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-   -   A380 combi conversion underway (https://www.pprune.org/rumours-news/632223-a380-combi-conversion-underway.html)

chuboy 6th May 2020 02:58

A380 combi conversion underway
 
https://aeronewsglobal.com/lufthansa...go-conversion/

A potentially very interesting use for the A380 given the likely future flying environment, which will surely be focused on consolidating the few travelling pax to hub to hub routes. Keep upper deck for pax, main deck and lower decks for cargo. The whale may live to turn over a buck or two for its operators yet.

LGW Vulture 6th May 2020 04:19

I seem to remember that LHT were at the forefront of the first VVIP A380 conversion. That went well.

This will undoubtedly go the same way.

Pearly White 6th May 2020 04:57


Originally Posted by chuboy (Post 10773872)
https://aeronewsglobal.com/lufthansa...go-conversion/

A potentially very interesting use for the A380 given the likely future flying environment, which will surely be focused on consolidating the few travelling pax to hub to hub routes. Keep upper deck for pax, main deck and lower decks for cargo. The whale may live to turn over a buck or two for its operators yet.

Reportedly Airbus is designing similar mods for the 330 and 350. All change!

glofish 6th May 2020 05:26

Very interesting indeed.

But why on earth would anyone invest in a dead horse?
I bet you could haul more pax and freight with two 330ies (pax + freighter) and the whole operation would even be cheaper.

Please let the whale die in convenient dignity with the excuse of Corona.

White Knight 6th May 2020 05:59

Knew you wouldn't stay quiet for long on this thread glofish:D

DaveReidUK 6th May 2020 06:28

A380 combi conversion underway
 
The article - correctly - does not use the word "combi".

procede 6th May 2020 07:02


Originally Posted by glofish (Post 10773927)
But why on earth would anyone invest in a dead horse?

That could be said right now for the entire aerospace industry, especially the MAX..

Originally Posted by glofish (Post 10773927)
I bet you could haul more pax and freight with two 330ies (pax + freighter) and the whole operation would even be cheaper.

The A380 might carry the same weight, but will be able to carry a lot more volume. Most package freighters are volume limited.

procede 6th May 2020 07:05


Originally Posted by DaveReidUK (Post 10773958)
The article - correctly - does not use the word "combi".

Unloading the top deck might be a bit of an issue.

ATC Watcher 6th May 2020 08:03


Originally Posted by glofish (Post 10773927)
Very interesting indeed.

But why on earth would anyone invest in a dead horse?
Please let the whale die in convenient dignity with the excuse of Corona.

I bet you some said the same about the DC10/MD11 at the time ..

Diverskii 6th May 2020 08:28

Looks like it is just the same solution Airbus has devised for the 330/350 - i.e. PKCs secured to the cabin floor to save pilling boxes up on the seats (still requiring the hand loading of boxes)

Auxiliary freighters useful for the crisis (and retired soon after if I was a betting man)

Less Hair 6th May 2020 09:59

A Combi is something else.

lomapaseo 6th May 2020 10:28


Originally Posted by glofish (Post 10773927)
Very interesting indeed.

But why on earth would anyone invest in a dead horse?
I bet you could haul more pax and freight with two 330ies (pax + freighter) and the whole operation would even be cheaper.

Please let the whale die in convenient dignity with the excuse of Corona.

Hmmm, why did the shipping industry over the sea go to giant container ships? Could it be because it was cheaper to load/unload one ship instead of several at a time?

4runner 6th May 2020 17:18


Originally Posted by lomapaseo (Post 10774193)
Hmmm, why did the shipping industry over the sea go to giant container ships? Could it be because it was cheaper to load/unload one ship instead of several at a time?

dock space is one reason.

Airbubba 6th May 2020 17:31


Originally Posted by DaveReidUK (Post 10773958)
The article - correctly - does not use the word "combi".

Yes, a combi is something else. Very few have been operated in the U.S. as far as I know. There are a couple of civilian registered B-734 combis currently used to carry nukes and commandos for the Department of Energy. Alaska Airlines operated B-734 combis on its Milk Run route ANC-SEA until 2017.

FedEx and UPS each had 10 A380 freighters on order and millions were spent on airport facility upgrades at MEM and SDF before the orders were cancelled.

20driver 6th May 2020 17:59

[QUOTE=Airbubba;10774551]Yes, a combi is something else. Very few have been operated in the U.S. as far as I know. There are a couple of civilian registered B-734 combis currently used to carry nukes and commandos for the Department of Energy. Alaska Airlines operated B-734 combis on its Milk Run route ANC-SEA until 2017.

Canadian North operates several 737 Combis according to their website. I think there are others as well but the airlines serving Northern Canada change a lot. Pretty common for Northern communities at one time.

Airbubba 6th May 2020 18:23

There were some 727 combis made. Reeve Aleutian and Air Mike (Continental Micronesia) operated them I think.

And didn't Eastern and Braniff operate 727 QC's with interiors that could carry seats or pallets?

UPS operated five 727-100s with Rolls engines that had swappable cargo and pax interiors. The interiors were supposed to be usable on any of the five aircraft but, well, the holes didn't exactly line up. ;)

tdracer 6th May 2020 20:04

It would be very, very difficult to certify a combi to the current regulations - note that all the combi's reference above were certified decades ago. The current regulations for fire protection, passenger/freight segregation, etc. make a combi cert far harder than it used to be. Hard to meet for new production aircraft - probably close to impossible for retrofit of an existing aircraft.
The linked article is short on details, but it doesn't sound like they are talking major structural mods (side cargo door and strengthened floor) - rather it's simply provisioning for a package freighter with hand-loading of the cargo (as others have already been doing with other passenger aircraft). Something that could be readily undone when/if the passenger market comes back.
An A380 Package Freighter conversion will still be handicapped by the A380's low MZFW, capping the total payload at about 85 tons - considerably less than the 777F (~100 tons) with far higher operational costs. Further, I don't even want to think about what the turn time of a A380PF would be with the main deck cargo hand loaded :eek:. Probably a niche freighter aircraft at best.

longisland 6th May 2020 20:47


Originally Posted by Airbubba (Post 10774586)
There were some 727 combis made. Reuve Aleutian and Air Mike (Continental Micronesia) operated them I think.

And didn't Eastern and Braniff operate 727 QC's with interiors that could carry seats or pallets?

UPS operated five 727-100s with Rolls engines that had swappable cargo and pax interiors. The interiors were supposed to be usable on any of the five aircraft but, well, the holes didn't exactly line up. ;)

UAL had either 20 or 25 of the 727-100QC (Quick Change) model. Pax seats on pallets or air freight tied down to pallets. The pallets with the passenger seats were stored in a big van like mobile unit.

PSU units folded up when cargo configured. Empty weight was somewhat higher than the standard -100s resulting in a slightly increased burn rate, but fuel was pretty cheap back in the lates 60's and early 70's. When you walked into the cabin you KNEW it was a QC as they were kind of beat-up. Standard freight cargo door on port side.

I remember one particular QC had to be significantly crossed trimmed to fly straight.

One of them crashed on takeoff from KORD (1968?) and was demolished. The 3 pilot crew was injured but all survived. Inadvertent selection of 2deg flaps vice 5deg for takeoff.

Eastern had 727QCs, but I'm not certain about Braniff.

procede 6th May 2020 21:10


Originally Posted by Airbubba (Post 10774551)
Yes, a combi is something else. Very few have been operated in the U.S. as far as I know. There are a couple of civilian registered B-734 combis currently used to carry nukes and commandos for the Department of Energy. Alaska Airlines operated B-734 combis on its Milk Run route ANC-SEA until 2017.

KLM actually brough a 744 combi back from storage a few weeks ago.

JanetFlight 7th May 2020 00:19

Talking about the 380...is this really the end..??? :(

https://simpleflying.com/emirates-a380-is-over/


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