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keesje
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Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Thu May 16, 2019 7:54 pm

(Previous CRJ topics closed by Mod, advised to start new)

The CRJ has been a big success over the last 25 years. Shaping an industry. 1500 CRJ's are flying around globally, representing a significant after market.

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Photo Nino Buda

Over the last decade BBD put all it's eggs in the CSeries basket & Embraer took over as market leader 70-100 seats with the E175 & E190. Now everybody is looking what will happen. The CRJ is still a modern aircraft, more than 3000 people work on the CRJ production line. https://www.mro-network.com/airframe/fitting-crj-restructured-bombardier

The E175E2 seems to have become (way) too heavy to meet scope clause limitations and the MRJ is everything but established / low risk.

GE used to dominate the regional jet market, their CF34's powering both the CRJ's and E-jets. Pratt is now on the A220s, -E2s and MRJs. GE Aviation developed a "mini LEAP", the Passport engines. Those entirely new engines are now in service on the Global large business jets, but need scale, applications and ROI. There must be some incentive at GE Aviation, to not be get wiped out the coming 10-15 years in this segment.

Image

Bombardier seems to have adopted a strategy leaving civil aviation. It seems they (succesfully) sold off the Cseries. The Ireland Shorts plant will follow. Would there be any market party interested in taking over & NEO'ing the CRJ? Quebec & GE would be supportive I guess.. Thousands of jobs are on the line..

The CRJ700 & 900 received NG upgrades around 2012. They are cramped & luggage haters, but light and efficient and would meet 76 seat 39t scope clauses, even re-engined / stretched.

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JayinKitsap
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Thu May 16, 2019 8:25 pm

BBD is working to sell off the CRJ, only will have business jets after that. They have no money right now to barely survive, much less certify anything. So any upgrades will be by the buyer, if they are so inclined.

BBD's rail business is in serious problems - two years after deliveries to the NY subway were to be complete, 120 still to go out of the 300 with delivers shut off until BBD fixes the problems in the units already delivered. There are 4 other major contracts that are teetering at default. Canada's Via Rail did not order BBD recently because of their problems.
 
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Thu May 16, 2019 9:40 pm

Gee, who knew Photoshop was a engineering program replacing CATIA at 1% of the cost.
 
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keesje
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Thu May 16, 2019 10:41 pm

lightsaber wrote:
keesje wrote:
mxaxai wrote:
We do know that there is no new alternative for at least 5 - 8 years. More importantly, there seems to be no new engine that could leapfrog the PW1000 within the next decade (in this thrust range).
Realistically, the only options for a next-gen 76-seater are a derated MTOW MRJ or E2-175. Alternatively, airlines could abandon the market altogether but that leaves the 130-seaters - E2-195, CS100 - as the smallest jet in the fleet. Or wait for a decade and hope that cheap oil keeps the CRJ-700s competitive with the incoming NEO & MAX and CSeries fleets.

I'd say the MRJ has a chance.


Challenge for the MRJ is that the after market & support infrastructure doesn't exist. Few airlines would be ready to set that up completely them selves..

If the current operators, GE and Bombardier and a new owner would have a billion laying around.. https://www.airliners.net/forum/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1422729

Only a billion? Much lower than my estimate. The Passport isn't ready for high cycle duty. Oh, it can be made ready, I see no issue. But besides I creasing the bypass ratio, the subsystems are not ready for 20,000 FC (flight cycles) and 30,000+ hours before the first overhaul.

The nacelle isn't going to survive 80,000 FC either. It is a great design for the Global, an aircraft with a limit of validity of 17,000 cycles:

https://www.ainonline.com/aviation-news ... -certified

Seriously, if any Global sees 12,000 cycles, I would be shocked. CRJs are already passing 60,000 FC, hence the LOV expansion to 80,000 FC. A huge difference in design optimization...

The Passport claims 8% lower fuel burn than comparable engines (BMR-725).

Errr.... That sucks compared to a GTF. Now, it isn't built to compete. It is faster and cheaper. Just as RR did well taking the BMR 715 and putting in a durable BMR720, it still hasn't received the maintenance PIP (too few sold). Overhauls every 8,000 cycles vs. 20,000+ cycles between overhauls for commercial engines.

Oh, both the BMR720 or Passport could do 20,000, but neither has had that billion dollar PIP. Perhaps 2 billion. RR is trying for a lesser number at lower cost per contract with DL. I do not know the status.

Why yes Virginia, the Pearl could be adapted to commercial duty too. The core of both are excellent, they just need different high turbine blades for commercial duty, different turbine clearance control, sump back pressure regulator, low spool, compressor stator linkages, anti ice valves, fuel pumps (durability), a low turbine Clearance control valve (reduced fuel burn), LEAP variable turbine cooling (how the LEAP can compete with the PW1100G), and a totally different nacelles.

But yeah, otherwise ready.

Lightsaber


Of course you couldn't just plug the Passport on a CRJ.. But it has some margin, so could be optimized (lower EGT?) a bit for better time on wing. BPR is not super for the Passports, maybe speed was important as you say. Putting Pratt GTF's on the CRJ.. just don't know, they might have lower dry weights though. However Pratt is the "competitor" here, so little incentive to subsidize anything. The GE Compass has already been put on (the Globals), so might need less effort / negotiating / engineering.. And GE has something to regain.

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https://twitter.com/bombardierjets/status/661564085734125568
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Fri May 17, 2019 12:31 am

No way is the Passport going on a CRJ, way different engine. I have spoken with the BBD engineers and asked about re-engining the CRJ, many moons ago when things were much brighter at the BAN and Mirabel, “no way, can’t be done” was the answer. It was in Singapore at the Airshow about ‘09. The Passport came on heavier than planned for the G7500 and caused all kinds of problems.

There isn’t a business case—too much cost for a high risk return.

GF
 
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Fri May 17, 2019 1:32 am

keesje wrote:
lightsaber wrote:
keesje wrote:

Challenge for the MRJ is that the after market & support infrastructure doesn't exist. Few airlines would be ready to set that up completely them selves..

If the current operators, GE and Bombardier and a new owner would have a billion laying around.. https://www.airliners.net/forum/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1422729

Only a billion? Much lower than my estimate. The Passport isn't ready for high cycle duty. Oh, it can be made ready, I see no issue. But besides I creasing the bypass ratio, the subsystems are not ready for 20,000 FC (flight cycles) and 30,000+ hours before the first overhaul.

The nacelle isn't going to survive 80,000 FC either. It is a great design for the Global, an aircraft with a limit of validity of 17,000 cycles:

https://www.ainonline.com/aviation-news ... -certified

Seriously, if any Global sees 12,000 cycles, I would be shocked. CRJs are already passing 60,000 FC, hence the LOV expansion to 80,000 FC. A huge difference in design optimization...

The Passport claims 8% lower fuel burn than comparable engines (BMR-725).

Errr.... That sucks compared to a GTF. Now, it isn't built to compete. It is faster and cheaper. Just as RR did well taking the BMR 715 and putting in a durable BMR720, it still hasn't received the maintenance PIP (too few sold). Overhauls every 8,000 cycles vs. 20,000+ cycles between overhauls for commercial engines.

Oh, both the BMR720 or Passport could do 20,000, but neither has had that billion dollar PIP. Perhaps 2 billion. RR is trying for a lesser number at lower cost per contract with DL. I do not know the status.

Why yes Virginia, the Pearl could be adapted to commercial duty too. The core of both are excellent, they just need different high turbine blades for commercial duty, different turbine clearance control, sump back pressure regulator, low spool, compressor stator linkages, anti ice valves, fuel pumps (durability), a low turbine Clearance control valve (reduced fuel burn), LEAP variable turbine cooling (how the LEAP can compete with the PW1100G), and a totally different nacelles.

But yeah, otherwise ready.

Lightsaber


Of course you couldn't just plug the Passport on a CRJ.. But it has some margin, so could be optimized (lower EGT?) a bit for better time on wing. BPR is not super for the Passports, maybe speed was important as you say. Putting Pratt GTF's on the CRJ.. just don't know, they might have lower dry weights though. However Pratt is the "competitor" here, so little incentive to subsidize anything. The GE Compass has already been put on (the Globals), so might need less effort / negotiating / engineering.. And GE has something to regain.

Image
https://twitter.com/bombardierjets/status/661564085734125568

Of course it could be made ready. My point is this is a multi-billion dollar project, not one billion.

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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Fri May 17, 2019 1:52 am

I think it's time to sunset the line. Instead, a narrower jet that is 4-abreast---a shrink of the 5-abreast A220---should be developed that meets scope clauses without a T-tail. Embraer has this market segment virtually unchallenged right now. The problem is that Bombardier doesn't have money because of CSeries cost overruns and problems at its rail division.
 
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Fri May 17, 2019 2:00 am

Unchallenged no longer, apparently the Japanese will unveil their 76 seat GTF miracle at the paris air show
 
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Fri May 17, 2019 2:26 am

Too bad, it's been a good plane and maybe with some new engines, it can be around for another 10-15 years. The MRJ has been the most delayed in EIS and as such it may be climbing an uphill battle for more orders.
 
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Fri May 17, 2019 8:49 am

Is the GE CF34-8C such a gas guzzler, then? I thought it was still a pretty efficient engine...
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keesje
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Fri May 17, 2019 10:36 am

It seems most (kind of) agree the CRJ is not a bad aircraft that checks many (scope) boxes.

Looking at the current situation at BBD it's hard to be optimistic.

Maybe just like the CSeries (also written off by some), it needs big brother(s). To convince major operators & extend the line 10-15 yrs.

Image

2-3 Billion / 3 years? If they sell 800 that means a 3Mln per frame investment..

I can feel pressure building up in the CRJ community. Something needs to happen, one way or the other.. https://montrealgazette.com/business/local-business/bombardier-workers-vote-66-to-accept-contract-offer
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keesje
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Fri May 17, 2019 10:59 am

CRJ900 wrote:
Is the GE CF34-8C such a gas guzzler, then? I thought it was still a pretty efficient engine...


CF34-8C sfc 35K/0.8 max cruise 0.68, Passport around 8% better, 35K/0.8 max cruise 0.63 ?
BBD intented to recover the CRJ a few years back, but budgets probably evaporated. Apparently there more to improve than just the engines..
https://business.financialpost.com/transportation/bombardier-inc-to-upgrade-crj-regional-jets-after-so-much-focus-on-the-cseries


GalaxyFlyer wrote:
No way is the Passport going on a CRJ, way different engine. I have spoken with the BBD engineers and asked about re-engining the CRJ, many moons ago when things were much brighter at the BAN and Mirabel, “no way, can’t be done” was the answer. It was in Singapore at the Airshow about ‘09. The Passport came on heavier than planned for the G7500 and caused all kinds of problems.

There isn’t a business case—too much cost for a high risk return.

GF


I think it's clear the Passport is very heavy compared to the current engine. Nearly twice a sheavy..
https://www.flightglobal.com/news/artic ... ng-449649/

However in the US there is a scope clause restriction that seems to put the E175-E2 on the side and the CRJ can meet those. The MRJ are so new you have to be entrepreneur to step in. The smaller Pratt GTF's look a bit better then the Passport IMO, but what would be the incentive for Pratt ? ..

:arrow: Still, doing nothing on the CRJ, is also a dramatic decision, with big consequences for BBD, GE, the airlines and supply chains.

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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Fri May 17, 2019 10:56 pm

I find it amazing that the Passport is so much heavier than a similar CF34. Could the CF34 be upgraded? It has been but it's TF34 roots lay in the late sixties, there probably are limits.

Didn't GE offer an engine when the E2 was specified? The SaM146 is even heavier.. and the rest doesn't seem much more efficient than the latest CF34s.

It seems the PW1200/1700G is in a class of of its own here. Introducing that engine on a CRJ would be feasible because it relatively light, but would still take years of development.

Contrary to the E175-E2, it would be scope compliant with 76 seats and 1600NM range though. And that's what at least the US regionals & ALPA are looking for..

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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Fri May 17, 2019 11:06 pm

JayinKitsap wrote:
BBD's rail business is in serious problems - two years after deliveries to the NY subway were to be complete, 120 still to go out of the 300 with delivers shut off until BBD fixes the problems in the units already delivered. There are 4 other major contracts that are teetering at default. Canada's Via Rail did not order BBD recently because of their problems.

Sometimes I wonder how much more money will their rail business produce if they didn't gave everything from tram to metro train to high speed train to China.
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Fri May 17, 2019 11:10 pm

The only way a CRJ gets an engine upgrade is if Airbus buys it. But since that ain't going to happen, we are once again in Fantasyland. But if it did, the CRJ line (A100?) would be instantly canonized by the fanboys here, similar to what happened when the BCSX line got an Airbus sticker slapped over the nameplate.
 
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Fri May 17, 2019 11:12 pm

The E175-E2 is the future of the regional jet market.
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Fri May 17, 2019 11:13 pm

I’ve always thought a re-engined CRJ would be a slam dunk for the US. Every aircraft out there has scope issues and I think BBD could make a new CRJ work perfectly. But it seems they want out of civil aviation so it’s unlikely.
 
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Fri May 17, 2019 11:25 pm

Super80Fan wrote:
The E175-E2 is the future of the regional jet market.


What's left of E2 performance after they make it AA/DL/UA scope compliant? If they don't make it current scope-compliant it's all but DOA, because it's very, very unlikely that scope can be changed cheaply, and there won't be enough of a worldwide market for the 175-E2 without the Big 3 U.S. carriers.

Both Embraer's E-Jet-E2 and Mitsubishi's MRJ families exceed the 76-seat and 39.01t MTOW limits under current contracts, something that effectively bars next generation aircraft from US regional fleets.

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/artic ... sr-446881/
 
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keesje
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Fri May 17, 2019 11:43 pm

ikolkyo wrote:
I’ve always thought a re-engined CRJ would be a slam dunk for the US. Every aircraft out there has scope issues and I think BBD could make a new CRJ work perfectly. But it seems they want out of civil aviation so it’s unlikely.


Indeed the situation the CRJ program is in doesn't look good. There are 1300 CRJ's in operation today, almost all CRJ700 and 900s still fly. Only a few dozen CRJ700's left in the orderbook.

If nothing happens, the CRJ supply chain will soon freeze & be dismantled. Jobs will let go at BBD, GE and the CRJ supply chain. The aftermarket will live on for a few decades slowly shrinking. BBD and GE will have basically left this segment. Looking back the CSeries and lack of a CF34 replacement probably seal it's destiny.

Only a significant well financed, determined buyer could safe the program & I wouldn't know who that would be.. Comac, KAI? How to separate it from the Global Business Jets ?
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Sat May 18, 2019 12:47 am

The CF-34 is a comparatively low compression engine, where the Passport and most modern engines have very much higher compression ratios, hence the weight increases.

No issue separating the CRJ from the Global as there’s no connection to separate.

GF
 
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Sat May 18, 2019 1:48 am

JayinKitsap wrote:
BBD is working to sell off the CRJ, only will have business jets after that. They have no money right now to barely survive, much less certify anything. So any upgrades will be by the buyer, if they are so inclined.

Canada's Via Rail did not order BBD recently because of their problems.


Not true. They went with Siemens as they were cheaper. siemens was cheaper as they were completing a project with similar train sets thus has manufacturing capabilities in north America for trains that Via required. Bombardier didn't had any capabilities to deliver the required trains from any facility in America, so would have required either importing from Europe, or building capability here, which is costly and takes time.
 
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Sat May 18, 2019 2:18 am

MIflyer12 wrote:
Super80Fan wrote:
The E175-E2 is the future of the regional jet market.


What's left of E2 performance after they make it AA/DL/UA scope compliant? If they don't make it current scope-compliant it's all but DOA, because it's very, very unlikely that scope can be changed cheaply, and there won't be enough of a worldwide market for the 175-E2 without the Big 3 U.S. carriers.

Both Embraer's E-Jet-E2 and Mitsubishi's MRJ families exceed the 76-seat and 39.01t MTOW limits under current contracts, something that effectively bars next generation aircraft from US regional fleets.

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/artic ... sr-446881/


Watch the US3 negotiate a payscale with their pilots to fly the 175-E2 at mainline, becoming the new entry-level airframe.
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Sat May 18, 2019 2:34 am

They already have payscales for CRJs, no big breakthrough there, it’s too expensive to operate an E2 at a mainline cost structure.

GF
 
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Sat May 18, 2019 2:38 am

JBo wrote:
MIflyer12 wrote:
Super80Fan wrote:
The E175-E2 is the future of the regional jet market.


What's left of E2 performance after they make it AA/DL/UA scope compliant? If they don't make it current scope-compliant it's all but DOA, because it's very, very unlikely that scope can be changed cheaply, and there won't be enough of a worldwide market for the 175-E2 without the Big 3 U.S. carriers.

Both Embraer's E-Jet-E2 and Mitsubishi's MRJ families exceed the 76-seat and 39.01t MTOW limits under current contracts, something that effectively bars next generation aircraft from US regional fleets.

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/artic ... sr-446881/


Watch the US3 negotiate a payscale with their pilots to fly the 175-E2 at mainline, becoming the new entry-level airframe.

It may be negotiated already, doesn't mean they're going to do it. NOBODY wants to set that precedent.
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Sat May 18, 2019 3:27 am

MIflyer12 wrote:
Super80Fan wrote:
The E175-E2 is the future of the regional jet market.


What's left of E2 performance after they make it AA/DL/UA scope compliant? If they don't make it current scope-compliant it's all but DOA, because it's very, very unlikely that scope can be changed cheaply, and there won't be enough of a worldwide market for the 175-E2 without the Big 3 U.S. carriers.

Both Embraer's E-Jet-E2 and Mitsubishi's MRJ families exceed the 76-seat and 39.01t MTOW limits under current contracts, something that effectively bars next generation aircraft from US regional fleets.

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/artic ... sr-446881/


The only reason I say that is because the ERJ-145, CRJ-200 and CRJ-700 aren't getting any younger and there is no direct replacement for them. All that's going to be left is possibly the CRJ-900, E175-E2, and Mitsubishi MRJ family. The CRJ-200's/700's and E145's are getting older and will be retired sooner than later, and with no direct replacement, one of those planes will either replace them or markets that can currently only take a CRJ-200 or E145 will be discontinued or have reductions in frequency.
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Mon May 20, 2019 3:14 pm

I'd love to see an ERJ-145 / CRJ200 replacement.
However, There won't be any significant investments made in the 50pax regional segment until something major happens:
1. Single Pax Ops
2. Hard range / flight time limits
3. Increased automation to assist the pilot (there's no fly-by-wire 50pax planes available now).
Meanwhile, ATR-42-600 will rule this space..

I'd like to see this proposed CRJ800 as well. But I have a question for the OP (Keesje). You cite a business class w/ 4 across? The CRJ is just too tight at the shoulders at 2+2 to get customers to pay premium, no? I was once upgraded to business on a CRJ900 (forget the carrier?), and it was 1-2 seating. Can your 800NEO design work with 4 rows of business (36" pitch) at 2+1 and then 16 rows of economy (31" pitch) at 2+2?
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Mon May 20, 2019 4:28 pm

jetblueguy22 wrote:
JBo wrote:
MIflyer12 wrote:

What's left of E2 performance after they make it AA/DL/UA scope compliant? If they don't make it current scope-compliant it's all but DOA, because it's very, very unlikely that scope can be changed cheaply, and there won't be enough of a worldwide market for the 175-E2 without the Big 3 U.S. carriers.

Both Embraer's E-Jet-E2 and Mitsubishi's MRJ families exceed the 76-seat and 39.01t MTOW limits under current contracts, something that effectively bars next generation aircraft from US regional fleets.

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/artic ... sr-446881/


Watch the US3 negotiate a payscale with their pilots to fly the 175-E2 at mainline, becoming the new entry-level airframe.

It may be negotiated already, doesn't mean they're going to do it. NOBODY wants to set that precedent.

Some of the majors already have the payscale. E.g., at AA done by MTOW, so no muss or fuss for new lighter aircraft.

The issue is all the costs, not just pilots. At that point, the E2-195 or A220-100 is the minimum viable quantity of passengers to pay for mainline costs. E.g., regional pilots move luggage, or have been seen helping the counter personnel. It isn't just pay, but the layers of rules.

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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Mon May 20, 2019 6:34 pm

Super80Fan wrote:
MIflyer12 wrote:
Super80Fan wrote:
The E175-E2 is the future of the regional jet market.


What's left of E2 performance after they make it AA/DL/UA scope compliant? If they don't make it current scope-compliant it's all but DOA, because it's very, very unlikely that scope can be changed cheaply, and there won't be enough of a worldwide market for the 175-E2 without the Big 3 U.S. carriers.

Both Embraer's E-Jet-E2 and Mitsubishi's MRJ families exceed the 76-seat and 39.01t MTOW limits under current contracts, something that effectively bars next generation aircraft from US regional fleets.

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/artic ... sr-446881/


The only reason I say that is because the ERJ-145, CRJ-200 and CRJ-700 aren't getting any younger and there is no direct replacement for them. All that's going to be left is possibly the CRJ-900, E175-E2, and Mitsubishi MRJ family. The CRJ-200's/700's and E145's are getting older and will be retired sooner than later, and with no direct replacement, one of those planes will either replace them or markets that can currently only take a CRJ-200 or E145 will be discontinued or have reductions in frequency.


If costs (all costs, not just pilots as noted by lightsaber) don't support mainline operations of existing and launching jets, and the business case doesn't support launch of suitable scope-compliant new aircraft, then the routes & frequencies won't be flown. The U.S. Congress isn't going to support a 10X expansion of EAS because airports ranked 150-3xx in annual passenger numbers don't have the routes and frequencies they want.
 
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Mon May 20, 2019 6:51 pm

ODwyerPW wrote:
1. Single Pax Ops


Then a Cessna 150 could do the job :D

Just kidding, I'm sure you meant single pilot ops!!!

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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Mon May 20, 2019 6:56 pm

beechnut wrote:
ODwyerPW wrote:
1. Single Pax Ops


Then a Cessna 150 could do the job :D

Just kidding, I'm sure you meant single pilot ops!!!

Beech


I dunno man, after flight training on the 152, I was pretty sure some days in Kansas I'd get where I was going quicker if I just walked.

I guess technically though the SR-71 just had one pax. That's a ride I could get behind.
The last of the famous international playboys
 
beechnut
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Mon May 20, 2019 7:04 pm

I used to own a C-150. I remember a day with good stiff headwinds flying parallel to the main Montreal to Toronto highway and rail line, being passed by semis and trains...

Eventually made it all the way to a Beech Sundowner before retiring. Bigger, more comfortable, but still slow.

Getting back to single-pilot ops, the big issue in GA with planes that are certified for it (e.g. Pilatus PC-12 or some Cessna Citation variants), has been insurance coverage. Anybody operating a PC12 commercially had to fly with a co-pilot. I'm not sure either the public, or insurance companies, are ready to gamble on single-pilot ops just yet.

Beech
 
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intotheair
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Mon May 20, 2019 7:14 pm

Hard to imagine how anyone could re-engine the CRJ and get it under scope limits in a way that would justify it. The CRJ-900 as it is now weighs 84,500 lbs. Any engine upgrade you'd put on it would put it over the 86,000 lb limit, and a lot has already been stripped out of the airframe to save weight.
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mikejepp
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Mon May 20, 2019 7:23 pm

The entire RJ market segment was based on the availability of cheap labor and outsourcing. Fast forward two decades and it has caught up with itself, word got out about how much people were being taken advantage of and that cheap labor pool dried up.

It was a temporary unbalance in supply and demand that was taken advantage of. That balance has changed. There aren't enough pilots willing to work for a wage that makes the RJ model work and the pilots that do exist have gained enough strength through that same supply and demand that they've been able to hold strong on scope. There is no "designing a new airplane" around this situation.

In the future it is going to come down to the fact that flying airplanes is expensive and if a market can't support 2-3x a day on an airplane the size of an A220/737/A320/etc, it probably isn't worth flying at all. Are airlines really going to continue to maintain ever more expensive alter ego contractors that will have to buy new, yet undesigned airplanes, flown by pilots that don't exist... to chase markets with only 100-200 passengers a day?
 
stburke
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Mon May 20, 2019 7:33 pm

mikejepp wrote:
The entire RJ market segment was based on the availability of cheap labor and outsourcing. Fast forward two decades and it has caught up with itself, word got out about how much people were being taken advantage of and that cheap labor pool dried up.

It was a temporary unbalance in supply and demand that was taken advantage of. That balance has changed. There aren't enough pilots willing to work for a wage that makes the RJ model work and the pilots that do exist have gained enough strength through that same supply and demand that they've been able to hold strong on scope. There is no "designing a new airplane" around this situation.

In the future it is going to come down to the fact that flying airplanes is expensive and if a market can't support 2-3x a day on an airplane the size of an A220/737/A320/etc, it probably isn't worth flying at all. Are airlines really going to continue to maintain ever more expensive alter ego contractors that will have to buy new, yet undesigned airplanes, flown by pilots that don't exist... to chase markets with only 100-200 passengers a day?


It's amazing how people justify killing off small markets to line their own pockets. (Pilots)
Give a pilot a bag of gold and they'll complain how heavy it is.
 
impilot
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Mon May 20, 2019 7:48 pm

stburke wrote:
mikejepp wrote:
The entire RJ market segment was based on the availability of cheap labor and outsourcing. Fast forward two decades and it has caught up with itself, word got out about how much people were being taken advantage of and that cheap labor pool dried up.

It was a temporary unbalance in supply and demand that was taken advantage of. That balance has changed. There aren't enough pilots willing to work for a wage that makes the RJ model work and the pilots that do exist have gained enough strength through that same supply and demand that they've been able to hold strong on scope. There is no "designing a new airplane" around this situation.

In the future it is going to come down to the fact that flying airplanes is expensive and if a market can't support 2-3x a day on an airplane the size of an A220/737/A320/etc, it probably isn't worth flying at all. Are airlines really going to continue to maintain ever more expensive alter ego contractors that will have to buy new, yet undesigned airplanes, flown by pilots that don't exist... to chase markets with only 100-200 passengers a day?


It's amazing how people justify killing off small markets to line their own pockets. (Pilots)

It’s amazing how people justify outsourcing jobs that paid poverty wages (until this shortage hit) for flying jets, which took over $100k and years of training to be able to fly. It’s not about killing off small markets. If US3 can’t fly to them with reasonable labor costs and government subsidies, they aren’t viable markets. They shouldn’t rely on underpaid outsourced labor to survive. Not enough people wanted to pay $100k+ for a job that paid $19-$30k with horrendous schedules. Now we have a shortage. Now wages are becoming more reasonable. Now it's time for US3 mgmt to bring it back in house as they make billions.

The average flyer wants their $99 ticket from small town US to another small town US. Underpaid regional pilots shouldn’t subsidize these routes on top of govt subsidies. Pay up...that goes for US3 mgmt and pax.
 
mikejepp
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Mon May 20, 2019 7:51 pm

stburke wrote:
mikejepp wrote:
The entire RJ market segment was based on the availability of cheap labor and outsourcing. Fast forward two decades and it has caught up with itself, word got out about how much people were being taken advantage of and that cheap labor pool dried up.

It was a temporary unbalance in supply and demand that was taken advantage of. That balance has changed. There aren't enough pilots willing to work for a wage that makes the RJ model work and the pilots that do exist have gained enough strength through that same supply and demand that they've been able to hold strong on scope. There is no "designing a new airplane" around this situation.

In the future it is going to come down to the fact that flying airplanes is expensive and if a market can't support 2-3x a day on an airplane the size of an A220/737/A320/etc, it probably isn't worth flying at all. Are airlines really going to continue to maintain ever more expensive alter ego contractors that will have to buy new, yet undesigned airplanes, flown by pilots that don't exist... to chase markets with only 100-200 passengers a day?


It's amazing how people justify killing off small markets to line their own pockets. (Pilots)


I'm not justifying anything. If it costs you $100 per seat to fly to a market and you can only make $90 given the reality of the situation that exists, then it probably doesn't make sense to fly there. Airlines are businesses that exist to make money based on the environment they operate in. Fortunately, the supply and demand situation for pilots has given them the strength to make sure the $10 missing in this equation doesn't come from them anymore like it used to.

Airlines created this situation based on a mismatch in supply and demand. It has since changed and the business case no longer exists no matter what engines you photoshop onto a CRJ.
 
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ODwyerPW
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Thu May 23, 2019 12:16 am

beechnut wrote:
ODwyerPW wrote:
1. Single Pax Ops

Then a Cessna 150 could do the job :D
Just kidding, I'm sure you meant single pilot ops!!!
Beech


Yeah the casm on single pax ops would not be too favorable in a CRJ-200 replacement. I did mean single pilot ops.
learning never stops.
 
FlyingElvii
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Thu May 23, 2019 5:13 am

downdata wrote:
Unchallenged no longer, apparently the Japanese will unveil their 76 seat GTF miracle at the paris air show


Great! I’ll post a pic when I get back.
 
FlyingSlowly
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Wed May 29, 2019 6:17 pm

keesje wrote:
ikolkyo wrote:
I’ve always thought a re-engined CRJ would be a slam dunk for the US. Every aircraft out there has scope issues and I think BBD could make a new CRJ work perfectly. But it seems they want out of civil aviation so it’s unlikely.


Indeed the situation the CRJ program is in doesn't look good. There are 1300 CRJ's in operation today, almost all CRJ700 and 900s still fly. Only a few dozen CRJ700's left in the orderbook.

If nothing happens, the CRJ supply chain will soon freeze & be dismantled. Jobs will let go at BBD, GE and the CRJ supply chain. The aftermarket will live on for a few decades slowly shrinking. BBD and GE will have basically left this segment. Looking back the CSeries and lack of a CF34 replacement probably seal it's destiny.

Only a significant well financed, determined buyer could safe the program & I wouldn't know who that would be.. Comac, KAI? How to separate it from the Global Business Jets ?


As an actual CRJ pilot with a background in the hard sciences, I continually appreciate your thoughtful design concepts...

First: You hit the nail on the head with a CF-34 replacement. Without a higher pressure-ratio AND significantly higher bypass-ratio turbofan, the CRJ series is going nowhere. Without commitment for a large number of orders, GE is not going to develop it anytime soon. The Passport is not quite the right engine, as it's optimized for high-speed cruise... Even if we can do .82 in the CRJ, airlines don't actually fly their RJs that fast! Additionally, both companies (BBD and GE) have been in recent financial and organizational turmoil...

Second: Of course, the main reason the CRJ series had had such a good run is that it is aerodynamically rather efficient. But compared to other modern aircraft it is a bit more cramped inside. The E2 series and the new MRJ are much more spacious by comparison. Though, I suppose CRJ passengers have about the same space each as in a 6-across B737...But I digress.

Third: Your CRJ 800 concept is **almost** exactly what I thought might happen, were someone to actually modernize the series. Slightly bigger than a CR7, but the CR9 was not really built to the US scope market...It's actually a tiny bit too large. I think with 76 seats, it only needs a single set of overwing exits. It could be two frames frames shorter than the CR9. It would need new avionics. All this would provide significant (OEW) weight savings over the CR9 (lighter electronics, lighter [non-CRT] displays, fewer over-wing doors, single forward baggage door, with a shorter fuselage, and no heavy tail skid needed).

Fourth: The only way I see a sale happening is if they practically give it away to Airbus (as with the CSeries). The CRJ modernized and optimized at 76 seats and possibly a single longer non-scope model would be a complete rounding-out of the expanded Airbus product line. Then they could then capture a complete market flow under one roof (ARJ, A220, A320, A330, A350...)

Fifth: Finally, from a design perspective, there remains something to be said about rear-mounted engines. Especially, with the trend toward ever-higher-bypass ratios of the turbofans, the tail does not have the same limitations on small aircraft as trying to shove the engines under the wing. Even Boeing's recent MAX fiasco illustrates this. This might be the pièce de résistance for the CRJ series that leads to someone buying and modernizing it.

Thanks again, Keesje, for your insights and well-thought out illustrations.
 
GalaxyFlyer
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Wed May 29, 2019 8:36 pm

Problem is most those mods result in moving the CoG aft which worsens the heavier engine CoG problem. The 604 to 605 avionics upgrade requiring moving some components around to balance things out. It was about 400 pounds less forward, they also made standard some options.

The business case, even at a $1 price is hard to make—pretty much a market defined by 76-seat scope contracts with few new growth opportunities.

GF
 
max999
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Thu May 30, 2019 11:10 am

From a passenger's perspective, I would like to say goodbye to the CRJ for its tiny seats, narrow aisles, low ceilings, cramped toilets, and miniscule overhead bins. Let newer and more comfortable regional jets replace it.
All the things I really like to do are either immoral, illegal, or fattening.
 
Mat1776
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Thu May 30, 2019 11:26 am

ODwyerPW wrote:
Yeah the casm on single pax ops would not be too favorable in a CRJ-200 replacement. I did mean single pilot ops.

The comment reminded me of this gem of a trip report:
viewtopic.php?t=973391
 
MIflyer12
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Thu May 30, 2019 12:22 pm

max999 wrote:
From a passenger's perspective, I would like to say goodbye to the CRJ for its tiny seats, narrow aisles, low ceilings, cramped toilets, and miniscule overhead bins. Let newer and more comfortable regional jets replace it.


There's nothing wrong with that viewpoint - you just need to be prepared for fewer frequencies and fewer routes being flown as 76-seat jets replace 50-seat jets. You might get XXX-DFW flown 2x daily instead of 3x, increasing some connection times. And some routes might be dropped all together. It's arguably a better use of pilot hours, however, if you feel there's a 'pilot shortage' or unwillingness to pay pilots.
 
max999
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Thu May 30, 2019 7:24 pm

MIflyer12 wrote:
max999 wrote:
From a passenger's perspective, I would like to say goodbye to the CRJ for its tiny seats, narrow aisles, low ceilings, cramped toilets, and miniscule overhead bins. Let newer and more comfortable regional jets replace it.


There's nothing wrong with that viewpoint - you just need to be prepared for fewer frequencies and fewer routes being flown as 76-seat jets replace 50-seat jets. You might get XXX-DFW flown 2x daily instead of 3x, increasing some connection times. And some routes might be dropped all together. It's arguably a better use of pilot hours, however, if you feel there's a 'pilot shortage' or unwillingness to pay pilots.


I don't like any crj version, even the larger 76 seaters. Entry crj has the same customer unfriendly features I described.
All the things I really like to do are either immoral, illegal, or fattening.
 
MIflyer12
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Thu May 30, 2019 8:49 pm

Whether it's a CR9 or E75, my point is still valid.

Now, if your argument is mainline or nothing, you need to be ready for lots of nothing. Look, for example, at the domestic network of Southwest vs. AA/DL/UA and their regional carriers. Dozens fewer destinations. Thousands fewer total flights. Much lower frequency on many route pairs. RJs allow commercial passenger service in the U.S. to be much more fragmented (in many ways that are useful). Think about how intercon flights worked when the choice was a 747 or DC-10 vs. ETOPS years with 767/A330/787. There are many, many more city pairs.
 
max999
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Thu May 30, 2019 9:49 pm

MIflyer12 wrote:
Whether it's a CR9 or E75, my point is still valid.

Now, if your argument is mainline or nothing, you need to be ready for lots of nothing. Look, for example, at the domestic network of Southwest vs. AA/DL/UA and their regional carriers. Dozens fewer destinations. Thousands fewer total flights. Much lower frequency on many route pairs. RJs allow commercial passenger service in the U.S. to be much more fragmented (in many ways that are useful). Think about how intercon flights worked when the choice was a 747 or DC-10 vs. ETOPS years with 767/A330/787. There are many, many more city pairs.


I think you misread my original statement. I stated newer and more comfortable regional jets should replace the CRJs. I understand the importance of regional jets for certain routings.

I don't consider any CRJ to be comfortable.
All the things I really like to do are either immoral, illegal, or fattening.
 
prestwick
Posts: 15
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Thu May 30, 2019 10:11 pm

How about the bus? Because in the case of many towns that is the alternative.
 
JungleJets
Posts: 3
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Fri May 31, 2019 12:51 am

What a beautiful globalized world: the side effect of the C-series was to put the ejets having to compete against Airbus a much more aggressive adversary in terms of discounts and leasing costs
But the side effect is also a domino effect: now the CRJ have to compete with the Boeing Ejets with discounts and much lower leasing costs. The situation of the CRJs against the Ejets of Embraer was already difficult.
I would like to rename the C-Series to K-Series (Kamikaze) because besides reaching Bombardier itself they hit Embraer, Mitsubishi and even Sukhoi ...
 
eugdjinn
Posts: 163
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Fri May 31, 2019 3:30 pm

How about this for a radical answer: BBD or a clever successor should hold onto the program and then REWING and SHORTEN the 900s to create more 700s

Shocked? Here's the business case: In the US, scope is pretty well a done deal and will hold, at 76 seats max. And in that market, while the 900 may be cheaper to operate than the E175, all three mainlines and even Alaska have chosen the E175 (E1), pretty resoundingly. While there are a few more top off orders for the 900 left to be built, the writing is, sadly, on the wall.

However, the wing spar that once limited the life of the 700 to 20 years give or take can now have a plate added and with regular C-checks allow the frame to fly on for 40+ years - a serious service life. Which means there is money to be made supporting it, provided there are enough in service.... Clearly scope clauses aren't going to allow all of the 900s to fly alongside 175s though and its time to plan a way for them to have that new life.

And here's where it gets fun; United now thinks they want to make 50 seat aircraft out of 700 frames, the newly floated CRJ 550 - a one flight attendant 10 biz seat, 20 econ plus, 20 steerage version - which, is, I'll grant, clever. (When SkyWest took their first 700 someone told me the difference in operating cost between a 200 and a 700 was in essence the cost of the second flight attendant.) Couple that with the AA scope contract where every single 50 seat and 44 seat aircraft can be replaced with a 65-seat configured 700 at no penalty and its clear that the best option available to Doug & Co. is to lay their hands on every 700 frame on earth and install the 'Atmosphere' cabin if it proves itself capable of ending valet checks... and park the 200s and the 140/145 post haste!

According to Wikipedia (o.k. - take it with a grain of salt) there are only 330 700s in the world. But with some 489 900 frames built and more on order, that makes the potential value in the US market of a program to pull a 900 apart, shorten the fuselage plugs that made her a 900 and not a 700, and give her 700 wings a possibly viable program. As I understand it, the engines are the same for the later 700 series and while there are other control differences... recreating her as a 750 might be a worthwhile endeavor. I would leave a little more length in front to keep the forward lavatory, and in back to give a Crew bag closet, and do a slight expansion of the 700 galley so that meals are easily accommodated. That said, I think it has the potential to provide a continuing revenue stream in the secondary market and a real way forward as we look at how to see small cities/markets get served in the future, without cutting frequency by instantly forcing them to mainline aircraft only.

Would it work?
 
GalaxyFlyer
Posts: 3391
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Re: Bombardier CRJ, upgrade or sunset product line? Re-engine after all?

Fri May 31, 2019 3:54 pm

For all that effort and expense, which would require BBD engineering support, they’d just offer new build 700s.

GF

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