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Delta DC9 "Day Trip" to DTW and BWI

Discussion in 'Trip Experiences' started by Chris, Sep 25, 2012.

  1. Chris

    Chris Hangar Bronze Member III

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    Hey guys,

    About a year ago, my girlfriend and i took our first "day trip" with Delta Airlines just to fly on one of their remaining DC-9 jets- and i wanted to share the experience with you! My favorite plane is the Boeing 727 but i haven't been able to find an airline still flying it commercially, so i figured the DC-9 would be the next closest thing as they're both T-tail aircraft and both use the same engine type.

    Our first day trip was a bit of a disaster. Due to weather and mechanical delays, the trip was miserable. I really couldn't enjoy myself. So, we booked another shortly after!

    We ended up finding a flight with Delta from my hometown airport PVD to DTW-BWI and BWI-DTW-PVD, using a CRJ-200, DC-9-51, DC-9-51, and Airbus A319 respectively for $59 each direction, so we booked it!

    We left PVD for 7:05am on the CRJ-200 Flight# 3961. Here's the gate with an MD-88 in the background.

    [​IMG]

    From aboard the CRJ-200, we were in 11A and 11B. Nice MD-88 next to us! From Delta's seating plan image for the CRJ-200 it appeared row 11 was just aft of the wing, but in reality it's on the wing. There were only 2 rows behind us, and both were rather close to the bathroom for our liking![​IMG]
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    Our drinks. They ran out of orange juice, so the flight attendant offered a solution, to mix orange juice with Cranberry juice, so that's what the girlfriend had.

    [​IMG]

    We got to DTW on time, but waited 40 minutes on the ramp for a plane at our gate to leave. When we finally got off, I ran to McDonalds and got 5 hash browns (my favorite breakfast snack!) and quickly boarded the Dc-9-51 for Flight# 1536. It's really weird, because when we took this day trip last month we were on N777NC, and this time it was the SAME plane! Manufacture date of 1979.

    Here's the view from the DC-9, with another DC-9 next to us, N764NC. We were in seats 23A and 23B, which I found to be the best place for views of both the wing and the engines.

    [​IMG]
     
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  2. Chris

    Chris Hangar Bronze Member III

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    While waiting for everyone else to board, I noticed the first officer of the DC-9 next to us doing a VERY diligent exterior check. He spent literally 5 full minutes walking around the plane checking everything from the tires to the engines. A+ to this pilot! Although I would do the same considering its manufacture date is 1976!
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    I took a short video of the taxi and takeoff and posted it on YouTube. Sorry about the crappy quality, I need a new camera!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rHDwfJlenpM

    I did however get some AMAZING pictures from the sky. There wasn't a cloud between DTW and BWI and we could see the ground the entire time. We were cruising at 29,000ft.

    [​IMG]

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  3. Chris

    Chris Hangar Bronze Member III

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    When we landed at BWI I took a picture of our DC-9 at the gate, N777NC. I believe 777 is good luck?

    [​IMG]

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    After an hour layover we boarded the same plane with the same flight number back to DTW. This time we were seated in seats 23D and 23E, where we had sat last month. It was weird knowing I had been on the same plane only a month earlier!

    A view of the wing from 23E.

    [​IMG]

    An MD-88 next to us.

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    A view of #2 from cruise.

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    When we got to DTW we had a 4 hour layover until our return flight, so we took a tour of DTW which let me tell you, is BEAUTIFUL!! Compared to my local airport PVD (which is the smallest, most boring airport you could imagine) DTW is amazing. Since we don't get anything larger than maybe a 737 here at PVD, I was like a kid in a candy store in DTW.

    Here's a pic from our day trip last month of a Delta 747.

    [​IMG]

    And this time we saw an Air France A340-300!!

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    Here's a pic I took of the beautiful fountain at DTW with a 747 in the background. This is currently my phone's wallpaper and I must say it's AWESOME!

    [​IMG]

    At DTW we took a ride on the trams that take you from one end of the McNamara terminal to the other, which is honestly a necessity as the terminal is SO long! It took me 7 solid minutes to walk (even with the moving walkways) from the McDonalds to gate A15 in the morning without the tram. We took a walk in the tunnel connecting the B/C concourse with the A terminal, which this time had the lights moving with music that was playing- pretty neat! Then we ate at Max&Erma's which was OK. We were going to go to the Chili's they have there, but they didn't have ribs on the menu, which I was looking forward to!! We then visited most of the stores in the airport until it was time for our return flight, #2217 from DTW to PVD.

    Here's a view from row 17 on the A319. Definitely the best seat on the plane for a view of the flaps and what not. In rows 18 and 19 the windows are aligned too far ahead of the seats so you'd have to lean forward to see out the windows. Notice the optical illusion of the tails of the planes next to us? The tails of the 2 planes to our left look like a single tail, pretty cool.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Overall the trip was a complete success! I was a little worried about the first leg on the CRJ-200, with it being Pinnacle Airlines (Delta's regional counterpart), but the flight was very smooth and trouble free. Let me tell you though, the pilots were both VERY young!

    The DC-9-51 was beautiful; although I wished it were a different one than the one we flew on last month (so I could say I flew on two different Dc-9's!). During taxi from DTW I noticed a lot of white smoke coming from the #1 engine, but it went away once we were in the air. I guess it's to be expected though, considering the engines were designed in the early 1960's! The engine sound from those JT8D's is unmistakable and it's very addicting!

    It was a great experience and as a result, we did it again, and again and again! So far, we've made a total of five trips, and are planning to do another very shortly!

    I hope you enjoyed!
     
  4. KennethHolland

    KennethHolland Hangar Silver Member IV Staff Member

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    GREAT report Chris!
     
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  5. FlyerKing17

    FlyerKing17 Administrator

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    This is a great report Chris! Now I want to go on a trip!! :)
     
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  6. Chris

    Chris Hangar Bronze Member III

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    Thanks guys! It really was a pleasant trip. I can't wait to book another!
     
  7. JamesMX

    JamesMX Hangar Bronze Member II

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    That's quite the chronicle Chris. How are you? Glad to see this forum is up. :)
     
  8. Lee Ferrara

    Lee Ferrara Administrator Staff Member

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    Nice Chris!
     
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  9. Chris

    Chris Hangar Bronze Member III

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    Thanks, James! It's nice to see that you've joined the forum! :cool: I've been well, how about yourself??
     
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  10. JamesMX

    JamesMX Hangar Bronze Member II

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    Good...just so busy...but will be spending more time here *wink*
     
  11. Chris

    Chris Hangar Bronze Member III

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    I hope, James! This forum has been in the making for quite some time, but i'm glad it's opened!
     
  12. JamesMX

    JamesMX Hangar Bronze Member II

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    I friggin' love the design....so open and clean.
     
  13. Chris

    Chris Hangar Bronze Member III

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    Me, too!
     
  14. pilot2fly

    pilot2fly Hangar Associate Member IV

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    Nice pictures Chris! I'm glad you had fun on the DC-9. For such an old bird she's still alive indeed!
     
  15. Chris

    Chris Hangar Bronze Member III

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    Thanks! :) I really did enjoy it. The fact that the DC9 is still flying (being 32-37 years old) is a true reflection of how reliable and durable Douglas Aircraft are. With the only FAA airframe certification of 100,000 cycles, it truly sets it apart. Age was a distant second to the experience of sitting in the back of the most well-built aircraft still flying in the US. There's no way of telling how old they are either. NW did a fantastic job of modernizing the interiors.
     
  16. FlyerKing17

    FlyerKing17 Administrator

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    It's amazing they're still flying...and engineering marvel.
     
  17. Everett 757

    Everett 757 Hangar Silver Member VI

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    Thanks Chris, for a very interesting report on your trip, and for really good pictures! I too love the DC-9. I flew on one in September from Nashville, (KBNA) to Atlanta, (KATL). They are a great plane! After seeing your pictures, I can't wait until my next trip on a plane!
     
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  18. WA1

    WA1 Hangar Associate Member III

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    You have made my day by reading your trip report. You have actually documented it very well. Thanks.
     
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  19. brugan

    brugan New Hangar Member

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    Great report! It's nice to see all the NW iron you rode still working well.

    For those of you concerned with the DC-9's age, NW refurbished about 150 of their 9's in 1995 -- new interiors, lavs, galleys, avionics, hush kits and, after airframe inspection, some skin panels.

    Considering the DC-9 family was fully paid for, and similar aircraft were going for $30M+ each, it made great financial sense. The total refit cost was in the neighborhood of $100M.

    Those a/c not refurbished were retired.

    It's now been 18 years since the refit project, and many of those a/c are still in service for DL.

    I'd say it was money well spent, wouldn't you?

    Alas, the era of DC-9's at DL is soon ending, with delivery of 88 B-717's leased from WN (ex-FL a/c) beginning in August.

    brugan
     
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  20. Shawn White

    Shawn White Hangar Silver Member I

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    Unless you're used to it, looking out the window and seeing a wing without an engine on it can be very disconcerting!
     
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