Posted: March 22, 2016
A couple of weeks ago, the friend that I organized the Iran tour with received an invitation to participate in an aviation memorabilia show at Nagoya Centrair airport to promote the Iran tour and also to sell some goods. After a bit of discussions, we decided to take the chance to promote our upcoming tour. Besides participating in the show, we also managed to do some spotting at Centrair airport resulting in photographing not only the first 787 prototype, but also the Dreamlifter. But more about that below…
Quick Spotting Before the Show
The show was held on March 20th from 10AM until 3PM. We decided to go by car, and so after an overnight drive, we arrived at the airport and unloaded all the promotion materials and goods for sale.
Before the show started, we prepared the tables, but we also did a quick trip to the observation deck as the Finnair flight was operated by an A330 in special colors.
We were also surprised to see a Cathay A340 taxiing for take-off, and of course we could not leave without taking a picture.
We got back to the hall where the show was held about five minutes after 10, and the hall was already crowded.
The rest of the day, we spent enjoying introducing our tour, selling aviation goods ranging from amenity kits to safety cards, and just meeting other aviation enthusiasts in general.
After the show, as we were tired following the overnight drive, we had a quick dinner at the airport and headed straight to our hotel.
Almost Missing the “Jimbei” 737 Completely
The next day, we were planning to leave the hotel early to photograph the 7:40AM departure of JTA’s special colors. Unfortunately, due to being tired, we arrived at the airport a couple of minutes too late, and the aircraft was already taxiing for take-off.
As such, we were not able to get a shot of it taxiing by, but at least we managed to snap it on the runway.
The next 30 minutes, we spent on the very windy deck taking pictures of the traffic. After ANA’s green DHC-8 departed, we decided to leave the deck for a bit and head to the perimeter.
Nagoya: The Land of Dreamliners
The reason we went to the perimeter was “N787BA” – the first Boeing 787 prototype. It was donated by Boeing to Nagoya in 2015, since Japan has played a crucial role in developing the aircraft and since major parts of the aircraft are manufactured around Nagoya.
Currently, the aircraft is parked a ten minute walk from the terminal, and can be photographed through the mesh fence in the morning.
While photographing it, we noticed wing parts sitting outside next to the parking spot dedicated to the Dreamlifter – a 747 specially modified to carry 787 parts from across the world to the US for final assembly.
…and indeed, when we checked FR24, we found the Dreamlifter there, heading towards Nagoya!
After taking enough photos of the 787, we headed back to the deck to wait for the arrival of the Dreamlifter, and also for the departure of a Cathay Pacific A340 in OneWorld colors.
While Cathay was supposed to depart before Dreamlifter’s arrival, it ended up being the other way around.
First, however, some regular traffic.
Before long, we could spot the very distinctly shaped aircraft approaching runway 36 of Centrair airport.
After touching down, it passed in front of the deck on its way to its parking spot.
As we wanted to see the aircraft open itself (to fit the large parts, the aircraft “folds” itself), we photographed some regular traffic including the not-so-regular Cathay OneWorld A340 for a bit.
Finally, vehicle attached to the powerless Dreamlifter door started moving and turning the aircraft into an L-shape.
Once the door was open, we left the deck to head back towards Tokyo.
Green Post Boxes on Our Way Home
A little bonus to end with.
On our way back we made a quick stop in Nishio close to Nagoya that is famous for its “matcha” green tea.
Due to this, some of the town’s post boxes are painted green instead of the usual red.