Model 80 Commercial Transport

Model 80 Commercial Transport

Historical Snapshot

In 1928, Boeing introduced America’s first airliner designed specifically for passenger comfort and convenience. The Model 80’s fuselage was made of welded-steel tubing covered with fabric, and its wooden wingtips were removable so the airplane could fit into the primitive hangars along its route.

Despite complaints by pilots accustomed to flying in an open cockpit, the size of the Model 80 required a separate, enclosed flightdeck. The Model 80 carried passengers in a spacious cabin appointed with leather upholstery, reading lamps, forced-air ventilation, and hot and cold running water. The first version carried 12 people, and it was followed by the larger, 18-passenger Model 80A, which made its first flight, Sept. 12, 1929. Ten Model 80As flew for the Boeing airlines.

Ellen Church, a registered nurse, convinced Boeing managers that women could work as stewards, so nurses serving aboard the Model 80A became aviation’s first female flight attendants. They earned $125 for flying 100 hours a month.

    Model 80 Commercial Transport

    Technical Specifications

    First flight July 27, 1928 (Model 80)
    Model number 80A
    Classification Commercial transport
    Span 80 feet
    Length 56 feet 6 inches
    Gross weight 17,500 pounds
    Top speed 138 mph
    Cruising speed 125 mph
    Range 460 miles
    Ceiling 14,000 feet
    Power Three 525-horsepower P&W Hornet engines
    Accommodation 3 crew, 18 passengers, 898 pounds of cargo