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World's Most Experienced Airline... in the garage
October 26, 2009 5:30 PM   Subscribe

Anthony Toth has recreated a first-class Pan Am cabin in his garage.
posted by armage (49 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite

 
Thank you God, for the creation of OCD, so that we may have such wonders.
posted by leotrotsky at 5:37 PM on October 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


There's nothing inherently pathological about a hobby.
posted by dersins at 5:40 PM on October 26, 2009


I see stuff like this and my first thought is "dammit, I wish I had the free time to build awesome shit in my garage."

My second thought is "you don't even have a garage, you idiot."

BUT IF I DID IT WOULD BE FILLED WITH TOTALLY AWESOME STUFF THAT WOULD NOT AT ALL BE DORKY OR STRANGE OK.
posted by elizardbits at 5:41 PM on October 26, 2009 [12 favorites]


Like so many things, this just makes me wish I lived in the past and was rich.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 5:43 PM on October 26, 2009 [3 favorites]


"Two years ago, Mr. Toth, who is single" You don't say...

Seriously though, that is very cool - I love these labours of love, the modern day folly, completely pointless yet so totally magnificent.
posted by jontyjago at 5:43 PM on October 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


Years from now, I will do the same thing, only it will be the Singapore Airlines A380 suites, complete with attendants.
posted by Burhanistan at 5:46 PM on October 26, 2009


Ah, but it misses the ekstasis of first class, and that cannot be created in ones garage, this is merely a simulacra of the first class experience. It is going to Communion, merely a ritual we recreate in vain hope to give meaning to our existence. Where is the exhilaration of superiority as you stride past the plebeians of the lower classes? The smugness when the pilot announces that all coach bathrooms are backed up? The absolution of guilt on your 3rd glass of champagne? The flirty stewardess, because you're the only one close to her age in the entire cabin and she's always wanted to stay at the Soho House? Such things do not exist in his garage.

Zhuangzi knew that some experiences could only be acquired: Wheelwright Pian said ''In my case I see things in terms of my own work. When I chisel at a wheel, if I go slow the chisel slides and does not stay put; if I hurry, it jams and doesn't move properly When it is neither too slow nor too fast I can feel it in my hand and respond to it from my heart. My mouth cannot describe it in words but there is something there 1 cannot teach it to my son and my son cannot learn it from me. So I have gone on for seventy years, growing old chiseling wheels. The men of old died in possession of what could not transmit. So it follows that what you are reading is their dregs."
posted by geoff. at 5:50 PM on October 26, 2009 [12 favorites]


I'd have to go with Braniff.
posted by Sys Rq at 5:51 PM on October 26, 2009


I'm tempted to ask "why?", but as one who has built some awesome but useless things myself, all I'll do is ask "why not the Pan-Am Orion Space Plane from 2001?"

I mean, if you're going to go through the trouble.
posted by bondcliff at 6:01 PM on October 26, 2009 [2 favorites]


I couldn't afford first class so my garage re-creation is coach.
posted by Joe Beese at 6:02 PM on October 26, 2009 [5 favorites]


Something's missing...
posted by DU at 6:04 PM on October 26, 2009 [2 favorites]


That is fucking awesome.

One of the things that is given a thumbs-up among a certain group I am a member of is the creation of 'total environments.' All too often I see other members making dark and spooky shit, always the same dark and spooky shit with vauge and meaningless differences. This stuff, though, this stuff is much closer to the intent. Good on you, Mr. Toth.

Good to see that he does have some sound clips on the headset and even went so far as to reproduce packaging. I'd have a really loud white-noise machine just outside, of course. I suppose simulating take-off and landing is technically very difficult, though.
posted by Weighted Companion Cube at 6:07 PM on October 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


Also, having just flown an international flight, I'm struck at how crappy those old first class seats are. Even business class will get you a fully reclining seat nowadays, and one that is separated from other seats.
posted by Burhanistan at 6:08 PM on October 26, 2009


It's the stairs that really sell it. So 70s-airplane-disaster-movie.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 6:12 PM on October 26, 2009


Carport '77
posted by Horace Rumpole at 6:13 PM on October 26, 2009 [32 favorites]


>"Two years ago, Mr. Toth, who is single" You don't say...

Now see, my first thought was, "Hmm, wonder if he's single."

Dude. What can I say? I likes me some airplane.
posted by heyho at 6:16 PM on October 26, 2009


The garage next door is flying too closely to us. I feel nervous.
posted by not_on_display at 6:17 PM on October 26, 2009 [2 favorites]


...and if you visit Mr. Toth at the right time, California will provide the turbulence, thus completing the experience.

thenk yew. I'm here all week. Remember to tip your stewardess on the way out.
posted by not_on_display at 6:18 PM on October 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


I want these motherfucking snakes OUT of this motherfucking garage!
posted by mr_crash_davis mark II: Jazz Odyssey at 6:20 PM on October 26, 2009 [4 favorites]


One of the things that is given a thumbs-up among a certain group I am a member of is the creation of 'total environments.' All too often I see other members making dark and spooky shit, always the same dark and spooky shit with vauge and meaningless differences.
posted by Weighted Companion Cube


eportalarious
posted by DU at 6:23 PM on October 26, 2009


Looking at Flickr snapshots of Mr. Toth's elaborate, period-accurate first-class cabin, I feel nothing other than a bit of the same claustrophobia and anxiousness I get when I'm actually stuck between a couple of large people in the middle seat on a long flight. Romance is unfamiliarity, and it says a lot about how completely we now take flight for granted that this loving homage to the passenger experience evokes so little of the emotion it would have when this guy was a kid. We've come a long way, really: thirty years ago jet-setting was an acutely aspirational thing; these days flying on a commercial aircraft is an uncomfortable irritation, and the window-seaters close the shades long before the plane rotates off the tarmac. Because there's nothing out there, you know, that they haven't seen before.

It's nice to be reminded that once, before aircraft cabins became the cattle cars you shuffled shoeless through security cordons to get to, before skimming across the fiery cloudtops, racing nightfall, was an event less compelling than laptop solitaire or James Patterson, flight was something that people desired and loved and celebrated as the astonishing, near-magical feat of modernity it actually is.
posted by killdevil at 6:35 PM on October 26, 2009 [11 favorites]


The downside is that now everyone he brings home tells people about that creepy guy who wanted to do it in a replica plane cabin.
posted by Pope Guilty at 6:55 PM on October 26, 2009 [2 favorites]


I would have recreated the scene on the right. Longing for confined seats is odd, especially when you could make swanky curved lounging couches.
posted by filthy light thief at 7:04 PM on October 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


It makes me happy that someone out there obsesses and gets the nerdy giggles over something I don't care about in the least. That's such a wonderful thing.
posted by brundlefly at 7:13 PM on October 26, 2009


Oddly, I actually own a Pan-Am 747 fuselage and have just put the finishing touch on a perfect recreation of a Redondo Beach garage with a lifelike bachelor in it.
posted by mattholomew at 7:19 PM on October 26, 2009 [14 favorites]


Four foot high club anyone?
posted by Keith Talent at 7:21 PM on October 26, 2009 [2 favorites]


Burnhistan, will you be showing unending loops of John Water's Hairspray?
posted by mollweide at 7:44 PM on October 26, 2009


Er, Burhanistan.
posted by mollweide at 7:45 PM on October 26, 2009


Creepy...or delightful?!




Both, maybe.
posted by Neofelis at 7:53 PM on October 26, 2009


and the window-seaters close the shades long before the plane rotates off the tarmac.

All airlines make you raise the shades for take off and landing. If you want to see out the window, get a window seat. The idea that air travel needs to be romantic is really rather backward, in my opinion. We need to redirect that energy towards space travel so we can eventually find going to other planets dull and yearn for distant stars. It's in our nature to become bored with previous accomplishments.

But if you want a nice time on a plane, you'll have to fly a long haul flight of at least 8-9 hours. A domestic flight is really too short to merit all the fuss. After many trips to SE Asia from SE USA, a 2 hour domestic flight will feel like a quick bus ride to downtown to me and I don't care if I'm not made to feel like I'm on the vanguard of society.


Burnhistan, will you be showing unending loops of John Water's Hairspray?

Heh, I just noticed that. I think I will also include choice clips from "Pink Flamingos".
posted by Burhanistan at 8:04 PM on October 26, 2009


I respect this endeavour.
posted by mazola at 8:42 PM on October 26, 2009


Wow. Somebody just got an internet connection for the first time.
posted by spock at 8:43 PM on October 26, 2009


I wonder what it would take to recreate a 1977 Radio Shack?

starts rooting around Internet, garage for 1977 Radio Shack Catalog

Already have a TRS-80 Model I ... and II ... aaaaand a CoCo.

I bet I can get period-correct shelving and blister-packs on eBay

Would you like to join our battery club? Your phone number, please?
posted by zippy at 9:04 PM on October 26, 2009 [5 favorites]


His dad Lazlo must be so proud. And he's got nothing on the guy who made his whole apartment into a Star Trek deck.
posted by cjorgensen at 9:19 PM on October 26, 2009


I'm tempted to ask "why?", but as one who has built some awesome but useless things myself, all I'll do is ask "why not the Pan-Am Orion Space Plane from 2001?"

I mean, if you're going to go through the trouble.


If that means I can walk upside down, I'll make a donation.
posted by armage at 9:19 PM on October 26, 2009


Although for complete realism, this plane needs William Shatner and a gremlin. Or possibly just simulacra thereof.
posted by armage at 9:25 PM on October 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


If that means I can walk upside down, I'll make a donation.

Floyd didn't walk upside down in the space plane (which was on a special run just for him, by the way) and it actually was zero G during flight, unlike the space station or Discovery. The scene you're thinking of was Bowman jogging in the crew compartment of Discovery. If someone makes a replica of that in their garage they will have my unfettered love and respect.

/2001 Geek

posted by Burhanistan at 9:26 PM on October 26, 2009


You'll be amazed at the recreation of the interior a 1998 Volkswagen Jetta in my garage. I even did the exterior as well.
posted by GuyZero at 9:52 PM on October 26, 2009 [4 favorites]


I don't get it, but good for him.
posted by JohnnyGunn at 10:13 PM on October 26, 2009 [1 favorite]


We need to redirect that energy towards space travel so we can eventually find going to other planets dull and yearn for distant stars. It's in our nature to become bored with previous accomplishments.

Yeah. Twenty years after they get suborbital flights up and running between New York and Hong Kong, people will be bitching about the two hours lost in transit and the need for 5-point restraints as the catapult's linear induction motors kick in. When riding the elevator up to orbit is no longer novel, passengers on a given lift run will complain about cable harmonics and the need for ear protection over the many hours it takes to get from the ground to LEO. Lawyers will file class actions alleging resonant damage to personal belongings and cargo, and shady insurance resellers will offer "lift policies" that cover you and provide for your loved ones in the event of catastrophic cable delamination. When Europa is an interplanetary ferry hop or two away, passengers on cheaper flights will bitterly protest their ships' multiple swings around Venus and Earth. Gravity assists are such a wasteful and inefficient way to build the necessary delta-V for trans-Jovian insertion, they'll say. Weeks of time wasted, and for what? To save the carrier a little cash on reaction mass? To appease the greenies and the patriotic isolationist loons by refusing to install efficient Chinese fusion drives and ion engines?

Brief befuddlement with disruptive new technology is reliably followed by enthusiastic cultural embrace and assimilation of it. In no time at all, usually in less than a generation, we humanize everything we encounter; we inhabit it, live it, make it our own. It becomes ours to complain about, ours to wax poetic about, ours to temporize about when it unnerves us, ours to get bored and frustrated with when it annoys us. Cultural alchemy transforms the alien into the familiar.

We humans, we're marvelously adaptable little creatures. So our descendents will joke easily about the trippy sensory distortions that accompany C-plus spinup as they set out on their 4th trip to Gliese 581e. "The sun's so red there," they'll say. "Did I remember to bring my exposure suit, decent shades and floats for the seashore, are my xenothalassemia immunizations up to date, and did we bring emergency electrolytes and anti-xenotics in case somebody gulps way more of that completely saltless seawater than she intended?"
posted by killdevil at 1:36 AM on October 27, 2009 [4 favorites]


/2001 Geek

Actually, I'm pretty sure there was a short clip of a stewardess with velcro slippers reorienting herself in a circular hallway of sorts. She was upside-down at one point (relative to the camera, of course).
posted by backseatpilot at 6:47 AM on October 27, 2009


I want these motherfucking snakes OUT of this motherfucking garage!

I have had it with these monkey-fighting snakes in this monday to friday garage!

FTFY - this is a polite thread, thank you. No commoners allowed in first class.
posted by Antidisestablishmentarianist at 6:55 AM on October 27, 2009


"Hey you guys wanna came hang out in my fakegarageairplane friday night? I'll pour you some $14 bourbons and we can eat peanuts. We go places man, see things."

"Uh...yea, enjoy that."
posted by TomMelee at 6:57 AM on October 27, 2009


Sadly, my re-creation of the interior of a Greyhound Bus circa 1972 is still in my head. I say "sadly" because I wish I could claw out that part of my brain that remembers the endless trip sitting next to a girl with poison gas halitosis who was driven to discuss the Mod Squad in excruciating detail.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 7:07 AM on October 27, 2009


geoff: Ah, but it misses the ekstasis of first class, and that cannot be created in ones garage, this is merely a simulacra of the first class experience...

Or to summon the ekstatis of first class in just four words*:

"To your left, madam..."

(*my one & only upgrade!)
posted by Jody Tresidder at 8:43 AM on October 27, 2009


Okay, come on, if that's your bag, then it's pretty great. I don't know if it's $50,000 great, but we all have our weaknesses.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 9:03 AM on October 27, 2009


A few years back when I lived in Seattle, there were a bunch of airplane wall panels for sale at the Boeing surplus (which was the best place in the world to shop for used drafting tables) and I contemplated this very thing. Unlike this guy, I'm not big on followthrough, but the idea has always bounced around the back of my head. Seeing it done makes me happy.
posted by billyfleetwood at 10:59 AM on October 27, 2009


Actually, I'm pretty sure there was a short clip of a stewardess with velcro slippers reorienting herself in a circular hallway of sorts. She was upside-down at one point (relative to the camera, of course).

Yeah, that's what I was referring to. 2001 jokes are a bit on the subtle end, I suppose...
posted by armage at 10:53 PM on October 27, 2009


filthy_light_thief: That's actually another view of the lower level lounge on the PSA (Pacific Southwest Airlines) model of the Lockheed L-1011. They ordered five, only two were ever delivered. Both had the lower level lounge.

I think this guy has a fairly interesting hobby, albeit an expensive one.
posted by drstein at 11:56 AM on October 28, 2009


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