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Fragrant Harbour A forum for the large number of pilots (expats and locals) based with the various airlines in Hong Kong. Air Traffic Controllers are also warmly welcomed into the forum.


Old 7th Jun 2013, 10:39
  #1 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Hong Kong
Posts: 368

Well according to the latest publication from GMF , All Boeing pilots are now required to wear headsets full time when flying over Chinese airspace.
Well! isn't that going to be absolutely wonderful ? NOT .
The new headsets are incredibly uncomfortable especially if you have to wear them for hours, Maybe he will now take pity on the poor pilots and buy some decent lightweight headsets for them to wear.

I would like to remind the GMF that before he " dictated " the use of flight interphone at all times when using headsets we never had these problems on the boeing simply because we never used the intercom switch.

So instead of punishing everyone for an individual that left the intercom switch latched on ,simply introduce a procedure when taking headsets off, select an HF audio button thereby ensuring that you have the volume set to an appropriate level for communications and if nothing is heard for more than 5 mins over China Hello xxx radio check I have never gone for more than a few mins without some kind of RT chatter over China . It's pretty much endless and now I have to suffer it through an uncomfortable headset JUST GREAT !!!
oriental flyer is offline  
Old 7th Jun 2013, 11:47
  #2 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Australia
Posts: 2,163
Really, you're worried about that??????

Haven't you got more pressing things to worry you????

Pay, FTL's etc

Just wear the damn headset.....
nitpicker330 is offline  
Old 7th Jun 2013, 18:21
  #3 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: HKG
Posts: 140
To Nitpickers point:

The latest AOA update to come out has some very interesting language that appears to be turning up the thermostat on our unresolved issues of pay, FTL, basings, housing (25 year), etc. If you are not an AOA member, I suggest doing so. At a worst case, it is a reasonable fee for the Insurance program it provides, and at best, you can keep up on what is surely to be a turbulent year.

To Cathay Management: We pilots really are a reasonable bunch of fellas. Our grievances and issues are legitimate, and we simply ask for an audience to deal with those things.

We feel it is a poor management style to force industrial unrest in order to have a simple chat, and resolve issues to both our satisfaction.

I am a business owner myself, and can say with confidence, that if I was approached by one of my employees who said they had some issues, and needed to talk, it would be done without question. That doesn't mean that I can necessarily accomplish all of what they like, but an open, honest hearing is a given.

We don't want to kill the Golden Goose, but inflation and costs here in Hong Kong are killing us. Hard.
ASH1111 is offline  
Old 7th Jun 2013, 22:18
  #4 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Not in a Bus
Posts: 325
Oriental Flyer

Dunno what rigours you went through to get your current comfy chair with room service but:-

incredibly uncomfortable
poor pilots
now I have to suffer
Really?? Never wore a Bonedome, sweated it out in Ag Flying, Froze in the Arctic, Stank over the Dingo fence. You're ridiculous/hilarious/giving us a bad name mate - Man Up.
White None is offline  
Old 8th Jun 2013, 00:10
  #5 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Hong Kong
Posts: 600
Perhaps Airbus pilots, in a show of solidarity for our brothers on the Boeing fleets, should wear headsets in China too?

Steve the Pirate is offline  
Old 8th Jun 2013, 00:20
  #6 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Hong Kong
Posts: 369
.....alternatively, CX could address the problem at it's root cause.
Consider - does this happen in other ATC areas? - answer I would suggest is no.
So why does it happen just north of the border? -
Very simple - the noodle slurpers in whose airspace we fly, just crack on the whole time in some unintelligible verbal barbed wire that is meant to pass for mandarin / putonghua at a guess, not un-naturally one tends to switch off to random discussion about the market price of fish.
Consequently, when they do try and call an English speaking crew, because the controllers sound like they have a bunch of marbles in their mouth, it still sounds like barbed wire rather than English. Hence no reply.
So here's a suggestion - they want to be thought of as world leaders and the next super power, how about getting them off their peasant mentality of random chit chat on control frequencies, and when they do have something important to say - do it in [email protected] English!
Give Air China crews their due, they must have a mandate to talk in English, as they seem to do this even when the controllers talk to them in barbed wire!
Really, Chinese ATC need to get with the program, and CX, along with the other English speaking airlines who have to wade through the sludge of Chinese ATC, through ICAO should tell China to assemble their faeces in one sock. Unfortunately, the powers that be would rather patch holes in a broken system with the headset NTC which is clearly nothing more than a poorly thought out knee-jerk band-aid.
LongTimeInCX is offline  
Old 8th Jun 2013, 00:54
  #7 (permalink)  
Nemo Me Impune Lacessit
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Derbyshire, England.
Posts: 4,058
Oriental Flyer

For as little as US$500.00 you can buy your own Sennheiser, with noise cancellation, that will, with care, probably last you the rest of your flying career.
parabellum is offline  
Old 8th Jun 2013, 01:09
  #8 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Hong Kong
Posts: 600

Interesting observations and so well put. It's refreshing to read such a lucid, balanced, unbigoted post. For what it's worth, I've never heard the native language used by ATC to local carriers in any other country. Well, apart from France, Italy, Japan, Korea, Indonesia, Philippines, India, Russia, Thailand, Vietnam and, of course, Australia.

Steve the Pirate is offline  
Old 8th Jun 2013, 01:09
  #9 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Where You Aren't
Posts: 506
I wasn't aware that we could use personal headsets. I'm off to the store to get my Sennheiser now!
Oval3Holer is offline  
Old 8th Jun 2013, 01:48
  #10 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Hong Kong
Posts: 600
Personal headsets

This one has its own radar and should allow relief under the MEL:

This one has the EGPWS mounted on top:

But probably the most appropriate for Boeing pilots is:

Steve the Pirate is offline  
Old 8th Jun 2013, 02:31
  #11 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: Hong Kong
Posts: 296
unintelligible verbal barbed wire
ha,ha: LongTimeInCX - you've nailed it with that description - I can feel the pain in my ears now...
wheels up is offline  
Old 8th Jun 2013, 03:00
  #12 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Out there
Posts: 291
CANNOT. have your own headset!
Baywatcher is offline  
Old 8th Jun 2013, 06:27
  #13 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Hong Kong
Posts: 285
STP..do you have an image a
for headsets appropriate for bus drivers??
Pucka is offline  
Old 8th Jun 2013, 07:49
  #14 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Brexitland
Posts: 1,123

If the problem is peculiar to the Boeing, why don't they have to use headsets everywhere?
Surely, it doesn't make sense that the 'muting' only happens over China. We never used to use the interphone to talk to each other anyway - who's brilliant idea was that?
Arfur Dent is offline  
Old 8th Jun 2013, 08:41
  #15 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: SE Asia
Posts: 194
Careful. - you can't use your personal headset on HK registered aircraft. The headset is certified as if it was an integral part of the ship. You replace that headset with your own Sennheiser and you have voided the Airworthiness Certificate of the jet.
Ridiculous but true.
freightdog188 is offline  
Old 8th Jun 2013, 09:33
  #16 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Not in a Bus
Posts: 325
Problem with an oversized Head??

This should stretch things to fit.
White None is offline  
Old 8th Jun 2013, 14:36
  #17 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Hong Kong
Posts: 600
Pucka, not technically a headset but you get the meaning:

Steve the Pirate is offline  
Old 8th Jun 2013, 17:37
  #18 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: England
Age: 59
Posts: 9

For the avoidance of confusion, the headset may be worn over or under the hat. And the headset will probably be worn as frequently as the hat.
Alpor is offline  
Old 9th Jun 2013, 05:42
  #19 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Hong Kong
Posts: 285
STP..brilliant!! I can just about get that under my new hat I guess..baring in mind it looks a little like the old Aeroflot hats of the 70's...
Pucka is offline  
Old 9th Jun 2013, 05:56
  #20 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Not in a Bus
Posts: 325
Airbus Matching Capt+F/O, Combo Hats and Earphones

Might leave some more cash for next years bonus?

(STP, your serve)
White None is offline  

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