Ilyushin96M From United States of America, joined Sep 1999, 2609 posts, RR: 13 Reply 1, posted (14 years 2 weeks 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 1166 times:
Hey there - bet you were expecting me to reply, eh?
The first and only time I flew in an Ilyushin IL62 was on Aeroflot's SFO-ANC-SVO route back in 1993. The IL62 has a 6 abreast pax seating layout in coach, 4 abreast in business class. The older versions - before IL62M - have uncovered overhead storage, the IL62M and IL62MK have covered bins. IL62s do not have pax service units, but they do have individual fans for each seat, located in the seatbacks. The one I flew in had rather ugly dark blue seats, which lack support and necessitate constant shifting to stay comfortable. The aircraft is relatively quiet, its four engines being located at the tail. The flight was very smooth, the landing as well. The only odd characteristic I noticed on the IL62 was the in-flight reversal of the outter two engines to slow the aircraft for landing. This produced a heavy braking affect and a sudden drop in altitude. This is a standard procedure on the IL62. Another unique characteristic and piece of equipment is the IL62's tail-deployed support for when the aircraft is loaded. This looks like a small pair of wheels on a long pipe, and is used so that the aircraft will not tip back when loaded from the rear as it is tail-heavy.
I hope that's thorough enough. Anything else I can help with, let me know.
Ilyushin96M From United States of America, joined Sep 1999, 2609 posts, RR: 13 Reply 3, posted (14 years 2 weeks 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 1154 times:
From what I've heard, the IL62 is the only airliner which uses this procedure. You can see the engines in reverse on some photos of the IL62 landing. This is visible only on Soloviev D30KU-powered IL62Ms and IL62MKs. The IL62 with Kuznetsov engines has the thrust reversers as internal flaps which are not visible, save for the reverser grilles on the tops and bottoms of the engines.
Skylinepigeon From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 4, posted (14 years 2 weeks 5 hours ago) and read 1123 times:
I had the pleasure of flying on Il-62Ms from Moscow Domodedovo (DME) to Vladivostok (VVO) and back in August 1993 (flight nos. SU001/2). There were forward and aft 'cabins', divided by a large central galley. On the outbound flight I had not been given a seat assignment, so I picked an aisle seat in an emergency exit row, giving good legroom. The aircraft had rather saggy seats upholstered in grey and dark red; there were 1960s-style open overhead racks, not bins. On start-up and taxi there was a great deal of engine noise. There were no safety-cards in sight and no briefing was given, and at take-off many passengers had not fastened their seat belts. I didn't time the take-off run, but it seemed to take forever! Eventually we were climbing away, with the engine noise now replaced by a whooshing sound along with dripping water from the air conditioning vents. Just in front of me were a young couple with a baby; there were fittings on the galley bulkhead which allowed a cradle for the baby to be attached. There seemed not to be a cabin service trolley, but the flight attendants made frequent journeys to and from the galley carrying trays. No choice of beverage was available; the f/as just appeared with tray-loads of plastic cups containing lemonade, or on another occasion, hot sweet tea. Food (chicken wing on a bed of soggy rice, and a slice of sausage) was adequate. This was an overnight flight, and after dinner the heating was turned up and I managed to sleep. Flight time was 8hr 16min, and by the time we landed it was Friday 13th! The landing speed seemed to be fast though the touchdown was smooth, and the reverse thrust produced a strong deceleration; even so we went right to the end of the runway, requiring a 180deg turn and back-track.
The aircraft on the return trip had a nicer interior, with grey/green/blue seats. Both front and rear cabins had 3+3 seating, and it looked to me as if seat pitch was less in the front. The window-shades were of smoked perspex, rather than the opaque variety used on Western aircraft, but as there was no possibility of an in-flight movie, I suppose this didn't matter. Returning to DME we seemed to do an orbit on the approach, I estimated at about 3000ft, with people still wandering about the cabin or reclined across several seats.
All in all it was quite an experience, but one I didn't repeat. After various Aeroflot horror stories, when I decided to return to Vlad 2 years later, I flew Alaska Airlines from Seattle - but that's another story.
Skylinepigeon From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 6, posted (14 years 1 week 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 1086 times:
Thanks for your interest, Ilyushin96M, and I hope AngelAirways will forgive me for going off-topic. I believe Alaska Airlines started sevices to the Russian far east in about 1992. It appears from their website that these have now been discontinued. They used MD-83s, a small number of which had additional equipment added (for navigation, I believe). It is possible they also had undercarriage modifications, as Russian runways seem to be built from blocks of concrete with expansion gaps between, which make them a lot less smooth than elsewhere. The aircraft I flew on was N968AS, msn 53016.
I made the trip in May 1995. The outbound flight, AS201, routed Seattle-Anchorage-Magadan-Khabarovsk-Vladivostok. As I recall, the crew changed at ANC; for the international part of the flight there were 3 captains on the flight deck, 3 flight attendants, an interpreter, and a mechanic (Mike, aka Misha) who was responsible for supervising turnarounds and generally keeping order on board! Magadan (GDX) is at a similar latitude to ANC, but whereas in Alaska there had been blue skies and mild (60F) temperatures, GDX was 32F with blowing snow! Transit passengers were allowed into the terminal building, best described as austere. No other aircraft moved during our stop-over. Khabarovsk (KHV) had an impressive line-up of Il-62s (over 20 with at least 3 being broken up). I also counted about 15 Tu-154s. A B747F of Evergreen departed, and one of Kalitta landed during our 50min stay. The landing at VVO was at about 7:30pm local time, and the elapsed time since SEA was 15hr 22min with 10hr 53min airborne. The aircraft night-stopped before leaving the next day, I presume with the same crew.
The return flight 2 weeks later, AS206, was by the same route except without the stop at KHV. Misha was again on board. We were quite lightly laden initially, and the climbout from VVO was impressive (continuing my affection for the MD-80 family, which I had also flown with TWA and AA). At GDX (now a balmy 34F) a group of hunters boarded, returning to the US from a bear-hunting trip. There was a good deal of banter between them and the f/as, to which the crew were more than equal! Clearing customs at ANC at around midnight brought the interesting experience of seeing rifles going round on the baggage carousel, as well as irregularly shaped items wrapped in canvas, some leaving a trail of blood over the floor.
The onward flight to SEA was delayed waiting for passengers, and we didn't get in until 5am (yes, sleepless in Seattle). I then connected with a UA flight to SFO. Having crossed the dateline between GDX and ANC, I was able to record my VVO departure time as 09:01, 17-May-95, and my SFO arrival as 08:56, 17-May-95.
If anyone from Alaska Airlines reads this, thanks for a superb sevice and a trip I'll always remember. I would also be interested to read of anyone else's experiences (pax or crew) of flying in the Russian far east.