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Homegrown Birds

The Boeing 747-212B entered service with Singapore Airlines in October 1973, spearheading SIA's entry into the big league of civil aviation. 9V-SQS lands on runway 20R of Changi Airport, wearing Singapore Airlines' former livery.

One of three Boeing 747-312 Combi in Singapore Airlines' fleet, 9V-SKP begins her roll down runway 20L of Changi Airport.

Singapore Airlines unveiled a pair of specially-painted B747-412s to launch a total revamp of her First, Raffles and new Economy classes. Inspired by the colours of a tropical sunrise, it has been lovingly dubbed the "Tropical Megatop" by aviation enthusiasts in Singapore. 9V-SPK is photographed landing at Changi on her return from London-Heathrow.

9V-SPL is the other Megatop sporting this tropical plumage.

In celebrating her Golden (50th) Anniversary in May 1997, Singapore Airlines "gift-wrapped" three aircraft types in gold ribbons. The Megatop fleet was represented by 9V-SMZ, seen here taking off from Changi Airport.

Similarly painted in the Boeing factory, B777-212ER was delivered in the midst of this Golden Jubilee celebrations, and appropriately named "Jubilee".

Not to be outdone by airliners from the Boeing stables, an Airbus A340-300E strutted out of the SIA hangar in the Golden Jubilee colours.

Not exactly anything that would qualify as a "special colour scheme" but Singapore Airlines' B747-412 (9V-SMU) holds the distinction of being the 1000th Boeing 747.

The newest bird in the Singapore Airlines fleet is a Boeing 777-312 and four machines are currently employed on routes linking Singapore to Hong Kong, Bangkok, Manila, Dubai and Istanbul.

Singapore Airlines' inaugural Boeing 777-212ER flight took off from Changi Airport for Jakarta on 15 May 1997. In spite of her long range capability, the B777-212ER is also operated on the 45-minute flight to Kuala Lumpur to take advantage of her large capacity.

The longhaul high capacity specialist in the Singapore Airlines fleet must surely be the Boeing 747-412, and 9V-SPJ is photographed landing at Changi Airport on her return from London - Heathrow.

Dubbed the BIG TOP, Singapore Airlines' Boeing 747-300 fleet has served every corners of the airline's extensive network. While two examples still with Ansett Australia continue to soldier on, the rest are headed elsewhere at an increasing rate. 9V-SKK is seen here shortly after taking on Singapore registration, having previously served as N124KK. This aircraft has since been sold to African Star Airways (ZS-OKK).

The Airbus A340-300E was ordered after Singapore Airlines cancelled a Letter of Intent to purchase the MD-11. Capable of operating nonstop year-round on the Singapore - Paris route, it is also operated on shorter routes to Bangkok and Jakarta. A newly-delivered 9V-SJN is seen here climbing into a stormy sky.

A regional workhorse for Singapore Airlines, the Airbus A310-324s of Singapore Airlines operate throughout Asia and Australasia. 9V-STT is returning to Singapore after an overnight trip to India.

Previously known as the "3TEN", the Airbus A310-222 has faithfully served Singapore Airlines (and SilkAir - albeit briefly). The only example still flying with Singapore Airlines is 9V-STL. Seen here landing at Changi Airport is 9V-STM, one of a pair of A310-222 that SilkAir had operated.

In May 1987, Singapore Airlines celebrated the 40th Anniversary of her founding by injecting a little nostalgia - in the form of a DC3 painted in Malayan Airways livery. This aircraft was chartered from Airfast of Indonesia and after the celebration, it reverted to its original livery and registration (PK-OAZ).

Taking another nostalgic look into the past, the DC-10-30 carried Singapore Airlines first trans-Pacific passengers to San Francisco on 4 April 1979. It is still the only wide-bodied trijet SIA has ever operated, although it came close to repeating it with the MD-11.

SilkAir bought a pair of Airbus A310-200 from Singapore Airlines, operating to Hangzhou in China and Kaoshiung in Taiwan. These routes proved unprofitable and both 9V-STM and 9V-STN were leased back to SIA.

The Boeing 737-300B became the workhorse of the SilkAir fleet, and is being progressively replaced by the Airbus A320. Two of these have already left to join Cameroon AL (TJ-CBH) and SATA Air Acores of Portugal.

Baby of the SilkAir fleet is a pair of Fokker 70s, operating to secondary cities in Indonesia as well as to Chiang Mai in Northern Thailand. 9V-SLK is depicted making a steep climb out of Changi Airport.

The Airbus A320 is currently being introduced into the SilkAir fleet and each delivery is matched by the departure of a Boeing 737-300B. Three are currently operating and 9V-SLA is seen here on the ramp of Changi Airport Terminal 2.


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