DL 45 AMS-CVG
767-300ER (first -300ER flight) N186DN
August 17, 2004
Photo © Tony Woof
We cleared security at the gate (which I'd never done before), and waited for boarding. I watched the pilots plot their route & when they looked over & saw me watching, sparked a conversation. I mentioned how I wanted to go to ERAU, had liked planes all my life, etc. & he was interested. We then talked to the relief pilot who told us that the whole crew on that flight was ex-military...he had flown C-130s & the other two had flown C-141s & F-16s respectively (not sure which did which). He invited me up to the cockpit when we got on (I wasn't even allowed to get near the cockpit on the 777), which I took advantage of. The relief pilot explained some of the paperwork & I watched them do checklists & then headed to my seat (25A). They were great to talk to....appreciate the chance to do it.
Before the boarding door closed, the captain explained some "new" TSA rules about flights heading to the US. The main ones included:
-No congregating in groups in any areas of the plane.
-Passengers need to use the lavatories in their section of the plane only.
Pushback didn't take long & we taxied to the runway. After the safety video played, the Airshow came on, which I was surprised by...didn't think DL's 763ERs had this feature. I saw an L-1011 with a blue tail on KLM's ramp, which was a surprise...especially since it had engines! Takeoff took about 40 seconds & we climbed into the skies over the Netherlands & quickly overwater. I noticed some vortices over the wings as we slowly climbed.
Our route would take us over the UK & Newcastle, then just south of Greenland, over North America near Goose Bay, then overhead CLE & into CVG. After we got settled in, they showed their relaxation video, followed by the movie "Hidalgo" which wasn't bad. During the movie, lunch was served....Pasta or Chicken were the choices, I took the latter & it was pretty good. I looked out the window & saw an Emirates A330 flying the same heading we were.
About midway over the Atlantic, several of the passengers & I noticed a hydraulic whirring noise that was unusual, as well as some vibrations on the floor. My mom told one of the FAs about it, who then alerted the pilots. The First Officer who I had talked to in AMS was the one who came back, wearing a vest, which got me a little concerned. He then came & stood in our section of the plane to listen to what we were hearing. He also heard it & called up to the flight deck. After some conversation with the pilots & two FAs, the problem was determined. The vibration & noise was coming from one of the 763ER's 6 hydraulic pumps. The captain shut it down & the problem was solved. I was thinking that we'd end up diverting to Canada or Greenland...not to be fortunately.
Once we came in over the US, it got a little choppy. The movie "Laws of Attraction" ended & "Alias" came on, at which point I took a nap. Woke up over Lake Erie. We flew directly over CLE as planned & started our descent. We passed over CMH & turned to the west, then south again & landed in CVG. We taxied into the gate & just as we parked, DL's N864DA (the ex-Soaring Spirit) plane landed on the other runway. As we taxied in, connecting gate information was shown on the screens on the plane...something I'd never seen before.
We deplaned & as we left, the F/A at the door handed my brother & I what the FO had referred to as a "baseball card"...a small card with a Delta 767-300 picture & info about it on the back. (NW used to do the same thing & I got a card from pretty much every plane in their fleet.)
We cleared customs & started our 7-hour layover. In this period, I walked around Concourse B twice, shot pics of planes, went to Concourse A & walked around there, ate, etc.
I noticed that some of the PA announcements are the same as in ATL. There's one that goes "In the interest of safety and your personal safety, do not leave your baggage unattended..." with a deep voice reading it, which is the same in both DL hubs. Also, they have the flat-screen information displays at each gate as they do @ ATL.
Finally, after what seemed like an eternity (and what would've been worse without all the scenery of the airport, we went to B15 for...
DL 771 CVG-CMH
August 17, 2004
Photo © Kyle Donagher
This was the second time I've been on this plane...the other was CMH-ATL in April on a trip to Daytona. We boarded by Zones, quite possibly the worst idea in the airline industry. We were in Zone 7, a change from our typical Zone 9. I was wearing an Embry-Riddle shirt, which caught the attention of a Chatauqua pilot. We talked for a few minutes...he graduated right after 9/11.
I boarded & took my seat, but ended up sitting with the ERJ pilot. We talked for a while...he had flown the Saab 340 before going to the ERJ. He also referred to the ERJ-135 as the "Sports Car" of their fleet. He was dead-heading to Columbus for a trip starting today (8/18) to IAD, IND & other locations. He showed me how they did scheduling & the various plans that they could bid for. It was interesting to talk to him.
The flight to CMH was uneventful & 20 minutes long. We landed well down runway 28R & rode the brakes to the end of the runway. Parked at the terminal when we landed were 2 FlyI CRJs, a UA 737, a WN 737, a couple RJs on remote stands & a DL 738 at the gate next to us.
And that's it.