Old Jul 14, 2013, 4:18 am
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Last updated: 03/7/2018

Delta Air Lines Boeing 747-400 Fleet Status/Information

Of 16 frames: 0 Active, 1 Preserved, 15 Retired/Stored,

Registration / Ship# (Delivery Month/Yr): Status/other information

N661US / 6301 (12/89): Preserved at the Delta Flight Museum. Was the first 744 ever built. Last revenue flight was HNL-ATL arriving on the morning of 09/09/15. Arrived at the Delta Flight Museum 04/30/2016 and was renovated to be a permanent exhibit. To learn more about the project visit this website. (DL museum website is here)
N662US / 6302 (03/89): Retired, flew to MZJ on 10/15/17. Was the first 744 (in 2012) to be renovated into the 376 pax configuration after the DL/NW merger.
N663US / 6303 (01/89): SCRAPPED, flew to MZJ on 11/05/15.
N664US / 6304 (04/89): SCRAPPED, en-route (DTW-ICN) over China on 06/17/15, was severely damaged by hail. Temporary repairs to make it air-worthy were made. It flew directly from ICN to MZJ on 07/10/15.
N665US / 6305 (09/89): SCRAPPED, flew to MZJ 12/01/16. Was the first 744 (in 2008) to be re-painted in the Delta livery after the DL/NW merger.
N666US / 6306 (08/89): Retired, flew to MZJ 12/26/17. Was the last 744 (in 2017) to perform a revenue passenger flight (12/19/2017 DL158 ICN-DTW).
N667US / 6307 (07/90): Retired, flew to MZJ 11/18/17.
N668US / 6308 (07/90): Retired, flew to MZJ 12/06/17.
N669US / 6309 (08/90): Retired, flew to MZJ 12/23/17.
N670US / 6310 (08/90): Retired, flew to MZJ 12/26/17.
N671US / 6311 (03/99): Retired, flew to MZJ 09/30/14. Due to 6304's damage, it was pulled from storage on 06/28/15 and re-entered revenue service. Was flown back to MZJ and re-retired on 10/31/15.
N672US / 6312 (07/99): Retired, flew to MZJ 10/01/14.
N673US / 6313 (08/99): Retired, flew to MZJ 10/31/16.
N674US / 6314 (10/99): Retired, flew to MZJ 01/03/18. Was the last 744 in the fleet to retire (in 2018).
N675NW / 6315 (03/02): Retired, flew to MZJ 10/25/15.
N676NW / 6316 (04/02): Retired, flew to MZJ 10/01/14.

Fleet Notes:

Final scheduled flight: DL158 ICN-DTW 12/19/17 (N666US).
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DL 747 fleet operation

Old Jun 6, 2013, 8:03 pm
  #181  
 
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I could see a C check on a 747 taking 3 weeks...especially if problems were found that required fixing.
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Old Jun 6, 2013, 8:06 pm
  #182  
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Originally Posted by motytrah
They could certainly do one in ATL. They have the staff and facilities. Not sure if that's normal for them or if it's outsources like a D check.

Airlines have substancial engineering talent in-house. They don't depend on Boeing for repairs or upgrades.
No, but airline often outsource heavy maintenance to overseas, such as PMNW doing the A330s in Singapore and now more work being outsourced to China.
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Old Jun 6, 2013, 11:23 pm
  #183  
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Originally Posted by WestSideBilly
What plane is spare? A quick check of Flightaware makes it look like they're all flying.
N661US was the "spare" (not really cause it was sick), and now N663US is in ATL for 2 days and counting.
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Old Jun 7, 2013, 5:51 am
  #184  
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Yes they can and do perform C Check in ATL as it is not overly long... ~2 weeks or so for a 747. Lets hope this bird is healthy again for a long time.
D Check it takes months and is almost entirely outsourced to Asia due to the high cost of basically tearing down and rebuilding a good portion of the airplane.
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Old Jun 7, 2013, 6:14 am
  #185  
 
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I think it's worth noting that for a fleet that's over 19 years old in average age, the DL 744s are holding up remarkably well. UA's are a couple years younger on average and are notorious for reliability issues. There are multiple threads on the reliability issues (particularly on the Australia routes) in the UA forum.
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Old Jun 7, 2013, 6:27 am
  #186  
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last week, there was a DL 747 at JFK parked all the way out near the east end of the airport, very far away from the terminals. Parked right near it was the Boeing Dream Lifter. I've never scene a DL 747 parked all the way down there. This was about 1800 hours so while it could have been the bird used for TLV, It was eye catching to see the two 747's, one being the Dream Lifter, parked near one another.
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Old Jun 7, 2013, 6:40 am
  #187  
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Originally Posted by DL2SXM
last week, there was a DL 747 at JFK parked all the way out near the east end of the airport, very far away from the terminals. Parked right near it was the Boeing Dream Lifter. I've never scene a DL 747 parked all the way down there. This was about 1800 hours so while it could have been the bird used for TLV, It was eye catching to see the two 747's, one being the Dream Lifter, parked near one another.
DL did not have any spare 747's in JFK in the last 2 weeks. At 1800 there's only the bird used for JFK-TLV so it must have been that.
Wonder why.. does DL not have enough gates at the new T4 to put the 747 at a gate from 1400 until 0000? Maybe they're parking it far away until evening rush passes through and then brings it in?
Sounds weird. Or maybe it was a one-time thing.
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Old Jun 7, 2013, 7:41 am
  #188  
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Originally Posted by misterbean
DL did not have any spare 747's in JFK in the last 2 weeks. At 1800 there's only the bird used for JFK-TLV so it must have been that.
Wonder why.. does DL not have enough gates at the new T4 to put the 747 at a gate from 1400 until 0000? Maybe they're parking it far away until evening rush passes through and then brings it in?
Sounds weird. Or maybe it was a one-time thing.
I also thought that DL keeps its 747's at JFK parked right near the terminals for flights that are later on in the day, thats what was strange about it, plus the fact that it was parked right next to the dream lifter.
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Old Jun 7, 2013, 9:23 am
  #189  
 
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Originally Posted by MSPeconomist
No, but airline often outsource heavy maintenance to overseas, such as PMNW doing the A330s in Singapore and now more work being outsourced to China.
Indeed. Though I'm sure there are employees at Tech Ops who were around back when D checks and upgrades were done in the US. If they couldn't get an air frame to Asia I'm sure they have options.

NW used to do 747 D checks and upgrades at MSP. I've been told that NW did their own engineering and upgrades when they added Flight Engineer Automation to the older 747s and DC10s (taking over many of the duties a flight engineer traditionally did). They pulled out the entire cockpit and most of the wire in the plane.

Related to the 744 replacements, I believe in filings they indicated an expectation of service until 2018-2020. At that point they have several options, one of which is the 787. While many folks think the plane is dead to DL I will point out that even after DL gave up it's 787 slots they continued working on the program internally, at a considerable expense, for almost 2 years.
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Old Jun 11, 2013, 3:26 pm
  #190  
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DL773 ATL-PDX and DL617 PDX-NRT will be operated with the spare 747 tomorrow, 6/12, instead of a 763. Should be a fun one..
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Old Jun 11, 2013, 5:16 pm
  #191  
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Oh nice, lucky and I'm sure welcome ride for those pax!
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Old Jun 12, 2013, 1:31 pm
  #192  
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I just noticed that DL is using a 747 on NRT-LAX in November.
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Old Jun 12, 2013, 3:00 pm
  #193  
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Originally Posted by MSPeconomist
I just noticed that DL is using a 747 on NRT-LAX in November.
Was mentioned in another thread. Will start 10/27 after NRT-HNL goes back to 1x daily 747. I'm not sure the LAX service will be 747 daily (haven't checked), but interesting to see the capacity increase on west coast-asia routes (SEA and now LAX).
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Old Jun 14, 2013, 1:36 am
  #194  
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The more I think about DL's 747 route selections and ops, the more I realize how much faith DL has in these birds.

747's are unique in DL's fleet in that they have ~100 seats more than any other a/c in the fleet. Therefore, if a 747 goes bad, it's major IRROPS as even a sub widebody can't handle a full flight.

DL currently runs the fleet with 1 spare at NRT with 18 daily departures. Reasonable, I guess, for the summer.

But the interesting move is the route selections and the number or airports that "see" a DL 747.
Right now:
- NRT - 9 daily + 1 spare
- JFK, NGO, DTW, MNL - 2 daily
- ATL, SEA, BKK, HNL, TPE, PVG, TLV - 1 daily

SEA is a new addition, and by the end of October, you can add ICN and LAX to the list (albeit not daily). That's almost as many airports as there are a/c's.
In terms of routes, DL flies 12 routes with the 747's, with two new ones to be added soon (ICN-DTW, LAX-NRT).
For comparison, the 777 fleet (ER&LR) flies 12 routes with 18 much newer a/c's.

In essence, there are a lot of 747-outstations, and since IRROPS are expensive with this a/c type (expensive repositioning and rerouting, not to mention throwing off the rotations of a/c's, crews, etc.), it seems like DL is really confident that the 747's can fly pretty well this summer.

A little surprising given their age (we saw what happened to 661..), and it almost seems like this is the 747s' home-stretch sprint before DL pulls back on the intensity.
Interesting to see what DL's moves will be after the summer and early fall (replacements?).

Thoughts?
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Old Jun 19, 2013, 3:07 pm
  #195  
 
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Will Delta change some of the 744s routes in late summer or early fall.
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