Stratford Connecticut where the LTS101, LTP101, T55 and AGT1500 were manufactured. The factory is the same one where Sikorsky built the flying boats and Vought built the F4Us. It is now a government owned facility, operated by Avco Lycoming. The AGT1500 is used in the M1 tank and Lycoming fell way behind in deliverys in the early 1980s. The government threatened to take over the plant to get their engines, so Lycoming ignored everything but the AGT1500 to save their necks. At one point, they delivered something like 20% of the engines that they were supposed to deliver to Canadair and then 90% of these were rejected on quality grounds. At the same time, Aerospatiale had over 100 AS350 helicopters in storage, lacking LTS101 engines. LTP101 and LTS101 production was eventually moved to Williamsport Pennsylvania.

I talked to some AirCal mechanics about the BAe-146 and they told me some real horror stories about the engines. They were having to change them very frequently.
 
sabenapilot
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sat Jan 01, 2005 1:22 am

It is right that at least the original versions of the BAe146 engines, the ALF502, were not of the highest reliability to say the least, but the Avro RJ has ALF507F, which have an acceptable reliability nowadays.

It still is not what a CFM56 can offer, but the ALF507F engines don't cost as much as other jet engines either and if they are well pampered and embedded in a close maintenance program, the dispatch reliability of the RJs does not suffer from its engines.

Because the engines need to be overhauled more frequently then any other modern engine, BAe has developed a special leasing system to which most airlines operating the BAe146 or the Avro RJ have subscribed: no matter whether they own or lease the planes they operate, most of them simply rent and pay their engines per flight hour. The idea basically is: having some problems with an engine? No problem, just give us a call, take it of the wing and send it over, we'll send you another one in the mean time at no extra cost! Large operators of the RJ like SN, BA or LH even have some spare engines in stock and they are frequently being used....

You can see this for instance because SN has changed livery from dark blue engine nacelles (Sabena style) to light blue nacelles (SN Brussels Airlines) and you can easily see it when an engine has been retrofitted (if it is not of the same colour that is....).

Look at what a remarkably high number of planes flying with a differently coloured nacelle I could find after a brief look at the date base (all different planes BTW):


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Photo © Darren Wilson




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Photo © Praguepix




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Photo © Ralf Meyermann




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Photo © Alan Lebeda




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Photo © Robin Zartos




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Photo © Botterman Bram




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Photo © Tommy Desmet - Brussels Aviation Photography




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Photo © Tommy Desmet - Brussels Aviation Photography



There's even one in the database with 2 recently installed new engines:


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Photo © Tomas Galla



All pictures are less than 3 months old...
Forunately for this and other airlines operating this type of plane, they do not have to cover the costs of this frequent preventive changing of engines! 



[Edited 2004-12-31 17:27:10]
 
tnsaf
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sat Jan 01, 2005 3:29 am

Sabena Pilot,
Great info. BAE must be taking a bath on this then just to keep the aircraft flying, or is it Honeywell? It has got to be hassle for the airline to schedule the engine changes too. It all costs money!
700 hours and counting...
 
sabenapilot
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sat Jan 01, 2005 4:35 am

Tnsaf,

In don't know who is taking the bath, BAe or Honeywell, but it sure isn't the airline operating the Avro RJs...

In fact the system is very interesting for airlines, because it guarantees them fantastic technical support, immediate replacement whenever and wherever they need it and it eliminates any financial risk from operating the engines for a very reasonable fixed hourly leasing rate.

Obviously for smaller airlines, the rather frequent changing of engines can be a bit of a problem to their daily operations, but for airlines with an in-house technical department like SN, LH, BA or NW, there isn't much hassle in it, it is just some getting used to, that's all. Statistically, if you know you will permanently have one of your planes in the hangar for an unscheduled engine change, there isn't much 'surprise' about it, is there? And you can easily offset the cost of this by asking for adapted leasing terms, which is what the airlines did. Hence the fact that only last summer SN decided, despite the high maintenance costs and the much higher fuel consumption, it is still undoubtedly the cheapest 100 seater to operate, purely because of the low leasing rates on airframes and engines.

I don't think however that the BAe146 (or the more modern Avro RJ) will have any chance of a second carrier in South America or Africa once they will disappear from the European or American skies, simply because of their need for a very thorough and strict maintenance program.

[Edited 2004-12-31 20:46:57]
 
Planesmart
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sat Jan 01, 2005 5:27 am

The ALF50X power by the hour deal is not unique, and not just in the civil market.

RR were the first to offer this option on the Spey in the 70's.
 
OPNLguy
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sat Jan 01, 2005 6:10 am

>>>To say the engine was a basket case in its early years would be an understatement.

This was the genesis behind a couple of wisecracks about the 146 way back when...

1/ What does BAE stand for? Bring Another Engine...

2/ Why does the 146 have 4 engines? Two to get you there; two to get you back...

About the only benefit I could see with the 146 was being able to use a max 2-hour takeoff alternate versus a max 1-hour takeoff alternate that a twin entails. I'm sure that came in really handy for the PSA folks when everything in California was fogged in...
ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
 
Planesmart
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sat Jan 01, 2005 6:57 am

Plenty of jokes about these engines / planes, and many well deserved, but popular with airport residents (quiet, STOL, no reverse thrust), and pilots (little plane with 4x engines & STOL performance).

Lots of component upgrades to improve serviceability over the years, but always hard to lose a reputation. And crews keen to enjoy STOL performance, even when not necessary didn't help.

As raised recently in other threads, there were ways to extend engine life like resting inflight and taxiing on 2.

The 757 equivalent for it's size, so great for flight crew and passengers.
 
mtnmanmakalu
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sat Jan 01, 2005 9:32 am

I fly this A/C quite a bit on my commute to base, and it is a nice, little A/C that feels like a much bigger jet...

It is very quiet (except for the landing gear retracting- sounds like the bottom of the A/C is coming apart!), and comfortable...

I heard a rumour that it was designed with 4 engines originally for the Queen of England to fly in for safety- Anybody else ever heard this???

Happy New Year....
I do, I don't, whatever.......
 
EMBQA
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sat Jan 01, 2005 9:59 am

1/ What does BAE stand for? Bring Another Engine...

2/ Why does the 146 have 4 engines? Two to get you there; two to get you back...


OPNLguy... Ah the memorys...!!! I have not heard those two since we turned back our Avro RJ70's years ago.
"It's not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog"
 
OPNLguy
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sat Jan 01, 2005 10:04 am

I had an uncle who used to work at the Lycoming plant there in the Williamsport/Montoursville PA area, and you should have heard the ones I -didn't- list...  Big grin

Have a Happy New Year...
ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
 
BMED
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sat Jan 01, 2005 10:13 am

It just looks fab with four engines. Even better in NW new colours!!
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GulfstreamGuy
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sat Jan 01, 2005 10:29 am

I remember a Mesaba pilot told me one time that the British designed the BAe146 for the Queen. Stating that the Queen was forbidden to fly in any aircraft that did not have 4 engines! OK, I fell for it for awhile! Big grin

GulfstreamGuy
"If we couldn't laugh, we would all go insane. " -Jimmy Buffett
 
skidmarks
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sat Jan 01, 2005 10:35 am

The 146/RJ is a 1960's design which has worked extremely well. It is quiet, safe and fairly reliable. We use about 25 of them and they are in use constantly. A good aeroplane, unfortunately, as with any British aeroplane, over-engineered and labour intensive.
But, it is quiet, efficient and works, don't knock it.

Happy New Year
Growing old is compulsory, growing up is optional
 
skidmarks
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sat Jan 01, 2005 10:36 am

Oh yes, and Queens Flight do use them for their 4-engined reliability. Even if Charlie boy does try and crash them now and then!
Growing old is compulsory, growing up is optional
 
SNATH
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sat Jan 01, 2005 9:15 pm

Slightly off-topic, but if you ever wondered what an 146/ARJ would look like
with two engines, look no further than this:


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Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Dmitry Karpezo
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Dmitry Karpezo



I'm also a big fan of 146/ARJs, as long as they have a 2-3 seat config. I was
in a LH one a couple of days ago which had a 3-3 seat config and, I'm telling
you, it was pretty crammed.

Tony
Nikon: we don't want more pixels, we want better pixels.
 
GDB
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sun Jan 02, 2005 1:14 am

Same old misconceptions.....
HS-146, later BAe-146, was designed for the expected boom in city centre STOL ports, where a fairly short take off and very quiet operation were needed.
Think of it as a growth Dash-7, HS/BAe were not the only ones working towards this at the time.
So considering this market did not really emerge, I'd say the aircraft sold pretty well.

At the time, the engine chosen was the only fairly off the shelf powerplant available, then in 1983, PSA needed an aircraft to operate out of some very noise restricted airports in CA, so they ordered BAe-146s, this also gave the programme a much needed boost.

As to this notion that it was designed for the Queen's Flight with 4 engine safety in mind, please, how does this sound? Like something from a Hollywood scriptwriter's mind perhaps?
These aircraft were not even delivered to the RAF until 1986/7, several years after service entry, though a company BAe-146-100 was evaluated before that.

Had BAe built the upgraded BAC-1-11-700 instead, that would have replaced the HS-748's of this flight, in fact, if engine numbers were a consideration, why buy HS-748's in the first place? Why not Vickers Vanguards or just retain Viscounts?
 
2H4
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sun Jan 02, 2005 2:06 am

Funny how this photo was taken on the same day this thread was started...

 Smile


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Photo © Stewart Andrew





2H4
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bohica
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sun Jan 02, 2005 2:17 am

IIRC the 146 was originally designed to be a twin engine A/C. However the CFM/IAE engines were not yet available so BAE had to settle for 4 engines and selected the Lycomings because they were available.

BTW the loudest part of the flight is when the flaps move. Especially if you're in the back.

Another running joke about the 146 is that it is called the "Quiet Neighbor." That's because all the noise was inside. Big grin
 
GDB
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sun Jan 02, 2005 2:46 am

I don't recall CFM-56 ever being considered for 146, that engine is far too big for a start.

BAe did look at a more radically upgraded 146/RJ in the early 1990's, not CFM s though, had they built it assuming it entered service in 1996-98, it could well have been a big seller, but asking BAe/BAE to do sensible things like that in recent times is a pipe dream.

Though the 'Queen is only allowed to fly the 146 due to 4 engines' was a joke told by that pilot another poster mentioned, believe me, I've heard people believing it!
It's the aviation version of that story about a ground of US tourists on a coach around the Windsor area, when the guide says 'the Magna Cartar was signed here at Runnymead in 1245' one of tourists says to his wife 'gee honey, we damn well missed it by 20 minutes.'
 
JayDavis
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sun Jan 02, 2005 2:50 am

I worked for Aspen Air in Lubbock for a very short time during the end of my college career and I loved that aircraft. It was so cool driving the jetway up to it, as LBB as far as I am aware, was the first airport that put a jetway up to it.

Great airplane to fly also, the pilots said they felt like they were flying a fighter plane.............sure would like to see more of them.

Aspen operated them in a 2-3 configuration with 86 pax capacity, I believe.


Jay
 
BMED
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sun Jan 02, 2005 3:02 am

Isn't it just to keep the cost down from having to re design the whole a/c so that 146 operators can keep costs down and reduce training and maintance costs.

It just would not be the same with 4 engines.
Living the jetset life! No better way to be
 
Planesmart
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sun Jan 02, 2005 3:09 am

GDB

'I don't recall CFM-56 ever being considered for 146, that engine is far too big for a start.'

The 146 had a very long gestation period, although the basic appearance didn't change greatly.

An earlier powerplant option was the engines from the VFW614, uprated for the 146. The VFW fell thru, so the power upgrade was delayed.

Pilots, passengers and airport neighbours loved them.
 
GDB
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sun Jan 02, 2005 5:08 am

You're right, the RR/Snecma M45, a version of an engine core originally designed for the abortive AFVG fighter project.
But, on the VFW-614 this engine proved to be very expensive to maintain, so despite the not brilliant reputation of the engine eventually selected for the BAe-146, the right choice was made, bearing in mind the designers had little in the choice of engines at the time.

The 1990's upgrade if built, would have featured two RR/BMW engines.

The original HS-146 project was axed in 1973, fallout from the severe economic crisis of the time, re-launched in 1978 as the BAe-146 (the HP Jetstream was re-launched as the J31 at the same time), first flew in 1981, in service 1982.

Noteworthy that London City Airport is one of the few places that actually appeared as the original designers had envisaged.
 
tnsaf
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sun Jan 02, 2005 6:19 am

Sabenapilot,
It sounds like BAe is taking the hit here. They recognize the airplane is expensive to operate, so they lower the lease rate on the aircraft to keep them flying. I think a few years ago BAe wrote off a lot of the value of their portfolio of aircraft in an accounting exercise. This gives them the freedom to be very flexible on their lease rates, earning at least some return from their assets.
700 hours and counting...
 
OHLHD
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sun Jan 02, 2005 8:45 pm

A little off topic but.....,

I hope somebody can help with my question:

Around 1991 a (U.K.)?? carrier operated LGW-VIE with a BAe 146.

I have totally forgotten who that was. Can anybody tell me which carrier that was.

THANKS

 
Aviation
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sun Jan 02, 2005 10:35 pm

I like to think of it this way with the 4 engines if one goes you still have 3 more left and only loose a 1/4 of your power where as if you have only 2 and one goes you only have 1/2 of your original power.
Meaning you can have smaller engines for incase one goes

My final thought is that I think the manufacturer has done this for the safety issue also a smaller engine is cheaper to fix replace even though there is 4 of them I belive the cons are outweighed by pros and was there not a big thing about a/c safety happening around the time the realese of the RJ was happening? Fill me in...

Thanks,
Aaron J Nicoli
Signed, Aaron Nicoli - Trans World Airlines Collector
 
Capital146
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Sun Jan 02, 2005 11:42 pm

Around 1991 a (U.K.)?? carrier operated LGW-VIE with a BAe 146.

I have totally forgotten who that was. Can anybody tell me which carrier that was.


It will have been Dan Air.


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GDB
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Mon Jan 03, 2005 2:48 am

Aviation, already explained really, to re-cap, the engine was the only one available at the time that could deliver the very quiet operation for the then plan that the 146 would be operating from city centre STOL ports.
 
XFSUgimpLB41X
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Mon Jan 03, 2005 3:45 am

Anybody know why they put 4 engines on the Bae/ARJ??

Well..the wing wasn't big enough to hold 6.


We always joke about outclimbing them out of DTW... not uncommon for us to be using a very reduced power takeoff and still be able to see the top of the wing of the previously departing ARJ... It's equipped with 4 APU's and a hairdryer, as they say.  Smile


All joking aside- probably the smoothest landing airplane around outside of the 747...and very comfy on the inside. Plus it has 4 engines..and that always looks dang cool.
Chicks dig winglets.
 
future757
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Mon Jan 03, 2005 4:28 am

I'm sure there is many good thing about this plane, but I think it looks so undeserving, a little flying blimp with 4 engines and a tail and wings. I just think it looks rather awkward. Just my two cents worth.
 
airways6max
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Mon Jan 03, 2005 5:56 am

I think that putting four engines on the Avro RJ was a mistake as it made the type expensive to operate and uneconomical. Probably one reason why it didn't sell very well. The Avro RJ was designed back in the 1970s, when BAe was government-owned and it is one more testament to why Socialism is a failure.
 
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KaiGywer
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Mon Jan 03, 2005 9:32 am

BMED wrote:
It just looks fab with four engines. Even better in NW new colours!!

Does that mean that XJ finally painted one?
“Once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, an
 
azjubilee
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Mon Jan 03, 2005 9:37 am

No - XJ has not painted any of their planes yet. I've heard the program has been delayed AGAIN.

XFSU - We climb like pigs when we're heavy - not to mention we do deeply reduced thrust takeoffs now (FLEX) which adds to the sluggishness. When it's hot, its even worse. JUst remember our weight to thrust ratio and then compare yours.


AZJ
 
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KaiGywer
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Mon Jan 03, 2005 10:32 am

AZJ, thanks. I really miss working at XJ. But who knows, once I move to Mpls, I might start there again  Smile XJ must be the easiest airline to get a job with, constantly hiring new people, I'm sure I'd get a job with the experience I have  Smile
“Once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, an
 
azjubilee
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Wed Jan 12, 2005 12:46 am

Update on the paint - the first saab is in the paintshop right now in Greenville, MS. Ship 106 will be sporting the new NWA livery. It sounds like 1 month to follow 106 into the new colors. The silver bullets will also be painted. The company now says there is no timeframe for the avros! I wish they'd make up their minds.


AZJ
 
GDB
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RE: 4 Engines In The Avro RJ- Question?

Wed Jan 12, 2005 3:26 am

A failure of socialism? Huh? That's odd considering it was originally launched (and cancelled) when the Conservatives were in power!
That was the economic shock of the 1973/4 oil crisis though, when things generally improved, it was back.
A left of centre Labour government did re-launch both the 146 and the J31 in 1978, they both sold well through the 1980's, as was intended.
BAe had too much of a military portfolio then, civil designs were either out of production or soon would be.
Some of you over that side of the pond really have to bring your own, often very ill informed, obsessions into everything?
Was the then state UK airline ever pressured to buy them? No.

As explained several times, (is everything that did not happen recently beyond the comprehension of some?) it was designed for the expected boom in city centre STOLports, like the Dash-7, like some others that never made it to production at the time.
No other engine available at that time offered the combination of low noise and performance out of shorter fields.
Considering the STOLports never really happened, the BAe product had a long and pretty successful run.

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