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Old 17th October 2008, 12:22   #1
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Default Birds of a different feather, and did they flock together!!

If I were given a choice to be born again in another form I'd prefer being an eagle and spend an entire lifetime exploring the skies around the planet. I think I'd spend a lot of time sightseeing. From the Himalayas, to the Serengeti plains, the Amazon to the Grand Canyon, palaces and forts around the world and ofcourse dense forests and mighty rivers.

But alas I'd have to wait a long time for that! Until then $40 million private jets sounds like fun . Now its a tough choice and the Indian Aviation Ministry decided to just help folks like me () around the country to do some jet shopping in a kind of one-stop-jet-shop. Welcome to the 2008 Aviation Expo being held in Hyderabad.

It helps to live in a city you were born in cause you make longstanding friends, friends who organise things for you. With a business visitor pass organised I spent a morning and later an evening (gorgeous one) exploring birds on tarmac (don't ask which kind)

I like V12 engines. I like torque. I like being thrust into my driving seat when I floor the pedal to the metal. So a pilot friend gave me the tour of a brand new Boeing 777. Boy what a beast. Me likee

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He said "First of all Deepak bhai, this is the world's most powerful engine, 115000 pounds of thrust !!! "

Now imagine most engines today are around 25000-35000 lbs of thrust. And what a giant of an engine this was

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I prefer the driving position to be designed ergonomically. Apparently Boeing has taken all the pain out of flying this giant bird. The computers can handle almost all the functions saving you the hassle of having to rack your brain constantly. Looking at all those switches I find it hard to believe you can sit peacefully in the driver's seat.

The cockpit of the magnificent Boeing 777

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I was assured the joystick/steering can handle turns and you don't need to use the rudder. Ah that's 1 out of a 1000 things I don't need to do!

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Talk about information overload, those switches, man these cockpits are a fiddler's delight.

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For a guy who at best handles five items between a clutch, brake, throttle, steering, and gear, using his one brain to steer a car, this multitude of switches and levers and computers (aka brains, not to mention three human ones too) was way too much for me. I needed to cool my brain. I was advised to unwind in the first class cubicle. Now it just took the inviting look of that setup for me to cool down and cheer up.

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Bored of sitting in that chair all the time? Hop over to an exclusive bar to indulge yourself. Now for all the flavours of tea I can have on the transcontinental flights!!

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Oh and before you forget you don't ask for the seat number, you ask for the...

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Your senior staff can travel in style too. I mean business class, and boy what luxury for those fellas too.

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Who said there's only so much you can do with seat adjustments ?? ask Boeing, they'll show you a dozen more!! Thank heavens car mfgs don't provide the "ZZZ" button for the driver's seat. Imagine hitting that accidentally at 200 mph on a autobahn whose curves you are not familiar with. In India we could possibly drive in the ZZZ position as already so many people take so many chances. Going through red lights is as good as driving in ZZZ position

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The real surprise though was this secret aisle which you will never get to see. Here I was told the dual shift cabin crew get to rest/sleep and recover..errrr...well I was thinking of something else

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I was always deeply impressed by the most efficient utilisation of space in aircraft toilets and pantries. The 777 doesn't surprise.

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So are you wondering if I was sold on the Boeing 777 ? Heck yes man. I wouldn't bat an eyelid before saying yessss...zzzzzz...I love that button!
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Old 17th October 2008, 12:38   #2
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Default Interesting!

Very interesting indeed!! Had some idea about cockpit, thanks to Flight Simulator. But the real one looks even more daunting for sure.

OT: Any thoughts how the name (cockpit) was derived?

As a passenger, I always found 777 to be more fun to travel compared to 747. 747,when full, looks like a market place. Don't know how they differ in terms of handling, cornering ability etc. Your view would be appreciated.

Thank you for sharing
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Old 17th October 2008, 12:43   #3
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Marvelous,and a great detailed pictorial writeup,awesome technology with luxury..wish to fly someday in it
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Old 17th October 2008, 12:59   #4
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Now for those of you who prefer travelling with the entire village there is, ofcourse, the new humungous whale with wings Airbus A 380.

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Here you see the juggernaut being given a traditional ceremonial welcome (ie with water cannons, not flower garlands , anyone recommend we start using such cannons for our politicians ? Thank you for visiting our constituency, here you go, whoooshhh)

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I honestly feel they should call this plane the Airbus Baluga. It is gigantic. Its so big you can host a rock concert within or play football. Did the designer sit at a table looking wistfully out of the window on a cold wintery night sipping a hot cuppa saying, she's got to be able to shift an entire village in one go ?? Maybe the UN should buy a dozen for an evacuation fleet.

The Big Bird is an outstanding achievement. When I first heard the A380 was going to land at Begumpet airport which is in the heart of the city I had two doubts, will the Fatehnagar bridge survive the landing or the Secunderabad club (both in line of the runway). Runway? this machine may need a 10 mile stretch of an autobahn. But was I wrong!!!

As we stood chatting on the tarmac close to the runway we simply didn't hear the giant bird swoop down as it did a low pass near the airshow stands. It then circled (I thought it would hit Warangal to make a turn, again wrong) and was back in no time to so silently land, and most surprisingly like a bush plane come to a halt in a very short span of the runway. We were dumbstruck. Now that is some cutting edge aircraft tech in silent engine power and braking.

Last edited by DKG : 17th October 2008 at 13:11.
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Old 17th October 2008, 12:59   #5
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Deepak,

That's an amazing way to spend a morning/evening. I saw the posters of the air-show while I was in Hyd.

Great to know that you explored all aspects of the aircraft -- even the hidden/secret ones :-)

BTW, all these controls/buttons in cockpit. Do they actually do something or are they just to make it look complex. In Fly-by-wire tech days, I wonder if the pilot/co-pilot actually press these buttons to do something.

Cheers,
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Old 17th October 2008, 13:26   #6
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Amazing narration and some very rare pictures !! Thanks for sharing

Abhi
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Old 17th October 2008, 13:42   #7
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Wow! Amazing. Very much detailed and informative.
This is something we mere passengers doesn't always get to know about. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 17th October 2008, 13:51   #8
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Dont they need to ICE one of these things???? imagine that !!!!!!
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Old 17th October 2008, 13:52   #9
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This has to be the world's best offroading machine, atleast in my opinion

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All the camping equipment you care to carry can fit in here. This Bell copter can plonk 6+2 people on mountain tops which no regular offroader can dream of reaching.

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And now for the sports cars of the aviation world. There were many many gorgeous, sensous, exquisitely crafted, luxuriously appointed business and luxury jets. I couldn't get over the mahogany (I believe it could be) wood finish. It was like glass. And the sense of privacy these jets afford, wow, another world man!!

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Everytime I fly I wonder during landing the amazing tech that goes into aviation tyres. How do they hold up, how do they handle the heat generated, how do they retain traction in strong crosswinds. So many questions. I finally got to walk up to these amazing fellas and pat them in appreciation. Felt great

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A chicklet's view of Big Momma Bird

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Literally

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As the sun set, it was a spectacular feeling to stand beside these magnificent machines, so beautiful, so pure in design with only one purpose, to fly. Now to look forward to my eagle life!!

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As the show for the day came to an end we were treated to a surreal view of paratroopers as they gracefully descended to the grassland by the runway. Man has always wanted to fly!

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As I didn't plan for this visit the pictures are courtesy my iphone. Wish I had the SLR for some amazing photo ops

Last edited by DKG : 17th October 2008 at 14:00.
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Old 17th October 2008, 14:00   #10
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Amazing show. Very nice pictures. Glad they are putting the NTR Airport to good use.

I am going later this evening to check out the 319 and the 777
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Old 17th October 2008, 14:09   #11
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The 777 is very comfortable to fly in ( as a passenger --even in baggage class ) .Is IMO much more comfortable than a 747. But then a 747 is the most beautiful of the lot. A 380 IMO is ugly with the designer giving very little weightage to beauty.Yet to fly in one though or see one for real.
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Old 17th October 2008, 14:32   #12
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Wow beautiful. How i wish you could get pics of a pvt jet. Anyways deepak bhai thanks for sharing. Hope sometime soon i can have a nap with the ZZZZ button!!
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Old 17th October 2008, 19:31   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DKG View Post

As we stood chatting on the tarmac close to the runway we simply didn't hear the giant bird swoop down as it did a low pass near the airshow stands. It then circled (I thought it would hit Warangal to make a turn, again wrong) and was back in no time to so silently land, and most surprisingly like a bush plane come to a halt in a very short span of the runway. We were dumbstruck. Now that is some cutting edge aircraft tech in silent engine power and braking.
Off Topic, reminds me of a documentary i saw 2 days back on National geographic. here is a related clip.

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Old 17th October 2008, 20:41   #14
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What a gorgeous thread...
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Old 17th October 2008, 21:04   #15
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A great thread, DKG! Nice photos and good narration!

Just feel the adrenaline rush that you will have when you get these babies on full thrust! WOW!!! Man, that's life!
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