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thebunkerparodi
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if the tupolev 144 was exported, would it be sold only to the warsaw pact airlines or not?

Tue May 17, 2022 5:42 pm

Hello, by curiosity, if the Tu 144 was more successful and the ussr decided to export it, would they allow it to be sold to the western airlines or only to the warsaw pact one?
Thanks for your anserws and sorry for my absence, I know it's been a while.
 
tu144d
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Re: if the tupolev 144 was exported, would it be sold only to the warsaw pact airlines or not?

Tue May 17, 2022 5:50 pm

The 1973 Paris airshow crash of SSSR-77102 basically off killed any export potential even among COMECON nations. Now, assuming most of the teething problems had been overcome especially with the advent of the D model with much more economical RD-36 engines I doubt there would've been much enthusiasm to operate even within the Warsaw pact given skyrocketing oil prices and prohibitive overland SST rights which even they couldnt have ignored. Remember Poland manufactured quite a bit of the Il-86 parts at PZL Mielec which despite its flaws was quite a more economically sound project and I can't remember the number but LOT was allocated a few Il-86s as barter and they still refused to take it eventually acquiring the 767s. However, the only other Communist country I could see operating the Tu-144 as a prestige project would have been Cubana operating perhaps a codeshare route with Aeroflot half painted in a Cubana livery. A possible HAV-YQX-SVO route would've been possible with limited seating and extra tanks similar to how after being refused landing rights in various countries, Aeroflot retrofitted the Tu-114 with much reduced seating and extra tanks to do Moscow-Havana nonstop. I believe the westward flight stopped and tanked up at Murmansk though.
 
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PatrickZ80
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Re: if the tupolev 144 was exported, would it be sold only to the warsaw pact airlines or not?

Tue May 17, 2022 7:58 pm

Maybe China would have taken a bunch of them but that can't be said for certain. Aviation in China didn't mean that much in those days and where would they fly it anyway?

They certainly wouldn't sell it to any western airline. Not that western airlines were interested, they thought of Russian aircraft as of inferior quality and for political reasons they also didn't want to buy anything Russian.
 
PSAatSAN4Ever
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Re: if the tupolev 144 was exported, would it be sold only to the warsaw pact airlines or not?

Fri May 20, 2022 8:54 pm

Quality of build and design issues aside, what kills many transportation builders' hopes of exporting is the availability of spare parts. How are you going to take care of all those stranded passengers if your plane goes tech on you?

The Tu-144 was a vanity project that was rushed through production, so as to keep the Soviet Union "competitive" with the west, and it showed: the cabin could get ferociously hot, the engines were deafeningly loud, and although a stunning plane, it would have been an operational nightmare for anyone other than Aeroflot or Warsaw Pact country.

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