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United has accelerated it's retirement of the B747-400 fleet and the last flight of the Whale will be sometime at the end of this year! With the advent of newer, 100,000 plus thrust engines there will be no need in the future for 4 engine aircraft, Boeings own 777 and 787 have saw to that. That is why all the companies that got on board when the A-380 first came out are cancelling their orders. Airbus is going to loose billions on that program, can't be good for them!

We also had the 777 at my last airline and max take-off on that bird was 790,000#! It was only 13,000 pounds less the the 747-300 I was on and had only a two man cockpit and two engines! That is why the classics (-100,-200 and -300) were parked years ago and parted out and why they started parking the 747-400 to part out.

The industry is flooded with spares because so many aircraft were parted and not many companies around the world still fly the 747 so if you are in the overhaul business at an FAA 145 as I am in my retirement job repairs and overhauls for that type are slow as they can buy serviceable units off the ILS for next to nothing.

IDG's (Integrated Drive Generators) that used to sell for $125,000 each overhauled now go for $70,000 overhauled!

Sad end for such a proud bird that first started flying in the late 1960's!

http://www.eveningsun.com/story/tra...nal-boeing-747-flight-come-end-2017/96448866/

Dave
 

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I fly United regularly. As a passenger, the retirement of their 747-400 cant come soon enough. I used to love flying that bird years ago, but since flying the 777 and 787, flying their 747 is pretty unsatisfying - though I still like to fly in the upper deck. United has not updated their 747-400 fleet in 20 years, it seems. I just don't see how they could even update them at this point to work with their new Polaris Business Class. I cant wait to fly new 777-300ER when it comes out. I'm going to try to book their EWR-SFO route in March, just to try it out.
 
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