Author Topic: Adding New Types To The Fleet (E.g. Aerosoft Airbus X)?  (Read 24685 times)

Elijah Hoyt

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Re: Adding New Types To The Fleet (E.g. Aerosoft Airbus X)?
« Reply #30 on: Sun 21 Sep 2014, 18:30 »
It looks now like the Aerosoft A319/18 will be purchasable as a standalone, if that has any sway on your model choice. I know that expanding out EGLC ops right now is not a high priority, but it sure would be fun to do steep approaches in an Intercity painted baby bus!

Dean Farley

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Re: Adding New Types To The Fleet (E.g. Aerosoft Airbus X)?
« Reply #31 on: Mon 22 Sep 2014, 19:05 »
Flying the bus into EGLC would be fantastic.  However I do fully understand that the undertaking of adding new aircraft and routes is no small task.


I have just recently passed my student exam for VATSIM ground control at EGLC, so with the new bus released I should see a bit more traffic while people are trying out those steep approaches.

Chris Liu

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Re: Adding New Types To The Fleet (E.g. Aerosoft Airbus X)?
« Reply #32 on: Mon 22 Sep 2014, 20:50 »
I looked at ServInfo earlier and there were 3x A318 sat at EGLC (which is more than real life)! I can't see the fuss lasting long though, it flies pretty much the same as the larger and more popular A319.

Sergio De Ceglie

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Re: Adding New Types To The Fleet (E.g. Aerosoft Airbus X)?
« Reply #33 on: Tue 23 Sep 2014, 00:57 »
I have just recently passed my student exam for VATSIM ground control at EGLC, so with the new bus released I should see a bit more traffic while people are trying out those steep approaches.

Congrat's on the rating Dean. I'll keep an eye out for you when I'm on Vatsim.

Cheers,
Serge

Paul Regimbal

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Re: Adding New Types To The Fleet (E.g. Aerosoft Airbus X)?
« Reply #34 on: Wed 24 Sep 2014, 22:03 »
I looked at ServInfo earlier and there were 3x A318 sat at EGLC (which is more than real life)! I can't see the fuss lasting long though, it flies pretty much the same as the larger and more popular A319.


All things considered though, A318 can make it in and out of EGLC fairly easily.  Doesn't make sense to operate this solely out of all hubs, but it is an approved aircraft to land in EGLC and is probably a better option to the E190.


A318 still provides a 50% load increase over the Dash8 which would allow us to reduce frequency of flights out of EGLC in favour of adding new routes.  I can see Chris cringing inside at the thought because the A318 does not sport RR or IAE engines.


A320 could be operated out of all other hubs as a more revenue efficient aircraft.

Sergio De Ceglie

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Re: Adding New Types To The Fleet (E.g. Aerosoft Airbus X)?
« Reply #35 on: Thu 25 Sep 2014, 01:24 »
A318 still provides a 50% load increase over the Dash8 which would allow us to reduce frequency of flights out of EGLC in favour of adding new routes.  I can see Chris cringing inside at the thought because the A318 does not sport RR or IAE engines.

A320 could be operated out of all other hubs as a more revenue efficient aircraft.

Out of interest, would operating a mixed A318/A320 fleet cause any issues?  The A320 family (ie. A318/319/320/321) hold the same pilot type rating so a pilot can fly any of the models however from an operations side of things is the difference that significant to cause problems (eg. maintenance, spares, etc)?

Sorry, I don't mean to flog a dead horse here, just a pleb pilot trying to get an understanding of operational matters. Also, a couple of years ago I flew from London City to Florence (LIRQ) on an RJ85 so I'm thinking of all the great routes that could open up with jet operations out of EGLC (and the other hubs of course).  :)

Cheers,
Serge

Paul Regimbal

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Re: Adding New Types To The Fleet (E.g. Aerosoft Airbus X)?
« Reply #36 on: Thu 25 Sep 2014, 02:00 »
Out of interest, would operating a mixed A318/A320 fleet cause any issues?  The A320 family (ie. A318/319/320/321) hold the same pilot type rating so a pilot can fly any of the models however from an operations side of things is the difference that significant to cause problems (eg. maintenance, spares, etc)?

Sorry, I don't mean to flog a dead horse here, just a pleb pilot trying to get an understanding of operational matters. Also, a couple of years ago I flew from London City to Florence (LIRQ) on an RJ85 so I'm thinking of all the great routes that could open up with jet operations out of EGLC (and the other hubs of course).  :)

Cheers,
Serge


I don't personally see any real issue with operating the two aircraft in tandem for the purposes of training and pilot operation. 


From a practical stand point, it would make one more livery for to paint.  It would be one more aircraft to process through Chris' exhausting scheduling process.


I agree, having jet operations is an exciting thought as it would give a lot more options for routes and destinations.  Don't worry, Chris and the rest of the management are sold on adding a jet for sure.


From the business side of things, they are more money to operate which is a consideration.  Jet operated routes are more lucrative if you can maintain a certain seat sold ratio which from our view point we just need to buy into the idea that how we are scheduling it is viable as we don't have a real means to measure by (no virtual passengers  ;D ). This is where it becomes tricky as you don't want to be too big as it can lead to a lot of empty seats in a flight.


Having the A320s would be a no-brainer but I'm not sure Chris is sold on the idea of having A318s in the fleet because they are very niche type aircraft that are typically only viable in its niche (hence why so few have sold).  I remember that when the A318 was first released, the engines were so very underwhelming compared to the A319.  With the newer PW engines it should have a lot more pep in the climb and go-arounds.

Chris Liu

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Re: Adding New Types To The Fleet (E.g. Aerosoft Airbus X)?
« Reply #37 on: Thu 25 Sep 2014, 09:25 »
Operationally mixing A318s with A320s is very easy, as they have a lot of common parts, a common type rating and similar performance. However, as Paul mentioned, there is a reason only 50ish A318s are in airline service.

When Airbus developed the A318 they relied on airports treating it as a regional jet, oil prices remaining steady and the PW6000 engine being very efficient; none of that happened and as a result A318 operating costs are similar to an A319.

The A318 and B736 have both come to be described as a "shrink too far", crippled by a superstructure designed for much higher MTOWs; the A318 and E195 are similarly sized but one is 39.5 t empty, the latter only 29 t!

Just look at British Airways for evidence, they only have 2x A318s but 17x E-jets and 44x A319s. BA knew that the cost of introducing the new E-jets type far outweighed the savings of retaining commonality with their A32S fleet; E-jets offer everything the A318 can at a fraction of the purchase and operating cost (with the notable exception of transatlantic range, which is why BA got two A318s for the LCY-JFK route. Intercity has no intention of doing longhaul from any airport though, let alone LCY).

Right now I'm busy painting and scheduling the A320s from Düsseldorf, Edinburgh and Birmingham in time for the Autumn schedule, but following that we will definitely look to deploy some jets from London City. However, I feel it would very difficult to reconcile our ethos as a highly realistic VA when operating an aircraft that's 10 tonnes heavier than it needs to be.
« Last Edit: Thu 25 Sep 2014, 11:02 by Chris Liu »

Graham Bannister

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Re: Adding New Types To The Fleet (E.g. Aerosoft Airbus X)?
« Reply #38 on: Thu 25 Sep 2014, 13:49 »
My two cents for what they are worth.
I have been flying flight sim since the days of Commodore 64 and progressed through FS4, FS9,up to FSX. I even flew on software called ATP if I remember correctly by Sublogic. In reality according to poorly kep log I have over 11,000 hours. However the very first VA I joined is Intercity. I was just never attracted to the many that have come before, no matter whether they carry big names etc.
I joined Intercity because as an airline/airport operations person for the past 30+ years, I see realism with a selected fleet that is very appropriate for the routes that are flown. I love turbo props and will always fly them. maybe I am old school. Expanding is always a good idea as it may attract new pilots to the airline from different airports and/or cities.
I just hope that we maintain the realsim and the somewhat "detailed simplicity" of Intercity if you understand what I mean.
It would be great if at sometime we could actually get a way of having financials by route and aircraft type calculated so we can perhaps make some serious judgement calls on such. e.g. are there any routes that perhaps noone ever flies or maybe only fly once or twice over a period of time.
All in all I like it the way it is but of course still appreciate he need for upgrade along the way.
Thanks

Yves Kaulitz

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Re: Adding New Types To The Fleet (E.g. Aerosoft Airbus X)?
« Reply #39 on: Thu 25 Sep 2014, 15:44 »
As far as I know BA operates the A318 in an all business class layout and they even have to refuel at Shannon before they move on to JFK. Taking off from EGLC is only possible at the lowest take off weight, without cargo, only a few passengers and almost no fuel!
To me it wouldn't make sense to operate the A318 out of EGLC. Maybe not even at all. As Chris stated, the real life operating cost of an A318 are far too high compared to the size of the aircraft.

Chris Hulme

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Re: Adding New Types To The Fleet (E.g. Aerosoft Airbus X)?
« Reply #40 on: Thu 25 Sep 2014, 17:20 »
are there any routes that perhaps noone ever flies or maybe only fly once or twice over a period of time.
All in all I like it the way it is but of course still appreciate he need for upgrade along the way.
Thanks


When planning the routes, Chris does a lot of background work, calculating demand and then covering a set percentage of demand, I think this is what sets us apart from other airlines and gives us the realism. I dont see any reason why in the future we wont look to see what routes are flown and which are not when looking at expansion, as there is little point in keeping routes that nobody flys!


As far as I know BA operates the A318 in an all business class layout and they even have to refuel at Shannon before they move on to JFK. Taking off from EGLC is only possible at the lowest take off weight, without cargo, only a few passengers and almost no fuel!


Correct, thus the stop at Shannon to refuel!



To me it wouldn't make sense to operate the A318 out of EGLC. Maybe not even at all. As Chris stated, the real life operating cost of an A318 are far too high compared to the size of the aircraft.


Totally agree. BA only have 2 A318s based there, and AFAIK there are only 4 stands that can accommodate them, so in terms in realism, where would we keep ours?


Sergio De Ceglie

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Re: Adding New Types To The Fleet (E.g. Aerosoft Airbus X)?
« Reply #41 on: Fri 26 Sep 2014, 04:10 »
This really is a balancing act. We have the real world constraints Intercity is attempting to emulate, we have the limitation of our flight simulators with what *good* aircraft models are available and finally we have the consideration of the pilots along with trying to attract more of them. I'm all for realism, however when trying to emulate a real airline through the constraints of a simulator with a broad cross section of pilots I believe compromises need to be made.

Playing devil’s advocate here....  ;)

While operating the A318 out of EGLC isn't totally realistic as has been mentioned it also isn't totally unrealistic either. Sure, BA only has a couple of them and use the E-Jet instead however Air France has about 18 A318's running routes from Paris in similar lengths to what Intercity run.

Also, speaking of realism, back on page 1 Chris mentioned that the A320 may be too big an aircraft to fill. Paul touched on this again a few posts back. Is jumping in size from a Q400 to an A320 a risk? Will they be able to be filled enough to be economically viable? Perhaps starting off a little smaller, such as with an A319 may have been more realistic.

From my *limited* point of view as a pilot looking in and also thinking about what I would enjoy doing I feel an A318/319 combination would have been great with the A319 as Intercity's main narrow body operated out of all hubs except EGLC and the A318 operated out of EGLC. Sure, it's been mentioned that the A318 is a niche aircraft, however Intercity is a niche VA so I think it would have fit in nicely (perhaps even help attract more pilots too, similar to the JS41 and Dash8 attracting me here).

Advantages of this include both the A318/319 being available in a single payware package by Aerosoft that appears quite good (probably sits between the PMDG JS41 and Majestic Dash8 quality wise). It simplifies the fleet with both airframes having the same type rating so easy for pilots to learn both aircraft. No need for a completely different jet type (eg. E-Jet) just for EGLC and no need to create another London hub to use a bigger jet (as has been previously mentioned by Chris on page 1). Also, VA specific tasks, such as repaints and modifying the ACARS should be simpler with this aircraft combination rather than two completely different models.

Now, please don't take this as an objection to the current plans. I respect the decisions being made and will still enjoy the opportunity to fly the A320. I also look forward to the new schedule and new hubs in the future. Again, this is just a pilot thinking out loud and sharing what he thinks would be enjoyable for him.

Cheers,
Serge

Paul Regimbal

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Re: Adding New Types To The Fleet (E.g. Aerosoft Airbus X)?
« Reply #42 on: Fri 26 Sep 2014, 19:02 »
This is all very exciting to see the flowing of ideas from our members :)  I'm going to recap what we know so far about A318 and E190 in a more concise format since it's scattered across 3 pages at this point.


So here are a few tidbits of information:

- While intercity does cater to business class, we haven't operated exclusively business class
- A318 operated by BA serves 32 passengers all business class (32 passengers is less than 50% of the capacity of the Q400)
- A318 operated by AF serves 131 passengers all economy  ( http://www.seatguru.com/airlines/Air_France/Air_France_Airbus_A318_A.php); it is not possible to take off with this amount of weight out of EGLC; Intercity would have to limit the passengers as well (we would have to operate single class to maximize revenue - which we don't do on our existing aircraft)
- A318 Operating Empty Weight (as Chris was touching on before) is 39,500 kg (87,100 lb) while the E-190 is 28,080 kg (61,910 lb).  That means that the A318 has 29% more weight without anyone in it.  That amount of weight alone is expensive per nm to operate.
- Both aircrafts are unable to takeoff out of EGLC at max takeoff weight: A318 = 1,828 m (5,997 ft); E-190: 2,056 m (6,745 ft); EGLC rwy 09/27 = 4910.4 x 98 ft (1497 x 30 m)
- However because of the difference in OEW 11,420 kg (25,190 lb) that equals 134  theoretical passengers (at 85kg each) more that can be carried in the E190 not including fuel and luggage into the equation.  This amounts to quite a bit of maneuvering for the airline between passenger load count and range.
- E190 is more aerodynamic sporting a lower fuel burn per nm than the A318 while being able to carry more passengers.
- BA operates these aircraft with 98 seats in a 1 or 2 class configuration which is 3x the number of passengers they are able to accommodate in the A318.  This translates into a higher revenue stream with lower operating costs.  Even with the higher training costs, it appears to still be worth it in the long run to operate an E190 out of EGLC.


A newer version of this aircraft is in the works E190E2:

- which at this time appears to keep same passenger capacity while decreasing takeoff run at MTOW 1,800 m (5,900 ft).
- a flight of 500nm length with full pax (single class with 100kg pax) requires about 1,250 m (4,101 ft) of runway length (theoretically possible to take off with full aircraft at EGLC for 1h flights).
- this won't be ready for 4 more years but may be possible to retrofit existing aircraft;
- we could hold off on adding jet aircraft for 4 years out of EGLC and "save" the cost associated of buying E1 jets
- performance savings of 16% per pax from E2 to E1 jets

Curious about the destinations where the A318 operates?  Look here: http://www.routesonline.com/news/29/breaking-news/240057/where-does-the-a318-fly-march-2014-network-update/

I'm not familiar with all the destinations in those lists as far as runway length but I see a lot of large airports mentioned which would allow you to fill the A318 to a proper load to make it more viable.  That said, compared to A319 or A320 the A318 doesn't maximize the revenue per passenger per nm like the A319/A320.

A318 is not receiving a New Engine Option at least not yet.  So while E190 is receiving a revitilization, the A318 is not.  See the following links:
- http://www.airbus.com/aircraftfamilies/passengeraircraft/a320family/
- http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/airbus-could-eventually-offer-neo-version-of-a318-leahy-350386/

That is all the technical aspect of the business operations.

The only E190 payware aircraft I'm able to find online (quick search I might add, not an exhaustive search) for this aircraft is made by Wilco (http://www.wilcopub.com/simulator-add-on/e-jets-series.html).  I haven't tried this add-on but if anyone has, I would be very curious about any experiences.  It would appear that this a fair bit older dating as far back as 2008.

The new A318 payware aircraft has a lot of good reviews, and up to date textures.  Anyone that has purchased this aircraft please give us your experience of this aircraft.

Additionally, if there are any other jets on the following list:

- http://www.lcacc.org/aircraft/

Please let us know your thoughts.

My sources are:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Embraer_E-Jet_family
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Airbus_A320_family
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Embraer_E-Jet_E2_family
http://www.embraercommercialaviation.com/Pages/Ejets-190-E2.aspx
http://www.seatguru.com/airlines/Air_France/Air_France_Airbus_A318_A.php
http://www.britishairways.com/en-gb/information/about-ba/fleet-facts/airbus-318-100
http://www.routesonline.com/news/29/breaking-news/240057/where-does-the-a318-fly-march-2014-network-update/
http://www.britishairways.com/en-gb/information/about-ba/fleet-facts/embraer-190

As far as the virtual airline and realism:

We understand that sometimes certain ideals may need to be bent in the virtual world but we also founded the airline based on them and we would like to try and hold onto them wherever it makes sense.

That said, does it really make sense to operate a 32 seat A318 out of EGLC or a 98 seat E190 out of EGLC?  There is potential to increase seats from 98 by 16% to 113 in the future (all be it theoretical and 4 years out).  We do know that the A318 isn't being updated (at least no definitive news) and that 32 seats is 32 seats (all be it a Long Haul configuration).  We are not sure what a Short Haul configuration would be on an A318 but no airline has attempted to do it so we don't really know the answer to that question.  But that in itself should say something.  At least that is the thinking.

I encourage you to take a look at this link:

http://www.lcacc.org/aircraft/

See what airlines are flying out of EGLC and see what you think.

I love this dialogue about what should be done about EGLC ... keep it coming.  I just wanted to kind of want to lay the facts out a little more concise as opposed to all across 3 pages to help encourage ongoing meaningful dialogue.

Michal Rzecznik

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Re: Adding New Types To The Fleet (E.g. Aerosoft Airbus X)?
« Reply #43 on: Fri 26 Sep 2014, 23:23 »
Quote
The only E190 payware aircraft I'm able to find online (quick search I might add, not an exhaustive search) for this aircraft is made by Wilco (http://www.wilcopub.com/simulator-add-on/e-jets-series.html).  I haven't tried this add-on but if anyone has, I would be very curious about any experiences.  It would appear that this a fair bit older dating as far back as 2008.


I have E195 from http://www.feelthere.com/en/product/22_embraer-e-jets-v-2-embraer-175-and-195.html - it is newer version of this addon, and almost no difference to E190. It is often on 50% or more sale. There is CALL! - interactive checklist - maybe not FS2Crew, but still better than nothing.

Yves Kaulitz

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Re: Adding New Types To The Fleet (E.g. Aerosoft Airbus X)?
« Reply #44 on: Sat 27 Sep 2014, 07:51 »
Maybe we should not focus to much on EGLC but trying to expand the other / new hubs? If we replace the J41 / DH8 on existing routes by - let's say A319 - it would give us the possibility to relocate this "spare" aircraft to EGLC and create new routes.