In the saga of mergers that have characterized the US airline industry over the decades, plenty of airlines have disappeared – subsumed into a larger merger partner. One such airline is American West. I was looking for some old shots for another project and came across a bunch of shots of this airline. It merged with USAir and then ultimately into American Airlines. It had a more interesting color scheme than is usually the case these days so I figured I would pop a few shots of their jets into a post.
I believe one of these jets is a retro scheme as part of the American Airlines retro jet program. The rest, though, are from the days when the airline was an active competitor. A search on the registrations of some of these jets would have, until recently shown them as still active in the American Airlines fleet. Now, with most of the fleets on the ground and given the age of some of these jets, I suspect a lot of them won’t be making it back in to service.
Yakutia is a Russian airline that has had a few problems recently and has been banned by the Russian authorities from some services until it can sort out its problems. Consequently, I am more pleased than I might otherwise be that I caught this Sukhoi Superjet at Narita in their colors as I might not get the chance again. We shall see if they get straightened out or whether some larger airline takes over their operations.
There are many airlines around the world so plenty that you probably haven’t heard of and may never see. Finding one in your backyard is a surprise though. There I was hovering over LAX in a Robinson shooting pictures of the arriving and departing jets and a 747-400 appears on the approach. Since they are becoming fewer and further between these days, this was a good thing. When I saw the name on it, I had no idea what it was.
Wamos is apparently a Spanish airline. They have been operating some flights to LA but, up until this point (and the subsequent research I did), I had never heard of them. I guess we just never crossed paths. A new airline and a 747 was a pretty sweet combination. I was definitely on a roll on this flight as I got a number of treats.
The step up in size that Embraer took when they create the E170/175 and E190/195 aircraft was important for them and it proved to be a successful move. Both types did well and have achieved a solid market presence. With a new generation of technologies coming, Embraer decided to go for a significant upgrade to the type with new engines and other systems resulting in the E2 versions. In line with that, they decided to tweak the current design to create the E1 upgrades. This turned out to be a well-timed upgrade as it came at a time when a whole bunch of airlines were looking to up-gauge their regional feeder services. Embraer picked up a ton of orders.
The speed with which these jets have entered the US fleets is impressive. Both United and American signed new deals for service with these jets and now you can regularly see their E175s feeding in to large airports. Alaska has gone a similar way (using Skywest much as United has) and their fleet of E175s is starting to grow. The E2 has now had its first flight in the larger E190 form but the 175 will follow in a few years. The E170 has been dropped from the line at this point. I imagine we will see even more of these jets as they will dominate this seating range which Bombardier seems to have ceded as they focus on larger jets.
Parked up on the ramp at Erickson’s facility was a DC-7 tanker. It didn’t move while we were there so it became the target of a number of photographers at any one time. I shall show more of it shortly but one thing that caught my attention was the amount of oil on the engine nacelles. Old piston engines are well known for consuming oil at a prodigious rate and this beast was no exception. It seemed to have done a great job of relocating the oil from the internals of the engines to the outside of the nacelles. It made for some great patterns and this was what distracted me for a while as I walked around the aircraft.