Date: 26 Jan 98 01:46:30 From: "Matthew Lehde" <email@example.com> Organization: EarthLink Network, Inc. References: 1 2 Followups: 1
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Onat Ahmet wrote in message ... >What happens to airliner prototypes? Do they eventually >get modified to production standards and sold to >airline companies, or do they stay with the maker till >the end? >Are they used for any purpose other than testing >this and that? Boeing kept the 707 prototype, the 367-80, until they donated it to the Smithsonian. Boeing got it back and has it inside plant 2 on the west side of Boeing Field. I think that when Boeing found out that the Smithsonian had this aircraft sitting in a desert boneyard they were not very happy about it and they wanted it back. I'm not 100% sure on that though... maybe someone else can verify that. The 727 prototype was sold to United airlines after it had completed its flight testing. Toward the end of its airframe life it was retired and repainted into the older 60s United scheme and then donated to the Museum of flight. It is currently sitting outside the Museum of Flight's restoration hangar at Paine Field in Everett,WA. The museum is working on getting it in flying condition. I think the most expensive (and important) parts they need right now are the 3 Pratt and Whitney JT8s. I assume the prototype 737-100 was sold to Lufthansa with the rest of them. Later on it was bought by NASA and is used for testing of all kinds. Several months ago it was flown to the Museum of Flight where tours were available. It was here for just a few days. I think there was talk of NASA acquiring a (used) 757 for their new testbed and the prototype 737 getting back to Seattle... Maybe somebody knows more about that. The prototype 747 was kept by Boeing and donated to the Museum of Flight. Boeing leased it for a while for use as a 777 engine testbed... Good thing they did because there were internal engine clearance problems which caused surges on one of the take-offs. This aircraft is sitting at Boeing Field on west side with no engines and fencing around it. Sad to think it may never fly again... The prototype 757 was kept by Boeing at Boeing Field. It sat around for a long time while its red white and blue Boeing livery faded. One day it disappeared and the next time I saw it it was painted in the Boeing White and Grey...kind of Continental Airlines looking, but without the gold stripe. A little while ago it was gone again and it returned with an F-22 nose grafted onto the radome for avionics(radar?) testing for the F-22. Crazy looking to say the least. The prototype 767 was sold to the U.S. Army which grafted a huge fairing on the top of it to house some kind of laser...possibly the kind that shoots down missiles(?) It remained in its original (faded) Boeing livery for a long time, but has been painted into the White and Grey. The 777 prototype is currently being refurbished at the Everett Boeing plant for delivery to United Airlines(?). I was sure hoping they would keep it! Oh well. Was that the prototype A320 that crashed at that airshow in 1980 something? I think a prototype A330 crashed in flight testing. I don't think the prototype A340 has crashed yet... I guess its days are numbered. I don't know about the A300s or A310s, but they're probably okay because they don't have that computer controlled flight computer that can't be disabled. firstname.lastname@example.org matt lehde IF IT'S NOT BOEING I'M NOT GOING!