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The Most Innovative 747 Conversion Yet – Rolling Art Gallery


BurningMan747a

The Jumbo Jet re-imagined as a rolling art gallery.

We’ve written several times about 747s are being re-purposed for uses other than carrying passengers. Most recently, we reported on a story of a company who has converted a Jumbo Jet into the world’s largest firefighting aircraft.

But now we’ve come upon perhaps the most unique use for a 747 – even if it has nothing to do with flight.

The Big Imagination Foundation of Venice, Calif., is converting a 747-300 – or part of one – into “the biggest art car in the history of Burning Man.” That event which takes place in a temporary community built in Nevada’s Black Rock Desert is a perfect place for a Jumbo Jet converted into a rolling art exhibit.

Here are the three phases of the conversion (Phase One has been completed):

Phase One: Clean out, and cut off the tail and wings.

Phase Two: Reconstruct the upper deck and refinish the cockpit, cut the upper section of the fuselage, and prep the upper fuselage for transport.

Phase Three: Reconstruct the lower deck interior, install the decks over the wings and upper deck canopies, unbolt the wings/landing gear and prep for lower fuselage transport.

When completed, the fuselage will be 132-feet long, 24-feet wide, and 20-feet tall. The moving team will consist of a semi with 12-axle trailer, five highway patrol officers, two bucket trucks, two pilot vehicles, a transportation captain, and a documentary film crew.

The trip to Nevada for Burning Man, which runs from Aug. 28 through Sept. 5, should be a spectacle for the drivers sharing the road with half a 747 on wheels.

The Big Imagination Foundation is accepting donations to help fund the project. You can visit the website to donate and to learn more about it.

Written by Wendell Barnhouse

Wendell Barnhouse is a veteran journalist with over 40 years of experience as a writer and an editor. For the last 30 years, he wrote about college sports but he has had an interest and curiosity about aviation since he was in grade school.