Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Travel Tuesday: Pinal Airpark

One of my earliest memories of childhood, was my father and friend recovering the wings of an airplane in our garage, I walked under the wings and got paint in my hair. 

So airplanes have been a part of my life for over 60 years.  
Pinal Airpark is one of the places that planes go to die, an airplane boneyard. 

It is located off the interstate between Phoenix and Tucson.  Given the opportunity, I had to stop.  I was disappointed, at the moment there is no tour, there is no visitors center, or gift shop, not even a shop selling aircraft salvage (I would love to buy an aircraft clock.) 

There was a news report recently of a 747 Business Jet with about 30 hours total flying time being scrapped.  It had been ordered by some middle eastern billionaire, who died before it was ready to use.  It sat in Europe for a decade, was for sale for a long time. No one wanted it, it was built as a private plane and from a regulatory basis could not easily be converted to an airliner or a freighter.  It never had the interior installed. It was offered for sale at one time, for little more than the engines were worth.  It was flown to Pinal a few months ago, and the engines immediately removed and sold in the replacement market.  It will be parted out, and when that is done, recycled into beer cans. There are other boneyards in the desert, I hope to go in pursuit of.  






















 

13 comments:

  1. I saw Pengy.
    I'll bet there are some Australian planes there, although during the Covid travel restriction period the US had many planes parked in our dry desert, the best place to store inactive planes, and they were well maintained.
    My first long overseas flight was on a 747. Workhorses is such a clich├ęd word, but for long flights, they were rather marvellous.

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    1. 30 years ago the 747 dominated long distance routes, not many left today.

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  2. It is a Pinal Colony for aeroplanes (American: airplanes). A sad symbol of waste in a beautiful desert where the natural eco-system has evolved through millennia and is delicately balanced. What a contrast.

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    1. How punny. Some of the planes are simply locked up there until a later release, some are there to be parted out. There is a giant parts transporter there, built to haul aircraft components, wings and things, around the world.

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  3. I wonder why there is no attempt at recycling the parts; the meta; glass, whatever. I mean, it's an eerie sight to see them gathered like that but also a waste of space and use.

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    1. Some are stored and to be called back for use, some are stored while for sale, some are slowly parted out, then the shell broken up and recycled. The Delta 767 (I may have flown on that one's last flight in 2020) is being dismantled for scrap.

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  4. I spy the penguin!

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    1. Penguins have a fascination with things that fly

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  5. What a great pic of Travel! Such a good little birdie..

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    1. Our faithful travel companion

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  6. I tried going there once many years ago and had the same luck. You got some good shots here. It's sort of sad in a funny way to see these beauties being slowly dismantled.

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    1. I found it strange to think that the 747 was leaving service, they started flying when I was in middle school.

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  7. Neat photos. I would hope something can be done to recycle these planes.

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