I understand it, I just don't get it...

Discussion in 'Hangar Talk' started by Shawn, Jun 18, 2022.

  1. Shawn

    Shawn En-Route

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    Plane spotting.

    I understand the appreciation of aviation and even hanging out at an airport once in while to observe the comings and goings...but I don't get those that take it to the level of commercial airport "plane spotting" as a descriptive hobby or even "profession"...I mean there is literally an app that tells you what the plane is and where it is coming and going.

    There is now a Youtube Live Stream of LAX so you can "Plane Spot" from the comfort of your parent's basement...

    I mean are there also people that stand on freeway overpasses and are like "ooooooh, a 4Runner, get a picture!"?
     
  2. Rockymountain

    Rockymountain Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Ever hung out with birders? Feathers vs. flaps??? Same thing I guess
     
  3. dans2992

    dans2992 En-Route PoA Supporter

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    Usually it’s folks who aren’t pilots themselves, either because they live in the EU, where it’s become unaffordable…. Or some other reason.
     
  4. Shawn

    Shawn En-Route

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    Even bird watching I get...there is the lure of the "hunt" and what you will find out in the wild. With planes there is literally an app for that with all the info.
     
  5. luvflyin

    luvflyin Touchdown! Greaser!

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    The spot below was a hangout back around the 70’s - 90’s, maybe earlier, when USAF Plant 42, KPMD, was in it’s hey-dey testing and building all kinds of cool planes. There were crowds there all the time. Roach Coaches were there to feed the people. There was a mobile pilot supply shop there sometimes.

    upload_2022-6-18_21-32-49.png

    upload_2022-6-18_21-35-5.png
     
  6. TomF

    TomF Filing Flight Plan

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    I know there are big train fans. Some call them foamers.
     
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  7. ktup-flyer

    ktup-flyer En-Route

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    Mostly exotics, but yes.
     
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  8. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    You know, those 4 Runners are getting rare, just sayin'
     
  9. RyanB

    RyanB Super Administrator Management Council Member PoA Supporter

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    Haha, ya I get it, it’s a little cheesy, although I will say I watched that LAX live stream a couple times and it’s pretty cool!
     
  10. Jim K

    Jim K En-Route

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    Yep...railfans, farm equipment enthusiasts... there's people into everything. Heck I spent two hours looking at guns yesterday.
     
  11. Walboy

    Walboy Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I know people who spend an entire day sitting on the couch watching football on tv
     
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  12. RudyP

    RudyP Cleared for Takeoff

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    This. If I drive by Alice’s Restaurant in Woodside on a weekend, there is almost always some people taking pics and videos. I’m not on social media (instagram, tic toc, etc) but I bet that’s where they end up.
     
  13. Whitney

    Whitney Ejection Handle Pulled

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    I don't get it either, but then I don't understand the alure of most hobbies.
     
  14. mcdewey

    mcdewey Pre-takeoff checklist PoA Supporter

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    My son did this during his teens. He hung out with people from all over the world, including one time a bunch from England at the In-and-Out at LAX. He sold a couple photos as covers to aviation magazines and gave them as gifts to various folks. It was a great hobby and until he got his driver's license, we'd go watch with him. Planes are cool.
     
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  15. Brad W

    Brad W Cleared for Takeoff

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    I...almost sort of get it....maybe....
    but not saying the idea interests me.....
    In the past I have been sort of a certification collector.
    went for my instrument and multi-engine ratings even though I really had no compelling need
    I didn't just get open water scuba certified.... I've got a huge collection of scuba certificate cards, more that I can list off the top of my head
    sometimes when i get an idea about collecting data about some trivial thought or idea, I tend to get overboard on the data....
    something I can't explain about the satisfaction of getting the data...Sometimes getting all the blanks filled in never ends.
    Maybe its like that for some people
     
  16. Dan Thomas

    Dan Thomas Final Approach

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    I once received a QSL card from a British guy who had come to Canada on vacation. He was a radio freak, and he went up on some mountain and recorded as many radio stations as he could and sent QSL cards to them all, requesting verification of his find. He had picked up our airport's 25-watt NDB some 100 miles away, pretty good considering our airplanes couldn't pick it up from more than 30 miles out. I signed the card and mailed it to him in England. I imagine he had a wall plastered with these things.
     
  17. Dan Thomas

    Dan Thomas Final Approach

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    I know people who spend hours at their computers arguing with other pilots.
     
  18. OkieFlyer

    OkieFlyer En-Route

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    I have a relative who is a Lt. Col in the USAF, has been flying C5s and KC-46 for the last 20 years, and is a plane spotter.

    I'm kind of an airplane nerd/nut, but I personally don't get any satisfaction from commercial jets. Most of the big busses all look basically the same to me, and they are merely landing and taking off as comfortably for the passengers as they can, so any particularly impressive performance goes unseen. I do, however, get a kick out of the videos of big iron landing in extreme crosswinds or landing at very challenging airports. Otherwise, I'd rather look at a little Globe Swift, a warbird, a Lancair, a Mixmaster, a homebuilt, etc. While passenger jets are incredibly impressive machines, the sheer number of them and the routine of their operation makes them pretty boring to me.
     
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  19. Dan Thomas

    Dan Thomas Final Approach

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    The only fascinating thing about them is the fact that air can be manipulated to lift those monsters far into the sky.

    People who are afraid of airline flying should be shown Planefinder.net. Thousands of airliners in the air, constantly, and how often do we hear of an accident?

    upload_2022-6-21_9-14-16.png
     
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  20. weilke

    weilke Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Obsessive hobbyists.

    My grandma's house was close to the local commercial airport. It was fun to bike over to the airport fence and watch the comings and goings. That's when I encountered the spotters the first time. Thousands of $$ in tele lenses, comfy folding chairs and a scanner for the airport frequency. Odd ducks.

    Very similar to rail fans or the folks who obsess about tugboats.
     
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  21. Whitney

    Whitney Ejection Handle Pulled

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    Deleted.
     
  22. Brad W

    Brad W Cleared for Takeoff

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    Last year I was stuck home sick for a few days, bored out of my mind....got sucked into a rabbit hole on youtube of people sitting with a camera at an inlet spotting boats.
    Same silly sort of thing I suppose.... it is odd isn't it, what the human mind will do to occupy time?

    all very good points...except those sorts of images are only impressive because of the distorted scale. Correcting that, the picture will pretty much look like there's not a plane in the sky.....like google map "satelite" view...and that doesn't fit the narrative at all...but it's more accurate.
    I'm sure you've all done this too, but many many times I lay back looking at the cloudless blue on a clear day not seeing or hearing a single aircraft in my entire field of view and think what a shame it is that nobody is up there enjoying that huge piece of sky!
     
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  23. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Bro do you even lift
    Looking at that picture makes you wonder why there aren't more midair collisions.
     
  24. Dan Thomas

    Dan Thomas Final Approach

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    Just go to that site and zoom in. The earth and airspace get larger while the airplanes stay the same size, and it doesn't look so crowded. Besides, those airplanes are all under ATC control.
     
  25. a572mike

    a572mike Cleared for Takeoff

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    Exgf before my wife was a birder. Lots of extra craziness comes along with that hobby.
     
  26. Pugs

    Pugs Cleared for Takeoff PoA Supporter

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    you have a 1000 posts here in 6 weeks. Maybe you have a hobby and don’t know it? :D
     
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  27. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Bro do you even lift
    Sigh. I was trying to make a funny. I'll let my day job know they need to keep my position open for me.
     
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  28. Mtns2Skies

    Mtns2Skies Final Approach

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    ATM Machine
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  29. Whitney

    Whitney Ejection Handle Pulled

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    Excluding parked aircraft on the ground, it's very rare to have another plane within 25 miles of me, much less at the same altitude.

    The odds of me being in a mid air collision, are about the same as Elvis Presley buying the neighboring farm, me winning $500,000,000 and giving birth to quintuplets tomorrow.
     
  30. eman1200

    eman1200 Touchdown! Greaser! PoA Supporter

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    Bro do you even lift
    or why literally everyone's plane is yellow.
     
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  31. Checkout_my_Six

    Checkout_my_Six Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I wonder what all these boats are doing? o_O boats.jpg
     
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  32. Whitney

    Whitney Ejection Handle Pulled

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    How are they not all crashing?
    They're all at exactly the same altitude!
     
  33. nauga

    nauga Administrator Management Council Member PoA Technical Administrator

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    [​IMG]

    Nauga,
    and RMI
     
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  34. KRyan

    KRyan Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I had an acquaintance that was a "train spotter" and he had a "log book" of car and engine numbers. He would check his log against the train he was observing and say "oh, last time I saw that engine it was in Nebraska in September of 1998." I expect it's the same sort of thing, comparing tail numbers to last time seen.
     
  35. Whitney

    Whitney Ejection Handle Pulled

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    Thanks for pointing out my lack of posts.
    I'll work on upping my numbers.
     
  36. luvflyin

    luvflyin Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Aw c'mon now. Ya coulda just deleted the post. You teasing us. Give it up. What had you said?
     
  37. skier

    skier Line Up and Wait

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    Where do you live that you can go more than 10 minutes without hearing an aircraft fly overhead? I’m not sure I’ve ever experienced that.
     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2022
  38. mcdewey

    mcdewey Pre-takeoff checklist PoA Supporter

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    It obviously isn't in the Baltimore-Annapolis-DC area. :)
     
  39. mcdewey

    mcdewey Pre-takeoff checklist PoA Supporter

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    This is a really cool picture!
     
  40. Whitney

    Whitney Ejection Handle Pulled

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    You mean more than 1 a month right ;)