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Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Thu Jul 02, 2020 7:53 pm
by wjcandee
According to the Wall Street Journal, the Air Bridge project ended June 30.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Fri Jul 03, 2020 9:37 pm
by darloscott
wjcandee wrote:
Just keeping up with Western Global's apparently-diminishing ability to participate in the Asian cargo scene and Air Bridge flights due to apparent equipment issues and the capabilities of its in-house SHV MRO facility...

I notice that N415JN, which has been on the ground at SDF since 6/27/20 (i.e. 4 days), is being ferried to OSC. Kalitta used to do heavy maintenance for WGN before they opened their own shop in SHV; maybe this is a recognition that their organic maintenance operation isn't keeping up with the needs of a high-tempo operation and they need some experienced help. To make that decision doubtless required some humility and resulted in some bruised egos, but if that's the direction they're now taking, BRAVO for looking the mirror and realizing that safety and the operation come first.

Today's Scorecard:

344KD Flying Asia (at ICN)
356KD ORD for 3 days
411SN Flying Military
412SN SHV for 5 days
415JN SDF for 4 days, about to ferry to OSC
512JN Flying Asia (was at RSW 6/18-27)
513SN Flying ORD-AMS-ORD (lower tempo)
542KD SDF for 6 days
543JN ANC for 3 days (on the way to Asia from YMX)
545JN Flying Asia (was at SDF 6/13-28 -- 15 days)
546JN SHV for heavy work since 5/23
581JN Flying (was at RSW 6/26-30 for successful quick check)
799JN Flying MIA-BRU (was at RSW 6/26-7/1 for successful quick check)

So 6 out of 11 MD11s flying today.
So 1 out of 2 747s flying today.

744F N497MC came to SHV from MZJ on 4/22, presumably to be activated. Still at SHV.
MD11 N435KD came to SHV from MHV on 5/3, presumably to be activated. Still at SHV.


N799JN seems to be employed short term by DHL covering one of the UK 767s on BRU-MIA. GDHLF flew to BUD today presumably for maintenance work, having come off MIA 922/923 on Monday.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Fri Jul 03, 2020 9:44 pm
by wjcandee
darloscott wrote:

N799JN seems to be employed short term by DHL covering one of the UK 767s on BRU-MIA. GDHLF flew to BUD today presumably for maintenance work, having come off MIA 922/923 on Monday.


Yes. I saw that. I was thinking that Amerijet briefly did or was going to do that flight, but they don't have the aircraft to do it, presently. 799JN has been one of the more-reliable of the bunch recently, so hopefully it goes well for them.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Fri Jul 03, 2020 11:14 pm
by darloscott
wjcandee wrote:
darloscott wrote:

N799JN seems to be employed short term by DHL covering one of the UK 767s on BRU-MIA. GDHLF flew to BUD today presumably for maintenance work, having come off MIA 922/923 on Monday.


Yes. I saw that. I was thinking that Amerijet briefly did or was going to do that flight, but they don't have the aircraft to do it, presently. 799JN has been one of the more-reliable of the bunch recently, so hopefully it goes well for them.

I think they briefly did before DHL did a 3 way swap with DHK 763 taking BRU-MIA, AJT 763 moving to CVG-EMA and CJT 763 getting CVG-BRU

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Sat Jul 04, 2020 5:25 am
by Harvestman
I've noticed a couple of AirBridgeCargo 747s coming in on DHL's second-shift ops at CVG. VQ-BRJ seems to be the aircraft of choice. HKG-ANC-CVG-LEJ on Tuesday 6/30 and HKG-ANC-CVG-BRU on Thursday 7/2.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Sat Jul 04, 2020 8:18 am
by wjcandee
Harvestman wrote:
I've noticed a couple of AirBridgeCargo 747s coming in on DHL's second-shift ops at CVG. VQ-BRJ seems to be the aircraft of choice. HKG-ANC-CVG-LEJ on Tuesday 6/30 and HKG-ANC-CVG-BRU on Thursday 7/2.


Yeah, someone (maybe you?) pointed out to me that Western Global was doing the Asia part of that from June 11 to June 21 with 744BCF N344KD until it had to go for maintenance at SHV. So CVG-ANC-HKG-ANC-CVG. Clearly DHL needed extra lift on that route. I wonder if Air Bridge has to start or end up in Europe if its gonna unload in the US. I think you can go EU-US-Somewhere and return, but I don't think a non-US carrier can go from a non-home country (or zone) to the US and return. But there are special rules if you transit ANC as well, so I'm not sure, and it's too late to look it up. (E.g. Cargojet can go Canada-US-Mexico, but can't go Mexico-US-Mexico.)

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Sat Jul 04, 2020 6:55 pm
by wjcandee
Harvestman: I just noticed that Western Global used an MD11 (N543JN) to do ANC-HKG-ICN-ANC-CVG, arriving today.

And National is coming in behind it today with 744 N919CA, HKG-ANC-CVG. So DHL is throwing whatever it can get at that lane, it looks like. The WGN aircraft had been stuck in ANC for 4 days on its way to HKG, so maybe the original plan was for staggered flights, which got compressed when N543JN broke at ANC.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Sat Jul 04, 2020 10:45 pm
by Mystic
Are the PC and TK flights to Moscow cargo flights or are they carrying passengers? I know Belarus and Ukraine are carrying passengers to Turkey but what about Moscow?

How much FDX / UPS cargo is Covid related ?

Posted: Sun Jul 12, 2020 1:19 pm
by Max Q
Pure cargo operators and passenger airlines are transporting a substantial amount of PPE and other CV19 related items


I imagine it’s quite a strain for the exclusive cargo carriers to accommodate this in addition to their normal contracts


Anyone know what sort of percentage this amounts to now for FDX / UPS and other similar companies, and is it subsiding or fairly constant?

DL 3324 ATL-BOM....How did I miss this?

Posted: Tue Jul 14, 2020 1:47 am
by cha747
Hello All,

I live near PHL and when I look into the sky I notice when planes "don't belong." So I fired-up FR24 AR to find this gem soaring over Philly area. Are these one-off flights? Part of the repatriation scheme?

Re: DL 3324 ATL-BOM....How did I miss this?

Posted: Tue Jul 14, 2020 1:59 am
by PSU.DTW.SCE
That is in the flight number range used for cargo only flights.

Re: DL 3324 ATL-BOM....How did I miss this?

Posted: Tue Jul 14, 2020 3:20 am
by DTWLAX
Cargo flight. DL has done a few of these ATL-BOM flights since April.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Fri Jul 17, 2020 7:23 pm
by SQ22
Today in the morning I noticed in FRA that there was not only the usual SQ25/SQ26 A359 sitting at a finger but another SQ A359 parked in the are which is being used for remote boarding. When I returned to FRA in the evening it was still there. I think it is highly unlikely that it is being used for cargo and the JFK leg is not operating as far as I know. Anyone in the know?

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Tue Jul 28, 2020 10:14 am
by QF744ER
Things must be looking up at National as they ferried N756CA MZJ-SAT for paint on the 27/7

Ex SQ/CX and KA B744BCF, quite remarkable as records show this frame has been stored since 04/2013, most recent photos of it show it engineless too.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Tue Jul 28, 2020 4:11 pm
by wjcandee
QF744ER wrote:
Things must be looking up at National as they ferried N756CA MZJ-SAT for paint on the 27/7

Ex SQ/CX and KA B744BCF, quite remarkable as records show this frame has been stored since 04/2013, most recent photos of it show it engineless too.


Maybe they thought that they would do it earlier, but figured that Western Global was already putting an extra 744 into the mix, bringing it to SHV three months ago for restoration for service.

Then they realized that it will be 2050 by the time the Western Global frame makes it out of SHV and into service. :lol:

National seems always to use quality vendors. N952CA is right now in TPE, presumably in an HMV at EGAT.

It's possible, I think, that N756CA is getting more than just paint at SAT. But you may have more insight than I.

Regardless, good for them.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:00 am
by wjcandee
So here's an interesting one.

ATI has been flying HKG-GUM-SYD-HKG for a while for DHL, using N395CM.

Today, she goes HKG-GUM-SYD. So far so good. But instead of flying SYD-HKG, she's flying SYD-GUM. An additional regular stop? Something else? Interesting.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Wed Jul 29, 2020 1:17 am
by wjcandee
And you know it has been such fun watching Western Global get busy with Covid-19 opportunities. Apparently the folks that do the actual work are nice people.

But, Man, it's a thrill a minute to see whether a flight that stops at ANC is going to be there for 3 hours or 3 days, whether a regular route is going to stop dead for days because the aircraft is AOG, whether an aircraft that goes into SHV for a low-level check is going to come out within months. The stuff seems to break ever-so-much-more-often than any other carrier I have followed. They have so much opportunity, and so little reliability.

But I was starting to criticize myself for my negativity when I saw that at least a couple of routes they got from DHL are actually being run reliably. Like the nightly MIA-BRU-MIA turn. A nice run for them. Been operating forever with N799JN. And I guess because at each end there's enough time to apply more speed tape, the thing was doing a pretty-reliable job.

But tonight -- air return to MIA. Oh, well. At least there is obviously no pressure to fly when the airplane is broken. That's a good, safe thing.

Meanwhile, another route they were doing -- LAX-HKG -- was using in part N512JN. Until it did a little loop around HKG after departure six days ago, and has been there ever since. A very-different business plan, for sure.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Wed Jul 29, 2020 5:53 am
by wjcandee
And indeed, given that 412SN has been AOG at ANC for basically 3 days, it looks like Western Global sent 513SN to ANC from ORD to pick up the cargo and bring it to LAX, where 412SN had been heading from HKG when it crapped out at its stop in ANC. So, after 3 days, the airline manages to bring in another plane to get the cargo and bring it to where I was air-shipping it to. Can't make me, if I'm a customer, too happy.

And this again raises questions about WGN's shop in SHV, and whether anybody there has a clue how to keep a fleet of MD11s running reliably.

412SN flew to SHV for maint on 6/26. It stayed there until 7/22. It then did a couple of test flights and departed for ANC and HKG on 7/24. It arrived HKG, picked up a load, flew to ICN to change crews, and took off for ANC. Where it stays. Right out of a month of maintenance and testing. Makes one overseas journey and doesn't even make it the full round-trip. That's just sad. And this paradigm seems to be a repetitive one. (I get that that can happen once in a blue moon, but this isn't once in a blue moon.)

Do we really think that if these aircraft were still at Lufthansa, they would perform like this? Or, what do we think would happen if ATSG's in-house maintenance arm AMES could only keep 50 percent of the ATSG fleet flyable at any one time? Would the head of maintenance still have a job? ATSG is still flying 767 Line Number 6 (SIX!!) delivered in 1983. AMES has the skills and tribal knowledge to keep this oldest-767-flying-in-the-world flying reliably. Notwithstanding its 43,000 (you got that right) cycles. AMES is now a center of excellence for 767s, which is why Atlas, Delta and United send their 767s there for heavy maintenance, and UPS has AMES installing the large flat-panel display system. Western Global could have had the same thing for MD11s in SHV, but they just can't seem to get it together. It seems they have lost an incalculable amount of potential business during Covid, and nothing seems to change. What would have happened if they had, say, VT Aero doing all their maintenance, induction, AOG, etc.? Like AMES does for Frontier's Airbii in TPA. Yeah, it would probably cost more, but what kind of reliability benefit would they have seen when their aircraft were in demand like never before. They had a good plan to staff their flights light and run a high volume to the Pacific, but their equipment wasn't ready for prime time, it seems. And, like I say, they are apparently nice people, so it's a shame.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Wed Jul 29, 2020 8:42 am
by wjcandee
I'm sorry, did I say "half" of the WGN MD11s were broken? My mistake. Seven (7) and maybe 8 of the 11 are either broken or in maint. So what's that? 64 percent. Yeah, more than half.

412SN aog at ANC since 7/26
415JN maint at OSC since 7/1
512JN aog HKG since 7/21
546JN maint at SHV since 5/23
581JN maint at RSW since 7/27
799JN air return MIA 7/28
545JN maint SHV 7/28

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Fri Aug 07, 2020 11:30 pm
by wjcandee
So ABX has been given a great route by DHL, which requires 2 aircraft to fly on the daily-ish schedule. CVG-ORD-EMA-CGN-EMA-ORD-CVG. It started off well, but I am frankly surprised by the number of turnbacks and periods of AOG that ABX is having. Another air return this morning to ORD, and the aircraft is still there. These aren't crap ancient multi-owner aircraft, they're pretty-recent conversions that aren't exactly being flown to death. The one that turned back this morning, N371CM, is a 26-year-old ex-Qantas aircraft that was converted like 4 years ago, when it would have undergone an HMV concurrently. And ATSG takes good care of their aircraft, so it's a bit of a mystery as to what the problem is. I know that gremlins come and go, but it's unfortunate.

UPDATE: It was a bird strike on the runway; they leveled at 4000 to check it out, then decided to return to ORD. Since the aircraft is still there, presumably something problematic was found. Just bad luck.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Sat Aug 08, 2020 7:44 pm
by andrew1996
What is happening with air mail (non-couriers) are they also loaded onto these special cargo flights too ? Is the backlog in air mail because they are rarely allocated spots on these cargo flights? Do air mail also use dedicated cargo airlines like Fedex, Atlas etc?

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Sat Aug 08, 2020 8:17 pm
by concordeforever
British Airways are still flying plenty of mail on their cargo only US services using passenger aircraft, especially on Sundays and Mondays.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Sun Aug 09, 2020 4:57 pm
by andrew1996
Are air mail ussually bulk loaded in like bags or are they placed into pallets and containers? Do airlines make money from air mail especially right now when mailing rates haven’t gone up?

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Sun Aug 09, 2020 5:43 pm
by mxaxai
LH: Using Passenger Planes as Freighters No Longer Worth It
"Even now the prices in the market are higher than they were before, simply because there is so little capacity," said Gerber. Despite higher prices, the business is not a sure-fire success: "We have a cost apparatus for 100 percent of the capacity, but only fly a little more than 60 percent with very good utilization of our cargo holds."

The manager reported that the excessive demand for medical equipment was over. "What is needed now goes back on the ship. The use of passenger planes as freighters ... is no longer worthwhile for us."

"Of course we do short-time work* where the volume is missing," said Gerber, describing the situation. "In Munich there is a pure belly [passenger] fleet, but there is currently little flying, so there is a lot of short-time work there. All the freighters fly in Frankfurt ... In China business is booming, while individual stations in the USA are not served at all. If the bellys [of regular passenger flights] come back step by step, we will also reduce short-time work."

*Short-time work: ‘public programmes that allow firms experiencing economic difficulties to temporarily reduce the hours worked while providing their employees with income support from the State for the hours not worked' https://www.eurofound.europa.eu/observa ... -time-work

https://www.airliners.de/lufthansa-cargo/56752 [German]

He also talks about how they need to adapt quickly to shifting demand. They're cautiously optimistic for dedicated freighter demand for the rest of 2020 but can't give a long term prediction.
Also, LH is forced to decline requests for shipping to certain destinations that would usually see lots of belly cargo demand but have lost passenger service, yet don't have the yield or volume for proper cargo service either.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Sun Aug 09, 2020 8:04 pm
by andrew1996
mxaxai wrote:
LH: Using Passenger Planes as Freighters No Longer Worth It
"Even now the prices in the market are higher than they were before, simply because there is so little capacity," said Gerber. Despite higher prices, the business is not a sure-fire success: "We have a cost apparatus for 100 percent of the capacity, but only fly a little more than 60 percent with very good utilization of our cargo holds."

The manager reported that the excessive demand for medical equipment was over. "What is needed now goes back on the ship. The use of passenger planes as freighters ... is no longer worthwhile for us."

"Of course we do short-time work* where the volume is missing," said Gerber, describing the situation. "In Munich there is a pure belly [passenger] fleet, but there is currently little flying, so there is a lot of short-time work there. All the freighters fly in Frankfurt ... In China business is booming, while individual stations in the USA are not served at all. If the bellys [of regular passenger flights] come back step by step, we will also reduce short-time work."

*Short-time work: ‘public programmes that allow firms experiencing economic difficulties to temporarily reduce the hours worked while providing their employees with income support from the State for the hours not worked' https://www.eurofound.europa.eu/observa ... -time-work

https://www.airliners.de/lufthansa-cargo/56752 [German]

He also talks about how they need to adapt quickly to shifting demand. They're cautiously optimistic for dedicated freighter demand for the rest of 2020 but can't give a long term prediction.
Also, LH is forced to decline requests for shipping to certain destinations that would usually see lots of belly cargo demand but have lost passenger service, yet don't have the yield or volume for proper cargo service either.


Aside from the A359 (maybe the A330?), LH unlike other airlines do not have passenger planes that have large belly capacity and fuel efficient like the 77W or 789 etc

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Mon Aug 17, 2020 5:15 am
by wjcandee
So National Airlines has been flying its aircraft hard during the Air Bridge period and now as extra lift in a still-strong cargo market. Their crews have been working hard (as they have a reputation for always doing), and they took a lot of pride in those long duty days to bring in PPE from China. They are still flying largely back and forth to Asia, sometimes for DHL. Back on June 28 (so about 7 weeks ago), they flew N952CA (744BCF) to EGAT in Taiwan for a heavy check. So only N919CA (744BCF) has been running since then. They pulled N756CA from Marana and sent it to SAT three weeks ago (7/27/20), presumably to be re-readied for service, and it's still there.

Now N919CA, their only other flying 747, is on its way, too, to SAT. Quite possible that this is just a light check -- it was at SAT for 5 days just about 2 months ago -- but it's unfortunate that they are now without a flyable 747 aircraft at an inopportune time. OTOH, I guess this will prepare them well for upcoming peak season.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Mon Aug 17, 2020 8:47 am
by sunking737
Check out N567CA , Their only pax 757, running it just as hard as the 747...With DOD charters

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Mon Aug 17, 2020 8:55 am
by concordeforever
andrew1996 wrote:
Are air mail ussually bulk loaded in like bags or are they placed into pallets and containers? Do airlines make money from air mail especially right now when mailing rates haven’t gone up?


For a while mail bags were being loose flown in overhead bins, certainly on some JFK flights. Now seems to be all back to pallets and containers, still plenty of mail for the US, China, and even today two pallets for Delhi.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Wed Aug 19, 2020 9:13 pm
by wjcandee
So it's interesting to see that N742AX, a CAM lease return that is being refurbished for somebody (the word on here was for ABX), is now flying tomorrow from TPA, where it was being worked on, to ILN, where I guess it will be inspected/worked-on some more. Unlike N773AX, which has been sitting at TPA for over a year, this 767-200 seems actively to be readied for service.

And N308CM, which will be going to UPS, is out of paint at CWF and back at ILN. It will be interesting to see when UPS comes to pick it up.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Thu Aug 20, 2020 11:46 am
by QF744ER
wjcandee wrote:
So National Airlines has been flying its aircraft hard during the Air Bridge period and now as extra lift in a still-strong cargo market. Their crews have been working hard (as they have a reputation for always doing), and they took a lot of pride in those long duty days to bring in PPE from China. They are still flying largely back and forth to Asia, sometimes for DHL. Back on June 28 (so about 7 weeks ago), they flew N952CA (744BCF) to EGAT in Taiwan for a heavy check. So only N919CA (744BCF) has been running since then. They pulled N756CA from Marana and sent it to SAT three weeks ago (7/27/20), presumably to be re-readied for service, and it's still there.

Now N919CA, their only other flying 747, is on its way, too, to SAT. Quite possible that this is just a light check -- it was at SAT for 5 days just about 2 months ago -- but it's unfortunate that they are now without a flyable 747 aircraft at an inopportune time. OTOH, I guess this will prepare them well for upcoming peak season.


Looks like National are putting another ex KA B744BCF into the skies with N702CA being ferried into SAT this week.

Also much respect wjcandee, your posts in this thread and others are invaluable ✌️

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Thu Aug 20, 2020 8:27 pm
by wjcandee
QF744ER: Aw, shucks. Thank you! Makes all this worthwhile. And GOOD CATCH!!

FWIW, SkyLease got N903AR back from a heavy check at SBD yesterday morning, and it has already flown 14 hours nonstop to China, picked up its load in 4 hours, and flown 8.5 hours back to ANC. All with one heavy crew, I assume, because nobody is staging crews in China right now. The factory-Fs, which these are, often have some decent private bunkrooms on the top deck; I don't know about the Skylease ones, so it's doable. With only two aircraft, and enough cargo opportunities to keep them moving as much as possible, SkyLease is paying for heavy crews to maximize aircraft productivity. (On the same route, Western Global will change crews at ICN and maybe ANC, to keep each leg to two pilots. So their aircraft will go CONUS-(ANC)-ICN-China-(ICN)-ANC-CONUS, adding stops and saving on tankered fuel and pilot pay, but sacrificing revenue. We will never know, but it will be interesting to see which business plan works better in the long run. Each may be best for that particular carrier's situation. Atlas does something similar to WGN. Obviously contract work rules enter into this kind of work in a big way.)

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Thu Aug 20, 2020 9:31 pm
by wjcandee
And it seems like VT San Antonio is pushing hard for its customer National. It turned N919CA's light check around in 4 days, and it should be off to ANC later this afternoon.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Fri Aug 21, 2020 12:23 am
by sunking737
wjcandee wrote:
And it seems like VT San Antonio is pushing hard for its customer National. It turned N919CA's light check around in 4 days, and it should be off to ANC later this afternoon.


Holy crap superman. I thought a 14 day turn on a SY Amazon was fast

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Fri Aug 21, 2020 10:57 pm
by wjcandee
Well, perhaps I celebrated too soon...N919CA, after having a light check at SAT, flew out of there headed for ANC, and made it there, then sat for 13 hours and headed for Hong Kong.

Now it has turned around about 3 hours into its flight to HKG and is on its way back to ANC.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Sat Aug 22, 2020 2:55 am
by zkojq
wjcandee wrote:


QF744ER wrote:
Also much respect wjcandee, your posts in this thread and others are invaluable ✌️


+1 I've also really enjoyed reading your comments here as well as you're other posts on cargo ops, wjcandee.

It's indeed sad to see so many AOG events for WGN. Hopefully they can turn this around.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Sat Aug 22, 2020 5:12 am
by wjcandee
zkojq wrote:
wjcandee wrote:


QF744ER wrote:
Also much respect wjcandee, your posts in this thread and others are invaluable ✌️


+1 I've also really enjoyed reading your comments here as well as you're other posts on cargo ops, wjcandee.

It's indeed sad to see so many AOG events for WGN. Hopefully they can turn this around.


Thank you, zkojq!! I truly appreciate the kind words.

As to WGN, their RSW operation seems to be able to turn around light checks expeditiously; it's SHV that's the Black Hole. I was a little-encouraged when I saw them send 415JN off to Kalitta at OSC for a heavy-check about 7 weeks ago. At least that seemed to be a recognition that their main maintenance facility isn't getting it done. About 4 months ago, they brought a 747 and an MD11 there out of the desert, presumably to ready for service and to capitalize on the opportunities, but those two are still there. And 546JN went in 3 months ago for a check, and is still there.

But right now, as we speak, they only have 3 aircraft from the active fleet of 13 presently down for maintenance. That's about the best they have had it for months, I think. It's the aforementioned 546JN and one of the two active 747s, N356KD, both at SHV. Hopefully, the latter is just in for a light check. And then there's 415JN at OSC. (And the two at SHV that are being readied for return to service.) For them, that's pretty-darn-good. Now there are in fact a couple of aircraft lingering in places a little-longer than I would expect, so this is probably an optimistic number. But that sure beats the other day, when 7 or more of the active 13 were in planned maintenance or just plain broken, some in the middle of trips. I do hope they can get it together. And one positive thing to say is that we haven't seen any really-significant maintenance errors coming out of their shop. (Can't say that for even FedEx recently, although obviously that's a completely different scale, but I think we're gonna find that the left-gear-up emergency landing at LAX the other day was a maintenance screwup, akin to one that happened to a TWA 767 decades ago, and for that particular mistake to be made, it's a maintenance management problem as well, because to anybody who knows what the finished project is supposed to look like after the 767's brakes are changed, it should be completely-obvious to the supervisor/inspector that it hasn't been done right. Forgetting to reinstall a bolt or nut, or not sliding the pin all the way in to the assembly, are easy mistakes for humans to make, but other humans are being paid to catch it by inspecting their work, and apparently they didn't. When a quality-of-work failure followed by an inspection failure rears its head, rarely does it turn out to be a one-off thing; it usually reveals sloppy practices in one location that have just bitten one of the perpetrators. )

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Mon Aug 24, 2020 7:51 am
by FlyingHonu001
LX-VCF sporting an interesting livery by Cargolux during these times...
Source: https://insideflyer.com/2020/08/cargolu ... 47-livery/

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Mon Aug 24, 2020 10:41 pm
by USAirKid
Something I came across while reading up on the 747-400LCF - It did a run of masks to Utah back on July 1.

https://www.ksl.com/article/46771987/49 ... s-teachers

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Mon Aug 24, 2020 10:50 pm
by wjcandee
USAirKid: Yeah, I saw that. So interesting. I guess masks don't mind flying unpressurized at FL350, and there is certainly a lot of room in the thing.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Mon Aug 24, 2020 11:38 pm
by wjcandee
So for those who are following my reports on the smaller-fleet 747 and MD11 operators in the time of Covid, I noticed one thing today.

I had lauded VT Aero in SAT for getting National's N919CA turned around and back in service rapidly the other day, as it was the only aircraft they had that wasn't in heavier maintenance.

After maintenance, 919CA flew SAT-ANC, and then took off from ANC for Hong Kong. But it then turned around about 3 hours into the flight, landed back at ANC, and stayed at ANC for 3 days. Now it is on its way to SBD under a ferry flight number. So presumably to Unical rather than back to VT Aero. (Of course, I suppose that the load in HKG could have flown on another carrier while the thing was AOG in ANC, and it's ferrying to SBD to pick up something going Westbound. Yeah, but probably not.) Anyway, we shall see what transpires.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Tue Aug 25, 2020 8:12 am
by mxaxai
Scoot has removed the seats from one of their A320 and are bulk loading both the main and lower deck with cargo.
https://twitter.com/flyscoot/status/129 ... 48737?s=20
https://www.straitstimes.com/singapore/ ... deliveries
The modifications on the A-320 plane took four days to complete and to put in place safety precautions , such as installing placards to demarcate areas where cargo can be placed and adding fire extinguishers.

At least two pilots and two cabin crew will be on board for flights to ensure smooth and safe operations and to manage any inflight emergencies.

Another A-320 is scheduled to undergo similar modification this week.

Image

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Tue Aug 25, 2020 4:42 pm
by wjcandee
mxaxai wrote:
Scoot has removed the seats from one of their A320 and are bulk loading both the main and lower deck with cargo.


You know, it just seems like there is a substantial possibility of some misloading or mis-securing of the main deck cargo causing a W&B issue on these transformed aircraft. Maybe not to the point of having a very bad day, but certainly potentially a challenging one. I know that everyone is a professional and this is all "perfectly safe", but it seems like we're creating a whole new system and expecting a whole bunch of newly-trained people to get it right every time. What are the "cabin crew" going to do? Run and push the pallets back into position? They're there to "ensure safety"? Really? Or they're there to keep the FA union from striking?

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Tue Aug 25, 2020 7:02 pm
by mxaxai
wjcandee wrote:
mxaxai wrote:
Scoot has removed the seats from one of their A320 and are bulk loading both the main and lower deck with cargo.


You know, it just seems like there is a substantial possibility of some misloading or mis-securing of the main deck cargo causing a W&B issue on these transformed aircraft. Maybe not to the point of having a very bad day, but certainly potentially a challenging one. I know that everyone is a professional and this is all "perfectly safe", but it seems like we're creating a whole new system and expecting a whole bunch of newly-trained people to get it right every time.

What are the "cabin crew" going to do? Run and push the pallets back into position? They're there to "ensure safety"? Really? Or they're there to keep the FA union from striking?

I think load shifts aren't that big of a problem. Most of these items are low density, probably 10-20 kg per box. Bulk loading in general isn't that unsual anyway, many A320 and 737 carriers carry similar cargo on regular flights in the hold. The only novelty is that they're additionally using the main floor.

Cabin crew are probably just organic fire detection and suppression systems. Somebody has to operate the extra fire extinguishers that these flights got equipped with.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Tue Aug 25, 2020 7:27 pm
by wjcandee
mxaxai: Thanks. You're probably right. I was just looking at what seems to be rolls of paper or carpet there on the right, and I remember how heavy and dense that stuff is. Similar textiles (denim, as I recall) caused a bad day with that Fine Air flight years ago. That wasn't a cargo-shifting accident per se but rather an improper-loading/CG accident.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Sat Aug 29, 2020 12:09 pm
by QF744ER
wjcandee wrote:
So for those who are following my reports on the smaller-fleet 747 and MD11 operators in the time of Covid, I noticed one thing today.

I had lauded VT Aero in SAT for getting National's N919CA turned around and back in service rapidly the other day, as it was the only aircraft they had that wasn't in heavier maintenance.

After maintenance, 919CA flew SAT-ANC, and then took off from ANC for Hong Kong. But it then turned around about 3 hours into the flight, landed back at ANC, and stayed at ANC for 3 days. Now it is on its way to SBD under a ferry flight number. So presumably to Unical rather than back to VT Aero. (Of course, I suppose that the load in HKG could have flown on another carrier while the thing was AOG in ANC, and it's ferrying to SBD to pick up something going Westbound. Yeah, but probably not.) Anyway, we shall see what transpires.


919CA is back out grinding her gears, she’s been out in the UAE/Afghanistan no doubt undertaking DOD/Military contracts.

It’s absolutely fascinating watching her worldwide movements on FR24.

Interestingly 952CA is listed as parked 06/2020 according to a well known air fleet reference site.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Sat Aug 29, 2020 2:49 pm
by frmrCapCadet
Wouldn't the passenger deck load have to max out at 100kg time 3 per pitch, on each side, and the seat tracks are engineered for that load?

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Sat Aug 29, 2020 4:05 pm
by wjcandee
QF744ER wrote:
Interestingly 952CA is listed as parked 06/2020 according to a well known air fleet reference site.


That is indeed interesting! I assumed that if it was going to TPE, it would be for a heavy check. It's about time for it to come out pretty-soon if indeed EGAT is doing an HMV.

I did a little research on the site that you mentioned, and here's what they say about the "parked" classification: "The 'Parked' status corresponds to planes which have not flown for 20 days but of which we have no information that they have left the operator's fleet." So an HMV on a 747 might trigger this classification.

Nevertheless, it is interesting because we don't know if they looked into it further.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Sat Aug 29, 2020 4:09 pm
by wjcandee
QF744ER wrote:
It’s absolutely fascinating watching her worldwide movements on FR24.


Totally agree! It's probably safe to think that most Americans don't really realize all the places in the world that her military is operating -- often in conjunction with allies -- and what it takes to keep them well-supported.

If you want to see a passenger 757 that has an interesting, busy, globe-trotting life, take a look at 567CA. They're trying to get her some help with their "new" A330 N819CA, but it's taking a while.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Mon Aug 31, 2020 3:26 pm
by wjcandee
National Airlines has had N952CA at TPE for a heavy check since June 27, 2020 (so just over 2 months). Today, it took a 3-hour test flight TPE-TPE (including a go-around) under a National callsign (NCR9952), so it looks like maybe it's almost ready to return to service. Given that that effectively doubles National's cargo lift capability, I'm sure that it will be welcomed back.

This Peak is going to be interesting, particularly if any vaccines are even partially approved during the period, so I'm sure every cargo operator wants their aircraft to be well-available during those months.

Re: COVID-19 Cargo Discussion Thread (Cargo Operators and Passenger Airlines Operating Cargo Only Flights)

Posted: Mon Aug 31, 2020 3:52 pm
by jreeves96
Atlas has started LAX-ICN-KHN-ANC-LAX flights. Runs until at least October. Last time we had flights to a random Chinese airport it was masks for Covid. Can't find the CAM message to determine what it is, but possibly more Covid runs for them.