wernerga3
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Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Thu Apr 04, 2019 10:40 pm

Hi fellow forum members. I will be posting once a week for five weeks with each subsequent era article. Stay tuned each week for the rest of the story! I have cleared these articles with the moderators, and have created a separate thread which introduced the topic here:
viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1419061


Intro: The Reason for the 747-Bridging The Gap to Supersonic Transport
We are all about to embark on a journey through time. A journey which identifies more than the interior cabins of the Pan Am 747s over the years; one which tells a monumental story of the times we today take for granted. The story of an amazingly impactful airline and its influence on not only the industry, but the world. Through a series of five articles, I will take you all on this journey through the eras of the Pan Am 747 interior cabins. For some of you, this may all seem inconsequential, but for some of you, this may seem monumental; sentimental; even ornamental. Throughout this article, and subsequent articles, we will be discussing zones of the 747 cabin. To help aid you, there is a simple diagram below outlining the different zones. While I will be covering the mock-up and pre-production eras that Boeing and Pan Am created in this first article, I feel it prudent to begin this literary journey under the guise of 747 historian.

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The jet age was in full swing, and there were concerns that were to be quelled by the introduction of the jumbo age. While passenger comfort and affordable air transportation for all were on the forefront of essentials for the airlines, there were also economic elements to consider. With increasing congestion at airports, and increasing pollution from the jet engines of the time, the jumbo 747 was just the answer. With more passengers per flight, not only would fewer flights have to take off, but it would cost less in theory per passenger given the massive size of the plane. This was in addition to the fact that it would pollute less. The 747 was a plane built on theories, against all odds under immense pressure.

With dual aisles and an upper deck section, the plane was an evolution in size to what was available at the time. The fuselage was 225 feet long. A company memo indicated that walking up and down the aisles in coach 10 times was the equivalent of a half mile of exercise. But more importantly, these planes were pure freighter haul ready. They all left the factory with the ability to be converted into convertible freighter type aircraft. The nose cone would open, and the plane could be loaded in full. Boeing only expected to sell fifty 747s. The concept at the time was that the 747 would be the bridge to the next age of transport- the supersonic age.

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The Concorde and Boeing 2707 SST were both in the works, and Pan Am was going to order the Concorde, and work with the US government on the Boeing SST. The SST would be longer (albeit narrower) than the 747. It would also be significantly faster as the world was transitioning into an age of travel that would be cut in half. I might add that the 2707 was to be superior in every regard to the Concorde. Pan Am’s interest in the Concorde was most likely to stay competitive while they were waiting for the SST to be completed some three years after. On the horizon was a world where every airport had multiple jetways per plane, and the on-the-ground experience was just as important as the in-flight experience. Once in full swing, the plan was to convert the antiquated 747 jets into cargo haulers, and put as many passengers as possible on supersonic transport machines. Thanks to unexpected federal laws around the sonic boom noise, this dream unraveled rather quickly, and the 747 would become the star instead. On April 13, 1966, on Boeings 50th Anniversary, Pan Am would place the largest airplane order to that date for 25 747-100 models totaling $525,000,000. Shortly thereafter, they would add an order for 8 additional 747s. This would all prove to be a mixed affair in time.

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1966-1967: A Giant Wooden Mock-Up Shows a New Dimension in Width
And so, we officially transition into what this first article is mainly about: The interior design of the Pan Am 747 during the Pre-Production years of 1966 to 1970. To accurately look at this era, we will break down the years leading up to the launch as each year saw new and evolving ideas for the Pan Am 747 cabin. Beginning in 1966, Boeing constructed a life-like 747, a giant wooden mock-up of the fuselage aft of the B-Zone to demonstrate the sheer size of the wide-body jet. While it was not the entire plane, it was a great start for creating hype around the size. As you can imagine, everyone was caught up in the idea of this giant engineering marvel. With nine abreast, it was significantly wider than anything available at the time. The initial fuselage mock-up was very barren. It had high-hat lights in the ceiling, and there were no seatbelts to be found. The walls were wooden panels with white fillers, and the overhead compartments in the center were separated props. The mock-up was so well received that Boeing offered other Airlines such as United, opportunities to see the giant wooden fortress and take photos to help promote their orders of the 747. Remember that no 747s had been completed at this point, so the wooden shell was the best feel for the coming plane. In fact, the first 747 would not roll off the assembly line until 1968.

The wooden shell began with a first class section. It was essentially a first class cabin of the times with a center row of seats and dual aisles. With six abreast, in chair sets of two, you could get the feel of an airier first class. The seats were an all-in-one design with seat-back tray tables, but were significantly wider than the coach seats. They had a fabric covering with a patterned design on them, and look to be varying colors around the cabin. This layout more closely resembles an area aft of the B-Zone section, as Boeing had not yet built a front A/B-Zone mock-up with an upper deck.

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Continuing on through the wooden hull would reveal the coach section. In this section, the seats had a basic all-in-one design with a protruding headrest for comfort. They were upholstered in neutral colored fabric which was devoid of pattern, with multiple shades of color randomly placed around the cabin. Each seat had a tray table in the seat-back. The seats were in sets of two, except for the row of three on the left aisle. The concept was that even with four seats in the center of the fuselage, since they were separate pairs of seats, it would feel even more spacious. This same concept adorned the L1011s when they entered service for many airlines. This was accommodated by the 3-4-2 layout of the cabin rather than the more common today 3-4-3 layout. In initial photographs, there are Pan Am stewardesses wearing at-the-time uniforms including white gloves and hats.

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1967-1968: Imaginative Renderings Lead to the Evolution of a Mock-Up
Now that Boeing had completed its wooden mock-up to emphasize the sheer width and size of the plane, they needed to continue onto the exciting part. The front A-Zone first class and the upper deck sections. This is after-all, a lot of what the 747 had to offer in so far as character- a front hump. As time pranced on into 1967, Boeing constructed a separate wooden mock-up containing an updated first class and an upper deck compartment. This was in addition to the already created wooden mock-up section they had previously built. It included the A-Zone, B-Zone, and upper deck with staircase. There were once again high-hat lights in the ceiling, and the walls were constructed of the same combination of wooden paneling and white as the coach mock-up walls were. The artist rendering was even more inventive than the set itself. The entire A-Zone of the aircraft would be the equivalent of a luxury lounge. If you were to look into it, you might think it was a fine restaurant, or even a dinner club. Chairs would swivel in every direction, and the sociability of the compartment would be exponential.

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The seats in the first class section were an all-in-one design with cloth fabric. The cloth fabric was an alternating subdued green pattern, or a floral, green, blue and purple designed floral pattern. Each set of two seats had the same fabric pattern and it alternated from row to row. The tray tables were in the seat back, and the seat sides were plastic shells. They were arranged in sets of two on the outer rows of the A-Zone, and six across (three sets of two) in the majority of the B-Zone. The carpet on the main floor had a blueish-purple look to it, and the staircase had beige carpeting and wood paneling on the surround. In the cone section of the A-Zone, there was a small lounge with purple swivel chairs, and a curtain to separate the section from the rest of the first class cabin. One other interesting fact to note is that Pan Am stewardesses started wearing pink caps in the Boeing promotional photos before their new uniforms were finalized. The new 747 uniforms would not be completed until 1969.

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Stepping upstairs into the upper deck revealed a very exciting prospect. Since the A-Zone had been designed with a lounge in the front cone section, the upper deck was able to be left to other means such as a conference room or a state room. There would be a table with swiveling chairs, and a back wall in which you could elect to hang up art or use stylistically. In the mock-up photos of the upper deck, you will notice that the deck is broken into two separate compartments. In this configuration, the right would be a conference room, and the left a state room (remember the rooms are reverse looking in). Very few would opt for this come production, but Delta did elect to have a “penthouse in the sky” setup similar to this split setup. Boeing really wanted people to take advantage of the luxury associated with privacy. The upper deck would act as a source of escape for business men who needed to get back to work and leave the party behind, or for families with small children who wanted peace and quiet. You would go up the spiral staircase, and enter an upper deck which looked like a hump on the outside of the airplane with three windows on either side. In the mock-up of the upper deck, you will notice the walls are different as are the windows. Initially, and in many of the mock-up photos, it appeared that there were only two spaced out windows on either upper deck side. Ultimately, it would become three spaced out windows on either side come production.

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Along with this new mock-up of the front of the plane came an update to the already built coach section mock-up. To make the cabin seem more official and to get it ready for Pan-Am’s promotional photo shoot to come, they made significant changes to the mock-up. First, the lighting was changed to be indirect and no longer hi-hat. The wall panels were more production-like with windows instead of fake cutouts, and patterns instead of wood paneling. Prototype food carts were created to help with the promotional photography. The overhead bins over the center rows were now adjoined as they would come to be for production, and the seats were reupholstered, but remained the same shape with protruding headrests and seat-back tray tables. The main seat design was a light beige fabric with dark brown zebra stripes. Randomly placed around the cabin were solid colored fabric seats in orange, green, yellow, and blue. The hype of the time was that given the large size of the airplane, color coordination should play a role in embarkation. I will touch on this more in the next article, as at this time in the process, I doubt they had the final ideas around how this would work. That is clear in that the seats were very randomly colored around the cabin. You will also notice the change in stewardess uniform from the blue hat and white gloves in the initial coach mock-up, to a pink hat and no gloves in the updated coach mock-up. At this point, the mock-up coach cabin had transformed into the most realistic of the cabins, and it looked as such.

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1968-1969: Pre-Production Interior Ready-Time to Install
The next challenge was to continue with the mock-ups, and ultimately translate them all into pre-production interiors which could be installed in the first 747 with a passenger cabin, airplane number three. It would be used to allow Pan Am to take true promotional photographs with their new 747 uniforms. Boeing and Pan Am needed to continue to create hype, and what better way to do so than to create more promotional material in the form of brochures, ads, and even matchbooks. They took the mock-ups and translated them into the pre-production cabins of the new Pan Am 747. As they continued on into 1968, the coach cabin was essentially complete, and ready to be translated into a pre-production plane, but the first class and upper deck sections still needed to be brought up to the same caliber.

Beginning with the pre-production first class section, it was truly an evolution of what had been mocked-up a year earlier. The location was the same A and B-Zones of the cabin. There was no longer a lounge in the cone section of the A-Zone, but rather seating went all the way up to the front. The seating which was in front of the spiral staircase was removed to allow room for serving carts. Removing this center chair set and making room for the stewardesses to work was logical as there were plenty of additional seat sets in the front cone section as compared to what was originally imagined with the front cone lounge. The walls were updated to look more production ready with real windows and panels as they were in an actual plane instead of a mock-up. You will notice small details such as exit signs and the lack of high-hat lighting as well to indicate it was no longer a set. While the fabrics on the seats remained the same, the carpeting and walls had been updated from mock-up to pre-production. The carpeting was now blue with striping throughout the cabin and on the upper deck staircase. Around this time, Pan Am had made official their new uniform colors. These colors: Galaxy Gold and 747 Blue, were new from head to toe to align with the launch of the new 747. You can see in the photos of the pre-production interior, that the flight attendants had switched over from the pink hat setup, to their official galaxy gold and 747 blue uniforms and hats. This was the beginning of Pan Am taking charge of their interior design for launch. The pre-production first class had been finalized, but it was lacking the inventive lounge in the nose cone that was rendered and even mocked-up some years earlier.

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Since the A-Zone was no longer to have the separate lounge, it was time for the designers to get creative with the pre-production upper deck. While it was initially intended to be either a private stateroom or an office-like working space for meetings, with the absence of any real lounge aboard the plane, it was essential that this space be used effectively. Out went the idea of an office space, and in came the upper deck lounge. The walls had been updated to have the proper count and shape of windows as the upper deck was now installed in a real plane instead of a mock-up. The carpeting had been replaced to match the main level blue with stripes. There were two tables on either side, each with two large swivel chairs featuring headrests. There was one center couch with half of the bench facing one direction, and the other half facing the other. This allowed for casual conversation in either direction while seated in the center section. There was a small bench for two near the staircase, ideal for stewardesses. Finally, there was a couch on the back wall which sat six. This couch was positioned below a very popular Boeing option- a patinaed mirror wall. This wall would be in many early 747s and was the epitome of 1960s classic design. Total seating for this arrangement was sixteen people. While Pan Am ultimately came to a final pre-production upper deck design, it was heavily influenced by the Boeing promotional shots of the upper deck which had the same layout but different colors and materials. It was Boeing’s main idea for how customers would configure the lounge.

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Finally, there was the coach section of the pre-production interior. As this section was previously updated along with the new A-Zone and upper deck mock-up in 1967, there was not much else that needed to be done to get it to pre-production status and officially installed in the number three plane. The biggest difference in this cabin as compared to the year prior, was that the windows and walls were officially real, as were the doors. Flight attendants were finally able to show off their new gold and blue uniforms which I referenced earlier. A movie projection system had been added for promotional shots, as Bell and Howell had officially gotten the contract to provide movies in the sky for Pan Am in late 1968. To make the cabin seem just a bit more elegant, they added cloth headrest covers to contrast against the colors in the cabin. After the Pan Am 747 brochure went out featuring these promotional shots, this 747 had officially come off the line ready to be shown to the public for the first time at the upcoming Paris Auto Show.

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1969-1970: 28th Annual Paris Air Show- Preview of a Launch to Come
On February 9, 1969, the number one plane took its first flight. On this topic, planes number two, three and four were committed to Boeing from Pan Am for certification and testing purposes. As a result, these planes, while painted in Pan Am livery, would essentially be owned and operated by Boeing to help get the 747 certified with the FAA. Emergency evacuations and weight stress tests would ensure the plane was indeed ready to transport commercial passengers. There were even pilot emergency cockpit reel escape tests. Plane number three would be the first outfitted with passenger cabins, and would be the 747 to fly to the 1969 Pairs Air Show. Meanwhile, planes two and four would remain empty for testing just as the number one plane did. While plane number two was technically Pan Am’s first 747, the first one to be delivered to them was plane number five. Planes number five and six were reserved for Pan Am’s pilot training program in Roswell, New Mexico, and plane number seven was planned to be the first to operate passengers commercially in early 1970. The test planes two three and four would ultimately be converted and delivered to Pan Am after all testing was completed in 1970. While Pan Am was to be the first to get a delivery, there were already plenty of airlines interested in getting in line all because of the original giant wooden shell mock-up.

Boeing wanted to be a part of the 1969 Paris Air Show to stay competitive and to show off to the public just how hard it had been working for the past few years. The Anglo-French Concorde was also going to be there, so it was a great opportunity for the Americans to showcase what they had been working on. The exciting part about this was that while Boeing was to Bring their new 747 to the 1969 Paris Air Show as a Boeing product, it was to be influenced by Pan Am. In fact, the plane brought to the show was branded “Boeing 747” with only a blue stripe along the fuselage, and it was one of the test planes allocated to Boeing from Pan Am before their first official production plane, number five, was ready. Boeing intentionally painted the blue stripe to have people associate the plane with Pan Am, even though Pan Am was not directly branded on the product being shown off. As intended, many in the press intimated that it had a Pan Am feel to it even though Pan Am was nowhere to be found on the plane. This was Pan Am’s give to Boeing in the 747 relationship. They would allow Boeing to showcase its product without complete influence by Pan Am, but Pan Am would absolutely influence it vis a vis stewardess placement in any promotional advertising and/or later promotional flights once it was certified to do so. The 747 that went to the 28th Paris Air Show on June 4, 1969, was plane number three (Pan Am plane number two). The plane was essentially a prototype, as it was not certified to carry any passengers yet, and featured the pre-production interior that we discussed earlier in the article. Stay tuned next week for the second part of this five-part series in which we discuss the launch interior era of 1970 to 1976 and the 747-100’s entrance into commercial service via Pan Am. While nearly every airline wanted a 747, Pan Am would be first, and Pan Am would lead the rest.

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PPVLC
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Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Thu Apr 04, 2019 11:54 pm

Thank you for the great article, looking forward for the next ones!
Cabin crew L188 707 727 737 767 A300 DC10 MD11 777 747
 
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TheFlyingDisk
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Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Fri Apr 05, 2019 12:35 am

Those First Class seat wouldn't pass muster for Economy Premium nowadays!

Amazing how far we've progressed in terms of cabin interiors. Some say not for better, but I say otherwise.
I FLY KLM+ALASKA+QATAR+MALAYSIA+AIRASIA+MALINDO
 
avianca707359b
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Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Fri Apr 05, 2019 2:51 am

Although I spent my youth flying Avianca 707’s back and forth between JFK and my family in Colombia, the memories of my early 747 and PanAm flights have unfortunately faded into the past. Thank you for putting such a huge effort into this project as it is truly an education for all of us.
In Memory of HK-1402 "Sucre" & HK-1410 "Bolivar"
 
DenverTed
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Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Fri Apr 05, 2019 3:42 am

I always wondered why they chose the door locations and the zone sizes. The wing probably dictated some placements. But what about door 4? Why didn't they make the D and E zones the same size?
 
Gangurru
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Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Fri Apr 05, 2019 5:12 am

DenverTed wrote:
I always wondered why they chose the door locations and the zone sizes. The wing probably dictated some placements. But what about door 4? Why didn't they make the D and E zones the same size?


I cannot confirm this, but I suspect it was to do with the main deck freight for the combi.

I am looking at some old seat plans for the combi version of the 747-100/200. Zone E allows enough space for the cargo/pax safety barrier and six main deck pallets (plus a seventh if the rear lavatories are removed). If door 4 was placed half way between doors 3 and 5, only four main deck pallets could be carried with significant wasted floor space.
 
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Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Fri Apr 05, 2019 5:30 am

Really great read. Thanks for sharing. :smile:
 
Rock3tman
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Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Fri Apr 05, 2019 6:23 am

The airplane which made the flight to the Paris Airshow in June of 1969 was the fourth airplane, reg. number N731PA - not the third airplane (not counting the static and fatigue test airframes). The fifth airplane was not for PAA as it was of the quite unique flight deck configuration that TWA alone insisted upon: it had vertical tape instead of normal dial gauge engine instruments!! N731PA ended in service with Evergreen out of McMinneville, OR., was scrapped in the early 2000's, and if I recall correctly that first TWA airplane, Line No. 5 - ended up as a converted tanker (with a main deck cargo door and KC-135 style refuelling boom) to the Imperial Iranian Air Force.
 
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Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Fri Apr 05, 2019 6:36 am

Thank you for this, and I look forward to future posts!
 
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Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Fri Apr 05, 2019 7:42 am

Fascinating! I grew up reading everything I could about the 747 and longing to be on it one day. Eventually it came and have been on her many times since and in all locations including 1A several times. Very pleased to have seen this historical and very informational post, cheers!
 
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CARST
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Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Fri Apr 05, 2019 8:05 am

Great article, thanks for the work.
 
oldannyboy
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Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Fri Apr 05, 2019 10:43 am

Amazing read!
Thanks!
 
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Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Fri Apr 05, 2019 11:36 am

Wonderful, very interesting and educational contribution, which brings many beautiful memories from the past back to life. Thank you so much for all the work and effort!
 
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Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Fri Apr 05, 2019 12:52 pm

Just doing a fast scroll down thru your article...and it looks GREAT! I can't wait to read it all when I have time.
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wernerga3
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Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Fri Apr 05, 2019 2:30 pm

Rock3tman wrote:
The airplane which made the flight to the Paris Airshow in June of 1969 was the fourth airplane, reg. number N731PA - not the third airplane (not counting the static and fatigue test airframes).


When they refer to planes number 1, 2 and 3 in this Pan Am newsletter (below), they are referring to Pan Am's 747s, not counting the Boeing prototype which is technically plane number 1. They say plane number 2 went to Paris in the newsletter, and I called it number 3 in the article because technically it is if you include the prototype as number 1. Sorry for any confusion here. This was my research source:

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Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Fri Apr 05, 2019 2:45 pm

I am going to LOVE this post. Excellent work so far, thank you so much for going into detail about this subject. I flew frequently on Pan Am's 747s when I was younger, but only remember the details of the Pan Am 747s from the early 80s and 90s. Keep up the great work!
 
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Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Fri Apr 05, 2019 2:45 pm

Commenting on this amazing post for bookmarking purposes.
-Doc Lightning-

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Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Fri Apr 05, 2019 2:52 pm

Great work, thanks for posting!
 
Rock3tman
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Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Fri Apr 05, 2019 9:27 pm

That letter from Boeing history above is not correct; the airplane used was PAA's #3 airplane, not their second...I was personally there at KSEA for the June evening (cooler temperatures..) departure to Paris from the ~3000' longer runway than that available at KBFI. My father, Donald Knutson, was the pilot for the flight and N731PA was his test airplane; here's an anecdote of that time which I've never seen written elsewhere: just before engine start, Mr. T.A. Wilson, then CEO of Boeing, came up to the flight deck and after a short discussion with the crew, leaned towards my father and said "whatever you do, Don, don't roll it". I was in the jumpseat no more than two feet away and was likely the only other one to hear it. My father looked up with a quizzical expression and was too flabbergasted to reply, but on arrival at Paris, he executed a very dramatic flypast descending out of the misty skies at exactly their scheduled time of arrival, passed down the main runway, and then ascending back into the clouds before landing. Photos show the registration as N731PA, (L/N 4 overall), perhaps the confusion is from another frame that was maybe earlier designated to make the trip. There was a tremendous amount of rescheduling, engine changes, etc. expended by Boeing and Pratt at that time on the JT-9 fan ovalization issue at that time and engines had to be really, really gently handled. In fact, on the return to Seattle, an engine had to be shut down shortly before arrival at KBFI, and my father had a fan section explode the week before Paris just as throttles were advanced for take off.
 
wernerga3
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Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Fri Apr 05, 2019 9:52 pm

Rock3tman wrote:
That letter from Boeing history above is not correct; the airplane used was PAA's #3 airplane, not their second...My father, Donald Knutson, was the pilot for the flight and N731PA was his test airplane


Thank you for the clarification. You are truly a primary source. Even after hundreds of hours of research, I often found that things have been improperly archived and documented over the years by both Pan Am and Boeing. It has made this project even more difficult than I anticipated because sources which are supposed to be primary, are not correct- and it takes a lot of corroborating of research to move forward.

For official editing purposes: The 747 used for the 1969 Paris Air Show was plane number 4 (Pan Am number 3), not plane number 3 (Pan Am number 2) per the Pan Am 747 memo. There was likely a last-minute change that was not properly documented at the time. Thank you Rock3tman.
 
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Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Fri Apr 05, 2019 10:10 pm

Rock3tman wrote:
That letter from Boeing history above is not correct; the airplane used was PAA's #3 airplane, not their second...I was personally there at KSEA for the June evening (cooler temperatures..) departure to Paris from the ~3000' longer runway than that available at KBFI. My father, Donald Knutson, was the pilot for the flight and N731PA was his test airplane; here's an anecdote of that time which I've never seen written elsewhere: just before engine start, Mr. T.A. Wilson, then CEO of Boeing, came up to the flight deck and after a short discussion with the crew, leaned towards my father and said "whatever you do, Don, don't roll it". I was in the jumpseat no more than two feet away and was likely the only other one to hear it. My father looked up with a quizzical expression and was too flabbergasted to reply, but on arrival at Paris, he executed a very dramatic flypast descending out of the misty skies at exactly their scheduled time of arrival, passed down the main runway, and then ascending back into the clouds before landing. Photos show the registration as N731PA, (L/N 4 overall), perhaps the confusion is from another frame that was maybe earlier designated to make the trip. There was a tremendous amount of rescheduling, engine changes, etc. expended by Boeing and Pratt at that time on the JT-9 fan ovalization issue at that time and engines had to be really, really gently handled. In fact, on the return to Seattle, an engine had to be shut down shortly before arrival at KBFI, and my father had a fan section explode the week before Paris just as throttles were advanced for take off.


My parents were part of the Pan Am team who were involved in the 747 launch, so it's very nice to see someone who's parents were on the Boeing side.

My mum in particular was quite involved on the Pan Am side, including the first flight (with everything that went wrong). Although my father passed nearly 20 years ago, via Facebook it was quite amusing to see my mum fielding questions from my cousin's friends about an online article which had used footage of the mock up discussed here and her explanation about the differences between 747s in service and that mock up.

I was always told that whist Mr Trippe saw supersonics as the future, and therefore the 747 as a stopgap which would become a freighter, others thought sonic boom would never be acceptable and envisaged the 747 as a long term solution. I was told when Harold Gray took over from Trippe two years before the 747 entered service, that the 747 begun to be seen more as the likely long term solution. Indeed my parents were always quite fond of Captain Gray and several years ago finding relaxed photos of them with him was a nice surprise.

I was also always told that the Stratocruiser was Pan Am's main reference point when developing the 747 cabin, but I don't know much further detail beyond that.

I'm also told that the 747 mock up discussed here was in fact was used for publicity purposes, including being installed at London's Waterloo Station.

However I wouldn't be born for another decade, so please excuse any inaccuracies which have been passed down through the family.

Thank you for posting all of this, in a small way it's part of my family history. It's been 9 years since I last flew in a 747, but I always felt a strange family connection aboard one of those planes. I know my parents felt a true sense of pride in having helped to make the concept of visiting a far away place possible to average people. Without wanting to start anything silly (both my parents were UK born), that really was American thinking, the Europeans were betting on Concorde, a beautiful design for the elites to enjoy without being bothered by ordinary people.
 
royalswazi
Posts: 42
Joined: Mon Oct 21, 2013 1:27 am

Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Fri Apr 05, 2019 11:13 pm

You’ve officially become my favourite poster. I loved the incredibly nerdy post about AA’s cabins, and now this. Love it :-) This is what a.net should be like, and not why Detroit isn’t served from every airport in the world. And thank you to the knowledgable people providing answers. Keep going :-)
 
akelley728
Posts: 2048
Joined: Tue Dec 07, 1999 12:35 pm

Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Fri Apr 05, 2019 11:54 pm

Fantastic article! This is why I still am on airliners.net. Looking forward to seeing the next ones!
 
Doublecatered
Posts: 11
Joined: Tue Jan 16, 2018 8:47 am

Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Sat Apr 06, 2019 12:23 am

Thanks so much for this thread
You are bringing to life a period in aviation that unfortunately is a just a memory.
They were such exciting, heady times

I look forward to your next posts
 
sspontak
Posts: 574
Joined: Thu Aug 05, 2004 2:42 am

Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Sat Apr 06, 2019 1:54 am

Great work! Very interesting. I look forward to each article. Thank you so much for sharing with the airliners.net community.
 
CaptainStubing
Posts: 1
Joined: Sat Apr 06, 2019 2:51 am

Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Sat Apr 06, 2019 3:05 am

I've been lurking on this site for years, but just joined so I could send a huge THANK YOU! I was only 7 months old when the 747 took its first flight and
it's fascinating to learn so much detail about the the early history. Incredibly interesting, looking forward to what's next!
 
ausworld
Posts: 6
Joined: Wed Feb 15, 2017 3:20 am

Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Sat Apr 06, 2019 3:29 am

Thanks for a very informative article. Look forward to the rest of them.
 
User avatar
ClassicLover
Posts: 4677
Joined: Tue Mar 09, 2004 12:27 pm

Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Sat Apr 06, 2019 9:47 am

What an excellent and detailed article! Great read... I had no idea they had planned for the upper deck to be used as an office and the nose as a lounge. It's really interesting to see the evolution of the thinking - and the Pan Am uniform, for that matter!

Superb effort and I can't wait for the next one. It's going to be an interesting journey through history. Really appreciate you taking the time to put this together. Knowing your aviation history is vitally important for any fan of the industry. Well done and thank you :)
I do enjoy a spot of flying, especially when it's not in economy!
 
vfw614
Posts: 3757
Joined: Mon Dec 10, 2001 12:34 am

Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Sat Apr 06, 2019 11:24 am

Great article. You should try to have it published properly somewhere else.
 
wernerga3
Topic Author
Posts: 212
Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2019 8:26 pm

Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Thu Apr 11, 2019 1:29 pm

PPVLC wrote:
Thank you for the great article, looking forward for the next ones!

avianca707359b wrote:
Thank you for putting such a huge effort into this project as it is truly an education for all of us.

Bricktop wrote:
Thank you for this, and I look forward to future posts!

nz2 wrote:
Very pleased to have seen this historical and very informational post, cheers!

CARST wrote:
Great article, thanks for the work.

oldannyboy wrote:
Amazing read! Thanks!

CBBW wrote:
Really great read. Thanks for sharing. :smile:

Luxair wrote:
Wonderful, very interesting and educational contribution, which brings many beautiful memories from the past back to life. Thank you so much for all the work and effort!

cathay747 wrote:
Just doing a fast scroll down thru your article...and it looks GREAT! I can't wait to read it all when I have time.

beachbum1970 wrote:
I am going to LOVE this post. Excellent work so far, thank you so much for going into detail about this subject.

DocLightning wrote:
Commenting on this amazing post for bookmarking purposes.

Keith2004 wrote:
Great work, thanks for posting!

Ryanair01 wrote:
Thank you for posting all of this, in a small way it's part of my family history.

royalswazi wrote:
You’ve officially become my favourite poster. I loved the incredibly nerdy post about AA’s cabins, and now this. Love it :-)

akelley728 wrote:
Fantastic article! This is why I still am on airliners.net. Looking forward to seeing the next ones!

Doublecatered wrote:
Thanks so much for this thread. You are bringing to life a period in aviation that unfortunately is a just a memory. They were such exciting, heady times. I look forward to your next posts

sspontak wrote:
Great work! Very interesting. I look forward to each article. Thank you so much for sharing with the airliners.net community.

CaptainStubing wrote:
I've been lurking on this site for years, but just joined so I could send a huge THANK YOU!... Incredibly interesting, looking forward to what's next!

ausworld wrote:
Thanks for a very informative article. Look forward to the rest of them.

ClassicLover wrote:
What an excellent and detailed article! Great read...Superb effort and I can't wait for the next one. It's going to be an interesting journey through history. Really appreciate you taking the time to put this together.

vfw614 wrote:
Great article.


Thank you all for the kind words. The second article has been officially posted here:
viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1420157
 
oldannyboy
Posts: 2264
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2016 8:28 am

Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Thu Apr 11, 2019 1:34 pm

royalswazi wrote:
You’ve officially become my favourite poster. I loved the incredibly nerdy post about AA’s cabins, and now this. Love it :-) This is what a.net should be like, and not why Detroit isn’t served from every airport in the world. And thank you to the knowledgable people providing answers. Keep going :-)



:checkmark: :checkmark: :checkmark: :checkmark: :checkmark: :checkmark: :laughing: :laughing: :laughing:
 
fanofjets
Posts: 2003
Joined: Thu Apr 13, 2000 2:26 am

Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Thu Apr 11, 2019 4:14 pm

Absolutely love this article and the one that follows it. Thank you for your very detailed article and description of this iconic airplane and airline. This is museum-quality!
The aeroplane has unveiled for us the true face of the earth. -Antoine de Saint-Exupery
 
DrRumack
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2018 10:07 pm

Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Fri Apr 12, 2019 1:32 am

I echo the other sentiments. This is great. Thank you.
 
aarbee
Posts: 343
Joined: Thu Aug 25, 2005 3:20 am

Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Fri Apr 12, 2019 5:40 pm

Great informative article. Will have to re read it again in detail

-R
Love the AIXes
 
wernerga3
Topic Author
Posts: 212
Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2019 8:26 pm

Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Thu Apr 18, 2019 12:11 pm

PPVLC wrote:
Thank you for the great article, looking forward for the next ones!

avianca707359b wrote:
Thank you for putting such a huge effort into this project as it is truly an education for all of us.

Bricktop wrote:
Thank you for this, and I look forward to future posts!

nz2 wrote:
Very pleased to have seen this historical and very informational post, cheers!

CARST wrote:
Great article, thanks for the work.

oldannyboy wrote:
Amazing read! Thanks!

CBBW wrote:
Really great read. Thanks for sharing. :smile:

Luxair wrote:
Wonderful, very interesting and educational contribution, which brings many beautiful memories from the past back to life. Thank you so much for all the work and effort!

cathay747 wrote:
Just doing a fast scroll down thru your article...and it looks GREAT! I can't wait to read it all when I have time.

beachbum1970 wrote:
I am going to LOVE this post. Excellent work so far, thank you so much for going into detail about this subject.

DocLightning wrote:
Commenting on this amazing post for bookmarking purposes.

Keith2004 wrote:
Great work, thanks for posting!

Ryanair01 wrote:
Thank you for posting all of this, in a small way it's part of my family history.

royalswazi wrote:
You’ve officially become my favourite poster. I loved the incredibly nerdy post about AA’s cabins, and now this. Love it :-)

akelley728 wrote:
Fantastic article! This is why I still am on airliners.net. Looking forward to seeing the next ones!

Doublecatered wrote:
Thanks so much for this thread. You are bringing to life a period in aviation that unfortunately is a just a memory. They were such exciting, heady times. I look forward to your next posts

sspontak wrote:
Great work! Very interesting. I look forward to each article. Thank you so much for sharing with the airliners.net community.

CaptainStubing wrote:
I've been lurking on this site for years, but just joined so I could send a huge THANK YOU!... Incredibly interesting, looking forward to what's next!

ausworld wrote:
Thanks for a very informative article. Look forward to the rest of them.

ClassicLover wrote:
What an excellent and detailed article! Great read...Superb effort and I can't wait for the next one. It's going to be an interesting journey through history. Really appreciate you taking the time to put this together.

vfw614 wrote:
Great article.

fanofjets wrote:
Absolutely love this article and the one that follows it. Thank you for your very detailed article and description of this iconic airplane and airline. This is museum-quality!

DrRumack wrote:
I echo the other sentiments. This is great. Thank you.

aarbee wrote:
Great informative article.


Thank you all for the kind words. The third article has been officially posted here:
viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1420685
 
wernerga3
Topic Author
Posts: 212
Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2019 8:26 pm

Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Wed Apr 24, 2019 6:49 pm

In anticipation of the next article dropping tomorrow, I wanted to give those who have not seen these threads a chance to catch up. Bump!
 
TW870
Posts: 944
Joined: Fri Jan 25, 2013 2:01 am

Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Thu Apr 25, 2019 2:43 am

I bookmarked these when you first started, and I have to say it is a total pleasure reading this. As others have said, this is what airliner.net is supposed to be.

I am reminded of a memory of being in Northwest's training center in junior high through a program with the boyscouts where we got to take rides in the simulator and get tours of facilities. This would have been in the late-1980s. They had a bunch of original 747-100 seats in the area near the simulators, those with very distinct headrests like the ones in the Pan Am mockup but with pointier edges. The padding was so much softer and more comfortable than the then-contemporary seats of the classics and -400s, and the seats were clearly sized from when the -100s were 9-abreast.

Anyway, I'm on to number 2. Thank you again!
 
wernerga3
Topic Author
Posts: 212
Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2019 8:26 pm

Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Thu Apr 25, 2019 1:40 pm

PPVLC wrote:
Thank you for the great article, looking forward for the next ones!

avianca707359b wrote:
Thank you for putting such a huge effort into this project as it is truly an education for all of us.

Bricktop wrote:
Thank you for this, and I look forward to future posts!

nz2 wrote:
Very pleased to have seen this historical and very informational post, cheers!

CARST wrote:
Great article, thanks for the work.

oldannyboy wrote:
Amazing read! Thanks!

CBBW wrote:
Really great read. Thanks for sharing. :smile:

Luxair wrote:
Wonderful, very interesting and educational contribution, which brings many beautiful memories from the past back to life. Thank you so much for all the work and effort!

cathay747 wrote:
Just doing a fast scroll down thru your article...and it looks GREAT! I can't wait to read it all when I have time.

beachbum1970 wrote:
I am going to LOVE this post. Excellent work so far, thank you so much for going into detail about this subject.

DocLightning wrote:
Commenting on this amazing post for bookmarking purposes.

Keith2004 wrote:
Great work, thanks for posting!

Ryanair01 wrote:
Thank you for posting all of this, in a small way it's part of my family history.

royalswazi wrote:
You’ve officially become my favourite poster. I loved the incredibly nerdy post about AA’s cabins, and now this. Love it :-)

akelley728 wrote:
Fantastic article! This is why I still am on airliners.net. Looking forward to seeing the next ones!

Doublecatered wrote:
Thanks so much for this thread. You are bringing to life a period in aviation that unfortunately is a just a memory. They were such exciting, heady times. I look forward to your next posts

sspontak wrote:
Great work! Very interesting. I look forward to each article. Thank you so much for sharing with the airliners.net community.

CaptainStubing wrote:
I've been lurking on this site for years, but just joined so I could send a huge THANK YOU!... Incredibly interesting, looking forward to what's next!

ausworld wrote:
Thanks for a very informative article. Look forward to the rest of them.

ClassicLover wrote:
What an excellent and detailed article! Great read...Superb effort and I can't wait for the next one. It's going to be an interesting journey through history. Really appreciate you taking the time to put this together.

vfw614 wrote:
Great article.

fanofjets wrote:
Absolutely love this article and the one that follows it. Thank you for your very detailed article and description of this iconic airplane and airline. This is museum-quality!

DrRumack wrote:
I echo the other sentiments. This is great. Thank you.

aarbee wrote:
Great informative article.

TW870 wrote:
Thank you again!


Thank you all for the kind words. The fourth article has been officially posted here:
viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1421125
 
wernerga3
Topic Author
Posts: 212
Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2019 8:26 pm

Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Wed May 01, 2019 1:35 pm

In anticipation of the final article dropping tomorrow, I wanted to give those who have not seen these threads a chance to catch up. Bump!
 
wernerga3
Topic Author
Posts: 212
Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2019 8:26 pm

Re: Pan Am 747 Cabin Era Article #1 | Pre-Production Era: An Evolving Mock-Up Used to Create Hype (1966-1970)

Thu May 02, 2019 1:41 pm

PPVLC wrote:
Thank you for the great article, looking forward for the next ones!

avianca707359b wrote:
Thank you for putting such a huge effort into this project as it is truly an education for all of us.

Bricktop wrote:
Thank you for this, and I look forward to future posts!

nz2 wrote:
Very pleased to have seen this historical and very informational post, cheers!

CARST wrote:
Great article, thanks for the work.

oldannyboy wrote:
Amazing read! Thanks!

CBBW wrote:
Really great read. Thanks for sharing. :smile:

Luxair wrote:
Wonderful, very interesting and educational contribution, which brings many beautiful memories from the past back to life. Thank you so much for all the work and effort!

cathay747 wrote:
Just doing a fast scroll down thru your article...and it looks GREAT! I can't wait to read it all when I have time.

beachbum1970 wrote:
I am going to LOVE this post. Excellent work so far, thank you so much for going into detail about this subject.

DocLightning wrote:
Commenting on this amazing post for bookmarking purposes.

Keith2004 wrote:
Great work, thanks for posting!

Ryanair01 wrote:
Thank you for posting all of this, in a small way it's part of my family history.

royalswazi wrote:
You’ve officially become my favourite poster. I loved the incredibly nerdy post about AA’s cabins, and now this. Love it :-)

akelley728 wrote:
Fantastic article! This is why I still am on airliners.net. Looking forward to seeing the next ones!

Doublecatered wrote:
Thanks so much for this thread. You are bringing to life a period in aviation that unfortunately is a just a memory. They were such exciting, heady times. I look forward to your next posts

sspontak wrote:
Great work! Very interesting. I look forward to each article. Thank you so much for sharing with the airliners.net community.

CaptainStubing wrote:
I've been lurking on this site for years, but just joined so I could send a huge THANK YOU!... Incredibly interesting, looking forward to what's next!

ausworld wrote:
Thanks for a very informative article. Look forward to the rest of them.

ClassicLover wrote:
What an excellent and detailed article! Great read...Superb effort and I can't wait for the next one. It's going to be an interesting journey through history. Really appreciate you taking the time to put this together.

vfw614 wrote:
Great article.

fanofjets wrote:
Absolutely love this article and the one that follows it. Thank you for your very detailed article and description of this iconic airplane and airline. This is museum-quality!

DrRumack wrote:
I echo the other sentiments. This is great. Thank you.

aarbee wrote:
Great informative article.

TW870 wrote:
Thank you again!

Thank you all for the kind words. The fifth, and final article has been officially posted here:
viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1421661

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