View Full Version : Why does the 737-300 look so out of date?

7th Jan 2002, 20:06
Why does the 737-300 look years out of date in terms of instrumentation, even though it was still being produced upto a year ago? Why didn't Boeing fit the 300 with more advanced instrumentation such as that found in the 777 or the 737-700. Would there have been a huge cost difference to the airlines?

7th Jan 2002, 20:58
maybe its coz they don't make the 300 anymore! I thought that was why easyjet started buying 700's.

Wee Weasley Welshman
8th Jan 2002, 01:52
It might look years out of date to you but to me it is the ultimate on hi-bred cross over incorporating as it does the best of analogue and digital instrumentation.

Allied with the very best safety record in the world when measured by take off/landing events by accident and I think you'll find its the very finest aircraft in the world.

They don't call it the Pocket Rocket for nothing either.

But then I'm biased as hell ;-)


8th Jan 2002, 04:15
WWW, I'm equally biased and glad the 800 and 900 have the same start control panel as the 300 and 400's.

It may because I'm getting older but I'm getting less and less impressed with gadgetitus. It's a disease that many of my colleagues have. They think they can measure their libido by the look and size of the toys that the boss allows them to play with.

The only real and serious improvement that may really make life better and, hopefully, a bit longer for a few of us is the EGPWS with the terrair feature. The lower flightdeck noise level is an other advantage. The rest is, from this pilot's point of view, mainly cosmetics.

As an old -200 captain once told me about the -300: "It's just the same old lady with a facelift"

I presume the -700 to -900 have had a silicon refill on top of that.

:) I still like Mrs Sq as she is. :)

8th Jan 2002, 08:42
I am of the same mind for a lot of this technology.

I flew the 146 for years (and a westwind before that) before training on the 737-300. Never had autobrake or auto-spoilers on the previous two aircraft, and initially I thought "Hey, great! New toys!"

But on reflection ... on my "old" iarcraft, you landed, btuck your feet on the brakes, and deployed the spoilers - no problem, never forgot even once! Now I have to keep in mind all the requirements for auto operation, watch to see that they are actually working etc etc - three times the work for the same systems, twice the error possibility and no appreciable change to the landing. I would prefer it if these two systems were never fitted!

The problem with systems designers is that they get all excited designing things that reduce workload when pilots are not particularly busy, and increase workload when they are. Must be getting old (at 34).

8th Jan 2002, 21:41
I suppose it's probably a case of "if it ain't broke then don't fix it!"

However I recall from my B737-200 course with Boeing in Seattle in 1980 that a few years previously Boeing were concerned about the numbers of their aircraft which were being written off by, shall we say, "third world airlines".

They decided to make certain items which were optional extras a mandatory fit - i.e. autobrake, autospoiler etc etc. Quite simply if you bought Boeing then these items were part of the basic aircraft.

Boeing also insisted that where the type was new to a company their training pilots would do the initial conversions - in other words this "package" was all part of the "sale" of the aircraft.

I believe the result was a considerable reduction in hulls being loss as a result of overruns etc.

Whilst there is no substitute for good airmanship it surely makes common sense to incorporate such features into modern transport aircraft.

9th Jan 2002, 02:57
And nothiong to do with the cockpit, but the 300 way better to work on as an FA!

<ul type="square"> 800 & 900, better wear your sports bra to make sure all assets withstand the rejoininh with mother earth. galley design is suitable for the service of the number of pax on the 300 & 400. On the 8/900 teh whole thing becomes a tragicomic farce of trolleymovements. <img src="rolleyes.gif" border="0"> Not sure who the hell thought of positioning the toilets on the 8/900 so that pax have to walk through the galley's to get to them, but what a perfectly stupid set-up! <img src="mad.gif" border="0"> 3 toilets on the 8/900 too few, lines from here to Tokyo, pax irritate eachother.

WWW, guess I'm biased as well. :)
Sq you're not old! <img src="wink.gif" border="0">

9th Jan 2002, 04:32

I think your lav issues have more to do with your company's "cost cutting" choices than the aircraft itself. The 8/900's are available with 4 lav's including one or two mid-cabin. Have a look at Continental Airlines' website to see it for real: <a href="http://www.continental.com" target="_blank">www.continental.com</a>


9th Jan 2002, 12:12
Mid cabin lavatory <img src="eek.gif" border="0"> <img src="eek.gif" border="0">
Looxury, sheer looxury <img src="wink.gif" border="0">

Guess I should have realized that eh? <img src="smile.gif" border="0">
Thanks LCI.

9th Jan 2002, 17:23
Boeings are called F.L.U.F. 'round this neck of the woods :)

Now the old Diesel 9, that was a 'pocket rocket'WWW. <img src="cool.gif" border="0">

Hew Jampton
9th Jan 2002, 22:40
737s are also known as Clockwork Mice because that's exactly what they look like when taxying, especially when seen from the Tower. For a long time their ATC clearances included a squeak code rather than a squawk code.

10th Jan 2002, 07:13
Anytime Flaps ;-)

15th Jan 2002, 05:47
When the hell was a 737 ever called a "pocket rocket" ???? Only thing the classics are faster than is the 146! The NG's are "pocket rockets" by 737 standards and a very nice airplane to boot.

Back to the original question though. Keeping an airplane looking the same over the years does save a lot on costs. If Boeing had put all the nice 777 gear in a "classic" 737 it would indeed have been at great cost for no appreciable change in aircraft economics. Ultimately they did the right thing and redesign the wings and use better engines as well as incorporate the latest avionics technology. Now the cost was worth the effort. The overhead had remained mostly unchanged as I understand it because the FAA would not allow the common type rating if the modernised the swichology to any great extent. That is it would have been one to many improvements and a separate type rating would have been required.

Wee Weasley Welshman
15th Jan 2002, 17:15
I thought the B733/4/5's had much more available excess thrust than their Airbus equivalents and thus would outclimb them. In my terribly limited experience the 733's with 22k engines certainly seem to have a lot of grunt. I was led to believe that only the original DC9's were even better hooligan machines...

I stand expectant to be corrected <img src="wink.gif" border="0">