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Fokkers--Are They Good Aircraft?

Mon Oct 23, 2000 6:33 am

Do the airlines that operate the F-28/F-70/F-100 like the aircraft? I know that some of the more prominent operators of the Fokker jet series are Horizon (F-28), USAirways (F-100), FlightWest (F-28), and Midway (F-100).

Does anyone know if these airlines have any maintenance problems with these aircraft? I read somewhere on here that on operator was having a lot of trouble with keeping the F-100 in shape, but I forget which. Also, are these aircraft more or less cost-effective on short runs when compared to older 737-200s and DC-9s?

Finally, does anyone know how much it would cost to dry-lease an F-28/F-70/F-100 vs. purchasing one?

Thanks in advance!  
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RE: Fokkers--Are They Good Aircraft?

Mon Oct 23, 2000 7:54 am

The Fokker 100/70 were pretty economical aircraft, has economics which match current RJs and beats MD-80/737NGs. But the problem is Fokker went bankrupt, so you can't order new aircraft if your fleet needs them, and the company which now overhauls and makes spares is giving bad and expensive service/support which makes some airlines grew tired of the F-100.
Not much are now available for lease, I guess prices are only marginally lower than a 737-300 or MD-80 of the same age, and higher than a BAe 146 of which a lot are parked for lease now.

The F-28 is noisy and has a bad safety record, but I think it was more economical (seat mile wise) than its contemporaries like 737-2 and DC-9-10.
nobody has ever died from hard work, but why take the risk?
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RE: Fokkers--Are They Good Aircraft?

Mon Oct 23, 2000 11:04 am

I think the Fokkers are a great aircraft, especially the 100, only problem though is that they went bankrupt, and some buisnessmen are trying to restart the company. But, anyway, the Fokker100 is perfect, as it is a great compromise between the MD80/737/A320 and the commuter aircraft. I have flown on them several times, and they are nice aircraft to fly on.
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RE: Fokkers--Are They Good Aircraft?

Mon Oct 23, 2000 11:50 am

US Airways and American seem to like the Fokker 100--US painted its 40 planes in the new livery, which suggests they're hanging onto them for awhile. The DC9's and MD80s are not being painted. I can't visit an airport served by AA without seeing theirs. Neither airline has, or to my knowledge has on order, 100-seat aircraft to replace the F100. Despite the wide selection available--736, 717, and soon the A318. And several RJ 100 seaters coming in the next few years as well. If anyone knows differently about US or AA please inform.

As a passenger, I dislike the Fokker jets very much. The fuselage is not wide enough for five seats across, and my back (5'11", 190 lb) doesnt' fit the curved seatbacks well. The curved seatback is Fokker's attempt to compensate for the lack of width in the cabin. The DC9/ M80/ 717 fuselage, by comparison, is plenty wide for five across.

The only passenger plus about the Fokker jets is that their T-tail, rear-engine arrangement means more coach window seats ahead of the windows, suitable for aerial photography.

All this said, I'll take the Fokker jets over ANY prop, any day.

Jim K.
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RE: Fokkers--Are They Good Aircraft?

Mon Oct 23, 2000 12:01 pm

I totally agree with you SN330. As I work for the supporting company which tries to keep the Fokkers into services as long as possible I get a lot of possitive respons from the airlines who operates them.

Especially British Midland, KLMUK, MALEV and Austrian Airl are very happy with their F100/F70 acft.

The F28 has a difficult job to keep a possition in the market (high fuel burning against high raw oil price)

The F50 which I like most will be replaced by some airlines by regional jets. But this is not because the F50 is a bad acft. Passengers are asking for regional jets. In their oppinion turboprops are ageing acft.

Currently there is an investigation to check if it is interesting from business point of view to offer a modification kit to transfer some passenger F50's in a full cargo configuration.

Some Airlines like Uk based Channel Express and Swiss based Farnair are likely to operate full cargo F50's in the near future.

So it seems that the Fokkers will continue to dominate the sky for the years to come.

Best Regards,


RE: Fokkers--Are They Good Aircraft?

Mon Oct 23, 2000 12:37 pm

I sincerely hope so. I've always loved the looks of the F100. But living up here in Seattle, I imagine it will be a while before I get to fly on one. Hopefully AA and US can wait 
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RE: Fokkers--Are They Good Aircraft?

Mon Oct 23, 2000 12:41 pm

From my own viewpoint as a mechanic on them, yes they're basically good planes. They have their good and ugly faces, but what plane doesn't? IMO, the bad rap as "hangar queens" they get is due more to the fact that they are oddballs of a fleet...somewhat unconventional compared to people born and bred on Boeing/Douglas...or even Airbus. A lot of "conventional wisdom" does not apply to this bird. Summers can drive you nuts though, as the air conditioning on the ground cools marginal at best...the packs really need to be in tip-top shape. The spare parts situation is not as acute as one might think for an "orphan" airplane, nor is factory support. Depends on how much inventory an airline wants to stock ( or sell ). I was lukewarm about this plane at first...and then I've grown to the point where I really like it...and actually prefer it many times -- Though nothing will replace the 737-200, or the 727 as my sweetheart plane.
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RE: Fokkers--Are They Good Aircraft?

Mon Oct 23, 2000 2:30 pm

Thanks, everyone, for the information! I've always adminred the Fokker jets for their grace and sleekness in appearance, but I've never flown one. Thus, I didn't know too much about how they actually are in terms of handling, comfort, and maintenance.

The reason I ask is that I've been considering the possibility of a western regional airline similar to the current Pan Am, as merely a thought experiment. F-100s and F-70s would be my aircraft of choice for these routes, allowing this airline to compete in this heavily-trafficked corridor with smaller capacity, and greater frills than airlines flying 737s (like Southwest and United). In theory, this could be accomplished more cheaply with the Fokkers than 737s or DC-9s, if they have cheaper up-front, operation, and maintenance costs. Apparently, this is the case.

Thanks again!  
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RE: Fokkers--Are They Good Aircraft?

Mon Oct 23, 2000 3:14 pm

I love dem Fokkers!  

Seriously, they are modern and efficient. The ones that US and AA own are fairly new, so they will probably stay for awhile despite the manufacturer going out of business.

Fokker - the most carefully pronounced name in aviation.
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Bad Climb Rates...

Mon Oct 23, 2000 3:32 pm

An American Airlines captain told me that the F-100 has bad climb above 10,000... only 500-750 ft./min.
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RE: Fokkers--Are They Good Aircraft?

Mon Oct 23, 2000 6:32 pm

that's tru as the Vietnam Airlines F70 that i went on last week. Fokker planes HAD lots of business (correct me if i'm wrong) esp., the F50s but I would acutally prefer the CRJs. I think some turboprops are modern and efficient for instance the Bombardier Canadair Q series and ATR. One thing i dun like the Fokker turboprops is their main landing gear look kind of like a stupid big fat "pig"

Fokker really went bankrupt?!?! I didn't know that...but i thought they have quite a lot of business?!?!

But there were more F100 operators than the F70 rite?

By the way, I love CRJs...I went on them quite a few time and they impressed me a lot...

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RE: Fokkers--Are They Good Aircraft?

Mon Oct 23, 2000 10:01 pm

Airbus Lover,

I prefer the Dash 8 over the CRJ any time! The CRJ is so tight and cramped, it really shows it´s just a stretched Challenger. Compared to that, the Dash 8 is rooooomy! (Not to mention the Avro "Widebody Feeling" RJs).


RE: Fokkers--Are They Good Aircraft?

Mon Oct 23, 2000 10:56 pm

When Fokker went belly-up, DASA took a very long close look at them but couldn't agree terms. If DASA (the German element of Airbus) had bought Fokker, it could have provided a ready made super-regional jet for sale under the Airbus banner.

I've flown on the F50 and the F100. Always thought the F50 to be roomy and comfortable inside and much preferable to the ATR42 ('A Terrible Racket'). On the other hand I felt the F100 was noisy but otherwise fine.

Read somewhere that airlines which operated the smaller Fokkers alongside the F100 referred to the smaller ones as 'Little Mother Fokkers' and the F100 as the 'Big Mother Fokker'.

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DLX - A Story

Mon Oct 23, 2000 11:15 pm

There was an old movie "Groove Tube was the name, I believe" where there was a guy interviewing an old fighter pilot. He was saying

"I vas flying along und der vas a Fokker on my left and a Fokker on my right" - the pronuciation wasn't as "careful" as it should have been. At that point the announcer said "For those who may not know, a Fokker is a type of aircraft" to which the pilot replied "No, no, these fokkers were in Messerschmits".

RE: Fokkers--Are They Good Aircraft?

Mon Oct 23, 2000 11:37 pm


Midway operates 8 F100s and from what I've heard they are not that satisfied with them. They are actually trying to return them early to the leasing company (even though all the F100s operated by Midway are less than 7 years old!). I think they will be gradually replaced by new 737-700s that are on order. I don't know exactely why Midway is returning them, but they keep praising the good economics of the new 737-700s.
Anyways, F100s have good economics overall but they are pretty hard to maintain. They are also very quiet aircraft. I personally don't really like their shape (I like the DC-9s much better) and the cabin is a little narrow. But They offer smooth rides and are a good aircraft to fly on.
As for F28s, I don't know much about them. The only one I see regularly is operated by Canadian regional and it is really noisy!!!!


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