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Old Timer's Airline Quiz and Discussion

Old Timer's Airline Quiz and Discussion

Old Dec 8, 19, 2:23 pm
  #16966  
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My head hurts from thinking of all the possibilities and probabilities.

Let's try (for route taken)

7C SK CPH-JFK
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Old Dec 9, 19, 10:29 am
  #16967  
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Originally Posted by YVR Cockroach View Post
My head hurts from thinking of all the possibilities and probabilities.

Let's try (for route taken)

7C SK CPH-JFK
7C- SK incorrect, JFK incorrect ...
this guess would have actually been for the original candidate routing, as we know that involved a 747 from Europe to JFK

so herewith some additional hints:
** FOR THE ORIGINAL CANDIDATE ROUTING **
7A, 7B -- the airline was from eastern Europe

** FOR THE AS-FLOWN ROUTING **
7A, 7B -- the two aircraft types are derivatives of the same basic model
7B, 7C -- the connecting point between these two legs was not JFK
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Old Dec 10, 19, 4:37 am
  #16968  
 
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Hello again all after what seems an extended interval.

Currently sat in a train in Ireland going from Cork to Dublin, repositioning between consecutive meetings. When did I last post ? Since then, back to Frankfurt again, and a previous Ireland trip, seems to be one a week at the moment. Dublin meeting this afternoon, back to London City this evening.

Have to say the inside of the train, standard class, is very pleasant and puts what you get nowadays in the UK to shame where the seats are so tightly pitched that you can't readily open a laptop, Ryanair style. Our locomotive built in London, Ontario. Now I've been to Cork airport a fair few times, and come here driving as well, but the last time I took the train on this line out of Cork was … 1966. Goodness me, so long ago. It was on that family holiday trip around Ireland (by car, but I did a day return train trip from Killarney to Cork on my own for something different) that we also passed by Shannon Airport, at my suggestion no doubt, and there, laying in the weeds by the approach road, was an old Lockheed L-749 Constellation. I did work out in more recent times which one it was.

There's a huge (for a railway) climb out of Cork station, immediately off the end of the platform by the waterfront into the longest railway tunnel in Ireland, and up through the outer suburbs onto the high plateau lands behind the city. We came up here yesterday by taxi to visit a civil engineering project, the driver said that while snow was very uncommon in Cork you certainly get it up here in winter. Today it's a cool, damp, grey, wet, December day, visibility maybe half a mile. Scrubby, waterlogged fields and leafless trees and bushes. The actual railway tracks are modern and high quality, but all the incidental railway buildings and sheds along the line look like they have never been touched since Victorian times.

Irish railway tracks are a different gauge to elsewhere, at 5ft 3in they are wider than the worldwide standard. Doesn't really matter as they aren't connected to anything else. Apparently at an early time a government official asked for suggestions about the standard, and everything from a narrow 3ft 6in to an extreme 7ft was suggested, all in use in different places at the time. The government just took the midpoint … I know this is meant to be an aviation history thread, but hope a bit of train history doesn't go amiss.

Arriving at Cork late on Sunday evening on an Aer Lingus A320 from London Heathrow was something of a challenge, right in the teeth of a major storm. The previous flight had been cancelled, and several inbound Ryanair 737s diverted to Dublin. Our flight was 100% full with those knocked back by the previous cancellation of course, plus an (unusual for Europe) concerned -looking line of standbys at the back of the gate, who finally it seems all got accommodated.. Anyway, off we went, and the turbulence on the descent was not too bad, despite which there were a string of classically Irish expressions coming from behind - "oooh bejaysus" and similar. In fact the buffeting against the tailplane when parked at right-angles to the wind at the gate was more noticeable. Cork used to have a very pleasant, homestyle, terminal, it even had a coal fire in the departure lounge, and always seemed quite adequate for the number of passengers, but was replaced about 15 years ago by a soulless, modernist larger structure with no character at all. Shame. There's a big Christmas decoration setup out in the main arrival area, although when it comes to class decorations I have to say what had been done back at Heathrow Terminal 2 in the departure lounge, all in white lights and crystal, was a real artwork spectacle, probably the best I've seen. I wish I'd got photographs. It must have cost a fortune.

I've gone on for so long there's no time to look at the quiz questions. Best regards from a still grey, still wet, Limerick Junction. Everyone getting in looks soaked, and out on the platform that lady's umbrella has just been blown inside-out. The notable thing about the passing Irish farmscape in winter is the otherwise ubiquitous cows have been taken inside. Apart from a few we just passed, still outside, huddled up against the windward side hedge trying to take shelter. If you can imagine fed-up looking cows, that was them.
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Last edited by WHBM; Dec 10, 19 at 4:49 am
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Old Dec 10, 19, 2:39 pm
  #16969  
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Originally Posted by WHBM View Post
Hello again all after what seems an extended interval. ...
Irish railway tracks are a different gauge to elsewhere, at 5ft 3in they are wider than the worldwide standard. Doesn't really matter as they aren't connected to anything else. Apparently at an early time a government official asked for suggestions about the standard, and everything from a narrow 3ft 6in to an extreme 7ft was suggested, all in use in different places at the time. The government just took the midpoint … I know this is meant to be an aviation history thread, but hope a bit of train history doesn't go amiss. ...
hello to you as well, and thank you for a very engaging (as usual) travelogue

the analyst in me is curious, though ... when the railway standards were adopted, was the use of English units of measurement (rather than metric) that common?
Originally Posted by WHBM View Post
I've gone on for so long there's no time to look at the quiz questions. ...
I've added a few more bits of information to the latest status update above
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Old Dec 10, 19, 4:04 pm
  #16970  
 
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Originally Posted by jrl767 View Post
the analyst in me is curious, though ... when the railway standards were adopted, was the use of English units of measurement (rather than metric) that common?
The first lines were built to serve collieries in NE England (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stockt...ington_Railway) and had a gauge of 4ft 8.5in. This was said to have been the distance between the wheels of Roman chariots, which had left grooves in the Roman roads and probably determined the spacing for subsequent users. That gauge was spread around the world by British railway builders, though Brunel was a firm believer in the 7 foot gauge which made derailments less likely. Fortunately the narrow gauges used by many mine railways were limited to where they were needed. There are, of course, other gauges and that made for interesting international connections.
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Old Dec 10, 19, 5:50 pm
  #16971  
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Originally Posted by MADPhil View Post
... 4ft 8.5in. ... was said to have been the distance between the wheels of Roman chariots, which had left grooves in the Roman roads and probably determined the spacing for subsequent users. That gauge was spread around the world by British railway builders ... narrow gauges used by many mine railways were limited to where they were needed. There are, of course, other gauges and that made for interesting international connections.
thx Phil ... I was aware of the history wrt Roman chariot wheel spacing, and the difficulty (or, more accurately, impossibility) of interlining equipment across different operators with different gauges; I guess the expanse of the British Empire was a major factor in the proliferation of their standards, but Iím curious as to whether other (e.g., European) railways use English or metric measurement
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Old Dec 10, 19, 8:23 pm
  #16972  
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Originally Posted by MADPhil View Post
There are, of course, other gauges and that made for interesting international connections.
In the early 19th century, each of the colonies of Australia adopted their own gauges. As you might imagine, this made a transcontinental rail journey considerably more trying, especially for freight as each car had to be unloaded and reloaded onto a car from the new gauge. It wasn't until about 1970 that standardized rail was achieved - except for Queensland.

Three years ago when I rolled out of Mongolia into China, at the border our cars were lifted and fitted with new bogies suitable to the Chinese gauge.

On a side note, I won my quarterfinal match in the FlyerTalk Fantasy Football League by just 0.61 points. Had, say, a running back from my opponent's team run for just 18.6 more feet, I would have lost. Right. On to the semi-finals.

https://football.fantasysports.yahoo.com/f1/11076

Last edited by Seat 2A; Dec 11, 19 at 9:01 am
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Old Dec 10, 19, 11:33 pm
  #16973  
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Originally Posted by Seat 2A View Post
In the early 19th century, each of the colonies of Australia adopted their own gauges. As you might imagine, this made a transcontinental rail journey considerably more trying, especially for freight as each car had to be unloaded and reloaded onto a car from the new gauge
Similarly, the difference in gauge between Russia and the rest of Europe probably hindered the German invasion of the Soviet Union just sufficiently to tip the balance against the axis.
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Old Dec 11, 19, 4:15 am
  #16974  
 
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[Off topic] Sorry not directly related, but I was hoping to tap in to the incredible wisdom of this thread as it seems to extend far beyond what I can find elsewhere on the internet.

I am trying to reconstruct my flight history back when I was a child and there is one particularly tricky route. Back in December 2004 I flew London (LHR I think) - CMB - SYD return. I'm looking for both the airline and aircraft type. My dad thinks this was a short lived charter company that tried to meet excess demand on the UK-Australia route over the holiday period and suggested the airline was named "Euro-something" although my mother suggested "United-something". So far my searching hasn't turned up any record of either. Any help greatly appreciated.
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Old Dec 11, 19, 9:19 am
  #16975  
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Originally Posted by RonaldRoss View Post
[Off topic] Sorry not directly related, but I was hoping to tap in to the incredible wisdom of this thread as it seems to extend far beyond what I can find elsewhere on the internet.

I am trying to reconstruct my flight history back when I was a child and there is one particularly tricky route. Back in December 2004 I flew London (LHR I think) - CMB - SYD return. I'm looking for both the airline and aircraft type. My dad thinks this was a short lived charter company that tried to meet excess demand on the UK-Australia route over the holiday period and suggested the airline was named "Euro-something" although my mother suggested "United-something". So far my searching hasn't turned up any record of either. Any help greatly appreciated.
Anything else you can remember? For example, aircraft type would be huge. Was it a widebody? Was it a 747? Was it an all one-class aircraft? Did the flight route through CMB going and coming? Color of the livery?

You'd be surprised what you can remember sometimes. I remember meals I had on flights back in the early 1970s. I can even remember some n-numbers. And I definitely remember the colors of all the old Braniff aircraft I flew upon.
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Old Dec 11, 19, 9:27 am
  #16976  
 
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Originally Posted by Seat 2A View Post
Anything else you can remember? For example, aircraft type would be huge. Was it a widebody? Was it a 747? Was it an all one-class aircraft? Did the flight route through CMB going and coming? Color of the livery?

You'd be surprised what you can remember sometimes. I remember meals I had on flights back in the early 1970s. I can even remember some n-numbers. And I definitely remember the colors of all the old Braniff aircraft I flew upon.
Hmm, let's see. Definitely going through CMB each way and each way was just a refuelling stop. If I had to guess I would say it was a 747. It was very much a no-frills operation (was in Y not sure if they had J) and I remember it as being one of the worst UK-Australia trips and feeling completely wiped out both ways. Sorry can't remember much more than this.
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Old Dec 11, 19, 10:35 am
  #16977  
 
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Originally Posted by RonaldRoss View Post
I am trying to reconstruct my flight history back when I was a child and there is one particularly tricky route. Back in December 2004 I flew London (LHR I think) - CMB - SYD return. I'm looking for both the airline and aircraft type. My dad thinks this was a short lived charter company that tried to meet excess demand on the UK-Australia route over the holiday period and suggested the airline was named "Euro-something" although my mother suggested "United-something". So far my searching hasn't turned up any record of either. Any help greatly appreciated.
That wouldn't be a common charter operation, which doesn't suit that sort of route as the need for multiple crews along the route, and balancing return loads doesn't work well for a low cost operation. Plus ad-hoc charters are not normally permitted at London Heathrow. Charters have also long been restricted very much by the air service agreement between the UK/EU and Australia.

However, you were there and you rode it ! And having said that, at that exact time, for a couple of years, a charter operator called European Aviation had bought up several of the old British Airways Boeing 747-200B fleet which had been retired, and operated them over 2002-5 all around, economy only, charters from Asian countries to Mecca etc. Although based in Bournemouth their 747s, if operating work from the UK, generally ran from Gatwick. Going through Colombo is a good halfway point for aircraft with medium-long range capability to do a one-stop hop from London to Sydney. Going through the Gulf has cheaper fuel but the long hop on from say Dubai to Sydney was really beyond aircraft of the time which cheaper operators had.

The photos are not a great help because each aircraft seems to have had a different livery, sometimes more than one in their short service. But the colours might ding a bell. Although based in the UK Paul Stoddart, millionaire owner of the airline (and a Formula 1 racing team) was Australian https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_Stoddart and had a failed attempt to set up an associated Australian airline called OzJet at the same time.

https://www.jetphotos.com/photo/9061658
https://www.jetphotos.com/photo/9219157

The only "regular" charter operator of the era that went to Australia was Britannia Airways, with Boeing 767s, who ran winter (in UK) off-season flights there, maybe once a week. They commonly ran from Gatwick as well.
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Last edited by WHBM; Dec 11, 19 at 10:46 am
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Old Dec 11, 19, 11:37 am
  #16978  
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Originally Posted by WHBM View Post
The only "regular" charter operator of the era that went to Australia was Britannia Airways, with Boeing 767s, who ran winter (in UK) off-season flights there, maybe once a week. They commonly ran from Gatwick as well.
Would this be in the 8-abreast 763s?
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Old Dec 11, 19, 1:18 pm
  #16979  
 
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Originally Posted by WHBM View Post
That wouldn't be a common charter operation, which doesn't suit that sort of route as the need for multiple crews along the route, and balancing return loads doesn't work well for a low cost operation. Plus ad-hoc charters are not normally permitted at London Heathrow. Charters have also long been restricted very much by the air service agreement between the UK/EU and Australia.

However, you were there and you rode it ! And having said that, at that exact time, for a couple of years, a charter operator called European Aviation had bought up several of the old British Airways Boeing 747-200B fleet which had been retired, and operated them over 2002-5 all around, economy only, charters from Asian countries to Mecca etc. Although based in Bournemouth their 747s, if operating work from the UK, generally ran from Gatwick. Going through Colombo is a good halfway point for aircraft with medium-long range capability to do a one-stop hop from London to Sydney. Going through the Gulf has cheaper fuel but the long hop on from say Dubai to Sydney was really beyond aircraft of the time which cheaper operators had.

The photos are not a great help because each aircraft seems to have had a different livery, sometimes more than one in their short service. But the colours might ding a bell. Although based in the UK Paul Stoddart, millionaire owner of the airline (and a Formula 1 racing team) was Australian https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_Stoddart and had a failed attempt to set up an associated Australian airline called OzJet at the same time.

https://www.jetphotos.com/photo/9061658
https://www.jetphotos.com/photo/9219157

The only "regular" charter operator of the era that went to Australia was Britannia Airways, with Boeing 767s, who ran winter (in UK) off-season flights there, maybe once a week. They commonly ran from Gatwick as well.
Yes! Thats it for sure (first photo). Just seeing it reminds me of the despair of a young teenager getting back on the plane at CMB with only a 13 track Sony CD player for entertainment. At the time my dad had a conference on in Sydney and decided to bring along the whole family after seeing a heavily discounted fare in the window of a travel agent. He flew out a week in advance on QF (in J) and my mother had to drag long three grumpy teenagers on what was a memorably horrendous trip - she never let it go and still mentions it. Looks like we were pretty lucky that the flight even operated given the airlines imminent demise. I guess it must have been LGW after all. Thanks so much for this, it's been bugging me for a while -unparalleled expertise in this thread.
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Old Dec 11, 19, 4:53 pm
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Originally Posted by RonaldRoss View Post
Yes! Thats it for sure (first photo).
OK, we may have the aircraft/airline, but that's not quite the end of it. Charters from the UK to Australia were very unusual at that time, despite the operators' Anglo-Oz connections. Plus you are sure it was through Colombo, and initially thought it was from London Heathrow. And those "deals" in agency windows (or in the small ads in the Sunday Times) tended to be on secondary scheduled carriers.

In July 2001 the majority of the Sri Lankan Airlines long-haul fleet, Airbus A330 and A340, was destroyed on the ground at Colombo in an attack by Tamil fighters https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bandar...Airport_attack . They weren't replaced particularly quickly because, as well as aircraft ordering lead time, they couldn't get hull insurance on aircraft based there. Now being a substitute operator to a scheduled carrier is just the sort of work that European would be picking up for those big, costly to operate (though not so much to buy; they were late 1970s well-worn aircraft). The big annual pilgrimage to Mecca from Asia and Africa that absorbs so much of these high capacity old fleets only lasts for a couple of months per year. So it's possible that it was Sri Lankan Airlines scheduled flights, London Heathrow to Colombo and Colombo to Sydney, mainstream routes for them that a necessarily chartered-in 747 running twice a week would fit into, hired with four or five sets of crews that, on a longer term contract, handle all the crew change issues.

Incidentally, I remember those European aircraft when they were brand new and I was a regular around 1979-80 on British Airways to Los Angeles, which was the first route the higher-performance 747-200B were deployed on.

Last edited by WHBM; Dec 11, 19 at 5:04 pm
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