Boeing Model 80
1928
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Boeing Model 80

The growth of operations on Boeing Air Transport's San Francisco-Chicago route resulted in the design and development of a purpose-designed passenger transport, the Boeing Model 80, first flown during August 1928. A large unequal-span biplane, with the lower wing of reduced chord, the Model 80 had a wing structure of wood, fabric-covered, and a fuselage and tail unit of welded steel tube, also fabric-covered. Landing gear was of fixed tailwheel type, and power was provided by three 306kW Pratt & Whitney Wasp radial engines. These were mounted in the classic tri-motor configuration, one in the fuselage nose, and one each side of the fuselage, between the biplane wings.

The main cabin of the Model 80 accommodated 12 passengers, plus a flight stewardess. This was very much an innovation, for although some European airlines had introduced male stewards at an earlier date, Boeing stewardesses, all registered nurses, represented the first of the air hostesses that are now an integral part of civil airline operations. Another feature of the Model 80 was the provision of a separate enclosed flight deck for the pilot and co-pilot/navigator, a development that was not accepted enthusiastically by all flight crew. Four of these aircraft were built, entering service with Boeing Air Transport in the late summer of 1928.

The Model 80s were followed by 10 of the much improved Model 80A, this type having more powerful Pratt & Whitney Hornet engines, refinements to the-wing, improved streamlining and, because of the increased power available, a cabin layout to accommodate a maximum of 18 passengers.


Specification 
 MODELBoeing Model 80A-1
 PASSENGERS18
 ENGINE3 x 391kW Pratt & Whitney Hornet radial piston engines
 WEIGHTS
    Take-off weight7938 kg17500 lb
    Empty weight4800 kg10582 lb
 DIMENSIONS
    Wingspan24.38 m80 ft 0 in
    Length17.22 m57 ft 6 in
    Height4.65 m15 ft 3 in
    Wing area113.34 m21219.98 sq ft
 PERFORMANCE
    Max. speed222 km/h138 mph
    Cruise speed201 km/h125 mph
    Ceiling4265 m14000 ft
    Range740 km460 miles

Comments
R.P.Hatch, 23.02.2015

My Uncle, John W.Preston,Jr., flew the mail in the 80 from S.F. to Cheyenne into extreme headwinds. Said they knew every farmer south and west after force landings and calling for the gas truck to get them the rest of the way.

Gary Redden, 25.03.2013

There is an article in American Airman April 1961 telling about the airplane and Philip Redden saving it from the Anchorage dump. The article also has a photo of the plane in the dump I have a large print of the airplane and Jack Lefler from Boeing thanking Phil for saving the plane.
Philip Redden is also credited for saving The Sikorsky 39 (NC308W) in the New England air Museum
along with Sikorsky 39 NC85V
Redden was the curator and founder of the “Air Transportation Museum” in Anchorage AK
Redden was part of saving a Swallow T.P NC8760, Stinson SM8 and a SM2, Fairchiled 22,
Curtiss Robin, also helped in restoring about a half dozen Stinson 108s
and that is not counting the 100 of Antique cars he saved
The guy from the Anchorage times getting the credit for saving the NC224M has NO record of saving any thing.

Vickie Redden-McCubbin, 06.10.2012

To Craig Vetter and others, Yes, the 80A was towed to the dump. My father, Philip Redden along with my mother, spent hours salvaging the plane from the dump. I recall several evenings (only time they could get permits from the city to tow the oversized plane) them towing the parts and pieces home to our yard and into the shed Dad built for it. He kept the plane there for years until he could get Boeing to fund transporting the plane back to Boeing for restoration. Jack Lefler of Boeing was interested and took charge of the Boeing end of the project. Had it not been for my parents, the plane would have been long gone and rotted away.

Vickie Redden-McCubbin, 06.10.2012

To Craig Vetter and others, Yes, the 80A was towed to the dump. My father, Philip Redden along with my mother, spent hours salvaging the plane from the dump. I recall several evenings (only time they could get permits from the city to tow the oversized plane) them towing the parts and pieces home to our yard and into the shed Dad built for it. He kept the plane there for years until he could get Boeing to fund transporting the plane back to Boeing for restoration. Jack Lefler of Boeing was interested and took charge of the Boeing end of the project. Had it not been for my parents, the plane would have been long gone and rotted away.

Steve homer, 16.06.2012

I also spent time in the cockpit of the "yellow peril" during 1957-1959. I did not know the type or history of the aircraft until reading about it in R E G Davies "Airlines of the United States". I guess sitting in that cockpit implanted a life long interest in aviation in others beside myself. When
you're 10 you don't appreciate the connection to history.

Ray Shaw, 14.07.2011

Re Crag Vetter's comment, I also remember the old yellow Boeing sitting at Merrill Field. The engines had been removed, and the old bird looked pretty forlorn at that time.... Somewhere in my home I'm sure there are also some photos of that Boeing.

Craig Vetter, 30.04.2011

Well, not exactly "found at a garbage dump" It was towed there in 1960 after many efforts to get Boeing interested. This was Bob Reeves'"Yellow Peril" I have pics of the plane parked at Merrill Field if you are interested. I used to climb up and sit in the cockpit.

Gary Kroman, 16.08.2010

The Museum of flight in Seattle, Washington has the only remaining Boeing Model 80 on display. It was found in a garbage dump in Anchorage Alaska and restored.

stephen winkler, 27.03.2007

The Boeing 80 was really the first aircraft used by United Air Lines. It was originally flown by Boeing Air Transport, until she acquired Pacifie Air Transport and the two of them merged with National Air Transport. The fianl addition of Varney Air Lines resulted in the union of four airlines united into one as United Air Lines.
United Air Lines then received the contract to fly the northern coast-to-coast route through Chicago, whille TWA received the central route through St. Louis, and American Airlines received the southern route through Dallas. Much later on, since United Airlines western city was San Francisco, a fourth transcontinental route was awarded to Northwest Air Lines and that route started from Seattle instead of San Francisco.

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