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Old Timer's Airline Quiz and Discussion.

Old Timer's Airline Quiz and Discussion.

Old Nov 21, 2013, 1:10 pm
  #3736  
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As always, much appreciated color commentary from our esteemed colleague WHBM. Thank you!

I did have a cup of coffee on the short KGL-EBB leg. It was good - not great. I expect I'll have to visit Turkey for a proper cup of Turkish Joe.

As for the Europe/Asia debate, I'd be leaning toward Europe considering how far west Istanbul sits. Leaning...

BTW, welcome to the OTA&AQ, TemboOne! We always enjoy a bit of reminiscing...
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Old Nov 21, 2013, 3:17 pm
  #3737  
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Originally Posted by WHBM
This is a triangular 737-900 operation, from Istanbul to Kigali, capital of Rwanda, then on to nearby Entebbe in Uganda, and back to Istanbul.
Thought it might be with regard to the IST-KIG-EBB-IST routing....and a rather elongated triangle at that.

And this also explains why Turkish Airlines offers service from EBB to KIG via a connection in Istanbul at a fare that is a bit higher (to say the least) than one would expect to pay.....

Last edited by jlemon; Nov 21, 2013 at 3:27 pm
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Old Nov 21, 2013, 4:35 pm
  #3738  
 
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I'll just add a welcome to TemboOne, and it's good to read of your past flights. Any more ? Anyone who is a friend of the Comet is a friend of ours here

I think I can say that there was never a scheduled Comet operation to Ireland, neither Dublin nor Shannon, so the BEA substitution must have been a novelty for them as well as yourself.

The Malaysian Airways Comet fleet were all secondhand from BOAC, who had a minority shareholding. They are actually Comet 4, not the longer fuselage Comet 4C. In the political complexity of the area at the time they were actually based at Singapore. 9V-BAS was the pioneer Comet 4, previously G-APDA in Britain.

All the RAF's Comets, of various types, were new to them, the classic secondhand user was British holiday airline Dan-Air. In the end, they got through more than 30 of them, not all at the same time, including the last RAF ones and both the ones you rode, and did the last ever Comet commercial flight at the end of 1980. Loaded up with British old airliner buffs (alas, I missed it), it made such a spectacular departure from Gatwick that they were at over 2,000 feet by the end of the runway.

The RAF anti-sub aircraft, including the one lost at the Toronto airshow, was a rather different derivative, the Nimrod. It had different engines, a modified fuselage, came from a different factory, and had many other changes. But it did have the same general arrangement of the Comet, with the four engines buried in the wings.

Disgracefully, in the last few weeks the historic Comet 2 that has spent the last 25 years outside the front gate of RAF Lyneham, has been broken up for scrap. Here are parts of it leaving by truck only last week.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-wiltshire-24940615

Last edited by WHBM; Nov 21, 2013 at 4:46 pm
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Old Nov 22, 2013, 1:06 pm
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Originally Posted by Seat 2A
the short KGL-EBB leg.
I just thought I'd try some on-topic questions on this area, from long ago.

1. In 1971, 42 there is a choice of two carriers for Kigali to Entebbe. One goes once a week on Saturday afternoons, by jet, through an intermediate stop, while the other goes twice a week, Monday on a turboprop and Thursday on a jet. What are the airlines and aircraft ?

2. Very early on a Thursday morning (just to take a sample day of the week) in 1971, there are three aircraft leave Entebbe for Europe in the space of an hour. Three separate airlines but all using the same aircraft type. What are the three airlines and what is this aircraft type ?
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Old Nov 22, 2013, 1:23 pm
  #3740  
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Looks like I'll have to take a look at some old timetables from several carriers across the pond(s) with regard to the above quiz items thoughtfully posted by WHBM......

Meantime, over on the AA AAdvantage forum, there's an interesting thread entitled "TWA 1981 Royal Ambassador Offerings" posted by zrs70. It's actually a TWA employee newsletter and well worth the read.....
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Old Nov 22, 2013, 1:54 pm
  #3741  
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Originally Posted by WHBM
... 2. Very early on a Thursday morning (just to take a sample day of the week) in 1971, there are three aircraft leave Entebbe for Europe in the space of an hour. Three separate airlines but all using the same aircraft type. What are the three airlines and what is this aircraft type ?
with absolutely no research resources at hand (save Google, which I have refrained from using except to check when another type of aircraft entered service), herewith is the wildest of wild guesses ... although considering the source of the question it's probably not TOO wild

Comet IVs operated by BOAC, East African Airways, and Olympic
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Old Nov 22, 2013, 3:02 pm
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Originally Posted by jrl22
Comet IVs operated by BOAC, East African Airways, and Olympic
A good try. However, the last BOAC Comet service was on 24 November 1965.
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Old Nov 22, 2013, 4:03 pm
  #3743  
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so are we looking for another Comet operator? Ethiopian seems geographically compatible but I think they had DC-8s ... maybe Middle East to Europe via Beirut?
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Old Nov 22, 2013, 4:49 pm
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Originally Posted by WHBM
2. Very early on a Thursday morning (just to take a sample day of the week) in 1971, there are three aircraft leave Entebbe for Europe in the space of an hour. Three separate airlines but all using the same aircraft type. What are the three airlines and what is this aircraft type ?
I'll try a different approach -- how about VC-10s for the equipment, with British Caledonian (BR), British Airways (BA) and East African (EC) as the operators.
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Old Nov 22, 2013, 4:52 pm
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East African's last Comet was just before the timetable I'm looking at, final Comet service 9 February 1971. However, they had been only used on regional services for some time previously.

* But while I'm typing that *

Miniliq is pretty much there. Yes, three VC-10s from three different airlines on the ramp together at Entebbe under the African starry night sky, then thundering off one after the other. I said 'Europe' rather than London because the East African one wasn't going there like the other two were. It was routing Nairobi-Entebbe-Zurich-New York. I can't think of any other carrier operating from Entebbe to the USA since East African closed down a few years later.

I said pretty much because two of those airlines actually had different names. The timetable is April 1971. One might be straightforward, the other somewhat less so - in fact, even the timetable's got it wrong !

Last edited by WHBM; Nov 22, 2013 at 5:09 pm
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Old Nov 22, 2013, 7:19 pm
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I had thought about VC-10s, but couldn't associate them with enough airlines to make it work ... as I said, I'm going on fading brain power here: no back issues of OAGs, no old timetables to peruse, no google searches ...
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Old Nov 23, 2013, 6:28 am
  #3747  
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Originally Posted by WHBM
1. In 1971, there is a choice of two carriers for Kigali to Entebbe. One goes once a week on Saturday afternoons, by jet, through an intermediate stop, while the other goes twice a week, Monday on a turboprop and Thursday on a jet. What are the airlines and aircraft?
It seems like the obvious choice would be East African Airways for one of these flights, likely the twice weekly, so I'll go with them using an F-27 for the prop and a Comet for the jet.

As for the once weekly flight by jet, Belgium was involved in Rwanda until its independence in the 60s so I'm going to guess Sabena, flying a 707. An intermediate stop though? Kampala's too close, so let's go with Bujumbura.
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Old Nov 23, 2013, 7:25 am
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Originally Posted by Seat 2A
East African Airways ..... F-27 for the prop and a Comet for the jet.

....... Sabena, flying a 707. An intermediate stop though? Kampala's too close, so let's go with Bujumbura.
You're pretty much there, S2A. Rwanda and Burundi are old Belgian colonies, and the Sabena 707s were providing pretty much the only connection, hopping through various points to build up a load. Like many of the Europe-Africa routes, then and now, cargo was as important as passenger. The intermediate stop for the Kigali-Entebbe sector, which had originated in Brussels, was actually Nairobi, which is rather a dog-leg routing.

As for East African, the Comets had gone a few months beforehand. East African, under new ownership, had bought a most unusual type to replace them, namely the DC9. I don't think any other airline in Africa bought a DC9 new.

East African was one of the multi-national African airlines sponsored by BOAC after WW2, along with Central African and West African Airways. Unfortunately in the mid-1970s it fell apart with political infighting among the three national owners, pretty much what happened to the others as well. Not only owned by three different governments, but with upper management and pilots from Britain and South Africa, and the technical and operational staff mainly from the Indian expat community in East Africa, it was a mix of cultures too far. But they did buy the last VC-10s made, which after the bankruptcy were bought back to the UK by the RAF, converted to tankers, and were the actual aircraft still in use when the last VC-10 was withdrawn earlier this year.

An interesting story about the recovery of these, the RAF crew went out to bring the VC-10s back, which had been standing at Nairobi unprepared and unused for some time. They took engineers and a whole sheaf of engineering forms for all the anticipated snags. They positioned the first aircraft back to Britain, the engineering officer in charge back at base asked for all the snag forms, having a full maintenance crew standing by, and was told there was NOT ONE SINGLE fault on the aircraft ! Oh, the VC-10.

Last edited by WHBM; Nov 23, 2013 at 7:55 am
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Old Nov 23, 2013, 7:57 am
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Originally Posted by jrl22
I'm going on fading brain power here: no back issues of OAGs, no old timetables to peruse, no google searches ...
Very good, that's really the right way to do it, like when I'm holed up in a hotel room somewhere away on business and look here. One day we'll all get together in a bar somewhere and work through a nice set of questions - and then there will be no cheating !
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Old Nov 23, 2013, 11:11 am
  #3750  
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Originally Posted by WHBM
Very good, that's really the right way to do it, like when I'm holed up in a hotel room somewhere away on business and look here. One day we'll all get together in a bar somewhere and work through a nice set of questions - and then there will be no cheating !
This sounds like an excellent idea.....and I vote for the pub of your choice, WHBM, somewhere in London! @:-)

Of course, we will also have to check out several classic British jetliners while we are in the area.......
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