Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Seen 4!

I'm still cross-eyed from assembling the B737 Spotters's Guide, so this time around you get a montage of nifty shots that I ran across while looking for 737s.

A recent commenter asked about Lockheed Tristars, which evoked some memories. The last regular Tristar visitor at LAX was the one flown by the Saudi Arabian Royal Flight. This B772 replaced that aircraft. Seen here rolling out after landing on Runway 25 Right.

Do they eat doughnuts in Mexico?
Apparently Krispy Kreme hopes so . . .

Another view of a SuperTug - It's a big piece of equipment

Speaking of big, check out this dirt pile where the American Eagle terminal used to be. This is part of the on-going work on the west side of the Tom Bradley International Terminal. I think I've mentioned this project before: Taxiway Quebec was permanently closed and Taxiway Sierra is going to be moved west of its present location to accommodate the addition of gates to the west side of the TBIT. The American Eagle terminal was moved to the former Skywest ramp adjacent to the Delta and United maintenance ramps - a location that most controllers find rather inconvenient compared to the old, I might ad. Especially because now the Skywest aircraft are in the same terminals as the mainline United and Continental jets. Great move for the passengers, I concede, but operationally it doesn't help the taxiway congestion around the south-side terminals. Okay, rant over. You may now resume your normally-scheduled blog.

There aren't many aircraft actually based at LAX, and this is one of them - one of four US Coast Guard Dolphin helicopters based here, this example in special anniversary paint. I got a ride in this helicopter a year ago, and it is freakin' LOUD inside, even with a helmet and ear plugs.

The same helicopter is in this shot, too - look above the construction area that will become the next piece of Taxiway Delta

Coast Guard Air Station Los Angeles is hidden from the tower by the big hangar I've shown you before where Qantas services their aircraft; here you see the smallest and largest aircraft regularly operated at LAX. The USCG has 102 of these Dolphin helicopters, and the entire fleet together weighs less than that Airbus 380!

This is the first cargo B777 I've seen at LAX

Qantas group shot: One of each of the aircraft types that Qantas currently brings into LAX.
Left to right: A330-200; B747-400; A380.

Another group shot, this one a family photo: US Airways uses most of the A320 models; here we see (again left to right) an A321, A320, and A319. Air Canada, Lacsa, and Taca also bring in all three of these models. Meanwhile Mexicana shows up with A320s, A319s, and the even-smaller A318s. Expect to see this photo again if I ever succumb to the temptation to do an Airbus 320-series spotter's guide (not happening anytime soon!)

The LA Country Sheriff's Department stopped by the other day. I've ridden in one of their AStars, and they're a much nicer ride than the Coastie's Dolphins.

Oh no! Not another B737! I should've retroactively added this to part 3 of the spotter's guide, but I'm still burned out from looking at that one (maybe I'll do it some day in the future). Miami Air (callsign: Biscayne) has B737-800's like this one as well as a couple of B737-400's, one of which should have appeared in an earlier segment (but looking back, I see that it didn't, so maybe there will be a revision to the revision . . . ) Miami Air flights into LAX are charters, and so they don't park at the terminals, meaning that all the shots I have of them are long-range and kinda fuzzy.

Another helo shot, this one a civilian R44. Robinson helicopters are built just a few miles south of LAX in Torrance, California, and we see a lot of them. I didn't realize it at the time, but I was taking a picture of him, taking a picture of me . . .

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