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Gasman
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Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Mon Aug 08, 2016 10:18 am

I was thinking about the list of failed, out-competed, or just plain uninspiring aircraft over the years. Here's my list, in no particular order.

The Bae-146

Really, what were they thinking? All the cost and maintenance of four engines with none of the added benefits of power, performance, and range. Marketed as a quiet "whisper jet" the passenger experience was anything but serene. And that's before you mention the repeated engine failures and occasional toxic fumes in the cabin because its four engines which were designed for helicopters weren't designed to fly at high altitude. Does anyone lament the passing of this aircraft? I seriously doubt it.

Concorde

Now this one will be somewhat controversial. Okay it broke new ground and captured the imagination blah blah, but building it nearly crippled the British economy, only a handful were sold, it was unacceptably noisy, woefully inefficient and patently unsafe. The extortionate cost of travelling on the thing gave you an experience that would barely pass for Y+ today. All it had its favour was it was quick.

VC-10

Built to compete with the 707 and DC-8. Both those aircraft are still laughing. Thanks for coming.

L-1011

Another one that might be a bit controversial, but this aircraft deserves our scorn if for no other reason than it brought the RB-211 into the world. One of which was positioned in the rear of the fuselage, making that area of the aircraft noisier than the engine room of the Titanic. And even for a 1970's trijet, its range was pathetic. Basically, you'd be stupid to have bought this aircraft instead of a DC-10-30.

777-200 (non ER version)

Basically a DC-10 with two engines, was this aircraft anything other than an utterly bland testbed for the 777 fuselage? Recycle bin for me.
 
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aerorobnz
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Mon Aug 08, 2016 1:04 pm

I lament all types I never flew. I have a penchant for Douglas/McDonnell Douglas and trijets in general.

I never liked the il-86 or the BAC 1-11 to look at, and the DC 10-10 minus the middle gear always used to look wrong compared to the perfectly proportioned -30/40.

I'm of the opinion that all types have added something to aviation history, rose tinted specs perhaps, but a very good friend of mine has flown some 7000 sectors on almost every western and russian commercial jet and prop and subtype from 707 onwards He often makes comment about some of the weird and wonderful features, safety functiions that were once new and innovative but are now on all aircraft or which have been and gone and the prime candidates were on some of the lesser known companies.
 
KentB27
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Mon Aug 08, 2016 4:27 pm

I disagree. All types of aircraft have contributed in some way to aviation history, good or bad.

-The Bae-146 is still the most successful British designed and made airliner so far.
-The Concorde is still the only supersonic jet that successfully and reliably carried passengers in commercial service in significant numbers.
-The VC-10 still has the fastest time to cross the Atlantic for a sub-sonic jet, and it is sure is a beautiful aircraft.
-The L-1011 was way ahead of it's time. It was the first widebody aircraft to be certified for CAT lllc autolandings and had a highly advanced autopilot and navigation system for the time.
-The 777-200 was the first airliner to be designed entirely on computers. That's a pretty big deal.

I would hardly say that any these examples you listed are aircraft that history should forget. Not liking these types of aircraft is a whole different story. All you're doing is pointing out flaws with these aircraft or your opinion on them. That's fine, but that doesn't mean that we should sweep all of these aircraft under the rug and forget about them.
Last edited by KentB27 on Fri Aug 12, 2016 8:57 pm, edited 2 times in total.
 
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TWA772LR
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Mon Aug 08, 2016 6:02 pm

CRJ-100/200. 'Nuff said.
 
Gasman
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Mon Aug 08, 2016 11:15 pm

Another one I should have mentioned is the MD-11. I see this as the "Sean Lennon" of commercial airliners - notable only for its heritage without which it would be utterly irrelevant.

The DC-10 was a revolutionary wide bodied trijet, ahead of its time in terms of its systems with excellent performance and drop dead gorgeous looks. It made a major mark on the aviation world throughout the 1970's and 1980's (albeit not always in a good way). The MD-11 inherited its mother's looks; but aside from that fell woefully short of its performance targets which were only eventually met after some serious re-tweaking - by which time the A340 and not long after, the 777 were obviously better options. Did the MD-11 pioneer anything particularly memorable? Not that I can think of. With this aircraft, McDonnell Douglas missed an opportunity to improve on an already excellent platform, and paid the price.
 
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XAM2175
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Tue Aug 09, 2016 8:40 am

My word Gasman, I'd hate to see you let loose in a library with a authority to burn books.

"I think the cover's ugly. Burn it."
"Writing it took the author thirty years and ruined their life. Burn it."
"Typo on page 307. Burn it now."
"It's a great book but its success positioned the author to write this one here, which had characters I did't like. Burn them both."
 
KentB27
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Tue Aug 09, 2016 3:15 pm

Gasman wrote:
Another one I should have mentioned is the MD-11. I see this as the "Sean Lennon" of commercial airliners - notable only for its heritage without which it would be utterly irrelevant.

The DC-10 was a revolutionary wide bodied trijet, ahead of its time in terms of its systems with excellent performance and drop dead gorgeous looks. It made a major mark on the aviation world throughout the 1970's and 1980's (albeit not always in a good way). The MD-11 inherited its mother's looks; but aside from that fell woefully short of its performance targets which were only eventually met after some serious re-tweaking - by which time the A340 and not long after, the 777 were obviously better options. Did the MD-11 pioneer anything particularly memorable? Not that I can think of. With this aircraft, McDonnell Douglas missed an opportunity to improve on an already excellent platform, and paid the price.


I can actually agree with this one. The MD-11 really didn't bring anything new to the table and airlines didn't like it because it failed to meet performance targets. There's a reason why it only lasted 8 months longer than the DC-10 in scheduled passenger service. The MD-11 hasn't been a total failure though because a lot of them are getting successful second lives as freighters. That is the MD-11's niche.

Funny thing is, warts and all, the MD-11 is still one of my all time favorite aircraft for the looks alone. I can't deny however, that it wasn't a commercial success, didn't perform as promised, and is a perfect example of everything that was wrong with McDonnell Douglas at the time.
 
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767333ER
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Tue Aug 09, 2016 4:00 pm

737-900 non-ER. What a joke compared to the 737-900ER. I guess it was just a way to comfortably fit the max pax load of the 737-800 without jamming them in as much, but it totally was outdone by the ER. I would like to say any variant of the 737-900, but that's not quite fair.
 
Gasman
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Tue Aug 09, 2016 8:25 pm

767333ER wrote:
737-900 non-ER. What a joke compared to the 737-900ER. I guess it was just a way to comfortably fit the max pax load of the 737-800 without jamming them in as much, but it totally was outdone by the ER. I would like to say any variant of the 737-900, but that's not quite fair.

Agreed. It's an example of an aircraft, like the MD-11 that slips under the "forgettable" radar by nature of the lineage it's associated with. The 737 is such an aviation behemoth that it's difficult to notice that not all the variants have been particularly well inspired. The same could be said of the A318.

Which brings us on to the 748i. Now, it's possible that a seismic shift in aviation economics could see a rush of orders for this aircraft; but it doesn't seem likely. If remembered at all, it will be as a somewhat sad, slightly half-hearted finale to an aviation icon.
 
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767333ER
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Tue Aug 09, 2016 10:57 pm

Gasman wrote:
Agreed. It's an example of an aircraft, like the MD-11 that slips under the "forgettable" radar by nature of the lineage it's associated with. The 737 is such an aviation behemoth that it's difficult to notice that not all the variants have been particularly well inspired. The same could be said of the A318.

Which brings us on to the 748i. Now, it's possible that a seismic shift in aviation economics could see a rush of orders for this aircraft; but it doesn't seem likely. If remembered at all, it will be as a somewhat sad, slightly half-hearted finale to an aviation icon.

The A318 will be remembered for how goofy it looks, but that's about it. I think the 748i will be remembered because it is yet again anther beautiful member if the 747 family, but also because it is essentially the end of such an iconic plane. I think some at Boeing wish the world could forget how big of a commercial failure it has been though.

Bae-146/Avro RJ: Glad they are going. Who in their right mind makes a 4 holer regional jet not to mention how noisy the engines are for what little thrust they make.

Concorde: This will be remembered for being a supersonic jet that actually transported people and actually worked. It will also be remembered for its looks. It wont be remembered for being much of a success as it and its concept ultimately failed.

VC-10: Will be remembered for looks. Fast plane, but is the 727 and the CV880/990.

L1011: Very advanced for its days. It will be remembered by us for looks, but again ultimately was a bit of a failure. How many are flying right now compared to DC-10s and MD-11s?

777-200 non-ER: much like the 737-900 non-ER or 777-300 non-ER, it was replaced by the ER version because the ER was the same or better at everything. The ER replaced the non-ER.
 
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VirginFlyer
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Wed Aug 10, 2016 11:57 pm

Here I was thinking this would be about some fails in aircraft design that clearly weren't going to be a good idea from the start, such as these two:

Baade 152
Image

Shanghai Y-10
Image

V/F
 
Gasman
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Thu Aug 11, 2016 12:40 am

VirginFlyer wrote:
Here I was thinking this would be about some fails in aircraft design that clearly weren't going to be a good idea from the start, such as these two:V/F


It's intended as an entirely subjective, fun discussion about commercial aircraft that have failed to excite on an emotional level, failed to push boundaries on a technological level and/or failed to perform economically. But yes, your two examples are definitely valid! :)

In spite of the comments above, the 777-200 (non ER) is still very much on my list. It was evolutionary rather than revolutionary. Uninspiring to look at. The cockpit section was taken from the 767. Didn't have range worth writing home about. Okay, it might have been the first aircraft to have been designed entirely on computer; but this too was simply evolutionary - saying "they designed the wings, fuselage AND the wheels using Microsoft Paint" isn't enough to cement a place in history in my book. In fact, in my opinion the only two versions of the 777 that deservedly capture hearts & minds are the 77W and 772LR.

Another interesting one is the A310. This was/is a great aircraft. Along with the the 767, it was key in establishing medium haul widebody travel. It was efficient, pretty enough to look at, sold in decent numbers and throughout the 80's and 90's was commonplace in US and European routes. It was a good aircraft in its own right, and not simply a scaled down A300. Yet it seems to have disappeared completely from consciousness, even amongst enthusiasts. Weird.
 
fixfox
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Thu Aug 11, 2016 6:49 am

Have you ever heard about the Fokker F28 Fellowship? The plowed the skies all over the world bringing passengers from small, sometimes under developed airports to larger hubs. When the became old and to thirsty most operators replaced them with F70/F100's or other regional jets.
 
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N14AZ
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Thu Aug 11, 2016 7:57 am

fixfox wrote:
]The Bae-146[

fixfox wrote:
Fokker F28 Fellowship


I am confused, how can you mention these two aircraft in a thread about "aircraft that history should probably forget"?

As mentioned above regarding the Bae146, they were fairly succesfull and very common, at least in Europe.
 
jetwet1
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Thu Aug 11, 2016 8:31 am

Gasman wrote:

Concorde

Now this one will be somewhat controversial. Okay it broke new ground and captured the imagination blah blah, but building it nearly crippled the British economy, only a handful were sold, it was unacceptably noisy, woefully inefficient and patently unsafe. The extortionate cost of travelling on the thing gave you an experience that would barely pass for Y+ today. All it had its favour was it was quick.



Can you explain how it was unsafe ?

For me, the 318 and 736
 
Gasman
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Thu Aug 11, 2016 9:40 pm

jetwet1 wrote:
Gasman wrote:

Concorde

Now this one will be somewhat controversial. Okay it broke new ground and captured the imagination blah blah, but building it nearly crippled the British economy, only a handful were sold, it was unacceptably noisy, woefully inefficient and patently unsafe. The extortionate cost of travelling on the thing gave you an experience that would barely pass for Y+ today. All it had its favour was it was quick.



Can you explain how it was unsafe ?

For me, the 318 and 736


You don't have to look terribly far:

http://www.theguardian.com/uk/2000/aug/ ... orde.world

It also few extremely few passenger hours over the course of its existence yet had a major hull loss will 100% fatalities. Statistically that puts it at one of the most dangerous civilian aircraft in history, probably only surpassed by the Comet 1.

If it was designed today, there's no way in hell it would ever get certified.

fixfox wrote:
Have you ever heard about the Fokker F28 Fellowship? The plowed the skies all over the world bringing passengers from small, sometimes under developed airports to larger hubs. When the became old and to thirsty most operators replaced them with F70/F100's or other regional jets.


Yes. Great aircraft. Was anyone suggesting they should be consigned to the "forgettable" pile?
 
n729pa
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Fri Aug 12, 2016 12:29 pm

Gasman....

The extortionate cost of travelling on the thing gave you an experience that would barely pass for Y+ today?

Really?
You are being selective with your memory I think. Lets us not forget what flying experiences were like in the 1970s and 1980s, before you have IFE screens, fancy lounges for people who are aligned to frequent flyer programmes etc., and when long haul flights were a totally different experience and a world away from what there is today (regardless of the class of travel). In those days travelling on Concorde was the Elite of the Elite.
Do people not pay extortionate fares today to fly on certain flights, just to fly on a certain aircraft? Or is it because that flight offers something you can't get anywhere else?
 
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VirginFlyer
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Fri Aug 12, 2016 8:02 pm

Gasman wrote:
It also few extremely few passenger hours over the course of its existence yet had a major hull loss will 100% fatalities. Statistically that puts it at one of the most dangerous civilian aircraft in history, probably only surpassed by the Comet 1.

With such a small sample size, this statistic is fairly useless. By your same analysis, on the 24th of July 2000, Concorde was one of the least dangerous civilian aircraft in history, with no hull losses, - a feat for jet transports at that time matched I believe by only the Airbus A340, Boeing 777, Dornier 328JET, Ilyushun Il-86, Ilyushin Il-96, and Tupolev Tu-204. Yet 24 hours later it is the most dangerous. Perhaps if lots of aircraft types were having lots of accidents, then meaningful statistics could be generated.

Gasman wrote:
If it was designed today, there's no way in hell it would ever get certified.

Which specific certification requirements would it not meet? If you could quote the applicable FARs or JARs that would be appreciated.

V/F
 
Gasman
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Fri Aug 12, 2016 9:20 pm

n729pa wrote:
Gasman....

The extortionate cost of travelling on the thing gave you an experience that would barely pass for Y+ today?

Really?
You are being selective with your memory I think. Lets us not forget what flying experiences were like in the 1970s and 1980s, before you have IFE screens, fancy lounges for people who are aligned to frequent flyer programmes etc., and when long haul flights were a totally different experience and a world away from what there is today (regardless of the class of travel). In those days travelling on Concorde was the Elite of the Elite.
Do people not pay extortionate fares today to fly on certain flights, just to fly on a certain aircraft? Or is it because that flight offers something you can't get anywhere else?

You're confusing relative standards and the passage of time. The Concorde gave you a 2 * 2 seating product, non lie flat relatively narrow seats and I have no idea of the pitch. Windows were tiny, and the cabin was extremely noisy. In the 1970's, Y+ didn't exist but it was certainly possible to get a similar or better travel experience in Y. F Class in the 1970's on a DC-10 or 747 gave you an extremely well padded, wide seat with almost full recline in a big, airy cabin.

Admittedly the food and service on Concorde was something approaching F Class, but my point is you didn't travel on it because of the passenger comfort experience. You did so because there was no small amount of kudos in doing so, and perhaps because it was quick.



VirginFlyer wrote:
With such a small sample size, this statistic is fairly useless. By your same analysis, on the 24th of July 2000, Concorde was one of the least dangerous civilian aircraft in history, with no hull losses, - a feat for jet transports at that time matched I believe by only the Airbus A340, Boeing 777, Dornier 328JET, Ilyushun Il-86, Ilyushin Il-96, and Tupolev Tu-204. Yet 24 hours later it is the most dangerous. Perhaps if lots of aircraft types were having lots of accidents, then meaningful statistics could be generated.


Wrong. Hull loss and fatalities are not the only measure of safety. The Concorde had suffered several skin puncture/wheel explosion incidents prior to the one ending in hull loss. So prior to the hull loss incident in 2000 it was already far from being one of the safest commercial aircraft. You can't get around that on a statistical technicality.

VirginFlyer wrote:
Which specific certification requirements would it not meet? If you could quote the applicable FARs or JARs that would be appreciated


I presume you're aware that FARs have evolved over time. Without going over the engineering and performance specs of the Concorde in fine detail, from what I know of its history and flight characteristics, I'd start with 25.303, 25.305, 25.307, 25.27, 25.483 and probably many others.

Concorde captured hearts & minds. Striking & aggressive lines, jetsetting off to exotic destinations at supersonic speeds in supreme comfort enjoying the finest bounty the world has to offer en- route with a price tag that could only be accepted by those for whom money truly is no object. I get that. My point is that this image was in fact largely a myth. Because of its relatively short range routes it didn't save that much time really, it was uncomfortable, noisy, uneconomical, and most definitely unsafe - at least by any measure of safety that we have come to expect in commercial aviation.
 
VSMUT
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Fri Aug 12, 2016 9:32 pm

You seem to be viewing these aircraft in the eyes of the airline market of 2016. Things were different once, and I can assure you that these aircraft weren't built without a good reason.

Gasman wrote:
The Bae-146


The BAe-146 was the first real modern regional jet as we know them today. The reason for four tiny engines was because they didn't have any better options, and because they offered a low fuel consumption combined with low noise emissions for the time, allowing it to serve city center airports. Thats what they were thinking. And it was pretty popular too, considering that all aircraft of the era sold in rather small numbers.


VC-10


Built to connect hot, high, short and rough airfields across the British empire with non-stop flights to Britain, all while offering the speed, range and comfort of the 707 and DC-8. Doesn't really sound like a flop to me. What let it down was the fact that the country and airline behind it changed their minds about the need for it.

L-1011
And even for a 1970's trijet, its range was pathetic.


It wasn't designed to fly very far. It was designed for the requirements of a number of airlines that wanted a plane with the capacity of a 747, but for shorter routes.


Basically, you'd be stupid to have bought this aircraft instead of a DC-10-30.


Considering the safety record of the DC-10, I am not sure I agree ;)


777-200 (non ER version)
Basically a DC-10 with two engines..


...with lower fuel costs, modern design and great commonality with the ER version that most target airlines were expected to also buy. The alternative was to risk ceding the market to the A330/A340 combo.
 
Gasman
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Sat Aug 13, 2016 5:20 am

VSMUT - I pretty much agree with all your facts, but not your conclusions. The fact that an aircraft met some (in not all!) of its envisaged mission targets is not sufficient, in my book, to remove it from "forgettable" status. Take the 146. Okay, it served small regional airports successfully. But it still had four engines, was extremely noisy on the inside, looked like a turd, was plagued with technical issues and had a relatively short career. In my view, to achieve "memorable" status, an aircraft should demonstrate longevity and versatility.

Whereas the 744 (to grab at some low hanging fruit) once flew me from Phuket to BKK, and has also from LAX-SYD. Try doing that on a BAE-146 and see how far you get. It's also had a reign of nearly thirty years, was good looking, efficient when it was released, utterly safe, comfortable, looked the business etc. etc,.

The VC-10 as being the aircraft for hot & high British Empire airports was relatively small print stuff. It was conceived primarily to compete the with modern jet aircraft coming out of the USA, and to maintain the British aircraft manufacturing industry as a credible force and as an alternative to the 707/DC-8 it failed dismally. A similar mentality was responsible for the creation of Concorde. Only 50 or so VC-10's were built - although I do concede those that were had a relatively long career.

I'd take issue with your comment "considering the safety record of the DC-10...........". Correct me if I'm wrong, but there were only the two events (one of which was fatal) involving decompression that could be attributed to a design fault of the aircraft. The other DC-10 incidents were due to factors other than failure of the airframe.
 
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XAM2175
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Sat Aug 13, 2016 9:35 am

The main glaring flaw in the safety record of the DC-10, in my mind anyway, is that soon after the AA96 incident an engineer at Convair, who built the DC-10 fuselage for Douglas, identified that the rear cargo door design was flawed. The NTSB later made the same finding.

Correspondingly a service bulletin was issued.

TC-JAV, the aircraft involved in the TK981 disaster, was ordered from MDD three months after the bulletin was issued, and delivered to TK three months after that. None of the upgrades mandated by the bulletin had been implemented on the aircraft, even though MDD's paperwork showed they had.

I also believe there were several other decisions made during the DC-10's design phase that were unwise, such as routing hydraulics and other control channels though single points in the airframe where they were vulnerable to total failure, as with AA191 and UA232.

Whereas the 744 (to grab at some low hanging fruit) once flew me from Phuket to BKK, and has also from LAX-SYD. Try doing that on a BAE-146 and see how far you get.


By that measure the DC-9 is a completely forgettable airplane because it can't do MEL-DFW in one hop. How is that even comparable?

With regards to Concorde, are you aware that BA actually managed to operate it profitably for quite some time? Sure, if you boiled the whole thing down you're left with a massive vanity project, but it was one that drove a huge number of scientific advances and captured the imagination of millions - and you're saying it deserves to be forgotten because it was W fitout with F service in a Y cabin and it was just a bit faster?

THE ENTIRE BLOODY PURPOSE OF THE THING WAS THAT IT WAS FAST.

I am constantly amazed to this day that people were actually able to make commercial supersonic travel not only something that could be done but something that be done reliably, day-in-day-out, for damn near thirty years.
 
VSMUT
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Sat Aug 13, 2016 10:24 am

Gasman wrote:
But it still had four engines, was extremely noisy on the inside, looked like a turd, was plagued with technical issues.


Yes, it had four engines. This was in a time when four (or three) engines was the norm, rather than the exception.
Extremely noisy? If compared to a CRJ or E-jet, then yes. If compared to a Fokker 28, Fokker 27, 737-200 or early ATR, then no, not at all.
Plagued with technical issues? Maybe in the beginning, but current operators love them.


had a relatively short career


The BAe-146 / Avro RJ had a short career? It entered production in 1983, and I still see plenty of them in Scandinavia. Swiss, Brussels Airlines and Malmö Aviation. Just a few years back even SAS operated the type for a short while. Half of all BAe-146s and Avro RJs ever made are still flying today. The 737 classics by comparison have almost completely disappeared from the skies here, and that was a design that entered production a year later, in 1984 ;)


Try doing that on a BAE-146 and see how far you get.


Try landing a 747-400 in London City, or use it profitably on regional routes ;)


efficient when it was released


As was the BAe-146 :)


utterly safe


Of all the accidents and incidents involving the BAe-146 and Avro RJs, only two can be attributed to the aircraft, and neither aircraft was particularly new. One of those involved a fatigued landing gear, the other was because of a combination of inoperative spoilers and weather. Considering that a regional jet experiences a lot more take-offs and landings, often from relative short runways, that's a pretty good record.


The VC-10 as being the aircraft for hot & high British Empire airports was relatively small print stuff.


No it wasn't, it was pretty decisive to the development of the aircraft. The manufacturer wanted to develop a jet capable of competing with the US jets, it was the launch customer and financer (the government) that forced the requirements for short field performance, as the 707s and DC-8s at the time just couldn't use the airfields across the empire.
 
Gasman
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Sun Aug 14, 2016 8:43 am

Okay. The BAe-146 can go in gasman's book of influential commercial aircraft - but it's going in the chapter at the end entitled "other", where it will occupy half a page alongside the VC-10 (which I must concede, cockpit windows aside, is a damn good looking piece of kit).

Concorde is staying out. Its fame is based on a myth. Yes, there may have been periods where BA were able to operate it profitably, but that is only because they were given the frames literally for free by the UK government - so it hardly counts.
 
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fallap
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Mon Aug 15, 2016 7:56 am

Time to dust off the pitchfork.
 
n729pa
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Mon Aug 15, 2016 12:40 pm

When the follow up book comes "Motor vehicles that History Should Probably Forget"
The Model T Ford can go in Chapter One, as lacked any cruise control, air-con, Bluetooth, electric windows, automatic gear box or a choice of colour. :D

Back to the topic in hand first, I was thinking of something like the Dassault Mercure
 
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TheFlyingDisk
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Wed Aug 17, 2016 5:41 am

I'm surprised nobody here dare to mention the Airbus A380!

* It's only 20% larger than the next largest widebody aircraft (the 747 was 2x as large when it was first introduced)
* It didn't really revolutionize the aviation industry as a whole the way other aircraft did - it didn't push range the way the 77W did, nor did it lower the cost of travel for the passengers the way the 747 did.
* It's development was fraught with problems & its take up rate doesn't really make up for all the pains during the development process (unlike the 787).

I'm not saying that the A380 is a lousy aircraft, far from it. I'm just saying it's the wrong plane at the wrong time.
 
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Wed Aug 17, 2016 6:40 am

TWA772LR wrote:
CRJ-100/200. 'Nuff said.

I've never understood why the CRJ gets so much hate. It has brought jet travel to many small airports across the world that would not otherwise have it. I've flown a decent number of segments on CRJs, and other than the poorly placed windows, they're not at all bad for the 30 min - 2 hour segments they fly. Also, considering what existed before the CRJ's arrival, a CRJ seems downright luxurious when compared to stepping over the bar passing through the aisle of a J31/41 to get to your seat.
 
n729pa
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Wed Aug 17, 2016 12:35 pm

TheFlyingDisk wrote:
I'm surprised nobody here dare to mention the Airbus A380!

* It's only 20% larger than the next largest widebody aircraft (the 747 was 2x as large when it was first introduced)
* It didn't really revolutionize the aviation industry as a whole the way other aircraft did - it didn't push range the way the 77W did, nor did it lower the cost of travel for the passengers the way the 747 did.
* It's development was fraught with problems & its take up rate doesn't really make up for all the pains during the development process (unlike the 787).

I'm not saying that the A380 is a lousy aircraft, far from it. I'm just saying it's the wrong plane at the wrong time.



Without dragging this into yet another debate about the A380, I think there are some parallels with the 747 in the early-mid 70s, a drop off of orders/numbers being built and airlines offloading them. I fancy when economic times pick up again, we will see some more orders pick up, like the 747 did in the late 70s when new carriers came on and legacy carriers re-ordered. It's difficult to compare the A380 with the 787 as that was always going to sell more units, the 787 arguably was not without it's production and operation problems initially too and a lot of bad publicity. The leap from A330/A340 to the A380 was probably greater than that from the 777 to the 787, but in any case both the A380/787 are worthy planes I think.

It's a fine line sometimes between predicting what the markets need/want against the development/construction/testing time some years later when political/economic climates may be very different. There's clearly a market or niche for the A380s as most of the operators appear to be making a good use of them. MH certainly aren't but that's not a reflection of the A380, more to do MH themselves.



The Breguet 761/763/765s were very odd aircraft, they had a reasonable service life and like most things appear to have been designed for a purpose but they didn't catch on.
 
bohica
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Wed Aug 17, 2016 4:40 pm

Fairchild Dornier 328JET

Take a turboprop and do nothing but replace the turboprop engines with jet engines. What do you get? A turboprop with jet engines. Not only that, the engines selected for the 328JET weren't designed for airline use. The plane entered the market way too late after the CRJ and ERJ had already established themselves in the regional jet industry. It only had 32 seats, wasn't much faster than a turboprop, and the airplane was job security for mechanics. It was a day late and a dollar short.
 
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ro1960
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Wed Aug 17, 2016 7:45 pm

767333ER wrote:
The A318 will be remembered for how goofy it looks, but that's about it


The 318 will be remembered for being the only aircraft capable of flying LCY-JFK non stop. Let's look at the glass half full.
 
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ro1960
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Wed Aug 17, 2016 8:33 pm

Just to put things in perspective, I compiled some facts about the aircraft on OP's list.

Type
Built/Lost/In Service/Years

BAe-146
387/13/199/33+

Concorde
20/1/0/27

VC-10
54/7?/0/49?

L-1011
250/11/8/44+

777-200
88/0/79?/21+

Like it's been said by others, they all brought something to the aviation industry, not necessarily crowned with commercial success and longevity.
 
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ER757
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Wed Aug 17, 2016 10:43 pm

Another one I should have mentioned is the MD-11. I see this as the "Sean Lennon" of commercial airliners - notable only for its heritage without which it would be utterly irrelevant.
Where's the ROFL smiley when you need it? A great line and gives me an idea for a thread I'll start in non-av
 
Viscount724
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Thu Aug 18, 2016 2:15 am

ro1960 wrote:
767333ER wrote:
The A318 will be remembered for how goofy it looks, but that's about it


The 318 will be remembered for being the only aircraft capable of flying LCY-JFK non stop. Let's look at the glass half full.


You mean JFK-LCY nonstop. The A318 makes a fuel stop at SNN on LCY-JFK as the LCY runway is too short for nonstop operation on that route.

The C Series will reportedly be able to operate LCY-JFK nonstop in both directions with an all-business class configuration.
 
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ro1960
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Thu Aug 18, 2016 6:40 am

Viscount724 wrote:
ro1960 wrote:
767333ER wrote:
The A318 will be remembered for how goofy it looks, but that's about it


The 318 will be remembered for being the only aircraft capable of flying LCY-JFK non stop. Let's look at the glass half full.


You mean JFK-LCY nonstop. The A318 makes a fuel stop at SNN on LCY-JFK as the LCY runway is too short for nonstop operation on that route.

The C Series will reportedly be able to operate LCY-JFK nonstop in both directions with an all-business class configuration.


Thanks for the correction. I was under the impression that it was possible in both directions.
 
VSMUT
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Thu Aug 18, 2016 11:52 am

Adipasquale wrote:
I've never understood why the CRJ gets so much hate. It has brought jet travel to many small airports across the world that would not otherwise have it.


It also brought miserable small cramped aircraft to a fair amount of airports/routes that had previously been served by much larger aircraft ;)


Adipasquale wrote:
I've flown a decent number of segments on CRJs, and other than the poorly placed windows, they're not at all bad for the 30 min - 2 hour segments they fly.


Business travellers hate them, as otherwise normal hand luggage doesn't fit into the overhead lockers. That goes for all CRJs though.
 
YYZSpotter1991
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Thu Aug 18, 2016 9:17 pm

I definitely would want to fly on a VC-10 if I could find one. As for the topic at hand, I readily agree with the Boeing 739 (non-ER) being outrighted from the history books as it's not a particularly good aircraft (I flew on 2 with KLM back in 2013; from AMS-TLV and back) and it doesn't have much to offer compared to the other NG models.
 
NASBWI
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Mon Aug 22, 2016 8:32 pm

My 2 cents would be bet upon the BAe ATP. It was based on the relatively successful HS 748, and was a pioneer in terms of modernizing turboprops (IIRC, wasn't it the first commercial turboprop to have a glass cockpit?). Beyond that, however, it seemed plagued with maintenance problems, its performance was rather lackluster, and its very capabilities were outshone by ATR-72s (reliability/performance/capacity), and a few short years later, regional jets (essentially what killed the S2000).

The budgie was a beloved aircraft, and filled an important niche for its time. However, its larger, modern offspring just didn't translate to the changing climate, and as such, seems more forgettable than most other regional aircraft flying today.

The only other "forgettable" plane, also from the UK, and for many of the same reasons, would be the J41. It found some success with US carriers (ACA comes to mind), and a handful around the globe. But to me, it didn't seem to break any barriers, nor add anything that hadn't already been established. For the 30-40 seat arena, Saab already had an efficient (and more spacious) aircraft, Embraer took the prize for efficiency and speed, and DHC won for versatility and relative comfort. The J41 seemed little more than a stretched - and slightly more attractive - J31.

Of course, these are my opinions, and no offence intended towards our British neighbors: both the ATP and J41 were promising designs; they just didn't seem to pan out.
 
varig_dc10
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Mon Aug 22, 2016 10:49 pm

I wouldn't forget any one of them.

The VFW-Fokker 614 only had about 13 aircraft in airline operation with Cimber Air, Air Alsace and Touraine Air Transport.
It looked a little bit silly, even ugly, with it's over wing mounted engines.

But I remember reading about aircraft like this in my teens and without aircraft like this, my interest in passenger planes would be a bit less interesting.
 
TexanEngineer
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Tue Aug 23, 2016 12:29 am

Gasman wrote:

VirginFlyer wrote:
With such a small sample size, this statistic is fairly useless. By your same analysis, on the 24th of July 2000, Concorde was one of the least dangerous civilian aircraft in history, with no hull losses, - a feat for jet transports at that time matched I believe by only the Airbus A340, Boeing 777, Dornier 328JET, Ilyushun Il-86, Ilyushin Il-96, and Tupolev Tu-204. Yet 24 hours later it is the most dangerous. Perhaps if lots of aircraft types were having lots of accidents, then meaningful statistics could be generated.


Wrong. Hull loss and fatalities are not the only measure of safety. The Concorde had suffered several skin puncture/wheel explosion incidents prior to the one ending in hull loss. So prior to the hull loss incident in 2000 it was already far from being one of the safest commercial aircraft. You can't get around that on a statistical technicality.


Sorry to dig up an older comment, but I couldn't help but note...

You ARE incorrect to say that the hull lose incident makes it statistically unsafe (or even that the previous minor incidents make it unsafe). In statistics, one of the most basic rules you are taught is that any data is meaningless if the sample size is too small. Without getting technical (because I took stats way too long ago), I think it is fair to conclude that Concorde's total fleet hours are not signficantly high and therefore plausibly not sufficient to get a true read on it's statistics.

I believe the FAA uses a number on the order of 1E7 or 1E8 (for safety statistics); if we go by that, I highly doubt Concorde ever logged anywhere near that many hours in its fleet lifetime. For perspective, the 737NG (just the NG) fleet logs multiples of 1E7 hours per year.
 
Gasman
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Tue Aug 23, 2016 3:11 am

TexanEngineer wrote:
Gasman wrote:

You ARE incorrect to say that the hull lose incident makes it statistically unsafe (or even that the previous minor incidents make it unsafe). In statistics, one of the most basic rules you are taught is that any data is meaningless if the sample size is too small. Without getting technical (because I took stats way too long ago), I think it is fair to conclude that Concorde's total fleet hours are not signficantly high and therefore plausibly not sufficient to get a true read on it's statistics.

I believe the FAA uses a number on the order of 1E7 or 1E8 (for safety statistics); if we go by that, I highly doubt Concorde ever logged anywhere near that many hours in its fleet lifetime. For perspective, the 737NG (just the NG) fleet logs multiples of 1E7 hours per year.


Allow me. I took statistics at postgraduate level 15 years ago, and use the discipline on a daily basis.

While your statement "In statistics, one of the most basic rules you are taught is that any data is meaningless if the sample size is too small" is correct as far as it goes; it doesn't go far enough. Rest assured that the Concorde has most definitely accrued enough flight hours for valid statistical comparisons to be made in identifying a real difference in incident and accident rate; and extrapolating from that - safety. The formulas are simple, take into account the sample size and you would be looking for statistical validity with a P<0.01, the engineering standard (Medicine uses 0.05).

You are correct that in Concorde's case looking at the one single fatal accident on its own isn't valid - it might have taken a trillion more flight hours for the next one to have occurred. But the fact that there were many "near misses" involving the tyres and the fuel tanks is key. I'm not going to bother plugging the numbers into the formulae, but this adds up to a number of incidents with a relatively small denominator. This incident rate would therefore be statistically significantly worse than just about any other modern commercial aircraft.
 
n729pa
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Tue Aug 23, 2016 11:52 am

[quote="Gasman"][quote="TexanEngineer"][quote="Gasman"]

But the fact that there were many "near misses" involving the tyres and the fuel tanks is key.



Just curious, how do factor in near misses into it?

Do we take it then, that a 747 with engine pylon fatigue cracks are near misses when we compare them to LY1862 or CI358?
 
Gasman
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Tue Aug 23, 2016 11:59 pm

n729pa wrote:
Just curious, how do factor in near misses into it?

Do we take it then, that a 747 with engine pylon fatigue cracks are near misses when we compare them to LY1862 or CI358?


You would certainly audit the occurrence of something pylon fatigue cracks, but giving them equivalence in a statistical safety analysis as burst tyres puncturing fuel tanks would certainly not be valid. Pylon cracks, while not ideal, are not freak catastrophic events in themselves and would be identified with a competent maintenance program. Different kettle of fish to what was happening with Concorde.

I don't want to make this all about Concorde - there were more "forgettable" aircraft out there. But one more time:

- It wasn't safe enough (I stand by this)
- Uneconomical
- Airlines didn't buy it
- Noisy
- Cramped
- Yes it flew at Mach 2.0, but only over water and not on routes long enough for it really to make a significant difference
- It really only flew at all because it was artificially propped up bu the British government.

Yes, we'll remember it always - the image was that effective. But the reality of what was Concorde doesn't deserve it.
 
NASBWI
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Wed Aug 24, 2016 6:43 am

Gasman, I see what you're trying to say re: the Concorde. However, the list of problems with it (or any aircraft, for that matter) don't qualify it for the "forgettable" list; rather, it's more memorable as both a technological marvel - and a cautionary tale.

- I can agree that its safety features were lacking when compared to other airliners of the day.
- Yes, it was uneconomical, but when it was developed, fuel was phenomenally cheap, and it attracted quite a bit of attention from various airlines
- Airlines didn't buy it because by the time it entered the market, the fuel crisis changed a lot of airline exec's minds. That was only the tip of the iceberg, considering the environmental impact of the noise, which in turn, limited where it could fly.
- Noisy and cramped, yes. But it was the *only* commercial vehicle in the world to achieve cruising speeds of mach 2.0. That, in and of itself, is memorable.
- Lessons learned by the Concorde helped shape the industry into what it is today, IMO. Aircraft manufacturers realized, with the help of the airlines to whom they catered, that the requirement was for various sizes of subsonic aircraft to meet various needs, and not speed.

True, it was an economical nightmare for BA, AF, BAe and SUD/Aerospatiale, and really only an extremely expensive bragging right. However, it was a testament to our achievements as people, and that alone would make it memorable, rather than forgettable (for better or worse).

My idea of something forgettable would be something that added absolutely nothing (not even media attention) to the industry. Concorde, for all of her faults, was exactly the opposite. And with that, I think the Concorde forgettable/memorable horse is d.e.a.d. ;)
 
Gasman
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Wed Aug 24, 2016 7:13 am

Thanks NASBWI, you've put it far more succinctly than I did. The Concorde doesn't belong on this list - in spite of the fact, to this day, there is one hell of a lot of myth surrounding it.

Now back to the MD-11......
 
VSMUT
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Wed Aug 24, 2016 9:05 am

Gasman wrote:
- Cramped


Oh the irony! Airlines are looking at using narrowbodies on long haul routes more than ever, with 757s, 737MAXs and A321NEO(LR)s. Never mind the fact that some CRJs actually fly routes that take almost as long time (if not longer) as the Concorde was at crossing the Atlantic!

As for forgettable aircraft, you could probably put the Il-114, SAAB Scandia and Vickers Viking on that list.
 
Turnhouse1
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Wed Aug 24, 2016 7:54 pm

Concorde was not particularly a commercial success (though I doubt BA were making an operating loss on it though the last 20 years of its operation) and it's safety record hangs on the statistical significance of 1 incident due to the low number produced and hours they flew. However, it should never be forgotten.

I'd suggest the 737-800 and A320 are much more forgettable. Commercially hugely successful and I've flown on both of them a lot, but they have in the hands of Easyjet and Ryanair (and other airlines worldwide) made air travel entirely routine and in most cases forgettable. Forgettable is good when you get to your destination safely.
 
n729pa
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Thu Aug 25, 2016 7:01 am

The Airlander 10 could be a late addition!

Early days yet of course, and there are seemingly useful applications for it, but will we see these large flying mattresses in years to come I wonder?
 
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PatrickZ80
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Sat Sep 24, 2016 12:11 pm

My suggestion would be the A340-200/300? Too small for four engines as the A330-200/300 (same size but with two engines) performed a whole lot better. What in the world would you want four engines for when you could do the same job with two engines?
 
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longhauler
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Re: Aircraft that History should Probably Forget

Sat Sep 24, 2016 1:02 pm

PatrickZ80 wrote:
My suggestion would be the A340-200/300? Too small for four engines as the A330-200/300 (same size but with two engines) performed a whole lot better. What in the world would you want four engines for when you could do the same job with two engines?

Because when the A340 was designed and built, ETOPS was limited to 138 minutes. While ETOPS 180 was a possibility, even when the A340 first flew it was not yet authorized.

That meant on a lot of operations, an unrestricted A340 was more efficient than a rerouted A330 operating under ETOPS138 rules.

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