THE BEST Airplanes

Where Planes go to Die

Where Planes go to Die

You’d think that you wouldn’t get rid of an airplane until it was beyond its useful life, but it turns out that some airlines dump their older jumbo jets because they’re just not cost effective to operate. Half as Interesting takes us on a one-way flight to Victorville, California to see where these flying behemoths are often retired.

Making an R/C Ekranoplan

Making an R/C Ekranoplan

Back in the 1960s through the 1980s, the Soviet Union developed a low-flying aircraft that could skim like a hovercraft over the water. R/C flying enthusiast Peter Sripol decided to see if he could build a working miniature replica of the so-called “Caspian Sea Monster,” and attempted to keep it flying just inches off the ground and water.

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Radial Engine Drink Coasters

Radial Engine Drink Coasters

Plane Pieces’ drink coasters are the perfect gift for aviation enthusiasts. They’re made using authentic Pratt & Whitney gears from vintage WWII radial airplane engines. Each one is encased in clear resin, surrounded with a machined aluminum outer ring, and has a protective bumper underneath. Sold individually, or in sets of four.

Propeller Tip Vortexes

Propeller Tip Vortexes

When an airplane encounters just the right weather conditions, its wingtips and propellers can generate visible patterns in the air. Redditor cburnett shared this wild footage of the patterns made by the four props on a Hercules C-130. A google search for “propeller vortexes” turns up more incredible images of the phenomenon.

Potato Cannon Glider

Potato Cannon Glider

There are thousands of videos out there showing how to make a potato cannon. But this clip from The Backyard Scientist shows how to use one to launch a glider. Working with his pal Joe – with a nod to the guys at FliteTest – they work out the most balanced and airworthy glider design.

Folding Stunt Airplanes

Folding Stunt Airplanes

Want to fold some awesome paper airplanes? Learn from the best. John Collins aka “The Paper Airplane Guy” got together with WIRED to show off some of his stunt flyers, and how to fold your own. Be sure to check out the second video for more detailed folding instructions.

LEGO Air Force One 747

LEGO Air Force One 747

LEGO and aviation enthusiast BigPlanes shows off an incredible custom build – a scale replica of U.S. Air Force One. He used roughly 25,000 bricks to build the 6-foot-long model of the 747 jumbo jet, which features a fully-detailed interior. Be sure to check out his YouTube channel for more amazing LEGO aircraft.

A380 Night Landing

A380 Night Landing

This amazing 4K footage from High Pressure Aviation Films is the closest that most of us will ever get to landing a modern jumbo jet. The view from the cockpit of the Airbus A380 offers up a fantastic show of nighttime illumination outside, and digital displays inside.

Air Travel in the 1930s

Air Travel in the 1930s

While we’re tempted to complain when dealing with the inconveniences of air travel, the fact is, getting around used to be so much worse. Bright Side looks back at the early days of commercial flight, and some of its many downsides, from zero climate control, to constant refueling stops, to far more turbulent flying.

Paper Airplane Machine Gun V2.0

Paper Airplane Machine Gun V2.0

YouTuber Papierfliegerei made a significantly better version of his playful gun. The portable paper plane factory now has a modular construction for easier repair, and is more durable and more powerful. It can make and fire up to 120 paper planes in a minute.

Airplanes from Drones

Airplanes from Drones

During the opening ceremony for China’s 2019 Nanchang Flight Convention, a veritable army of 800 illuminated drones took to the sky, arranging themselves to conjure images of a propeller plane, a jumbo jet, and a fighter jet, among other images to kick off the air show.

Leaf Blower RC Airplane Mk2

Leaf Blower RC Airplane Mk2

After a earlier and not very successful attempt, maker Peter Sripol and his friends managed to build a lightweight, remote-controlled airplane that gets its propulsion entirely from an off-the-shelf leaf blower. By improving upon the materials and aerodynamics, this version fared better in the air… eventually.

Aircraft Instrument Coasters

Aircraft Instrument Coasters

The perfect gift for aviation fanatics, this set of round nickel coasters features images of four critical instruments from an airplane cockpit – the turn indicator, the attitude indicator, the heading indicator, and the altimeter. Backed with felt to protect your coffee table.

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Aviation Wall Clock/Thermometer

Aviation Wall Clock/Thermometer

Aviation buffs will dig Trintec’s wall piece, which combines an analog clock and thermometer, both designed to look like analog cockpit gauges. Choose from vintage or modern styles,in altimiter, gyro, horizon, and VOR variants. Measures 15″h x 7.5″w x 2″d, and the clock runs on a single “AA” battery.

Airplane Fuselage Doors

Airplane Fuselage Doors

MotoArt creates furniture and interior pieces using parts from actual retired aircraft. One of the largest items they make is a conference room wall and sliding door from the fuselage of a Boeing airplane. The exposed aluminum looks amazing in matte or polished mirror finishes. Requires a minimum 25-foot expanse.

Why Can’t Planes Fly Backwards?

Why Can’t Planes Fly Backwards?

While jet engines do have the ability to reverse their thrust to slow down, or even taxi backwards, it’s not possible for an airplane to do the same in the sky. Bright Side provides a layperson’s explanation of the physics and safety issues that prevent this from happening.

Dueling R/C Concordes

Dueling R/C Concordes

Watch a pair of incredible scale models of the iconic Concorde supersonic airliner take to the skies. While neither of these remote-controlled flyers can actually break the speed of sound, they still have jet engines, and look and sound absolutely insane.

Inside a Fireworks Stunt Plane

Inside a Fireworks Stunt Plane

We’ve seen a plane shoot off fireworks before, and it’s pretty amazing. Now, thanks to all-around good guy Tom Scott and the guys at British aerobatics display team Aerosparx, we’ve been granted front-row access to a practice run, along with an explanation of how they pull off their flying spectacle.

Endless Paper Airplane

Endless Paper Airplane

In this brief clip from ViralVideoLab, they show off a simple way to make a paper airplane remain airborne for a very long time. The trick requires just the right kind of plane, and a series of small fans to keep it circling in the air. You can find folding instructions for the plane here.

Airplane Pockets

Airplane Pockets

Let’s face it, air travel can suck. Make it a little less sucky by having easy access to your personal items, and a clean tray table. This washable fabric cover slides over tray tables, adding pocket organizers for your gear, while covering the grubby and germy tray surface.

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Jumbo Jet Formation Flying

Jumbo Jet Formation Flying

To celebrate 50 years in business, airplane manufacturer Airbus took to the skies with a series of six of its jumbo jets, flying them side by side for a spectacle rarely seen with anything but small planes. Along for the ride were aa A220, A320, A330, A350 XWB, A380, and the ginormous BelugaXL airlifter.

Where Hollywood Shoots Plane Scenes

Where Hollywood Shoots Plane Scenes

Insider gives us a tour of Air Hollywood, a movie studio in Los Angeles where movies, TV shows and music videos shoot airplane scenes. They have configurable airplane sets made from actual planes. They even have a terminal set and a warehouse full of props.

Boeing Wheel Coffee Table

Boeing Wheel Coffee Table

These coffee tables are each made from a wheel of a Boeing 737 or 747 airliner. The wheel is mounted on a base that lets it spin on its original bearings. Touch of Modern is offering big discounts on this upcycled furniture.

Airplane Laser Light Show

Airplane Laser Light Show

The daredevil stunt plane Scandinavian Catwalk performed this epic light show at Australia’s 2019 Avalon Airshow. Watch in awe as the plane shoots a stream of fireworks and laser beams, perfectly timed to the music, all while performing flips and rolls in the sky.

Airplane Boarding Methods

Airplane Boarding Methods

CGP Grey explores the different ways that airplane passengers can be grouped for boarding, why it takes so long to board in the first place, and why airlines don’t use more efficient means. We love how letting people board at random is actually a viable solution.

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