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Discussion in 'AviatorChat.com' started by Tcar, Jul 15, 2017.
707 flew for the first time today in 1954.
Remember it, Bob?
63 years ago. All the crews flying various KC-135 versions (not based on the 707, but close enough) are younger than the aircraft. USAF does still fly some 707 based aircraft, too, although there are plans to replace all of them.
For a second or two I was thinking that you had your dates wrong until I realized that you were referring to the 367-80, 707 prototype. I guess that you are more correct because the actual model number was 707. Yes, I do rememberer it because I was parked parallel to the runway. I had to dig a bit to find my painting of the event.
The KC-135 (model 717) was the first production iteration of the -80 and was a bit larger and way heavier. The configuration and planform was used for the production of the 707 but that airplane was a bit larger in the upper lobe than the KC-135 and something like 25K pounds lighter. The structure was "shaved down" in places and there was no need for the heavy fuel tanks and battleship style structure. Outward appearance was the same except for the crease line on the 707 where the upper lobe met the waterline of the deck. And the upper tangent line where the constant section met the curvature of the cab was moved aft for 36". It's hard to believe that I worked on all that stuff and I am out to pasture and the airplanes are still going and that includes the B-52.
Sorry, I meant the prototype, the -80.
Thanks, didn't know those details... very interesting, Bob...
Yes, the B-52 is even older (2 years older or so).
Think I posted this before, but there is a B-52 pilot whose father was a B-52 pilot and also his grandfather was a B-52 pilot. Will they make 4 generations?????
I used to wonder why there were no 'stretched' 707's like the DC-8's that were sooo long.
I think you said that the shorter landing gear legs of the 707 precluded a stretch as it was too low to rotate with a longer fuselage. An early design decision that affected future development.
That's correct in every word. Same design glitch on the 737. Not so on the 747, 757, 767,777, and 787. Long landing gear legs are quite heavy and weight was a big issue on the 707-120.
I still remember traveling in one of those as a kid back in the late 70s.
Doesn't Travolta own one?
Isn't the 737-800 longer? I know they seat more on Southwest Airlines. Maybe something else changed?
Yup, an ex-Qantas 707-138.
I don't know, Bob, the 737 has been stretched a number of times now...
My favorite 707 story is about the time that my family and I flew from SJU to JFK on Thanksgiving Day so that my mom could say goodbye to her brother, who was dying of cancer. Purely by chance, the 707 that Pan Am assigned for our flight was the Jet Clipper Mayflower! (Remember, this was on Thanksgiving Day.)
But it was shorter than the 707 to begin with.
It was sort of a 707 with a couple fuselage sections removed and shorter wings.
"Hey - lets go take the 707 out back for a spin!"
It all has to do with pitch angles from the main gear to the tail strike point. Nose gear lengthening is helping and I think that they are playing with a tricky landing gear now. Been looking at that for years.
My first flight in a 707 was a Pan-Am jet from Oslo, Norway to Ildewild Airport, NY in 1961. Chapped my family off because we were slated to come back on an ocean liner before USAF dictated all its overseas returns would be by airplane rather than ship. I was excited, though. Previously, all I had flown in was a C-47. A bit different in performance.
Good memories, Taz. In 1961 I had started working on 727 stuff, along with 720B, KC-135, 707-320, and on and on. I think about those hectic but enjoyable days a lot.
Interesting, since it was really the 707 and DC-8 that, for all intents and purposes, killed off the ocean liner business. Only Cunard continues to operate a true ocean liner (as distinguished from cruise ships) to this day.
OT: Interesting distinction I had never really thought about.. so I turned to https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ocean_liner for their take.. what's your distinction between the 2? Technical or design differences? or the people on board? The typical route taken?
I've only ever been on one, I guess a "cruise ship" for the Inside passage from AK.. and not crossing the Atlantic A-B as such.
Alex- Ocean liners were designed to deliver people and cargo, including cars, from major city A to major city B across major bodies of water in relatively short periods of time. Took one from New York to Oslo on the Stavangerfjord in 1958. Cruise ships are designed to entertain passengers while incidentally crossing bodies of water, often with frequent stops at ports of interest, and often ending up at the same place from which they departed.
Tex Johnston demonstrating Boeing's new airplane...
The way I look at it, ocean liners go from A to B. Cruise ships go from A to B (and usually C, D, E...) and then back to A. One is transportation, the other just a fun trip. But in their later years, ocean liners did some cruising as well, and the onboard amenities for both would be similar.
I was there and I have written about it several times how I was standing there with a movie camera shooting him coming in and when he pulled up and started the roll I was so shocked that I dropped the camera to my side and watched the whole thing. A guy standing beside me said that my comment about the airplane doing a roll was incorrect . After the second one going south, I asked him what was that was and there was no answer. I don't know why Tex referred to it as a chandelle because it was nothing like a chandelle, it was an aileron roll, all at one G. I knew one of the flight test engineers who was aboard and he said that if his eyes were closed he would never have known what happened. He said that Tex practiced it at altitude before he did it over the God Cup race course so it wasn't an impulsive event.
lol What a great story! How cool! I bet that was quite a jaw dropper! I thought it odd he referred to it as a chandelle as well. Just an aileron roll...but still...
I've got about 1500 hrs in the 135. 6 years in the Tennessee Air Guard....back in the 80's. Nothing like a Boeing. Even that one...
Good for you! I'm assuming that you refer to the KC-135. If so, what a great airplane! I had to dig to see if I had a small enough picture of the progenitor. I'll keep digging.
I thought that odd too. I wondered how he knew exactly what that thing would do....(altitude wise)...before he did that so close to the ground.
Now I know. He'd already figured that out. I figured he had to have already done it up high. That's just not something you do in a plane so low without knowing what's coming...
Trying to shrink the image again.
So, Bob, I started this thread and got to thinking... so I pulled out your "Crystal Set..." book and re-read your adventures with the KC and the 707... and 720, etc.
Good read the third time, Bob...
BTW, love the frontpiece... my best friend and I and his Dad restored a Model A Roadster when we were in HS/College. Won a ribbon at the National Model A convention in Albuquerque that summer.
Beautiful homily for your brother.
I made a list of all the Boeing planes I have flown on
I don't count the Douglas planes that were adopted in the merger.
Not many have flow a 707 but I did as a kid -- Phoenix to Chicago non stop. My FIRST plane flight -- and the only time I was airsick!
Prettier that what they're building now. nice lines
You have flown on more of them than I have. I have been on all except the 777 and 787. I still think that the 707-120 was the prettiest of all.
Even fewer flown a B-17!
Bob- You missed the 720 on your list and I bet you flew on one. I know I did.
Other Bob- Did you ever get a ride in the 247 they restored?
Its possible but I do remember the 707 from my childhood. The 727 and 737 pretty much phased them out quickly along with the competitor 4 engine models.
Bob- Most folks could not tell a 707 from a 720 at first glance, anyway. Another short fuselage hot rod like the 747 SP. Last one flew back in 2012, so they are all beer cans, now, unless someone stashed one in a museum.
There are still some SP's flying... The Sands in 'Vegas flies a couple of them, or at least still did last year.
I think there are still some flying in Saudi Arabia... or were, recently.
They're pretty distinctive... so short and fat with that huge tail, but you're right, most would not notice.
The 720 was slightly shortened and lightened where the SP was severely shortened forward and aft. Some pilots referred to it as a four engined fighter, fast, maneuverable, and fun to fly. Leaving Heathrow on a UAL SP that was acquired from PAA we were 1 hour late for take off due to heavy incoming traffic. The pilot told the passengers not to worry about making their connections in Seattle Because, "This airplane can and will make up the time and that it would land on schedule (1100)".We did. Great flight both ways.
I flew on a few 720B's but the most fun was aboard one on a production test flight where they wracked it around with steep banks and simulated emergency let down. Truly a hotrod. When we took off from BFI all you could see ahead was blue sky until we leveled off at 30,000 over the Olympics ten minutes later..
I've flown on both the 747 sp and the 747 Combi (half cargo) version. Also the latest 747-8 that Lufthansa flies.
I flew on a 707 in Africa in the 1990s Nairobi to Harare, I think...
T- I was talking about the 720. Last 720B flight was in May 2012.
My Boeing list would be:
707 (-120 only)
737 (all 3 generations)
747 (-100 and -200 only)
757 (-200 only)
767 (all 3 lengths)
777 (-200 only)
Haven't caught up with a 787 just yet.
Oops... I see that now.
C- on reading comprehension....
720 was short-lived.
my Boeing list :
717 I know grey area here as it started out as a McD design
737 all 3 gens
Almost flew on FiFi B-29 except the flight was canceled due to engine issue
on my to fly list
Maybe I have posted this before but it is interesting. UAL was searching for a medium range airplane, something a little smaller than the 707 and for more continental routes. Boeing was studying the possibility of a light weight 707 with a lighter engine. P&W was studying a lighter JT3 to fit it and the process was too slow for Bill Patterson of UAL so he approached Convair about the 880. The story says that Patterson was in San Diego within minutes of signing a contract for 880's when he got a phone call from Bill Allen guaranteeing a light weight (titanium) engine from P&W that would make the 720 viable. Patterson turned around and flew up to Boeing and signed for 20 720's. It was a nice airplane but when the 720B came out with the JT3D fan it became a high performance hotrod as well as a hot seller. I remember on one test flight the pilot, Scotty, held it down until the uneven surface of the runway felt like a cobblestone road and when he lifted off , it was nothing but a steep climb and blue sky ahead.
The 717 model number for an MD ??? was a marketing gimmick by some Boeing sales people who failed to recognize that that model number had already been assigned to what would become the KC-135. They thought that it was SOO tricky to put the Boeing jet airliner series number mixed with the single aisle (1) and the last part being 7 to make 717. Tough to explain the un-airplane people. I flew the PT-17 and have flown on all the rest in your list.
That wasn't the 'REAL' 717...
The real 717 was the KC-135.
Bob yes I realize that the 717 aka MD-95 is not a true Boeing design. When Boeing announced that it would be called the 717 I thought WTF the KC-135 is the 717. I only flew on one once on AirTran and almost burst out in laughter when the flight attendant called it the "Boeing 717-200" during the safety brief.
The one thing I did like was the 2-3 seating As well I like the 2-3-2 seating on the 767 also as my preferred seat is a window seat. that way I only have to bother 1 person to go to the can or get something out of the overhead.
So that is what that was. Flew on one with 3-2 seating (or 2-3, forget which), and wondered what it was. Looked just like any other DC-9 variant to me from the outside. Guess I was not curious enough to look at the brochure.
Terry all the MD8x and MD9x are 2-3 or 3-2 depending on how the airline wants to configure the in the "Cattlecar" class. On the plus side most of them have an 18" wide coach seat vs. 17.3" on most others.
I flew an MD80 from DFW-ABQ in 1st once and it was a very quiet ride up front, until we landed and the nose gear started to shake to entire plane turning off the runway.