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Project Overview

How we'll transform a retired Boeing 747-400 into a home and shared community resource.
Updated 16 October 2018

I wish to site an intact, except sans engines, retired Boeing 747-400 aircraft near Miyazaki to serve as my private home.  But the aircraft will provide frequent support for the community as well in the form of substantial, friendly, and spiritually intimate ordinary tours for both adults and student groups (very likely a nearly daily activity as occurs at my 727 home when I'm in America), special events such as unique classes or social gatherings, easy press access, and my favorite, Concert on a Wing events, ultimately complete with choreographed aircraft illumination systems, including special dynamic adornments.

(My dream is for Yuko Pomily-san to perform on 'her' wing, finishing deeply into dusk in a flourish with a robust rendition of "Arigatou" complete with 747 system choreography, perhaps to become an iconic Nippon experience.  And Seiko-san's in my heart too of course...)

This project will leverage important lessons learned from the fundamental mistakes I made with my 727 project.  The most serious of which was involving a salvage company, a partnership which I now recognize was wholly unwise.  Instead this will be a full bird project except that the engines, with are normally worth about $1 M each, will be removed (but the engine cowlings will be retained).  Otherwise the aircraft will remain thoroughly intact and functional even though it will never fly again.  (The engines will be retained too if they've reached full retirement age and thus have very little value, but that's unlikely.)  Some seat rows may be removed or moved into the cargo bays as well.  No other component removal will occur at any time.  And only minimal alterations and additions will be made to the aircraft in the home transformation process - only those necessary to add domestic electrical outlets (but using safe and modern IEC-320 type receptacles such as found on current IT equipment - no obsolete NEMA type will be utilized), full capacity 60 Hz to 400 Hz power converters, at least two shower rooms and associated plumbing, and a minimal array of domestic appliances and furnishings.  And most native incandescent or florescent bulbs will be replaced with 28 Vdc capable COB LED bulbs (using the original sockets of course), and the 400 Hz florescent lamp electrical buses will be rerouted to 28 Vdc.

The idea is to retain the full scintillating aerospace technology core spirit and environment of the aircraft and allow it to wholly dominate.  So the aircraft will be modified only minimally.  Many passenger seats will likely be removed or relocated to create a far more spacious interior experience, and a modest few new furnishings will be installed.  But otherwise it will look and feel primarily like the usual aircraft most of us board from time to time.

I feel very strongly about this project - I'm convinced there's a need to efficiently execute a compelling model which demonstrates far better use of these magnificent aerospace clippers and believe such a model is long overdue.  And I'm fortunate to likely have sufficient personal financial resources to complete the endeavor.  But in an effort to extend the vision to additional aircraft homes I'd like to explore productive partnerships to expand participation and goals.  I hope this project will lead to something of a global human epiphany - a common realization that there are far better and surprisingly straightforward means to utilize a truly great resource which we've been woefully wasting for decades.

Due to the important cultural and historic connection I'm very disappointed to be too late to execute this project with an ANA or JAL 747-400.  However one last Nippon 747-400 aircraft might remain and I'd be thrilled to pursue an opportunity to preserve it, and thus am eager to chat with anyone about such a possibility.  If there is to be a chance to utilize this aircraft the process will of course have to be managed with a great deal of deft and an unusually high level of respect even by the lofty standards of this land.

But this first project will utilize a 747-400 from another country, and one has been allocated and will be procured soon.  And we won't preserve the original airline's livery in this project per the airline's preference.  But we're eager to consider a mutually beneficial partnership which trades favorable aircraft acquisition terms for the substantial promotional benefits the firm would realize from this or future projects at any time.  And for this project a possible option is to render the livery of a Nippon airline such as JAL, ANA, or Solaseed Air (but with clear open disclosure of the true history of the aircraft).

If a commercial livery is utilized it would remain the material property of the represented airline to retain or remove at any time wholly at its sole discretion.  If we execute our projects very well such partnerships might prove to be highly beneficial for both parties.  So I'm very eager to chat with any airline which might wish to explore this possibility.  My sense is that the airline would derive a great deal of very positive global notoriety from the project - perhaps more than the retirement value of the aircraft.  So I encourage all airlines which will retire 747-400 aircraft to consider this option very carefully.  For more about this please see A Pitch to Airlines With Retiring 747-400s.

Bruce Campbell

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