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UA857
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Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Tue Aug 07, 2018 7:40 pm

How come UA and NW order the 747-400 and DL, AA, and CO didn’t?
 
codc10
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Tue Aug 07, 2018 7:49 pm

The simple answer is NRT, and in the case of UA, Australia.

UA and NW had large Pacific connecting complexes at NRT, and the 744 had the volume and range that hub structure demanded. The 747 was, at the time, the only economically-viable option on the nonstop Australia routes, since the SP (the A340-500 of its day) burned too much fuel and had too few seats to generate adequate returns by the late 1980s.

AA/DL/CO would have lost their respective shirts flying the 744 in their networks in the 1990s.
 
UA857
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Tue Aug 07, 2018 8:03 pm

What was DL, AA, and CO's Asian presence like in the 1990s?
 
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TWA772LR
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Tue Aug 07, 2018 8:10 pm

Ironically in the movie Jurassic Park, in the scene where Hammond is talking to the paleontologists and investors, you see a CO A300 buzzing the beach, as well as a 744 in CO colors in the slideshow.

UA857 wrote:
What was DL, AA, and CO's Asian presence like in the 1990s?

CO had Micronesia, and in the late 90s/early 00s had started IAH/EWR-NRT and EWR-HKG. IAH-NRT was meant to connect to COs Latin network and as reportedly been a slam dunk from day 1, even going double daily briefly in the early 2010s.

DL tried their PDX hub to Asia and it didnt go well, same with AA from SJC, but not aure why AA didnt make that work. They would've given UA a good run for their money in California with hubs in LAX and SJC.
Last edited by TWA772LR on Tue Aug 07, 2018 8:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.
When wasn't America great?


The thoughts and opinions shared under this username are mine and are not influenced by my employer.
 
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SteveXC500
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Tue Aug 07, 2018 8:10 pm

Didn't fit their fleet strategies.
 
BoeingGuy
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Tue Aug 07, 2018 8:17 pm

SteveXC500 wrote:
Didn't fit their fleet strategies.


With all due respect to the OP, there is a thread on this topic about once a month.

Their route structure and fleet needs did not need an airplane that big.
 
IAHWorldflyer
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Tue Aug 07, 2018 8:27 pm

1) As said above, in the early '90's, only UA and NW had strong Pacific networks. AA was focused on Latin America, with Europe secondary, and DL was building a large trans-Atlantic network that was more about frequency than 1 large daily flight. CO was a smaller player, and didn't have the money for a large widebody fleet.
2) US based airlines even 20 years ago had multiple hubs from which to launch daily intercontinental flights.European and Asian carriers usually have a single hub, think LHR for BA, CDG for AF, or SIN for SQ, so they can put 350 people on a single flight. AA would in the 90's have served an overseas destination from JFK. ORD, DFW, and maybe LAX. So a 250+ seat 777 meets that spread out demand.
 
gwrudolph
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Tue Aug 07, 2018 8:27 pm

TWA772LR wrote:
Ironically in the movie Jurassic Park, in the scene where Hammond is talking to the paleontologists and investors, you see a CO A300 buzzing the beach, as well as a 744 in CO colors in the slideshow.

UA857 wrote:
What was DL, AA, and CO's Asian presence like in the 1990s?

CO had Micronesia, and in the late 90s/early 00s had started IAH/EWR-NRT and EWR-HKG. IAH-NRT was meant to connect to COs Latin network and as reportedly been a slam dunk from day 1, even going double daily briefly in the early 2010s.

DL tried their PDX hub to Asia and it didnt go well, same with AA from SJC, but not aure why AA didnt make that work. They would've given UA a good run for their money in California with hubs in LAX and SJC.


AA wasn't going to give UA a run for their money with LAX and SJC to NRT. First of all, UA had significant connectivity at both the SFO and NRT ends. Second, they offered 2x daily 744s to NRT at time along with ORD, SEA, JFK, EWR, LAX, and HNL 744 service. Third, AA was not as big at LAX as they are today (big, but not as big as now and certainly smaller than UA), and finally, AA was trying to do SJC with a lame MD11 which often had to stop and fuel up in Oakland before its Tpac crossing.
 
N766UA
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Tue Aug 07, 2018 8:48 pm

Same reason they didn't order the Concorde, Cessna 172, F-15, or the Space Shuttle.

Sorry, but these broad questions are a little silly. "Why didn't they order the 747" effectively presupposes that there was every reason for them to have done so, but for some reason they decided not to. That's not the case. Airlines don't order lots of airplanes and the reason why is always the same: they didn't want to.
 
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TWA772LR
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Tue Aug 07, 2018 8:51 pm

gwrudolph wrote:
TWA772LR wrote:
Ironically in the movie Jurassic Park, in the scene where Hammond is talking to the paleontologists and investors, you see a CO A300 buzzing the beach, as well as a 744 in CO colors in the slideshow.

UA857 wrote:
What was DL, AA, and CO's Asian presence like in the 1990s?

CO had Micronesia, and in the late 90s/early 00s had started IAH/EWR-NRT and EWR-HKG. IAH-NRT was meant to connect to COs Latin network and as reportedly been a slam dunk from day 1, even going double daily briefly in the early 2010s.

DL tried their PDX hub to Asia and it didnt go well, same with AA from SJC, but not aure why AA didnt make that work. They would've given UA a good run for their money in California with hubs in LAX and SJC.


AA wasn't going to give UA a run for their money with LAX and SJC to NRT. First of all, UA had significant connectivity at both the SFO and NRT ends. Second, they offered 2x daily 744s to NRT at time along with ORD, SEA, JFK, EWR, LAX, and HNL 744 service. Third, AA was not as big at LAX as they are today (big, but not as big as now and certainly smaller than UA), and finally, AA was trying to do SJC with a lame MD11 which often had to stop and fuel up in Oakland before its Tpac crossing.

The MD11 was on its way out and AA had the Reno Air network to play with. They totally could've made a play in California to become a solid number 2. But enough about that because we're getting OT.
When wasn't America great?


The thoughts and opinions shared under this username are mine and are not influenced by my employer.
 
SteelChair
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Tue Aug 07, 2018 8:52 pm

It took the airlines a long time to realize that VLA were a plague upon the industry. US airlines had realized it by the late 80s, with the exception of the relative few that had a need for such aircraft. In the present day and age, pretty much everyone except Emirates has realized it.
Last edited by SteelChair on Tue Aug 07, 2018 9:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
airbazar
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Tue Aug 07, 2018 8:59 pm

SteelChair wrote:
It took the airlines a long time to realize that VLA were a plague upon the industry. UsS airlines had realized it by the late 80s, with the exception of the relative few that had a need for such aircraft. In the present say and age, pretty much everyone except Emirates has realized it.

Never seen a greater pile of nonsense on these forums and that is saying a lot.
Until the 90's if you wanted range you had to have a VLA. It's not that airlines finally realized that VLA's weren't for them, it's more like manufacturers finally were able to build smaller aircraft with the necessary range. As for "only Emirates" non-sense, I won't even bother. The list of airlines operating A380's, 747's, and 77Ws, if far too long.
 
Runway28L
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Tue Aug 07, 2018 9:07 pm

Shortly after the B744 became available, didn't an economic recession occur in the early 90's?

Probably not a direct factor, but it likely was an underlying one.
 
DarthLobster
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Tue Aug 07, 2018 9:21 pm

DL and AA both banked on the MD-11, while CO was focused on sewing it’s guts back together after Lorenzo.
 
tpaewr
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Tue Aug 07, 2018 9:38 pm

DarthLobster wrote:
DL and AA both banked on the MD-11, while CO was focused on sewing it’s guts back together after Lorenzo.



Nominated for most succinct answer!
 
deltal1011man
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Tue Aug 07, 2018 9:41 pm

BoeingGuy wrote:
SteveXC500 wrote:
Didn't fit their fleet strategies.


With all due respect to the OP, there is a thread on this topic about once a month.

Their route structure and fleet needs did not need an airplane that big.

Also something that seems to be missed is that Delta and American went in hard for the MD11. I have heard Delta got 3 M11s for the price of 2 744s.


I do wonder if those two knew the issues that would come with the M11 if they wouldn’t have gone with a smaller 744 fleet instead.
 
gwrudolph
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Tue Aug 07, 2018 9:41 pm

Runway28L wrote:
Shortly after the B744 became available, didn't an economic recession occur in the early 90's?

Probably not a direct factor, but it likely was an underlying one.


Regardless of the economy I don't think AA, DL, or CO had the need for the 744 with their small Tpac networks. As others have said, in its day, the 744 was the only real alternative for some of those longer and thicker UA and NW routes.

The big downturn was right around 1999/2000 and by that time, there was a suitable 744 Tpac alternative online--the 777ER. Thats when the 744 really started coming into question
 
SteelChair
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Tue Aug 07, 2018 10:21 pm

airbazar wrote:
SteelChair wrote:
It took the airlines a long time to realize that VLA were a plague upon the industry. UsS airlines had realized it by the late 80s, with the exception of the relative few that had a need for such aircraft. In the present say and age, pretty much everyone except Emirates has realized it.

Never seen a greater pile of nonsense on these forums and that is saying a lot.
Until the 90's if you wanted range you had to have a VLA. It's not that airlines finally realized that VLA's weren't for them, it's more like manufacturers finally were able to build smaller aircraft with the necessary range. As for "only Emirates" non-sense, I won't even bother. The list of airlines operating A380's, 747's, and 77Ws, if far too long.


I think that we basically agree though I'm not sure that it's rubbish.

767-300ER kicked off the ETOPS era in grand fashion in 1989-90. (Yes i know it started on 1985 woth the 762 but it really took off woth the 300ER). It was capable of 6,200nm routes. A340 was available in 1993 and 777-200 not a vla was available in 1995. All three of these significantly ate into the existing 747 Market

777-300 ER came along a little bit later and is arguable whether is a vla or not but that also 8in to the 747 Market in my humble opinion

A380 has been a program failure it will never repay the investment to start the program is totally dependent upon one customer and is now limping along at 1 airplane a month production hardly a success

72% of all 777x orders are to ME3 carriers which I would describe as distressed and state supported. most established airlines have not ordered the airplane it is the beneficiary not only of state-supported ME3 airlines but also 10 billion dollars in tax cuts from the city of Seattle in the state of Washington that program is in serious jeopardy in my humble opinion because once again most airlines, especially in the USA, don't want it.

I see a combination of smaller long range twins (as you stated) and most airlines being risk averse to all the seats of a VLA. Tat risk aversion isnt foing away.....748 is DOA and 380, 777x in jeopardy. Long live the 350 and 787, the largest SUCCESFUL commercial airliners in the forseeable future.
 
fightforlove
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Tue Aug 07, 2018 10:32 pm

Continental didn't need such a big plane and were pushing to streamline their fleet to help fix their finances at the time.

AA and Delta were focused on frequencies and had very limited TPAC service at the time.
 
UA857
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Wed Aug 08, 2018 3:00 am

Then how come Delta and American ordered the MD-11 instead?
 
Max Q
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Wed Aug 08, 2018 3:30 am

fightforlove wrote:
Continental didn't need such a big plane and were pushing to streamline their fleet to help fix their finances at the time.

AA and Delta were focused on frequencies and had very limited TPAC service at the time.




There were many discussions regarding possible acquisition of a small fleet of 744’s
at Continental to replace the ex-PE 747 classics on some routes and open new Pacific routes



It wasn’t like it was never considered and
we came close to getting a few used examples



However, as stated it would have been tough to finance such a large aircraft post Lorenzo in the economic wreckage he left behind and by the time G Bethune came along and we were on our feet again a new fleet of triple 7’s were far more suitable at that time
The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.


GGg
 
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OzarkD9S
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Wed Aug 08, 2018 7:48 am

UA857 wrote:

Then how come Delta and American ordered the MD-11 instead?


If the MD-11 had met its performance goals, it would have been a great long haul aircraft for those airlines that needed range but without the capacity of the 744. MD-11 had a promising future but by the time the shortcomings were addressed the 777 was up-and-coming. MDD dropped the ball big time with the MD-11.
"True, I talk of dreams,
Which are the children of an idle brain." -Mercutio
 
LAXLHR
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Wed Aug 08, 2018 8:14 am

DarthLobster wrote:
DL and AA both banked on the MD-11, while CO was focused on sewing it’s guts back together after Lorenzo.


Brilliant!!
BA IB ET JM EA GK PA VS AA SN HP CO W7 WN NW DL UA AC US LH LX OS JL QF QR WY MH CX U2 EK 9W UK TP VY VN 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 330s 340s 350 380
 
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STT757
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Wed Aug 08, 2018 8:53 am

CO operated four 747-200s as late as 1999/2000. They operated GUM-NRT, GUM-HNL and GUM -SFO. But not 744s
Eastern Air lines flt # 701, EWR-MCO Boeing 757
 
Ryanair01
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Wed Aug 08, 2018 10:02 am

UA857 wrote:
How come UA and NW order the 747-400 and DL, AA, and CO didn’t?


Basically the 747-400 was popular with operators who had 12+hour sectors out of Southeast Asia. Those type of routes were heavily regulated at that time, NW was established and UA bought PA's established network so they benefited from protection.

AA, CO and DL were 'late entrants' and stuck with less desirable routes, like DL out of Portland, or CO's island hopping network. For example in 1990 you could fly Sydney to LA via one or two stops with AA & CO or non stop with QF & UA. The later two needed the 747-400 but AA & CO could use DC10s or 741s. The less desirable routes DL, AA and CO had were either too small to justify a 747 (e.g. AA at San Jose) or in many cases didn't need the range, or both. As mentioned above AA & DL did buy the smaller MD11, a move they regretted because the promised range and fuel burn didn't materialise so they dumped them swiftly.

Open Skies changed the competitive landscape, but by then technology had moved on from the 747-400 to 777-200ER.
 
phatfarmlines
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Wed Aug 08, 2018 11:19 am

STT757 wrote:
CO operated four 747-200s as late as 1999/2000. They operated GUM-NRT, GUM-HNL and GUM -SFO. But not 744s


I don't remember CO ever flying GUM-Mainland US nonstop.
 
Max Q
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Wed Aug 08, 2018 11:20 am

STT757 wrote:
CO operated four 747-200s as late as 1999/2000. They operated GUM-NRT, GUM-HNL and GUM -SFO. But not 744s




The latter was not a non stop service !
GUM-SFO service stopped in HNL
The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.


GGg
 
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STT757
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Wed Aug 08, 2018 11:43 am

Max Q wrote:
STT757 wrote:
CO operated four 747-200s as late as 1999/2000. They operated GUM-NRT, GUM-HNL and GUM -SFO. But not 744s




The latter was not a non stop service !
GUM-SFO service stopped in HNL


Yes, GUM-HNL-SFO.
Eastern Air lines flt # 701, EWR-MCO Boeing 757
 
codc10
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Wed Aug 08, 2018 12:25 pm

At the very end, the CO 747s were mostly NRT-HNL-LAX.
 
fightforlove
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Wed Aug 08, 2018 3:08 pm

Ryanair01 wrote:
UA857 wrote:
How come UA and NW order the 747-400 and DL, AA, and CO didn’t?


Basically the 747-400 was popular with operators who had 12+hour sectors out of Southeast Asia. Those type of routes were heavily regulated at that time, NW was established and UA bought PA's established network so they benefited from protection.

AA, CO and DL were 'late entrants' and stuck with less desirable routes, like DL out of Portland, or CO's island hopping network. For example in 1990 you could fly Sydney to LA via one or two stops with AA & CO or non stop with QF & UA. The later two needed the 747-400 but AA & CO could use DC10s or 741s. The less desirable routes DL, AA and CO had were either too small to justify a 747 (e.g. AA at San Jose) or in many cases didn't need the range, or both. As mentioned above AA & DL did buy the smaller MD11, a move they regretted because the promised range and fuel burn didn't materialise so they dumped them swiftly.

Open Skies changed the competitive landscape, but by then technology had moved on from the 747-400 to 777-200ER.


Were the A340s that Continental had on order in the late 80s planned to open up new TPAC non stops?
 
vorellanaj
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Wed Aug 08, 2018 3:24 pm

AA and DL at the time had very limited TPAC network. AA could have bought 744 as MD11 early replacement increasing LHR capacity (LHR slots were acquired from TWA) and 763ER engine commonality, if AA had ordered 763ER with FADEC engines. But Crandall disliked to risk with quads.

KE was the airline that replace MD11 with more 744 for passenger service.
The aviation world will be bored if only twins fly with commercial passengers. I love 747s
 
MRYapproach
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Wed Aug 08, 2018 9:04 pm

gwrudolph wrote:
TWA772LR wrote:
Ironically in the movie Jurassic Park, in the scene where Hammond is talking to the paleontologists and investors, you see a CO A300 buzzing the beach, as well as a 744 in CO colors in the slideshow.

UA857 wrote:
What was DL, AA, and CO's Asian presence like in the 1990s?

CO had Micronesia, and in the late 90s/early 00s had started IAH/EWR-NRT and EWR-HKG. IAH-NRT was meant to connect to COs Latin network and as reportedly been a slam dunk from day 1, even going double daily briefly in the early 2010s.

DL tried their PDX hub to Asia and it didnt go well, same with AA from SJC, but not aure why AA didnt make that work. They would've given UA a good run for their money in California with hubs in LAX and SJC.


AA wasn't going to give UA a run for their money with LAX and SJC to NRT. First of all, UA had significant connectivity at both the SFO and NRT ends. Second, they offered 2x daily 744s to NRT at time along with ORD, SEA, JFK, EWR, LAX, and HNL 744 service. Third, AA was not as big at LAX as they are today (big, but not as big as now and certainly smaller than UA), and finally, AA was trying to do SJC with a lame MD11 which often had to stop and fuel up in Oakland before its Tpac crossing.


why stop in Oakland on the way from SFO to Asia? Seems weird. Longer runway?
 
MRYapproach
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Wed Aug 08, 2018 9:05 pm

gwrudolph wrote:
TWA772LR wrote:
Ironically in the movie Jurassic Park, in the scene where Hammond is talking to the paleontologists and investors, you see a CO A300 buzzing the beach, as well as a 744 in CO colors in the slideshow.

UA857 wrote:
What was DL, AA, and CO's Asian presence like in the 1990s?

CO had Micronesia, and in the late 90s/early 00s had started IAH/EWR-NRT and EWR-HKG. IAH-NRT was meant to connect to COs Latin network and as reportedly been a slam dunk from day 1, even going double daily briefly in the early 2010s.

DL tried their PDX hub to Asia and it didnt go well, same with AA from SJC, but not aure why AA didnt make that work. They would've given UA a good run for their money in California with hubs in LAX and SJC.


AA wasn't going to give UA a run for their money with LAX and SJC to NRT. First of all, UA had significant connectivity at both the SFO and NRT ends. Second, they offered 2x daily 744s to NRT at time along with ORD, SEA, JFK, EWR, LAX, and HNL 744 service. Third, AA was not as big at LAX as they are today (big, but not as big as now and certainly smaller than UA), and finally, AA was trying to do SJC with a lame MD11 which often had to stop and fuel up in Oakland before its Tpac crossing.


why stop in Oakland on the way from SJC to Asia? Seems weird. Longer runway?
 
gwrudolph
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Wed Aug 08, 2018 9:40 pm

MRYapproach wrote:
gwrudolph wrote:
TWA772LR wrote:
Ironically in the movie Jurassic Park, in the scene where Hammond is talking to the paleontologists and investors, you see a CO A300 buzzing the beach, as well as a 744 in CO colors in the slideshow.


CO had Micronesia, and in the late 90s/early 00s had started IAH/EWR-NRT and EWR-HKG. IAH-NRT was meant to connect to COs Latin network and as reportedly been a slam dunk from day 1, even going double daily briefly in the early 2010s.

DL tried their PDX hub to Asia and it didnt go well, same with AA from SJC, but not aure why AA didnt make that work. They would've given UA a good run for their money in California with hubs in LAX and SJC.


AA wasn't going to give UA a run for their money with LAX and SJC to NRT. First of all, UA had significant connectivity at both the SFO and NRT ends. Second, they offered 2x daily 744s to NRT at time along with ORD, SEA, JFK, EWR, LAX, and HNL 744 service. Third, AA was not as big at LAX as they are today (big, but not as big as now and certainly smaller than UA), and finally, AA was trying to do SJC with a lame MD11 which often had to stop and fuel up in Oakland before its Tpac crossing.


why stop in Oakland on the way from SJC to Asia? Seems weird. Longer runway?


Yes I believe that's why. Guessing they used OaK vs SFO so they could get in/out quicker
 
United1
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Wed Aug 08, 2018 10:42 pm

MRYapproach wrote:
gwrudolph wrote:
TWA772LR wrote:
Ironically in the movie Jurassic Park, in the scene where Hammond is talking to the paleontologists and investors, you see a CO A300 buzzing the beach, as well as a 744 in CO colors in the slideshow.


CO had Micronesia, and in the late 90s/early 00s had started IAH/EWR-NRT and EWR-HKG. IAH-NRT was meant to connect to COs Latin network and as reportedly been a slam dunk from day 1, even going double daily briefly in the early 2010s.

DL tried their PDX hub to Asia and it didnt go well, same with AA from SJC, but not aure why AA didnt make that work. They would've given UA a good run for their money in California with hubs in LAX and SJC.


AA wasn't going to give UA a run for their money with LAX and SJC to NRT. First of all, UA had significant connectivity at both the SFO and NRT ends. Second, they offered 2x daily 744s to NRT at time along with ORD, SEA, JFK, EWR, LAX, and HNL 744 service. Third, AA was not as big at LAX as they are today (big, but not as big as now and certainly smaller than UA), and finally, AA was trying to do SJC with a lame MD11 which often had to stop and fuel up in Oakland before its Tpac crossing.


why stop in Oakland on the way from SFO to Asia? Seems weird. Longer runway?


The MD-11s could not take off with enough fuel to make NRT from SJCs runway when the temperature hit a certain point....so they would make a gas an go in OAK enroute.
I know the voices in my head aren't real but sometimes their ideas are just awesome!!!
 
BoeingGuy
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Thu Aug 09, 2018 1:55 am

United1 wrote:
MRYapproach wrote:
gwrudolph wrote:

AA wasn't going to give UA a run for their money with LAX and SJC to NRT. First of all, UA had significant connectivity at both the SFO and NRT ends. Second, they offered 2x daily 744s to NRT at time along with ORD, SEA, JFK, EWR, LAX, and HNL 744 service. Third, AA was not as big at LAX as they are today (big, but not as big as now and certainly smaller than UA), and finally, AA was trying to do SJC with a lame MD11 which often had to stop and fuel up in Oakland before its Tpac crossing.


why stop in Oakland on the way from SFO to Asia? Seems weird. Longer runway?


The MD-11s could not take off with enough fuel to make NRT from SJCs runway when the temperature hit a certain point....so they would make a gas an go in OAK enroute.


That was before SJC lengthened their runways. To my understanding it was the DC-10s that had to stop in OAK sometimes. I thought the MD-11 could do it non-stop always. That was about when the runways were lengthened.
 
United1
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Thu Aug 09, 2018 2:38 am

BoeingGuy wrote:
United1 wrote:
MRYapproach wrote:

why stop in Oakland on the way from SFO to Asia? Seems weird. Longer runway?


The MD-11s could not take off with enough fuel to make NRT from SJCs runway when the temperature hit a certain point....so they would make a gas an go in OAK enroute.


That was before SJC lengthened their runways. To my understanding it was the DC-10s that had to stop in OAK sometimes. I thought the MD-11 could do it non-stop always. That was about when the runways were lengthened.


I did a bit of research and you are right that was the 10 that had to stop. After the runway was lengthened the 10 could do the route non stop as could the 11 that replaced it.

I don't have the performance data on whether the 11 could have made it non-stop with the shorter runways...
I know the voices in my head aren't real but sometimes their ideas are just awesome!!!
 
JAAlbert
Posts: 1982
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Thu Aug 09, 2018 2:57 am

gwrudolph wrote:
. . . AA was trying to do SJC with a lame MD11 which often had to stop and fuel up in Oakland before its Tpac crossing.


Wait a moment here -- AA flew an MD-11 29 miles from SJC to OAK to fuel up before heading out over the Pacific??? SJC's runways are longer than OAK's (according to wikipedia) and on a clear day you can probably see the two airports from one another. Why would AA do this?
 
United1
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Thu Aug 09, 2018 3:18 am

JAAlbert wrote:
gwrudolph wrote:
. . . AA was trying to do SJC with a lame MD11 which often had to stop and fuel up in Oakland before its Tpac crossing.


Wait a moment here -- AA flew an MD-11 29 miles from SJC to OAK to fuel up before heading out over the Pacific??? SJC's runways are longer than OAK's (according to wikipedia) and on a clear day you can probably see the two airports from one another. Why would AA do this?


SJCs runway was lengthened in 2001 to 11k feet...it was a wee bit shorter before that.
I know the voices in my head aren't real but sometimes their ideas are just awesome!!!
 
BoeingGuy
Posts: 6313
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Thu Aug 09, 2018 3:25 am

JAAlbert wrote:
gwrudolph wrote:
. . . AA was trying to do SJC with a lame MD11 which often had to stop and fuel up in Oakland before its Tpac crossing.


Wait a moment here -- AA flew an MD-11 29 miles from SJC to OAK to fuel up before heading out over the Pacific??? SJC's runways are longer than OAK's (according to wikipedia) and on a clear day you can probably see the two airports from one another. Why would AA do this?


It would help answer your question if you'd read the previous replies. ;) It was just explained in the last several replies.

And no, you cannot see the two airports from each other. Not even close. You can see OAK and SFO from the same vantage points on a clear day though.
 
JayinKitsap
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Thu Aug 09, 2018 3:29 am

LAXLHR wrote:
DarthLobster wrote:
DL and AA both banked on the MD-11, while CO was focused on sewing it’s guts back together after Lorenzo.


Brilliant!!


I was thinking "Didn't Lorenzo suck Eastern dry". Looked it up, he sucked the life force out of many airlines: Continental Airlines, Eastern Air Lines, Frontier Airlines, New York Air and People Express Airlines. This was the earlier Frontier that died in 86, the name was used again in 94. It was the era of the conglomerate, being a large mishmash of companies that were often not related, was supposed to be the greatest thing since French Bread. I watched J & L steel (a big customer of mine back then) get sucked dry, LTV was the biggest and quite messy bankruptcy back then. Vought was spun back out in that BK.

"Frank Lorenzo has etched an indelible mark on the U.S. airline business. Whether he is a union buster, an opportunist, or a keen businessman depends on one's perspective, but his mark has been deep and may be lasting," wrote James Ott on Lorenzo's departure from Continental.[114]

Lorenzo is frequently described as "anti-union", particularly after the bankruptcy at Continental, which voided the union contracts in the successful effort to save the airline from liquidation and permanent job losses.[64][78] At Texas International Air, he demanded wage concessions in 1974 to return the company to profitability, and one union went on strike; when he began hiring replacement workers, other unions at the company joined the strike. After four months, the unions returned to work and TIA went on to reach profitability in 1976.[115] Before his takeover of Eastern was completed, his efforts to build a sustainable, profitable airline model were criticized, with opponents saying his companies' profits were earned "on the backs of broken labor contracts, extremely low wages and harsh work rules."[116]
 
JAAlbert
Posts: 1982
Joined: Tue Jan 31, 2006 12:43 pm

Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Thu Aug 09, 2018 1:07 pm

BoeingGuy wrote:
JAAlbert wrote:
gwrudolph wrote:
. . . AA was trying to do SJC with a lame MD11 which often had to stop and fuel up in Oakland before its Tpac crossing.


Wait a moment here -- AA flew an MD-11 29 miles from SJC to OAK to fuel up before heading out over the Pacific??? SJC's runways are longer than OAK's (according to wikipedia) and on a clear day you can probably see the two airports from one another. Why would AA do this?


It would help answer your question if you'd read the previous replies. ;) It was just explained in the last several replies.

And no, you cannot see the two airports from each other. Not even close. You can see OAK and SFO from the same vantage points on a clear day though.


Thank you for your helpful comment and suggestion. In fact I did read each of the prior posts before asking my question and the two I now see had not been posted when I sent mine. Perhaps you could consider that before your next helpful comment.
The point of my post was the surprise at flying an MD-11 29 miles. That still surprises me.
 
gwrudolph
Posts: 425
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Thu Aug 09, 2018 1:27 pm

BoeingGuy wrote:
United1 wrote:
MRYapproach wrote:

why stop in Oakland on the way from SFO to Asia? Seems weird. Longer runway?


The MD-11s could not take off with enough fuel to make NRT from SJCs runway when the temperature hit a certain point....so they would make a gas an go in OAK enroute.


That was before SJC lengthened their runways. To my understanding it was the DC-10s that had to stop in OAK sometimes. I thought the MD-11 could do it non-stop always. That was about when the runways were lengthened.


Thet didn't fly the DC10 from SJC to NRT to my knowledge
 
User avatar
Slug71
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Thu Aug 09, 2018 1:44 pm

Runway28L wrote:
Shortly after the B744 became available, didn't an economic recession occur in the early 90's?

Probably not a direct factor, but it likely was an underlying one.


Same with the A380 and 747-8i.
 
klwright69
Posts: 2709
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Sun Aug 12, 2018 3:51 pm

Max Q is actually correct. CO was thinking about reacquiring some 747's in the late 90's. I am not sure what model.

They saw a need for a few of their high volume routes such as IAH-London, IAH-HNL for instance. But for reasons listed they didn't do it.

Since CO was considering bringing it back, this is not a "stupid" question at all.
 
speedbird52
Posts: 1013
Joined: Sat Nov 26, 2016 5:30 am

Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Thu Jan 24, 2019 3:06 am

SteelChair wrote:
airbazar wrote:
SteelChair wrote:
It took the airlines a long time to realize that VLA were a plague upon the industry. UsS airlines had realized it by the late 80s, with the exception of the relative few that had a need for such aircraft. In the present say and age, pretty much everyone except Emirates has realized it.

Never seen a greater pile of nonsense on these forums and that is saying a lot.
Until the 90's if you wanted range you had to have a VLA. It's not that airlines finally realized that VLA's weren't for them, it's more like manufacturers finally were able to build smaller aircraft with the necessary range. As for "only Emirates" non-sense, I won't even bother. The list of airlines operating A380's, 747's, and 77Ws, if far too long.


I think that we basically agree though I'm not sure that it's rubbish.

767-300ER kicked off the ETOPS era in grand fashion in 1989-90. (Yes i know it started on 1985 woth the 762 but it really took off woth the 300ER). It was capable of 6,200nm routes. A340 was available in 1993 and 777-200 not a vla was available in 1995. All three of these significantly ate into the existing 747 Market

777-300 ER came along a little bit later and is arguable whether is a vla or not but that also 8in to the 747 Market in my humble opinion

A380 has been a program failure it will never repay the investment to start the program is totally dependent upon one customer and is now limping along at 1 airplane a month production hardly a success

72% of all 777x orders are to ME3 carriers which I would describe as distressed and state supported. most established airlines have not ordered the airplane it is the beneficiary not only of state-supported ME3 airlines but also 10 billion dollars in tax cuts from the city of Seattle in the state of Washington that program is in serious jeopardy in my humble opinion because once again most airlines, especially in the USA, don't want it.

I see a combination of smaller long range twins (as you stated) and most airlines being risk averse to all the seats of a VLA. Tat risk aversion isnt foing away.....748 is DOA and 380, 777x in jeopardy. Long live the 350 and 787, the largest SUCCESFUL commercial airliners in the forseeable future.

Wasn't the 1990s also when a lot of older 747 -100s and -200s were reaching retirement? (Whoops! Just saw the age of this thread)
 
User avatar
FlyCaledonian
Posts: 1974
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Sat Jan 26, 2019 4:59 pm

klwright69 wrote:
Max Q is actually correct. CO was thinking about reacquiring some 747's in the late 90's. I am not sure what model.

They saw a need for a few of their high volume routes such as IAH-London, IAH-HNL for instance. But for reasons listed they didn't do it.

Since CO was considering bringing it back, this is not a "stupid" question at all.

Possibly some Asian carriers might have sold some if it was around the time of the Asian financial crisis, e.g. a bit like QF picking up three birds from Malaysian and Asiana. Would have been surprised if they were looking at Classics given the fleet modernisation underway with the 767-200/767-400/777-200.
Let's Go British Caledonian!
 
United1
Posts: 4153
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2003 9:21 am

Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Sat Jan 26, 2019 6:44 pm

IIRC when AA was in the running for the authority to open an ORD-NRT flight they approached Canadian about buying their 744 fleet (which CP couldn't really afford or need at the time.) Once AA lost their bid to UA they canceled that deal.

I believe that was Crandalls short term solution for AA while they waited on their MD-11 fleet to be delivered.

Also I just noticed this is like a 6 month old thread...oops :)
I know the voices in my head aren't real but sometimes their ideas are just awesome!!!
 
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PacoMartin
Posts: 904
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Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Mon Jul 08, 2019 10:38 am

UA857 wrote:
How come UA and NW order the 747-400 and DL, AA, and CO didn’t?


I think if you look at the entire order history of the B747 (all models) it is obvious that pre-ETOPS all the airlines needed the B747 if they wanted to fly TATL. After ETOPS-120 the only airlines who still needed 4 engine jets were the two that were flying Trans Pacific. Northwest only ordered 26 B747s after 1980. The primary US airline to use the jet was United airlines.

3. Sep. 1966 12 TWA
3. Oct. 1966 3 United Airlines
1. Nov. 1966 10 American Airlines
11. Nov. 1966 10 Northwest Airlines
15. Nov. 1966 5 United Airlines
12. Jun. 1967 4 Eastern Air Lines
26. Jun. 1967 3 Delta Air Lines
25. Jul. 1967 13 United Airlines
18. Oct. 1967 3 TWA
10. Jan. 1968 1 Braniff Airlines
21. Jun. 1968 2 Delta Air Lines
23. Jan. 1969 8 Pan Am World Airways
17. Mar. 1969 5 Northwest Airlines
19. Mar. 1969 1 United Airlines
18. Apr. 1969 6 American Airlines
27. Mar. 1972 3 World Airways, Inc.
10. Sep. 1973 5 Pan Am World Airways
30. Oct. 1974 3 Northwest Airlines
18. May. 1976 1 Northwest Airlines
9. Dec. 1976 1 Pan Am World Airways
9. Jul. 1977 2 Pan Am World Airways
15. Dec. 1977 2 Pan Am World Airways
11. Jan. 1978 1 Braniff Airlines
13. Mar. 1978 6 Northwest Airlines
22. May. 1978 2 Braniff Airlines
30. Jun. 1978 2 Pan Am World Airways
17. Oct. 1978 3 TWA
26. Oct. 1978 2 Transamerica Airlines
18. Dec. 1978 1 Braniff Airlines
1. Feb. 1979 1 Northwest Airlines
1. Feb. 1979 1 Northwest Airlines
23. Oct. 1979 1 Transamerica Airlines
--------------------------------------------------------------- ETOPS program began to collect data
16. May. 1983 2 Northwest Airlines
16. May. 1983 1 Northwest Airlines
28. Sep. 1983 2 Northwest Airlines
27. Aug. 1985 3 Northwest Airlines
22. Oct. 1985 10 Northwest Airlines
7. Nov. 1985 2 United Airlines
7. Nov. 1985 4 United Airlines
27. Oct. 1986 2 Northwest Airlines
12. May. 1987 11 United Airlines
12. Oct. 1989 4 Northwest Airlines
15. Oct. 1990 7 United Airlines
1. Feb. 1994 2 United Airlines
20. Apr. 1995 2 United Airlines
9. Jan. 1996 2 United Airlines
22. Aug. 1996 12 United Airlines
7. Jul. 1997 3 United Airlines
14. Apr. 1998 1 United Airlines
16. Jan. 2001 2 Northwest Airlines

Also, the last major order for a B747 was a dozen jets ordered on 22. Aug. 1996. It was fairly delusional to think that you could sell an A380 to a US airline.
 
Weatherwatcher1
Posts: 486
Joined: Sun Mar 03, 2019 5:14 pm

Re: Why didn’t DL, AA, and CO order the 747-400?

Mon Jul 08, 2019 1:35 pm

DarthLobster wrote:
DL and AA both banked on the MD-11, while CO was focused on sewing it’s guts back together after Lorenzo.


Continental ordered the A340 when AA and DL went for the MD-11. It was during bankruptcy when CO was focused on sewing its guts together that they cancelled the order and kept their 747-200s and DC10s flying until 767s and 777s finally replaced them.

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