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Siren
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A Forgotten Piece Of McDonnell Douglas History

Wed Oct 21, 2015 11:28 pm

In late 1979, with the reputation of the DC-10 critically damaged due to American Airline's boneheaded maintenance screw-up resulting in the crash at ORD with American Airlines flight 191. The reputation of the DC-10 was already on shaky ground after the TK981, the cargo door failure in Paris that killed 340some people.

After American 191, while the NTSB was investigating, the FAA pulled the DC-10 airworthiness certificate and grounded the domestic fleet - and also issued an edict ruling that no foreign carrier could operate DC-10s into US airspace. Between the crash, with the graphic photo of the plane in its final downward spiral, and the fireball created a media sensation, and the DC-10 was a toxic asset.

Then, later in the year, to further complicate things, Air New Zealand 901 rammed into Mt. Erebus. Again, nothing to do with the plane, it was faultless in the disaster. But, McDonnell Douglas was in a bind... and had to launch a full fledged PR campaign.

The link below is part of the PR campaign they launched - these are promotional songs promoting McDonnell Douglas' DC commercial product line from December 1979, written and produced by Tom Bruner: http://www.tombruner.net/bio.cfm

My favorite by far is the disco version, but there are 3 versions with vocals, and one instrumental. The song itself is "Destination Comfort" - Nice play on "DC", no? Link below to download the promo in high quality mp3 format (320k), straight from the vinyl, and remastered. If anyone wants the WAV/lossless format, I can provide that, too - just contact me privately.  

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0ByvIWktauc9xbUdGUi1udGk1NjA/view?usp=sharing
 
OldAeroGuy
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RE: A Forgotten Piece Of McDonnell Douglas History

Wed Oct 21, 2015 11:57 pm

This is what I call a piece on McD forgotten history

http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=...c96163e45fc78f6def523o0&ajaxhist=0
Airplane design is easy, the difficulty is getting them to fly - Barnes Wallis
 
SpaceshipDC10
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RE: A Forgotten Piece Of McDonnell Douglas History

Thu Oct 22, 2015 12:05 am

Quoting Siren (Thread starter):
Then, later in the year, to further complicate things, Air New Zealand 901 rammed into Mt. Erebus. Again, nothing to do with the plane, it was faultless in the disaster. But, McDonnell Douglas was in a bind... and had to launch a full fledged PR campaign.

And sadly the third accident when Western Airlines 2605 crash-landed at MEX that year too. The airframe was faultless but still, three DC-10 crashed in six months.
 
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KLASM83
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RE: A Forgotten Piece Of McDonnell Douglas History

Thu Oct 22, 2015 12:39 am

Thank you so much, this is glorious. I know what I'll be listening to on the way to work!
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DL747400
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RE: A Forgotten Piece Of McDonnell Douglas History

Thu Oct 22, 2015 1:01 am

This is simply......... FASCINATING. I would love to see the print/video portion of this "Destination Comfort" campaign.

Interestingly, I've never heard of that tagline, nor have I ever seen any examples of it in late '70s and early '80s McDonnell Douglas advertising.

Has anyone else see the print/video? Any samples to share?
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Viscount724
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RE: A Forgotten Piece Of McDonnell Douglas History

Thu Oct 22, 2015 2:34 am

Quoting SpaceshipDC10 (Reply 2):
And sadly the third accident when Western Airlines 2605 crash-landed at MEX that year too. The airframe was faultless but still, three DC-10 crashed in six months.

That wasn't unusual in the 1970s (and earlier). Pan Am alone had 5 fatal 707 hull losses in 9 months in 1973/74 (including one terrorist attack).
 
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coronado
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RE: A Forgotten Piece Of McDonnell Douglas History

Thu Oct 22, 2015 3:06 am

At least NWA and FedEx were not blinded by these accidents and built up the largest pax and cargo fleets of DC-10's. Great aircraft!
The Original Coronado: First CV jet flights RG CV 990 July 1965; DL CV 880 July 1965; Spantax CV990 Feb 1973
 
mmo
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RE: A Forgotten Piece Of McDonnell Douglas History

Thu Oct 22, 2015 6:02 am

Quoting Siren (Thread starter):

After American 191, while the NTSB was investigating, the FAA pulled the DC-10 airworthiness certificate and grounded the domestic fleet - and also issued an edict ruling that no foreign carrier could operate DC-10s into US airspace.

Just a point of clarification. The DC-10 did not have it's type certificate withdrawn entirely. Only the -10 and -30 had the type certificate pulled, the -40 was not involved and was not the subject of the any changes.
If we weren't all crazy we'd all go insane!
 
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Buyantukhaa
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RE: A Forgotten Piece Of McDonnell Douglas History

Thu Oct 22, 2015 10:18 am

Quoting OldAeroGuy (Reply 1):

This is what I call a piece on McD forgotten history

http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=...c96163e45fc78f6def523o0&ajaxhist=0

Intersting, never knew about this one. And shockingly, no picture of it in the database or am I wrong?
I scratch my head, therefore I am.
 
JAAlbert
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RE: A Forgotten Piece Of McDonnell Douglas History

Thu Oct 22, 2015 1:25 pm

Hilarious - maybe MD would have received more (positive) exposure had it hired Frank Sinatra or another member of the rat pack to sing the song. Sammy Davis, Jr. would have been perfect!

I agree that the disco version is the best. I can see the backup singers in 70s SWA style hot pants grooving in the background!
 
classicjets
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RE: A Forgotten Piece Of McDonnell Douglas History

Thu Oct 22, 2015 3:50 pm

Quoting Buyantukhaa (Reply 8):
no picture of it in the database or am I wrong

Here are a couple:


View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © George N Dean
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Bill Blanchard - AirTeamImages



Wish I could have seen that fly!
 
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Siren
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RE: A Forgotten Piece Of McDonnell Douglas History

Thu Oct 22, 2015 4:07 pm

Quoting SpaceshipDC10 (Reply 2):
And sadly the third accident when Western Airlines 2605 crash-landed at MEX that year too. The airframe was faultless but still, three DC-10 crashed in six months.

I forgot about that one!

Quoting JAAlbert (Reply 9):
I agree that the disco version is the best. I can see the backup singers in 70s SWA style hot pants grooving in the background!

I'm working up an extended 'club mix' of the song, about 6-7 minutes in length, suitable for the dancefloor. My day job might be in technology, but music production and side compositions are a hobby - I just recently released a full fledged disco album with a coproducer friend.

In fact, that's how I discovered this - my disco hobby. I'm a disco historian and archivist, and know as much about disco as I do commercial aviation (a hell of a lot). This music came to me by way of my network of similar friends into my obscure little hobby - one local friend who lives in LA is particularly active with searching for undiscovered new material - he does it by going to estate sales, and thrift shops... and he's come up with some amazing items. Like this one. The record itself came from an estate sale in Pasadena. Who knows how many were produced? My guess is less than 200. Of those 200, probably only 10 still exist... and of those 10, only 2 or 3 of them are actually known about. The rest are sitting in closets or collections somewhere gathering dust as unidentified material. He knew of my love for commercial aviation - one of my usual meet spots with him is the In-n-Out on Sepulveda next to the LAX runway 24 approach path. He told me, "I got something you won't believe, and you'll love"... and he was right.

I wish there was more information out there on this "Destination Comfort" campaign, including how these songs were utilized by McD, any print or video advertising that went along with Destination Comfort
 
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Pilawt
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RE: A Forgotten Piece Of McDonnell Douglas History

Thu Oct 22, 2015 4:54 pm

I was a 20-year-old CFI at Bel-Air Aviation at Long Beach, California, right at the foot of the then-new control tower, watching the first DC-10s undergo flight test. Several of my primary students were McD-D engineers who had been working on the DC-10.

One memorable sight was the unpainted prototype making a max-effort landing on runway 30. There was noise, fuss and feathers, but that behemoth came to a stop before the intersection of 25L, just 3250 feet down the runway.

In August 1971, the first two DC-10s were delivered to customers, one to American and one to United. Douglas employees had the day off, and the airport perimeter was jammed with spectators. VIPs were shuttled out to the middle of the airport, close to runway 12/30, to watch the airplanes take off (we’d been watching DC-10s take off for months, so this was no big deal for us). Runway 12 was in use. The AA airplane taxied out from the Douglas ramp and took off, to the oohs and aahs of the assembled multitude. Then the UA airplane taxied out. It rolled majestically down the runway, rotated and … then the nose came back down, spoilers and reversers deployed, and the airplane coasted ignominiously down to the southeast end of the runway. VIPs cleared their throats and looked around nervously.

We heard later that the captain aborted the takeoff because his window was not properly latched. Thus began the DC-10’s star-crossed career.
 
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Buyantukhaa
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RE: A Forgotten Piece Of McDonnell Douglas History

Fri Oct 23, 2015 7:37 am

Quoting classicjets (Reply 10):
Here are a couple:

Ah I see, 3 pics in the dbase in total. I also found it on Google Maps by the way.
I scratch my head, therefore I am.
 
UA444
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RE: A Forgotten Piece Of McDonnell Douglas History

Fri Oct 23, 2015 8:15 am

Quoting Coronado (Reply 6):

Both UA and AA had larger DC-10 fleets than NW at their peak.
 
nema
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RE: A Forgotten Piece Of McDonnell Douglas History

Fri Oct 23, 2015 8:42 am

Quoting OldAeroGuy (Reply 1):
This is what I call a piece on McD forgotten history

http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=...ist=0

Four jet engines on such a small aircraft. Overpowered or what?
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Siren
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RE: A Forgotten Piece Of McDonnell Douglas History

Sat Oct 24, 2015 6:34 am

This took a little longer than I thought it would, but it ended up being a more complex job than I initially suspected. But, the results bear it out...

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0ByvIWktauc9xeWNOUUtBVUVzUDQ/view?usp=sharing

Behold, my extended remix of the disco version of Destination Comfort, now a proper dancefloor track, 5:25 in length. I've sped it up slightly, added some additional percussion, and for good measure, a rather subdued sound effect of a jet engine at two points... labeled as the Caprice Mondor remix. That is my 'stage name' - If you Google it, you'll find my other music work, which is mostly nudisco production (though I cringe at using the nudisco label, because we took great pains to record everything in the authentic 1970s way, use the 1970s synthesizers, real instruments where we could afford them - drums, guitars, percussion, etc, analogue recording, analogue mastering - the only concession to modernity was multitrack mixing on a computer), but I digress.

Enjoy.  
 
OldAeroGuy
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RE: A Forgotten Piece Of McDonnell Douglas History

Sat Oct 24, 2015 5:51 pm

Quoting nema (Reply 15):
Four jet engines on such a small aircraft. Overpowered or what?

No more than the Lockheed JetStar

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lockheed_JetStar
Airplane design is easy, the difficulty is getting them to fly - Barnes Wallis
 
SpaceshipDC10
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RE: A Forgotten Piece Of McDonnell Douglas History

Sat Oct 24, 2015 6:50 pm

Quoting Coronado (Reply 6):
At least NWA and FedEx were not blinded by these accidents and built up the largest pax and cargo fleets of DC-10's. Great aircraft!

Regarding NW, you can say they have had the largest fleets of either DC-10-30s and DC-10-40s in passenger variant, but all together (46) didn't match the fleets of UA (59) and AA (66) in airframes numbers.
 
jetstar
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RE: A Forgotten Piece Of McDonnell Douglas History

Sat Oct 24, 2015 7:06 pm

Quoting nema (Reply 15):
Four jet engines on such a small aircraft. Overpowered or what?

The McDonnell 119/220 was a business jet produced by the McDonnell Aircraft Corporation, before the marger with Douglas Aircraft in the mid-1950s. The McDonnell 119/220 was built in competition to Lockheed’s entry the JetStar for the US Air Force contract for a small utility jet transport which was awarded to Lockheed.

This prototype, the only airframe built was used for a few years by McDonnell as a company biz jet before being retired and donated to the Flight Safety Foundation's research facility in Phoenix, Arizona.

JetStar

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