Vs773er From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2004, 269 posts, RR: 1 Posted (8 years 5 months 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 9578 times:
Does anyone have any stories of commercial pilots having fun on short haul flights, ferry flights, empty flights or final flights etc etc.
Nothing to get anyone in trouble, just some fun tails of what it must be like to have the opportunity to make the most of being a pilot!!!! (Fast take-offs, steap climbs, tight banks, aerobatics!!!!!???)
ZKSUJ From New Zealand, joined May 2004, 6937 posts, RR: 10 Reply 1, posted (8 years 5 months 6 days 14 hours ago) and read 9511 times:
I would imagine that cargo guys have all the fun they want without too much to worry about. I have seen some steep climbs at the airport so it does happen, although I do not think it is for fun but probably for other reasons like gaining altitude quicker etc...
IL76TD From United States of America, joined Jul 2004, 289 posts, RR: 0 Reply 2, posted (8 years 5 months 6 days 14 hours ago) and read 9498 times:
I know of a company that had 2 cargo flights depart almost simultaneously for a common destination that pretty much had a race the whole way there. Apparently the fuel burn was pretty high for the route.
Dca727fan From United States of America, joined Aug 2004, 3 posts, RR: 0 Reply 6, posted (8 years 5 months 6 days 10 hours ago) and read 9195 times:
Not so much a tale of pilots having fun as doing something nice for the passengers. A few years ago I did a F100 hop on USAir from BUF-DCA. It was a beautiful winter day, and as we lined up to depart the pilot announced that we were going to do a detour up to Niagara Falls. We climbed up a few thousand feet, and then did two large banking turns over the falls, one to the right and one to the left to turn back south.
Stall From Switzerland, joined Apr 2004, 257 posts, RR: 0 Reply 8, posted (8 years 5 months 6 days 9 hours ago) and read 9105 times:
A few years ago in Switzerland a Dornier 328 (from Air Engadina) performed a roll on a post check flight (obviously with no passenger on board). The pilots didn't say anything about this but maintenance personnel somewhere discovered it when they reviewed flight data. Actually no stress was put on the airframe, its seemed the roll was very well executed.
I don't remember what happened to the crew (they probably were fired)
BIGBlack From United States of America, joined Aug 2004, 600 posts, RR: 0 Reply 9, posted (8 years 5 months 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 8936 times:
I saw a very very nice UA pilot go out of his way for a pax that was DEATHLY afraid of flying. Crying, shaking, sick, before we even took off. Post 9/11 he brought her up to the cockpit and really talked to her about how much flying was safe and what it meant for him. It is pretty cool. I can tell he enjoyed his job cause the passion. He kept having the F/A check on her. It was nice to see.
PlaneSmart From New Zealand, joined Dec 2004, 739 posts, RR: 0 Reply 13, posted (8 years 5 months 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 8663 times:
New Zealand had a pilot legend in Capt Fred Ladd. There is a book abt him called Up and Away.
He flew a plane under the Auckland Harbour bridge, which got him suspended from flying for a few mths.
In the 60's he flew Grumman seaplanes. If there were overseas tourists on board (the locals knew what he did), he would board wearing dark glasses and white cane, and sit with the passengers. After a while, he would loudly state lets give the pilot a few more minutes, but if he doesn't turn up i'll fly the plane. He would then proceed to fumble his way down to the cockpit, fiddle with the controls, eventually getting both engines running. They had to have ground crew on hand outside to return passengers to their seats.
I also recall flying back from Great Barrier Island to Auckland in the early 80's on a Grumman seaplane. The pilot said it was his last flight with the company, as he was heading overseas, and there would be a few detours, which included flying around TV/radio masts and the islands on the way.
Matthewkh From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 72 posts, RR: 1 Reply 14, posted (8 years 5 months 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 8591 times:
On Dash 8 prop balances in the middle of the night, sometimes the pilots would have fun and pull some zero-g maneuvers. I never got to go up myself, but a few of my co-workers have and they had a blast. Sometimes, before they got everybody on board the pilots would place cups of water in the seat pockets of a seat they knew somebody was going to sit in, and when they went zero-g the water would come up and get the mechanic wet. Good times.
United_Fan From United States of America, joined Nov 2000, 7160 posts, RR: 8 Reply 15, posted (8 years 5 months 6 days 4 hours ago) and read 8519 times:
NWADC9,I had the same experience on a UA 757 SNA-ORD last Dec. The Capt was very informative. Gave runway legnths/altitudes and fuel-burns for the whole trip . He also explained all about flow control into ORD after a know-it-all passenger called someone in Chicago and learned that the weather wasn't bad there.
'Empathy was yesterday...Today, you're wasting my Mother-F'ing time' - Heat.
Starlionblue From Hong Kong, joined Feb 2004, 15872 posts, RR: 66 Reply 16, posted (8 years 5 months 6 days 4 hours ago) and read 8487 times:
One Scandi pilot who did a lot of charters was famous among F/As. He would take off from ARN, then get on the PA and say something like: "Just to give you an idea of your surroundings... on the left is the sausage stand in Upplands Väsby". Then he would wait a couple of seconds and suddenly roll the plane left, then yell in a worried voice: "Don't everybody look at once!"
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - from Citadel by John Ringo
Vs773er From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2004, 269 posts, RR: 1 Reply 17, posted (8 years 5 months 6 days 4 hours ago) and read 8140 times:
The test pilots at air shows, when showing off the latest commercial birds, seem to really push the limits (SA B744 & A346 @ Farnborough this year!), just wondered if these where only limited to air shows?
Aa717driver From United States of America, joined Feb 2002, 1566 posts, RR: 14 Reply 18, posted (8 years 5 months 6 days 4 hours ago) and read 8146 times:
Not that I was ever involved in this but...
A certain commuter in Iowa flying E110's in the mid-80's used to have two flights departing from DBQ for CID about 5 min. apart. The second one would usually be empty. Occasionally, the first would be empty, too.
Sometimes they flew formation, sometimes the second would climb to 10,000' and make a pass on the first plane and one of the ticket agent's houses got buzzed frequently.
Only rumor, of course...TC
P.S.--I'm not even going into the sex in the lower galley of the L10...
DABZF From Germany, joined Mar 2004, 1190 posts, RR: 1 Reply 19, posted (8 years 5 months 6 days 4 hours ago) and read 8026 times:
I saw this travelling on cockpit jumpseat on B74F few years back...
After reaching the cruising altitude the captain took his laptop from his bag and started to fly a cesna on a MS Flight Simulator - there we were cruising on a fully loaded B74F and this guy wanted to fly his cesna instead
He said he loves flying... and added that commercial flying is sometimes pretty booring... go figure!?
He let me to fly as well... and I landed the B747 to FRA (our final destination) nice and smoothly - ok it was with the Flight Simulator
I like driving backwards in the fog cause it doesn't remind me of anything - Chris Cornell
LMML 14/32 From Malta, joined Jan 2001, 2559 posts, RR: 7 Reply 20, posted (8 years 5 months 6 days 2 hours ago) and read 7086 times:
This is on regular live flights. One pilot had this habit of "shooting down" other aircraft flying in the opposite direction by switching on the stick shaker on our B732. This sounded like a gatling gun firing rounds. I will never forget the look on a 10 year old boy who was visiting the cockpit (pre 9/11 of course) when this pilot "shot" a plane down to entertain him!
Zvezda From Lithuania, joined Aug 2004, 10511 posts, RR: 65 Reply 21, posted (8 years 5 months 6 days 1 hour ago) and read 6753 times:
Test pilots don't have to wait for airshows to have a little fun. I participated in the acceptance flight testing and delivery of an A319. I was in the left cockpit jumpseat when we did 60 degree turns, -1g and +2.5g. ATC assigned us all the airspace from FL200 to FL300 in a triangular area over the North Sea and told us to "Have fun!" This was routine for them.
Av8 From United States of America, joined Nov 2001, 37 posts, RR: 0 Reply 22, posted (8 years 5 months 6 days 1 hour ago) and read 6614 times:
At the fairly decent-sized un-towered airport I work line service at, I frequently see pilots from a freight company in an old, dirty Lear 23 do some absolutley amazing climbs. I saw them once do something they peobably would've gotten violated for: They spooled up the engines (extremely loud engines, too, almost like a flighter jet), released the brake and lifted off in what seemed about 1000 feet. They then proceeded to remain fairly level, retracted the gear and let the speed build. I bet they were 5000 feet down the runway going almost 250 and I then saw a Lear do a climb that I didn't think was possible for something other than a fighter to do. I mean, probably 70-80º nose up and just ROCKETING. It was cool, nonetheless.
Cedarjet From United Kingdom, joined May 1999, 7712 posts, RR: 55 Reply 23, posted (8 years 5 months 6 days ago) and read 6449 times:
A friend of mine was an MEA flight engineer on 707s from the late 60s to the late 80s. Boy oh boy does this guy have some stories - horrible experiences like being shot at on take off and / or approach, or being in the middle of a hijack on the ground in Beirut, popping all the doors and slides to get the passengers off when a fucking massive fight breaks out in the suburb next to the airport with RPGs hitting the tarmac around them so they start engines and takeoff with the doors open, slides out, half the passengers still onboard, and fly to Cyprus (40mins) at 5,000 feet. Defeaning.
One really funny mental image is the tale (tail? ho ho) of how they had to do the "Cockpit Smoke Evacuation" checklist [evacuation referring to the removal of the smoke, not the occupants] because all three (or four) cockpit crew would be smoking cigars, and the smoke was so heavy that it was impossible to see, and the flight engineer would have to run a checklist and open outflow valves and god knows what else. This sits comfortably, by the way, with everything I know about the Lebanese national character.
On the good side, barrel rolling 707s on delivery flights, airtests, training missions etc. This happened all the time in the early days, since Tex Johnson (Johnston?) rolled the 367 for the cameras at the Seattle World's Fair in the late 50s. MEA (among many others) used to do it on test flights. Now that's pilots enjoying themselves, it's the 60s and you're barrel rolling 707s in the sunshine over the Mediteranean after smoking a few Cuban cigars. It stopped after Lufthansa had a 707 (or a 720B) blow up halfway through a second roll on a training flight. If I recall, the maneouvre was badly executed (the aircraft has to be allowed to fall naturally as it banks, which makes the whole thing a 1G maneouvre; handled poorly, the G forces can destroy the aircraft very quickly, even a 707, "the plane that can do everything but read"). Fleet managers (who were doing it just like everyone else until then) had to call a halt.
Even on more sedate delivery flights, pilots used to (and maybe still) do cool stuff, I read a really old book about jets ("behind the scenes in the jet age!!!") called Loud And Clear by Robert J Serling (yep, Twilight Zone relation)which should be compulsory reading for anyone who loves aviation (like Fate Is The Hunter, well, almost) - go to eBay and find both of these. In Loud And Clear, the author flies in the jumpseat of a brand-new Northwest 727-100 from Seattle to Minneapolis, and they buzz the captain's (remote and tiny) hometown at a few thousand feet (which would be mental, some desert town in South Dakota and a 727-100 roars down the main street - this is 1967 remember...what the faaaaark was that?).
Speaking of Lebanon, my last "jumpseat" ride (end of Aug, 2001), I was on a Malev 737 from Budapest to Beirut and a newhire cabin crew wanted the jumpseat for landing (her first trip into BEY) so the captain said I could just stand behind him ("brace your right hand against my seat for when we use reverse thrust"), which was amazing, definitely my best jumpseat ride ever. I was leaving behind the most horrific breakup with the love of my life in London, so to have such a great experience was proof of something good in the universe. Beirut is as interesting as Kai Tak with the high rises and high ground on the approach so it was a good place for it to happen. We swooped in through a valley in the highrises and made a perfect landing, nice work Malev and definitely a captain enjoying himself.
fly Saha Air 707s daily from Tehran's downtown Mehrabad to Mashhad, Kish Island and Ahwaz
XJRamper From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 2345 posts, RR: 52 Reply 24, posted (8 years 5 months 6 days ago) and read 6367 times:
One that I can think of right off the top of my head:
I was on a mesaba flight from tol to dtw, on my way to den, where I was the only pax onboard. We had light fuel and the weather was great. I still worked for NW at the time, but I was still a paying pax. The crew knew this and they were talking over the intercom the entire time. We did a high perf takeoff (shortfield takeoff) on 25. We were in the air after a few seconds of ground roll, did a steep bank after clearing the field, and made it into pattern in dtw in about 7 mins. The pilots started singing leaving on a jet plane and then did their rendition(which was not half bad) of friends in "high" places and lean on me. It was a great flight and put me out of my previous bitter mood.
Look ma' no hands!
25 NWADC9: What is it with pilots and "I'm Leavin' on a Jet Plane"?
26 ANCFlyer: If we're not restricted to civilian pilots I can tell you about a ride from Dillingham to Anchorage on a UV-18 (DHC-6 Twin Otter) about 1995. We left
27 Type-rated: Facutal Corrections: The barrel roll that Tex Johnston did in the 707 prototype was near a golf course where Bill Allen was playing golf with other ai
28 Boo25: When the 737-400 was introduced in 1989/1990 we had a crew of 50 based in Bristol UK with a brand new 734... We used to position an aircraft from Bris
29 Starlionblue: I may be wrong, but I never heard of the 707 being called the 367 The one rolled by Tex was not really a 707, but rather Boeing Model 367-80 ("Dash 8
30 Ba97: In the mid 1980s flying into Pittsburg from Toronto on some very very small 2 engine prop plane with US air I think. We were flying just above the clo
31 Nycfuturepilot: A friend of mine was flying on an AirNet Lear Jet and one of the pilots went to sleep on the floor in the back so my friend was sitting in the right s
32 Jfkaua: Doesn't flipping a plane over screw the fuel system up?
33 Type-rated: Starlionblue Thanks, I learned something new. I knew the prototype was called the "Dash 80" (which is now at the Smithsonian), but I never knew it was
34 2H4: I've heard a story involving a Learjet charter flight out of Las Vegas. Apparently, the flight crew had to pick up several folks who had been partying
35 Type-rated: 2H4: I think I know the pilot who did that on the LearJet. It happened quite some time ago!