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DC-8 (piston airliner)

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The Douglas DC-8 was a piston-engined airliner project by Douglas Aircraft.

Based on the cancelled XB-42,[1] the program began shortly after the end of World War Two. It was intended to operate on short- and medium-range routes, carrying between 40 and 48 passengers[2] in a then-novel pressurized cabin[3] (which had been pioneered by the Boeing 307 in 1938, but was still not in standard airline use).

The DC-8 was to use the same Allison V1710s as the XB-42[4] (these rated at Template:Convert),[5] fitted below and immediately behind the cockpit.[6] They were to power contra-rotating propellers in the tail,[7] as in the XB-42, by way of driveshafts under the cabin floor[8] (an arrangement reminiscent of the P-39.) Cabin access would have been by airport stair through a single port-side door.[9]

Despite performance predicted to significantly surpass conventional twin airliners[10] excessive complexity and high development costs[11] (with consequent high sales price and operating costs)[12] meant less-risky types, such as Convair's 240 and Martin's 2-0-2 were preferred,[13] and the DC-8 was dropped before a prototype was built.


  1. Francillon, René J. McDonnell Douglas aircraft since 1920 (Putnam, 1979), p.714.
  2. Francillon, p.714.
  3. Francillon, p.714.
  4. Francillon, p.715.
  5. Francillon, p.714.
  6. Francillon, p.714.
  7. Francillon, p.714 & diagram p.715.
  8. Francillon, p.714.
  9. Francillon, diagram p.715.
  10. Francillon, p.714.
  11. Francillon, p.714.
  12. Francillon, p.714.
  13. Francillon, p.715.


  • Francillon, René J. McDonnell Douglas aircraft since 1920. London : Putnam, 1979.

See also

Related development

See also

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License.
It uses material from the Wikipedia article "DC-8 (piston airliner)".