Ever been on a tiny, cramped plane and wondered how it's still in service? Jalopnik readers know every last one of these planes, and here are the ten worst.
Welcome back to Answers of the Day - our daily Jalopnik feature where we take the best ten responses from the previous day's Question of the Day and shine it up to show off. It's by you and for you, the Jalopnik readers. Enjoy!
Much as we hate being jammed into the middle of a thousand person row on some humongous transatlantic jet, it's really the old, tiny planes still running that grate the most. There are definitely some classics still in the air (check out Buffalo Air's righteous DC-3s for example), but there are some old beaters up there.
We also skipped a few that are only being used in remote parts of the world and instead focused on ones you might actually find yourself in.
Which bad planes did we forget? Let us know in Kinja below.
Photo Credit: Associated Press
Google Continental Express Embraer and the first thing to come up is the time one of the Brazilian planes broke up in flight, killing 14. Not that aging South American turbo-props are very enjoyable when they're running right, either.
Suggested By: stephanon2whls and cloaked2005, Photo Credit: Associated Press
If you're looking to ride some seriously old-ass planes, you can't beat the beacons of the Soviet era still in service today. Reader Sir Halffast had the displeasure of riding on one of these Yak-42s.
I had the misfortune of flying in one on a domestic Ukrainian flight from Kyiv to Donetsk, and was amazed. For one, the top of the entry door is chest high on a 6'0" man. And of course, it has the horrible Soviet seats that fold flat forward with little provocation. And the rear stairway that rattles in flight as if it's about to pop open at any moment. And goodgodifthisthinggoesdownhowwilligetoutofthatfuckingtinydoorbeforeidie???
Suggested By: Sir Halffast, Photo Credit: Associated Press
The Tu-154 is basically how you'd imagine a Soviet plane. It's strong and has plenty of power, once touching down and taking off with no landing gear. Reader MixItUp, however, points out some notable flaws.
However, this plane has a lot of mechanical faults: fires on take-off, engines exploding, electrical failures, etc. At the time it was built it was a fine plane, despite it being a shoddy Soviet airliner, in 1972. Nowadays it is obsolete, too expensive to update, and more often than not improperly maintained. It shouldn't be used in 2013.
Suggested By: MixItUp, Photo Credit: Associated Press
Reader Alex Murel gives a full explanation why you should avoid American Eagle's turbo prop in particular.
It's massively outdated, and the existing fleet is really starting to fall apart. At 5'6" have to duck getting on and most of the time you cant even bring a carry on aboard because 4 bins available are already full before anyone gets on. I understand that turbo props can be more cost efficient for some flights, but these are old and feel like they're shaking the plane apart. 11 of the 508 built have been destroyed in crashes that resulted in the deaths of over 190 people.
Suggested By: Alex Murel, Photo Credit: American Airlines
These things were first built in 1967 and have approximately one crash every 500,000 hours of flying. You don't have to worry though, these are mostly only flown in the third world today. Well, unless you're in northern Canada, because First Air and Canadian North still run them.
Suggested By: SuperFluke, Photo Credit: Boeing
It's old, inefficient, noisy, and readers note that it also smells.
Suggested By: Jayhawk Jake, Photo Credit: Associated Press
757s have a lot of power and are the only narrow body airliner that can cross the Atlantic with a decent payload, so they're not going anywhere. Reader ThePigeon explains why that's a bad thing.
I've unfortunately flown two of these birds recently, and it was not a fun experience all around. It takes forever to unload, they have few upgrades in their cabins, and they have fewer gate options at a lot of airports because they're high off the ground, leading to some longer tarmac delays for gate availability. They are slowly being replaced by A321s and the longer 737 models, but Delta is still running the old Northwest fleet on some big routes. Good riddance to these when they finally disappear.
Suggested By: ThePigeon, Photo Credit: Associated Press
The DC-10 doesn't have crashes like it did in the '70s, when poor maintenance and design flaws could lead to the exciting words "uncontrollable engine failure," but that doesn't make us like it. A DC-10 also killed the Concorde.
Suggested By: owen-magnetic, Photo Credit: Associated Press
Delta and America Airlines still have over 100 of these old things in their fleets, and they remain as cramped, inefficient, and slow as ever.
Suggested By: ChrisFu, Photo Credit: Getty Images
Of the Soviet planes still flying our least favorite is the Il-62, as reader For Sweden explains.
It still uses manual flight controls, no power assist to move those flight control surfaces. If some ice gets in a hinge, it's just your muscles that will break it loose. It also has a history of failed thrust reversers and exploding engines that damage neighboring engines.
Enjoy your next flight East, comrade!
Suggested By: For Sweden, Photo Credit: Associated Press