I shot this Singapore A350 landing at Haneda in January of 2020. When I was reviewing the shots, I saw something odd on the roof. At first I thought it was markings for rescue areas but it really didn’t look that good. I am wondering whether the original paint job was pretty shoddy and the paint is peeling off. It doesn’t look good to me.
I was photographing some evening arrivals at Vancouver and, as I went through the shots afterwards, I got to see some detail on the tires that I had not noticed before. The tires’ surface has a matt finish as you would expect of rubber. When they hit the runway they go from zero rotation to very fast rotation extremely quickly. The friction that causes this rapid run up scrubs a bit from the surface of the tire making the familiar smoke.
What I didn’t know is that the heat changes the appearance of the surface of the tires. They suddenly become very shiny. In these shots you can see wheels of a 777 just before and just after contact. Also there is a shot from an A321 where you can see some of the tires have touched down and others haven’t. Only with the low sum angle was this obvious.
The F-22 Raptor has a complex coating system on the skin of the airframe that is part of the overall approach to stealth. Normally, they look pretty well finished in order to preserve the performance of the system (although I have spotted a few jets with the green primer showing through worn finishes). However, one or two of the jets that were at Red Flag had what almost looked like a panel missing from the spine of the jet. Looking a bit closer, I think the panel had been replaced and the finishing of the surfaces around the work remained to be done. It did look a bit of a mess though. Checking some of the other jets, they also show this panel in a slightly different color. Perhaps they have all been undergoing a modification program in this area?