Talk:McDonnell Douglas KC-10 Extender

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The article states that there were doubts about the 700+ strong force of KC-135s. Surely the figure is closer to 170 aircraft (1972)? James Fitzy 17:37, 17 October 2006 (UTC)

No, the statement is correct. In the 1970's, the KC-135 fleet was 700+ strong. Even with the retirement and subsequent destruction of many A models, the current KC-135 E & R fleet is still 490 claimed inventory by the USAF.


What's the source for these? A lot of the values match the USAF fact sheet page or are close. But the Ceiling does not. -Fnlayson 23:04, 11 November 2006 (UTC)

I'd say that one qualifies as reliable. I'll update the specs to reflect that source.--chris.lawson 23:33, 11 November 2006 (UTC)

Fuel capacity[edit]

There's this statement Though the 59 Extenders currently in service are greatly outnumbered by the older KC-135 Stratotanker, the KC-10 has a significantly larger fuel capacity. at the top. Is this supposed to say the 59 KC-10s carry more fuel the KC-135 fleet? If so, the wording needs tweaking. Thanks. -Fnlayson 19:14, 14 December 2006 (UTC)

I read it as 'one KC-10 can carry more fuel than one KC-135'. Probably still needs clarifying, though. --Scott Wilson 01:36, 15 December 2006 (UTC)
Maybe. That should be seperate sentences if that's the case. -Fnlayson 04:15, 15 December 2006 (UTC)
Ah, I moved it and reworded that statement. If someone wants to compare the fuel capacity of the KC-10 fleet to the KC-135 fleet, they can reword that or add to it. -Fnlayson 04:32, 15 December 2006 (UTC)

I noticed that this infomation was not listed anywhere in the article, so I thought it should be provided; Maximum KC-10A Fuel Load: 356,000 pounds -- However, due to the basic weight of the aircraft being on average 250,000 lbs, and the Max T/O weight being 590,000 pounds, the Maximum fuel load does not exceed 340,000 lbs. There is NO waiver authority to exceed these limitations.

  • The Max Fuel Load been added to the specifications section. -Fnlayson 03:23, 5 January 2007 (UTC)

So why is there a KC-45 if this is better than the KC-45.Kevin Rutherford 23:59, 29 February 2008 (UTC)

  • The refuelers split the work. KC-10s do strategic (long range) refueling, while KC-135s (and KC-45s will) do tactical (short range, near battle area) refueling. It'll take someone else to give details. -Fnlayson (talk) 00:05, 1 March 2008 (UTC)
  • There are many reasons. Age of the airframes (metal fatigue), capabilities, upgrades since the KC-10 was built, roles to be played, etc, etc. As an example, the C-17 can do many of the things that the C-130 can do, but there are unique things that each can do. Another example is an F-117 versus a B-52. A B-52 can carry far more bombs, so why use an F-117? Answer: because of the capabilities of the aircraft. It should be noted that the KC-45 also has a defensive weapons suite. KC-10s and KC-135s are not equipped in such a manner; if they get shot at, they have to evade by the capabilities of their aircraft alone. — BQZip01 — talk 06:52, 1 March 2008 (UTC)

Two years ago Fnlayson added the 'Max Fuel Load' and then about a year ago he changed this to 'Maximum capacity', whilst keeping the figures the same.

This confuses me rather, for three reasons:

  • Maximum capacity sounds more like a measure of volume than of payload
  • If the KC-10 is a tanker/freighter then I can see than a maximum payload makes more sense than a maximum fuel load but nothing in this article says that this plane can be used as a freighter
  • other AAR planes list the maximum fuel load rather than the maximum payload, see KC-135_Stratotanker, Boeing_KC-767, Northrop_Grumman_KC-45.

FerdinandFrog (talk) 16:52, 24 June 2009 (UTC)

Payload was not part of the label for the 356 Klb of fuel. It is labeled Max Fuel Load in AF fact sheet. But Max [Fuel] Capacity seems more accurate and probably more understandable to most. I had omitted the fuel part. That must have seemed obvious at the time. Should be clear now.. -Fnlayson (talk) 22:06, 24 June 2009 (UTC)

Inventory Numbers[edit]

The Air Force has 59 KC-10's in inventory, but only 58 are in flying condition. The first aircraft scheduled for GATM modification in 2004 was partially modified, but the GATM upgrade program was canceled, and the aircraft was never returned to it's previous configuration. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 02:48, 5 January 2007 (UTC).


Why was the trivia section removed? And are actual KC-10 Aircrews not allowed to add aircraft trivia?

I removed the trivia section because most of the entries had no sources cited. Wikipedia is an encyclopedia, and as such only verifiable sources may be used to add information. First-hand knowledge of aircrew cannot be verifed, and as such counts as original research. However, such users have the ability to spot erros in the text, and can point those out for correction to the other editors, if they do not have verifiable sources to quote from. If there are any more questions on this matter or something else, feel free to ask.
Please see Wikipedia:WikiProject Aircraft/page content#Popular culture, Wikipedia:Avoid trivia sections in articles, and Wikipedia:No original research for guidleins on Trivia sections, and how adding to them may constitutute "original research". - BillCJ 23:39, 5 January 2007 (UTC)


User talk:Dammit added the Netherlands Air Force as a more user in the infobox. I reverted on the grounds that the Dutch aircraft are modified DC-10s and not KC-10s. Although the KDC-10 is mentioned further down in the article!. Anybody else have a view on adding the Netherlands as a user to the infobox? MilborneOne (talk) 16:53, 15 February 2008 (UTC)

  • Adding it seems fine to me. I was going to add a "(KDC-10)" after Royal Netherlands Air Force in the Infobox to clarify. The KC-10 and KDC-10 both seem to be DC-10-30s. I'll have to check in a book to see if they were both -30CFs. -Fnlayson (talk) 17:05, 15 February 2008 (UTC)
T-235 (46956/235) and T-264 (46985/264) are both listed as a KDC-10-30CF and are former Martinair aircraft, T-255 (46987/255) has not been converted as a tanker just as a cargo/passenger aircraft with new floor and cockpit and is described as a DC-10-30CF (was with World and then United). Still dont think they are KC-10s though! particularly as they have or will be modified with new cockpits and freight floors and other mods. MilborneOne (talk) 17:40, 15 February 2008 (UTC)
To me, the issue is one of scope: Should article on particular variants be limited only to those aircraft built as the actual variant named? Second, is the KDC-10 tanker better served by covering it on the main DC-10 page, or by covering it with the other main tanker version of the aircraft? Third, how do we deal with conversions, aircraft which started out as the main type, and then were converted to a type covered on a variant page? Right now, the KDC-10 is mentioned on both pages, but neither go in depth at all into the aircraft and its tanker capabilites. I generally like to cover aircraft with similar roles on the same page as the main variant for that role, regardless of their origin. I especially prefer to do this when the main page is already lengthy, and while the variant page is not. Other editors are more strict, wanting to cover only those aircraft that are actually the named type of the variant page, and cover all aircraft built as the main variants on the main page. It would be very simple to reword the lead paragraph to incliude the refueling tanker conversions, and to add "KDC-10" to the Infobox title line. That would broaden the scope of the article from the beginning, and make clear that it's OK to cover them here, if that is the consensus. KDC-10 already redirects here, and McDonnell Douglas KDC-10 could be also. THis is really a matter of preference, and not so much a right-and-wrong issue. Aircraft variants and sub-models can be very subjective, and it's really not worth it to me to make a huge issue of it. What matters is that we cover the various types, cover them well, and cover them in the least confusing way assuming there is a least-confusing way!) - BillCJ (talk) 21:34, 15 February 2008 (UTC)
Seems a reasonable summary from BillCJ I would be happy with his suggestion to cover tanker conversions on this page. MilborneOne (talk) 22:05, 15 February 2008 (UTC)
so nobody has any objections anymore to adding it? That brings me to another issue: should I increase the number built too? Since the Dutch aircraft weren't really built but converted. - Dammit (talk) 12:01, 18 February 2008 (UTC)
As I originally reverted the change I am happy to remove my objection. Not sure about adding to the infobox though! as the two dutch aircraft are conversions not new build. MilborneOne (talk) 13:09, 18 February 2008 (UTC)
  • I think KDC-10s should be listed seperately from the USAF's 60 KC-10s. I added some labelling to the infobox for this. It's hidden text for now. -Fnlayson (talk) 13:54, 18 February 2008 (UTC)


I have a book - McDonnell Douglas: A Tale of Two Giants, by Bill Yenne, 1985 by Bison Books - that states, on page 164, that "the new USAF tanker was ordered in December 1977". Now, "orders" is not the same as "selected", but we definetely need a source stating the Rumsfeld selected the KC-10A, for 2 reasons: One, the SefDef is not generally the person making the actual selection. Two, Rumsfeld served for Ford, not Carter, thus he left the SecDef post in late January 1977. Good catch, Jeff! - BillCJ (talk) 05:27, 26 February 2008 (UTC)

  • It read more like Rumsfeld was an AF procurement chief than the Sec. of Def. then (first post?). It also seemed to be more a trivia thing to mention his name. The 2 references I checked only mention the 747 and DC-10. The Steffen book says Lockheed did not participate in the competition. It also focused on the range limitations of the C-141 during Op Nickel Glass. -Fnlayson (talk) 05:58, 26 February 2008 (UTC)

Merger proposal[edit]

I propose the merger as it seems sensible to have the project covered in the outcome.--Petebutt (talk) 06:32, 29 December 2014 (UTC)

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