UK_Dispatcher
Topic Author
Posts: 2254
Joined: Fri Dec 21, 2001 8:44 pm

Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Fri Aug 24, 2007 11:52 pm

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After two days working in Damascus, Syria it was once again time to return to Abu Dhabi. However, as with many of my trips I had plans to take advantage of being in Damascus and take one of the several more exotic flights I had planned for this year. I had deliberately made sure that my two days of work in Damascus were scheduled for a Wednesday and Thursday so that I could easily be available on the Friday morning to take this rather special weekly flight. Earlier in the year, Iran Air began a rather unusual (and highly political) flight starting in Tehran, Iran and operating via Damascus to Caracas, Venezuela. This is as a result of the special friendship which Hugo Chavez seems to have with his anti-US counterparts in Iran and Syria. Say what you will about it, but for the aviation enthusiast it is an absolute dream – to take a flight on a Boeing 747SP across the Mediterranean and Atlantic on a fourteen hour flight that pushes even this special performance aircraft to its limits.

I received an e-mail a couple of weeks earlier from someone who had seen my plan to take this flight on the airliners.net civil aviation forum in a thread of the same subject. He said he also wanted to take the same trip so we decided to meet in Damascus on the Thursday evening and both take the flight the next morning. Alex would then fly American Airlines to MIA and LHR as he needed to get back to the UK for work but I had made plans to take advantage of my location once again and try for another elusive aircraft type – the Ilyushin IL-62M. The day after we were due to arrive in CCS there was a Cubana flight in the afternoon to Havana and it was scheduled to be operated with an IL-62. This was simply too good to resist so I had made a reservation on this flight as well as another Cubana IL-62 flight to Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic the following morning. I then planned to travel SDQ-JFK with American Airlines so that I could take the direct Etihad Airways flight back to Abu Dhabi from JFK the morning after. My plan now looked like this:

Iran Air
IR744/04MAY
DAM / CCS
74L

Cubana de Aviacion
CU313/05MAY
CCS / HAV
IL6

Cubana de Aviacion
CU200/06MAY
HAV / SDQ
IL6

American Airlines
AA1582 / 06MAY
SDQ / JFK
AB6

Etihad Airways
EY100 / 07MAY
JFK / AUH
345



After a pleasant evening out in Damascus on the Thursday evening with a couple of my very hospitable Syrian colleagues, we arrived back at the hotel at around half past midnight. It would not give us a massive amount of sleep but nothing was going to stop us from getting up the next morning bearing in mind the flight we were hoping to take. The reason I say ‘hoping’ is that neither of us had a confirmed reservation on the flight. We both work for different airlines and had managed to get ZED tickets for the DAM-CCS sector, which are on a space available basis only. Bearing in mind that this flight is capped at 100 passengers due to payload restrictions there was no question that there would be space available, but being accepted for the flight was going to depend on the underload once the final fuel figures had been decided. From a contact in Iran I had managed to find out that a total of around 65 passengers were booked to CCS which sounded great but if Iran Air wanted to use the extra payload for cargo it was still possible that we would not get on the flight.

After checking out we met outside the hotel the next morning where a car would be collecting us to take us to Damascus International Airport. The journey to the airport took around twenty minutes so we were soon making our way into the terminal with only a limited sense of excitement – it was all going to be a bit tense until such a time as we might be accepted for the flight. It was particularly tense for me as I had made confirmed reservations on the Cubana and American Airlines flights so I stood to waste a lot of money if we did not get on this flight. Still, I felt the risk was worth it.

After quite a long wait to get through security which was something of a bottleneck, we finally entered the check-in area and headed to the check-in desks for our flight. We were wearing our respective airline ID cards at this time since we were travelling on staff tickets. The gentleman from Iran Air must have spotted this as when a new desk opened and we moved across he told us to wait until the end. This meant there was definitely a chance of us not being accepted so we started talking about options for getting back from DAM to AUH and LHR respectively. Something else which did not make the situation look too good was the fact that several other passengers were later told to wait until the end – I believe these were revenue passengers. I assumed that the Iran Air representative was waiting for the Captain to pass a final fuel figure before they could take any more passengers. These flights will always be limited at take-off weight due to the massive fuel load being uplifted ex-DAM. After some time the Iran Air representative finally beckoned all remaining passengers including ourselves to come forward and check-in. We were both relieved and extremely happy to say the least.

We were given our boarding passes for seats together near the rear of the aircraft and then headed towards immigration. The departures area beyond the immigration counters is quite small and the limited amount of gates are closed until not long before the boarding starts. There was a queue outside our gate and departure time came and went while we waited, but this was not surprising as the outbound crew had only passed through a short time earlier and we were accepted pretty late at the check-in. Still, we were in no hurry and were quite content to wait.

After a while boarding commenced and as with many departures at DAM the aircraft was parked on a remote stand. From the gate we could see the aircraft and make out the registration as EP-IAB. I knew it would be either this machine or EP-IAD as these were the only two (of four) in active service at the time. This aircraft was very recently taken out of storage and overhauled so I was quite pleased to be travelling on this particular one. When I was in THR in January the aircraft was in the hangar being prepared for its return to service.

When the agent at the gate saw our boarding passes he asked us to wait for a moment rather than board the coach with the rest of the passengers but it soon became apparent that we would be taking alternative transport to the aircraft. One of the Syrian Arab Airlines staff who I had been training for the past couple of days was the Load Controller assigned to the flight and he knew I was travelling to CCS as I had mentioned it the previous day. He invited us into his jeep and then personally drove us to the aircraft. We passed behind Syrian Arab Airlines B727-200 YK-AGB ‘Damascus’ just after leaving the gate. I commented to my friend that I had flown on this aircraft AUH-DAM on my previous visit in 2005.

YK-AGB
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As we crossed the apron I stuck my camera out of the sunroof and managed to get a quick shot of the aircraft that would shortly be taking us all the way across the Mediterranean and Atlantic.

EP-IAB
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When we arrived at the aircraft we stayed on the apron next to the car for a couple of minutes where we were able to admire the magnificent B747SP before boarding. From my previous visit I knew that photographing on the ramp was usually not a problem so managed to take a few quick shots before and during boarding.

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As we reached the top of the stairs I looked back along the leading edge, where fuelling was still underway. The Load Controller told me that the final fuel figure was 140,000kg.

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We made our way through the cabin past the L2 and L3 doors to our assigned seats near the rear, but decided instead of taking an A and C seat to both take window seats on adjacent rows so we could each experience the view from the windows. We were several rows behind the wing so the view would be pretty clear.

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Once fuelling and boarding were complete the door was closed and the crew proceeded to move all passengers into the last section of economy where we were seated in order for the aircraft to be in trim at take-off. As the aircraft was parked on a power-off stand the engines were started on stand. As the aircraft powered away from the stand the take-off flap setting was selected and I noticed that the B747SP flap arrangement is different to other B747s – something I did not previously realise.

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It was only a short distance from the stand to the runway in use for departures and as the aircraft lined up we got a glimpse of two Syrian Arab Airlines Tupolev Tu-134s – YK-AYD and ‘YC which looked like they had been languishing there for some time.

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AB was now fully lined up and take-off thrust was applied. It was nice to know that we were about to experience a B747SP take-off at maximum take-off weight (MTOW).

Take-off from DAM
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After take-off we banked to the left and then flew west (the opposite direction to that of our destination) and did so for around twenty minutes or so, covering quite a significant part of Syria. Other passengers noticed this too, as I could see them pointing at the moving map on the big screen at the front of the cabin. Finally the aircraft then turned and headed north west over northern Syria before finally leaving Syria’s Mediterranean coast.

Climbing out of DAM
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Leaving Syria’s Mediterranean coast
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At around this time, the crew advised all the passengers who had been moved for the trim at take-off that they could move back to their allocated seats.

About fifteen to twenty minutes into the Mediterranean we passed over the island of Cyprus and had a clear view of the southern coastline, where resorts such as Larnaca, Limassol and Paphos all lie.

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I was particularly pleased to get a nice view of Paphos, as it reminded me of two summer holidays there with my family in 1993 and ’94 when I was in my early teens. On those occasions we flew MAN-PFO-MAN with Air 2000 on B757-200 aircraft. That was when Air 2000 was still Air 2000 and wore their original gold/red colourscheme, but I digress....

Paphos, Cyprus
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Whilst looking down on the south west coast of Cyprus the crew passed through the cabin and performed the first service of the flight – a hot breakfast. The breakfast hot item consisted of chicken, potato, tomato, spinach and something with egg and potato that I can only liken to a Spanish tortilla. A croissant and preserves were also included as well as fruit in the form of pineapple. I was also given a can of orange juice and later offered tea or coffee. As always, I had a cup of tea. The breakfast was actually quite pleasant and certainly ‘filled a gap’.

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We had both been awake for a few hours by now and were quite tired due to the late night and early start so decided to get some sleep.

I awoke around four hours later and took a look out of the window to find that we were over land. It actually looked quite green so I guessed it could not be anywhere in north Africa and could only imagine that we must be over Italy or Spain.

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Around half an hour later I decided to take a walk around the cabin to stretch my legs and also to get the one window shot I really wanted to get. There were no passengers seated by the R2 door so from the first window aft of the door I managed to get a nice shot of the leading edge and engines. I have often wondered what the black lines are on the leading edge of the B747-100, -200 and SP models which do not seem to appear on the -300 or -400. I’m sure someone can tell me.

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Before I returned to my seat I decided to take a photo and video of the cabin interior which was actually quite clean and tidy – presumably since the aircraft was recently overhauled before returning to service.



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A couple of hours later and eight hours into the flight the crew started the second service which included a hot lunch. There was a choice of a beef or chicken dish and I chose the beef. It was served in rice and it actually looked like there was no beef in it but a quick ‘dig’ revealed the beef inside. There was also a savoury appetiser – I can not remember what this was but do remember it being very nice. Also included was a salad, a pot of natural yoghurt, bread and a dessert. To drink I asked for a Sprite and was given Zam Zam – an Iranian brand of soda which was more than fine. My friend also got Zam Zam cola rather than Coke. Naturally, alcohol is not served on Iranian carriers.

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As we had slept pretty well so far, the flight had passed quite quickly but there were of course six hours still to go. For much of the remainder of the flight we chatted on and off, rested some more and I also showed my friend some photos from some of the other interesting flights I have taken.

Around an hour and a quarter before landing we passed over the island of Barbados to the right, where I actually spent ten days in February. It did seem a little strange looking down on Holetown from an Iran Air aircraft. I had to go to the R4 door to get a view of the island.

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It was around thirty-five minutes before we saw any more land and I assumed that by now we must be in Venezuelan airspace. I later found out that it was actually Margarita Island and an airport was also visible.

Margarita Island
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I am sure someone from Venezuela will be able to tell me something about the other much smaller island we passed over a few minutes later.

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It was not long before we finally started our descent towards Caracas and the area on the coast where the airport is located could just be made out in the distance to the south.

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Finally we made the turn to land from the west and the flaps were deployed. The approach was over the sea so there was not much to see from the left during the approach.



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Landing in CCS
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As we taxied in towards the terminal there was a colourful array of airlines and aircraft in evidence and the mountainous backdrop was very scenic.

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Finally, we were in Caracas and I was in South America for the first time. This was to be a fleeting visit as I had some more ‘exotic’ flying planned for the next day but it was a nice feeling to have flown directly from Asia to South America over the past thirteen hours and forty-four minutes (airborne to touchdown), but to have had the privilege of doing so on board a classic Boeing 747SP in 2007.

We disembarked via an airbridge and made our way to the immigration area but not before taking a last look out at the magnificent machine that had brought us here.

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I can recommend this flight to anyone – it is an amazing experience but how much longer it will exist with the B747SP I do not know. There have been rumours of Conviasa taking over the route with an A340-200 or even Iran Air leasing the A340-200 from Conviasa and operating it on the route but so far nothing has happened. I hope the B747SP remains on this route so that other enthusiasts have the chance to take this trip too.

***

The history of this aircraft is quite simple as it was delivered new to Iran Air in May 1976 and has been part of the fleet since that time. It was withdrawn from use and stored at THR in late 2004 or early 2005 but eventually overhauled and returned to service in February 2007.

View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Martin Boschhuizen - AirTeamImages
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Jan Jørgensen



***

I hope you enjoyed this report – once again, please leave a message and let me know what you thought. Many thanks.

Look out for my next report on the following day’s flight – a Cubana IL-96-300 from CCS to HAV...
 
rineanna
Posts: 765
Joined: Fri Jan 05, 2007 6:33 am

RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 12:31 am

Excellent TR, really enjoyed reading it! What an experience to go on a 747SP! The service on Iranair looks great too.

Thanks for the TR; i'm looking forward to the Cubana one to follow.
 
roseflyer
Posts: 9606
Joined: Fri Feb 13, 2004 9:34 am

RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 12:35 am

Amazing trip report. Thanks for sharing the experience of flying on a plane that was truly incredible during its heyday, but is still an impressive machine almost three decades later.

Thanks for the pictures too. I'm notorious for not taking enough pictures on planes, but you had some great shots. Does Iranair have a first class on the SP?
If you have never designed an airplane part before, let the real designers do the work!
 
AV8AJET
Posts: 1093
Joined: Thu Sep 04, 2003 10:10 am

RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 12:41 am

Wow nice report. A few questions for you, how many classes does Iran Air have (First, Business)? Also how often does this flight operate? Is it also non-stop going back?

Thanks!
"To fly or not to fly there is no question!"
 
UK_Dispatcher
Topic Author
Posts: 2254
Joined: Fri Dec 21, 2001 8:44 pm

RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 12:42 am

Quoting RoseFlyer (Reply 2):
Does Iranair have a first class on the SP?

They have Homa Class (business) in the front of the lower deck and the rest of the aircraft including the upper deck is Economy Class.
 
semsem
Posts: 1621
Joined: Fri Jul 29, 2005 1:06 am

RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 12:45 am

Fantastic; enjoyed reading like a story. Thanks for taking the time. I noticed a screne. Do they show movies and do they have music / ear phones? How are the crew? I wonder whether most passengers are Iranian?

I flew on a Pan Am 747 SP many years ago. I think that Pan Am and Iran Air were one of the very few airlines that even flew them. I am sure that they must lose financially on this route. I heard that for a while they made a stop in Paris but this seems strange. I wonder whether those other islands were Los Roques which are near Santa Margarita.
 
UK_Dispatcher
Topic Author
Posts: 2254
Joined: Fri Dec 21, 2001 8:44 pm

RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 12:48 am

Quoting AV8AJET (Reply 3):
Also how often does this flight operate? Is it also non-stop going back?

The flight operates DAM-CCS every friday and back every saturday. The aircraft nightstops in CCS and operates back the following evening with the same crew.

Apparantly the CCS-DAM flight often has to make a tech stop en-route. It has used CDG on several occasions I believe.
 
Bofredrik
Posts: 1133
Joined: Sat Oct 30, 1999 4:17 pm

RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 1:37 am

One of the best trip reports so far this year!
 
PlaneHunter
Posts: 6512
Joined: Tue Mar 14, 2006 3:17 am

RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 1:46 am

Very enjoyable trip report about a very special flight. The food looks really decent.

Quoting UK_Dispatcher (Thread starter):

After a while boarding commenced and as with many departures at DAM the aircraft was parked on a remote stand. From the gate we could see the aircraft and make out the registration as EP-IAB. I knew it would be either this machine or EP-IAD as these were the only two (of four) in active service at the time.

Would be interesting to know what happens to EP-IAA. It's reported to be in MRO at THR.


PH
Nothing's worse than flying the same reg twice!
 
EK20
Posts: 869
Joined: Tue Mar 06, 2007 6:31 pm

RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 1:59 am

A very good read, thankyou very much.
 
jfk69
Posts: 1197
Joined: Sat Jul 01, 2006 3:04 am

RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 2:06 am

What kind of people were on this flight?? Business or casual traveler? How much would a ticket cost as well?

great TR
 
CV990
Posts: 4224
Joined: Sat May 22, 1999 3:49 am

RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 2:27 am

Hi!

I must admit that this TR is one of the most outstanding and "exotic" I've ever seen!!! I'm particularly impressed with the fact that the god old 747SP is still a great airplane for those Special Performance routes. I also feel that Iran Air have a good standard of service too. Anyway great report and I'm looking forward to see the return!
Regards and thanks for sharing that!
CV990, the Maserati of the skies!
 
B747forever
Posts: 12855
Joined: Mon May 21, 2007 9:50 pm

RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 2:35 am

Really good TR with good pics. The 747SP is a cool bird but ugly especilly on photo number 2.

Thank you for this TR looking forward for next part.
Work Hard, Fly Right
 
trintocan
Posts: 2728
Joined: Sun Apr 23, 2000 6:02 pm

RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 2:38 am

What a great report! IR seems to be quite a good airline. When one considers that this is a plane that is nearly 30 years old, IR has kept it in great condition. The service looks good too - I have not seen a meal that big onboard in a long time! It is perhaps ironic that the airline and the route operate in interesting political circumstances.

I have flown on the 747SP once before, on UA from MIA to IAD in 1993 - not a route that tests the plane to its max (it was on its way to LHR if I remember correctly). It certainly felt aged and its a/c could not cope with the extreme summer heat that year, on landing in IAD the heat penetrated the cabin badly. All the same it was good to ride on a classic plane - it was after all my first ever 747 flight.

I will add my vote to that of Bofredrik.

TrinToCan.
Hop to it, fly for life!
 
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OA260
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 2:41 am

Brilliant TR. I was lucky to fly on IR LHR to THR a few years back and it was a wonderful experience. The food also reminded me how nice the food is on IR. The crew were excellent on my flights also and even gave me a second meal!!! Nice to see ZAM ZAM again lol....

Thanks for sharing . IR is a wonderful airline. I hope they do well into the future. Their 747SP is a truly wonderful aircraft, I hope they dont take it off the THR-CCS route either.


Thanks again

OA260
 
Door5Right
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 3:03 am

Most enjoyable report. What a treat! I am so envious...
My soul is in the sky...
 
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cybergus
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 3:14 am

Excellent trip report. The pictures and the video made me feel like i was in the flight too. Great to see more reports from CCS.

Quoting UK_Dispatcher (Thread starter):
I am sure someone from Venezuela will be able to tell me something about the other much smaller island we passed over a few minutes later.

It could be Coche or La Tortuga.
LAN Excellence in Flight
 
kaitak
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 3:24 am

Superb report; really surprised they didn't mind you taking photos on the apron, particularly of an IR aircraft; thought you'd be pistol-whipped and carried away in the back of a van, never to be seen again! But glad you weren't!
 
omoo
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 4:43 am

Wow, amazing TR, very rare indeed !
Fly Air Popobawa
 
iRISH251
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 6:42 am

Thanks for the great report. I remember that in about 1976 when Iran Air first got their 747SPs, their flight IR777 was a regular sight over Ireland, on its way to New York. Later the 747-200s also appeared on the route. Previously the equipment used on this service was the 707.
 
Marambio
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 7:02 am

One word - Excellent!

Since it started, I've felt attracted by this weird Axis of Evil service, yet I still had to find someone who had actually tried it. Thanks for putting this up!  Smile

Saludos,
Marambio
Aerolíneas Argentinas - La Argentina que levanta vuelo
 
PlymSpotter
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 7:29 am

Quoting Kaitak (Reply 17):
Superb report; really surprised they didn't mind you taking photos on the apron, particularly of an IR aircraft; thought you'd be pistol-whipped and carried away in the back of a van, never to be seen again! But glad you weren't!

Contrary to popular belief - they are actually very friendly.

Another fantastic report on a very rare flight - I look forwards to the trips onboard the Il-62, an aircraft I hope to add to my list early next year!


Dan Smile
...love is just a camouflage for what resembles rage again...
 
AirlineBrat
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/v

Sat Aug 25, 2007 8:35 am

Wow, what an incredible experience on a rare trip. I really enjoyed the pictures and video. They came out really clear. The old cabin interior brings back memories of my childhood flying on all the old aircraft types UA used to operate. Many of those have since been broken up or sold to carriers in Africa, Asia and South America. The the two Boeing aircraft I have never flown on but want to are the 747SP and 707 and it looks like I will need to visit Iran to fly on those classic aircraft. Perhaps some day when the world becomes a little more peaceful, I'll get the chance. I look forward to your next installment on a Russian made aircraft none of which I have flown on either. Or should I say yet....
I'm leavin on a jet plane. Don't know when I'll be back again....
 
UAL747
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 9:05 am

WOW is all I have to say. This is one RARE and INTERESTING trip report. I hope that your images were good enough quality to submit to Airliners.net photos. You should if you haven't, because as I said before, this is a strikingly rare experience! Plus, I don't think I've seen such a comprehensive photo study on the wings of the 747SP on here before. Those flaps are out-of-this-world! I knew they were single-slotted, but I had no idea how they looked when they extended on landing! Bravo!

UAL
"Bangkok Tower, United 890 Heavy. Bangkok Tower, United 890 Heavy.....Okay, fine, we'll just turn 190 and Visual Our Way
 
antskip
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 9:23 am

Thank you for one of the most fascinating reports ever. Very good photos too! And more to come! Can't wait. I flew the B747SP a few times between New Zealand and Australia - on UA between AKL and SYD, and on QF between WLG and SYD. Very nice plane - my favourite jumbo as it was a "mini". Loved the different flaps! Thank you! A very nice way to start the weekend...
 
Aleksandar
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 3:47 pm

It is really an amazing trip report. I really enjoyed in every single word and every photo you posted.

Now, I have a question and also to repeat Samsem's question. My question is, can you make an estimate of how many passengers were on that flight and to repeat a question of a fellow A.netter. Did they show any movie during the flight?
R-E-S-P-E-C-T
 
UK_Dispatcher
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 4:46 pm

Quoting Aleksandar (Reply 25):
Now, I have a question and also to repeat Samsem's question. My question is, can you make an estimate of how many passengers were on that flight and to repeat a question of a fellow A.netter. Did they show any movie during the flight?

Around 65 passengers were on the flight - only around 17 had joined in THR.

Movies were shown but certainly nothing in English so I did not watch anything personally. Each passenger was given a headset. I do not know whether movies were in Farsi only, or Farsi and Arabic (for the Syrian pax).

Thanks for all the comments so far. I am glad so many people found it interesting, as my last report on Tu-154 flights in Iran did not generate too much interest. I'm sure the Cubana IL-96 & IL-62 ones to follow will, though  

[Edited 2007-08-25 09:51:34]
 
DALCE
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 6:53 pm

What an amazing report! This is by far one of the best TR i've read this year!!
It's great to see such a classic bird still being utilized to the max.

Thanks for sharing your great experience.

Brgds,
Joost ( DALCE )
flown: F50,F70,CR1,CR2,CR9,E75,143,AR8,AR1,733,735,736,73G,738,753,744,77W,788,319,320,321,333,AB6.
 
Chiguire
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 11:44 pm

Very nice and interesting TR !

Quoting UK_Dispatcher (Thread starter):
I later found out that it was actually Margarita Island and an airport was also visible.

The first picture is definately not Margarita. The following pictures are Margarita Island - yes !

Quoting Cybergus (Reply 16):
It could be Coche or La Tortuga.

Ir is La Tortuga.
 
Chiguire
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sat Aug 25, 2007 11:50 pm

Quoting Chiguire (Reply 28):

The first picture is definately not Margarita. T

I found it: It is Barbados !
 
ronerone
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sun Aug 26, 2007 12:56 am

Excellent TR! .. Very exotic indeed!

Regards,
Roni
Fly Roni. Aviation Journeys. Photos. Videos.
 
ba319-131
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sun Aug 26, 2007 5:35 am

Another teriffic report, many thanks!

An amazing route to take, an unusual carrier and a route which is never going to make any money!

Loved it!

Thanks

Mark
111,732,3,4,5,7,8,BBJ,741,742,743,744,752,762,763,764,772,77L,773,77W,L15,D10,30,40,AB3,AB6,A312.313,319,320,321,332,333
 
LX64A332
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sun Aug 26, 2007 6:33 am

hey i'm new to a.net,

a truly great written TR!! Can't wait for the cubana IL-96 TR!! I live in NAS, so the sight of a CU Yak-42 or AN-24 is a common one, however we dont get the IL-96, and it would be nice to compare the plane, service etc. as I've flown the NAS-HAV sector with both Yak-42 and AN-24.

regards,

LX64A332

LX: My favourite airline
64: The flight # of my most traveled route (MIA-ZRH)
A332: The wonderful a/c that operates the route!!!
SWISS remains Swiss. With Lufthansa. :D
 
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Vio
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sun Aug 26, 2007 7:08 am

Fantastic report! Wow, what's the chance of flying a 747SP from Asia to South America. I envy you. The pictures were simply amazing.

1. How did you find the service on-board?
2. Does Iran Air let you visit the flight deck during the flight? (That would've been really really cool.)
3. How much would a ticket on this flight cost?
4. I'm very curious who exactly travels on this route... Tourists? Business people? Diplomats?

I can't wait to see your next trip report.

Cheers,

Vio
Superior decisions reduce the need for superior skills.
 
Aleksandar
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sun Aug 26, 2007 4:55 pm

Quoting UK_Dispatcher (Reply 26):
Around 65 passengers were on the flight - only around 17 had joined in THR.

Thanks. So, those flights are definitely making only losses.

Quoting UK_Dispatcher (Reply 26):
as my last report on Tu-154 flights in Iran did not generate too much interest

Wait, I'll see it now  Wink
R-E-S-P-E-C-T
 
SIN7
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sun Aug 26, 2007 5:05 pm

Wow, this is truly amazing to have a pics of Iran Air and the SP.
Many know that this flight is more of a political show rather than commercial.

Quoting Vio (Reply 33):
I'm very curious who exactly travels on this route... Tourists? Business people? Diplomats?

Me too . . . Who are the passesngers? They must be very well to do or well conected.

The SP is an amazing a/c. Had the chance to fly on China Airlines SP.
The IFE is limited, but hey its the SP, I'll enjoy the outside view and all over the cabin of the a/c.
American carriers can learn a thing from Iran Air meals. It sure beats many American airlines grub on EY.
Really like the pics of the a/c landing approach just over the towns before landing.

Thanks for sharing your flight.
 
ZS-SAZ
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Mon Aug 27, 2007 1:10 am

Gee! Certainly is an interesting routing indeed! I've always found it fascinating how airlines have responded to international politics between states. Air Zimbabwe's route from HRE to PEK is another example... Don't make much sense economically, but they certainly make sense politically!

Thanks for the report! Looking forward to more exotic ones from you.
 
FLIEGER67
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Mon Aug 27, 2007 5:46 am

Hello, Ian,

thanx for the once again great read about exotic routes and airlines/airliners.

Best regards,
Markus (FLIEGER67)
Tripreporter.net
 
SFOMB67
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Mon Aug 27, 2007 2:03 pm

Regarding the flaps. Although I have never worked or flown on an SP, I have been around them in a hanger. To the best of my recollection, the flaps are actuated with rotary actuators, similar to the 767. You are truly lucky to be able to fly on such an amazing collection of great airliners, and sa, too.
Not as easy as originally perceived
 
TriStar500
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Mon Aug 27, 2007 3:24 pm

Fascinating report about an epic journey all along the axis of evil.  Wink I am enjoying your tales very much, they are such a welcome deviation from the usual "I flew AA from LGA to ORD and got a back of pretzels"-reports which are abundand here.

Already looking forward to your Cubana report - I flew the airline this spring and was actually quite surprised that they are quite alright considering that everything else on the island hardly seems to work at all.
Homer: Facts are meaningless. You could use facts to prove anything that's even remotely true!
 
UAEflyer
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Tue Aug 28, 2007 3:48 am

Quoting UK_Dispatcher (Thread starter):
Once fuelling and boarding were complete the door was closed and the crew proceeded to move all passengers into the last section of economy where we were seated in order for the aircraft to be in trim at take-off. As the aircraft was parked on a power-off stand the engines were started on stand. As the aircraft powered away from the stand the take-off flap setting was selected and I noticed that the B747SP flap arrangement is different to other B747s -- something I did not previously realise

i couldn't understand this point?
how a 100 or so passengers can change the take-off of a 747 ?

And how was the route, was it bumpy or smooth
 
UK_Dispatcher
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Tue Aug 28, 2007 8:29 am

Quoting UAEflyer (Reply 40):
i couldn't understand this point?
how a 100 or so passengers can change the take-off of a 747 ?

I guess the 140,000kg of fuel had a forward-heavy effect on the aircraft (the centre tank must have been pretty full), i.e. it shifted the centre of gravity forward of the safe limits for take-off. In order to bring the C of G back into the 'safe range' all pax were moved to the aft extreme of the aircraft. However, the aircraft was probably still near the forward limit. The stabiliser would have been set so that the airflow against it helped push the back of the aircraft down and raise the nose.
 
myk
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Wed Aug 29, 2007 3:27 am

Absolutely great trip report. Still great that we have some mad enthusiast doing such flights and bringing such awesome trip reports. Thanks and looking forward for your next reports.
 
Sabena332
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Wed Aug 29, 2007 7:33 am

Awesome report with awesome pics, definitely one of the best reports I've ever seen here on A.net! Thank you very much for posting!

Quoting OA260 (Reply 14):
Nice to see ZAM ZAM again lol....

ZamZam Coke rocks! Big grin

Quoting Door5Right (Reply 15):
I am so envious...

Same here, this is definitely an airline/aircraft/route combination I would like to fly myself!

Patrick
NZ1's mother is a disgusting crack-whore and his father is a worthless alcoholic!
 
jafa39
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Sun Sep 09, 2007 1:15 pm

Damascus to Caracas....that fair boggles the mind! I must now go and read all about the SP, a totally fascinating TR, I've read the others in this set.....all good mate!
We, the undersigned, do hereby consent.....
 
Triple Seven
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Tue Sep 18, 2007 6:16 am

Excellent report!

This TR flooded me with fond memories of my one and only flight on the SP. I was on a China Airlines Flight 006, flying from TPE to LAX back in December of 1987. It was great and I remembered watching the movie 'Project X' onboard to amusement, watching monkeys fly!
 
A340600
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Tue Sep 18, 2007 8:50 am

Nice one! Interesting insight and brilliant photos, always an interesting read from you,

Thanks,

Sam Smile
Despite the name I am a Boeing man through and through!
 
Acheron
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Mon Oct 01, 2007 6:29 am

Quoting UK_Dispatcher (Thread starter):
it is an amazing experience but how much longer it will exist with the B747SP I do not know. There have been rumours of Conviasa taking over the route with an A340-200 or even Iran Air leasing the A340-200 from Conviasa and operating it on the route but so far nothing has happened. I hope the B747SP remains on this route so that other enthusiasts have the chance to take this trip too.

Just as an update, it seems that it was replaced already since Conviasa's A340 has been certified by the local authorities.

Spotted at MAD a few ago, apparently making a stop on the THR route.



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Photo © José Luis Celada Euba - Iberian Spotters

 
lrdc9
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Mon Oct 01, 2007 8:57 am

There was an article in arways mag on the 1st class service on this very flight with the SP. Very good review but not nearly as many pics as you had!
Just say NO to scabs.
 
Flighty
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RE: Iran Air B747SP Transatlantic DAM-CCS [+pics/vids]

Tue Oct 02, 2007 7:50 am

Quoting Lrdc9 (Reply 48):
There was an article in arways mag on the 1st class service on this very flight with the SP. Very good review but not nearly as many pics as you had!

I think that one was on EP-IAD but could be wrong.

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