kanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3059 posts, RR: 23 Reply 6, posted (3 months 4 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 4785 times:
Even though they say is "in preservation", it will eventually be scrapped. the nose turret might be retained as a cold war trophy in a military air museum. The main reasons are the airframe has been extensively modified, none of the components are common with either the existing Air Force Ones, or the replacement 747-8i's, some laser components are extremely toxic, and the technology is fast becoming obsolete (still you wouldn't want anyone studying it too closely).
On top of all that, there is simply no money nor the will to find some to continue to fly the bird for further research.
they were common.. however they would need zero timing and refurbishment before being sold.. Since the government isn't in the used parts business to either commercial airlines or other governments, I doubt would haver started with these parts..
On the other hand they may just have removed and crated for long term storage where dust dirt, birds and solar damage is minimal.
Revelation From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 11421 posts, RR: 24 Reply 17, posted (3 months 3 weeks 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 4451 times:
Quoting Oroka (Reply 16): I knew someone would nit-pick that. A 744 costs around $80-90M... the other $4 910 000 000 is laser and related systems. The airframe was an off the shelf purchase.
I don't know. Most of the references speak of it as a "modified" 744. I doubt this is something that can be rolled out the nose or cargo door and pushed onto a different 744. Given the prime contractor was Boeing, I don't think there's all that much inside that is common with an "off the shelf" 744.
kanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3059 posts, RR: 23 Reply 18, posted (3 months 3 weeks 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 4278 times:
Quoting Oroka (Reply 16): The airframe was an off the shelf purchase.
go back and look at the history.. a production unit was delivered to Wichita where the aft body was extensively beefed up, the aluminum skins replaced with stainless steel, the forward structure gutted and beefed up to carry the dome, all wiring replaced.. new floor beams, hardly a off the shelf bird..
However the main issue you need to grasp is the Air Force does not sell used parts to commercial airlines or foreign governments (the latter requires Congressional approval). They might remove and refurbish to Military standards, but do not have an FAA repair certificate.
It's moot anyway if the plane is going to be flown to a gate guarding location.
Quoting zanl188 (Reply 14): NMUSAF has a non-profit doing the construction fund raising for them... but yes a new hangar is underway...
Sorry I was being a little sarcastic.. especially after seeing several museums disbanding and selling collections when the contributions dry up. However, I doubt that the laser hardware in the aft end will stay intact.. it's A) caustic, and B) a closely guarded test installation. .. If people were not so enthralled by shiny metal, a more practical display would be a conceptual cut away laser mock-up inside a building and the nose section detached and mounted on the exterior..
kanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3059 posts, RR: 23 Reply 21, posted (3 months 3 weeks 6 days 1 hour ago) and read 4155 times:
Quoting N14AZ (Reply 19): nd why did they have to replace the aluminium skin?
it was the corrosive nature of the chemicals in the laser and the out gassing/drainage of those chemicals. They also replaced some of the ribs and stringers for the same reason. not: it was only the aft belly skins that were replaced..
Sounds like she started off as an off the shelf bird to me. She may have been modified a bit, i cant remember if the standard 744 comes with the giant laser turret on their nose or not.
The whole frame could never be sold off for pretty much any other use, but I dont think the wings were modified.
But then again, I dont work for Boeing or the USAF anymore (or ever), they dont call me to keep me up to date any more
If they are not selling the flaps off to someone, or loaning... and I doubt it is being scrapped, let us speculate some more about the fate of the marginally modified 744F with the FRICKIN LAZOR BEAMS ATTACHED TO ITS HEAD.
KC135TopBoom From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 11899 posts, RR: 52 Reply 25, posted (3 months 3 weeks 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 3629 times:
Quoting Revelation (Reply 17): Most of the references speak of it as a "modified" 744. I doubt this is something that can be rolled out the nose or cargo door and pushed onto a different 744. Given the prime contractor was Boeing, I don't think there's all that much inside that is common with an "off the shelf" 744.
No, the airplane was ordered by the USAF on 30 Jan. 1998 as a standard B-747-400F (it is not the ERF model). After delivery, it went to the modification location (Kansas) where the air refueling equipment and some of the external equipment and military avionics were installed. The laser turret was also installed there after the equipment was installed through the nose cargo door at NG.