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August 4, 2010 4:11 PM   Subscribe

Airplanes used for other stuff What happens to old airplanes? They often end up as restaurants, houses or even boats.

These seem to be popular in the former Eastern Bloc, musta been a lot of cheap used airplanes. The house conversions seem pretty nifty, but the restaurants seem to have a high failure rate. Nevertheless, I want one.

This search started because I was trying to find a picture of a plane turned into an RV. I struck out on that, but found this.

previously, previouser and previouslier, though that last one looks like a hoax/vaporware.
posted by warbaby (25 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
My favorite is The City Museum, which has turned them into a playground.
posted by jeffamaphone at 4:24 PM on August 4, 2010 [2 favorites]

I like these. Now I'm thinking of getting a DC10 or something to use as a guest house out on my ranch or, maybe, my island. Should I put it next to the streamliner club and sleeper cars and the nineteenth century calaboose, or on the other side creek?

(Not that I own a ranch or an island yet, but just two lottery wins and ...)
posted by Some1 at 4:24 PM on August 4, 2010

How about an artificial reef.
posted by filthy light thief at 4:25 PM on August 4, 2010

They are making a waterpark out of one down the street from me. I looked up the tail number and found out it was formerly a Pan Am jet, then a China Air jet, before becoming a cargo jet.
posted by mathowie at 4:46 PM on August 4, 2010

Back in the disco era, Rochester, NY had Club 747, which was of course made from parts from its namesake aircraft. It's a Hyundai dealership now, no remnants of the club remain that I know of.
posted by tommasz at 5:49 PM on August 4, 2010

I went to Flannery's in Pendel PA when I was a kid. Plane eateries
posted by fixedgear at 5:49 PM on August 4, 2010

Airport Journals' coverage, including "Bruce Campbell"'s airliner home. With great pix.
posted by mwhybark at 5:57 PM on August 4, 2010

The smaller ones make good cars.
posted by Tenuki at 5:58 PM on August 4, 2010

I believe Campbell's project has been in the previousliers: Current update, Feb. 2010.
posted by mwhybark at 6:01 PM on August 4, 2010

and, yo, check out the comments on that article, warbaby:

"Werner Kroll - November 27, 2009 -08:48
Hi,my Baby is prior to wide body Aircraft desing.I am driving legally a 1944 C 47 Dakota in Queensland Australia.She is cut past the third window with a fullsize cargo door at the back.I make mechanical music and got a pipe organ,pianola and button accordeon on board,You might get a look at it : "

He then posts contact info a couple of times. There's your lead on the aircraft SUV, I'd say.
posted by mwhybark at 6:12 PM on August 4, 2010

...aaaand here it is!

Scroll down to the third set of pix.
posted by mwhybark at 6:18 PM on August 4, 2010

I so want a motherfucking plane, dammit.
posted by Skygazer at 8:29 PM on August 4, 2010 [1 favorite]

mwhybark - that is very much like the one I remember. IIRC, it was silver in color and the photos were taken somewhere in the American Southwest. It had the tail on it. It must have been in a magazine years before the internet. But the RV and boat conversions are very cool.
posted by warbaby at 8:41 PM on August 4, 2010

Costa Rican nightclub
posted by Jacqueline at 8:56 PM on August 4, 2010

warbaby: "It had the tail on it."

huh, gotta be different then, I think - I thought I read in the linked bit that the Aussie one lost its' tail on a hard landing circa 1947 before marrying up that iH truck.

And given your remembered Southwestern setting, I would guess there were other shadetree mechanics after the war that noticed the Harvester wheelbase and the Dakota hull width were well-met. The Arizona location of that plane-storage-and-salvage facility would also lend potential to the tale.
posted by mwhybark at 10:16 PM on August 4, 2010

Image is gone in this thread, but commenters claim not one but TWO USA-located cousins.
posted by mwhybark at 10:22 PM on August 4, 2010

They're turning a plane into a classroom here in Nottingham.

This greatly disappoints my husband, as he went to that school as a child, and it's totally not fair that they get a plane now.
posted by Katemonkey at 11:14 PM on August 4, 2010 [1 favorite]

When I was younger, I saw a picture of a WWII Mustang fighter balanced on its nose in front of a gas station,I believe it was in Life Magazine. Many, many years later, I was hitchhiking through California, and got dropped off right in front of that very airplane. It was somewhere around Fresno, if I recall correctly.

I wonder if it's still intact.
posted by Jimmy Havok at 3:05 AM on August 5, 2010

It was somewhere around Fresno, if I recall correctly.

I wonder if it's still intact.

This it?
posted by Tenuki at 3:24 AM on August 5, 2010

That's it. The place hasn't changed in the 20-odd years since I passed through, from what I can see. I planned to spend the night in the raisin field two blocks south, between the grapevines with the raisins drying on brown paper, but I got a ride before it got dark and made it into Mariposa that night.
posted by Jimmy Havok at 3:38 AM on August 5, 2010

They are making a waterpark out of one down the street from me.

We were there last September! The whole place gave me this weird vibe, like it was just a big front for some James Bond Villain-esque corporation. All the employees were wearing identical jumpsuits and the company name ("EVERGREEN") was plastered over everything - even the little kids' playground.

The museum is owned by Evergreen Aviation, which is apparently some sort of logistics company. They also own some farm fields down the street where, once again, employees in identical jumpsuits were all working. All of the fields were also labeled - "STRAWBERRIES - EVERGREEN" in that weird, nothing-to-see-here kind of way.

Maybe their plan is to secretly dissolve cocaine into the water slides and the "drainage" takes it to some secret processing facility underground.
posted by backseatpilot at 5:19 AM on August 5, 2010

Evergreen International Aviation has long been known to have some sort of relationship with the CIA, but the details have never risen much above tinfoilhattery. There are some odd news reports.

Water slide seems an odd business for them to be in. Evergreen is a very common name up here in the forgotten corner. Sure these are the same folks.

/end derail of my own post. sheesh.
posted by warbaby at 7:20 AM on August 5, 2010

Or a youth hostel.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 8:40 AM on August 5, 2010

I wish I could remember where I saw the link to photos of a disassembled plane being used as a house where the wings were part of the roof structures of different levels (IIRC). It's not any of the current links in the thread and now it's going to drive me nuts until I remember what web site had it.
posted by immlass at 9:41 AM on August 5, 2010

Evergreen Air Museum is well worth a visit. The number and scale of military aircraft on display communicate the depth of the company's ties to the government quite clearly.

The Museum of Flight in Seattle has longstanding ties to Boeing, and the docents on the floor are often longtime Boeing workers, excitedly ready to talk your face off about this or that aspect of flight whatsits.

I assume, from the rather more reticent culture observed among Evergreen's docents, that they, likewise, are used to keeping their mouths shut. The museum is really something else, quite stunning, and up for a Shuttle (as is the Museum of Flight).
posted by mwhybark at 10:09 AM on August 6, 2010

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