why so many planes on the pads at MSP

 
Old Sep 15, 09, 10:19 pm
  #1  
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why so many planes on the pads at MSP

I've never seen more planes sitting on the pads outside the hangars along 494 and at the east end of runway 29L/11R. Any idea why NW/DL has so many planes sitting in and outside of the hangars?
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Old Sep 16, 09, 8:16 am
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Capacity drawdown + DC9-30 retirements + 757-5500 retirements = lots of planes sitting around and not flying passengers.
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Old Sep 16, 09, 5:47 pm
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Also - taxing out of MSP today around 2pm over half the gates on concourse G were plane-less... Not sure what the significance is as I rarely fly mid-week but it made me think of the 'closing MSP' thread that was on here earlier last week...
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Old Sep 16, 09, 7:54 pm
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Very few of these planes were DC9s, many of them were Airbus, and many of them were in new Delta paint. None of them looked like they were awaiting retirement.
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Old Sep 16, 09, 9:20 pm
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Most likely due to the traditional pull down in flying post-Labor Day, which is even more acute this year due to the economic slowdown. I know Atlanta has quite a few more planes that are parked aside as well right now. I'm sure UA and AA are both in similar boats.
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Old Sep 16, 09, 9:30 pm
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Originally Posted by Lyaec350 View Post
Capacity drawdown + DC9-30 retirements + 757-5500 retirements = lots of planes sitting around and not flying passengers.
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Old Sep 16, 09, 9:48 pm
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Originally Posted by COpltASgldPHX View Post
757-5500s refer to the 5500 series of 757s that NW flies - these are the planes with 4 doors on each side with no overwing exits.

The 5600 series of 757 is the same setup as all domestic DL 757s, with 3 doors and 2 overwing exits on each side.
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Old Sep 17, 09, 7:46 am
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Those planes over there in MSP are not retirements. There are a few things going on that are causing more aircraft to be sitting around the airport than usual.
- Capacity draw-down, with the post-Labor Day fall schedule. Fleet utilization is significantly higher during the summer, and it drops off a lot during the fall, more so this year than in other year. It will pick up slightly around the holidays and then again in the winter/spring break period.
- Rolling parking due to capacity decreases - the aircraft remain active and in service, but they may sit for a day or two, and they'll rotate in/out of scheduled service. That way they don't have to put aircraft in more longer term storage in the desert
- Maintenance - with capacity draw-down in the fall, it enables more maintenance work to be done since they have more slack in the fleet. This allows them to catch up on deffered maintenance work.
- Mods: There are 2 757's in MSP getting configured for interport Asia flying
- Painting: While no painting is being done at MSP, DL has increased its paint schedule now that the busy summer season is over, now they are able to start painting A330-200's, and have begun to paint more 757-300's now
- Interior Mods: DL is able to do more interior mods, with the draw-down in capacity
- A319 VIP/Sports Charters: With the NBA season just around the corner, NW/DL is going to be reconfiguring the A319's into the VIP configuration. All but 2 were put back into passenger service over the summer

Yes, the DC-9-30, 40's, and 757-5500's will be leaving the fleet sooner rather than later but for the most part they are not leaving in the immediate future. 3 NW 757-5500's have been sent out to desert and put into storage in the past few weeks. A few more will go over the next month or two. They aren't planning on removing any more DC-9's from service this year, unless any become some problematic or not cost-effective to fix.

The bulk retirements won't happen until after single operating certificate is achieved, ops are merged, and also when DL guts more RJ's from the fleet, primarily due to scope clause reasons.
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Old Sep 17, 09, 8:23 am
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Thanks for the informative post DTWflyer. Great info.
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