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Old Timer's Airline Quiz and Discussion.

Old Timer's Airline Quiz and Discussion.

Old May 27, 2024, 2:30 pm
  #29191  
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Originally Posted by WHBM
I regret to advise that the RAF Battle of Britain Memorial Flight, their airworthy set of WW2 historic aircraft, has had a fatal accident earlier today at one of the D-Day airshows, at its base in Lincolnshire, eastern England, when one of its small group of Spitfires, each well known to the fraternity, was lost. We think it is the first fatality that The Flight has sustained. Pilot was the Commanding Officer-in waiting of the Memorial Flight, due to take over at the end of this year, who has been flying their display Spitfires for some four years now.

Pilot dies after Spitfire crash in Lincolnshire field - BBC News
This is very sad news indeed and our thoughts & prayers are with his family, friends and colleagues.....

I only had to directly deal with two accidents during my 35 year career in aviation and they both involved helicopters, one of which was destroyed in a crash in the Sierra Nevada mountains while conducting firefighting operations in a wilderness area south of Yosemite National Park. Very thankfully, the pilot (who was the only person on board) only sustained minor injuries.
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Old May 27, 2024, 8:48 pm
  #29192  
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100 years ago today

from the Looking Back feature in this months Aerospace America (the monthly magazine of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics):

May 27, 1924 the Aeromarine flying boat Morro Castle II arrived back in New York, completing the return leg of the first round-trip commercial flight between the continental U.S. and Puerto Rico
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Old Jun 1, 2024, 12:50 pm
  #29193  
 
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Article in the UK about Singapore airport used this surprising photo to illustrate its past times.

Aircraft and operator ? And what became of the operator ?

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Last edited by WHBM; Jun 1, 2024 at 12:56 pm
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Old Jun 2, 2024, 9:29 am
  #29194  
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Originally Posted by WHBM
Article in the UK about Singapore airport used this surprising photo to illustrate its past times.

Aircraft and operator ? And what became of the operator ?



Boeing 307 Stratoliner, Air Nautic (France, based in Nice) which went tango in 1966.

Aircraft Photo of F-BELY | Boeing 307B Stratoliner | Airnautic | AirHistory.net #106050
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Old Jun 2, 2024, 7:04 pm
  #29195  
 
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Originally Posted by Gardyloo

Boeing 307 Stratoliner, Air Nautic (France, based in Nice) which went tango in 1966.
Same aircraft, but different, later time. Airnautic were a French, 1960s, sundry charter operator. I can't see them really running it as far as Singapore. It was a surprisingly late purchase by them of a pre-war aircraft anyway.

The photo has the oversize registration that French regulations required in the early 1950s ("as large as practicable"), later withdrawn, and the operator then was French secondary airline Aigle Azur, who bought up what remained of the pre-war Boeing Stratoliner fleet. Some may notice the wings and tail from the WW2 B-17 bomber. This one was new in 1940 to TWA. Aigle Azur used them on notably long haul flights from Paris to French Indo China (Vietnam) and to French colonial Africa. Aigle later merged up with another French independent UAT, who had DC6s and didn't want the old Stratoliners, so they were sold to Airnautic. This one surprisingly, after Airnautic's short period with them, then got sold again back in Cambodia, while others went to Laos, where they were involved with some shadowy pseudo-airline operations, and all seemed to succumb to various incidents in the Vietnam campaign, into the 1970s, by when they were over 30 years old.

Here's their 1954 timetable. They also had a DC6 which went out east once a week, and likewise the old Boeing. Notably fares are shown for the DC6 for F and Y - and the fare through to Vietnam on the Stratoliner was even cheaper than Y on the DC6 ! I guess the photo of the aircraft at Singapore would be some extension of this service.



What happened to UAT ? They merged up again in the early 1960s with a third French independent, TAI, to form our old friend UTA, running indeed along the same routes. There seemed to be some interlocking ownerships between them all. Was always said the whole UTA empire was engineered by the French government foreign ministry, often known as the "Quai d'Orsay" after the address of its building in Paris, and indeed one can imagine three descending grades of colonial servants being sent out in the two DC6 classes, with the most junior, and possibly their families, being reduced to the Stratoliner. Bet they didn't look forward to it as much as we would now !
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Old Jun 19, 2024, 11:02 pm
  #29196  
 
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getting to interesting train trips

Things are slow on the site, so I thought I would offer something new and perhaps interesting.
I've always been a keen railfan, interested especially in obscure rail lines crossing international borders. "Cook's Overseas Timetables" and "Cook's European Timetables" are a great source for finding these rail lines. Some will probably never be reinstated, i.e., U.S.-Mexico, Syria-Lebanon, Iran-Azerbaijan and Argentina-Bolivia. Some are being newly built, such as Turkey-Georgia and Thailand-Laos, and there is hope for others: Albania-Montenegro, Tunisia-Algeria-Morocco and Kenya-Uganda. In 2008 and 2009 I decided to ride on two of them, Kazakhstan-Urumqi (in Xinjiang, China) and Vietnam-Nanning (on the route to Beijing). But how to get there? Alongside many cruise ships there's only one real ocean liner left, the "Queen Mary 2," so it has to be by air.

In April, 2008, I wanted to ride the trains from Ho Chi Minh Ville to Hanoi, Hanoi to Nanning, from Delhi to New Jalpaiguri and on to Darjeeling (a narrow-gauge, part-rack, part steam-hauled train to Darjeeling) and then down to Calcutta. Delta has had a confused relationship with Singapore Airlines over the years, but in 2008 one could still book SQ in first class with Delta Skymiles, so I booked a first-class DL award JFK-San Francisco (DL 737-700) - Singapore via Hong Kong (SQ 747-400) - Ho Chi Min Ville (SQ 2-class 777-300 in business class) and Calcutta-Singapore (SQ 2-class in business class 777 probably - 300) and Singapore-LAX via Narita (SQ 747-400) and LAX-JFK (DL 737-700). I also wanted to visit Nepal for the first time, but getting from China to Nepal was expensive and required creative routing. After arriving in Nanning on the overnight train, I flew on a China Southern 737 (model?) to Chongqing, took the overnight boat on the Yangtze river to Yichang, an Air China 737-300 to Beijing, an Air China 737-300 to Shanghai-Pudong, a Dragonair A330-300 to Hong Kong, and a Dragonair A320-200 to Kathmandu.Then it was a JetAir 737-400 or -700 to Delhi, the trains to Darjeeling and Calcutta, SQ to Singapore, SQ via Narita to LAX and DL to JFK. The SQ service was outstanding, of course. Before departure the cabin attendants patrolled the first-class cabin with a bottle of Dom Perignon in one hand and Krug in the other, filling up glasses.

In September, 2009, it was off to Kazakhstan and Xinjiang, and I also wanted to ride the new line to Lhasa in Tibet and the line to Chiang Mai in Thailand. The Lhasa line reaches 16631' above sea level, the highest rail line in the world, having eclipsed the old record-holder Lima-Huancavelica in Peru (up to 15692'), which I have also ridden. The Chinese dissuade visitors to Xinjiang, so I didn't mention it as a tourism goal in my visa application and had no problems at all. I booked a first-class American Airlines award JFK-Narita (JL 747-400) - Seoul (2-class JL 767, probably -300 in business class) and Bangkok - Hong Kong (Cathay Pacific 2-class 777 probably -300 in business class) and Hong Kong - JFK (CX 777-300). I also bought an Air Astana Seoul-Almaty ticket (757-200) and China Southern Urumqi - Xian ticket (737-300) and train tickets Xian-Lhasa and Bangkok-Chiang Mai. When I arrived at the Urumqi airport, two hours before scheduled departure, I learned the plane was about to depart. It seems Air China scheduled all their flights on Beijing time (they must have learned this from Russian Railways on Moscow time), and Urumqi was 2 hours west of Beijing time. How to get from Lhasa to Bangkok without going bankrupt? For the first time ever I searched on various consolidators' websites and came up with a reasonable Kayak itinerary: Lhasa-Chengdu (Air China A330-200) - Hong Kong (Air China 757-200) - Bangkok (CX 777 probably -200). Then back to the AA award: to New York: CX Bangkok- Hong Kong and HKG -JFK.
It was fun!
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Old Jun 22, 2024, 4:18 pm
  #29197  
 
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40th anniversary of Virgin Atlantic's first flight

On this day in 1984, 22 June, VS began service from London Gatwick LGW to Newark EWR.

Back then, they only had one 747-200, G-VIRG, which was built in 1975 for Aerolineas Argentinas.
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Old Jun 22, 2024, 4:34 pm
  #29198  
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Did the same plane just fly back and forth to Newark until they got a second one, or did they try to work in other flying too?
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Old Jun 22, 2024, 5:06 pm
  #29199  
 
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Originally Posted by moondog
Did the same plane just fly back and forth to Newark until they got a second one, or did they try to work in other flying too?
I don't have any timetable info, so can't tell if flight was daily. I doubt there was spare capacity for additional flying in the early days.

Their second 747 arrived in Jan 1986. LGW to Miami was the second route.


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Old Jun 23, 2024, 7:12 am
  #29200  
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Originally Posted by KT550
On this day in 1984, 22 June, VS began service from London Gatwick LGW to Newark EWR.

Back then, they only had one 747-200, G-VIRG, which was built in 1975 for Aerolineas Argentinas.
The name of this aircraft was "Maiden Voyager". And here she is at London Gatwick back in the day just several weeks after Virgin Atlantic initiated scheduled service....

https://www.airliners.net/photo/Virg...287B/1108408/L

Note the pair of BCal BAC One-Eleven series 500 aircraft in the background among other airplanes.

BTW, I've never flown with Virgin Atlantic. However, I intend to rectify this situation in the not so distant future.
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Old Jun 23, 2024, 10:23 am
  #29201  
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Originally Posted by Track
Things are slow on the site, so I thought I would offer something new and perhaps interesting.
I've always been a keen railfan, interested especially in obscure rail lines crossing international borders. "Cook's Overseas Timetables" and "Cook's European Timetables" are a great source for finding these rail lines. Some will probably never be reinstated, i.e., U.S.-Mexico, Syria-Lebanon, Iran-Azerbaijan and Argentina-Bolivia. Some are being newly built, such as Turkey-Georgia and Thailand-Laos, and there is hope for others: Albania-Montenegro, Tunisia-Algeria-Morocco and Kenya-Uganda. In 2008 and 2009 I decided to ride on two of them, Kazakhstan-Urumqi (in Xinjiang, China) and Vietnam-Nanning (on the route to Beijing). But how to get there? Alongside many cruise ships there's only one real ocean liner left, the "Queen Mary 2," so it has to be by air.

In April, 2008, I wanted to ride the trains from Ho Chi Minh Ville to Hanoi, Hanoi to Nanning, from Delhi to New Jalpaiguri and on to Darjeeling (a narrow-gauge, part-rack, part steam-hauled train to Darjeeling) and then down to Calcutta. Delta has had a confused relationship with Singapore Airlines over the years, but in 2008 one could still book SQ in first class with Delta Skymiles, so I booked a first-class DL award JFK-San Francisco (DL 737-700) - Singapore via Hong Kong (SQ 747-400) - Ho Chi Min Ville (SQ 2-class 777-300 in business class) and Calcutta-Singapore (SQ 2-class in business class 777 probably - 300)

In September, 2009, it was off to Kazakhstan and Xinjiang, and I also wanted to ride the new line to Lhasa in Tibet and the line to Chiang Mai in Thailand. The Lhasa line reaches 16631' above sea level, the highest rail line in the world, having eclipsed the old record-holder Lima-Huancavelica in Peru (up to 15692'), which I have also ridden. The Chinese dissuade visitors to Xinjiang, so I didn't mention it as a tourism goal in my visa application and had no problems at all. I booked a first-class American Airlines award JFK-Narita (JL 747-400) - Seoul (2-class JL 767, probably -300 in business class) and Bangkok - Hong Kong (Cathay Pacific 2-class 777 probably -300 in business class) and Hong Kong - JFK (CX 777-300).
It was fun!
Looks like at least 3 777-300 flights (773 vs. 77W). Wonder if any of these (and the -200As) are still in service as they were very heavy for the range (medium haul at best) and were stop-gap 747 replacements for short-medium haul. Only 60 were built and the newest is almost 20 years old.
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Old Jun 23, 2024, 11:45 pm
  #29202  
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A friend of mine (who is a FTer but not quite nerdy enough for this thread) is currently on a cruise around China/Korea/Japan and aviation trivia seems to be a thing there. On Saturday, airline tails was the topic and he easily won that round.

But, he placed second in today's airport code round. I feel partly responsible for this because I helped him prepare, and both of us overlooked the fact that there might be a strong China emphasis (civilian Chinese airports are actually pretty easy because there aren't that many of them) and that full airport names were the standard (it seems that the judges were more anal about this in some cases than others). Anyway, I want to show you guys the list here. Have a go at it, if you like. I won't post the answers because google is far more efficient.

HHA is the only city (which he crossed out and wrote CSX after the fact, which is the old IACO code for the same airport) I couldn't figure out. I'm not really sure how my "full name" guesses would have been received, but I'm guessing I would have missed about 5 more.

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Old Jun 24, 2024, 7:59 am
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Originally Posted by moondog
Did the same plane just fly back and forth to Newark until they got a second one, or did they try to work in other flying too?
I got more info from a friend who worked for VS in the early days.

The Newark flight was about 4 times a week initially. They did a few charter flights on other days but nothing regular.

Miami started at twice a week when the 2nd 747 arrived.
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Old Jun 24, 2024, 8:53 am
  #29204  
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Originally Posted by KT550
I got more info from a friend who worked for VS in the early days.

The Newark flight was about 4 times a week initially. They did a few charter flights on other days but nothing regular.

Miami started at twice a week when the 2nd 747 arrived.
According to the OAG, by early 1989 Virgin Atlantic had increased their 747 service on the London Gatwick - New York Newark route to one daily roundtrip while the Gatwick - Miami 747 service had been increased to five times a week with flights operating except Tuesdays and Thursdays in both directions.

Competition on both the LGW - EWR and LGW - MIA routes was operated by Continental also with 747 equipment with CO flying one daily roundtrip between Newark and Gatwick as well as five times a week between Gatwick and Miami also except on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

And Virgin Atlantic was also operating one other service from LGW at this time according to the OAG but not with a 747. These flights were operated with a Vickers Viscount between Gatwick and Maastricht in Holland. The service was operated five days a week on the route. Here's a photo of a Virgin Atlantic Viscount on approach to Maastricht....

https://www.airliners.net/photo/Virg...ount/7455219/L
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Old Jun 24, 2024, 10:06 am
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Originally Posted by jlemon

And Virgin Atlantic was also operating one other service from LGW at this time according to the OAG but not with a 747. These flights were operated with a Vickers Viscount between Gatwick and Maastricht in Holland. The service was operated five days a week on the route.
I hadn't realised the Maastricht flight lasted so long.

I took that flight in August 1985. I must have booked soon after the route was launched and paid GBP 50 return. That was so cheap for a flight to Europe in those days; maybe it was a special offer when the route opened.

The Viscount was operated by British Air Ferries. Only one was painted in VS colours, if it was broken or on maintenance a standard BAF aircraft was used.
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