Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Buying 747

I have a fascination with airplanes and get childishly excited when I spot a majestic Boeing 747 on the tarmac (sadly none fly into Dublin Airport at present, with the exception of the US Air Force One last year). Apart from the Concorde, no other airliner is quite as striking.

I had the pleasure of being onboard a Virigin Atlantic 747 some years ago, but economy doesn't grant you a seat on the top deck.

This psychedelic Peter Max poster is one of the few old airline adverts featuring the plane that inspired the name 'jumbo jet'. Created in the early 1970s (the jet began flying at the start of the decade), it's pretty groovy. 

TAKE A TRIP: Pop artist Peter Max created this rather psychedelic ad for Pan Am in the 1970s

An original poster is on sale here for approx €1,911. Or you could buy a poster book from Etsy that contains 24 of his works including the Pan Am ad for approx €115 plus delivery. A few shops on eBay seem to sell it. I'd love to have one framed in white painted wood. For more on Pan Am artwork, see this very informative site.

Aer Lingus had two 747s at one point, the flagships of the fleet. Famous passengers included Pope John Paul II. 

LOVELY LIVERY: The mostly white painted 1960s body (which was given to a new Airbus A320 last year to commemorate Aer Lingus' 75th anniversary) gave way in 1974 to the green, blue and white that is so familiar today (albeit slightly different shades).
Image via Grey Pencils

HIGH FLIERS: This Aer Lingus Boeing 747 is pictured alongside a TWA 747 at JFK Airport in 1972, two years after the airline first took delivery of the airline. Image via

SKY'S THE LIMIT: The Boeing 747 at Boston Airport in 1988. Image via

Sadly, this former Aer Lingus Boeing 747 now gathers rust in this airplane graveyard.

PLANE SAD: Once the pinnacle of jet age glamour, St. Kieran, an Aer Lingus Boeing 747, lies gutted in a U.S. airplane junkyard.
Image copyright Andy Martin and via AirLiners.Net

There are lots of gorgeous retro shots of the 747s at Dublin Airport on longreach747400's Flickr stream which I won't publish here for fear of breaching copyright.

The latest addition to the 747 family is the Boeing 747-8, launched in 2005 and introduced last year. This Queen of the Skies is the biggest yet and can accommodate 467 passengers. Note the difference in the size of the upper deck as compared to the original 747. 

JET SET FOR GLORY: The new Boeing 747-8 on its first flight. Image via Engadget

I feel that the Boeing 747-8 is more of a looker than rival super-jet the Airbus A380.

SUPER-SIZED DOUBLE-DECKER: This photo showing the Airbus A380 crossing a road at Singapore Airport in 2005 demonstrates the sheer scale of the massive airliner.
Image copyright Andrew Hunt Air Team Images and via Airliners. net

Despite its beauty, the Boeing 747 does not seem to have appeared on much artwork that available today. I found these old stamps on Shutterstock, which I might print off and put into photo-sized frames.

AIR MAIL: A circa 1987 stamp celebrating the founding of Air Madagascar. Image: IgorGolovniov /

FLOWERS AND ENGINE POWER: A Japanese stamp issued in 2005. Image: Bocman1973 /


  1. €1,911? That's just plane crazy.

  2. It would pay you back ten-fold in the pleasure of beholding it every day.

  3. Very nice posts Sorcha. I love planes too especially the 747-400 which is my all time favourite. It's sad to see the old Aer Lingus Jumbo in the Arizona dust! Imagine how many Irish immigrated to the states in the 70s and 80s on that! My sister lives near that airplane graveyard and we have passed it a few times on the way to Phoenix. It's hard to get in there with security and all that. Keep up the good work. The Airbus A380 isn't as nice as the 747, it's not as elegant, looks like a Beluga whale with wings!

  4. The 747 is and always will be the king of the skies. The A 380 is ugly and to big. The 747 earned its brilliant reputation. I have had the pleasure of flying in Aer Lingus's 747 St.Kieran and I must say it was brilliant.

  5. aerlingus had 3 747's ei-asj ei-asi and ei-bed

  6. There is a 747 plane landing in dublin airport still singapore airline lands there once a week