Identifying an overflying aircraft at night

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Don't know if anyone can help with this, but there's a piston-engine aircraft (sounds quite large) that overflies where I live (south Cheshire) heading west every Wednesday (I think!) just before midnight and I was wondering, would there be any way of identifying it? Bit of an odd question, I know!

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Profile picture for user Giblets

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Most likely a cargo type (some of them fly the postal route to NI, and use old DC-4s and the like)., think sites like flight tracker may be able to help

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Be very surprised if it was a DC-4! :D;)

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It would be wonderful if it was a DC-4!

Mr Kilkenny, I know exactly what you mean. These aircraft fly at very high altitudes and their much lower airspeed is very noticeable.

There are a few Russian prop transports that fly about, or they could be military aircraft possibly (and, if they are, I doubt tracking websites would be much use).

Wouldn't it be fun if they were TU-95 Bear bombers buzzing our airspace, as they have been known to in the past? Mr Putin, if you are going to do that, just say when and where so I can have a pair of binoculars at the ready.:)

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Some years ago, we used to hear the good old Air Atlantique DC6 most week nights, alas no more. I can't think of anyone in Europe, who would be operating a large piston transport these days. Is there anyone still operating DC3s on revenue flights at the moment? I don't know the present status of the Atlantic Cargo ones these days.

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'Propliner' didn't have any space in the latest issue for Independant News so can't answer the possibility of a DC3. Outside chance it could be an Antonov which used to do night freight duties? :)

Profile picture for user VeeOne

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The Antonov is a turboprop and they don't sound like piston engined types, more like C-130s. Sounds like a DC-3 to me. Air Atlanique used to fly newspaper flights out of Luton back in the late 1970s and the engine noise was very noticeble even ten miles away at 8000 feet.

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Be very surprised if it was a DC-4! :D;)

Hah, you might be right there!

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Some years ago, we used to hear the good old Air Atlantique DC6 most week nights, alas no more. .

Going back a few years, I think that flew out of Southend a few times, on early morning flights. The noise it used to make, I thought it was coming through the bungalow, rather then flying over.

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If you can wait until Wednesday,Iwill have a look on planeplotter and see what shows up.

cheers

Shane

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Thanks everyone for the responses. Let me know if you find anything Shane!

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Going back a few years, I think that flew out of Southend a few times, on early morning flights. The noise it used to make, I thought it was coming through the bungalow, rather then flying over.

Oh, but what a lovely sound it was:) We have occasionally heard, very late at night, the Ruby Aviation An12 at high level over us, but it has a very unique high pitched drone sound to it. It always shows up on Flightradar24. It will be interesting to see what the answer to this mystery will be.

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It would be wonderful if it was a DC-4!

Mr Kilkenny, I know exactly what you mean. These aircraft fly at very high altitudes and their much lower airspeed is very noticeable.

There are a few Russian prop transports that fly about, or they could be military aircraft possibly (and, if they are, I doubt tracking websites would be much use).

Wouldn't it be fun if they were TU-95 Bear bombers buzzing our airspace, as they have been known to in the past? Mr Putin, if you are going to do that, just say when and where so I can have a pair of binoculars at the ready.:)

-- My mate flew on the Nimrods at Kinloss before their retirement and said it was frightening what visits our seas/airspace. Tu-95's and Russian subs and were talking monthly visits at times though mainly 'friendly' hellos nowadays.

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Back in the mid 80s, whilst on holiday in Cyprus visiting a serviceman friend of mine, we saw one of those beasts contrailing up from the south, over the Med, you could hear it coming for miles It was a 'twitchey' few days that week, in the Eastern Med, as the then Egyptian President, Sadat was assassinated. I doubt the two things were connected, but you never know;)

Profile picture for user MANAIRPORTMAD!!

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Due to being nocturnal ;) I see on flightradar24 an Atlantic BAe ATP flying over quite a bit?

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Atlantic Airlines flight NPT502 ATP G-BTPH passed over Cheshire at approx 12.30-45 haeding for Dublin/Isle of Man

cheers

Shane

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The Atlantic ATP would seem to fit the bill alright.

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I was thinking ATP as well. There's a few of them flying about during the night.

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An ATP? It's a turbo-prop aircraft, isn't it? If that's what it was, apologies for mis-identifying what I heard as piston-engined. I confess I was hoping for something a bit more exotic!

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The trouble is that night time freight flights bring in all kinds of things to the UK. Anything from An12's and ATP's to Swearingen Metro's and Shorts 360's. Even smaller types like Beech C90's do cargo runs at night.