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20th of June, 1983

The De Havilland Canada DHC-8 "Dash 8" made its first flight on this day in aviation history 38 years ago. After the success of the "Dash 7" De Havilland Canada dropped the STOL requirement, repalcing the 4 PT6 engines with two Pratt & Withney PW120 (which where originally designated as PT7A-2r) more then doubling the engine power. And on the 19th of April 1983, after more then 3800 hours of testing of the PW100 series engines (two years testing with 5 PW100 series engines), the Dash 8 had its official roll out.

De Havilland Canada DHC-8-102 at 1984 Farnborough Airshow (cn 4)


The Dash 8 would be produced in 4 variants, with many subvarients based on different engines, para(military) use or commercial use. They were the:

  • Series 100, with 10 subvarients powered by PW120 or PW121 engines and commercial seating of 37-39 passengers

  • Series 200, a Series 100 airframe with 3 subvariants powered by PW 123 engines

  • Series 300, a 11. 3ft (3.43 m) stretched airframe compared to the previous series. with 9 subvariants. It has a capacity of 50 - 56 passengers and is powered by PW123 engines. After a 50% service life extension was granted the Series 300 now has a service life of 120.000 flight cycles.

  • Series 400, with an additional stretch of more then six meters the Series 400 has a capacity of 68 - 90 passengers and is powered by teh PW150A engine. The Series 400 was offered in 9 different versions, from passenger aircraft to waterbombing firefighter.

All Dash 8 aircraft delivered after mid 1996 were fitted with a Active Noise and Vibration System to reduce canin noise and vibration levels. All models were renamed by addin a 'Q" to the aircarft name, they became the Q200, Q300 and Q400. As of may 2009 only the Series 400 aircraft are manufatured. In 2019 the Dash 8 program was bought Longview Aviation Capital, a Candian aerospace company. Reviving the De Havilland Canada brand. Previous owners of the program were;

  • De Havviland Canada

  • Boeing (purchased in 1988)

  • Bombardier (purchase in 1992)

Some specifications of the Dash 8 102 (1986)variant.


Exterior Exterior Height: 24 ft 7 in

Wing Span: 84 ft 11 in

Length: 73 ft

Wing Area:: 585 square feet


Interior Cabin Width: 8 ft 3 In

Cabin Length: 29 ft 10 In


Occupancy Crew: 2

Passengers: 37


Operating Weights Max T/O Weight: 34500 Lb

Max Landing Weight: 34500 Lb

Operating Weight: 23111 Lb

Fuel Capacity: 848 gal Lb

Payload W/Full Fuel: 7511 Lb


Range Normal Range: 1174 nm

Service Ceiling: 25000 ft


Performance Normal Cruise: 268 kts


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