Commercial Aircraft Designs - Too Boring?

Fri May 19, 2000 2:01 am

I certainly don't mean to offend any engineers out there, but don't you think all commercial jets are beginning to look the same, save for the 717. I live in Seattle and work in Renton. Everyday I drive by Boeing field and often have lunch in a parking lot at the end of the runway in Renton. All these newer planes, 90's on, seem to just be slightly different versions of themselves on the outside. What happened to designing planes that were asthetically pleasing as well as highly functional. The 747 comes to mind, what an amazing looking aircraft! It is art! The constellation was beautiful, DC-3 is gorgeous, even the 727 was unique in its look. Now it seems to me that all the newer aircraft, 737s, Airbus, 757, 777, though highly functional, just don't have that artistic quality about them that makes so many people fall in love with aviation in the first place. Am I just being too picky or does anyone else share this view. BTW, thanks for the tips on upgrading! I'm going to try a few of them!  
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RE: Commercial Aircraft Designs - Too Boring?

Fri May 19, 2000 3:14 am

I for one don't think you are being too picky but what else can they do design wise? A tube is a tube, which is basically what an airplane is, unfortunately. Who was the airline maker that was fooling around with the all wing design many years back? The airplane looked like a big that might be interesting!
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RE: Commercial Aircraft Designs - Too Boring?

Fri May 19, 2000 3:35 am

A few years back, McDonnell Douglas was designing a "prop fan" aircraft that was basically an MD80 with rear mounted engines and a "propeller" on the back. One major concern was that the flying public would not be too keen on "reverting" back to "prop planes" at this point in time. It would have provided for a bit of an unusual look, though.
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RE: Commercial Aircraft Designs - Too Boring?

Fri May 19, 2000 4:54 am

Several flying wing designs come to mind, both civil and military.

On the civil side, perhaps you were thinking about the huge pre-war Junkers G-38, which was essentially a flying wing with a short, stubby fuselage. Passengers sat in the fuselage or in the wing; the views from the latter must have been spectacular!

In the late 1970s, McDonnel Douglas conceived of a freighter that would carry cargo in its thick wings; the beast was to have been powered by six high-bypass turbofans mounted in pods above the wing. Not to be outdone, Boeing had come up with a nuclear-powered passenger jet featuring windows along the huge wing's leading edge. My 1980-vintage Illustrated Encyclopedia of Commercial Aircraft gives pictures but no model numbers for either design.

Jack Northrop experimented with flying wing bombers long before the B-2 stealth: the huge piston-engined XB-35 and its jet-powered counterpart, the YB-49. While both designs were highly capable (notwithstanding the XB-35's tempermental engines, which were prone to overheating), the US Air Force opted for more conventional designs, the Convair B-36 and the Boeing B-47. On a smaller scale were the Westland Pterodactyl and the Armstrong Whitworth AW.52G.
The aeroplane has unveiled for us the true face of the earth. -Antoine de Saint-Exupery
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RE: Commercial Aircraft Designs - Too Boring?

Fri May 19, 2000 10:52 am

Here is an idea for Boeing on a 737 replacement......Not now but when it will be needed.

Hire Burt Rutan as the chief designer.....

Could you imagine what he would come up with????
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RE: Commercial Aircraft Designs - Too Boring?

Sat May 20, 2000 4:28 am

I thinnk it was an MD90 with props!

Jeremiah Teahan
Goodbye SR-LX MD-11 / 6th of March 1991 to the 31st of October 2004
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RE: Commercial Aircraft Designs - Too Boring?

Sat May 20, 2000 7:25 am

Yes, some airliners are more pleasing to the eye than others, but who really cares as long as it gets you from point A to point B safely?
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