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Archive News - 2007

January 2nd;

TAM's MD11 serivces should commence on Friday January 12th from Sao Paolo to Paris six times a week and once a week from Rio DJ. Flight numbers/times are on the operators-routes/timetables-passenger page.

January 7th;

World MD11's have been busy the last few days. Aer Lingus 'borrowed' N277WA to operate from Boston-Shannon-Dublin yesterday 06/01 on EI 2132 after an A330 went tec. N277WA then returned empty to Atlanta. It is beleived they also used N804DE from World to operate from Shannon to Boston yesteray as well though i am awaiting confirmation on this.
Last nights BWIA flight 900 from Barbados to Heathrow and returning this morning BW 901 to St Lucia and Port of Spain,Trindad is being operated by retro liveried N803DE.

January 14th;

TAM MD11's entry into service has been delayed until mid Febraury after technical difficulties with the aircraft in question. It has meant TAM having to re-organise schedules until 14/02 and using an A320 to fly from Brazil to Miami vice an A330 so the A330 can do the new Paris sector that the MD11 was meant to start!

February 15th

Apologies no updates for a while, had lots to do at home plus i've been to Miami. Thankfully not a lot to write although TAM's first MD11 has entered service.

PT-MSH (cn 48755/ex PP-VQJ) entered service with TAM on 4th Feb from Sao Paolo to Paris CDG. PT-MSI should join the fleet shortly and PT-MSJ around April. Prices from TAM's web site fro Paris/Sao Paolo round trip came out as £460 GBP, pretty reasonable i thought so i'm saving hard, hope to do it sometime in the Autumn this year.

Aeroflot should recieve 2 MD11's this year, former Varig machines PP-VQF/H. They are also destined to get PT-MSH/J from TAM when their lease finnishes in 2009.

February 22nd;

Pictured at Paris CDG on 4th Feb after its inaugeral flight from Sao Paolo is TAM MD11 PT-MSH. (photo courtesy of Didairbus)

March 10th;

Varig MD11 PP-VTK cn 48540 has finnished its life as a passenger aircraft and been re-registered N288UP and ferried from Rio D.J to Singapore for freighter conversion and a new life with UPS.

March 17th;

Summer services updated on the operators/ passenger page. A few major changes, KLM to San Francisco is a B747 whilst an MD11 will go to Newark, Lima goes B777 non stop, Curacao and St Maarten go MD11 from B747. Vancouver MD11 for the Summer as in previous years and a daily flight to Delhi with an MD. Finnair are dropping Singapore for the Summer and the proposed new route to Kuala Lumpur doesn't start with frequencies increased on other routes instead. Hong Kong non stop for the Summer as in previous years. Varig retain a daily Sao Paolo/Frankfurt flight whilst TAM are to use their MD11's on a new route to Milan starting the end of March as well as the existing Paris flight.

March 18th;

Alitalia have a revised livery for thier mainline and cargo fleets. MD11 EI-UPI has been painted in the new colours but has had a few minor set backs since its repaint. Prior to its first flight from Milan to JFK, an airport worker crashed into its tail section and damaged a stabiliser. After repair it was ferried to Milan and ground staff there moved ballast from the front to the rear of the aircraft resulting in UPI sitting up on its rear end. It is expected to return to traffic next week.

Pictures showing new Alitalia Cargo livery design then EI-UPI wearing the new colours and sitting on its tail at Milan!

May 29th.
Apologies for the long gap in updates, i have moved house, changed isp's and been offline for a lot longer than expected.

Subject to alteration, Varig's final MD11 flight is scheduled for on June 8/9th. The last flight is scheduled to be from Frankfurt on June 8th, RG8741 leaving Europe at 2205. Currently RG8740/8741 GIG-GRU-FRA and vv is operating alternately with an MD11/B767. PP-VTI is the sole remaining MD11. The remainder of the Varig fleet is for UPS or Aeroflot with the possible exception of PP-VQG which has been parked at Brasilia for nearly a year now after a heavy landing damaged the central under carriage and belly.

All 3 of TAM's MD11's are now in service. PT-MSH/I/J operate from Sao Paolo to Paris and Milan.

Finnair have sold its last 2 owned MD11's to Aeroflot. OH-LGC/D will leave the fleet in November 08 and July 09 respectively. Finnairs MD11's will retire from service by the end of 2010 and are being repleaced by Airbus 330's and 340's. Click on the link below for Finnairs press release. (thanks to Patrick for this info)

Finnair Press Release

June 3rd;

Aeroflot Cargo will now get 6 MD11's, all ex passenger aircraft. They are 48502/N774BC (PP-VQF) and 48504/PP-VQH from Varig. N774BC is at Naples awaiting conversion. 48755/PT-MSH and 48758/PT-MSI from TAM. 48512/OH-LGC and 48513/PH-LGD from Finnair. The 2 ex Varig a/c should be with Aeroflot by the end of 2007,the 2 ex TAM a/c 09/08-10/08 and the 2 Finnnair machines 12/08 and 08/09.

World Airways has signed contract extensions with both Lufthansa and Air Canada for MD11F operations for the carriers.

August 17th;

Ethiopian Airlines have agreed with Boeing Capital to purchase an MD11F for entry into service early January 2009. The aircraft is an ex passenger machine, i.d unknown at present but as soon as i know i will update the web site with details. Click on the link below for the oficial ethiopian airlines press release.
Many Thanks to Patrick Nagy Fuhrer for this info.

Ethiopian Airlines Press Release

September 1st;

Shanghai Cargo Airlines have received thier third MD11F. B-2178 is cn 48543 and is again like the other 2 in the fleet an ex Eva Air machine, B-16102.

September 3rd;

Fedex have started a MD11 new service to the UK through Manchester, FDX33 routing Memphis-Paris-Manchester-Memphis on Mondays-Thursdays arring 1855. N523FE was on the inaugural flight on 28/08.

October 13th;

After experiencing problems on our flights to Brazil with TAM it would appear they have a had a spot of bother with their MD11's. Nothing serious i believe, but PT-MSI which we should of flown out on was stopped from traffic for a few days for minor repairs-a friend flew on it recently and said it only had 1 out of 4 toilets working in Y class-maybe it was stopped to fix them! I was in Sao Paolo waiting to see the Milan flight arrive which was to have been PT-MSI again but it got diverted to Rio for technical reasons. The following day we should of seen PT-MSJ arrive from Paris but it didn't show and was an A330. Then on the day we flew home, the previous Paris flight to ours was cancelled (A330) and our MD11 PT-MSI arrived okay from Milan but returned to Milan vice Paris for some strange reason. It then showed up in Paris the following evening from Milan too. Shame about all the problems because i really enjoyed flying with TAM service was great on board.

On a positive note from Brasil, i saw Varig MD11 PP-VQG in Brasilia having work done on it. (its been there since a heavy landing August 2006 damaged the centre under carriage and belly) On October 5th it flew to Rio. It is now being converted to a freighter for Aeroflot. I took the pictures below at Brasilia on 28th Sept.

October 14th;
Aeroflot Cargo now have 7/8 MD11's due over the next 2 years with the first 2 late this year/early next year. The following MD11's are confirmed for Aeroflot;

N702BC/48504 (PP-VQH), currently at Venice, due 12/07.
N774BC/48502 (PP-VQF), currently at Naples, due 12/07.
OH-LGC/48512, currently with Finnair, due 11/08.
OH-LGD/48513, currently with Finnair, due 07/09.
PP-VQG/48503, currently at Rio, due 2009.
PT-MSH/48755, currently with TAM, due 2009.
PT-MSI/48758, currently with TAM, due 2009.

Ethiopian Airlines MD11F is to come from TAM next year after it finnishes service for the Brazilian airline. PT-MSJ/48769 started life with Vasp, then Varig and now TAM. (Thanks to Patrick Nagy Fuhrer for this info)

KLM are to start a new non stop service to Panama City commencing March 2008 3 times a week with an MD11. Check out the KLM press release below. (Thanks to Richard Paris for this info)

KLM Press Release

November 7th;

After going to Taipei in July and being registered as B-16102, B-2176 cn 48415 is back in service with Shanghai Cargo.

November 10th;

Former Saudi Arabian Royal flight MD11 HZ-AFA1 cn 48533 has been re-regsitered HZ-AFAS. It has had an extensive refit at Hamburg and will now be operated as a v.i.p transport by the Saudi based ASASCO group

Looking absolutley stunning after its refit, HZ-AFAS is pictured at Hamburg 06/11/07 (picture courtesy of Kai Block)

November 22nd;

Great news, KLM are set to continue MD11 operations now until 2014/2015! After a small order for more 330/777 and a fleet renewal strategy, the 747 Combi's will be the next to be replaced, so barring another rethink, we've got about 8 more years of passenger MD11 operations!

November 26th;

World MD11F N276WA visited Bournemouth, UK yesterday, making the first visit of the type to the South Coast airport. Flight WOA 9003 aarrived from Leipzig mid afternoon. Not exactly sure what its there for but some reports say for maintenance and it'll be there for 4-5 days. If thats the case i may be able to go down later in the week and see it go out perhaps. I saw it fly over Southampton on its way in but as i was working was unable to go see it land. Luckily a few friends popped down and sent me the following photographs. (Many thanks to Justin Safe for the pics).

November 30th;

Popped down the road to see N276WA at Bournemouth today, lousy weather, should of gone yesterday. Amyway, 276 is having repair work done after a strutural rib was damaged by impact with a pallet, During repairs, floor ribs were also found to be in need of repair and this is all being done by local firm Beagle Aircraft of Christchurch, just up the road from Bournemouth. Current ETD from BOH/EGHH is Saturday. Hope to get a better pic sometime if the weather improves but if not, then this will have to do. (as well the 2 excellent landing shots from Justin)

December 3rd;
World MD11 N276WA departed Bournemouth last night as WOA9005 back to Leipzig after its repairs.

Former Varig MD11 PP-VQG is now registered N725BC and has been ferried from Rio De Janerio to Venice for freighter conversion.

December 28th;

Aeroflots first MD11F has ben painted at Helsinki and registered VP-BDP. The former PPVQF of Varig is due for delivery to its new owner shortly. It had flown to Naples for freighter conversion then up to Helisinki for painting and finalisation work. Click on the link below to see Harri Koskinen's pciture on

picture of VP-BDP at Helsinki

A new MD11 book has recently been released, called Northbound Lady by Karl-Peter Ritter. The former Lufthansa Cargo MD11 pilot writes about The north polar flight routings from Europe to Asia, with their remote emergency airports and unique landscape are among the most spectacular airways in the world. This book joins the last big Trijet the McDonnell Douglas MD-11 on her journey via Greenland and the North Polar Sea to the fuel stop in Alaska and further via the Bering Sea to Japan. The layover in Fairbanks gives a fascinating insight into life at 40° below zero and artic aviation with bush pilots and over fifty year old veteran airliners still flying the skies of Alaska.

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