Air Contractors DVD

When the word Aviation is said you automatically think planes, general aviation, civil aviation, but most often the word Cargo will not appear. But every day hundreds of flights, fly throughout the world delivering vital cargo supplies to your country.

This DVD looks at one of the airlines that specialises in Cargo transportation. Air Contractors, an airline that flies Cargo flights on behalf of DHL, FedEx and other airlines.

Air Contractors first started their services in 1972 and today operates a fleet consisting of Airbus 300F’s, Boeing 727F’s and Lockheed Hercules C-130’s. On this DVD there are a total of 21 Flights flying in and out of the following places:

Budapest, Hungary Dublin, Ireland Marseille, France
Paris CDG, France Shannon, Ireland East Midlands, UK
Cologne, Germany London Stansted, UK Metz, France

This DVD will only show 2 aircraft out of the fleet of 3. As the DVD starts the first few flights will be aboard the C-130. Below I review the cargo flights of Air Contractors using the C-130 followed by the Airbus 300F.

Distinguishing the C-130 engine sounds from any other aircraft is simple, so when you hear an aircraft on final, and you hear the sound, you know what it is. So as the DVD starts we view the C-130 land and taxi in. From then we prepare for its departure, viewing how the aircraft is loaded, prepared, and the crews job all before the engines start.

On comes the cargo, amazing how much cargo can be held in a single C-130, followed with Pre-Flight checklists. We then meet the C-130 load master, who’s job is very important. Basically he is needed to load our aircraft evenly, so in flight the aircraft won’t be to heavy or too light in certain places. But this is very important on the ground also; as I’m sure you have all seen what happens to an aircraft when it is loaded wrong! Very embarrassing! We are then given a full walk around of the aircraft with the pilot as he explains what the objective of a walk around is and what to look for when doing it. As we move on, the engine start sequence is very impressive, as you hear those four big engines get ready for their flight.

Remember all this is viewed by many different camera’s in and around the plane. We then get to listen to Pilot and ATC communicate together, in crystal clear audio! As the pilot gains clearance to Taxi, we view from the many windows inside the cockpit the taxi to our departure runway. We then line up and get ready for the takeoff role. Turn your speakers up loud, and watch as we rumble down the runway bouncing on the un-even ground…

Climbing out looking at the airport overview from the cockpit, what amazing scenery, as you can pick out each aircraft and its airline. Climbing up and out of the city, listening to ATC, viewing the towns below, what comes nearer to actually being on the flight deck?
Cruising in the night looking at the lightened city below is one thing you don’t get to see from your own home. We then meet the First Officer of our flight who gives us a detailed run-down on the controls, dials and switches aboard the C-130 and what they all are used for and what they all do. When this is happening you are able to view all the dials clearly as the cameras give you just the correct amount of lighting needed.

Then comes the approach, descending over the night-lit towns, viewing the cars below, hearing the ATC, watching the pilots prepare us, and then see the runway approach is all totally amazing. Then before you know it ‘Bump’ and were down on our runway apply the brakes and then taxi in to the very quiet but yet very live airport. Again all this will take place again and again, in day and night, in good weather in bad weather, but yet it’s a pilot’s Job. And we get to sit at home comfortable watching the Pilots work…

Next is the Airbus 300F firstly you can see the cockpit, which you cannot mistake the Airbus Grey cockpit. Looking at this inside of the Airbus 300F you notice it is slightly different to the C-130 a lot nicer and cleaner. Strange but suppose the C-130’s are old and not like the Airbus in anyway. How the airbus is loaded is very different to the
C-130, the C-130 carries objects of strange shape and size but the A300 carries Cargo Pallets, which are all neatly fitted inside the hold.
On the flight deck the cockpit is nicely illuminated as we prepare for departure. By comparing the two cockpits, you’d imagine the C-130 is harder to fly than the A300, who knows. Strange how the cockpits of two aircraft make them look so much different in the overall flight dynamics. Another very different thing is the engine noise, as above you have the C-130 propeller sound, compared to the 2 Rolls Royce engines, I know what I prefer. We use this aircraft on 6 flights, and the C-130 on a total of 12 flights. As we watch 3 flights inside the A300F from Cargo loading to Cargo Unloading.

We then go outside with the flight engineer who gives us a very detailed walk around of the A300F explaining what he looks at, and why. We then go on a flight, and in mid flight meet the Engineer again, who this times give us a detailed explanation of his Engineers Panel, then we meet the First Officer and Captain who give us some information on the main panel and what each dial does and is used for, very interesting to see the difference between the two panels. As we watch the final flight come into land, it really is amazing to think some of that cargo maybe becoming to you.

That is just a little information on what this little Disk has to offer you. A total of 180mins of non stop aviation, flying 2 different aircraft and meeting many people worldwide. All for a small $35.

I personally know, no other way of being aboard 21 flights, at the comfort of your home. A big yes for aviation enthusiasts.

Thanks To:
JustPlanes – For letting me review this product.

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