why does or who changed the lettering or numbers for aircraf


Recently I visited the New York City Library and looked into archives of many aircraft built by Boeing and Mc Donell Douglas cooperation back in the early severities. Can anyone explain how the book produced by Boeing of production models of the Jumbo jet which was called 747B-100 and today it’s being modified or shortened to B741-100 and the DC10-30 the three engined Tri-jet is now called the MD10 and there is a stretched version called the MD11 of the DC10 aeroplane?. Was this the plane makers that changed this or was it someone who made this up? I noticed this on many aviation sites can anyone assist me with this. :unamused:


When an airline orders 20 747’s they sit down with Boeing and go through all of the possible options available. Avionics, seats, lavatories, gallies etc. When they finalize that list Boeing designates all 747’s built with that list by its own designator. 747-123 for example. To you and me it is just a 747-100. When Boeing came out with a new version it was called the 747-200 etc… More recently ICAO came up with a list of it’s own designators used when filing a flight plan. The 747-100 (all of them) became B741 which is used in flight plans and by aviation buffs.
Regarding the DC-10 it too came in several versions, the -10, -20 etc. Again all different versions of the same basic design. Later in life DC changed to MD, that was a corporate and marketing change that coincided with the production of the MD-11. MD-10’s are modified DC-10’s, McDonnel Douglas and later Boeing never built one from scratch…


es I see your piont but coming back to the DC 10 aeroplane was there a version 15 , 40 series made from the Douglas co operation before the sold out to Boeing :question: :question: :slight_smile:


Yes, the DC10 had -10, -15, 20, 30 and 40 variants produced during it’s lifetime.
I don’t know if you had a question but apparently ICAO decided that a DC-10 is a DC-10 and that ATC would not care which variant a flight was using. Apparently they do care if a 747 is a 100 or a 300.


Here is a list of aircraft ICAO abbreviations. As shown on the list, the DC10 only has one ICAO designation no matter the variant. The B747 has 7 ICAO designations.




These are good points from you guys. But if ATC can tell a 747B is a 100 or 200 300 and so on why cannot they tell the difference between the DC-10’s with there series 10, 15,20,30,40 aircraft/ :laughing:


My memory serves me correct that the DC-10 will remain a DC10 even if Boeing take ove Mc Donnell Douglas. Some how they have become a MD-10. I disagree with that. I have always calle them DC10’S. here as the stretched version is called the MD-11. The Jumbo Jet going back to it’s first flight was called the 747B-100 or the Boeing 747 with the nickname Jumbo Jet. I noticed today it’s changed and being called a B747. That to me is wrong and it confuses many people even people from that error who watched the launching of the first 747B-100 maiden flight.

It is up to the air plane maker to make these changes to there registrations of any type aircraft being built for the customer :laughing: :unamused: :laughing:


You’re correct, they will always be DC-10s, ATC still calls them DC-10s. FedEx is the only operator that took advantage of the conversion program which modernizes that cockpit to be more similar to the newer MD-11.

boeing.com/commercial/aeroma … 02txt.html