Fokker F27 Friendship

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Fokker F27 Friendship
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About the Fokker F27 Friendship

After World War II many manufacturers tried to build a so-called 'DC-3 replacement'. The Fokker F27 Friendship was one of the few airliners coming close to this title. The F27 was built in greater numbers than any other western turboprop airliner.
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Studies resulting in the F27 started in 1950. A prototype, with room for 28 seats, first flew on 24 November 1955. The second prototype, flown in January 1957, had a somewhat longer fuselage, accommodating 32 seats.
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The F27 became an aircraft with a high sleek wing and two turboprop engines, Rolls Royce Darts, which proved successful on the earlier Vickers Viscount. Another innovation was the use of pneumatic instead of an hydraulic undercarriage.
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The probably most important innovation was the gluing technique used as construction method. Glued constructions can resist higher stresses and loads than milled or riveted constructions. This means that the construction can be made thinner and lighter. Gluing also results in good characteristics against metal fatigue. The F27 was certified for 90,000 flights (that is 8 flights a day over 30 years).
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The F27 appeared a promising design and the American aircraft manufacturer Fairchild signed an agreement with Fokker about licence production. The first licence-built F-27 made its first flight on 14 April, 1958 and certification followed on 30 July 1958. The Fairchild F-27 differed on details from the Fokker design. It had an hydraulic landing gear instead of a pneumatic one. The Fairchild aircraft also had more seats, forty, a lengthened nose housing a weather radar and more fuel capacity.
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The first delivery of a Fokker Friendship delivery took place to Aer Lingus on November 19, 1958. Fokker developed versions with more powerful engines, military, quick change and combi variants and the stretched Mk.500. Fairchild also developed some new versions, including the stretched FH-227, which is even longer than Fokker's own Mk.500. A special version was the F27 Maritime for fishery patrol, reconnaissence, SAR (search and rescue) and other missions.
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Fokker delivered the last F27s to US airline Air Wisconsin in 1987. Today of all the F27s built, about 150 are still flying. Many F27s have been re-equipped with a large cargo door. In the 1980s Fokker developed the Fokker 50, based on the F27 airframe, as a successor of the Friendship.
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Fokker F27 Air UK

The British airline Air UK, formerly Air Anglia, used Fokker Friendships for connections between Amsterdam Schiphol and a number of regional airports in Britain. Not surprisingly Air UK became a partner of KLM. The airline was renamed KLM uk and later swallowed by KLM Cityhopper, the regional subsidiary of KLM. The photograph shows a F27 Mk.200.



Fokker F27 Troopship

The Fokker F27 appeared attractive to military operators. The Royal Netherlands Air
Force flew nine F27 Mk.300M Troopships plus three 'ordinary' Friendships.



Fairchild F27 DAT

The US aircraft manufacturer Fairchild held a licence for building the Fokker
Friendships for the American market. Some of these F-27s came to Europe,
like this example of the Belgian airline DAT (Delta Air Transport).



Fokker F27 Luxair

Luxair, the national airline of Luxembourg, flew Fokker F27's
on its intra-European network. The aircraft were later replaced by Fokker 50s.





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