Re: Short DC-8?

Date:         05 Jun 99 02:09:25 
From:         don@news.daedalus.co.nz (Don Stokes)
Organization: Daedalus Consulting
References:   1
Followups:    1
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In article <airliners.1999.629@ohare.Chicago.COM>,
George M. Gumbert III <gtwister@wku.campuscw.net> wrote:
>Does anybody know if Douglas ever considered making a shorter, lighter
>version of the original DC-8 like Boeing did in evolving the 720 from
>the 707?  This could have swayed DC-8 operators like Eastern and
>United away from the 720 as well as put even more pressure on Convair
>(as if things were not tough enough for them).

I believe the early DC-9 concepts were basically scaled-down -8s, with
Douglas considering selling Caravelles to those wanting something
smaller.

Douglas overstretched itself in designing the -8; it just didn't really
have the design and manufacturing capability to spit out umpteen
different airframe models.  Up until the DC-9 came out, they built only
one basic jet airframe model, albeit with various different engines
hanging off it.

Boeing's multitudes of models also cost it a lot; if Boeing had sold
only as many 707s as Douglas sold DC-8s, it wouldn't have broken even.
Much of the red ink was caused by the development of variants -- but
doing so built market share in a game where airlines needed to be
convinced that Boeing was really serious about selling airliners this
time, instead of just doing a bare minimum of modifications to military
designs as they had been in the past.

-- don