coyoteguy
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8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Thu Oct 05, 2006 12:15 am

Good day all... came across this interesting photo in the database of an economy cabin on an American Airlines DC-10 in 1975... with 8 abreast seating. Looks like there was a nice space in the middle of the 4 seats in the center (nice wide double armrest I guess), and look at the size of the aisles. You could practically drive a car through there. No overhead bins in the center.


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Photo © Stefan Ottosson



As we all know, the DC-10 went to 9 abreast 2-5-2 as standard, with some carriers even doing 10 abreast 3-4-3.

Of course 1975 was back in the days of 'glamor', hot meals, free drinks, flight attendants who were actually there to enhance the passenger's enjoyment of the flight, etc etc. An interesting glance back to the days when flying was an adventure.
 
SNATH
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Thu Oct 05, 2006 12:21 am

Yep, those were the days!!! And B747s used to have 9-abreast too!!!

Tony
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474218
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Thu Oct 05, 2006 12:27 am

When they were first delivered L-1011's used the same 2-4-2 seating, with coat storage area between the four center seats.
 
legacy135
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Thu Oct 05, 2006 1:46 am

Swissair used to have 2-4-2 until business class was launched. Before the planes used to be in a Eco/First Configuration. Then by introducing the 3 - class system, Swissair went as well to the terrible 2-5-2 configuration with the "famous middle seat".

Balair on the other hand at it's DC-10 in a 3-4-2 configuration, which was much better than the 2-5-2 one.

Cheers
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SNATH
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Thu Oct 05, 2006 1:52 am

Quoting Legacy135 (Reply 3):
Balair on the other hand at it's DC-10 in a 3-4-2 configuration, which was much better than the 2-5-2 one.

I totally agree with this and I never understood why all DC-10 / MD-11 / B777 operators use the 3-4-2 config, which is far superior to the 2-5-2 config. Incidentally, Finnair and KLM also have 3-4-2 on their MD-11s.

Tony
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N1120A
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Thu Oct 05, 2006 3:15 am

Quoting Legacy135 (Reply 3):
Balair on the other hand at it's DC-10 in a 3-4-2 configuration, which was much better than the 2-5-2 one.



Quoting SNATH (Reply 4):
Finnair and KLM also have 3-4-2 on their MD-11s.

SR/LX also ran 3-4-2 on their MD-11s
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milesrich
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Thu Oct 05, 2006 10:53 am

The DC-10's and the L-1011's were delivered with 2-4-2 seating in Y. The 747 was 2-4-3. And the seat pitch was a minimum 36 inches. The Tri Jets sat about 210 people, and the 747 carried 365. Yes, those were the days, and flying coach was very comfortable. These seating arrangements lasted in the US until about 1977, or 1978. But there were a few airplanes configured differently. I flew LAX-HNL on Continental on a Ten in 1976 on some affinity group charter flight that was really just a way around regulated fares that had ten across in the Ten, and those seats were Small. But in the first few years of widebodies, flying on dual aisle aircraft, even in coach was a treat, not at all like today.
 
lincoln
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Thu Oct 05, 2006 11:05 am

Quoting Milesrich (Reply 6):
But in the first few years of widebodies, flying on dual aisle aircraft, even in coach was a treat, not at all like today

It may not be as much of a treat, but I'd still go reasonably out of my way to fly on a widebody...

Lincoln

[I've done LAX-ORD-DTW-PLN-DTW-ORD-LAX on a combination of UA and NW so that I could try out a 747-400 and a 777-200; then I did SAN-ATL-DTW-PLN-DTW-CVG-SAN on a combination of DL and NW to try a 767; got a DC-10 by chance LAX-DTW on NW once...If only I could figure out how I could snag a ride on a L-1011...]
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474218
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Thu Oct 05, 2006 11:18 am

Quoting Milesrich (Reply 6):
The Tri Jets sat about 210 people

Original L-1011 standard interiors had either 273 or 256 seats. I don't know about the DC-10 but it should have been similar.
 
milesrich
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Thu Oct 05, 2006 11:55 am

I may be a little light at 210 seats but the L-1011's originally delivered to TW, EA, and DL didn't have 256 or 273 seats.

In checking a 1979 United DC-10 seating chart, the config was 40F and 214Y, but that was after the seating was changed to 9 across from 8, and the Coach lounge was removed, and the First Class lounge was reconfigured. The 214 Y seating did still include 36 inches of pitch.
 
wjcandee
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Thu Oct 05, 2006 12:07 pm

Those seats look about the same size as today's seats. The entire width of the additional seat appears to be made up in wasted space in the middle and wasted space on the aisle. Pitch is another issue, but there is little advantage to the coach passenger to having 4 in the center instead of 5. Which is why that's the way things are now. 10-across is another issue.
 
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BreninTW
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Thu Oct 05, 2006 12:27 pm

Quoting SNATH (Reply 1):
And B747s used to have 9-abreast too

I remember those! My first flight was on an SAA 747 JNB - Ilo da Sol - JFK. 2-5-2 seating, my father and I sat in two seats, my mother and brother sat in the two seats behind us -- my brother and I had the window seats, and the inflight movie was Tootsie! (Did they have more than one movie? I don't remember) I remember it got mighty boring after a while too -- I was about 11 years old at the time.

Edit: spelling correction.

[Edited 2006-10-05 05:33:08]
 
AirCop
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Thu Oct 05, 2006 12:50 pm

Quoting Milesrich (Reply 6):
The DC-10's and the L-1011'srnwererndelivered with 2-4-2 seating in Y. The 747 was 2-4-3. And thernseatrnpitch was a minimum 36 inches. The Tri Jets sat about 210rnpeople, andrnthe 747 carried 365. Yes, those were the days, andrnflying coach wasrnvery comfortable

In short no one on a DC-10 or Tristar was ever more than one seat away from the aisle. Those were the days when the wide bodies were the planes to fly just for the comfort sake alone.
 
BHMNONREV
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Thu Oct 05, 2006 1:13 pm

Quoting Milesrich (Reply 9):
I may be a little light at 210 seats but the L-1011's originally delivered to TW, EA, and DL didn't have 256 or 273 seats

Not sure about the original delivery, but for the longest time TW had their L10's configured for 230, not sure of the F/Y breakdown..
 
milesrich
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Fri Oct 06, 2006 2:08 pm

The seats were not at all like today's seats. The width of the Y seats was close to what Delta has in J and was the same as the Business Class seats of the 1980's, i.e KLM, Pan Am, Aerolinas Argentina's Business Class, all of which I flew, of the late 80's.

Delta's original 3 class L-1011's for HNL service in the late 80's also used these seats in Business Class.

The L-1011 had the funky divider. All three were comfortable, but I preferred the DC-10 and 747. No one ever complained about being packed in the back. The pitch was comparable to today's domestic first class.
 
B6DC10
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Fri Oct 06, 2006 2:25 pm

AA DC-10's were 9 abreast for most of the Y cabin, except the last 5 rows or so, where the back of the cabin curved inward...there it was 8 abreast.
TriJet or No Jet At All...
 
UpperDeck79
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Fri Oct 06, 2006 8:23 pm

Quoting SNATH (Reply 4):
Incidentally, Finnair and KLM also have 3-4-2 on their MD-11s.

It's half and half on AY: first part of Y is 3-4-2, the rear part of Y is 3-4-3...
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jaysit
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Sat Oct 07, 2006 1:22 am

Quoting Legacy135 (Reply 3):
Then by introducing the 3 - class system, Swissair went as well to the terrible 2-5-2 configuration with the "famous middle seat".

I don't think that's correct. I flew Swissair DC-10s as a kid, and when they went 9-abreast, were always 3-4-2. As were there MD-11s.

The 3-4-2 configuration is the best there is. I don't see why the much vaunted 777 can't provide that. 3-3-3 basically screws everyone except the 2 middle aisle seats. And 2-5-2 is just too horrible to even contemplate.
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mandala499
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Sat Oct 07, 2006 1:31 am

Just out of curiousity, did anyone operate a 3-3-3 seating on a DC10? just wondering why its only seen on the 777 in that config...

Mandala499
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rdwelch
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Sat Oct 07, 2006 1:36 am

Quoting Coyoteguy (Thread starter):
Of course 1975 was back in the days of 'glamor', hot meals, free drinks, flight attendants who were actually there to enhance the passenger's enjoyment of the flight, etc etc. An interesting glance back to the days when flying was an adventure.

........second hand smoke, you know, all the good stuff.

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milesrich
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Sat Oct 07, 2006 11:59 am

American introduced DC-10 Service in late 1971. Coach had 2-4-2 seating, not nine across as alleged above. United, National, Western, Delta, Northwest, and Continental also introduced the DC-10 with 2-4-2 seating. Northwest flew the P&W powered long range Series 40 while the other carriers began service with the domestic Series 10's. I have no idea how SAS or Alitalia or any other non US airlines originally configured their Series 30 ships, or how JAL's Series 40's were originally equiped, as I did not fly on them prior to the mid 1980's; however, I flew on all the above domestic carrier's Series 10's on many occasions in the early and mid 70's, and on NW on Flight 3 ORD-ANC-TYO (HND) and every airplane I flew on was equiped that way until about 1977.
 
L1011
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Sat Oct 07, 2006 3:01 pm

When Eastern's L-1011s had 2-4-2 seating in coach, the seats had a control for the middle part of the seatback. In addition to reclining the seat, you could adjust the contour to fit your back comfortably. When Eastern went to 9-abreast, this control disappeared.

Also, I can give you some approximate dates for the switch, since I keep detailed flight records.

On 6/20/77, I flew ATL-MCO on N302EA, and seating was 2-4-2.
On 6/21/78, I flew ATL-LAX on N313EA, and seating was 2-5-2.
On 6/27/78, I flew LAX-ATL on N331EA, and seating was still 2-4-2.
On 6/29/78, I flew SEA-ATL-MCO on N302EA, and seating was 2-5-2.
I never again flew on an L-1011 or DC-10 with 8-abreast seating.

Bob Bradley
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ClassicLover
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Sun Oct 08, 2006 3:54 am

Quoting L1011 (Reply 21):
When Eastern's L-1011s had 2-4-2 seating in coach, the seats had a control for the middle part of the seatback. In addition to reclining the seat, you could adjust the contour to fit your back comfortably. When Eastern went to 9-abreast, this control disappeared.

Wow, certainly a case of progress going backwards. It's amazing some of the things that used to be offered in comparison to today. I really wish I had had the chance to be flying in the early 1970s.
I do quite enjoy a spot of flying - more so when it's not in Economy!
 
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eta unknown
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Sun Oct 08, 2006 2:13 pm

Correction for an above posting re SAA 747: the configuration was 3-4-2 as SAA had to make detours around Africa for their European flights due to sanctions and aircraft weight was a big issue.
 
JGPH1A
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Sun Oct 08, 2006 11:05 pm

Quoting Brenintw (Reply 11):
I remember those! My first flight was on an SAA 747 JNB - Ilo da Sol - JFK. 2-5-2 seating, my father and I sat in two seats, my mother and brother sat in the two seats behind us -- my brother and I had the window seats, and the inflight movie was Tootsie! (Did they have more than one movie? I don't remember) I remember it got mighty boring after a while too -- I was about 11 years old at the time.

Tootsie came out in the mid-80's, right ? It would have been 3-4-3 in Y on the 747 around then. Possibly you were seated towards the rear, where it was 2-4-2.
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longhauler
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Sun Oct 08, 2006 11:28 pm

When Air Canada introduced the L1011 in march 1973, it was configured in a 32F 225Y configuration.

Economy was 8 abreast, in a 2X2 2X2 layout. Air Canada did not have the coat closet between the two pairs of centre seats, but had a large 10" armrest instead. This was competitive with the DC-10s of the day.

Starting in October of 1977, again like the DC-10s and other airlines L1011s of the day, a reconfiguration started. The new layout was 20F 269Y. First Class was shortened by two rows, but the four swivel seats in the front centre remained. The pitch in Economy stayed the same, but the seating configuration was changed to 2X5X2. There was no change in Lav or Galley placement.

From what I understand, most airlines at the time were doing the same. The only airline I know of that resisted this reduction in comfort was Swissair, and stayed with the 2X4X2 layout in Economy of the DC-10s well into the 80s.

Also, it was at this time that the B747s of the world were also changing from 3X4X2 in Economy to 3X4X3. (As was Air Canada's)
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LawnDart
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Mon Oct 09, 2006 10:42 am

Quoting SNATH (Reply 1):
Yep, those were the days!!!



Quoting Milesrich (Reply 6):
flying on dual aisle aircraft, even in coach was a treat,



Quoting Coyoteguy (Thread starter):
was back in the days of 'glamor',

Oh, yeah?


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milesrich
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Mon Oct 09, 2006 1:58 pm

OH YEAH! Lawn Dart, that picture was taken in 1986 on Wardair. I never said anything about Wardair. I have never flown Wardair, but I can tell you in 1986, all the airlines that had 8 across seating had re-configured to 9 across. Reread my post, that is, if you can, read that is. My post is about DC-10's in the early and mid 1970's. That pic was taken 10 years later. And the airlines I mentioned were DC-10-10's on American, United, National, Western, Continental, and Delta, and DC-10-40's on Northwest Orient. I didn't even mention the Series 30 airplanes. I referred to DOMESTIC SERVICE in the UNITED STATES, and Northwest's International Service with Ten's which was limited at the time to one flight a day, NW 3 ORD-ANC-Tokyo Haneda.
 
Mason
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Mon Oct 09, 2006 11:13 pm

I remember flying on Garuda's domestic DC-10s, 3-4-3 coach seating. Wow, that was tight! We used to transfer to CX in Jakarta, and it seemed like we were riding in our living room compared to those Garuda 10s.
 
coyoteguy
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RE: 8 Abreast In Y On DC-10

Mon Oct 09, 2006 11:23 pm

Quoting LawnDart (Reply 26):
Oh, yeah?

I think you have missed the point. Glamor was dying by 1986 and Wardair was never really in that category in the first place as far as I know.