This 1970s classic is resting in the sun at the south cargo area at Boston’s Logan International in the late afternoon. Built in 1978, N479FE (id: 21461/1337) began it’s life serving the world’s largest operator of 727s – Braniff. It even retains Braniff’s old customer code from Boeing, being a 727-227.
It was one of the first brand-new planes to debut Braniff’s disco-era “ultra” livery and Halston leather interiors, but was put into storage after Braniff’s liquidation in 1982.
20 months later, it was leased to Braniff II – the reincarnated, low-cost, low-frills version of what had been the most stylish airline around. Braniff II, of course, also failed and the aircraft ended up back in storage during the winter of 1990, only to be picked up by FedEx that March and converted soon after.
MANY of the Braniff II 727’s ended up at FedEx, including this plane’s next five linemates, (21462 through 21466). It should be noted that a small number of 727’s actually flew again for yet another incarnation of Braniff in 1991-92 before that one failed too.
N479 now flies with…the world’s largest operator of 727s – FedEx – an wears FedEx’s stage 3 hush kits.
Fedex’s operation in Boston is mainly served by DC10s (really MD10s) and MD11s, and the 722s are likely to eventually be replaced with 752s.
Photographer: Alex Kwanten. Click on the Photo to see it at full size.