The design and development of the DC-8 began in the early 1950s, but Douglas still believed that the future laid more with efficient turboprop aircraft than jet airliners. This was in contrast to the view held by their competitor Boeing, which was busy developing the 707.
The DC-8 project gathered pace as Douglas sought to win the USAF tanker contract for up to 800 aircraft, but they lost out to Boeing’s 707. Despite this setback the manufacturer continued to develop the DC-8 design and it was announced to the public in July 1955.
Initial orders were good, with the DC-8 attracting a similar number of orders to the 707. The first DC-8, a -10 Series variant, rolled out of the Douglas factory in April 1958 and flew for the first time in late May, shortly after the first 707 took to the skies.
Following its maiden flight the DC-8 went on to break world records for speed, altitude, distance and payload. The aircraft finally entered service for the first time with Delta Air Lines in September 1959. A Douglas DC-8 broke the sound barrier on 21 August 1960 in a controlled dive through 41,000 feet and reached a speed of Mach 1.012 (660 mph/1,062 km/h) which it maintained for 16 seconds. The purpose of the flight was to collect data on a new wing leading-edge design, and in doing so the DC-8 became the first civilian jet airliner to go supersonic.
- Highly functional virtual cockpit with virtually all of the hundreds of switches, knobs and levers animated and functional. Many gauges are modelled in 3D for smooth operation.
- Engineer and Navigator panels are included.The engineer's panel features functioning engine, hydraulic, electrical and fuel systems.
- Full cockpit lighting with atmospheric instrument backlighting.
- Special ‘baked’ textures have been used to present a well-used look and feel to the cockpit area and controls.
- Avionics include full autopilot functionality from the operating period with NAV and ILS approaches, VOR and ADF receivers and displays, transponders and a full communications suite.
- Many features have been added to help with ‘usability’ such as switches to hide the control yokes and co-pilot's seat for a better view of the instruments and preset angled views for the overhead panel, throttle quadrant and radios.
- Numerous warning annunciators will illuminate on fault detection and a fully functional engine fire warning and protection/extinguishing system are built into the cockpit. If you get an engine fire warning, pull the fire handle and the fire will be extinguished.
- Electrics have been authentically modelled to enable correct engine starts with ignition lock-out and over-ride functions for each engine starter.
- Special programming code has been used to re-create the complex fuel storage and delivery systems for each engine - the authenticity is such that one can follow the procedures laid down in official flight manuals for setting up the fuel panels and levers for different situations and, of course, the correct start-up of engine 3, the first engine to be started.
- Specular map to give realistic light effects on the aircraft surfaces.
- Bump mapping to give a more realistic 3D effect to aircraft liveries.
- Realistic wing flex on all variants.
- Custom coding ensures that the systems are faithfully reproduced in this simulation, including unique features such as spoiler ‘lock-out’ when gear is retracted.
- Animated main-gear bogies which will rotate to reduce stress on the tyres and wheels in tight turns.
- Special slats in the leading edges of the wings open ahead of the main flaps and the full slotted-flap system is faithfully reproduced in these models.
- Numerous authentic animations are included such as retractable landing lights, opening pressure valve gate in the tail, rams and operating levers for spoilers, trim-adjustable flying horizontal/elevator tail assembly.
- The landing gear is authentically modelled and animated with all the correct struts and springs and even detailed brake lines and wheel cylinders.
- The real DC-8 has a unique way of employing engine thrust reverse whilst in flight to assist with air braking. The conventional wing spoilers are not used (only as spoilerons and only then with the gear extended). This is all simulated in DC-8 Jetliner!
VARIANTS AND LIVERIES
The Series 10 was the first variant of the DC-8. It was developed for domestic service and was powered by four Pratt & Whitney JT3C-6 turbojets, each producing 13,500lbs of thrust.
The Series 12 was the first variant of the DC-8 to enter airline service. It was developed for domestic service and was powered by four Pratt & Whitney water-injected JT3C-6 engines, each producing 13,500lb of thrust.
- Delta Air lines (N804E)
- United Airlines (N8013U)
The Series 20 introduced the more powerful Pratt & Whitney JT4A-3 turbojets which each produced 15,800lbs of thrust. This additional thrust allowed for a gross weight increase of over 10,000lb.
- United Airlines (N8021U)
- Eastern Air Lines (N8612)
- Air Spain (EC-CAD)
- National Airlines (N6572C)
- Overseas National (N821F)
The Series 30 was an upgraded airframe for use on intercontinental routes. This was achieved through the combination of the JT4A turbojets, a 30% increase in fuel capacity and a strengthened landing gear.
- Scandinavian Airlines (SE-DBA)
- Pan Am (N805PA)
- Swissair (HB-IDA)
- BIAS International (PH-DCA)
- African Safari (5Y-ASA)
The Series 40 was essentially a Series 30 fitted with 17,500lb Rolls-Royce Conway turbofan engines. These engines provided greater efficiency, and a reduction in engine noise emissions and smoke. Despite these benefits the Series 40 failed to sell in great numbers due to the reluctance of US airlines to purchase an airliner fitted with engines manufactured overseas and a desire to wait for the more advanced Pratt & Whitney JT3D turbofan which was due to be introduced.
- Alitalia (I-DIWG)
- CP Air (CF-CPJ)
- Air Canada (CF-TJF)
- Canadian Pacific (N9604Z) - the world’s first supersonic four-engine passenger plane
- Cubana (CU-T1210)
- Air Jamaica (6Y-JME)
Flight files for the project developed by real-world DC-8 engineer and tested by pilots with real-world DC-8 experience. Correct fuel systems and other engine maintenance routines are designed in.
A professionally produced stereo sound set is matched to the different engine types: the Pratt and Whitney JT range of engines of the -10, -20 and -30 with their very distinctive ‘howling’ air start, and another authentic set for the Rolls-Royce Conways
on the -40 version.
Special effects have been created to reproduce the incredible smoke trails these early DC-8 jets produced. Correct reverse thrust smoke has also been modelled and can be seen streaming from the apertures in each engine when reverse thrust is applied.
A comprehensive cockpit guide and flight tutorial is provided in illustrated PDF format.PAINT KIT
A professional standard paint kit is provided for you to create your own liveries.