World Tour: Flying the “Table Saw” – Part 2

by Guest Writer Jim “Woxof” Hart

Jim continues his around the world flight in the Tupolev Tu-114


Part IV: The Tu-114 in the Far East

Route segments: VIDP-ZBAA-UHHH-UHWW-RJTT

Vladivostok and Khabarovsk were Aeroflot destinations. In fact, Khabarovsk was the last city the Tu-114 was still flying to just before it was retired. Beijing (or, since we’re talking about history here, do I have to call it Peking?) had 114s as frequent visitors back during the 60s and 70s. And Haneda was the Japanese origin of the only 114 service not operated exclusively by Aeroflot. For a time JAL had a turn-key lease on some 114s for the Moscow-Tokyo route.

My route passed about 30 miles south of Mount Everest. I tried to get a snap, but the weather refused to cooperate. The mountain is inside that big cloud in the background.

Mount Everest is behind the clouds.

Mount Everest is behind the clouds.

Map4Russia uses its own system of altitude definition called the Metric Leveling System. Here in the US, we have two altitude reference areas with 18,000 feet as the cut-off. We call this the transition altitude, with flight by reference to MSL below and the standard pressure area above. In Russia, they have two cut-offs, the transition altitude and the transition level. Below the transition altitude, they fly by reference to AGL. Between the the transition altitude and the transition level they use MSL, but horizontal flight in the “between” area is prohibited. Above the transition level, it’s the standard pressure area. Following so far?

These transition altitudes and levels aren’t standard nationwide, like they are here. They change in each FIR. You have to have charts to find out what they are. And while you can obtain the altimeter setting for MSL from METARs, the controllers assign altitudes below the transition altitude in AGL. You have to know how to do the math to convert the setting so you can read AGL on your altimeter. (In real life the altimeter setting they’d give you over the radio would produce AGL.) Oh, and if that’s not confusing enough, controllers assign altitudes in meters, not feet. Be sure to keep your conversion table handy because the flight levels aren’t on even numbers. For example, the best valid eastbound flight level for the 114 is Flight Level 101 meters (very close to 33,100 feet).

I used to think the ICAO system was nuts, with altitude in feet and setting in millibars — what genius came up with that? Still, it almost makes sense compared to the Russian system. They say whatever you’re used to is automatically “easy”. I wonder if Russian pilots think so.

At the point of rotation departing Vladivostok.

At the point of rotation departing Vladivostok.

The weather has been much better since crossing the Himalayas. It stayed CAVU (or as they put it here, CAVOK) except for some haze in Beijing. I didn’t even see another cloud until I was halfway to Tokyo on the most recent leg.

The Sea of Japan doesn’t look like much on a map, but from 33,000 feet, there’s no land in sight anywhere.

No land in sight.

No land in sight.

Remember I said Tashkent looked like Denver? Tokyo looks like Newark — at least, what I could see of the place from the airport.

Clearing the active at Haneda.

Clearing the active at Haneda.

Go To Page 2


Cessna Flap Actuator Screw C301002-0204 picture

Cessna Flap Actuator Screw C301002-0204

$315.00



Cessna 140 P/N 0425118 (S4628-1180) LH IB Flap Fitting picture

Cessna 140 P/N 0425118 (S4628-1180) LH IB Flap Fitting

$224.00



Cessna Flap Motor Gear Box picture

Cessna Flap Motor Gear Box

$300.00



Tested - Cessna 150 Flap Motor and Drive System, 12V, PN: C301002-0103  C301002 picture

Tested - Cessna 150 Flap Motor and Drive System, 12V, PN: C301002-0103 C301002

$549.00



Cessna Electroluminescent Flap Panel P/N 1213722-6 picture

Cessna Electroluminescent Flap Panel P/N 1213722-6

$115.00



PIPER 63782-003 FLAP HANDLE PIN-NEW 1EA picture

PIPER 63782-003 FLAP HANDLE PIN-NEW 1EA

$25.00



KRP172108FT KAMATICS FLAP ROLLER BEARING, NEW SURPLUS Gulfstream GV, G550 picture

KRP172108FT KAMATICS FLAP ROLLER BEARING, NEW SURPLUS Gulfstream GV, G550

$600.00



Cessna Flap Motor 24-28V C-301002-0108 C301002-0108 picture

Cessna Flap Motor 24-28V C-301002-0108 C301002-0108

$75.00



Aviation 12-515-007-4 24vdc Aircraft Flap Motor Drive  40:1 Gear Ratio Vintage picture

Aviation 12-515-007-4 24vdc Aircraft Flap Motor Drive 40:1 Gear Ratio Vintage

$139.00



Boeing Flap Shafts C317978-6 *New Old Stock, Sale for 2* picture

Boeing Flap Shafts C317978-6 *New Old Stock, Sale for 2*

$250.00



Powered by WordPress. Designed by WooThemes