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SAHSA
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Farewell, Red Tail: DC-9-41 LGA-DTW-MSY (pics/vid)

Tue Jan 04, 2011 11:13 am

Background

Last year, with the announcement that Delta would soon begin phasing out the 30 and 40 series of DC-9’s, I made it a mission to ride one of the last -40’s in service. My only other flight on the venerable DC-9 was in 1996. That drab, cramped, and dirty USAir DC-9-30 left much to be desired. Needless to say, I didn’t expect much from the DL (NW) -40. My mission began last August at LaGuardia airport bound for Detroit (MD-88) and eventually New Orleans (DC-9-41).


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Photo © Mark Kopczak
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Photo © Rudy Chiarello

Flight: DL 2631, LGA-DTW
Actual Departure: 11:17
Actual Arrival: 12:22
Flight Duration: 1h 05m
Aircraft: MD-88
Registration: N909DE

I was greeted by a very welcoming and cheerful crew. When boarding was completed I moved from my assigned seat to the aft section of the MD-88, which was completely empty. The rear cabin of this aircraft has a very private feel to it and it is, of course, very loud. This particular -88 looked brand spankin’ new, inside and out. The flight was fantastic and I spent much of the time chatting with the aft attendant. She even let me try one of the snack boxes which I don’t believe is offered on such a short flight.

Landing at DTW

Loved this -88

After a quick lunch and wandering around the terminal, I made my way to gate A9 and waited for her to arrive…



And here began the second and much anticipated part of my trip.

DC-9-41 Operated by:



N762NW was delivered new to SAS in 1969 and flew briefly under Thai International and Swissair colors before becoming a workhorse for Northwest. As I stated earlier, my previous DC-9 experience was not a pleasant one, and I did not expect the interior of this ship to be any better than the USAir one a decade prior. I was rather surprised to board a bright and clean aircraft with modern, large overhead bins. Nothing like my previous experience. My original seat was again in the aft, which I wanted specifically. When I got to the last row, I was greeted by an off-duty employee that wanted the row all to herself. She and the aft attendant bribed me with an empty exit row and free drink offer I couldn't refuse. And so, I settled in my seat and enjoyed the experience of this rare bird.



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Photo © Kjell Nilsson
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Photo © Frank C. Duarte Jr.


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Photo © Jose Carreno
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Photo © Kjell Nilsson


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Photo © Mark Abbott
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Photo © Frank Robitaille

Flight: DL 2627 DTW-MSY
Actual Departure: 15:50
Actual Arrival: 16:48
Flight Duration: 1h 58m
Aircraft: DC-9-41
Registration: N762NW



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Photo © Justin Cederholm

The best IFE, looking out the window!

Final approach to MSY

Classic




The flight was uneventful, I spent most of it looking out the window and trying not to look like a nut- snapping photographs of the cabin. I enjoyed my cocktail and extra legroom and before I knew it we were descending over Lake Pontchartrain. Landing was awesome with the roaring sound of the engines at full reverse thrust, something I rarely hear anymore. The crew was kind in letting me see the cockpit and take photos. Like my AA A300 flight the year prior, I’m glad I got to experience this classic aircraft right before its retirement.

Here is a short video of the landing. Sorry for the annoying “clicking” noise, bad camera.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=43MAwM9NQ1w

Farewell, NW Redtail and DC-9-41. Hope you all enjoyed and all comments are welcome.



[Edited 2011-01-04 03:16:19]
 
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rogerbcn
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Joined: Fri Sep 15, 2006 10:45 pm

RE: Farewell, Red Tail: DC-9-41 LGA-DTW-MSY (pics/vid)

Tue Jan 04, 2011 2:38 pm

Hola Sahsa!

Thanks for this TR.

Quoting SAHSA (Thread starter):
Aircraft: DC-9-41
Registration: N762NW

Catching this bird on one of her last flights is something must have been an awesome experience.

Glad you enjoyed it and thanks for sharing it!

Salut!

Roger
"At reise er at leve" H.C. Andersen (Travelling is Living)
 
buck3y3nut
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Joined: Fri Jul 28, 2006 1:38 am

RE: Farewell, Red Tail: DC-9-41 LGA-DTW-MSY (pics/vid)

Tue Jan 04, 2011 2:39 pm

Great report   Thanks a bunch for sharing it with us!!!
 
767747
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Joined: Wed Jan 26, 2005 10:08 am

RE: Farewell, Red Tail: DC-9-41 LGA-DTW-MSY (pics/vid)

Wed Jan 05, 2011 12:01 am

Good report! Nice to be able to get a lot of space on an MD-88 .. We just returned from a trip on one from ATL-MSP. Christmas In NC With Delta (MSP-RDU, AVL-MSP) (by 767747 Jan 1 2011 in Trip Reports) They're very roomy! Looks like you had some nice flights .. I'll be sad too when Delta retires the last DC-9 .. I've flown on many of them!

Thanks for sharing!

Matthew (767747)

[Edited 2011-01-04 16:05:38]
I love to fly!
 
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mke717spotter
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RE: Farewell, Red Tail: DC-9-41 LGA-DTW-MSY (pics/vid)

Wed Jan 05, 2011 7:01 am

Nice trip report and pictures. I saw one of those DC-9-40s at MKE a couple of days ago, but I didn't realize that their retirement date was so close.
Will you watch the Cleveland Browns and the Detroit Lions on Sunday? Only if coach Eric Mangini resigned after a loss.
 
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SAHSA
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Joined: Fri Jan 01, 2010 7:12 pm

RE: Farewell, Red Tail: DC-9-41 LGA-DTW-MSY (pics/vid)

Thu Jan 06, 2011 2:57 am

Quoting Rogerbcn (Reply 1):
Catching this bird on one of her last flights is something must have been an awesome experience.

Glad you enjoyed it and thanks for sharing it!

Salut!

Roger
Quoting buck3y3nut (Reply 2):
Thanks a bunch for sharing it with us!!!

It was my pleasure. I'd been sitting on this report since last August. Your feedback is appreciated.

Quoting 767747 (Reply 3):
They're very roomy! Looks like you had some nice flights .. I'll be sad too when Delta retires the last DC-9 .. I've flown on many of them!

Indeed. Especially in that section behind the L2 door/aft galley. The flight attendant told me it's like having your own little office to relax, given it's empty.

Quoting mke717spotter (Reply 4):
Nice trip report and pictures. I saw one of those DC-9-40s at MKE a couple of days ago, but I didn't realize that their retirement date was so close.

Thank you for the feedback. I rushed to get on one last summer because the rumor was that by fall they would be retired. After my flight I learned DL decided to keep them flying, to my understanding, well into 2011. So I was a bit surprised to see the retirement thread on here a few days ago. Next mission is the -50 which hopefully won't be as tricky.   
 
MSS658
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Joined: Sat Oct 16, 2010 8:16 am

RE: Farewell, Red Tail: DC-9-41 LGA-DTW-MSY (pics/vid)

Sat Jan 08, 2011 5:17 pm

Nice to see one of those old birds again, maybe an idea for a future trip for me  
Next trip report: Well worn A330s and Hassle free MUC transfer
 
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SAHSA
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Joined: Fri Jan 01, 2010 7:12 pm

RE: Farewell, Red Tail: DC-9-41 LGA-DTW-MSY (pics/vid)

Sun Jan 16, 2011 12:45 pm

Quoting MSS658 (Reply 6):
Nice to see one of those old birds again, maybe an idea for a future trip for me

I think this was the last of the DC-9-40's...But in the US we still have DL -50's which I hope to get on soon.

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