Boeing 727

As a result of the big success of the Boeing 707 on long distance routes, at the beginning of the Sixties airlines demanded an aircraft for short and medium distances. So Boeing launched the project 727 after some orders by United and Eastern Airlines in 1960.

To develop the 727 as rentable as possible, Boeing took the fuselage diameter of the 707. The Boeing 727 got three engines, one was placed on the tail, the two others at the side of the end of the fuselage. So Boeing could style the wings extremely aerodynamic and install a complex flap system that made possible that the 727 could be used on extremely short runways about 1500m length. For the first time, an APU (Auxiliary Power Unit) was installed to allow independent electric supply on the ground without the engines.

In October 1963, the first aircraft, a 727-100 was delivered to United Airlines, but it was Eastern Airlines using the new jet in February for the first time in regular service. Short time afterwards the QC version (QuickChange) followed, which has a cargo door at the side and is able to be changed from passenger to cargo service within short time.

In 1967 the second edition of the 727 was launched, the Boeing 727-200, a six metres stretched 727 to satisfy the demand for bigger capacities. The 727-200 is able to transport up to 189 passengers. Northeast was launching customer. However the strechted version meant lower range and so the Boeing 727-200Advanced was presented in 1972 which had more powerful engines and bigger tanks. It got a new interior, too.

The last Boeing 727 were delivered to USAir in 1984 (passenger version) as well as to FedEx (cargo version). Nowadays the passenger version Boeing 727 has become rather seldom. The Boeing 727 is very liked as cargo aircraft however. To fullfill the noise restrictions most of the B727 have new engines or Hush-Kits. This means that Boeings elegant successful model 727 (over 1500 ones were built) will stay a frequent guest on airports for some time.

© LK

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© Lukas Kirchner 2005