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RayChuang
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A340-600 At SFO (15 April 2002)

Tue Apr 16, 2002 7:03 am

Folks,

Me and a bunch of Airliners.Net regulars saw from the Bayfront Park in Milbrae, CA the arrival of LH 8940 and the departure of LH 8941, the A340-600 test flight used for certification testing. The plane used was registered F-WWCC.

A few comments:

1. The plane is very long indeed. It is (and looks) much longer than a 747-400.

2. The Trent 556 engines look quite big on this plane. The inboard engines doesn't look like it has much in the way of ground clearance.

3. The plane parked at the gate normally used to park KLM jets flying from AMS at A Concourse.

4. Listening to scanner chatter, the ground operations people definitely had to be pretty careful handling the plane, since it's probably the longest jetliner ever flown into SFO.

5. Much to my surprise, the A346 took off on Runway 1R despite the fact the wind was blowing almost due west at 18-20 knots. The takeoff was pretty spectacular, too--the plane distinctly dipped its wings to the right at the point the plane left the ground.

All in all, it was definitely a great day to watch operations at SFO, especially since Bayfront Park offers great vantage points for almost all the runways at SFO. It was cold there today, thanks to that 18-20 knot wind from the west.
 
DeltaSFO
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RE: A340-600 At SFO (15 April 2002)

Tue Apr 16, 2002 7:29 am

Ray,

Thanks for the update.

I no longer live in the Bay Area, otherwise I most definitely would have been there to see the A340-600 in there. I hear it's quite a beautiful aircraft in person, much more so than in the pictures.

I wish Swissair were still around. I had made arrangements to be on the SFO-MEX leg of the SR round the world test flight of the A340-600. Oh well, maybe I'll get to do the Delta B777-200LR world tour someday.
It's a new day. Every moment matters. Now, more than ever.
 
Jean Leloup
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RE: A340-600 At SFO (15 April 2002)

Tue Apr 16, 2002 7:40 am

Was it on its waqy to montreal? I read it was coming here but I'm not sure. I may have to go out and have a look!
Next flight.... who knows.
 
crank
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RE: A340-600 At SFO (15 April 2002)

Tue Apr 16, 2002 7:45 am

Yeah I really hope it's coming here, though if it's coming it will be dark already.
 
nicolasrolland
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Tracking :

Tue Apr 16, 2002 8:56 am

 
bambicruz
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RE: A340-600 At SFO (15 April 2002)

Tue Apr 16, 2002 9:19 am

I actually have some doubts about the 346, it may be a little bit too long in the back which i think will make take-offs a riskier than with the other aircrafts ( maybe they need to put a small wheel like they did for the concorde ? )

my doubts have been confirmed by this picture


Click for large version
Click here for full size photo!

Photo © French Frogs AirSlide

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762er
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RE: A340-600 At SFO (15 April 2002)

Tue Apr 16, 2002 9:27 am

That tail strike in that picture was intentional for testing purposes.
 
nicolasrolland
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RE: A340-600 At SFO (15 April 2002)

Tue Apr 16, 2002 9:27 am

guess you have posted this already in the other topic but as someone else and me now say it was part of their initial test...

it's not because you have the priviledge to see it here on airliners that you must believe that it's a normal flight.. does it have any colors yet on it  Smile/happy/getting dizzy

anyways.. going to see it  Smile/happy/getting dizzy
on of the many lovely birds... such as 777 , 747 and now 340-600

cya
 
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RayChuang
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RE: A340-600 At SFO (15 April 2002)

Tue Apr 16, 2002 10:27 am

DeltaSFO,

Yes, the A340-600 is a stunning-looking plane, especially in its current Airbus manufacturer livery. But gawd that thing is LONG!  Wow! Small wonder why there was considerable ground communications chatter about taxiing the plane around the airport.

By the way, expect F-WWCC to make two more appearances at SFO on behalf of LH. This tells me that LH plans to use the A346 on the MUC-SFO-MUC route when enough planes become available.

Hopefully, we might see VS fly this plane on the LHR-SFO-LHR route by the end of 2002; the A346 in VS' current livery would definitely look stunning indeed.  Love  Big thumbs up
 
crank
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RE: A340-600 At SFO (15 April 2002)

Tue Apr 16, 2002 10:53 am

I just saw her! I saw her lights for about 15 seconds through my window! She was breaking through the clouds and disappeared out of my view.

Damn is she quiet.
 
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RayChuang
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RE: A340-600 At SFO (15 April 2002)

Wed Apr 17, 2002 8:48 am

A quick update--you might want to visit the main Airbus web page today (16 April 2002). The Airbus4U online magazine has a picture taken out the window on the left side of the A346 F-WWCC just behind the wing of San Francisco--that picture was taken just before I saw the plane fly overhead yesterday! Big grin The web page also has a picture of the F-WWCC parked at (I think) Gate A9 at the A Concourse (International Terminal) at SFO; from my vantage point I saw the plane parked there from the other side.

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