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Boeing 737-200 (N462GB) - KSJC - Air California arrival from So California - showing the "air stairs" being deployed for passengers front/back to de-plane. 35mm slide scan Minolta SRT-102
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Boeing 737-200 (N462GB)


KSJC - Air California arrival from So California - showing the "air stairs" being deployed for passengers front/back to de-plane. 35mm slide scan Minolta SRT-102


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Gary Schenauer
Ah, yeah. The 200 series. I LUVed the crackle of those JT8Ds when it would come hammerin' off a runway. A Full House of Fives for this one, my friend.
Gavin Hughes
Super pic Tom, great piece of history. I've got a few pics of the old 737s here with the air stairs in use on the forward door but with mobile air-stairs for the rear. I'm not certain ours, which were flown by Ansett, even had the rear stairs. BUT 727s...that was different of course. Used to love walking out across the tarmac with the sights, sounds and smells then under the engines to climb the rear stairs.
I loved those old planes.... Those are the ones that I cut my teeth on in my early maintenance days. they were a fun plane to work on and very reliable... I hated working on those Air Stairs, and I do not know many mechanics who did.... But it did offer some versatility at the time as there were few stations with jetways at the time.
C.W. Reed
5 stars Tom! A real blast from the past! Very common sight at KFAT back in the day. Keep the vintage pics coming our way! Cheers!!

Tom VancePhoto Uploader
Gman_ Gavin, Sparkie and Cdub, thanks for the Comps, I'll try to post oldies when able, Thanks to Gman for the email.
Gavin Hughes
Hi Tom...never bothered before, but couldn't resist having a play around with this in PS to try to bring the color back just to get an idea of what it would have looked like. Came up a treat. Don't be concerned though about nefarious activities with your pic. It was only for my curiosity and was deleted immediately.
Alan Hume
Air stairs??? Do the modern versions even have them now? Those JT8D engines show why the 737 series had such a short undercarriage and why the engines on the 737MAX just don't fit. Time for Boeing to design a new aircraft for this segment.
Richard Rohrer
Super picture. I was telling my wife the other day about the 737 short landing gear to accommodate the the on board “air stairs”. Glad to be able to show her this picture. Quite the graphic on the nose.
frank theriault
Lauri Lipponen
If I had to guess, you were shooting Ektachrome film through a tinted window. Nice picture. Love the old stuff.
David Seider
737-293, L/N 20
AFAIK, the option for air stairs aft was a rarity
Jim Smirh
Flew this model for less than a year; company found they could sell our five for more than they paid! Great little upgrade for the Falcon 20 we were still flying. Amazingly, almost exactly the same fuel between west coast and KMEM as the Falcon (don't ask how I know that!)! Fortunately for our Mx, we did NOT have the stairs; remove them and their weight and add that much payload! First brand new aircraft I ever flew. Nice! Simple! Reliable!
Timothy Foley
Ahhhhhh yes, I got my first ride in an airplane in this or an identical Air Cal plane. I also remember so well back in the day a number of years later, at KSNA back around 1981, sitting at the ramp for 3 hours not allowed to deplane as we waited for a mechanic to DRIVE from Ontario Airport to Orange County to fix a cockpit window that would not close so we could fly to San Jose, CA. Air Cal was a nightmare and treated us so poorly. I think I got one of those little 1/2 cans of Coke for free while sequestered the entire time. Even got interviewed by the news media a week later.
Bob Plested
Can't say for the Max, but the 700s, 800s, and 900s retained the stairs as an option. You can see a closeout plate below the forward door whether or not the stairs are installed.
James Thompson
Loved the old days of the 1970's at LAX. Get to the airport, Terminal 1 and walk up to buy a ticket to SFO. Oh, sold out? Walk a short distance, still in T-1 to PSA and buy their ticket. It truly was like taking a bus as far as getting flights to/from LAX to SFO.
Tom VancePhoto Uploader
Thanks for all of the comments and comps....if you look at the second photo on the tab where it shows 2 of N462GB, click on that, and you can see I do not do a very good job of editing! Im using a small wolverine slide converter an I need practice. LOL..
Lauri Lipponen - no glass..... SJC was a open air observation deck. Film type guess may be correct. TYVM!
Great airline! Miss them.
Dan Glover
Very cool. I flew this exact aircraft N462GB and many others like it back in the day as Captain with Air California (Air Cal).
So nice to see it again.
Tom VancePhoto Uploader
Dan Glover: very cool, my 1st jet flight was on Air California 737 N459AC Apr 1970 SJC-SNA and back a week later, you coulda been my Pilot. Actually the whole family went on our 1st trip to Disneyland-Anaheim. My oldest brother worked at Air California SJC for 1.5 years before he went into the Army He was in Terminal C/SJC during 69-71. Tix Agent.
Thanks for this pic. As a student at SJSU in 1974-76, I used to buy a student standby ticket on AirCal for $9 one way. They were great!
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