We've been together now for forty years,

  Forum Editor 23:59 10 Feb 2009

and it don't seem a day too much.......

My favourite mode of transport is forty years old - seems hard to believe.

click here

  MCE2K5 00:09 11 Feb 2009

She's my Favorite to.

Gatwick - Orlando 6 hours & 40 minutes.

Break out the Coke (Not the Virgin one though, Nasty).

ps Happy 40th Birtday Boeing 747, and all who fly in her.

  Quickbeam 00:20 11 Feb 2009

And essential for any respectable disaster movie in the '70s.

  hansa 00:23 11 Feb 2009

Flew back in one last week from LAX. A bit tatty, but that's the fault of the airline, not the plane.

Bit different from my first international flight in a Viscount. One of the engines wouldn't start so a mechanic climbed up, opened the cowling and gave it a whack with a Monday hammer. Ran sweet as a nut all the way to Venice. Good old BEA!

  perpetual motion 00:40 11 Feb 2009

Never been on one...ive seen them whilst waiting for my plane & they look huge!!

  Si_L 00:58 11 Feb 2009

I've been on my fair share of 747 flights and I'm not a big fan of them, or air travel in general. Too much waiting around at the airport, too many checks, no legroom (at 6 ft 3 this is important to me!) and horrible meals, and you can't really get up and walk around. I don't mind the actual process of flying, apart from the descent as I get quite a sharp pain in my head usually.

Give me a train any day of the year.

  TopCat® 01:36 11 Feb 2009

It was in 1978, and I was on a midnight flight from Heathrow to Nairobi and was seated near the tail section spending my pre-takeoff time admiring the huge, long cabin.

Off we went down the runway with its lights flashing by the window and I looked forward to see the cabin rise very quickly as the plane lifted off. Then came an almighty bang and a scraping sound from right under my feet. I'm sure the guy in control had lifted off too steeply and had caught the runway because of it.

I'm at a loss to think what else it could have been, but other than the takeoff the flight was uneventful. Been on several other 747 flights and all were most comfortable so far.

I also remember an accident investigation some years later, where a 747 suffered a catastrophic cabin pressure loss. I believe that was initially caused by the fuselage near the tail hitting the runway on takeoff.

That plane went back to Boeing for repair to the fuselage and the damaged cabin pressure chamber, which afterwards sadly failed at high altitude with a severe loss of life. The resulting investigation found that the rivets that were installed to seal up that repaired chamber were too short and after a few flights and several pressurisations they eventually failed. TC.

  crosstrainer 07:50 11 Feb 2009

Where has all that time gone? It really doesn't seem 40 years...Since I'm now confined to Flight Sim, and not allowed to travel the skies any longer, seems fitting. Happy 40th to a great aircraft :))

  Demora 08:16 11 Feb 2009

I love the 747. My first flight was also an overnight one to Johannesbutg in 1978. I got a tour and went up to the flight deck after take off from Niarobi.

I'm just hoping its around long enough for my eldest daughter and her partner to pilot it. Both are pilots and have been flying the 'Dash 8' for 2 years. Just been given the Embrayer and they start there training in April.

My youngest doesn't care too much for it as she says she hates closing the doors and some of the kit is heavy for cabin crew.


  newman35 08:32 11 Feb 2009

First time I flew the 747 was to Seattle, and we were taken by bus across the tarmac to the stand. It was only at the steps you realised the enormity of the thing - magnificent!

But, once on, the aircon failed and we all sat there 'melting' (hot summer day) for an hour then someone was despatched for ice creams, and we were all presented with a block of ice cream , Walls I seem to remember.

  Simsy 08:57 11 Feb 2009

It doesn't matter what plane you are on, (I'm talking jet airliners), I was told many years ago, it always takes the same amount of time to "lift off"....

Sure enough, being a bit of an anorak about these things, I always time it, (having nothing better to do!)... From the moment the folk in the cockpit turn the engines up to 11, (Spinal Tap joke there), and you get the gentle thud in your back as the plane suddenly surges forward at the back of the runway, it is always just about 40 seconds until the plane is completely off the ground...

And the speed of a 747, (Jumbo Jet is what it will always be to me), at the moment of lift-off, is remarkably low... If I remember correctly it's only just above 100mph... slower than many cars are capable of. That's for a vehicle weighing something like 100 tons!!

So if we hang some wings out of the windows of our cars and spped up the M1....



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