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Bangkok 1961 - VTBD

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Don Mueang International Airport

(From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)


See XSIMREVIEWS for their review of this airport - 26 Feb :wub:

Don Mueang International Airport

Don Mueang International Airport



Airport type Public/Military

Operator Airports of Thailand

Location Khet Don Mueang, Bangkok, Thailand

Hub for

• Thai AirAsia

• Orient Thai Airlines

• Nok Air


9 ft / 3 m


13°54′45″N 100°36′24″E




3,000m 9,840ft



Statistics (2010)


Source: Airports of Thailand

Don Mueang International Airport (Thai: ท่าอากาศยานดอนเมือง — Thai pronunciation: [dɔ̄ːn mɯ̄aŋ]) (IATA: DMK, ICAO: VTBD) is one of two international airports serving Bangkok, Thailand, the other one being Suvarnabhumi Airport. It was officially opened as a Royal Thai Air Force base on 27 March 1914, although it had been in use earlier. Commercial flights began in 1924. Don Mueang Airport closed in 2006 following the opening of Bangkok's new Suvarnabhumi Airport, before opening again after renovation on 24 March 2007.

Don Mueang was an important hub of Asia and the hub of Thai Airways International prior to its closure. At its peak, it served most air traffic for the entire continent, with 80 airlines operating 160,000 flights and handling over 38,000,000 passengers and 700,000 tons of cargo in 2005. It was then the 18th busiest airport in the world and 2nd in Asia by passenger volume.

Don Mueang is the main hub for Nok Air, Thai AirAsia and Orient Thai Airlines. All Thai Airways flights were transferred to Suvarnabhumi Airport, though the present government is urging them to return.
Don Mueang is a joint-use facility with the Royal Thai Air Force's Don Muang Royal Thai Air Force Base, and is the home of the RTAF 1st Air Division, which consists primarily of non-combat aircraft. Vibhavadi Rangsit Road is the main route linking the airport with downtown Bangkok. The Uttaraphimuk Elevated Tollway, running above Vibhavadi Rangsit Road, offers a more rapid option for getting into the city and connects to Bangkok's inner city expressway network. Originally, the only access was by rail service connecting with Hua Lamphong Railway Station in the center of Bangkok. The train station is across the highway and is linked with the airport by a pedestrian bridge. An RTAF golf course is located between the two runways. The course has no separation from the runway, and golfers are held back by a red light whenever planes land. Many Bangkok BMTA bus lines stop around the airport, including lines no.29 from Thammasat University and Rangsit to Victory Monument and Hua Lamphong Railway Station, 59 from Rangsit to Sanam Luang, 95 Kor. from Rangsit to Bang Kapi, 187 from Klong 3 to Sipaya, 356 Green Line From Pak Kret to Don Mueang and Saphan Mai, 356 Red Line from Saphan Mai to Pak Kret, 504 from Rangsit to Bangkok Bridge, 510 from Thammasat University to Victory Monument, 538 from Techno Thanyaburi via Don Mueang Tollway to Ramathibodi Hospital and Priest Hospital, 554 from Rangsit via motorway to Suvarnabhumi Airport and 555 from Rangsit via Vibhavadi Rangsit and Army Reserve Force Students (Ror Dor) Center to Suvarnabhumi Airport.


Thai Airways International planes at Don Mueang

Don Muang airfield was the second established in Thailand, after Sa Pathum, which is now Sa Pathum horse racing course. The first flights to Don Muang were made on March 8, 1914 and involved the transfer of aircraft of the Royal Thai Air Force. Three years earlier, Thailand had sent three army officers to France to train as pilots. On completion of their training in 1911, the pilots were authorized to purchase four Breguets and four Nieuports, which formed the basis of the Royal Thai Air Force.

Commercial service to Don Muang began in 1924. The first commercial flight was an arrival by KLM.

In 1933, the airfield was the scene of heavy fighting between royalists and government forces during the Boworadet Rebellion. The airfield was used by the occupying Japanese during World War II, and was bombed and strafed by Allied aircraft on several occasions.

During the Vietnam War, Don Muang was a major command and logistics hub of the United States Air Force.

Before the opening of Suvarnabhumi, the airport used the IATA airport code BKK and the name was spelled Don Muang. After Suvarnabhumi opened for commercial flights, the spelling was changed and as Don Mueang it now uses the airport code DMK, though it still retains the ICAO airport code VTBD. The traditional spelling is still used by many airlines and by most Thais.


The night of September 27–28, 2006 was the official end of operations at Don Mueang airport.

The last commercial flights were:

• Domestic departure: Thai Airways TG 124 to Chiang Mai at 22:15 (coincidentally, when Thai moved domestic operations back to Suvarnabhumi again on 28 March 2009, their last departure was also a 22:15 flight to Chiang Mai)

• International arrival: Kuwait Airways from Jakarta at 01:30[2]

• Domestic arrival: TG 216 from Phuket at 23:00

• International departure: Although scheduled for Kuwait Airways KU 414 to Kuwait at 02:50,[3] Qantas flight QF302 to Sydney, originally scheduled for 18:00, was delayed for more than 9 hours before finally taking off at 03:12, about 10 minutes after the Kuwait flight. Qantas claimed that QF302 was an extra flight.[4]


Although initially deserted by commercial carriers upon the opening of the Suvarnabhumi Airport, the higher costs of the new airport to operators as well as safety concerns over cracked runways at the new airport caused many to seek a return to Don Mueang. In particular, low-cost airlines have led demands for reopening of the airport. Airports of Thailand released a report at the end of 2006 which furthered this effort, proposing it as a way to avoid or delay second-stage expansion which had been planned for Suvarnbhumi.[5]
On 30 January 2007, the Ministry of Transport recommended temporarily reopening Don Mueang while touch up work process on some taxiways at Suvarnabhumi proceeds. The recommendation was subject to approval by the government's executive Cabinet. On March 25, 2007, the airport officially reopened for some domestic flights.


This is a CalClassics.com conversion, and permission to convert has come from Wolfgang Gersch, Tom Gibson and Jaap Baare, the joint designers.

Other thanks must be given to Jacques Brault and Pedrovl for use of their vintage prop liners. Permissions obtained.

The wonderful Overlay Editor came from Marginal, and WED was also used - thanks Laminar team

A particular mention to DKM who has supported me with actions and words - many many thanks.

OPENSCENERY X has been used, thanks

If I should have included a mention but missed you, PM me and I will include you in the credits


Unzip, place in your custom scenery file and away you go

Final thoughts ;)

I created a much brighter, well lit airport with many bells and whistles, but these were stripped out after lengthy discussions with Wolfgang. Bangkok in 1961 was just not that modern. Also, the aircraft are correctly placed at 45 degrees nose out on the apron as per 1961 gate instructions. So pushback is not a problem. I understand that the runway did not have centre lights - nor did the aircraft have apron parking strips, these I thought did not ruin the overall effect. I thought this would be a simple conversion to do, but getting the 1961 details as accurate as possible doubled the time spent on the conversion. Sometimes less is more?

I hope you enjoy this as much as I did in making it.


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