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Boeing 707 Experience

Fri May 21, 1999 6:35 am

What was it like to fly on the Boeing 707? Did the 707 have air vents and overhead lights? Or was the 707 old fashioned? Thanks

Colin Kumpunen
Posts: 2153
Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 8:02 am

RE: Boeing 707 Experience

Fri May 21, 1999 8:01 am

The Boeing 707s I was on had the air vents and reading lights. They had open overhead racks, and the vents and lights were located in passenger service units which protruded down from the bottom of the overhead racks. The oxygen masks were located in these units also. Seat pitch was greater than it is now. And there were two movie screens in coach and one in first class which showed "wide screen movies" on 16mm film rather than on videotape which is used today. These screens pulled down from the ceiling, and if you needed to get up during the movie, you had to duck to get under the screens. The 707s were very nice. I flew on 707s on Air France, Lufthansa, and TWA.

Bob Bradley
Richmond, VA

RE: Boeing 707 Experience

Fri May 21, 1999 8:45 pm

I flew twice on a B707 in 1986 from the Belgian charter company TEA (Trans European Airways). It was a B707-328B with registration OO-TYC.
The plane had air vents, reading lights, closed overhead racks and comfortable seats... Somewhat the same descriptions as those from L1011 in his topic above (with that exception that there wasn't a moviescreen).
A fantastic plane !

David L
Posts: 8551
Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 2:26 am

RE: Boeing 707 Experience

Fri May 21, 1999 11:00 pm

As well as the 707, I flew in other airliners in the 60s and, of the ones I was old enough to remember, they all had reading lights, air vents and call buttons. I don't remember ever seeing open overhead racks either.
User avatar
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Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 5:55 pm

RE: Boeing 707 Experience

Fri May 21, 1999 11:21 pm


I flew on a TAROM Romanian 707 back in 1979.

I cannot remember much about the flight but remember only two things............. running from the terminal to the stairs going to the back entrance and also looking out of the window seeing the two engines.

Pity thats all I can remember.

Aberdeen, Scotland
Posts: 1006
Joined: Sun Mar 25, 2007 7:56 am

Overhead Bins And Air Vents

Sat May 22, 1999 12:09 am

The descriptions of the 707 interior brought back nice memories. I want to point out to AA MD-80 that air vents, reading lights and call buttons were pretty standard, even on the early jets. (The original DC-8s had a specially-designed seat where these were all built in to the seat structure and not attached overhead). It seems that starting with the DC-10, some of the widebodies did not have air vents as standard equipment.

FYI, the 747 was the first jet to have enclosed overhead bins, and to make the existing narrowbodies more competetive in the early 1970s, airlines stripped out the old interiors and put in the 'widebody look'. I remember that American (for the 707) and Braniff (for the 727) made a big deal of this in 1971/72.

Eventually, the enclosed overheads became standard on most new a/c off the production line. In fact, I believe enclosed bins are now required by regulation for any new aircraft design.
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Joined: Thu May 20, 1999 6:04 am

RE: Boeing 707 Experience

Sat May 22, 1999 1:11 am

I have enjoyed just the mere thought of the 707. I have an old encycolpedia here, that has a picture of a pan am 707-121A(turbojet - jt3) inflight over the atlantic from idewald to paris. I think this is probably the most elegent jetliner that ever lived. How i would love to have something like that! You know, maybe its not all that rediculous either. Old 707s aren't worth much, and, i suppose now that the compulsory stage 3 regulations are almost here, we could probably very soon pick up a 707 for next to nothing. It would have to be a 707-320C that was still capible of carrying pax.

There is a stage 3 hush kit now for the JT3D, but, i believe its expensive. Although one flying is better, i would be very happy if i could just sit in it on the ground and (with a ground power unit running) breath in all of that classic styling. The stuff dreams are made of. Anybody know what i mean?
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Joined: Sat May 22, 1999 3:49 am

RE: Boeing 707 Experience

Sat May 22, 1999 3:51 am

Dear Colin.

The 707 is a special aircraft, and now that is almost extinct is even more special. I had the oportunity to fly 3 times in a 707:

PP-VJH/Varig - LIS/AMS on 80/09/02
CS-TBC/TAP - LHR/LIS on 82/09/17
CS-TBG/TAP - GVA/LIS on 83/01/03

The Varig flight was one of my best flights I had, Varig at that time was excelent in service and I remember that we were flying economy and we had menu, and other special things. The interiors at that time were standard with lights and air vents above. The TAP ones were already with "wide-body" look interiors but still with the same facilities has the Varig one. The 707 in flight was an excelent aircraft with good performance and when you were flying ahead the wing it was neat to see those 2 engines in the wing, we dont have nothing like that now!!! That's why everytime I hear those engines "singing" its like Mozart to my hears, last time I heard them was last winter when I saw one 707 from Ejercito D'Aire ( Spanish Air Force ) taking-off from Faro airport.
David L
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Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 2:26 am

RE: Breathing In The Styling

Sat May 22, 1999 5:25 am

Oh yes... wouldn't have to be a 707 though. I'd settle for a VC-10, CV-880 or Britannia as well.
Posts: 503
Joined: Wed May 19, 1999 7:07 am

RE: Boeing 707 Experience

Sat May 22, 1999 8:47 am

I flew for the first time ever on a 707 in the late 70s. That experience remains with me to this day. It was only a three and a half hour flight but I enjoyed every minute of it. I also flew the 720 which is very similar, but to me there was nothing like the 707. Even now it remains my favourite plane.
Posts: 390
Joined: Sat May 22, 1999 8:47 am

RE: Boeing 707 Experience

Sun May 23, 1999 1:30 am

I must have come to Lebanon, Middle East Airlines was still using 707 and 720 last year for carying passengers! The last time I've flown in one was in 1994 Beirut-Istanbul, it looks like modern airplanes except it makes a lot of noise. It's a pretty aircraft, the wings look great. Of course there is now high-tech devices (phones, TVs, Radio...).

RE: Boeing 707 Experience

Sun May 23, 1999 6:05 am

I flew on a 707-300B in '87 from LA to SLC. It was a charter airline called SkyWorld (formerly known as Denver Ports-of-Call) It was truly a great experience for someone who grew up in the wide body era. The plane had closed overhead bins, but it retained the passenger service unit that protruded from the overhead. It was the fastest flight I ever made to Utah, and the highest, 41,000 feet. I'd really love another chance to fly on one

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