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Memories of flying the Convair 880 825670622 173 6 minutes reviewed My extremely initial trip on a jet aircraft got on my journey to Kansas City, Missouri, for a work meeting with TWA in 1963. There was a pass waiting on me at the Chicago TWA ticket counter, and also the airplane was a Convair 880. They place me in extraordinary– I really did not understand there was any kind of various other, at the moment. The person hosting’s name was Mary.(TWA never ever made use of the term” stewardess;”we really did not also make use of” steward “up until we began working with men in the late ’60s.)When Mary asked if I took care of a treat, all I might think about was my papa cautioning me never ever to consume anything on a train as if unbelievably pricey. I figured an airplane would certainly be also worse, so I nicely decreased. She once more asked me if I was certain I would certainly not such as a treat when Mary completed her initial course solution. “It’s complimentary,” she stated. Oh, well, I enabled that possibly I would certainly. It was scrumptious as well as can have certified as a lunch, the method airline company food made use of to be. The Convair 880 was the fastest of the first-generation jet airplanes. I assumed the flight was fantastic. Never ever, in my wildest desires can I have actually thought of, that I would certainly be flying one of these in an issue of months! My very first task with TWA was as a Chicago-based”jet 2nd police officer.” The 2nd police officer setting was developed due to the fact that the Airline Pilots Assn.( ALPA ), the TWA pilot’s union, required that the brand-new jets be staffed with 3 pilots. A lot of the elderly jet trip designers(generally technicians) that had actually proceeded to the Lockheed Constellation trip designer setting were not pilot-qualified. Men like me were provided the F/O ground institution as well as copilot check-out, which unexpectedly made us “the 3rd pilot!” We rode in the dive seat behind the captain, primarily being disregarded. The silver lining of this was that I reached discover the procedure and also our business rather well– without being under the stress that I would certainly have been as a “actual” 880 copilot. At the price TWA was increasing I was just a 2nd policeman for concerning 8 months. I after that mosted likely to Connie F/O training as well as flew it for a little much less than a year prior to I was back in training as a CV-880 F/O. My initial years with TWA were a rocket flight! The 880 got on the reducing side of innovation for the time. It was the initial to make use of chemical bonding of steels instead of mechanical bolts. See the 2 manufacturing movies, one from 1958, the various other 1959, for a comprehensive description. 2nd police officers weren’t permitted to fly. In my time as a an S/O I flew one, matter ’em, one brief leg by a good captain that alerted me to, “Go very easy; it’s held with each other just with adhesive.” I after that flew the Convair 880 as an F/O from the summer season of 1965 to the summertime of 1967 and also as captain from 1969 with 1973. Due to the fact that it was such a desire to hand fly, regarding everybody that flew the 880 dropped in love with it. It did have an excellent auto-pilot as well as double trip supervisors, as well as I assume it was our initial airplane to get authorization for CAT II methods. In my point of view it was the most beautiful of the 4 engine jets. The 880 was not without a couple of imperfections. It made use of extremely high airspeeds on departure and also touchdown as it had no wing leading side high lift tools. It was a handful after shedding an outboard engine at V1, and also there was greater than one training trip that wound up “in the mud.” A lot of trip training and also inspecting at that time was performed in the aircraft up until the introduction of the broad body jets and also the later generation of extra advanced simulators with reasonable aesthetic as well as movement. We did a lot of our trip training at Kansas City’s MCI, where our overhaul base lay. Airline company procedures were still at MKC, which today is Kansas City Wheeler Downtown Airport, a bizjet beehive nearly within strolling range of midtown KC. All airline company procedures are currently flown out of Mid-Continent International. (MCI). The 880 did not have windscreen wipers; it had what Convair called “rainfall clear,” which was warm engine compressor hemorrhage air blasting them. When you shut the throttles on touchdown it kind of pooped out when the engines rotated down, it functioned well however was awfully loud as well as. In a hefty rainfall you needed to enter reverse rapidly to rotate them up as well as obtain even more air. The 880 was the only airplane I ever before flew that had nose wheel brakes. Numerous problems needed to be satisfied for them to run: the nose strut needed to be pressed, the wheels focused, as well as both brake pedals needed to be dispirited with each other. If it was defective, there were weight decrease charges. You can additionally go down the primary equipment just to make use of as rate brakes in an emergency situation descent. This can be reconstructed to 375 kts or Mach.88. The wing anti-icing was a warm cutting edge warmed with engine compressor hemorrhage air and also functioned incredibly. If I bear in mind properly, the tail leading sides were heated up electrically. Like many” straight pipeline”jets, the 880 did leave a path of smoke. Like the majority of brushed up wing aircrafts, it had a tendency to enter into Dutch roll so the yaw damper(the tail network of the auto-pilot )was constantly involved following launch as well as disengaged on goal. It was loud and also great smoky however so were the initial 707s and also DC-8s with their non-fan “straight pipeline” engines. The later high bypass proportion engines were extra effective, much quieter, and also really did not smoke a lot on launch. In the very early days a few of us called her “ole smoky” and also to fly it was to be “On Top of Old Smoky,” which was a pop music around that time. And also in some cases we called it a Corvair, or when speaking with a 7 oh 7 pilot, one may claim, “Oh, I’m flying the 8 oh 8! The 880 was the fastest of the first-generation jet airplanes. We might travel it at Mach.85 and also the Mmo was.88. Some assumed that is where Convair thought of the number 880. Since the guest cabin had 88 seats and also 88 home windows, others believed it was. Your assumption is comparable to mine … But the best point that ever before occurred to me on the 880 got on an evening trip from ORD to SFO, when the most beautiful little person hosting I would certainly ever before seen entered the cabin with coffees. Our stopover remained in San Francisco. Sharon as well as I had actually never ever become aware of Don Ho, so I asked her to see and also go what he was everything about. We saw him in a lounge program. We liked him, yet not as high as each various other. We’ve currently been wed for 55 years as well as had 3 kids. 2 came to be professional pilots and also one is our Fire/Rescue Department Chief. To offset a boy-only family members, we currently have 6 granddaughters. Sharon is the only point I ever before took from TWA. Jeff was birthed and also increased in Madison, Wisconsin. He was “nuts concerning planes”prior to he ended up elementary school-and also never ever overcame it! He was much more thinking about flying than education as well as took place to obtain his scores as well as develop time trip advising. He was incredibly lucky to have actually” gone through the ideal door on the appropriate day”and also obtain employed as a pilot by TWA in 1964 at age 22 and also 700 humans resources. overall time. Jeff flew the Connie, DC-9, CV-880, B-747, b-707 as well as l-1011 retiring in 1997. Latest articles by Jeff Hill (see all)

Memories of flying the Convair 880 AirFacts Journal Regarding every person that flew the 880 fell for itdue to the fact that it was such a desire to hand fly. Itdid have an excellent auto-pilot as well as double trip supervisors, and also I assume it was our initial airplane to get authorization for CAT …

a history of aviation gasoline
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A background of air travel gas

Aviation gas has actually been constantly boosting for virtually a century, and also it proceeds today with the advancement of unleaded air travel fuel. Jimmy Doolittle established several rate documents while shedding very early variations of Shell avgas. As much back as the 1930s, the benefits of high-octane air travel fuel(avgas)were identified. When he was …

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Runways, large and small

The majestic Opera House in Sydney Harbour should have attracted my total gaze but I was more interested in catching a glimpse of the nighttime runway lights at Charles Kingsford Smith Airport as our Ansett Airbus banked steeply for its final approach. The bright lights welcomed our arrival and my jump seat (two months before …

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Wolfgang Langewiesche on pilot proficiency

A Ladder to Climb By Wolfgang Langewiesche Editor’s note: We’re diving into the Air Facts archives for another thought-provoking article from legendary pilot and author Wolfgang Langewiesche. In “A Ladder to Climb,” which first appeared in the the August 1970 edition of Air Facts, he argues that pilots need to step up their game and offers a …