ENU
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Can Anyone Identify This Airplane And Operator?

Mon Apr 30, 2007 7:20 pm

Can anyone identify this aircraft: http://airlinersgallery.blogspot.com...n741as-ferries-to-new-african.html ?

Quote:
Alaska Airlines (Seattle/Tacoma) operated the last Boeing 737-200 flight with 737-2Q8C N741AS (msn 21959) on March 29, 2007. It passed through Shannon on April 28-29 operated by Bionic Aviation of South Africa. It routed from Victorville to Rockford, Goose Bay, Keflavik, Shannon and Lisbon headed for a new operator in Nigeria.

And what seems to be fixed to the front wheel?
 
EMBQA
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RE: Can Anyone Identify This Airplane And Operator

Mon Apr 30, 2007 7:27 pm

On the nose tire is a gravel Kit.........

[Edited 2007-04-30 12:30:34]
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ENU
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RE: Can Anyone Identify This Airplane And Operator?

Mon Apr 30, 2007 7:31 pm

To be more specific:

Quoting EMBQA (Reply 1):
Bionic Aviation of South Africa

Never heard of... More info would be appreciated.

Quoting EMBQA (Reply 1):
new operator in Nigeria

Which new operator? How are they related to Bionic Aviation?

Quoting EMBQA (Reply 1):
N741AS

Will it be re-registered?

Quoting EMBQA (Reply 1):
It still has the gravel kit!

Where is a gravel kit used for? Never saw one before.

[Edited 2007-04-30 12:36:19]
 
philb
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RE: Can Anyone Identify This Airplane And Operator?

Mon Apr 30, 2007 7:36 pm

Quoting EMBQA (Reply 1):
operated by Bionic Aviation of South Africa.

According to sources at SNN the aircraft was operated on its ferry flight by CSDS Aircraft Sales and Leasing Inc with whom it is registered with the FAA. Delivery is to Bionic Aviation.
 
flyorski
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RE: Can Anyone Identify This Airplane And Operator?

Mon Apr 30, 2007 7:37 pm

Quoting ENU (Reply 2):
Where is a gravel kit used for? Never saw one before.

When landing on a gravel runway, it keeps stones from bouncing up into the engines. Used for remote airstrips in Alaska, and Canada initially, but now is also used in some Africa operations.
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philb
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RE: Can Anyone Identify This Airplane And Operator?

Mon Apr 30, 2007 7:46 pm

BTW it is cheaper to leave gravel kits in situ than it is to remove them There are no real operating penalties involved.
 
CV990
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RE: Can Anyone Identify This Airplane And Operator?

Mon Apr 30, 2007 9:05 pm

Hi!

Just to clear out a bit, TAAG from Angola have been using their 737-200's with gravel kits since at least 32 years ago!!! Take a look to this photo of D2-TAA ready to be delivered to TAAG in 1975!!!


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Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Bob Harrington - Bobqat Photographs



Ethiopian Airlines also used their 737-200's with that kit.
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a380heavy
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RE: Can Anyone Identify This Airplane And Operator?

Mon Apr 30, 2007 9:16 pm

Quoting CV990 (Reply 6):
Just to clear out a bit, TAAG from Angola have been using their 737-200's with gravel kits since at least 32 years ago!!! Take a look to this photo of D2-TAA ready to be delivered to TAAG in 1975!!!

Is it just me or can anybody else not see a gravel kit fitted to the nosewheel assembly of the 732 in the photo?

A380Heavy
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stirling
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RE: Can Anyone Identify This Airplane And Operator?

Mon Apr 30, 2007 9:40 pm

Quoting CV990 (Reply 6):
Just to clear out a bit, TAAG from Angola have been using their 737-200's with gravel kits since at least 32 years ago!!! Take a look to this photo of D2-TAA ready to be delivered to TAAG in 1975!!!

Well, maybe not that exact airplane, since it only served in the TAAG fleet for 5 years before crashing in November 1980.

At first it was thought the aircraft could be saved after landing short and having the landing gear fail off the runway at BUG - Benguela, Angola.
The major damage was confined to a fire in the right engine and wing.

TAAG fully intended for this aircraft to return to service, but the recovery crew destroyed the aircraft beyond economical repair during the removal process, rendering it a Write-Off.

I'll bet the insurance company made out like bandits though....since it was just a 5 year old frame, virtually everything beyond the right gear/wing/engine could be stripped off and sold, the sum of the parts here being worth more than the whole.
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ENU
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RE: Can Anyone Identify This Airplane And Operator?

Mon Apr 30, 2007 10:50 pm

Thanks for the clarifying replies!

Just a two more questions:
- Did Alaska airlines operate this B737 as a freighter or as a combi? You can see a cargo door on the picture.
- What is the function of the upside-down T-formed projection underneath (front side) the engines?

The website of Bionic Aviation does not provide more information: http://www.bionicaviation.com/index.html

As for supposed Nigerian operator, I first thought of Allied Air, because of the resemblance in the tail logo. But overall scheme is quite different: http://www.alliedaircargo.com/index.html .
It could very well be destined for a new operator or a private owner. Time will tell.
 
diesel1
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RE: Can Anyone Identify This Airplane And Operator

Tue May 01, 2007 6:06 am

Quoting CV990 (Reply 6):

Quoting A380Heavy (Reply 7):


Quoting ENU (Reply 9):
What is the function of the upside-down T-formed projection underneath (front side) the engines?

The gravel kit is more than just the additional kit around the nosewheel.

On the engines, fitted to the lower part of the intake, are vortex dissipators. These can be seen on the TAAG a/c (and the Bionic Aviation 737 too)

[Edited 2007-04-30 23:08:35]
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Viscount724
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RE: Can Anyone Identify This Airplane And Operator?

Tue May 01, 2007 6:45 am

Quoting Diesel1 (Reply 10):
Quoting ENU (Reply 9):
What is the function of the upside-down T-formed projection underneath (front side) the engines?

The gravel kit is more than just the additional kit around the nosewheel.

On the engines, fitted to the lower part of the intake, are vortex dissipators. These can be seen on the TAAG a/c (and the Bionic Aviation 737 too)

They blow engine bleed air down and forward to reduce the chance of gravel and debris being ingested into the engines. The gravel runway equipment for the 732C also included heavy-duty brakes and main landing gear, low pressure tires, special paint on the lower fuselage to resist stone chips/damage, a retractable rotating beacon on the lower fuselage and a few other modifications.

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