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McDonnell Douglas DC-10

Air Freight & Cargo Charter Services on the McDonnell Douglas DC-10

Air Charter Advisors offers passenger, freight, and cargo air charter services on the McDonnell Douglas DC-10, a wide-body, tri-jet airliner manufactured by McDonnell Douglas.

DC-10 cargo charter services
Source: Flickr

The DC-10 was first introduced into commercial service by American Airlines in 1971 as a larger version of the DC- 8 with a higher payload capacity and additional range. Several variations were adapted over its run, and the aircraft made its final commercial flight in 2014. Today, more than 30 cargo airlines operate them as freighters, with several of those available for on-demand air cargo & air freight charters.

For air freight & cargo services, these wide-body cargo airliners offer a maximum payload of just over 100,000 lbs (50.8 tons), with variants offering extended range of up to 5,200 nautical miles, making them ideal for medium to long haul missions.


The original DC-10-10 offered a range of 3,500 nmi (6,500 km), suiting it for transcontinental flights. The -15 was equipped with upgraded engines for improved operations at hot & high airports. The -30/40 models allowed for higher maximum weights thanks to a third main landing gear leg, and offered a range of up to 5,200 nmi (9,600 km) for intercontinental flights. The U.S. Air Force operates a tanker based on the -30 known as the KC-10 Extender.

After 386 models and 60 KC-10 tanker aircraft were delivered, production ended in 1989. Despite the aircraft’s early cargo door issues, it was considered a successful run, outselling the competing Lockheed L-1011 TriStar. It was eventually replaced by larger, heavier MD-11. Boeing acquired McDonnell Douglas in 1997, which resulted in several DC-10s still in service receiving an upgrade to the MD-10, which introduced an all-glass cockpit like many airliners of that era to eliminate flight engineer position.

Key Features

  • Payload capacity of 50 tons
  • Extended range models fly up to 5,200 nmi
  • Multiple large cargo doors for easy loading & unloading

McDonnell Douglas DC-10-30 Specifications

  • Year of Make: 1971 – 1989
  • Manufacturer: McDonnell Douglas
  • Class: Medium Cargo Airliner
  • MTOW: 555,000 lb (251,744 kg)
  • Max Payload: 101,809 lb (46,180 kg; 50.8 tons)


  • Top Speed: Mach 0.88 (507 kn; 940 km/h) MMo
  • Cruise Speed: Mach 0.82 (473 kn; 876 km/h)
  • Range: 5,200 nmi (9,600 km)
  • Service Ceiling: 42,000 ft (12,800 m)
  • Runway: 10,500 ft / 3,200 m (takeoff, MTOW, SL, ISA)
  • Engines: 3x GE CF6-50C
  • Thrust: 51,000 lbf / 226.85 kN each


  • Cargo Volume: 17,092 ft³ (484 m³)
  • Cargo Area: 26 LD3 layout
  • Main Deck: 22 88″×125″ or 30 88″×108″ pallets
  • Height: 57 ft 7 in (17.55 m)
  • Length: 181 ft 7.2 in (55.35 m)
  • Wingspan: 165 ft 4 in (50.39 m)

Cargo Door Sizes (W x H)

  • Main Door: 140″ x 101″ (356 x 259 cm)
  • Forward Deck Door: 66″ x 104″ (168 x 264 cm)
  • Aft Deck Door: 66″ x 70″ (168 x 178 cm)
  • Bulk Cargo Door: 30″ x 48″ (76 x 122 cm)

McDonnell Douglas DC-10 Air Cargo Charter Services

Air Charter Advisors offers access to cargo air charter services on the McDonnell Douglas DC-10 cargo airliner. Request a quote or call our air cargo brokers directly at +1 (888) 987-5387.

* Specifications are based on common models and may vary based on model, variant, modifications, and other factors. Please call or email us with the dimensions and payload of your cargo. Pictures are for example only. The age, color, interior layout, hourly rates, specifications, dimensions may all vary between aircraft. All images copyrighted and provided courtesy of McDonnell Douglas unless noted otherwise.