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ElpinDAB
Topic Author
Posts: 464
Joined: Sun Apr 17, 2005 7:00 am

L1011-250 Payload Range

Thu Feb 13, 2020 7:15 am

Hello all...

I have a few questions about the L1011. I see the listed ranges of the various models on Wiki and a.net, but nowhere else. Does anybody have a link to more in-depth details on the performance? I have always been surprise that the original models had a range of only 2,600nm...that's hardly US transcon.

I also see that the listed range of the L1011-500 is 5345nm. DC-10-30 range is listed at 5200nm with a fuselage similar in capacity/volume as the DC-10. Then, there is the L1011-250. It's an upgraded L1011 for the -1's and -2's, the longer fuselage variants, but with the more powerful engines and lengthened wings of the -500, along with a higher MTOW. Wiki says that the performance matched the DC-10-30, which would place the L1011-250 at near L1011-500 payload/range.

But it seems that only Delta bought the mods, and only for 6 aircraft. Why only Delta? Why only 6 aircraft? What was the performance of this aircraft with the mods? I know the unfortunate fable of the L1011, but why didn't other carriers modify their L1011's to -250 spec? Were the -1's and -2's good enough for the mission? Or was it all too late?


Some enjoyable L1011 videos...

RB-211 smokey start-up...rumble starting at 1:30...what a glorious sound!!!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8DfTX-IAkdg

Nice TWA L1011 flight STL-PHX trip in '91
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EawJatx3caQ
 
Tristarsteve
Posts: 3673
Joined: Tue Nov 22, 2005 11:04 pm

Re: L1011-250 Payload Range

Fri Feb 14, 2020 6:56 pm

There was no -2. The original was the -1, then came the -100, with increased weights which also had RB211-22B but had a centre tank. Soon after came the -200 which was similar to a -100 with -524 engines.
I worked for Gulf Air, and we bought new -100 aircraft, and later new -200 aircraft. The -100 were converted to -200 around 1978 by exchanging the engines and some small mods to accomodate them (mostly sensors and the FMS) Then we acquired some second hand -1. On the GF network with flights up to about 6 hours, they all worked, but the -1 were limited, mostly the lack of a centre tank.
Then I worked for TWA, and we flew ARN to JFK, usually with -100, but someyimes with -1 aircraft. The -1 could do trans atlantic just!!.
I expect Delta had a special case for the -250. We didn't need it.
 
BravoOne
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Joined: Fri Apr 12, 2013 2:27 pm

Re: L1011-250 Payload Range

Sat Feb 15, 2020 2:04 am

My relocation was that DL used the -250 on the North Atlantic and maybe ATL HNL before they purchased additional -500 from Air Canada. Don't bet your pay check on this. Did fly the -250 between HNL and LAX on a few occasions. The -250 had a slightly different nav set up so you had to reassemble your thought process before proceeding.
 
Max Q
Posts: 8571
Joined: Wed May 09, 2001 12:40 pm

Re: L1011-250 Payload Range

Sat Feb 15, 2020 2:25 am

The -250, with the original long body and the frisbee fairing was the best looking of all the Tristar’s I think

I believe it had the same Max gross weight and engine thrust as the -500 series?
The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.


GGg
 
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DL_Mech
Posts: 2545
Joined: Fri Feb 18, 2000 7:48 am

Re: L1011-250 Payload Range

Sat Feb 15, 2020 3:12 am

The -250s were all -1 airplanes with the large center tanks and heavyweight gear of the -500 (there were no -500 wingtips installed). Engines were the -524B4s that were also used on the -500 and -200 airplane. From memory 510k was the max gross weight IIRC. Less range than the -500 and DC-10-30. ATL-HNL (ship 737)and ATL-LGW, FRA,SNN,DUB,MAN,CDG were all frequent -250 destinations.

ElpinDAB wrote:
I know the unfortunate fable of the L1011, but why didn't other carriers modify their L1011's to -250 spec?


Modifying an -1 airplane to -250 standard required many structural modifications and a couple months of downtime.
This plane is built to withstand anything... except a bad pilot.
 
DanielBednar
Posts: 16
Joined: Fri Jul 05, 2019 5:40 pm

Re: L1011-250 Payload Range

Wed Mar 04, 2020 3:08 am

If you’re looking for a really enjoyable L1011 video, check out the following link to my channel’s video. Taken in 1986 when my father was a flight engineer on the L1011.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=geWRUKCoyZ8&t=3s
 
ElpinDAB
Topic Author
Posts: 464
Joined: Sun Apr 17, 2005 7:00 am

Re: L1011-250 Payload Range

Thu Aug 13, 2020 9:51 am

DL_Mech wrote:
The -250s were all -1 airplanes with the large center tanks and heavyweight gear of the -500 (there were no -500 wingtips installed). Engines were the -524B4s that were also used on the -500 and -200 airplane. From memory 510k was the max gross weight IIRC. Less range than the -500 and DC-10-30. ATL-HNL (ship 737)and ATL-LGW, FRA,SNN,DUB,MAN,CDG were all frequent -250 destinations.

ElpinDAB wrote:
I know the unfortunate fable of the L1011, but why didn't other carriers modify their L1011's to -250 spec?


Modifying an -1 airplane to -250 standard required many structural modifications and a couple months of downtime.


I would imagine it's not cheap. Thank you. I also recently read that there were some routes that Delta wanted to be able expand into Asia, but they weren't able because of the L1011 being their most capable aircraft.
 
ElpinDAB
Topic Author
Posts: 464
Joined: Sun Apr 17, 2005 7:00 am

Re: L1011-250 Payload Range

Thu Aug 13, 2020 9:53 am

Max Q wrote:
The -250, with the original long body and the frisbee fairing was the best looking of all the Tristar’s I think

I believe it had the same Max gross weight and engine thrust as the -500 series?


The frisbee fairing was a nice touch. I can't comment for the rest of the aesthetics.

I believe the -250 did have the same MTOW as the -500. I wish I had more info.
 
SteelChair
Posts: 1452
Joined: Fri Aug 25, 2017 11:37 am

Re: L1011-250 Payload Range

Sun Aug 16, 2020 1:45 am

Range is a very nebulous subject, especially on these boards. People endlessly post data from airplane manufacturers sales campaigns, which is nearly useless in the real world.

The L1011-250 had enough range for the routes that Delta used it to fly. It almost never left payload behind on North Atlantic routes for which it was almost perfectly sized.

The 250 mod program was a very significant undertaking. The airplane was pulled into the hangar and then put on jacks. Then, 18 pieces of shoring were placed under the fuselage and the wings. Someone stood on the ramp outside the hangar and looked through a device similar to that which a surveyor would use. The wings had to be deflected to just the right angle.

Then, the real fun began. The 4 main transverse bulkheads in the center wing box were cut out and replaced with heavier gauge (thicker) aluminum. The farthest aft of those four bulkheads was the rear spar. Its quite something to see such a large aircraft with the read spars removed. This center wing box was originally dry, and it was converted into fuel tanks. They were designated 1A and 3A and they held 27,000 pounds of fuel each. Of course, all the plumbing for the fuel lines, and the "jet pumps" had to be installed. Meanwhile the stingers in the overhead were beefed up with straps attached to them with hi lock fasteners.

In the wings, many of the stringers also got straps, only on the top. Also, a large aluminum plate roughly 10 by 10 feet and at least 1/4 inch thick was attached to the wing over the landing gear. Uprated landing gear were installed.

The cabin, with the exception of the 5 rear lavs, was almost completely reconfigured. A massive galley was installed at the front of the first class cabin, right outside the cockpit. It had to be assembled on the airplanes because it was too big to fit through the door.

Finally, RB211-524B4I (I for improved) engines were installed. The MTOW was increased from 466,000 lbs to 510,000 lbs. The cabin was configured for 269 passengers in three classes. As i recall, there were no significant changes to the flight control system. The 250s never had the ACS that the 500s had. The 250 mods were performed in-house, at Bay 7 of the TOC (Now bay 8).

The 500s were a mixed bag. I think that most if not all had an MTOW of 516,000 lbs. Some also had two auxiliary fuel tanks in the aft of the forward bag bin. Delta used the airplanes from PDX to the Pacific and pencils had to be sharpened very closely to make that work. The aux tanks were marginally successful. As I recall, they had a capacity of 16,000 lbs, and the "cost to carry" that fuel all the way across the Pacific was so high that less than half that amount was available at the end of tbe flight, when it might be needed.

By the time all this was going on, the RB211-524 had become reliable in the extreme. One engine (mounted in the number 2 slot of Shiip 762 as I recall) ran over 30,000 hours prior to its being removed, a record in the industry at the time.

Those are the highlights of the 250 mod program as I recall.
 
LCDFlight
Posts: 696
Joined: Wed Jan 01, 2020 9:22 pm

Re: L1011-250 Payload Range

Sun Aug 16, 2020 5:47 pm

SteelChair wrote:
Range is a very nebulous subject, especially on these boards. People endlessly post data from airplane manufacturers sales campaigns, which is nearly useless in the real world.

The L1011-250 had enough range for the routes that Delta used it to fly. It almost never left payload behind on North Atlantic routes for which it was almost perfectly sized.


Lots of excellent content in your post, but this was a really good point. An airliner's useful range is the distance a scheduled carrier can run it 365 days per year, with 100% of seats filled+bags. And that is obviously route specific too, because routes have different constraints. There are proofs in history of what various airliners can do, and (circumstantially) also proof, over time, of the frayed edge of what they can do (for example, frequent weight restriction). That's the best info we have.
 
Transpac787
Posts: 1421
Joined: Mon Jul 30, 2007 12:47 pm

Re: L1011-250 Payload Range

Mon Aug 17, 2020 2:31 am

DL_Mech wrote:
ATL-HNL (ship 737)and ATL-LGW, FRA,SNN,DUB,MAN,CDG were all frequent -250 destinations.


In what way(s) did ship 737 differ from the others?? Retained the domestic 2-class cabin, versus the international 3-class??
 
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DL_Mech
Posts: 2545
Joined: Fri Feb 18, 2000 7:48 am

Re: L1011-250 Payload Range

Mon Aug 17, 2020 7:42 pm

Transpac787 wrote:
DL_Mech wrote:
ATL-HNL (ship 737)and ATL-LGW, FRA,SNN,DUB,MAN,CDG were all frequent -250 destinations.


In what way(s) did ship 737 differ from the others?? Retained the domestic 2-class cabin, versus the international 3-class??


Domestic interior (30/265 vs. 32/270) with -250 Galley/Lav setup, orange/brown laminate wallpaper on the walls (to match the -1 airplanes).

This forward galley:


With this wallcovering:


The -250 lacked seats 1CD,16ABC and 20HJ.

Image

From:https://frequentlyflying.boardingarea.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/DL-L1011-Domestic-501x1024.jpg
This plane is built to withstand anything... except a bad pilot.
 
Lukas757
Posts: 56
Joined: Sun May 08, 2016 11:59 pm

Re: L1011-250 Payload Range

Mon Aug 17, 2020 9:00 pm

Sorry for the OT, but can someone quickly explain what the „buffer“ rows between the smoking and non-smoking rows in the Seat Plan are?
 
SteelChair
Posts: 1452
Joined: Fri Aug 25, 2017 11:37 am

Re: L1011-250 Payload Range

Wed Aug 19, 2020 11:12 pm

DL_Mech wrote:
Transpac787 wrote:
DL_Mech wrote:
ATL-HNL (ship 737)and ATL-LGW, FRA,SNN,DUB,MAN,CDG were all frequent -250 destinations.


In what way(s) did ship 737 differ from the others?? Retained the domestic 2-class cabin, versus the international 3-class??


Domestic interior (30/265 vs. 32/270) with -250 Galley/Lav setup, orange/brown laminate wallpaper on the walls (to match the -1 airplanes).

This forward galley:


With this wallcovering:


The -250 lacked seats 1CD,16ABC and 20HJ.

Image

From:https://frequentlyflying.boardingarea.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/DL-L1011-Domestic-501x1024.jpg


The 250's, for most of their careers, had a very different configuration than what this picture shows. This picture has no business class, and Delta international service had 3 classes for most (if not all) of the career of the 250s. As I recall, they had 269 seats.

I don't remember 737 having a 295 seat configuration, but my memory may be bad. The real oddball was 724. It was a -150 as I recall, and had only a very small center tank. I believe it was acquired from TWA, and it was reconfigured in spring and fall every year as it transitioned to international service in the summer. When it broke, there was nothing around to cover it (exactly) because it was a one off. Everyone in DFW hated that airplane as I recall.
 
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DL_Mech
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Re: L1011-250 Payload Range

Thu Aug 20, 2020 3:35 am

SteelChair wrote:

The 250's, for most of their careers, had a very different configuration than what this picture shows. This picture has no business class, and Delta international service had 3 classes for most (if not all) of the career of the 250s. As I recall, they had 269 seats.


Yeah, it’s a shame more pictures don’t exist of the international cabin on L-1011s.

Here is one I have found:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/5221712429/in/photostream/
This plane is built to withstand anything... except a bad pilot.
 
slcguy
Posts: 421
Joined: Wed Jul 09, 2008 12:09 pm

Re: L1011-250 Payload Range

Thu Sep 03, 2020 1:17 pm

The -250 modification was the ultimate variant of the full size L-1011 (non -500). Was this modification developed by Lockheed or outside aircraft modification company for Delta Air Lines or a combination? Either way only 8 were produced, with the last six -1s ordered by Delta being modified as -250s. No clue where the other two -250 went.

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