G500
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Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 5:32 pm

For the most part pilots like the airplane we fly...

There are several airplanes out-there that seem to get the most compliments/praise from pilots. its understandable why pilots like airplanes like the 757, 747-400, and Gulfstream-V... Those are good looking machines that can do the job

The one airplane that I find surprising is the L1011. I've heard several good things about it from pilots that used to fly it..

What was so special about the L1011? Why was it a "pilots airplane"
 
travelavnut
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 5:59 pm

What I gathered leeching the forums for years is the great handling, cockpit ergonomics and innovations like the DLC (Direct Lift Control)
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kaitak
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 6:08 pm

It was a much loved aircraft by pax and crews alike; very reliable, good cockpit and (as mentioned above) ergonomics ... just a nice aircraft in many ways.

It's amazing to think that at one stage, DL operated over a quarter of the entire L1011 production - and CX operated around 20 at its peak of L1011 operations, before the A330/340s joined the fleet.

I don't think I've ever met a pilot (or passenger) who had a bad word to say about it.
 
QANTAS747-438
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 6:10 pm

It was powerful too. I believe it had a 2:1 weight to thrust ratio.
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G500
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 6:13 pm

I have never met a pilot who said anything negative about the L1011 either

I sat next to a TWA pilot once, he flew the thing for many years, he said the airplane " was years ahead of its time"
 
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mayor
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 6:15 pm

Quoting kaitak (Reply 2):
It's amazing to think that at one stage, DL operated over a quarter of the entire L1011 production

DL flew a total of 70 a/c, up to 56 at one time.
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westindian425
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 6:16 pm

The L-1011 Tristar (my favorite airplane of all time, so take it with a grain of salt...  ) is a pilot favorite for it's speed, ease of handling (cockpit ergonomics, including more room than most other widebodies today, innovative technology that led to many of the current automations today, etc.), relatively quiet, and appealing exterior. Many also loved the lower galley accessible by elevator.
God did not create aircraft pilots to be on the ground
 
travelavnut
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 6:29 pm

Quoting QANTAS747-438 (Reply 3):

It was powerful too. I believe it had a 2:1 weight to thrust ratio.

Wouldn't that make it able to go vertical?! 
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westindian425
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 6:46 pm

Quoting travelavnut (Reply 7):
Wouldn't that make it able to go vertical?! 

LOL! I think you're right, although the F15 needs a bit of a running start in order to go vertical, and I do believe it's thrust-to-weight ratio is at or near 2:1.  
God did not create aircraft pilots to be on the ground
 
G500
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 6:51 pm

Quoting westindian425 (Reply 6):

Did it have the range for California-Asia???

Or was more like U.S to Europe and South America?
 
BoeingGuy
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 7:01 pm

Quoting westindian425 (Reply 8):
Quoting travelavnut (Reply 7):
Wouldn't that make it able to go vertical?!

LOL! I think you're right, although the F15 needs a bit of a running start in order to go vertical, and I do believe it's thrust-to-weight ratio is at or near 2:1.

He said weight to thrust, not thrust to weight. Another very useful thread a few years ago showed the power to weight ratios of all the various airplane models. Go look for it.

I'd always heard the L1011 was a solid airplane too. Apparently Boeing took one apart and said it was the best built airplane they'd ever seen. Like the 717, it was killed by economic and business factors that don't reflect the airplane's capabilities.
 
N766UA
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 7:05 pm

Don't forget it had enormous windows! The view from the front of an L10 is unmatched.
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transaeroyyz
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 7:13 pm

I know a AC FA in the 80s, she didn't like working on them because in cruise they fly with a nose up angle and it was hard pushing the carts uphill. Guessing 10 to 20 angle maybe, anyone know why?
 
a3xx900
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 7:19 pm

Quoting transaeroyyz (Reply 12):
Guessing 10 to 20 angle maybe, anyone know why?

I'm not a pilot, but errrrr.... definitely not 
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BoeingGuy
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 7:19 pm

Quoting transaeroyyz (Reply 12):
Guessing 10 to 20 angle maybe, anyone know why?

It certainly wouldn't have been 10 or 20, maybe like 3 degrees. Many models rotate at 8 degrees and initial climb is 15, so it wouldn't be cruising that those attitudes.

[Edited 2013-04-18 13:07:10]
 
a3xx900
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 7:27 pm

My first memory of flying is on a LT L-1011 going to Greece, I remember I loved it.


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Are there still any L1011 in service somewhere (except military)?
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Transpac787
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 8:10 pm

Quoting QANTAS747-438 (Reply 3):

It was powerful too. I believe it had a 2:1 weight to thrust ratio.

No, not even close. I've never heard of anyone using a weight-to-thrust ratio, but in any case here are the figures:

L1011-1
MGTOW: 430.0
Thrust Per Engine: 42.0
Total Thrust: 126.0

Thrust to weight: 0.29
Weight to thrust: 3.41


L1011-500
MGTOW: 510.0
Thrust per engine: 50.0
Total thrust: 150.0

Thrust to weight: 0.29
Weight to Thrust: 3.40


Just for comparison sake, here are a few others aircraft from the time period:

747-200B
MGTOW: 833.0
Thrust per engine: 54.7
Total thrust: 218.8

Thrust to weight: 0.26
Weight to thrust: 3.80


DC10-30
MGTOW: 555.0
Thrust per engine: 51.0
Total thrust: 153.0

Thrust to weight: 0.28
Weight to thrust: 3.63


L1011 had a very slight T:W advantage over similar-mission types but not by too much.

Quoting westindian425 (Reply 8):
and I do believe it's thrust-to-weight ratio is at or near 2:1

Also, not even close.

F-15C
Loaded Weight: 44.5
MGTOW: 68.0
Thrust per engine with afterburner: 25.0
Total thrust with afterburner: 50.0

Thrust to weight at combat weight: 1.12
Thrust to weight at MGTOW: 0.73


I'm not sure there's a plane in existence that even remotely gets close to 2:1 T:W ratio. Just having a tad over 1:1 is good enough to accelerate doing pure vertical.
 
KELPkid
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 8:18 pm

Quoting QANTAS747-438 (Reply 3):
It was powerful too. I believe it had a 2:1 weight to thrust ratio.

IIRC, this saved a flight crew's bacon once. An L-1011 was stranded down in MEX, in need of an engine change. The decision was made to do a two engine ferry back to the 'states. Well, as luck would have it, they had a second engine failure on climbout from MEX, and were able to around on one engine and safely land the bird  Wow!
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sturmovik
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 8:42 pm

Quoting N766UA (Reply 11):
The view from the front of an L10 is unmatched.

I would've thought the DC-10/MD-11 were better in this regard. Haven't sat in either one, but just a hunch..
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RussianJet
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 8:45 pm

I certainly liked my one and only flight on the L1011 with the RAF. It had a beautifully smooth, powerful takeoff and climb, and was all-round very enjoyable indeed.
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N766UA
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 8:46 pm

Quoting sturmovik (Reply 18):
I would've thought the DC-10/MD-11 were better in this regard. Haven't sat in either one, but just a hunch..

DC-10 is no slouch either, but the L10 wins there.
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Viscount724
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 8:55 pm

Quoting N766UA (Reply 11):
Don't forget it had enormous windows! The view from the front of an L10 is unmatched.

I don't think the L-1011 cockpit windows are much larger than those on the DC-10 and MD-11

Unfortunately the L-1011's passenger windows are notably small compared to the very large windows on the DC-10/MD-11. Also smaller than 747 windows. I also found the L-1011 windows located slightly too high on the fuselage compared to other widebodies.
 
LY777
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 9:05 pm

What was the speed of the L1011 and of the DC10, compared to the 747 (mach 0.85) and the 767 (mach 0.80)?
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keuleatr72
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 9:13 pm

Good day

One of my former Flight Instructor was a retired LTU-Pilot. During his career he flew the Fokker 28, the L-1011, the 767 and ended up on the MD11. His favorite plane was and still is the Tristar. When he starts walking down memory lane, he always tells stories about his time on the 1011. Not once did he tell me something about the others planes he flew.
Although the Tristar was retired many, many moons ago and LTU is an airline of the past, he still comes up with new stuff about his 1011. And it never gets boring - never.
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cubastar
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 9:15 pm

I believe that at one time, Delta had some pilots that had flown the 747, DC-10 and the L1011. Almost all of them agreed that the L10 was their favorite widebody to fly.
 
bueb0g
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 9:26 pm

Quoting transaeroyyz (Reply 12):
Guessing 10 to 20 angle maybe, anyone know why?

Nowhere near that. That would mean it'd be stalling in level flight! Most aircraft sit about 3 - 4 degrees noseup in cruise and not really any higher. I don't think the L-1011 was an exception.
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Flighty
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 9:35 pm

Quoting BoeingGuy (Reply 10):
Like the 717, it was killed by economic and business factors that don't reflect the airplane's capabilities.

Totally respected aircraft (similar to Concorde) but did not meet the extremely tight financial demands of commercial air service anymore post - 2000.

There was a good post here comparing the D10 to L1011 that concluded, the L10 was more ambitious in every way, but the D10 was slightly cheaper, the -30 had longer range and superior fuel burn, and that kind of took care of it.
 
Viscount724
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 9:43 pm

Quoting LY777 (Reply 22):
What was the speed of the L1011 and of the DC10, compared to the 747 (mach 0.85) and the 767 (mach 0.80)?

Maximum operating Mach number per the FAA type certificate data sheet:

L-1011 - 0.90
747 (all except 747-8 and -8F) - 0.92
747-8 and -8F - 0.90
DC-10 - 0.88
MD-11 - 0.88
767 - 0.86
777-200/200ER - 0.87
777-300/300ER/200LR/200F - 0.89
787 - 0.90
 
Yakflyer
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 9:48 pm

Quoting westindian425 (Reply 6):
Many also loved the lower galley accessible by elevator.

Many also got love in the lower galley!!!
 
G500
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 9:50 pm

Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 27):
L-1011 - 0.90
747 (all except 747-8 and -8F) - 0.92
747-8 and -8F - 0.90
DC-10 - 0.88
MD-11 - 0.88
767 - 0.86
777-200/200ER - 0.87
777-300/300ER/200LR/200F - 0.89
787 - 0.90

WOW great numbers Viscount, thanks for posting

I must admit I used to think the L1011 was an ugly airplane then I started hearing how much pilots enjoyed flying it.

its growing on me


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Yakflyer
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 9:54 pm

Quoting bueb0g (Reply 25):
Most aircraft sit about 3 - 4 degrees noseup in cruise and not really any higher. I don't think the L-1011 was an exception.

The L-1011 did fly with the cabin at a higher angle than any other commercial jet I've flown. The angle of incidence is the angle of the center line of the fuselage and the cord line of the wing. I think on the L-1011 the angle was zero or very close to zero where on other jets the angle would be 2-3 degrees. That is why it flew with it's nose up.
 
PGNCS
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 10:04 pm

Quoting g500 (Thread starter):
The one airplane that I find surprising is the L1011.

Why are you surprised?

Quoting g500 (Thread starter):
What was so special about the L1011?

It is comfortable, quiet, has exceptional cockpit space and ergonomics (trouncing the B-744 in all those areas,) has extraordinarily well-designed (and redundant) systems that were far ahead of their time, and the best harmonized flight controls of any aircraft I have flown.

Without doubt my favorite aircraft of all the airliners I have time in: A-320 is a distant second.
 
n92r03
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 10:12 pm

Very cool plane. My last flight on one was LAX-SAN in the mid 90's.

One question thought, what was the ceiling for it at cruise? I seem to recall a 767 pilot telling me the 767 could fly "so much" higher than the L-1011.
 
BoeingGuy
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 10:17 pm

Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 27):
Quoting LY777 (Reply 22):
What was the speed of the L1011 and of the DC10, compared to the 747 (mach 0.85) and the 767 (mach 0.80)?

Maximum operating Mach number per the FAA type certificate data sheet:

L-1011 - 0.90
747 (all except 747-8 and -8F) - 0.92
747-8 and -8F - 0.90
DC-10 - 0.88
MD-11 - 0.88
767 - 0.86
777-200/200ER - 0.87
777-300/300ER/200LR/200F - 0.89

I think he meant normal cruise speed not VMO/MMO. 777 is about mach .83 or .84. 787 is about mach .85. 767 is about mach .80 as he stated. 990 was faster than heck.

What was the L-1011s normal cruise speed?
 
b741
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 10:19 pm

I have only two aircraft tech books in my collection-one on the Tristar, another on the A330. Aside from tonnes of mags. I always read the Tristar book time after time.
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cschleic
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 10:23 pm

IIRC, it had innovative automatic wing surface controls that aided handling, and generated an unusual amount of lift from the design of the the wing mating area on the bottom of the fuselage.
 
georgiaame
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 10:29 pm

I (a passenger of steerage class) never cared for them. 2-5-2 was a bitch, I had been spoiled by the original 747s at 3-4-2, later the 767s with 2-3-2, ultimately by the Airbus 340s, "under thrusted", slow to rise, hairdryers on the wings, uber quiet 2-4-2 seating. Technologically, the aircraft might have been years ahead of its time, but for me, it made a big noise, it rolled down the runway, pointed itself into the air, made even more noise, landed, and got me to where I was going. Just like all of them do. My 2 cynical cents...
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ChiGB1973
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 11:14 pm

Quoting kaitak (Reply 2):
It's amazing to think that at one stage, DL operated over a quarter of the entire L1011 production - and CX operated around 20 at its peak of L1011 operations, before the A330/340s joined the fleet.

Very nice. Amazing to work on as cabin crew.

When I started at TZ in 2002, they had the largest fleet of L-1011s in the world at 16.

The lower galley was the best. It seems it was either the most senior or the most junior down there. Some loved it, some hated it.

Memories.

M
 
thrufru
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 11:15 pm

Well, I never flew one as a pilot, only an F/A. I was on them for three years and loved it. I still spent a lot of time in the flight deck, though. Ding ding, is Dan there? Send him back, please.
 
Archer
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 11:23 pm

The 1011 International version probably could do California to Asia. It had the 3rd landing gear so you could always tell
it was international. Not sure if it could do that far.
 
lweber557
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 11:25 pm

I flew on one as a passenger on a ATA military charter back in 2008. I sat in one of the last rows and I remember when we took off there was a loud thump and some of the overhead bins popped open. Freaked alot of us out but I'm still happy to have flown on one because I doubt I ever will have the opportunity to again.
 
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mayor
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 11:35 pm

Quoting cubastar (Reply 24):
I believe that at one time, Delta had some pilots that had flown the 747, DC-10 and the L1011. Almost all of them agreed that the L10 was their favorite widebody to fly.

For a short time after the Tristars were delivered, DL was operating the 747, DC-10 and the Tristar at the same time. I remember non-revving ORD-ATL on a DC-10 and ATL-ORD on a Tristar one weekend.
"A committee is a group of the unprepared, appointed by the unwilling, to do the unnecessary"----Fred Allen
 
Viscount724
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 11:38 pm

Quoting Archer (Reply 39):
The 1011 International version probably could do California to Asia. It had the 3rd landing gear so you could always tell it was international.

No L-1011s had the "3rd landing gear", assuming you're referring to the centerline gear as on the DC-10-30/40.
 
NWAROOSTER
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 11:45 pm

What really hurt the L-1011 was the fact that Rolls Royce was in very dire straits and was unable to supply enough engines to Lockheed, thus forcing some airlines to buy the DC-10. If Rolls Royce was not on the edge of bankruptcy and possible demise, the L1011 would have ben a much more successful aircraft. Some airlines like Delta flew the DC-10 while waiting for the L-1011 engine shortage to be resolved.   
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mayor
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Thu Apr 18, 2013 11:50 pm

Quoting NWAROOSTER (Reply 43):
What really hurt the L-1011 was the fact that Rolls Royce was in very dire straits and was unable to supply enough engines to Lockheed, thus forcing some airlines to buy the DC-10. If Rolls Royce was not on the edge of bankruptcy and possible demise, the L1011 would have ben a much more successful aircraft. Some airlines like Delta flew the DC-10 while waiting for the L-1011 engine shortage to be resolved.

Exactly. This is why DL bought 5 DC-10s, sold them to UA and then leased them back in DL's livery until the Tristars came on the property.

Quoting Archer (Reply 39):
The 1011 International version probably could do California to Asia. It had the 3rd landing gear so you could always tell
it was international. Not sure if it could do that far.

Nope.....the Tristar never had the "3rd gear" like the DC-10-30 and -40.
"A committee is a group of the unprepared, appointed by the unwilling, to do the unnecessary"----Fred Allen
 
L0VE2FLY
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Fri Apr 19, 2013 12:09 am

Quoting N766UA (Reply 11):
Don't forget it had enormous windows! The view from the front of an L10 is unmatched.
Quoting sturmovik (Reply 18):
I would've thought the DC-10/MD-11 were better in this regard. Haven't sat in either one, but just a hunch..

Anyone knows why old aircrafts, especially widebody trijets had much larger windows than modern birds? The cockpit windows of the 787 & A350 are tiny compared to the DC-10, MD-11 & L-1011.

Quoting g500 (Reply 29):
I must admit I used to think the L1011 was an ugly airplane then I started hearing how much pilots enjoyed flying it.

its growing on me

What?! There's no such thing as an ugly trijet. The L-1011 is one of the best looking aircrafts of all time. If I think an aircraft is ugly, I'll still think she's ugly regardless of how much pilots enjoy flying it!

Quoting BoeingGuy (Reply 33):
990 was faster than heck.

I think she was the second fastest passenger jet ever made, next to the Concorde.
 
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TZTriStar500
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Fri Apr 19, 2013 12:17 am

Quoting ChiGB1973 (Reply 37):
When I started at TZ in 2002, they had the largest fleet of L-1011s in the world at 16.

When I started a year earlier we had 19 and two left when we went out of business in '08...fond memories for sure.

Quoting lweber557 (Reply 40):
I flew on one as a passenger on a ATA military charter back in 2008. I sat in one of the last rows and I remember when we took off there was a loud thump and some of the overhead bins popped open. Freaked alot of us out but I'm still happy to have flown on one because I doubt I ever will have the opportunity to again.

Interesting....perhaps a number 2 engine compressor stall.
35 years of American Trans Air/ATA Airlines, 1973-2008. A great little airline that will not be soon forgotten.
 
cornishsimon
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Fri Apr 19, 2013 12:32 am

Still a gorgeous sight to see the RAF tristars knocking around. Brilliant machines.

Catch them in service while you still can !!


cs
 
tmoney
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Fri Apr 19, 2013 12:47 am

Quoting Transpac787 (Reply 16):
I'm not sure there's a plane in existence that even remotely gets close to 2:1 T:W ratio.

According to wiki F-16 has around 1.1 (in combat config) and F-22 has around 1.6 on empty.

I've never been on an L1011 so I'd never know how cool it is to have a lower galley. With today's IFE I don't think anybody would care about that anyways.

Tristar rosy-reminiscing day, eh? I'm surprised nobody brought up the EA401 incident. Then there are DL191, and SV163 and SV163. Now that is cray!
 
Archer
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RE: Why Was The L1011 So Popular With Pilots

Fri Apr 19, 2013 12:51 am

Answering Viscount 724
You are right. I was thinking DC-10.
There was a 500 version of the 1011. Maybe that's what I was thinking of.

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