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Step Inside the Restoration of the Original Boeing 747

The Boeing 747 is an iconic aircraft that singlehandedly pushed the airline industry into the jumbo jet age. Sitting derelict at the Museum of Flight for 14 years, the very first of its kind is currently undergoing a rigorous restoration process to restore its former glory. ( More...

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steve rogers 5
my first flight in the 747 was in 1972 , after that I never looked back , to me no other plane compares , there may be new bigger ones but none has the memories to so many people than that bird , that was the golden age of travel .
homburge 3
My first 747 experience was in 1971, an American Airlines flight from Chicago to San Francisco -- with the piano lounge in the back.

To this day, I still love the comfort, stability, and elegance of the 747. (Note, the elegance doesn't often come from the operating airline these days!)

Boeing created a masterpiece of the sky -- it was that way in the 70s, and still is today.

And yes, I agree with the others that I'm always amazed to watch one of these planes depart the runway. Even though slow due to the heaviness, the initial climb is measured and graceful.
josh homer 1
Back in the 90's I worked at the AA SOC, which is attached to the CR Smith museum. One day, the first captain of AA's 747 was there..I chewed his ear off during my lunch break..Amazing guy with tons of stories (I was a crew scheduler) so he told me some funny stuff. He said the 747 was his favorite aircraft.
BaronG58 2
My first 747 experience was also in 1972 I as you fell in love with the aircraft. I remember when it was taxing out asking is something this big going to get off the ground. It boggled my mind. Then I had a flashback of my first plane ride ever, out of Hobby Airport (KHOU). It was on a Trans Texas Airlines (TTA) and at the time it was nicknamed Tree Top Airlines. Aircraft was a DC-3 and as a 7 year old in mind was boggled.
that 747 must be kept impecable, it is an aviation icon, a must see plane, a superb piece of engineering and tech. congratulations to those who are pushing this project ahead.
Your right... She is still " Queen" of the skies!!! ands commands respect to this day. The only one's you see now flying are from "Kalitta" I flew on one from Charleston AFB back in the 90's. To this day... The 747-100/200s can still out run and EMB or RJ. I will take the " Queen" off the line any day!!! lol
John Atherton 2
Agreed! Did you ever travel Continental's Sun King between LAX and Miami? Absolutely the golden age of flight!
link to more pictures

Tara Cashman 1
If any readers are interested in supporting the project, please visit Thanks!
Ned Griffin 1
Flew BA's 747 several times from ANC to LHR in the Eighties and early Nineties. In a flight deck visit one time, the captain actually let my 10-year-old daughter make a course correction somewhere above the Arctic Circle. Then a crew member dressed her in a flight attendant's hat and apron and let her pass out the hot towels. Now 40, she still cherishes those memories.
indy2001 1
My first 747 flight in 1975 was definitely a mixed bag of emotions since I was flying to the UK for my grandmother's funeral. Although I had flown quite a bit, even transatlantic a couple of times, I hadn't been on a 747. The main part of the trip was a KORD - EGLL flight on a TWA 747. As I packed, I couldn't find my passport. I called the State Dept. and was connected to the on-duty Passport Officer in D.C. Despite the fact that it was Sunday morning, he couldn't have been nicer. I was given permission to travel on an expired passport that I had.

He must have told TWA about the reason for my trip because everyone I encountered was so caring. The F/A's knew my name and welcomed me onto the plane. Once in the air, they made sure I was well-fed, with 2 helpings of TWA's famous Chateaubriand and a couple of desserts (college kids can never have too much food). Then they cleared out a center section so that I could stretch out my 6'5" frame for the overnight flight. When we arrived at Heathrow, a British Customs officer met the flight and escorted me through Immigration and then Customs.

I was given similar treatment on the return trip, including a 30 minute visit to the cockpit while we were over the Atlantic. A college friend's father flew for TWA and he had contacted his friends. I also got to enjoy the first in-flight movie that I had ever seen ("The Great Waldo Pepper", as I recall, which has some beautiful flying scenes).

Everyone is so harried and over-worked, I doubt whether that I would have received that level of attention these days. Although the reason was a sad one, it was certainly a memorable experience for a 20-year-old! And the venerable 747 played a central role in it.
Norman Reid 1
My first 747 flight was in May 1972 with Aer Lingus. Our aunt from Boston was with us and as the crew was getting people seated before takeoff, a diminutive Irish stewardess was struggling with a bag in the overhead compartment. Said my aunt: "Do you mind being shot?" Startled, the stewardess asked her to repeat. I interrupted and told her my aunt asked if she minds being SHORT. Things went smoothly after that. Wonderful experience being on that 747 and won't forget it.
Martin Connor 1
Is this the same plane that Boeing borrowed back to run engine tests on the 777 bound Pratt & Witney engines in the 1990's ?
Steve Backman 1
My first 747 ride was on TWA in 1970 or 71 from SFO to JFK. I remember that every seat was pretty big and every one had adjustable bladders for back and butt. I also remember seeing a bunch of sparks on approach as the flaps went down and air brakes up. It was a little disconcerting but no fire and uneventful landing.

I also got to fly from Hawaii to SFO on a TWA ferry flight in 1991. I was the only passenger. I flew in the cockpit for takeoff. When they set the thrust gate at 86% I was certain we would crash! I was used to B-52Ds that even at 100% thrust, we always prayed for more.But the 747 jumped off the ground and was at altitude in a heartbeat! Great ride.
wyomnc1 0
I got bumped into 1st class a couple of times, {military in Uniform}, wow what a ride.


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