!!!!! GONE FLYING !!!!!

If you need to contact me... email: [email protected]


"Pic of the day" sent in by Craig M from Ottawa. He watched flight tracker for days until he got the shot of all shots. It's beautiful.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Email/pics/feedback from you...

From Leon in Calgary....

Hi Captain Doug

A question popped up in my head the other day and I was wondering if you could address it in either your blog or in enRoute.

If winglets (as found on newer jets such as ERJs and next gen B737) produce less drag aerodynamically and more fuel efficient, then why are they not found on the newest big jets such as A380 and B777?


Leon. Excellent question. If you look at the B777's wing you'll see it has a unique twist near the wing tip. I believe it's called a raked wing.
Boeing determined by increasing wing area and by fine tuning the design it was not necessary to add winglets. Winglets can be an issue in tight spots on the ground as well. They just don't go up but bend outward on many aircraft. 

I was going to say Boeing didn't want to admit winglets worked because it was Airbus that lead the way.  Having said that the B747-400 and the new
B737s have winglets. Boy, I know I'm going to get flak from the Boeing camp on this. LOL

Heck, since I'm on a roll what about that control column? The new B787 still utilizes that "thing" between a pilot's legs. Sure you need it 
for take off and landing, but what about the 10 to 14 hours in between? Which leads me to the one of many Boeing/Airbus jokes. "An Airbus pilot
has nothing between his legs."

Leon, hopefully this question will stir the pot and will generate the real answer about B777's winglets.

From Rob in San Francisco

Doug, for gods sake quit being sorry for nothing.Your blog is by far the best out there. I look forward to reading it at all times. My best buddy is an F/A for Delta, 32nd year this year and I turned him onto your blog also. Now he is also flying the A319+A320. Hope you blog for years to come!!. Hope tp see you and your bus at SFO. Yeah I know you guys and gals dont like it but it is great for spotters.Great views of the 28s and even better spotters point at the hold short line of 01 right. KEEP IT UP!!

From Getjets in New Orleans

Nice shot of our A320 on approach into Las Angeles

From Christer in Charlotte, North Carolina

Shot taken during an airport visit with his sons. Lufthansa flies there with an 

From Konrad in Poland

 A military pilot aspiring to be an airline pilot. (Received this morning)

From Brian in Ontario.
"Speaking of weather, my very humble meteorological claim to fame is an encounter with Kelvin-Helmholtz instability over Georgia a couple of years ago."

He is chief pilot of a small charter company and had an interview with Air Canada.
He is still waiting for the results. I have my fingers crossed.

I hope I didn't miss anybody. Thanks everyone.

Chris St. Clair (Oakville, Ontario....my hometown)

Before I go I'd like to thank Chris St. Clair at the Weather Network for having me in this morning for a few questions on weather. You should see my "mug shot" now and again for the next few days...in the meantime...anyone want to come to Mexico City this afternoon? ....gone flying.... Captain D


Bas said...

I believe the 777 doesn't have winglets because it in itself is efficient enough already. The plane has a bigger wingspan taking away the need of winglets. I read it somewhere in a magazine, it's not the complete story though! (Boeing did good testing on this one!)

No Boeing Vs. Airbus chatter from my side this time :P One thing I do would like to ask you is: How's the switch between right hand joystick inputs (FO) to left hand joystick inputs? I have a joystick at home for recreational purpose in Flight Simulator and I tried flying with my left hand, the landing was somewhat... unstable haha.


Captain Doug said...


I think I alluded to the fact Boeing increased the wingspan/area to alleviate the need for winglets. :)

Left hand, right hand? Yes, it takes some getting used to. Plus you have to find the centre of the airplane again for landing/take off and for us captains to get the nose wheel on the yellow line. There's also putting an earpiece in the other ear so working the radios and listening with the other ear takes some getting used to.

I'm out the door for the third most populated city in the world Mexico City. In fact, it's in third place only by 100,000 to Seoul, Korea.
Just checked the world's ten most populated cites and I've been to nine of them. I'm missing Jakarta.


Anonymous said...

I thought it had more to do with the majority phases of flight.

My understanding is that the winglets add efficiency during the take off and decent phases of flight, but they cause excess drag when in the cruise portion. There main purpose is to reduce drag created by wing tip vortices.

With that in mind, the 777 is usually used for long haul flights and you wouldn't want them do to the longer amount of time spent in cruise.

I also was reading about the "raked wings" which Boeing has added to both the new 787 and the new 747-8, apparently it is the best of both worlds, the design reduces the vortices off of the wing tips while not sticking up into the air flow to create more drag.

I stand to be corrected, as this was just my understanding of the winglet debate.

brian t said...

A note to Leon - the A380 does have winglets, but they're quite small. I took a picture of one at the Paris Air Show back in 2006: link to Gallery.

Bas said...

Have fun Captain! Jakarta is a Toronto Air Canada destination right!? Who knows...!

Foggy said...

Hi Doug,

Back on-line... again!!! More woes but the info you requested will be on its way Monday morning.

Some interesting takes on the winglet v. "raked" wing tip. The B772 ERs have a normal wingtip, the B773 ER/LR have a raked wing tip. Without looking at my archive I don't know about the B772LR. More interestingly, the B767 has a mix of everything: normal, winglet and raked depending on the model. The "new" B767 Tanker for the USAF has shown raked and winglet configurations in any number of artist impressions. I guess time will tell on that one. It will depend on vortex flow patterns off the wingtip and the effect on the receiver aircraft refuelling from the wing mounted hose/drogue pods. even more interesting is that Airbus are, or will soon be, offering "proper" winglets - they are calling them "Sharklets"(?) - on A320 family aircraft. They may be standard on the A320NEO.

I think I've commented on the sidestick thing before. I am profoundly right-handed but when I flew an A330 sim at Cheadle a couple of years ago I was able to adapt to the left-hand sidestick very quickly. The first landing was on-speed, correct attitude, right in the centre of the touchdown zone and on the centreline - we could feel the bumps as the simulated nosewheel ran over the simulated centreline lights :) That was in "Cub" mode, not "Star-trek".

Like Bas, I tried a left-hand stick for MSFS - it's a good job it was a sim!!

Cheers for now...

Craig said...

I love that overhead Air Canada shot at LAX. That same guy has plenty of great photos of the same style on Airliners.net.

And while I hate to try and advertise my Flickr page, this feels like a good opportunity to share all my pics.


- Craig M.

YOWJeff said...

Capt. Doug, with all the interviews you do on TWN, are you worried they are going high-def? If you do feel the need to visit a salon before your first HD interview, please don't tell us, I don't think that 'pilot' and 'manscape' work well in the same sentence :P

Andrew said...

I think one of the benefits of a yoke is that it gives the pilot a visual indication of what the autopilot is doing (or FO) :)

Bas said...

Hey Foggy,

You tried the same, lol! By the way, sharklets is correct :)


Foggy said...

Bas, yeeessssssss! I tried!!

Why "Sharklets"? The new A320 series additions don't look anything like shark fins. More like a mature male orca fin, or the original Learjet "Longhorn" version. I remembered that the Seattle lot are also using raked wingtips on their B737-900EXR, SL, GTI, whatever TLA they are using this week, instead of the winglet; and on the P8 replacement for the P3 Orion MPAs. Any wager's on seeing raked wingtips on an Airbus in the next five years?

Anonymous said...


whywhyzed said...

I am baffled by that shot of the 320 on approach to LAX...... I have been to LAX many times, but can't figure out where that shot would have been taken from...it's where Lincoln and Sepulveda splits, but how can you get higher than the aircraft??

jack said...

Foggy- Yes; A350.

Whywhyzed- I think it was taken from a Helicopter. Could have also been the orbiting space station :D.

Daniel said...

^ It was taken from a small aircraft flying the LAX class bravo transition.

Bryan said...

hey doug, have you ever flown a professional sports team with jetz before?

Captain Doug said...

Hi Bryan.

I did one JETZ charter and it was for the Boston Bruins. Maybe it was an omen? LOL


Hello Captain!

Saw your interview on TWN....great job! I knew when I clicked on the "Flying in Thunderstorms" link that it would be you talking!

Great pics too by the way!

Enjoying the thunderstorms in YSJ

and Doppler indicated Tornados...on the East Coast!!!

Happy Flying!

CAT III Approach

Pondopholous said...

If it's anything like the way we build the wings for model sailplanes, the twist at the tip is to give the tips a lower angle of attack than the rest of the wing and so reduces the chance of tip stall: it's called "washout". Interesting how all the wing tweaks we had on our model sailplane wings (washout, raked tips,...) to get every last bit of performance are now being used on airliners.


getjets said...

Your interview on TWN....very Good Captain Doug....along with the great lightning bolt shots!!!!!!!!!!!!Why not an Air Canada winglet instead of WJ???

Safe flying to the Mexico city!...coming up??

oh and Craig M....Thanks for sharing your page....great pics....can never get enough of them jets!!!

getjets said...



80% of video on winglets....
look at it as 'extra credit'...
take care


Captain Doug said...


Winglets do decrease drag associated with vortices.

I'm not sure if I agree with your comment about the cruise phase.

There are many long haul using them such as the A340, A330, B747-400....

But I do agree with you regarding the "raked wings."

Captain D

Captain Doug said...

Hi Bas. Nope, we don't fly to Jakarta. But maybe one day. :)

Captain Doug said...

Foggy. Thanks for the in-depth take on winglets. I may be using this question for a future enRoute question.

Sounds like you are a natural in the simulator. :)))

Captain Doug said...

Craig M. Thanks for the link to your pics. You have some great ones!

Keep "flickring."


Captain Doug said...


Funny Chris (TWN) did comment on his "caked on" face. :)

The Weather Network is in transition so if you have a pimple or wrinkles, people are going to know about them. :)

Funny, "number one" keeps telling me I need a makeover. Maybe I'll get HD qualified? LOL

Captain Doug said...


Not sure how one can tell what the autopilot is doing through the yoke, but you make a great point about the
"other" pilot. That's the glitch about the Airbus joysticks. You are at the mercy of the other guy unless you do an "override."

Captain Doug said...

Foggy (Bas) Raked wings on an Airbus? Ohhhh, that's too Boeing...for an Airbus. LOL

But you are probably right....in five years a Boeing will look an Airbus and vice-versa. :))))

Captain Doug said...

Chris. Thanks for having me! Captain D

Captain Doug said...

Anon (reference to YVR ATC proposing to his girlfriend on an AC flight).

I did see this video awhile ago but it's a great one.

It just exemplifies we at AC do have hearts. I think the skipper did a great job orchestrating the
romantic "will you marry me" request.

I haven't been asked to that on my flight...yet.... :))))

Captain Doug said...


Not sure how it was taken either but what a shot!!!!

Looks like Daniel and Jack have a couple of takes on how it was done.

You sure do know LAX. :)

Captain Doug said...

CAT III Approach.

You also watch the Weather Network? Lots of people are glued to it.

Years ago, I heard it's the most watched station here in Canada. We Canadians sure do like talking about our weather.

Thanks for the comments. :))))

Captain Doug said...

Pondopholous (Rob) There's lots going on as far as wing design....sweptback, dihedral, "washout", camber, winglets, raked wings, etc.

I guess engineers are tweaking things to perfection. There sure are some beautful wings out there because of it.

Thanks for visiting!

Captain Doug

Captain Doug said...

Getjets. I asked the same question....why "Westjet" winglets? Apparently, there is very little AC footage out there and the producer liked the shots. :)))

Captain Doug said...

Getjets. Watched the video link you sent. Great stuff. It was a great "winglet 101" course. :))))

Daniel Asuncion said...

Doug "Holmes":

For future reference...

Next time that Number 1 says that something "doesn't look right", just say, "Well then...don't look at it!"

Captain Doug said...


Doug "Holmes" has finished the deck....I'm looking around for the next set of marching orders.... :))))

Daniel Asuncion said...

Oops! Neglected to mention that I thought it quite unlikely that something actually wasn't right about the deck.

From what I gather, you're the only mechanically inclined member of the family...so, if there was something amiss, you would've spotted it early.

[Have to remember not to send messages when I'm in a hurry.]

Captain Doug said...


I was building the deck thinking "water run off" but "number one" was thinking nice and level for her NEW
deck furniture. Guess who won? :))))

Yup, the next day I was ripping it up...

Goes to show, "do it right the first time" or "listen to number one right away!"