Re: B727/737 Passenger/Cargo convertibles

Date:         19 Feb 98 01:34:43 
From:         Antoin Daltun <adaltun@tinet.ie>
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At 04:23 11/02/98, Bob Mann wrote:
>The 7 UPS ships are 727-100 QC aircraft, former passenger aircraft.  Seats
>and overheads are palletized for "easy" installation/removal.

On the original B737QC the "overheads", i.e."hatracks" and passenger
service units, were hinged so that they could be pushed upwards when the
aircraft was being used as a freighter.  At that stage, the racks were
open. The overheads were not removable or palletised.  I suspect the
B727QCs were the same.  Galleys could be palletised, and often were on
B727s, tho' not B737s so far as I know, because removing a galley would not
give an extra cargo pallet position.

Later, about 1975, Boeing introduced a "wide body look" for passenger and
QC B737s where there was a smooth profile and the racks were closed by
doors.  This was left in place permanently and meant that the pallet
profile was restricted compared to a B707 freighter (for example).  The
closed in hatracks were now an FAA safety requirement to prevent passengers
and cabin crew being hit by falling objects.

Later again, much bigger bins became standards and passenger carry-ons have
continued to outpace them!

The problems with QCs were the compromises outweighing the expected higher
utilisation [clash between passenger and cargo demands late evening/early
morning, conversion times], alternative nigh-time uses [passenger
charters], the interior compromises that were needed [high operating
weights due cargo gear, limitations to pallet profile] and the extent of
damage to the passenger amenities from cargo loading.

 A few high quality airlines have introduced B737-300QCs in Europe
realtively recently.  It would be interesting to hear their experiences:
Air France/Inter-l'Aeropostale, Falcon Aviation Sweden (and SAS?)

Antoin Daltun