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Wednesday
Nov162011

Video: 747-200 Cockpit View Of Max Weight Takeoff - Awesome!

 

 Wow. This video might mean more to me than it will to you, however, I'm as sure as I can be that you'll love it too! It's an excellent cockpit view (shot from the jumpseat) of an older 747-200 taking off on runway 08 at the Ostend Belgium airport at or very near max takeoff weight. I highly recommend you watch this video, and that you do so in the 720p HD setting and in fullscreen... you'll feel like you're right there with the crew!

 I specifically enjoyed the video because it reminded me very much of my dad, Robert Clupper. He passed away on January 10, 2009 at age 79. For 35 years he flew for United Airlines, starting out with the DC-3 in 1952. He used to say "DC-3's to 747's, who could ask for more?" In 1971 he transitioned from being a 727 Captain to flying Co-Pilot on the 747, shortly after the airplane came online at United in 1970. He spent the rest of his career, another 16 years, in one of those two seats in the front of the 747... over 10,000 hours accumulated on this type alone!


Video screenshot of the start of takeoff roll in this very heavy 747-200


 Similar to the 747-200 in this video, the -100's that my dad mostly flew where a 3-man cockpit with a Flight Engineer sitting sideways monitoring the aircraft systems. And while the -100's had a max takeoff weight of 710,000 pounds, the -200 in the video is more like 820,000 - 830,000 pounds, or around the 371.9 (x 1000) KG seen on the gross weight indicator early in the video. Takeoffs at or near gross weight were a common experience for my dad. For several years he flew the non-stop trip from Chicago ORD to Honolulu HNL - lotsa people and cargo, and even more fuel.

 The takeoffs out of ORD on hot and windless days were pretty scary. Those early 747's were a little on the underpowered side, and at max weight and high temps, the roll down the runway was really looooong. He told me many times of how they'd rotate way down the runway, and since they were so heavy, the airplane would often roll for quite a way with the main gear still on the ground. Some of those takeoffs saw the mains leave the ground with less than 1,000 feet of runway left! He said the end of the runway would disappear from their view (under the glareshield) as they rotated, but they wouldn't be off the ground yet - Yikes! Can you even imagine what that looked and felt like from the cockpit? And the fun wasn't over yet... the rate of climb would start out at just 300 feet per minute on the worst of days! Those were some marginal operations to say the least! Thankfully, advances in aerodynamic design and far more powerful engines have left those days far behind us.


Video screenshot of the Co-Pilot hand-flying the 747 on climb out above the clouds


 So anyway, this video gives you a little feel for what it looks like with the end of the runway in sight on a heavy takeoff, and for what the early steam gauge cockpit looked like as well. For a guy like me who's really far more interested in taildraggers that don't even have starters or radios, seeing all these instruments, knobs, and switches can kinda boggle the mind! But I must say I felt like I was right there in the jumpseat... and it wasn't too hard to imagine my dad hand-flying his most favorite aircraft of all time : )

 

Video from youtuber Balleka (who also appears to love sailplanes like my dad did)

 

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April 10, 2014 | Unregistered CommenterINDRANI ASH

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