Browsing Tag: JAL

Boeing 787 Dreamliners for ANA, JAL and China Southern sit waiting for parts at Paine Field.

Boeing 787 Dreamliners for ANA, JAL and China Southern sit waiting for parts at Paine Field.

The Boeing 787 Dreamliner is about to start a new round of testing to prepare for its first customer, All Nippon Airways (ANA), during the third quarter of 2011. During the week of July 4th, the second Dreamliner, ZA002 is expected to start service readiness testing in Japan.

Both companies will help to simulate in-service operations at several airports throughout Japan. ANA’s maintenance crews will also have the ability to service the 787 during the testing, including fit checks for airplane jacks, towing and refueling the aircraft. The testing is expected to take place during the week of July 4th.  This will also mark the first time that the 787 has flown to and with-in Japan.

At this point, ANA is expecting their first 787 Dreamliner sometime between August and September. Boeing is not officially talking about who will receive the next few 787s. However, Boeing President Jim McNerney announced that China Southern should receive their first Dreamliner during the fourth quarter this year.

Japan Airlines (JAL) has recently announced they will operate the Boeing 787 Dreamliner on a route from Narita Japan to Boston, starting in April 2012, but a JAL spokes person confirmed to me via email that this will not be the first 787 they will receive. “The first 787 will not be on the [Tokyo to Boston] route, but this route is the first one named by JAL to use the 787.” The spokesperson explained. “We haven’t announced where the first 787 will be deployed to.” JAL hopes to receive their first 787 by the end of 2011 and receive five Dreamliners by the end of the 2011 fiscal year.

It is not exactly clear if China Southern or JAL will receive the second 787, but this timeline suggests that ANA will not be flying the 787 exclusively for very long. With ANA’s pride in being the first customer for the 787 and all their advertising featuring the aircraft and even operating a site dedicated to the aircraft called “ANA We Fly 1st,” I can only imagine that the airline was hoping to be the only airline flying the Dreamliner for a bit longer than a few months at most.

Really? This is the best they can do? So much white and a little too simple for my tastes.

Really? This is the best they can do? So much white and a little too simple for my tastes. This is JAL's next livery.

This new livery from Japan Airlines (JAL) is a bit of a shocker to me. Earlier in the week, I started to see people talking on the web about JAL changing their livery and adding the historic crane back. I have actually like JAL’s current livery and was surprised to see them announcing a new one already. Then I started to see the drawings of what the new livery was supposed to look like.

At first I thought, “no way, what person did this mock up and showing it around the web?” It almost looked like someone made a custom livery on their home computer. So, I headed to the source and JAL’s press page. Holy smokes, they have the same mock up of the new livery. I am a little shocked that the mock up isn’t a little more professionally done, but I guess at least it gives us a good idea what it will look like.

At first I thought this livery was a horrid idea. Going from a pretty trendy looking livery with a nice cream-colored base to bleach white with just a crane and black titles. After some time looking at it, I don’t know what to think — I might have to wait until seeing it in person. It seems like it is very, very plain, but it might have a good enough retro feel to work. I think a clean red cheat-line might have brought it all together with a little update to the crane.

It seems a little odd to me that the company would be spending so much on a re-branding during a financially difficult time, but they are hoping it to celebrate the changes. The new livery will first be seen on a Boeing 767-300ER and I will for sure be looking for her in person to see how it turns out.

One of the benefits of world travel is plane spotting in different locations. Although spotting at Paine Field can be highly entertaining, it doesn’t compare to spotting at Tokyo’s Haneda airport which handles most of Tokyo’s domestic traffic. Sure, busy American airports like Atlanta sure see a lot of traffic, but it is mostly smaller aircraft like regional jets, MD-80’s and Boeing 767’s. At Haneda you are seeing much bigger aircraft like domestic Boeing 747-400’s with no winglets and plenty of 777s. Although Japan is only about the size of California, they fly very large aircraft on domestic routes due to demand and slots.

A few Boeing All Nippon Airways aircraft at Haneda Airport.

A few Boeing All Nippon Airways aircraft at Haneda Airport.

Haneda Airport had observation decks on all three terminals. During my recent trip to Haneda to check out the new International Terminal, I spent a good amount of my time enjoying the nice rainy outdoors (what a break from Seattle right?) and of course taking photos of aircraft I can’t always see in the US. I wanted to share some of my favorites and of course you can check out all 115 airline photos at Haneda via my Flickr page. I got onto the deck on Terminal 2 the very first thing in the morning at 6:30am local time when it opened. I had to wait for the guard to open the door and he looked at me oddly when I rushed out in the rain to check out the aircraft.  It was great to see all the large All Nippon Airways and Japan Air Line large aircraft waiting to be pulled to their gates (photo).

All Nippon Airways Boeing 747-400 (JA8956) in Pokemon Livery

All Nippon Airways Boeing 747-400 (JA8956) in Pokemon Livery

I knew that All Nippon Airways flies two Pokemon themed 747-400’s but seeing one in person is quite the scene. It was a little bit too much for me, but quite the interesting sight.

One of two observation decks at Terminal 2. Why can't the US have sweet decks like this?

One of two observation decks at Terminal 2. Why can't the US have sweet decks like this?

Haneda treats spotters with a lot of treats. Almost the entire roof on all three terminals have spotting decks. One side of Terminal 2 had comfortable seating and even a few restaurants. I wish more American airports treated airline spotters with such goodies.

ANA Boeing 747, 777, 737 and Q400 with ships in the background.

ANA Boeing 747, 777, 737 and Q400 with ships in the background.

Check out all the other fun photos.