AeroWesty
Topic Author
Posts: 19551
Joined: Sat Oct 30, 2004 7:37 am

Long Haul Seating Differences - 757 Vs. 707/DC-8

Tue May 30, 2006 7:50 am

Just as sure as your dad would tell you he used to walk three miles in the snow every morning to school when you asked your mom to pull out the station wagon to drive you three blocks, every time talk about the 757 doing trans-Atlantic runs comes up, if someone complains how uncomfortable they are, it's brought up that we used to fly those routes (with multiple stops, even!) on the 707 or DC-8 without any problems.

My question is, for those of you who remember, weren't the 707 and DC-8 better equipped seat-wise in coach for those trips?

On my first 707 flight, I was too young to even think about something as esoteric as how far apart the seats were, and it made little difference to me then. As I grew older, I recall flying non-stop between coasts on TWA 707s, and the seat and pitch were quite comfortable (who knows, maybe I'm just jaded now). Flying later on the UA Super DC-8, it still stands out in my mind that the legroom was quite non-standard to what we were growing used to, and the chair was a more substantial affair. All things considered, I'd still rather fly a Super DC-8 long haul if I was flying coach, just based on past impressions of all types.

My understanding is that the current 757s flying across the ocean are fitted with the same seats you'd find on a domestic trip, with 31" or thereabouts of seat pitch, not exactly the most comfortable for everyone.

Is my memory just faulty about the narrow-bodied long haul jets of the past, or is there no difference? Would the 757 be more accepted if the seats were just a bit more comfy? Perhaps we should be qualifying our saying the 707 and DC-8 were just fine, because they were that much better seat-wise.
International Homo of Mystery
 
User avatar
longhauler
Posts: 5043
Joined: Sat Mar 06, 2004 12:00 am

RE: Long Haul Seating Differences - 757 Vs. 707/DC-8

Tue May 30, 2006 9:33 am

When Trans-Canada Airlines introduced the DC-8-40 in the early 1960s, the seat pitch of Economy and First Class was the same!!! That was the design of the DC-8, as all seats were aligned with the windows, with a 40 inch seat pitch.

While Economy had good leg room, (still with 6 abreast) the 110 or so passengers had access to 4 lavatories. The 24 First Class passengers with the same leg room, enjoyed 4 abreast seating, with foot rests, a stand-up bar and a 5 seat lounge. Oh and yeah .. they had to battle over 2 lavs. All in all, it sounds pretty comfortable.

As the DC-8 evolved at Air Canada, First Class eventually was reduced to 20, then 16, then 12 ... all with the same 2 lavs, bar and 5 seat lounge!! Economy seat pitch was reduced to 36 inches, so the windows were no longer aligned with the seats, and every 7 or so rows, had only a portion of a window out of which to view.

So, yes, I would have to say, that although the B757 would have IFE/audio/films etc, and the DC-8 did not (until the very end of service), I would have to give the edge to the DC-8 in terms of comfort.
Just because I stopped arguing, doesn't mean I think you are right. It just means I gave up!
 
bohica
Posts: 2320
Joined: Tue Feb 10, 2004 3:21 pm

RE: Long Haul Seating Differences - 757 Vs. 707/DC-8

Tue May 30, 2006 9:38 am

Quoting AeroWesty (Thread starter):
Just as sure as your dad would tell you he used to walk three miles in the snow every morning to school

You forgot the part about going uphill in BOTH directions.  Smile

If they would put the 707/DC-8 seats in the 757 and at the same seat pitch it would be much more comfortable. Around the time the 757 came out, airlines started installing thinner seats to save weight at the expense of passenger comfort. Give me a 707 or DC-8 any day.
 
isitsafenow
Posts: 3413
Joined: Sun Feb 01, 2004 9:22 am

RE: Long Haul Seating Differences - 757 Vs. 707/DC-8

Tue May 30, 2006 9:41 am

You gotta remember the DC8's model 30's thru 50 did not hold as many people as the 757. If I remember right, with F anc C the 707's and DC8's were someplace around 24 in F and 120 in C. Those numbers may not be exact but they are close. The seats and pitch were a bit bigger then the planes of today.
safe
If two people agree on EVERYTHING, then one isn't necessary.
 
AeroWesty
Topic Author
Posts: 19551
Joined: Sat Oct 30, 2004 7:37 am

RE: Long Haul Seating Differences - 757 Vs. 707/DC-8

Tue May 30, 2006 9:58 am

Quoting LongHauler (Reply 1):
When Trans-Canada Airlines introduced the DC-8-40 in the early 1960s, the seat pitch of Economy and First Class was the same!

Holy cow! And I thought "three feet for your two legs on Western Airlines" was something.

Quoting Bohica (Reply 2):
You forgot the part about going uphill in BOTH directions

Our dads went to the same school, eh?  Wink

Quoting Isitsafenow (Reply 3):
The seats and pitch were a bit bigger then the planes of today.



Quoting LongHauler (Reply 1):
So, yes, I would have to say, that although the B757 would have IFE/audio/films etc, and the DC-8 did not (until the very end of service), I would have to give the edge to the DC-8 in terms of comfort.

Alright, that's good to have as confirmation. So when we wax on about how hard could it be to fly a 757 to Europe, our flying SFO-HNL-NRT-HKG-BKK in a narrow-body was a completely different affair in comparison.
International Homo of Mystery
 
brightcedars
Posts: 751
Joined: Wed Nov 10, 2004 6:18 pm

RE: Long Haul Seating Differences - 757 Vs. 707/DC-8

Tue May 30, 2006 4:41 pm

Some airlines are still providing decent service on narrow-body aircraft e.g. ME who's A321 seats only 149 or so. Economy is 3-3 at 32" with PTV and business is 2-2 at 48".

I am convinced a 757 can be as comfortable as any wide body if you apply comfortable metrics and modern entertainment to it.
I want the European Union flag on airliners.net!
 
ANCFlyer
Posts: 21391
Joined: Mon Nov 15, 2004 3:51 pm

RE: Long Haul Seating Differences - 757 Vs. 707/DC-8

Tue May 30, 2006 5:47 pm

Quoting AeroWesty (Reply 4):
Quoting Bohica (Reply 2):
You forgot the part about going uphill in BOTH directions

Our dads went to the same school, eh?

. . . . in the blinding snow . . . . .

I'd take a 707 or a Diesel 8 any time and day over a 757 on a long haul.

UAs DC8s were awesome when they did the ANC-HNL flights in the 80s . . . compare them now to a 757 and even in F it's not nearly as comfortable a flight.

Note also that UA had 5 abreast (3-2) coach seating in their DC8s for a time:

View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Robert L. Bradley



Give me "the good ole days" any time.

[Edited 2006-05-30 10:54:35]
FOR THOSE THAT FOUGHT FOR IT, FREEDOM HAS A FLAVOR THE PROTECTED WILL NEVER KNOW OR UNDERSTAND
 
YYZYYT
Posts: 909
Joined: Tue Apr 05, 2005 12:41 am

RE: Long Haul Seating Differences - 757 Vs. 707/DC-8

Tue May 30, 2006 10:46 pm

I have a different issue with the DC 8. On my last trip on one (August 1986, Worldway Canada YYZ-FRA - was in FRA getting ready to return the next morning when Worldways went under. fun!) was quite comfy, 2-3 seating IIRC

BUT, the windows were set lower than other aircraft, and I had to bend forward slightly to see out (which is, after all, the best part about flying). Has a sore neck by the time that we disembarked.

Popular Searches On Airliners.net

Top Photos of Last:   24 Hours  •  48 Hours  •  7 Days  •  30 Days  •  180 Days  •  365 Days  •  All Time

Military Aircraft Every type from fighters to helicopters from air forces around the globe

Classic Airliners Props and jets from the good old days

Flight Decks Views from inside the cockpit

Aircraft Cabins Passenger cabin shots showing seat arrangements as well as cargo aircraft interior

Cargo Aircraft Pictures of great freighter aircraft

Government Aircraft Aircraft flying government officials

Helicopters Our large helicopter section. Both military and civil versions

Blimps / Airships Everything from the Goodyear blimp to the Zeppelin

Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon

Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos

Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft

Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries

Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground

Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos