Plane spotting at Tullamarine

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Plane spotting at Tullamarine

Postby Werner K » Thu Oct 29, 2015 10:51 pm

Hi all,

my partner and I will be around the Tullamarine area on Sun 8/Mon 9 Nov and are keen to do some spotting, particularly internationals which we don't see in Adelaide.

I would like some local knowledge as to which sites are the best in particular to hear the engines wind up for takeoff on a) a northerly wind & b) a southerly wind as the wind direction will be an unknown quantity until the day of arrival. From experience, I have found somewhere forward of where the aircraft starts its windup is good, maybe a few hundred metres.

I have visited the site to the north of Tullamarine which is good for arrivals when a southerly is blowing. Do international flights in general predominantly use the N-S runway?

At this stage, I will only have internet access until about 330pm tomorrow (Fri) afternoon so any thoughts posted by then would be good. I may have internet access on Sat 7 Nov but unsure at this stage.

regards,

Werner
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Re: Plane spotting at Tullamarine

Postby Ian Gains » Fri Oct 30, 2015 6:42 am

Hi Werner,

It can be a bit of a lottery which is the active runway from day to day & things like noise abatement procedures mean that it can change several times during the day. On days where the wind is predominately from the north or south, then the north-south runway 34/16 is mainly in use for arrivals, leaving runway 27 for departures. Most of the larger aircraft normally use 34/16 for arrivals, unless the wind direction has a westerly component to it.

If you happen to have access to an air-band scanner, the Melbourne ATIS uses frequency 118.00, & the automated message on there explains the runways in use.

If you have any further questions, please post them on here & I'll help if I can.

Cheers, Ian.
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Re: Plane spotting at Tullamarine

Postby Werner K » Fri Oct 30, 2015 10:12 am

Thanks Ian for the info.

Unfortunately we don't have a scanner so we'll just play it by ear.

I noticed last night when I checked on international flights to/from Tullamarine, that there are only 2 real regular "heavies", EK & QF A388, so we'll make sure that we'll be there for the arr & dep of those :D

There is a 747 operating Sun Wed and Fri I think, other than that it's predominantly A333 with a few A332, B788, B789 and one 77W visiting. We don't see the B788/789 in Adelaide so that will be something different as will be the array of different airlines.

At present in Adelaide, we have CX, SQ & MH A333 as well as EK 77W which sounds awesome when it departs. This will be augmented by QR A350 next year all going well! We also have the occasional B747F.

regards,

Werner
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Re: Plane spotting at Tullamarine

Postby Ian Gains » Fri Oct 30, 2015 1:25 pm

Werner, you have our movements pretty well sussed, except that we get a lot more 777-300ER's than you've accounted for - Air New Zealand, 2 x Singapore Airlines, 2 x Etihad, 2 x Emirates, Qatar. Our Emirates A380 goes to/from Auckland, so you have have 4 movements there to contend with.

Sunbury Road is good for 16 arrivals; the road than runs to the ATC tower is good for afternoon 16 departures; & there are several spots for 34 arrivals, both AM & PM. 27 is a PITA during summer due to the angle of the sun, but there is a car pull off area that does provide some access, if you are unlucky enough for this to be the sole runway in use at times.
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Re: Plane spotting at Tullamarine

Postby Werner K » Fri Oct 30, 2015 1:34 pm

I've had a good read and sussed the info on the spotters guide and I've printed off a couple of expanded Google maps with the spotting locations marked.

Now just have to hope it doesn't rain!
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Re: Plane spotting at Tullamarine

Postby Ian Gains » Fri Oct 30, 2015 6:07 pm

Werner, are any of you coming over photographers, or just enthusiasts ? It just makes a difference in terms of the best spots to recommend for certain times of the day, taking the active runway into account.
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Re: Plane spotting at Tullamarine

Postby Brendan B » Tue Nov 17, 2015 6:17 am

Hi Guys
My family and I are heading to Hobart on Friday but when we return on Monday we will have 4 hours between flights at Melbourne Airport; where is the best place to get photos around the airport.
We will have 300mm and 500mm lens but of course no ladders or transport. Is there a car park view or viewing decks etc
I have my own aviation blog so I would love to get some shots in Melbourne.
If you are interested it is www.madaboutplanes.blogspot.com.au
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Re: Plane spotting at Tullamarine

Postby Ian Gains » Tue Nov 17, 2015 11:33 am

What time of day will you be here Brendan ? Will you have checked your big bags all the way through to Brisbane, or your final destination ?
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Re: Plane spotting at Tullamarine

Postby Werner K » Tue Nov 17, 2015 2:18 pm

Ian Gains wrote:Werner, are any of you coming over photographers, or just enthusiasts ? It just makes a difference in terms of the best spots to recommend for certain times of the day, taking the active runway into account.


My partner was taking the photographs and I was taking video footage. The lens used was a 250mm on a Canon 700D.

We ended up doing our plane spotting on the Sunday when both runway 27 & 34 were in operation. We arrived a bit later than intended and though we had missed the arrival of Emirates A380, but luckily for us, it was running a bit late and we made it to Operations Road on the southern approach path and were able to get both photos and video. A number of other arrivals were also captured.

We went around to the gate near the northern end of the golf course to get footage of the Emirates A380 departing for AKL as well as a few other departures before heading back to our original spot. Being a Sunday we were lucky enough to see QF 747-400 land from LAX although we nearly missed it due to uncertainty in which runway it was going to use. Also saw a SQ 747F arrive as well.

We then headed to the official viewing spot to witness some international departures although in hindsight we should have stuck to our earlier spot near the golf course as the sounds of the engines springing to life were louder and not drowned out by peoples voices and cars engines running for a/c. In the end we spent nearly 10 hours spotting and were fairly happy with what we saw.
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Re: Plane spotting at Tullamarine

Postby Brendan B » Wed Nov 18, 2015 8:27 pm

Hi Ian
We arrive at 11am and we leave at 3pm; yes our bags should be checked all the way through to Brisbane so we will only have a small amount of carry on
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