I had previously made available to the aviation community the radio doucumentary I produced for Radio Clyde back 1998 about flying down the IGS 13 to land at Kai Tak.
I left Radio Clyde in July 2007, and sad to say they no longer host the audio in their archives. Fortunately I have subsequently found new hosting and also given permission to some creative folks to add sim video to the audio.
Some folk working on a new Flight Sim program for Kai Tak have done some magic with my audio by adding flight sim visuals to it, under the title Kai Tak Reloaded.
If any of the folk you helped me make the show are still around I'd love to hear from them. Also please post any comments on the show and memories about the IGS 13 approach here on PPRuNe.
Thanks to eveyone involved in Hong Kong aviation who made the show possible specially British Airways and Cathay Pacific for the flight deck access. Also thanks to those at the Northwest Airlines flight simulator training centre, NATCO, in Minneapolis and to all flight crews, active and retired, military,cargo and passenger, from many different organisations around the world. A special thanks also to the ATC staff at Hong Kong Tower and Approach Radar. The documentary would never have been made without the help from all mentioned.
John MacCalman Glasgow, Scotland
PS I am still researching my Micronesia Avaition TV documentary but funding is the main stumbling block!
Last edited by John MacCalman; 5th Aug 2012 at 08:55.
Reason: updating link info so that those who want the audio don't have to scroll all the way through the thread
Don't know if you remember me, you sent me a copy of the Kai Tak tape back when I was working there. Unfortunately it was tossed out (along with my Oshkosh black friday tape) when my wife decided that our cassette collection was taking up valuable CD storage space. Having spotted your PPRuNe article I can now download it, burn it to CD and save it to listen to in my not too distant old age
Off the IGS there was a right turn to finals so the right wing went down and presented the RHS pax with a view of the rooftops - the LHS pax saw the sky - whilst we were getting "Terrain!" (or was it "Sinkrate!"), probably both, from the double decker bus on the flyover
Hi John, Thanks for the link. As an Approach and Tower controller at Kai Tak for 12 years, it certainly brought back some great memories. I particularly enjoyed the comments by pilots on Hong Kong ATC. The airspace here in Hong Kong is still complicated but Chek Lap Kok aerodrome is boring after Kai Tak. Thanks again.
As an Approach and Tower controller at Kai Tak for 12 years, it certainly brought back some great memories.
There was much fascinating info that I didn't put in the show as it was primarily for consumption by a non-aviation audience. Oner of these was they way pilots and ATC recognised the capabilities and limitations of each other. ATC knew the pilots they could trust and those who may need a little encouragement.
please allow me to appologize in advance about my ignorance is the IGS13 a specially modified version of an ILS apporach just for kaitak runway 13? I tried to search for IGS (instrument guidance system) but haven't found ANYTHING other than info about kai tak thanks in advance! E
energie, the IGS is basically an ILS that was offset from the runway 13 centreline by 47 degrees. As a result the minima was set further back ( 620 from memory) and at this point you had to be visual otherwise execute a missed approach (which involved a turn through 47 deg to track initially an adf outbound ). If visual at the minima then the visual segment was flown with reference to strobe lights on the ground which gave a constant rate of turn to the runway threshold. Doing that plus maintaining a constant 700 ft / min rate of decent tended to work out well. It got tricky with reduced vis or strong crosswinds. Will try and dig out an old approach plate for the IGS and post it here if I can work out how.
Personally I thought the CC letdown was a more exciting approach.
John, thanks for the program....brought back some great memories.
(apologies to all if any mistakes, it has been a while)
Hi John Thanks for the memories. I worked in Kai Tak tower on a morning shift on the 6th July 1998, the last day of ops there, and then a morning shift on Approach the next day at CLK on it's first day of operations. I must say that the first day at CLK was quite interesting as we were operating a new radar system, totally rearranged airspace, and quite new procedures. We had gone through a bit of conversion training, but my colleagues and myself at CLK just had to compromise as we went along. Plenty of support from management of course. It interets me from a Controller's point of view that as far as the flight crews were concerned, we (ATC) at Kai Tak could do no wrong, and that comes out in your interviews. However it was the same guys and gals that lugged their headsets over to the new airport in July '98, and it soon got back to the same old criticisms and niggles that one gets everywhere else. Sure, in the almost 9 years since CLK openned, some of the original Kai Tak crew have gone, and we have lot's of new local people here now, but they are still being trained and prepared mainly by people like myself. So the leopard didn't change it's spots, just the tree that it hung out in.
I was operating a flight from Osaka (503) a 743 on that last day. In fact we positioned a video camera onto the windshield and filmed the whole approach. Two of us have since left but the SF/O maybe still with you. There are three copies somewhere of which I have one. The weather wasn't at its best but the IGS is excellent. The USS Nimitz was in that day and we zoom the camera down to her which is quite impressive. The tape is still on VHS and I would like to edit some of the quieter moments out and burn onto a disk. Taxiing back on B1 and the bridge we kept the camera rolling and enjoyed a couple of classic arrivals before turning right over the bridge. I still watch it and use it to show friends and colleagues the infamous IGS. A real treasure.
I got to HK in Jan 98 but never got to work operationally at Kai Tak.I thought it was a great Airport,but had reached it's sell by date.It was struggling to cope with the traffic,had a night curfew and could have wx problems. I became one of (im)famous Gweilo Airlines,and Gweilo Regional at CLK and it was a great way to meet the rest of the controllers.It was also interesting to see how people were adapting to CLK after Kai Tak.The locals seemed to have problems changing over, but for us it was curious how they were so Kai Tak through and through.It was if you were putting down their prize puppy dog. Anyway nice to see it remembered and I've still got my Kai Tak I.D. Proud of it,and proud to have been part of HK ATC. What a bunch..
On the beach, Ah Good Moaning Monsieur, Dead right there.3 year paid holiday at CLK tower.I did try to use a bit of imagination,but it was always a big ''cannot''.Why 10 bucks!! Never mind at least I get radar here and pay raises as well. Bon Jour now.
I lived in HK for a year in 1993-94 and always got myself a right hand seat when flying into Kai Tak, spectacular.
When I got there for the first time, there was a Chinese B747 in the water next to the runway with the tail blown off !
The story was that they'd either forgotten to set the autobrake, or it had gone off by itself and the PF "forgot" to apply brakes manually. Sounds incredible. Does anybody here have any good information about this mishap ?
Anyhow, the airport had to close due to tail obstructing the departure end. The story was that the airport manager simply called the SAS (no not the airline :-), who drilled holes in the tail fin and blew it off ! So typical for Hong Kong, quick and efficient.
Noone was hurt. Some passengers actually didn't realise they'd ended up in the extra-fragrant water around the airport, it all happened so "gently". Or perhaps they were used to "artistic" Kai Tak landings.
Another story was that a tug that was nearby actually sailed towards the plane, and pushed it back to the airport, as it was still floating.
Gargleblaster. I believe the accident you refer to was caused by aquaplaning. The weather was atrocious at the time, seem to remember that it was either the tail end of a typhoon, or rain squalls that preceeded one. Certaily a number of aircraft had decided to give Kai Tak a miss at the time. The tail was indeed removed by explosives, this was carried out by the bomb disposal unit of the Royal Hong Kong Police, and it needed several attempts, says something for structural integrity. You are right about the tug, it was nearby at the time of the incident, and the Captain used his initiative by nudging the aircraft towards the end of the runway, all exited without getting their feet wet!
Ok, maybe someone here might be able to offer a little help, I need copies of the original Airport parking charts for Kia Tak to update a current freeware project for FS9, tried a quick look at those on the offered sites but they always come out unreadable so cannot make the correct assignments, if anyone has copies and would be able to share them, much appreaciated.