Tag Archives: civil

Q400 Full Disc On The Props

I took this a long time ago but just came across it again.  I was under the approach path for SeaTac and one of the many Q400s that come in and out every day was setting up on final approach.  Since it was nothing special, I figured a low shutter speed was in order.  With the light on the front of the plane, this should show up the prop disc nicely.  It worked out pretty well.

Shooting Slower Landing Shots

One evening, I was shooting at Boeing Field.  The light was lower in the sky but it was still pretty bright.  The thing with corporate jets is that they are often predominantly white and the brightness of the jet with a darker background can make for more contrast than a camera sensor can adequately deal with.  You can sort out things in post but it is often too bright.  I figured I wanted to try and reduce the glare on the jet and that the polarizer was a good way to do it.

This has a second outcome.  Taking out that might light allows the use of slower shutter speeds without having ridiculously small apertures – a sure fire way to find every bit of dust on the sensor.  Since I was shooting bizjets at Boeing Field, things weren’t terribly special so I was happy to play around with going down to lower shutter speeds.  A boring side on landing shot is a bit more interesting when the background is blurred and the sense of motion is enhanced.  I need to practice this a bit to use it more often since it makes for a more interesting shot which I want to be able to use on something a bit more special.  Definitely need to lower the shutter speed further.

Belavia

Another new airline for me with this post.  Belavia is not an airline I am familiar with but I understand that they are from Belarus.  One of their Max jets was on test while I was at Boeing Field and it came in late in the day.  I was glad to add another unusual carrier to my library of shots.  Nothing special about it otherwise but nice to get something new.

Under the Biz Jets

While the 777X was the reason for being out at the end of Boeing Field, it wasn’t the only plane to come in while I was there.  I also got a couple of bizjets arriving at that time.  They are an easier target to deal with than a wide body airliner but they still show up quickly when they come in to view.  In this case, though, I stuck with the longer lens and just shot until they got too big.

Stored Dreamliners in the Early Days

Having seen the increasing number of 777s and 787s parked up at Everett (777X won’t be certificated for another year or two and the 787s have stopped delivery since October due to fuselage issues and are only now starting to be accepted again), it reminded me of the number of 787s that were stored in the early days due to the extended test program given how many issues there were with the jet.  (Does this all sound rather familiar?)

I didn’t live in the Pacific Northwest in those days but came up to Seattle for an ISAP symposium.  The field trip included time with the Heritage Flight Museum n Paine Field.  We were checking out the collection and also getting to see a few of the aircraft in action.  A few of the attendees had also paid to get flights in the planes as well.  We got to hang out on the ramp as well as on the berm which I understand was a popular spot in days gone by but is now out of bounds.

There were plenty of 787s parked around the field in those days.  To be honest, I can’t recall whether deliveries were underway and the numbers had thinned a bit but the earliest airframes were the most trouble and they might have been the ones still sitting around awaiting a long list of rectification issues and the potential that the original customer wouldn’t even take them.  These are some of the jets that I got shots of that day.

At Last a Longitude

The Citation Longitude is the largest member of Cessna’s corporate jet family.  It was certificated a while back but I had never seen one.  I saw that they came in and out of Boeing Field periodically as part of NetJets’ operation but I had never been there when one was on the move.  Finally I broke that duck.  NetJets was the operator again and the sun was out for its arrival so I was happy to get a shot of what is not a particularly interesting looking plane but not a bad one either.

The First Planes I Flew

These photos are not too sharp I’m afraid.  However, they are important to me.  The summer of 1986 had me just outside Chichester learning to fly at the historic Goodwood Aerodrome.  Along with a bunch of similarly aged lads, we were being taught the basics of aviation courtesy of HMG.  It was an amazing summer and, since we were flying once or twice a day, we were learning very quickly.  I soloed on the Friday of my first week there having never even been inside a light aircraft prior to the Monday.

At some point during the summer, I borrowed my Mum’s camera and took a few pictures of the PA-38 Tomahawks that the flying school operated.  These are those planes.  In the line up of the planes can be seen G-BGRL.  This was the very first plane I flew and will always be a plane that I am fond of.  The fence behind them had a hole for a while when one student got to close with his wingtip.  It was redefined as a gate named after his student number.  The club had a PA-28 which is I the background in which I was self loading cargo for a flight for a student needing some weight and a couple of Gazelles lived next door.  That was an outstanding summer.

DOJ Duo

The Department of Justice has a fleet of planes for doing whatever they need to do with them.  I think they move detainees around but presumably their staff also can travel on them for business purposes.  Anyway, I might not know what the details are but I do know they are inconspcuous looking planes (unless you count a plane white airframe as looking more out of place than one with some color on it).  Two came in to Boeing Field while I was there a while back.  One was a 757 and the other was an ATR.  I was in place for the 757 as it was on final approach although the sun did annoyingly go behind a cloud as it came by.  It did depart alter but I was actually driving when that happened so no shots.  The ATR caught me out completely.  I had just pulled up after being away for a bit and was still sitting in the car switching the engine off as a white turboprop sailed by.  No chance to even get out of the vehicle let alone grab a shot.  That was actually the one I would have preferred but it was not to be.

777X Over the Top

Having shot the 777X test aircraft a bunch of times, I was looking for something a little different.  I figured I could head out to the north end of Boeing Field and be under the jet as it was on short final.  I shot something similar at LAX a number of years ago and liked the results so decided to have a go.  This was not as simple as I had hoped for.  First, the plane is out of sight for most of the approach with buildings and power lines in the way.

Second, I didn’t have lots of big jets to pay with.  It was my first opportunity so I didn’t have time to get the hang of it.  As it was, I didn’t do as good a job as I would have liked.  I was shooting with a wide lens and tracking the airframe to fill the frame was trickier than expected.  In the early shots, it was too far to one side of the frame and I ended up with the nose closer to the middle than ideal with the result that many shots lack a back end of the airframe.  I will try it again with these issues in mind and I shall skip the long lens shots first.  Making a quick switch meant I was not as well prepared as I could have been.  I did grab a shot through the fence of the jet heading for touchdown with Mt Rainier in the background too.

KLM Vickers Viscount

First up, a disclaimer.  This is one of the few (only?) photos on the blog that I didn’t take.  When you look at it, that should be pretty clear.  I have been working through a scanning job of old negatives and slides that my parents took.  A few shots I took too with their cameras but that is off topic.  In the process of scanning these shots, I came across a few aviation shots.  (Thanks Mum for taking some shots of RAF Hawks at Chivenor in the camo days while she was traveling passed there!). My parent made a trip to the Netherlands long before I was born and they flew there on a KLM Vickers Viscount.  My Dad kindly thought to take a picture of the plane knowing that, decades later, I would be delighted to find it.  Nice job!