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pwm2txlhopper
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Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Mon May 28, 2018 1:41 pm

I was checking flight activity at my local airports late last night when I noticed a retired AA MD-80, N50704, arrived at Portsmouth Pease, NH-PSM, from the boneyard in Roswell for a quick gas and go before departing to KEF around midnight local time EST.

This frame was retired in August 2016. It was delivered to AA in Oct 1989.

I don't think many thirty year old MD-80s see new life these days after retirement? I found the movement pretty interesting. Anybody have any idea where this frame is going? Some third world country in Africa, maybe?

Heads up to spotters in Europe. Likely SNN. I imagine this plane will be transiting through today or tomorrow.


(PSM-KEF isn't showing on the trackers, But this thing roared over my house climbing through FL20 last night when I heard the louder than usual high altitude noise and checked Flightradar to see what I'd just heard pass over.

https://flightaware.com/live/flight/N70504
 
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Mon May 28, 2018 2:14 pm

*Update.

Flying under call sign "Jet Test 8125"

https://flightaware.com/live/flight/JTN8125
 
727LOVER
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Mon May 28, 2018 4:43 pm

"We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope." - Martin Luther King, Jr.
 
bmibaby737
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Mon May 28, 2018 4:58 pm

727LOVER wrote:
https://www.planespotters.net/search?q=N70504
Whoever they are...LOL


They're the middle-man between seller and buyer, I believe.

Aircraft is going to Kiev, Ukraine
 
DeltaMD95
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Mon May 28, 2018 5:48 pm

It’s wonderful to see this aircraft beat the extremely long odds of ever leaving the boneyard for what appears to be an eventual return to service.
Did you know that a Boeing 717-200 is really a McDonnell Douglas MD95-30? ;-)
 
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Mon May 28, 2018 5:56 pm

I love seeing aircraft that you would have thought done and bound to be torn apart fly again.
 
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Bjm0517
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WelRe: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Mon May 28, 2018 5:59 pm

Nice to see an MD-80 he saved from the boneyard into what I’m guessing is a research and development aircraft for some tech of some sort.
 
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NYPECO
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Mon May 28, 2018 5:59 pm

Who flies these aircraft? There's not many MD-80s left, so where do the pilots come from?
 
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Mon May 28, 2018 6:01 pm

NYPECO wrote:
Who flies these aircraft? There's not many MD-80s left, so where do the pilots come from?


Delta probably let this company use their existing MD-80 pilots for this and if they intended to fly this plane to Johannesburg, the pilot can fly as passengers back to Atlanta.

Edit: it’s going to Ukraine, not Africa. As mentioned by memberlist.php?mode=viewprofile&u=30051
Last edited by Bjm0517 on Mon May 28, 2018 6:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
bmibaby737
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Mon May 28, 2018 6:02 pm

Bukovyna, an operator in Ukraine, took some American MD80s last year - so maybe another one for them?
 
32andBelow
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Mon May 28, 2018 6:29 pm

There are contract pilots that ferry aircraft around. Or it could be pilots from wherever it’s going.
 
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Mon May 28, 2018 6:30 pm

Bjm0517 wrote:
NYPECO wrote:
Who flies these aircraft? There's not many MD-80s left, so where do the pilots come from?


Delta probably let this company use their existing MD-80 pilots for this and if they intended to fly this plane to Johannesburg, the pilot can fly as passengers back to Atlanta.

Edit: it’s going to Ukraine, not Africa. As mentioned by memberlist.php?mode=viewprofile&u=30051


**Delta** lends out pilots? You’ve got to be kidding. Please tell me you’re joking, right?

The MD80 is hardly an “obscure” aircraft type. There are thousands of DC9-rated pilots worldwide, Delta is not involved in this transaction.
 
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Mon May 28, 2018 7:35 pm

There are several airlines (mainly charter outfits) in Ukraine, operating MD-8X series currently: Bukovyna, Bravo, YanAir, etc. All of them pale compared to Khors, who used to operate more than 30, at different points in their history, not to mention many DC-9.

So, plenty of pilots in Ukraine were type-rated for DC-9 and MD-80 series, I would guess finding pilots would be lesser of the problems operating the type. Spare parts scarcity seems to be becoming more and more of an issue.
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Mon May 28, 2018 7:42 pm

I wanted to make a joke about Max and Liz flying it back to their home planet, but I can't remember the name of it!
 
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Mon May 28, 2018 7:53 pm

Phosphorus wrote:
There are several airlines (mainly charter outfits) in Ukraine, operating MD-8X series currently: Bukovyna, Bravo, YanAir, etc. All of them pale compared to Khors, who used to operate more than 30, at different points in their history, not to mention many DC-9.

So, plenty of pilots in Ukraine were type-rated for DC-9 and MD-80 series, I would guess finding pilots would be lesser of the problems operating the type. Spare parts scarcity seems to be becoming more and more of an issue.


That's what I don't understand. There are lots of 737 classic aircraft flying around eastern Europe that would be easier to maintain. I'd rather buy one of the lower time WN 737-300's retired last year than an MD-80. Finding 737 parts shouldn't be so hard.
 
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Mon May 28, 2018 7:56 pm

32andBelow wrote:
There are contract pilots that ferry aircraft around. Or it could be pilots from wherever it’s going.


There are plenty of MD-8x rated pilots in Iran. Just sayin' :roll:
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Mon May 28, 2018 8:08 pm

flyingclrs727 wrote:
Phosphorus wrote:
There are several airlines (mainly charter outfits) in Ukraine, operating MD-8X series currently: Bukovyna, Bravo, YanAir, etc. All of them pale compared to Khors, who used to operate more than 30, at different points in their history, not to mention many DC-9.

So, plenty of pilots in Ukraine were type-rated for DC-9 and MD-80 series, I would guess finding pilots would be lesser of the problems operating the type. Spare parts scarcity seems to be becoming more and more of an issue.


That's what I don't understand. There are lots of 737 classic aircraft flying around eastern Europe that would be easier to maintain. I'd rather buy one of the lower time WN 737-300's retired last year than an MD-80. Finding 737 parts shouldn't be so hard.

Are there lots of 737 rated pilots available in Ukraine?

If not, it may be easier to solve the parts problem rather than the pilot problem.
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Mon May 28, 2018 8:27 pm

aviatorcraig wrote:
32andBelow wrote:
There are contract pilots that ferry aircraft around. Or it could be pilots from wherever it’s going.


There are plenty of MD-8x rated pilots in Iran. Just sayin' :roll:


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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Mon May 28, 2018 8:39 pm

Ukraine is as big as Texas. These might be a better airplane than Russian built narrowbodies for charter work within Ukraine and out of it to neighboring countries.
 
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Mon May 28, 2018 8:44 pm

Revelation wrote:
flyingclrs727 wrote:
Phosphorus wrote:
There are several airlines (mainly charter outfits) in Ukraine, operating MD-8X series currently: Bukovyna, Bravo, YanAir, etc. All of them pale compared to Khors, who used to operate more than 30, at different points in their history, not to mention many DC-9.

So, plenty of pilots in Ukraine were type-rated for DC-9 and MD-80 series, I would guess finding pilots would be lesser of the problems operating the type. Spare parts scarcity seems to be becoming more and more of an issue.


That's what I don't understand. There are lots of 737 classic aircraft flying around eastern Europe that would be easier to maintain. I'd rather buy one of the lower time WN 737-300's retired last year than an MD-80. Finding 737 parts shouldn't be so hard.

Are there lots of 737 rated pilots available in Ukraine?

If not, it may be easier to solve the parts problem rather than the pilot problem.


Lots of the airlines in eastern Europe fly 737-300's, 500's, and 800's. They tend to fly 800's on their longer flights where the fuel efficiency of the NG's has the most benefits.

I've been looking at flights between ODS and KGD for my wife to visit her grandmother in Kaliningrad. B2 flies 737-300's and 500's between ODS and MSQ. There has to be some sort of connecting flight, because Ukraine and Russia don't allow each others airlines to fly over each other's airspace or land at their airports. PS likewise has 733 and 735 aircraft, but can't serve KGD.

I'm pretty sure there is a sufficient pilot pool of 737 pilots in the area to support a charter airline flying 737 classics.
 
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Mon May 28, 2018 9:04 pm

Flighty wrote:
Ukraine is as big as Texas. These might be a better airplane than Russian built narrowbodies for charter work within Ukraine and out of it to neighboring countries.


I don't think any airline operating in Ukraine would want to fly passengers on Russian built aircraft. Besides safety, Ukraine is technically at war with Russia, so obtaining spare parts might be a problem.
 
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Mon May 28, 2018 9:45 pm

NYPECO wrote:
so where do the pilots come from?


Well, when a mommy pilot and a daddy pilot love each other very much AND THEY'RE MARRIED... Did your parents never have "the talk" with you

No need to discuss why or why not it would be good to operate in the Ukraine, dollars to donuts it's going to wind up in Iran anyway like has happened so many times before.
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RetiredNWA
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Mon May 28, 2018 10:39 pm

Braniff lends out the crew.
TWA trained them.

(The aircraft is operated by a certificated operation. They use THEIR pilots. Why is this so unbelievable to you? Research. Click. Find information. You can get to Jet Test’s website)....
 
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Mon May 28, 2018 10:53 pm

aviatorcraig wrote:
32andBelow wrote:
There are contract pilots that ferry aircraft around. Or it could be pilots from wherever it’s going.


There are plenty of MD-8x rated pilots in Iran. Just sayin' :roll:


:checkmark: :checkmark: :checkmark:

A good number of the MD80s flying in Iran today made their way there by way of Ukrainian companies.
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Tue May 29, 2018 2:55 pm

727LOVER wrote:
https://www.planespotters.net/search?q=N70504
Whoever they are...LOL


Aliens???

Sorry. Couldn't resist... Roswell and all....
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Tue May 29, 2018 3:03 pm

NYPECO wrote:
Who flies these aircraft? There's not many MD-80s left, so where do the pilots come from?

Errr... There are hundreds available over the next 2 years...

Pilots can be trained. If the country doesn't require the 1500 hour rule, training can be expedited.


To everyone else, year, Iran makes sense to me...
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Tue May 29, 2018 3:16 pm

bmibaby737 wrote:
Bukovyna, an operator in Ukraine, took some American MD80s last year - so maybe another one for them?


Maybe. The two that went to Bukovyna in 2017 went through the same US "middle man" that N70504 (and N7514A) were sold to two weeks ago....
 
G500Captain
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Tue May 29, 2018 3:30 pm

Would this ship maybe be a cargo conversion candidate?
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Tue May 29, 2018 4:34 pm

G500Captain wrote:
Would this ship maybe be a cargo conversion candidate?


It could have been, but that would have been done here before going overseas. More likely to the Ukraine for wet-lease to an Iranian operator.
 
flymia
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Tue May 29, 2018 6:51 pm

Its a U.S. registered airplane, so the pilots have to be FAA licensed. There are plenty of MD-8X pilots out there to get paid decent money to fly this plane to its next home.
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Tue May 29, 2018 6:51 pm

G500Captain wrote:
Would this ship maybe be a cargo conversion candidate?


No. The only MD-80 cargo conversion line is in the US, so sending it across the Atlantic is a sign it's not getting converted.
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G500Captain
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Wed May 30, 2018 2:19 am

Spacepope wrote:
G500Captain wrote:
Would this ship maybe be a cargo conversion candidate?


No. The only MD-80 cargo conversion line is in the US, so sending it across the Atlantic is a sign it's not getting converted.


Gotcha, I wasn’t sure if IAI or someone similar had the capability to do a conversion.
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Wed May 30, 2018 3:04 am

I’m kind of surprised an MD82 is getting another life. Surely there are plenty of the newer ex-TWA MD83s that are sitting there no?
Can someone shed some light on why this particular aircraft was chosen, say compared to another one such as a newer built MD83 that might be available?
 
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Wed May 30, 2018 3:55 am

G500Captain wrote:
Spacepope wrote:
G500Captain wrote:
Would this ship maybe be a cargo conversion candidate?


No. The only MD-80 cargo conversion line is in the US, so sending it across the Atlantic is a sign it's not getting converted.


Gotcha, I wasn’t sure if IAI or someone similar had the capability to do a conversion.

Afaik only AEI does the conversions. Small trickle mostly for VTM and VTS. http://www.aeronautical-engineers.com/p ... let-md-80/
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Wed May 30, 2018 4:43 am

I always find it interesting when people make comments like, "It's flying under the JET TEST callsign. Whoever they are."

It takes like 10 seconds to look something up, and then you might learn something.

Or, some of us know that Jet Test is the callsign for Jet Test and Transport, one of the larger companies that provide crews to ferry and test aircraft on a contract basis. They will also take care of all the paperwork necessary to make the move, and have the policies and procedures in place to handle the kinds of issues that come up with these kinds of aircraft -- much safer for everyone than just having a line pilot do it. This makes insurance companies happy, which makes sellers/buyers happy, and having someone else do the paperwork and fly the thing under their own callsign under their own ferry permit is a very clean way to accomplish the task -- which makes regulators happy. So there you go.
 
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Wed May 30, 2018 3:30 pm

trnswrld wrote:
I’m kind of surprised an MD82 is getting another life. Surely there are plenty of the newer ex-TWA MD83s that are sitting there no?
Can someone shed some light on why this particular aircraft was chosen, say compared to another one such as a newer built MD83 that might be available?


Could have been bought for spares. You do not need the newest MDs for that.
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Thu May 31, 2018 8:07 pm

RetiredNWA wrote:
Bjm0517 wrote:
NYPECO wrote:
Who flies these aircraft? There's not many MD-80s left, so where do the pilots come from?


Delta probably let this company use their existing MD-80 pilots for this and if they intended to fly this plane to Johannesburg, the pilot can fly as passengers back to Atlanta.

Edit: it’s going to Ukraine, not Africa. As mentioned by memberlist.php?mode=viewprofile&u=30051


**Delta** lends out pilots? You’ve got to be kidding. Please tell me you’re joking, right?

The MD80 is hardly an “obscure” aircraft type. There are thousands of DC9-rated pilots worldwide, Delta is not involved in this transaction.



It’s a possibility
 
mcg
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Thu May 31, 2018 8:34 pm

I'm curious, this airplane probably needs (or soon will need) some sort of heavy maintenance (I'm assuming AA used the airplane until it was close to a check, then parked it). Assuming it's going to either Ukraine or Iran, will it get this maintenance? Again assuming the airplane is going to either Ukraine or Iran, will Boeing continue to provide technical support for it?
 
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Fri Jun 01, 2018 8:52 am

This specific aircraft probably has a good maintenance status. Meaning recent overhaul, lots of cycles left on engines, landing gear etc.
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Fri Jun 01, 2018 12:16 pm

Bjm0517 wrote:
RetiredNWA wrote:
Bjm0517 wrote:

Delta probably let this company use their existing MD-80 pilots for this and if they intended to fly this plane to Johannesburg, the pilot can fly as passengers back to Atlanta.

Edit: it’s going to Ukraine, not Africa. As mentioned by memberlist.php?mode=viewprofile&u=30051


**Delta** lends out pilots? You’ve got to be kidding. Please tell me you’re joking, right?

The MD80 is hardly an “obscure” aircraft type. There are thousands of DC9-rated pilots worldwide, Delta is not involved in this transaction.



It’s a possibility

So is winning the lottery, along with Kristen Bell banging on my door demanding we go on a road trip to Peru in the next 15 minutes.

Let's try to focus on actual LIKELY posssibilites.
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DALCE
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Fri Jun 01, 2018 12:53 pm

This one will probably end up in Iran, good PR for Mr. Trump :) :)
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Fri Jun 01, 2018 1:21 pm

mcg wrote:
I'm curious, this airplane probably needs (or soon will need) some sort of heavy maintenance (I'm assuming AA used the airplane until it was close to a check, then parked it). Assuming it's going to either Ukraine or Iran, will it get this maintenance? Again assuming the airplane is going to either Ukraine or Iran, will Boeing continue to provide technical support for it?

With AA retiring so many in a short time span it may not be near a heavy check. It could be just up for a C level check. Any ways, most leasing companies or new operators will do a pretty extensive check on a used airframe before it goes into service. Even if to just verify the condition of the plane and to verify all time tracked items and AD compliance. Plus there may be interior changes and exterior paint.
 
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Fri Jun 01, 2018 2:28 pm

On a related question, a lot of AA MD-80s are from the mid-late 90s. They still have many hours and cycles left in them. If they can be acquired for cheap, are they pretty profitable aircraft to operate?

Only downside I can see is higher fuel consumption than 737NG, but you are saving money on the front end.
 
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Fri Jun 01, 2018 2:37 pm

kaitak744 wrote:
On a related question, a lot of AA MD-80s are from the mid-late 90s. They still have many hours and cycles left in them. If they can be acquired for cheap, are they pretty profitable aircraft to operate?

Only downside I can see is higher fuel consumption than 737NG, but you are saving money on the front end.

Another downside will be maintenance costs.
 
Pawlat
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Fri Jun 01, 2018 3:24 pm

To illustrate the discussion - I have a recent picture of N70504. She was at KEF 31/05/2018.
This picture does not show but the fuselage shines :)

Image
 
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Phosphorus
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Fri Jun 01, 2018 4:26 pm

Polot wrote:
kaitak744 wrote:
On a related question, a lot of AA MD-80s are from the mid-late 90s. They still have many hours and cycles left in them. If they can be acquired for cheap, are they pretty profitable aircraft to operate?

Only downside I can see is higher fuel consumption than 737NG, but you are saving money on the front end.

Another downside will be maintenance costs.


And here is a big question -- it is alluded that MD-8X is on the death watch, worldwide, due to dwindling spare parts supply.
There is a short list of certain parts that are more critically short than others, and it's these parts, that will force, apparently, the early retirement of MD-8X series.
Certified manufacturers are underworked, so when they do get orders for new spare parts, they have to charge extra to offset the fixed costs for the time they sat idle.
Looks like this "extra" is high enough to doom the aircraft.

Well...
Now, if an MD-80 is operated by a carrier in a sanctioned jurisdiction (like Iran), where both support from OEM (Boeing), and parts from certified suppliers, are legally impossible to procure, and FAA is unable to enforce its ban for "counterfit aircraft parts"... How difficult are those parts to make, in a local machine shop?
If local machines shops are competent enough (and they seem to be, having kept Iran Air and Iranian Air Force fleets of US-built aircraft flying through decades of sanctions), it could extend MD-8X life there beyond what's legally possible anywhere else in the world, no?
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Dalmd88
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Fri Jun 01, 2018 6:54 pm

The MD80 isn't really in a spare parts crisis. The main driver for their retirement in the US is ADS-B upgrade.

It is mandated for Jan 1,2020. For most other aircraft the conversion isn't a big deal. The MD80 it is a very costly upgrade. The current FMS can not be upgraded and needs to be scrapped. It just does not have the horsepower or the capacity to work in ADS-B. The aircraft has a serious electric power capacity problem for a new FMS system. It requires a total gut job of the avionics and the downstairs electrical bus. Kind of like the electrician saying to you, "If you want a new central A/C I have to put in a whole new electric panel and rewire your house." For the MD80 it just is not worth the major investment when there are very good replacement aircraft around.
 
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Fri Jun 01, 2018 6:56 pm

pwm2txlhopper wrote:
I was checking flight activity at my local airports late last night when I noticed a retired AA MD-80, N50704, arrived at Portsmouth Pease, NH-PSM, from the boneyard in Roswell for a quick gas and go before departing to KEF around midnight local time EST.

This frame was retired in August 2016. It was delivered to AA in Oct 1989.

I don't think many thirty year old MD-80s see new life these days after retirement? I found the movement pretty interesting. Anybody have any idea where this frame is going? Some third world country in Africa, maybe?

Heads up to spotters in Europe. Likely SNN. I imagine this plane will be transiting through today or tomorrow.


(PSM-KEF isn't showing on the trackers, But this thing roared over my house climbing through FL20 last night when I heard the louder than usual high altitude noise and checked Flightradar to see what I'd just heard pass over.

https://flightaware.com/live/flight/N70504


Some third world country in Africa??? Really? Singling out Africa as the likely destination presents a slight essence of WN agent at Denver or Roseanne Barr. Also is DL and ATL a third world environment since they love old second hand planes, not to mention other so called first world nations.
BA JM EA GK PA VS AA SN HP CO W7 WN NW DL QQ UA AC US LH LX OS JL QF QR PG MH CX U2 EK 9W UK TP VY VN PC LO OK OZ UL SQ LA

707 727 L10 732-NG 741 742 743 744 752 753 762 763 772 773 787 DC8 DC9 DC10 M80 M11 100 AB3 310 318 319 320 321 332 333 342 343 380
 
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Spacepope
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Sat Jun 02, 2018 1:44 pm

It looks like another one has gone to the same place. N532SV was delivered from MIA to KBP as well.
The last of the famous international playboys
 
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TWA302
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Re: Retired AA MD-80 , N70504, has left Roswell for a new life?

Sat Jun 02, 2018 3:52 pm

Pawlat wrote:
To illustrate the discussion - I have a recent picture of N70504. She was at KEF 31/05/2018.
This picture does not show but the fuselage shines :)

Image


Thanks! I was wondering who would post a pic of her in KEF.

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