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Boeing 747 Recycled Into a Private Residence

CmdrTaco posted more than 3 years ago | from the would-you-like-to-see-my-cockpit dept.

Earth 239

Ponca City writes "Nicholas Jackson writes in the Atlantic about a woman who requested only curvilinear/feminine shapes for her new home and has purchased an entire Boeing 747-200. They transported it by helicopter to her 55-acre property in the remote hills of Malibu and after deconstructing it, had all 4,500,000 pieces put back together to form a main house and six ancillary structures including a meditation pavilion, an animal barn, and an art studio building. 'The scale of a 747 aircraft is enormous — over 230 feet long, 195 feet wide and 63 feet tall with over 17,000 cubic feet of cargo area alone and represents a tremendous amount of material for a very economical price of less than $50,000,' writes Architect David Hertz. 'In researching airplane wings and superimposing different airplane wing types on the site to scale, the wing of a 747, at over 2,500 sq. ft., became an ideal configuration to maximize the views and provide a self supporting roof with minimal additional structural support needed.' Called the 'Wing House,' as a structure and engineering achievement, the aircraft encloses an enormous amount of space using the least amount of materials in a very resourceful and efficient manner, and the recycling of the 4.5 million parts of this 'big aluminum can' is seen as an extreme example of sustainable reuse and appropriation. Interestingly enough, the architects had to register the roof of the house with the FAA so pilots flying overhead would not mistake it as a downed aircraft."

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239 comments

THey should house a server farm in it (1)

alta (1263) | more than 3 years ago | (#33961768)

One with enough computers to stand up to /.

Re:THey should house a server farm in it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33961810)

Hopefully that plane didn't crash as hard as her web host.

Re:THey should house a server farm in it (2, Interesting)

Quantus347 (1220456) | more than 3 years ago | (#33961860)

Actually, thats not a bad Idea. When it comes down to it a plane is a structurally sound sealed can of high-grade aluminum, a common and ideal material for heat sinks and dispersal. All youd have to do is gut any insulation inside and sink it in a nice cold lake, which any deep enough can be.

Re:THey should house a server farm in it (1)

alta (1263) | more than 3 years ago | (#33961984)

Good point, those wings would make awesome heat sinks. And with the gas tanks and fuel lines, it's pre-made for liquid cooling.

Re:THey should house a server farm in it (2, Insightful)

Richard_at_work (517087) | more than 3 years ago | (#33961994)

If you sunk it in a lake, it would rapidly fill up with water - aircraft are *not* air tight...

Re:THey should house a server farm in it (0)

sherpajohn (113531) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962226)

If you sunk it in a lake, it would rapidly fill up with water - aircraft are *not* air tight...

O'rly? Makes me wonder why they seal the doors, and how they deal with the half normal atmospheric pressure at 35,000ft or so? I guess something that's not air tight can still experience http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rapid_decompression [wikipedia.org] right?

Re:THey should house a server farm in it (5, Funny)

Nocuous (1567933) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962310)

Your comment reminds me of Futurama; when the Planet Express is being dragged under the ocean, Proferror Farnsworth is asked how many atmospheres of pressure the ship can take, and he says that because it's a spaceship, it was designed to withstand, "between zero and one".

Re:THey should house a server farm in it (5, Informative)

naturaverl (628952) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962320)

Most planes employ a self-adjusting louvre system that continuously pushes in the right amount of air to keep cabin pressure at the right level. When the amount of air coming in equals the amount of air flowing out (and there most certainly is air flowing out), cabin pressure is equalized.

They do seal the doors, for passenger comfort. Yet, the plane is definitely not 100% airtight. Or watertight for that matter.

Re:THey should house a server farm in it (4, Informative)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962340)

O'rly? Makes me wonder why they seal the doors, and how they deal with the half normal atmospheric pressure at 35,000ft or so? I guess something that's not air tight can still experience http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rapid_decompression [wikipedia.org] right?

Probably because, in the usual course of flying a 747, the engines are running which have big dealybobs called 'compressors' which pump air to the cabin. A pressurized aircraft would be 'weather resistant' rather than waterproof. Note that the Airbus 320 that splashed into the Hudson river a couple of years ago floated (for a couple of hours) because it has a "ditch switch" that closes a number of valves and openings on the plane that makes it more water resistant.

You probably could seal a fuselage enough to make it reasonably watertight at low pressures, but you don't see too many 747 submarines (this side of movies that is).

Re:THey should house a server farm in it (4, Informative)

Suzuran (163234) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962518)

They didn't get to push the ditching switch in the hudson river incident, which is why it sank so quickly.
Airbus Industrie documentation specifies that an A320-family aircraft landed intact on the water (which is highly improbable, but...) with the ditching mode activated should float for at least three days.
That is an ideal case, of course.

Re:THey should house a server farm in it (2, Informative)

Richard_at_work (517087) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962460)

If aircraft were airtight, then they would retain sea level atmospheric pressure regardless of their altitude. They do not - as someone else notes, they have compressors running off the engines to pressurize the cabin.

Re:THey should house a server farm in it (1)

callmebill (1917294) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962402)

All youd have to do is gut any insulation inside and sink it in a nice cold lake.

Right. Let's warm up some lakes. That's a great idea.

Re:THey should house a server farm in it (1)

Captain Splendid (673276) | more than 3 years ago | (#33961892)

Screw that. If a 747 is only 50K, I'm building my next house out of a couple of DC-10s and laugh at all the money and time I saved.

Re:THey should house a server farm in it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33962312)

Screw that. If a 747 is only 50K, I'm building my next house out of a couple of DC-10s and laugh at all the money and time I saved.

I'd like to get a few DC-8's. If they were good enough for Xenu, they're good enough for me.

Re:THey should house a server farm in it (4, Informative)

magarity (164372) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962478)

and laugh at all the money and time I saved
 
Pay careful attention to the bit about $8,000 / hr for transportation to get it to the building site before you get excited about the money you'll save.

Downed Server! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33961772)

more like it. Register it at ICANN?

Another Variation (5, Informative)

Zyrkyr (594993) | more than 3 years ago | (#33961776)

A guy here in Oregon had the same idea, but without the architectural finesse: http://www.airplanehome.com/ [airplanehome.com]

Re:Another Variation (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33961822)

There's also a guy in London trying to do a similar thing with a recycled train carriage [overtheunderground.com] .

Re:Another Variation (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33961844)

There's also a guy in London trying to do a similar thing with a recycled train carriage [overtheunderground.com] .

There's also a nigger who lives in a cardboard box. Your point?

Someone should do this with a space shuttle! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33961804)

Aren't they basically being given away for scrap now? Maybe someplace
Alternately, can you get a good price on a B52 in mothball?
g=

Re:Someone should do this with a space shuttle! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33962028)

Aren't they basically being given away for scrap now?

Uh, no, they're not. The current shuttles aren't officially retired yet, once they are they'll be donated to museums.

Re:Someone should do this with a space shuttle! (1)

couchslug (175151) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962210)

"Alternately, can you get a good price on a B52 in mothball?"

Most of them have been chopped as part of START treaty compliance and the rest are retained for parts. (Neat to watch in person. The blade crashed through the fuselage like a meat cleaver through a stick of butter.) You could likely contact dismantlers near AMARC about old military transport hulls.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1bsWUO4o8I4 [youtube.com]

What about strong winds? (2, Interesting)

onionman (975962) | more than 3 years ago | (#33961816)

I'm assuming that the architect will consult with the appropriate engineers before building the structure, but still I wonder how a house with airplane wings for roofs will fair in a major storm?

Re:What about strong winds? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33961900)

Better ask Dorothy.

Re:What about strong winds? (4, Funny)

Frosty Piss (770223) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962110)

...I wonder how a house with airplane wings for roofs will fair in a major storm?

"Whooosh..."

Re:What about strong winds? (1)

AshtangiMan (684031) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962188)

it will be no different than any other roof. The walls will prevent airflow being under the wing which will destroy the potential for the tremendous lift capabilities of the airfoil. All roofs experience a certain amount of up forces in wind, but they rarely overcome gravity, and if they do still have to be strong enough to overcome the mechanical connections (roof to wall to foundation). As for the water tightness, that should be very easy. I imagine that drip edges at all of the wall to underside of roof will be necessary, but they are common components of buildings as it is.

Holy crap! (1)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#33961850)

That's pretty awesome, actually.

I'm stunned you can buy an entire decommissioned 747 for $50K -- that's a lot of material.

My favorite thing from the second link is:

Although, we did find out that we have to register the roof of the house with the FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) so pilots flying overhead do not mistake it as a downed aircraft.

Now that would make for some strange calls to flight control ... uhh ... tower. ;-)

Re:Holy crap! (1)

DriedClexler (814907) | more than 3 years ago | (#33961914)

Speaking of which, why do they need to keep the wings? It's not like someone can live in that part, and it massively increases the probability of a pilot misidentifying it from above.

Re:Holy crap! (1)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#33961996)

Speaking of which, why do they need to keep the wings?

Why? You couldn't build a better roof-truss than a wing of a 747. It's a huge structure designed to support lots of weight.

Use it as a roof, and it's basically an engineering marvel. From the same article I quoted before:

In researching airplane wings and superimposing different airplane wing types on the site to scale, the wing of a 747, at over 2,500 sq. ft., became an ideal configuration to maximize the views and provide a self supporting roof with minimal additional structural support needed.

A 2500 square foot, pre-engineered roof. Two in fact. All as part of the $50K in material costs. I seriously doubt you could build that inexpensively -- and if it's designed to keep a 747 in flight, it's bloody solid!

it massively increases the probability of a pilot misidentifying it from above.

That's why they had to register it with the FAA, so that when pilots call it in it's a well known landmark and they don't scramble people.

Re:Holy crap! (1)

drsmithy (35869) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962142)

Speaking of which, why do they need to keep the wings? It's not like someone can live in that part, and it massively increases the probability of a pilot misidentifying it from above.

Judging by the pictures they'll be used for aesthic and/or shading purposes.

Re:Holy crap! (1)

bigrockpeltr (1752472) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962306)

people dont even read the summaries anymore?

provide a self supporting roof with minimal additional structural support needed

this basically means that the wings are designed to support their own weight while being attached to the plan on one side only.
someone further up mentioned they would have to probably include extra "roof strap" type reinforcements in case of high winds but i think once it is sealed off properly no wind should be getting under the wings to produce any lift. However, IANAE (Engineer)

Re:Holy crap! (1)

Call Me Black Cloud (616282) | more than 3 years ago | (#33961942)

I'm stunned you can buy an entire decommissioned 747 for $50K -- that's a lot of material.

I'm sure the cost of moving the plane far exceeded the price of the plane itself. If you have a 747 sitting around you no longer need it's probably expensive to dismantle and recycle, and after a while "$50k and you haul" sounds like a deal.

Re:Holy crap! (1)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962036)

I'm sure the cost of moving the plane far exceeded the price of the plane itself.

Dude, seriously, at least try to read some of the article:

Additionally, incorporating prefabricated lightweight components off site and delivering them to the remote site via helicopter, although at a cost of $8,000/hr. became realistic after considering the cost of getting traditional labor and material to the site.

Yes, it was expensive. But, in the context of this project, it was "cost effective" -- outrageously expensive, but, apparently not as stupid as the alternative.

If you're building on 55 acres of Malibu California, and you own a Mercedes dealership ... cost is relative.

Re:Holy crap! (1)

drachenstern (160456) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962122)

can't read the article, the site's down :p

Re:Holy crap! (1)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962242)

can't read the article, the site's down :p

Oh, sure, that's what they all say. ;-)

Thanks, now I've refreshed my page to confirm what you say, and I no longer have the article either. Bastard!! ;-)

Re:Holy crap! (1)

timeOday (582209) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962290)

It blows me away that renting a helicopter costs $8,000 / hr. Apparently you can operate some tactical fighter jets [keypublishing.com] for less than that. (By this source the F16 is down to $5K/hr, while the F22 is up to $40K/hr... gulp).

Re:Holy crap! (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962084)

Nope it costs NOTHING to dismantle and recycle. People will gladly buy them. There is a crapload of aluminum and copper in those things.

Recycling a plane is a net profit.

Re:Holy crap! (4, Funny)

alta (1263) | more than 3 years ago | (#33961966)

I think the guy should have authorization to talk to tower just like any other.

Tower, AC156D, going to read, over.

Tower, AC156D, taking a piss, over.

Tower, AC156D, tower using microwave, over.

Tower, joining the Mile High club, at 12ft, over.

Re:Holy crap! (3, Informative)

LoudMusic (199347) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962262)

I think the guy should have authorization to talk to tower just like any other.

...

Except that it is owned by a woman.

... a woman who requested only curvilinear/feminine shapes for her new home and has purchased an entire Boeing 747-200 ...

sad... (4, Insightful)

gandhi_2 (1108023) | more than 3 years ago | (#33961868)

too bad he had to level a hilltop and clear away some forest to build his stupid house.

recycling?
greenwash fail.

Re:sad... (1)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#33961904)

too bad he had to level a hilltop and clear away some forest to build his stupid house.

Well, someone with 55 acres of land in Malibu aren't doing this for environmental reasons.

In this case, it seems like it was a means to an end since she wanted all curved shaped. This isn't an "environmental" project, this is an innovative architect.

Re:sad... (2, Insightful)

Hijacked Public (999535) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962030)

Where do you propose people build houses? Only on naturally level ground, on which no vegetation is growing?

My hunting cabin is making LEED Silver, despite my having to 'clear away for forest' and 'level a hilltop'.

Re:sad... (3, Interesting)

necro81 (917438) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962114)

How 'bout building in some place has already been graded, attached to the utilities, and has road access? Like, say, the endless horizons of unfinished subdivisions, abandoned buildings, and decayed urban centers in the world?

Better yet, buy and existing structure and renovate it, which is far greener than most new construction.

Re:sad... (2, Interesting)

CannonballHead (842625) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962166)

... so if I buy some land in the country ... I can't level land and cut trees down to build a house? Granted, a plane is a bit different... but if I own my own property?

Re:sad... (1)

necro81 (917438) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962346)

I can't level land and cut trees down to build a house?

You may, but it's a bit disingenuous to then go prancing around about how "green" it is, no matter how many repurposed wings you stick on it.

Re:sad... (4, Insightful)

kg8484 (1755554) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962348)

No, you can do it, but don't call it green. It's like what Scott Adams said when he was building his "green" home [wsj.com] :

The greenest home is the one you don't build. If you really want to save the Earth, move in with another family and share a house that's already built.

Re:sad... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33962424)

*Someone* owns everywhere. Should we concrete over the entire world?

Re:sad... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33962454)

Sure you can, but just don't call it 'green'. Because it isn't.

Re:sad... (1)

Hijacked Public (999535) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962214)

Last place on the planet I want to live, is in a decaying urban center.

As for buying an existing structure, my current home is a nearly 200 year old farmhouse, so I'm on board with that idea. But where I need a cabin, there are no existing structures to renovate.

I like how you saved that a in your first sentence though. You really minimized consumption of resources on that one.

Re:sad... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33962234)

Not to mention the issues with parking a giant metal hulk up there instead of traditional building materials.

20 years from now when this needs to come down how are they going to get rid of it? Dynamite?

There's just something gross about this whole thing...

Re:sad... (1)

AshtangiMan (684031) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962254)

According to the architects site they are doing this using the footprints of existing structures that were destroyed in a fire. So this is a fairly eco-friendly installation.

Re:sad... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33962032)

Even the recycling part doesn't really count for anything at all since they are still taking valuable aluminum out of circulation. If they had recovered aluminum from cans in a landfill, that would be one thing, but taking aluminum that would already have been reused doesn't really accomplish any eco purpose -- in fact, it makes aluminum *more* scarce which increases the demand for mining. It would be like building a house out melted-down gold bars and bragging about recycling.

Re:sad... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33962194)

I had this very thought. The superstructure of a modern home is usually made of wood, a renewable resource. Rather than recycling this plane, we now have to go mine more aluminum, a process that is far less ecologically concise. Yes, this is a great work of art/architecture, but lets call it what it is; a home(toy) for the rich.

Just one problem: (2, Insightful)

WiglyWorm (1139035) | more than 3 years ago | (#33961902)

Isn't a 747 about as falic a shape as you can get?

Re:Just one problem: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33961938)

Penis envy.

Re:Just one problem: (1)

spun (1352) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962090)

Not exactly curvilinear/feminine shaped, is it? I think what she wants is a house made out of large sheets of ham thrown against the side of a cliff.

Re:Just one problem: (2, Funny)

knappe duivel (914316) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962136)

If your penis is 747-shaped you have a big problem, mr WiglyWorm

Re:Just one problem: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33962376)

If your penis is 747-shaped you have a big problem, mr WiglyWorm

Hey pal, play with it.. don't talk to it.

Re:Just one problem: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33962168)

An actual penis is probably "more" phallic shaped. Just guessing though. Then again, I do not see the efficiency of "recycling" a plane by burning that much helicopter fuel to put it on top of a once beautiful mountain top.

Re:Just one problem: (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962276)

Nice misspelling. www.getfirefox.com

Ariane rocket, specifically AR40 model? I believe that style is referred to as "cut" as opposed to "uncut".

A BGM-109 has rather manly proportions for an unmanned missile.

In the era of, and preceding, "dont ask dont tell", it seems pretty obvious why most rocket designers had to be civilians instead of military personnel. Must have driven the security clearance officers crazy.

A glimpse of the future? (1)

iONiUM (530420) | more than 3 years ago | (#33961930)

If oil continues an upward trend, and we don't find a suitable substitute, air travel will become far more expensive in the future. The air line industries are already having difficulty, so maybe they will subsidize by selling some aircraft off for recycling.

Instead of just one house though, they could probably use the materials to do a lot more. I don't know what. Is there rare earth elements in them? Maybe that part alone will become worth more than the plane if China has its way.

Re:A glimpse of the future? (1)

drsmithy (35869) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962244)

If oil continues an upward trend, and we don't find a suitable substitute, air travel will become far more expensive in the future. The air line industries are already having difficulty, so maybe they will subsidize by selling some aircraft off for recycling.

Some airlines are having difficulty, others are making money quite nicely.

The financial crisis put a big damper on business travel - particularly in Business and First class - which is most airline's bread and butter. This trend has started to reverse itself over the last 6 months, however.

Re:A glimpse of the future? (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962360)

Instead of just one house though, they could probably use the materials to do a lot more. I don't know what. Is there rare earth elements in them?

Being mostly aluminum, the first thing that comes to mind is a nice mobile home, but I'm guessing a rich chick like her would not want to live in a doublewide. And the last thing Hawaii needs is a tornado/hurricane magnet as its well known on the mainland that those things attract tornadoes.

The most exotic component of aircraft of that era is probably some of the counterbalancing weights, which were probably removed before she got it. Solid blocks of W in the old days, depleted U in the modern era. In her house I'm sure they just weld stuff into place instead of balancing on a pivot... probably. Oh and the engine fan blades are pretty interesting metallurgically but I'm sure they were removed to keep other engines running.

Not economical by most standards... (1)

damn_registrars (1103043) | more than 3 years ago | (#33961946)

Sure, they bought the plane for $40k (according to the video), but then they are paying $2 million to build the house. That is slightly more than what most people consider "reasonable" for the cost of a house.

Re:Not economical by most standards... (1)

i.r.id10t (595143) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962042)

55 acres in Hawaii. Any idea on cost for the land? $2mil for building something on it is just a drop in the bucket...

Re:Not economical by most standards... (1)

gstoddart (321705) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962218)

55 acres in Hawaii.

Not Hawaii. Malibu, California.

And, I'm sure it's a hell of an expensive plot of land. I'm betting absurdly expensive, in fact. $2 million to build it probably is gonna translate into an overall property worth several times that.

Re:Not economical by most standards... (1)

dcavanaugh (248349) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962322)

My guess is that the house could be built for a lot less. Considering where this house is being built, I doubt cost is much of a concern.

If you consider the fuselage to be nothing more than the outer shell, $40k is still reasonable. What you put in it is up to you. In areas where land is cheap, I wonder if this approach could be used to construct office or warehouse facilities.

Radiactive Waste? (2, Insightful)

Manip (656104) | more than 3 years ago | (#33961950)

Did nobody mention to her that planes are very radioactive partly because they spend so much time in the thinner atmosphere and partly because there is depleted uranium (which is more likely to cause heavy metal poisoning) used as weights within them? Sounds like a lovely material to build a house out of. Maybe she should paint the outside with lead based paint, water the garden with agent orange and then install asbestos for installation? Jokes aside - fools with their money. This fool sounds like she has a ton to waste and deserves what she gets.

Re:Radiactive Waste? (4, Interesting)

Richard_at_work (517087) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962026)

It depends on when the aircraft was built as to whether it has DU as its weights or not, some 747s do and some do not. The radioactivity picked up from high altitude flying is negligible in terms of future use of the material, its never going to be emitting enough radiation to be an issue.

Re:Radiactive Waste? (3, Informative)

vlm (69642) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962446)

The original poster doesn't even understand what neutron activation is or how its completely irrelevant to this situation, yet he's scared of it. Brilliant.

you could have accurately shortened it to

its never going to be emitting radiation.

The stereotypical granite countertops are probably going to pump out about as much gammas as she'd get from flying at low altitude.

Looks like just the wings (1)

natespizer (1362373) | more than 3 years ago | (#33961982)

From the article it looks like they are just using the wings.

Re:Looks like just the wings (1)

necro81 (917438) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962158)

I agree. They certainly didn't get those large expanses of plate glass from a 747. You could do something interesting with the passenger windows, building up a large window from many smaller panes, but they clearly didn't do that here. Might actually be pretty well insulated - airplane windows are multi-layered.

Aerophile (3, Insightful)

StikyPad (445176) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962000)

In researching airplane wings and superimposing different airplane wing types on the site to scale, the wing of a 747, at over 2,500 sq. ft., became an ideal configuration to maximize the views and provide a self supporting roof.

Let me guess -- it creates a lifelike visual stage with mellow yet crisp organic textures and deep black interscene silences. The muscular yet deft support structure enhances the vista responses of the viewer, allowing full appreciation for the rich yet subtle display of thermal inversion in the valley below.

Re:Aerophile (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962444)

Let me guess -- it creates a lifelike visual stage with mellow yet crisp organic textures and deep black interscene silences. The muscular yet deft support structure enhances the vista responses of the viewer, allowing full appreciation for the rich yet subtle display of thermal inversion in the valley below.

That was uncalled for. Don't do that around here, OK?

What about insulation? (1)

JustNilt (984644) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962044)

I realize the "wing house" is not really just an intact airplane but as others have posted, folks apparently have been known to use them intact as well. Since these need to get up to a rather high altitude, I assume they're fairly well insulated already. I do wonder, though, how much insulation would be left and if it's truly suitable as a home (aside form the oddball nature of it) without major remodeling aside from putting up walls for rooms.

I also wonder if the $50,000 included transportation costs. Sheesh, for that matter, will all the new young urbanites end up essentially living in the modern equivalent of expensive trailer parks?

used all of it... (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962050)

I call shenanigans... Where did they put the fuel tanks, the Engines, and you cant use the wiring for the house, it's not even the same type of wiring. Also all those uncomfortable seats. The house is going to have incredibly ugly furniture.

From the photos it looks like they only used a few parts of the aircraft. and the home could have been built without any airplane being flown to the worksite.....

Looks like a plane crash from above (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33962060)

Interesting mobile home though

The Story Makes Sense Until... (1)

damn_registrars (1103043) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962098)

They started talking about "first-class". I am not familiar with this at all. When I go to the airport, after I get strip searched the security guards usually duct tape me to my baggage and check me in steerage-class. I'm happy if I arrive at my destination.

Re:The Story Makes Sense Until... (1)

dcavanaugh (248349) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962260)

That's what happens when you tell the ticket agent, "Please don't lose my bags." Stop making such outrageous requests and they will let you sit with the rest of the passengers.

Not impressed (5, Interesting)

anotheryak (1823894) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962144)

A lot of people have built homes from disused airplanes. Nothing new there.

This is "much ado about nothing" from a rich woman interested in some self-serving publicity about how wonderful she is.

A "meditation pavilion"? Really? She recycles a couple wings, which are rather easily to recycle anyway by melting them down, but then throw away most of the airplane instead of using the fuselage as a home. Then, as others have mentioned, she cuts the top off a mountain for her feminine palace-thing.

And the "use all parts of the Buffalo" quote is more self-serving crap. First of all, it's a Bison, not a Buffalo. Second, they only "used all parts" because they were bloody hard to obtain. You try killing a giant, angry bull with a rock and a stick and see how hard it is.

When times were good, and they had lots of bison, they just cut off the best parts and left the rest to rot--this can be documented from the multiple "buffalo jump" sites where they chased Bison off cliffs. You take all the parts from a couple because you need them, but when it gets down to the end, you just cut off the humps and tongues. The "perfectly ecological Native American" is a myth invented by Europeans. The Native Americans are the same as humans all over the globe. What a shock.

Feminine shape? (1)

greyhueofdoubt (1159527) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962156)

Have any of you ever seen a 747?

-b

Re:Feminine shape? (3, Insightful)

greyhueofdoubt (1159527) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962350)

Sorry to respond to myself but I just had to add some things.

-no, they sure as hell did not disassemble all 4,500,000 pieces. Most of that number is fasteners (rivets) which are destroyed by being removed (and need to be replaced).

-here are a few things that aren't part of a "sustainable" house: many pounds of lead, cadmium all over the place, hydraulic fluid, fuel cells with fuel residue, halon fire suppression system, primer loaded with chromates, toxic insulation, plastic and fabric treated with flame retardants, etc.

-trucked cross-country

What this amounts to is a pile of used scrap aluminum generously sprinkled with hazardous waste. 8 years in aviation maintenance has been enough for me to lose any childhood fantasies about living in airplanes.

It just bugs me that they're using words like green and sustainable around an airplane. Might as well build a house out of pre-RoHS electronics.

-b

Re:Feminine shape? (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962474)

Have any of you ever seen a 747?

Yeah, the engines. Large, round, very noisy.

Seems like a lot of women I know.

Economical price of $50,000 BUT... (3, Funny)

dcavanaugh (248349) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962170)

On move-in day, each item is a carry-on and subject to a baggage fee of $50. You can't have an airplane without junk fees!

4.5E06 pieces ??? (1)

feufeu (1109929) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962392)

I'd call everybody who takes the four and a half million pieces of the 747 apart to convert it into something, say... a house, a maniac. This would include deriveting all aluminium sheets from the wings etc and riveting them back together... For the sake of what ???

From TFA: (1)

Darth_brooks (180756) | more than 3 years ago | (#33962426)

"The 747 represented the single largest industrial achievement in modern history and its abandonment in the deserts make a statement about the obsolescence and ephemeral nature of our technology and our society."

"Captain, our hyperbole filters are at 127% capacity and rising! I'm diverting power from weapons and life support to create an inverse tachyon pulse using the main deflector dish to try and compensate!"

I'm a hardcore plane guy. (Boeing products in particular) But at the end of the day....it's just a hunk of well shaped aluminum. 30 years of flying leads to metal fatigue. Time marches on. Besides, we've put men on the moon, split the atom, tamed the Yangtzhe and Colorado rivers, created artificial organs, and made it possible for mankind to set our DVR's from our cell phones (making it possible to never miss another episode of Dancing with the Stars or Jersey Shore). There are many industrial achievements that stand above the 747.

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