English translation of the Calendar for 2021

Olav Hoel and Thore E. Winderen with the trophy “Airline of The Year 1983” onboard SK902 from New York to Oslo in February 1984. Bengt Ake Wåhlin then had the honor of bringing the trophy to Stockholm.


Well-known motif from many SAS-ticket offices. Painted by Norwegian Jørleif Uthaug in 1955 on SAS’ request. The image is based on Refsdal’s well-known school atlas, and shows SAS new DC7-C, with long-distance routes around the world.


The Koksa workshop at Fornebu in the 70’s, with a tail dock assembly that was indispensable for main overhaul of the Douglas DC9 fleet. A complete model of the assembly is on display at
the SAS Museum.


OY-KGD at Kastrup airport, one of a total of ten DC9-21 airplanes. The fuselage is similar to the DC9-10, with engines and wings like the DC9-41 model. Primarily built for operations in northern
Norway, a very potent machine.


May 17 parade in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, USA in 1968 where SAS employees at JFK airport participated. Driver William Ringh and by his side Artie Carlsson. Behind are Bjørg Garwig and Terry Foss. Photo: Andy Sharp


Advertising photo from the 60’s, here from 1st class on SAS’ first jet long-haul airplane, the Douglas DC8-33. SAS bought a total of seven of this version, and flew them until 1971.


SAS Boeing 767 on its way home from Newark to Scandinavia. Departure to the north with the well-known New York skyline in 1990s clearly visible in the evening sun. The flight time home was usually one hour shorter than westward, due to westerly winds at cruising altitude.


Afternoon meal onboard a Swedish ABA’s Douglas DC-4, sometime between 1946-1948.


SAS-decorated double-decker bus in the streets of London in the mid-80’s.
The text on the bus was “The Businessman’s Airline – Flights worldwide Via Copenhagen.”


When “OY-KPE”, Convair CV440 Metropolitan “Sune Viking” was sold to Swedish Linjeflyg in 1970, it flew with the new Swedish registration “SE-FUG” a few weeks before it was handed

SAS’s first Douglas DC10-30 “Olav Viking” in the paint hangar at McDonnel Douglas, Long Beach, USA. It entered service with SAS in October 1974, on the route CPH-JFK, with registration “LN-RKA”. Sold to Swissair in October 1989.


The SAS Museum wishes all our supporters a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Front page, upper
Douglas DC-3 “Daisy” operated by “Flying Veterans Association”, with Swedish pensioners and SAS veterans, visiting the SAS Museum in 2008. Former museum leaders Kalle Sandberg and Göran Ahblom are seen to the far right.

Boeing 747 (SK902) “Magnus Viking” at Oslo Airport Gardermoen (GEN) one early morning in the 80’s, with the mobile “RedCap” office parked by the forward passenger stairs.



SAS made extensive use of Scandinavian artists in its calendars, posters and decorations. Perhaps the most famous is the Danish painter Otto Nielsen, with his calendar pictures andposters, but Norwegian and Swedish artists were also used.

The calendar motif, February in this year’s calendar, was painted in 1955 by Norwegian artist
Jørleif Uthaug (1911-90). He was born in Brekstad, raised in Trondheim. As a young man he
was an avid amateur draftsman and interested in art. He studied art and painting, but also
technical drawing. He understands and conveys the technicalities of flying around our globe, at
the same time he shows us the life that unfolds both east, west, and south of Scandinavia. The
painting was reproduced by Esselte AB in Stockholm in size 120 x 90 cm.

Central to the picture we see the globe. Inspired by cartographer Ivar Refsdal’s projection taken
from his well-known school atlas. Around the globe we see a myriad of stars and traditional
interpretations of the constellations. Aided by traditional star-navigation, the onboard navigators
would find their way around the globe. You can see Big Dipper within Ursa Major in the northern
half, with similar constellations in the other. The poster was used as an eye-catcher in SAS
ticket offices around the world. The original painting hangs today at the SAS Museum.

DC-7C. Douglas built 121 copies of this version of the DC7. The first aircraft arrived in
Stockholm on 26 August in 56, and four more by the beginning of October, a total of 14. The
aircraft were used on shorter routes that autumn to gain experience. The first major task was to
fly 439 participants from 9 countries to the Olympic Games in Melbourne, which started on
November 22, 1956. The route was Luleå – Anchorage – Honolulu – Fiji – Melbourne. All 5 new
planes were used, and everything went smoothly.

The DC-7C was equipped with four Wright R-3350 Turbo-Compound 18-cylinder radial engines,
with an output of 3400 hp each. The cabin had a capacity of 60 to 105 passengers, depending
on the cabin version. Wingspan 38.86 m, length 34.21 m, maximum starting weight 64 864 kg,
cruising speed 570 km / h, range 7400 km with maximum payload.

Polar Path gyro. In the polar regions, magnetic compasses are useless. SAS’s chief navigator
Einar Sverre Pedersen, in collaboration with Bendix Aviation, designed a gyro system as a
replacement for magnetic compasses. The Polar Path system was then connected to the
autopilot system. It was used on all long-range flights also in areas where the compasses were
reliable since it made the navigator’s work simpler. The system was used on SAS DC6B, DC7C
and DC8. Other airlines operating in polar regions also used it.


OY-KGD, “Ubbe Viking” was the first of ten DC9-21 delivered to SAS. The airplane is a further
development of two previous DC9 models, namely the fuselage from DC9 Series 10, with wing
and engines from DC9 Series 30. But DC9-21 is in fact version four in the DC9 Series.
In the mid-60s, a need for replacement for the Caravelle airplane was realized, and both DC9-
10 and -30 were carefully evaluated. SAS’s management wanted an airplane with room for even
more passengers, fuel and cargo and submitted proposals to Douglas Corporation regarding a
further development of the DC9-30. By increasing the fuselage of -30 with 1.8m, provided space
for 125 passengers in tourist class. And that is how the DC9-40 series came about. The first
airplane was delivered at Arlanda airport on 29Feb68. SAS bought a total of 49 airplanes, the
last delivered 07Mar79.

The SAS management wanted an airplane that could operate on short runways surrounded by
high mountains, such as in northern Norway. And that the speed, comfort, and reliability of jet
transportation could be extended to communities previously served only by propeller-driven
airliners. Douglas Corporation concluded that DC9-21 would satisfy these desires. The airplane
specifications were announced in December 1966, and the first delivery was made on
December 14, 1968, when “Ubbe Viking” landed at Fornebu airport. It combines the hull of the
DC9 Series 10 with a high-lift wing designed for the Series 30. The jet propulsion is delivered by
two JT8D-11s, each with 15,000 pounds of thrust, same as the DC9-41.

The flight from Long Beach in California to Fornebu took almost three days. Departure Dec. 12,
with a stopover in Kansas City for refueling. Then to Dorval airport in Montreal where the crew
spent the night. Dec. 13 on to Søndre Strømfjord in Greenland after a stopover in Goose Bay,
Labrador. And the next day via Keflavik, Iceland to Fornebu. Total flight time, 15 hours.
All pilots assigned to DC9 duty enjoyed flying the DC9-21. The plane was easy to maneuver. At
some airports you had to fly manually to position yourself for landing and you needed engine
power to avoid the mountains around the airport after departure. The autopilot and navigation
systems were excellent. Those who flew this machine, appreciated the fact that this was a
“sporty” machine with a lot of kick in it!

“Ubbe Viking” ended her days in the US with Spirit Airlines as N125NK, and was scrapped in
December 96, after 28 years of service.


B767-300 started flying to and from Newark, New Jersey on May 1, 1989. SAS had shut down
all traffic at Kennedy Airport – JFK, and Newark – EWR was the new main base in the New York
area. And in the 1990s, the flights from EWR were performed as follows:

Before departure, the pilots were given a thorough review of the flight details by a specialist, a
flight dispatcher. He used an SAS computer in Copenhagen to construct the most economical
route to fly home. The machine was updated every six hours with the latest weather and wind
information at flight altitude, and the dispatcher entered the aircraft’s estimated departure weight
and other info. The computer was also programmed with all the relevant restrictions for the
entire route, and it then came up with a suggestion on the route one should fly, at what altitudes
and minimum amount of necessary fuel. In addition, the placement of cargo, passengers and
luggage was carefully prepared, to give the aircraft good stability and for efficient loading and
unloading. The pilots assessed the proposal and the captain signed it if it was approved. The
dispatcher then sent the agreed route to the air traffic control.

The three B767s that departed from EWR had departure times late in the afternoon and
evening. After departure from Newark, they headed northeast, usually in the direction of Boston,
while the plane climbed to a cleared flight altitude. Then the plane continued into Canada and
towards the Atlantic Ocean.

Due to very heavy traffic over the sea in the direction of Europe, the air traffic control agencies
had earlier in the day established a network of normally five routes from west to east, and with a
minimum distance between two parallel routes of 60 nautical miles, (Organized Tracks). This
route network varied from day to day based on the prevailing winds at flight altitudes. A similar
route system was established earlier in the day, to simplify traffic flow from Europe to North
America. And the rules were clear. They were valid for all traffic above flight level 200 (FL 200).
Either you followed a route 100%, or the plane had to keep at least 120 nautical miles of
separation from the nearest route, on the north side or south side of the route network. All this
was programmed into the computer in Copenhagen.

Before the aircraft entered the oceanic area, a special clearance, “Oceanic Clearance”, was
required. It had details of route, altitude, and speed (Mach number) in good time before crossing
the border into the oceanic area. Normally, this routing was in accordance with the previously
agreed route.

Even before departure from the EWR, the submitted route was entered into the aircraft’s
navigation system via a control panel. And the navigation was performed according to Newton’s
laws of inertia, via three inertial navigation systems, IRS, that cooperate and monitor
performance of each other. Prior to moving from the parking position, the aircraft’s position
coordinates were loaded into the navigation system. Then all movements of the aircraft relative
to this reference were measured by accelerometers and gyros, to continuously calculate the
position, direction and speed of the aircraft. When the aircraft flies over land, there is access to
many rangefinders, known as DME. With these signals, the navigation system can calculate its
exact position and adjust data in the inertial system, if necessary.

Over land, communication between the aircraft and the air traffic control is on regular VHF
radios. These have their limitations in that one must theoretically be able to see the receiving
station (line of sight). Over the sea, one must use shortwave radio, HF. Around the entire
Atlantic Ocean, HF radio stations have been established, that cooperate in networks.

When leaving North America, the SAS aircraft will usually have contact with Gander Radio,

which relays air traffic clearances issued by Gander Oceanic Control. The radio stations also
receive position reports from the aircraft. Every tenth degree of longitude is reported en route
eastwards. Likewise, the procedure requires these longitudes be crossed at a full latitude
number. So, after coming out over the sea, 050West becomes the first reporting, e.g.: SK908,
57North, 050West at 24, FL330, estimating 59N, 040W at 55, the wind 260 at 55, temperature
minus 54. The weather report is sent if you fly outside of Organized Tracks, likewise
pronunciation of numbers is special, one says five four not fifty-four.

On the way home over the sea, the SAS airplanes fly so far north that VHF relay stations in
Greenland and later Iceland and the Faroe Islands mostly cover the route, and the HF radio is
rarely used, but one should have it active. A special audio signal sent from the ground station
activates a warning (SELCAL), indicating the ground station wants contact with SK908.

When the airplane crosses the zero meridian, it leaves the Oceanic Control Area, and
approximately one hour remains until landing at Gardermoen. These were generally the rules
for flying east at night, similar rules apply for flying west, a few hours later.

And finally, today when flying from EWR to OSL is basically similar. Air traffic control structures
are the same as in the 90s. Communication.is primarily via data link, but HF is still required as
back up. And navigation has changed to GPS as primary means, but again, IRS systems are
utilized as back up.

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