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radio2015
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Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Mon May 04, 2015 5:12 pm

Checking the A-net search engine, I know this was covered in previous years within other posts. So sorry for bringing it up again. Just wondered if it still goes on today and what Airlines still do it? Someone told me it's all outlawed now because of noise reasons, seems strange with all the noise already generated from take offs and taxiing etc. I'd love to experience one of these pushbacks!
 
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MD80
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Mon May 04, 2015 5:23 pm

Nice that you are asking and I also hope for answers!  
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migair54
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Mon May 04, 2015 5:34 pm

are you asking about the power-back procedure with the engines??

If it´s that, the main problem is the engine ingesting exhaust, debris, dust etc.... it can flame out the engine or get very high temperatures, and also not only noise but also the blast going towards the front where equipment and terminal buildings are.

Some airports don´t allow at all, not even for turboprop planes, it is more common than on jets.
 
steex
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Mon May 04, 2015 5:35 pm

I believe you're referring to powerbacks using the thrust reversers, most people would consider a pushback to be the standard operating procedure of utilizing a tug to push the plane off the gate. I'm not aware of anywhere that this practice is still in regular use for the DC-9 family. It was typically only used on aircraft with fuselage-mounted engines since the risk of ingesting debris during the powerback would be much higher with wing-mounted engines.

However, I believe the reason for cutting this practice was primarily reduction in fuel usage when oil prices spiked as opposed to noise reduction specifically. Even if brief, it's not particularly efficient to spool the engines up just to get the plane off the gate.

[Edited 2015-05-04 10:36:37]
 
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litz
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Mon May 04, 2015 6:33 pm

I have heard (but not been able to find) that there is ... spectacular ... video of a powerback at a flooded airport (maybe New Orleans or Houston?), with some pretty impressive flying water ...
 
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intsim
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Mon May 04, 2015 6:53 pm

Slightly off-topic. I seem to recall being on a DAL 727 at LAX in the early 1990s that did a powerback. Am I imagining this?

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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Mon May 04, 2015 10:37 pm

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KdWEArjevZM

FL 717 doing power back at TPA!
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northwestEWR
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Tue May 05, 2015 12:43 am

Powerbacks are definitely fun but are now expressly forbidden in the Flight Manuals (at least at Delta).

They're expensive in terms of fuel burned and the wear and tear on the engines.... for zero gain. It's not faster. It's a lot more dangerous, etc.

Last Powerback I experienced was on a Northwest DC-9-41 at Detroit in 2005. Those were definitely a blast!

[Edited 2015-05-04 17:44:14]
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BoeingGuy
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Tue May 05, 2015 10:36 pm

AA just removed powerbacks as an approved procedure. DL never allowed it.

NW was the last airline to stop regular powerbacks with DC-9s around 2006. FL and AA stopped it in about 2005. Those were the only three who have done it in recent times with their DC-9/MD-80/717 airplanes.

AS, DL and some others never did it.
 
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Tue May 05, 2015 11:28 pm

northwest EWR is correct I used to be run/taxi qualified on the DC-9 and used to do them in MEM they were fun for sure. NW was the last airline doing them. Funny we never allowed anything larger than a 727 on a powerback but in EWR Eastern used to do them with a 757 they were able to go straight back from the gate they were at. Never seen anyone other than EAL do it at EWR. Our gates were to crowded to do any powerbacks there.
 
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northwestEWR
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Tue May 05, 2015 11:38 pm

Quoting stratosphere (Reply 9):
EWR Eastern used to do them with a 757 they were able to go straight back from the gate they were at. Never seen anyone other than EAL do it at EWR. Our gates were to crowded to do any powerbacks there.

I've always heard the EA 757 rumor but thought it was tried several times and then banned because of FOD intake.
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TPAJAY
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Tue May 05, 2015 11:54 pm

Experienced it several times at MSP with NW, and was initially told that it was because of the snow cover or ice cover that would not allow the tug to get the traction to do the pushback. Which made sense since it was always in the winter months that I have experienced it.

But then again I can't explain the need for it in the TPA video.
 
RetiredWeasel
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Wed May 06, 2015 4:08 am

Quoting TPAJAY (Reply 11):
and was initially told that it was because of the snow cover or ice cover that would not allow the tug to get the traction to do the pushback

It was a standard procedure in NW 727s. We even did it in Guam where snow/ice was obviously not a factor. It did save time when tugs were scarce.
 
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Wed May 06, 2015 4:56 pm

Quoting northwestEWR (Reply 10):
I've always heard the EA 757 rumor but thought it was tried several times and then banned because of FOD intake.

AA experimented with it too on the 757. They quickly decided it wasn't a good idea. Also, they couldn't reliably get the 757 rolling backwards if it was heavy. Britannia had it in there Flight Manuals for their 757s, although I don't know if they ever actually did it.

Powerbacks are prohibited by AFM Limitation on the 747, 767, 777 and 787. They are not specifically prohibited by regulation on the 737 or 757.
 
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DocLightning
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Wed May 06, 2015 8:16 pm

Last powerback I experienced was on a NW DC-9 at JFK in 2005 or 6. When doing a power back, the pilots must use THRUST to stop the backwards roll. If they use the brakes, the aircraft will sit up on its tail.

Powerbacks are risky. They put wear and tear on the engines, kick up FOD (which can hit people, damage ground eqipment, or be ingested), and because the aircraft is not moving forward they can lead to stalls and flame-outs if the engines are pushed too hard. Also, the cockpit has no rear-view mirror, so there's a risk they might bump something. AFAIK, no airline does them anymore.

From the inside, it feels not to different from a push. The only way you know one is happening is because you hear the engines spool up as the movement starts.
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Wed May 06, 2015 8:30 pm

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 14):
From the inside, it feels not to different from a push. The only way you know one is happening is because you hear the engines spool up as the movement starts.

It felt very different than a push for a passenger. The engines start at the gate; they foll forward first; then it's really loud while the engines are in reverse; it felt very different as the airplane slowly started to roll back.

I enjoyed it, but it was very much different in the cabin than a pushback with a tug is.
 
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northwestEWR
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Thu May 07, 2015 12:00 am

I don't know if there's much louder than the reversers on a DC-9. You could hear the powerbacks clear across the airport. ROAR!!!!!!!!!!
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Classa64
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Thu May 07, 2015 1:56 pm

I spent hours and hours on top of T1 at YYZ watching AC DC-9's backing up when I was little, was the best viewing area ever. i thought it was banned due to wasting fuel.
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Horstroad
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Fri May 08, 2015 4:29 pm

Quoting N126DL (Reply 6):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KdWEArjevZM
Quoting BoeingGuy (Reply 15):
The engines start at the gate; they foll forward first; then it's really loud while the engines are in reverse;

Why do the have to roll forward at first? It's not like they released the brakes and idle thrust pushed them forward until the reversers deployed, the marshaller signalled them forward at first.
 
jetmatt777
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Fri May 08, 2015 4:34 pm

Maybe they roll forward a few feet to get reverse momentum? Similar to if you are trying to pull something heavy backwards, sometimes it helps to push it forward, and then as it comes to a stop use the momentum that is reversing direction to give you a push as you begin to pull.
 
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Fri May 08, 2015 4:53 pm

Quoting horstroad (Reply 18):

Why do the have to roll forward at first? It's not like they released the brakes and idle thrust pushed them forward until the reversers deployed, the marshaller signalled them forward at first.

As stated already above, you're not allowed to use brakes during the reverse.

The engine spools up a bit before the reverse unstow fully, so the residual thrust is enough to move the aircraft.

Further, if the aircraft has stood a while, the tires get a bit of a flat spot. This initial movement will probably help to overcome it.
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Fri May 08, 2015 7:22 pm

Quoting jetmatt777 (Reply 19):
Maybe they roll forward a few feet to get reverse momentum? Similar to if you are trying to pull something heavy backwards, sometimes it helps to push it forward, and then as it comes to a stop use the momentum that is reversing direction to give you a push as you begin to pull.

I was told that rolling forward was for three reasons: 1) to get the momentum going, as you indicate; 2) make sure everything spools up and deploys symmetrically, and 3) get off the flat spots on the wheels before going into reverse.
 
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Fri May 08, 2015 8:23 pm

I remember flying Eastern through ATL many times in the 80s thru their collapse. Most of those flights were on DC-9s and were power backups. At the time it was my understanding that it was to save money by not needing a tug or its driver. It seemed that it would be very hard on the engines, but maybe it wasn't.
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RetiredWeasel
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Fri May 08, 2015 9:34 pm

Quoting BoeingGuy (Reply 21):
I was told that rolling forward was for three reasons

As one who sat through many of them as an FO on 727s (it was a captain only procedure), the roll forward a little first was to get off the flat spot the tires may have formed during a prolonged park. That's what training told us. Took less power to roll forward than to use reverse to overcome the flat spots.

As far a cost effectivenss (fuel usage etc.), you'd have to find a beancounter to answer that question. At many stations contract mx or service may have charged a hefty price for tug pushbacks, so I don't think it's 'black n white'. And not having to wait for a free tug saved a lot of time.
 
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Sat May 09, 2015 7:12 am

Quoting MD80 (Reply 1):
it can flame out the engine or get very high temperatures,

That's complete nonsense, i've done hundreds of powerbacks on the B727 and the MD8O.


You're not going to 'flame out the engine or overtemp it'


Biggest problem is FOD ingestion or sitting on the tail by hitting the brakes, I always thought it was a dubious procedure though and I don't see how not using a tug saved any money !
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Sat May 09, 2015 11:12 am

Quoting Max Q (Reply 24):
Quoting MD80 (Reply 1):
it can flame out the engine or get very high temperatures,

I never wrote this....


   
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Max Q
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Sun May 10, 2015 8:23 am

Quoting MD80 (Reply 25):
I never wrote this....

I know and I don't know why this misquote happened, I was quoting from 'reply 2'


It's happened to me before as well.


Anyway, best wishes
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Wed May 13, 2015 11:55 pm

Quoting intsim (Reply 5):
Slightly off-topic. I seem to recall being on a DAL 727 at LAX in the early 1990s that did a powerback. Am I imagining this?

I remember flying from DFW to SFO in June 1992 on a 727 (DL or UA, not sure) and it used powerback. I then didn't know this existed and I was quite taken by surprise.

I always wondered how the pilots know it is safe to do so? No rearview mirrors on planes.
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Thu May 14, 2015 12:17 am

Quoting ro1960 (Reply 27):
I always wondered how the pilots know it is safe to do so? No rearview mirrors on planes.

They had a marshaller giving them commands. In addition there are two wing walkers.

Watch this video for illustration:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KdWEArjevZM
 
MrBuzzcut
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Thu May 14, 2015 3:11 am

Quoting BoeingGuy (Reply 28):
Quoting ro1960 (Reply 27):
I always wondered how the pilots know it is safe to do so? No rearview mirrors on planes.

They had a marshaller giving them commands. In addition there are two wing walkers.

Watch this video for illustration:

I once watched a C-17 do a power back. They just dropped the ramp so it was parallel with the ground (configured for using a loader, not all the way down like you're driving things up the ramp) and had a guy standing on it communicating over the headset with the flight deck. That was an impressive sight to behold.
 
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Thu May 14, 2015 3:24 am

Quoting MrBuzzcut (Reply 29):
I once watched a C-17 do a power back. They just dropped the ramp so it was parallel with the ground (configured for using a loader, not all the way down like you're driving things up the ramp) and had a guy standing on it communicating over the headset with the flight deck. That was an impressive sight to behold.

It was a requirement that the C-17 be able to do powerbacks so it was designed to do so.
 
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Sun May 17, 2015 4:41 am

I've been on an EA 757 that did an engine pushback at ATL in 1990. Was an experience as the spoilers popped up as well.
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Max Q
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Sun May 17, 2015 7:22 am

Quoting jOHNcLIPPER (Reply 31):
I've been on an EA 757 that did an engine pushback at ATL in 1990. Was an experience as the spoilers popped up as well.

As hard as I find it to believe this happened if the autobrakes are armed for 'RTO' then deployment of the thrust reversers will cause the spoilers to deploy.
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johnclipper
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Mon May 18, 2015 12:17 pm

Sorry, not the spoilers, the ailerons .
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Mon May 18, 2015 7:39 pm

Quoting Max Q (Reply 32):
As hard as I find it to believe this happened if the autobrakes are armed for 'RTO' then deployment of the thrust reversers will cause the spoilers to deploy.

Actually, I don't believe that it's dependent on the Autobrake selector being in RTO. I thought the speedbrakes will deploy anytime you select reverse thrust on the ground. I'll have to check into that.

Maybe you are thinking of the 787 RTO feature instead. On the 787 only, if you get RTO autobrakes by pulling back the throttles above 85 knots on takeoff, the speedbrakes also deploy automatically. On all the other models, you have manually raise the speedbakes during RTO, or they will pop up when you pull the reverse thrust levers, although this is mean to be a backup, not an authorized procedure.
 
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Tue May 19, 2015 6:31 am

Quoting BoeingGuy (Reply 34):
Actually, I don't believe that it's dependent on the Autobrake selector being in RTO. I thought the speedbrakes will deploy anytime you select reverse thrust on the ground. I'll have to check into that.

On the 757 /67 with autobrakes set to RTO above 85 knots selecting idle thrust will result in maximum RTO autobraking


Selecting reverse will result in automatic spoiler deployment, you do NOT need to deploy them manually.


Don't know about the 787, above my pay grade.
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BoeingGuy
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Tue May 19, 2015 7:15 am

Quoting Max Q (Reply 35):
Quoting BoeingGuy (Reply 34):
Actually, I don't believe that it's dependent on the Autobrake selector being in RTO. I thought the speedbrakes will deploy anytime you select reverse thrust on the ground. I'll have to check into that.

On the 757 /67 with autobrakes set to RTO above 85 knots selecting idle thrust will result in maximum RTO autobraking

Yes, I am fully aware of that. I believe it's the same on every Boeing model. However, on the 787 pulling the throttles back to idle with autobrakes set to RTO will also deploy the speedbrakes automatically in addition to RTO autobrakes. It's the only Boeing model that does that, not even the 777.

Quoting Max Q (Reply 35):
Selecting reverse will result in automatic spoiler deployment, you do NOT need to deploy them manually.

Yes, but for RTO this is not an approved procedure. The interlock between the reverse thrust levers and speedbrake is a backup, but the correct procedure is to manually deploy the speedbrakes during an RTO.
 
Max Q
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Tue May 19, 2015 8:12 am

Quoting BoeingGuy (Reply 36):
Quoting Max Q (Reply 35):
Selecting reverse will result in automatic spoiler deployment, you do NOT need to deploy them manually.

Yes, but for RTO this is not an approved procedure. The interlock between the reverse thrust levers and speedbrake is a backup, but the correct procedure is to manually deploy the speedbrakes during an RTO.

It is OUR approved procedure for RTO and has been for years, if the spoilers do not deploy automatically with reverse thrust activation then we will do so manually, that is our 'back up'


As long as the interlock functions normally this provides a very useful time saving feature by eliminating a separate action.


Perhaps it is not approved at your airline but every carrier has different procedures.

[Edited 2015-05-19 01:13:43]
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longhauler
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Tue May 19, 2015 2:13 pm

Quoting Max Q (Reply 37):
It is OUR approved procedure for RTO and has been for years, if the spoilers do not deploy automatically with reverse thrust activation then we will do so manually, that is our 'back up'

Same thing where I fly! It's one of the F/O's RTO SOPs ... to check that the spoilers have deployed, and call "no spoilers" if they haven't.

But in practicality, on a reject, you'll never beat the spoilers on reverse activation. So I can't imagine SOPs where they have to be manually deployed, likely they will already be deployed by the time you get to the handle.

Quoting BoeingGuy (Reply 36):
It's the only Boeing model that does that, not even the 777.

And yet ... every Airbus does.  
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Tue May 19, 2015 9:27 pm

Quoting Max Q (Reply 37):
It is OUR approved procedure for RTO and has been for years, if the spoilers do not deploy automatically with reverse thrust activation then we will do so manually, that is our 'back up'


As long as the interlock functions normally this provides a very useful time saving feature by eliminating a separate action.


Perhaps it is not approved at your airline but every carrier has different procedures.

I don't work for an airline. I work for a manufacturer. A Technical Bulletin was issued a few years ago disapproving relying on the interlock during an RTO. The Engineering Analysis hasn't been proven to be reliable enough vs the potential consequences if the speedbrakes aren't up during a high speed RTO on all but one model (the 787 doesn't count because it works differently).

I guess some carriers disregard manufacturer guidance then.

Only on the 787 is that an authorized procedure because it doesn't use the interlock; the spoilers are activated by the RTO autobrakes.
 
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Tue May 19, 2015 9:29 pm

Quoting longhauler (Reply 38):
But in practicality, on a reject, you'll never beat the spoilers on reverse activation. So I can't imagine SOPs where they have to be manually deployed, likely they will already be deployed by the time you get to the handle.

Manufacturer procedure is to manually deploy the speedbrakes first; then grab the thrust reverse levers.
 
RetiredWeasel
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Tue May 19, 2015 10:54 pm

Quoting BoeingGuy (Reply 39):
I guess some carriers disregard manufacturer guidance then.

I would guess that most US airlines ignored that manufactures guidance-- if it is indeed the recommended one. My many years of flying 727-200s, 747-100s, 747-200s, 747-400s with a company that changed to double breasted uniform jackets always initiated full reverse on an RTO--then verified the spoilers auto deployed. If the spoilers didn't,...then grab the speedbrake lever.
 
TW870
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Tue May 19, 2015 11:13 pm

Northwest question here.

Did Northwest do powerbacks before the RC merger? I only ask because I spent a lot of time as a kid at MSP in the 1980-1986 era. I remember many RC DC-9 powerbacks off the green concourse, but I am not sure if I ever remember an NW 727 powerback. I mean I certainly remember them after the merger, but I wonder about before. I just ask because Nyrop was a real MX cost control guy, and I am not sure he would have liked the engine wear. He would certainly have gotten in a fight with Guy Cook over whether or not you could powerback or who would drive the tug - but I am just not recalling if he actually picked that fight.

On a related note, could you do powerbacks off the north side of the red concourse at MSP? The alley was pretty tight between the red and the blue concourse, and back in the day Braniff usually had airplanes on the lower-40s gates during the day. When North Central was over there - or later Northwest - could they do powerbacks in the tight space?
 
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Tue May 19, 2015 11:23 pm

Quoting RetiredWeasel (Reply 41):
I would guess that most US airlines ignored that manufactures guidance-- if it is indeed the recommended one.

Yes it is. I read the Flight Ops Tech Bulletins that were released a few years ago on this topic. It's also in the Non-Nromal Maneuvers section of the QRH.
 
FlyASAGuy2005
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Wed May 20, 2015 1:38 am

Quoting N126DL (Reply 6):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mVoKORNH6wc

And another of FL from as recent as 2014.
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Wed May 20, 2015 2:13 am

Quoting FlyASAGuy2005 (Reply 44):
Quoting N126DL (Reply 6):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mVoKORNH6wc

And another of FL from as recent as 2014.

I saw that. Is it an accurate date? I thought FL, DL/NW and AA eliminated powerback as an approved procedure several years ago. As a matter of practice, I believe FL stopped doing it regularly around 2005.
 
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vatveng
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Wed May 20, 2015 8:18 pm

Quoting BoeingGuy (Reply 45):
I saw that. Is it an accurate date? I thought FL, DL/NW and AA eliminated powerback as an approved procedure several years ago. As a matter of practice, I believe FL stopped doing it regularly around 2005.

On the left you'll see ground equipment painted in Southwest colors. I'd say the date is accurate.

The video description does say it was that captain's final AirTran flight, maybe it was a special request that was approved because the plane was going to the desert in a few days?
 
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rjsampson
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Thu May 21, 2015 4:01 pm

Quoting vatveng (Reply 46):
maybe it was a special request that was approved because the plane was going to the desert in a few days?

Those were my thoughts as well... At DL L10 captain friend of mine, after his final flight said he definitely did some "unapproved" (never unsafe) things. Well, heck, he let me in the the cockpit after shut down, where I got to play with control surfaces, flaps, etc. (Amazing how you could feel the whole plane move when adding elevator input).

Has anyone else heard of unorthodox operations on final flights?
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litz
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Thu May 21, 2015 7:56 pm

Quoting rjsampson (Reply 47):
(Amazing how you could feel the whole plane move when adding elevator input)

That's quite a sizable piece of hardware moving up and down on that L10 ...
 
BoeingGuy
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RE: Pushbacks On 717's DC-9's

Thu May 21, 2015 9:08 pm

Quoting rjsampson (Reply 47):
Has anyone else heard of unorthodox operations on final flights?

Like the guy who buzzed Waikiki Beach in a DC-10 maybe?

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