629 133349 M66b .
The Boeing 747 David H. Minton
lAB Blue Ridge
Allen County Public Library
R. Wayne, Indiana
FIRST EDITION FIRST PRINTING
TAB/ AERO Books, an imprint is
a division of McGraw-Hill, Inc.
Printed in the United States of America. All rights reserved. responsibility for the use of any of the materials or
nor for the products thereof.
Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Minton, David.
The Boeing 747 p.
/ by David H. Minton. (Aero series v. 40) ;
ISBN 0-8306-3574-2 Boeing 747
629.1 33 '349-dc20
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Cover photograph courtesy of Boeing Commercial Airplane Group.
In the Beginning Bigger and Better First
In Development Two
Big Top and Megatop
Landing Features Electronics
In Detail Engines
Boeing 747 Development
United States Air Force
Iranian Air Force
46 Crashes and Smashes Tenerife 50 Setting Records
Tokyo 57 Aging Aircraft
Appendix: Boeing 747 Fleet Listing Index
acknowledge support from the following: Boeing Commer-
Airplanes, McGraw-Hill, Aviation Data Center, Kit Collectors Clear-
inghouse, and Airliners magazine.
Introduction THIS BOOK
you are an
airliner observer, historian, or modeler, or if
have any interest in the Boeing 747. military and civil versions, both
variants of the
in use, including
discusses the origins of the
design and the evolution of the 747 into a "world class" airplane like no other— probably the single greatest contribution in
meet and mingle. Beginning as a "wide -body"
jet in a class all its
to allowing the people of the
the start, the
evolved into one of the most sophisticated, complex, and cost-efficient aircraft ever It
significant historical events associated with
book chronicles the way, pointing out some of the colorful and
farther than any other aircraft in existence. This
history of the magnificent 747, while along the
including records, terrorism, and acci-
of the most colorful schemes ever put on a 747 are illustrated, together with a
fleet listing. Finally, the
virtually all of the
construction, conversion, and livery tips provided for In short, if
you are interested
models of the 747
many of the most
747, this book has something
In the Beginning LIKE ALL Boeing airplanes, the Model 747 began with an idea. For the 747, the largest commercial
jet in service, the idea
meet a requirement yet unborn, a require-
imaginations— not yet a
in certain people's
not yet discovered.
basic issue concerned projections for air travel in the 21st century.
These projections heralded more: a
more cargo using
and the same airplanes. Some people envisioned an almost steady "airplane in and out of airports using conventional airwould be full of airplanes as people arrived and departed. types were not the answer, because each airplane could hold
conveyer belt" of people being transported planes.
night, the sky
airplanes of existing
wouldn't help, because people wanted
would simply get go
in the way.
simply no place to put more airports.
Bigger and Better more planes and more airports wouldn't meet the need, then the answer had to be bigger And, in Boeing's case, bigger implied a lot bigger. When the Boeing 747 was first conceived, the largest intercontinental airliner in service was the Boeing 707, which
could carry up to 200 people (depending on configuration). tional airport in the
world and was
carriers throughout the world. to fly farther, faster, higher,
in service, at that time,
The 747 was envisioned to 500 people
and carry up
aircraft as the 707. In addition to relieving the
time— over twice
as the 707's replacement, but able
possibility of lower operating costs per passenger, since the
carrying more than twice as
with approximately 70 different
skies, this aircraft offered the
same four engines would be
said and done, the operating cost
perhaps the single most important consideration
Pan American was the first to order the 747 and has used them since the beginning. Seen here in that carrier's most recent markings, with the titles in large letters in Pan Am blue on the fuselage in lieu of a cheat line, N740PA, Clipper Ocean Pearl, a series 121 makes her way across the skies. ,
All carriers (with the exception of
government-owned or subsidized
carriers) are in busi-
a profit and stay in business. In a sense, because airlines were
conceived and fuel was a
cheaper, the profit incentive was not as
a major consideration, as
on a two-aisle wide-bodied
was passenger comfort,
Regulation had been a natural fallout of the original subsidy of the airline companies to carry mail. In the beginning, the ers,
U.S. government was the largest customer of the carri-
paying for the transportation of mail, by
Mail Service (as
across the United States. With the Air
called), a letter could get
about 20 hours, with an average of 18 stops along the way, whereas surface mail (by train) could take up to three days. Passengers were included more by accident than by design.
would have a contract with
pay for the specific route,
and any additions or extra freight— passenger or otherwise— that was carried just happened.
ground service requirements
important and expensive as the aircraft
the involvement of the
became more and more complicated. In this sense, "ground service" included much more than just refueling and loading the jet; it also provided for all of of services and safety
the runways and terminals,
of the landing and instrument aids, and
of the various
navigation aids that were slowly springing up across the United States. In the meantime,
passengers began to provide real income to the carriers, and carrying the mail and other
government merchandise slowly became of secondary rather than primary importance
most of the
between the 747, with its two deck configuration, and the nearwide-body aircraft, the DC-10, is illustrated here. The 747 can carry times as many passengers as the original DC-9 and a little less than twice as in capacity
est similar capacity
about six many as the DC-10 illustrated here.
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Overseas Airways Corporation) later British Airways, was one of the early operators of the 747. Seen here with the gold speedbird on the tail, NM12799B was later delivered as G-ANNA. (British
from the position of being the primary cus-
to subsidizing the various carriers to develop
and provide incentives for
Therefore, the public began to get a deceptive idea of the true cost of air travel.
very beginning, carriers had a real idea of their real operating costs, and the proposed
offered a simple
to decrease these costs.
decrease in costs translated to
profits— the ideal proposition for carriers. Under deregulation, the cost sub-
sidy of the fare structure for the individual carriers
would be removed. With
The 747, largest of the Boeing jetliners, can carry over six times as many people as the Boeing 737, smallest of the Boeing jetliners. Here the first Western Airlines 737 series 200 is seen in the original Indian Head markings.
the actual cost of the fare
would become more important. Unfortunately
much more by
and a domicile
the total operating
one might expect. Thus,
San Francisco, the
for the carriers,
the Direct Operating
a carrier has a domicile in
of operating a modern jetliner between
747 has more directly replaced the intercontinental 707s, widely in use...