High-Flying Retirement: Engineer Transforms Boeing 727 Into A Home

By Ayomitide F

Have you ever heard about those mystical woods right on the edge of Oregon? Seriously, they’re like a page ripped out of a mystery novel, chock-full of secrets and all that cool stuff. But here’s the kicker, guess what we found out there? An old-school commercial plane just chilling smack dab in the middle of nowhere!

Imagine this giant vintage aircraft, like a time traveler taking a break amidst a sea of trees and nature like it’s the most normal thing in the world. But don’t be fooled by the randomness, my friend. There’s a genius mastermind pulling the strings, orchestrating this wild spectacle. He’s like the Picasso of unconventional ideas. This is going to be the wildest episode of MTV Cribs that never made it to the screen. So, buckle up and get ready to dive in!

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What is it doing here

Alright, let’s peel back the layers a bit. Those aviation aficionados are practically certain we’re dealing with none other than a Boeing 727, that awesome vintage jetliner that used to be the bee’s knees for many airlines. But how in the world did this thing end up right in the heart of a forest?

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Flashback to 1999, enter Bruce—the guy with a vision. He decides to snag an out-of-service airplane and gently places it down on his lush woodland property. Now, you might scratch your head and think, “What in the world was he thinking?”

The Right Spot

One of the reasons behind its impressive size is to make it incredibly conspicuous in case of an emergency landing, whether it’s in the vast ocean, a scorching desert, or even a dense forest. But Bruce had an entirely different game plan in mind!

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Picture this: the seasoned engineer goes all-in, coughing up a staggering $100,000 for a plane, waving goodbye to its glory days, and waving hello to the scrapyard. And then, out of the blue, he’s like, “Let’s give this beauty a second life!”

The Mastermind

The road leading to this remarkable acquisition has been nothing less than an epic adventure. After lounging in well-deserved retirement for quite a while, Bruce decided to seize the moment and dive into the world of plane ownership. Being a retired electrical engineer, he has a unique perspective on obsolete planes, as you’ve already figured.

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A wise man once said: “When done right, the charm of turning a retired jetliner into a home comes from its incredible technology and the beauty of its sculpted structure,” This wise man, Bruce, was determined to prove himself right!

Hard as rocks

He has a genuine appreciation for the meticulous work that goes into crafting a plane, especially when it’s as iconic as the Boeing 727. He labels it a true masterpiece in the realm of aviation, and his admiration for this grand bird knows no bounds.

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As Bruce tells the tale, the Boeing 727 relentlessly pushed the boundaries of aerospace science during its initial debut. Another factor that transformed Bruce into a dedicated superfan was this magnificent aircraft’s sheer robustness and resilience. It possessed precisely the qualities he sought in creating a home in the heart of a remote wilderness…

It’s an Aerospace Castle

Even in retirement, Bruce felt the spark of inspiration, testing the waters of his creative mind upon acquiring the Boeing 727. Luckily, the plane came complete with all of its original parts, which was a stroke of good fortune for him.

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And so, Bruce embarked on his adventure, diving into the intricacies of wiring, seamlessly integrating home systems into the plane, and even setting up some lighting. He invested $100,000 to acquire the plane, but he had been diligently saving up, all in the pursuit of creating what he affectionately dubbed the ultimate aerospace castle.

Stripping Everything Down

Just a heads-up, the Boeing 727 has the capacity to house over 200 passengers, and that’s not even including the cargo and flight attendants. Pretty roomy, huh? You might be wondering why Bruce would choose to turn a plane into his home despite those bulky seats taking up so much space.

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When Bruce took out all the seats from the plane, he gained an extra 47 meters and a staggering 1,066 square feet of floor space. With this abundance of room, the plane became Bruce’s personal playground, opening up a world of exciting concepts for him to explore and enjoy!

He did it for us!

Bruce’s aspirations extended beyond enjoying his plane-turned-home in solitude. He was bursting with eagerness to share his remarkable project with the entire world. On top of that, Bruce had this incredibly cool idea to maximize the potential of the plane and contribute to the Portland community.

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His dream was to fashion a hip space where he could host lost of events, from concerts to festivals—just about anything you can imagine! Now, picture this: the plane’s wings transformed into an epic stage where bands would dazzle the crowd, and Bruce, the mastermind, would set the scene ablaze with some seriously cool lighting.

The Eight Wonder of the World

Bruce harbored this awesome notion of transforming the plane into something far beyond just a concert venue—he envisioned it as a genuine tourist hotspot! He pictured hosting concerts and festivals on board, as well as providing visitors with incredible tours of the fully decked-out aircraft once everything was in place.

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Imagine the fascinating adventure it would be for tourists! But here’s the real kicker: he could also extend a roof to travelers in need of a crash pad. And the best part? He wouldn’t ask for a single dime, because Bruce is just that big-hearted!


Bruce had a handful of motives for choosing the woods as his residence in the first place. One of them was his unwavering commitment to environmental consciousness. He genuinely cared about the well-being of the planet, leading him to adopt a sustainable, off-the-land lifestyle.

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“It’s like an endless adventure, always keeping me entertained and feeding my passion for old-school technology. Having an assortment of cool gadgets brings me so much joy. And when those little toys come together in a massive one, it’s pure bliss!” Ooooh, our fabulous old-timer is like a kid in the candy shop!

No Fly-zone

The most jaw-dropping thing about Bruce’s purchase was that he had no plans to actually fly the plane. From the get-go, this retired engineer was totally cool with ditching the engines. And let’s not forget having those engines would have seriously messed up his budget!

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Engines? Bruce shrugged them off, seeing no purpose for propulsion when he had no intentions of relocating the plane. No MTV Cribs crew would be capturing those rusty behemoths, that’s for sure. With this in mind, he could now funnel his resources and efforts into other fascinating aspects of the aircraft…

Whole lotta space

After yanking out those seats from the plane, Bruce found himself with a vast space beyond his wildest dreams. And he didn’t just call it quits there! Bruce unleashed his inner creativity and enthusiasm, channeling his energy into transforming various sections of the plane into his own playground.

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Isn’t that just incredibly cool?! Plus, there were tons of compartments and clever nooks he could put to use. Picture playing hide and seek with Bruce; you can bet he’d always be the master of the game… after all, he’s the ingenious old-timer who brought this whole vision to life!

No More Chores?

Unlike most homes where chores are a necessary evil, Bruce’s place requires minimal work to keep it shipshape. Thanks to the plane’s sealed pressure canisters, there’s hardly any dust buildup, and he is rarely bothered with pesky bug infestations too!

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But that doesn’t mean Bruce gets to slack off. The outside of his place takes a beating from the elements, so this restless creative still has to deal with pesky weeds and dirt. And in case you are wondering how he does it: He just grabs a high-pressure water hose to tackle the job!

In the beginning 

Before Bruce got his hands on his Boeing 727, he had a really tough time finding one. At first, he couldn’t even track down any available in the U.S. So, he had to broaden his search until he stumbled upon one all the way in Athens, Greece. Quite the ultimate search, right?

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When Greek Olympic Airlines decided to retire one of their planes, Bruce saw an opportunity and jumped right in! He had the plane taken apart, shipped all the way to Portland, Oregon, and began the exciting task of putting it back together.

Breaking the Bank

$100,000 is a big ol’ chunk of change, and that’s what Bruce had to cough up to get his hands on that Boeing 727. But man, after a ton of blood, sweat, and tears—not to mention cash—he shelled out more than $220,000 for the whole shebang!

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That’s when Bruce thought it was time to call in the cavalry and get help from a salvage company to cut costs. Smart move, right? So, they decided to strip off any extra fancy plane parts. Bruce would’ve loved to keep it all, but he understood it made financial sense.

I Shouldn’t Have

Honestly, Bruce’s only real regret in the whole project was teaming up with the salvage company. Everything else he did was totally worth it. But you know what? If he could go back and redo it all, he’d hold onto every part of the plane.

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Bruce’s new home didn’t come without its challenges. While he could have definitely given it a major boost with those parts to make it even better, he ended up having to reinvest in all of them from scratch. It turned out to be quite a challenging process, to be completely honest.

They Took It All 

The salvage crew went all out, stripping the plane down to its bones, snatching up anything they deemed valuable back in the day. They didn’t just halt at the paneling for shade; even the carpeting vanished, revealing the Boeing’s Plexiglas flooring in all its glory.

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Now, Bruce faced a formidable challenge: tracking down those elusive replacement parts. Let me tell you, it was far from a cakewalk. But you know what? When it comes to conjuring up miracles in a tight spot, our guy Bruce is the one to count on!

Shaking it Up

Over time, Bruce made some major interior changes to the plane. Even though the salvage company may have caused a bit of a mess, Bruce worked his magic and managed to pull it off. First things first, he got rid of those overhead compartments.

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Those boxes were stuffed with oxygen masks, lights, wires, and buttons. Taking away those things would definitely create a mess, but Bruce wasn’t bothered by it at all. He understood that he had to roll up his sleeves and get dirty to make his dream come true.

The Ultimate Search

As Bruce glanced around the plane, he whipped out his magnifying glasses and flashlight, and the coolest things started popping up left and right. There were loads of nifty nooks and crannies just waiting to be repurposed for his future home. How awesome is that?!

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He began to imagine some really awesome features, like super spacious storage setups and cozy little rooms for whatever purpose he saw fit. The project was taking off and turning into way more than he had ever imagined. That’s just Bruce, always going for it and reaching for the stars!

In Living Color

Even in retirement, Bruce’s zest for life knows no bounds. He not only relishes the ample time he spends at his plane-turned-home in the heart of Oregon but also dedicates a substantial portion of his time to his second abode in the beautiful land of Japan.

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Yeah, it’s pretty wild—this dude spends nearly half of his year there! He’s absolutely smitten with everything about the Land of the Rising Sun. I mean, seriously, head over heels in love! Can’t really blame him, though. Japan’s got the whole package these days!

Another One?!

So, it looks like Bruce wasn’t done with his dream of turning a Boeing 727 into a home in Oregon. The retired engineer was dead set on doing it all over again, but this time in Japan! Our man, Bruce, is going global!

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The man’s got a serious love for living in planes! After getting so much happiness and learning from his little pet project, he’s all hyped up to give it another shot. Since he can’t fly his Oregon plane, he’s got this idea to build a similar cozy haven in his second home turf.


Bruce was perfectly fine with parting ways with the standard plane elements in his new abode, but there were some parts he was genuinely thrilled to preserve. Take the cockpit, for instance —it’s pretty much exactly as it was when he first acquired the plane.

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Bruce loves hanging out in the cockpit, checking out all those wires and buttons. But he’s also thrilled about transforming it into his very own man cave. You can catch him up there, just chilling like a boss and binge-watching Sci-Fi movies.

What’s next?

Bruce knows exactly what he wants for his Japan home, but that doesn’t mean it’s going to be a walk in the park like his last project, the Boeing 727. This time around, he’s determined to keep his new plane totally untouched and original, with no removals whatsoever.

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Scouring the market for a decommissioned plane for sale has proven to be quite the formidable quest, yet Bruce remains unwavering in his pursuit of his second dream. He’s been relentlessly searching for that elusive deal that fits his budget. Anyhow, count us among the cheerleaders rooting for him!


Doing this for a second time has its perks for Bruce! He can totally learn from his previous blunders and make converting the plane way smoother. The major goof he wants to avoid at all costs is messing up the budget again. So, fingers crossed for a hiccup-free round two! 

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Purchasing and converting a large aircraft is an ambitious endeavor, laden with costs at every turn. Even so, Bruce went over budget with his initial Boeing 727 home project. But, you know what? If he’s able to secure a plane in Japan, things are bound to work out better than they did last time!

The North Pole

It’s a real struggle for Bruce to keep his home warm during winter. Cleaning up is not a big deal, but the real challenge lies in heating up the place. The house is just so spacious, making it tough to maintain a cozy temperature.

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Good old Bruce has fully adapted to the bone-chilling cold inside the plane. How resilient can this guy be?! But hey, if you’re considering a visit, it’s a smart move to pack some extra blankets! And if fortune smiles upon you, Bruce might just let you chill in the comfiest nooks of the plane.

Getting Cozy

To tackle the temperature challenge, Bruce devised some ingenious solutions. First and foremost, he ensured the installation of the appropriate furniture, and he absolutely aced it! However, it wasn’t a breeze. He had to contend with all those bothersome plane wires and other technical details.

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Quite a challenge, we must say! Besides that, Bruce is always diligent about staying warm by bundling up in layers and even bringing heaters into the house. But let us tell you; he’s one tough cookie – nothing seems to faze him!

Home Sweet Plane

Even though Bruce’s house may stand out from your typical home, the stuff he does there isn’t all that different from what we all do. He still takes care of the usual chores like cleaning, vacuuming, and keeping himself spick and span, just like the rest of us.

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Bruce is a detail virtuoso; he leaves no aspect unattended or nook unpolished. The unmistakable sign that you’re in Bruce’s domain is the remarkable sense of relaxation his guests experience during their stay. You’d never even suspect you were inside an airplane!

Say what?—Shower Time!

Of course, it’s no wonder the plane didn’t come with a shower. Who would have thought, right? And just like most of us, Bruce couldn’t imagine living without one. So, even though there were some basic plumbing and wiring in the plane, he had to do some serious tweaking to make it happen. 

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He set up a basic cabin and rigged an electric pump that produced hot and cold water. Gotta have those essential comforts, you know? Surprisingly, this creative solution worked just as perfectly as you can imagine. Bruce has been fresh & clean ever since!

Chatty Catty

You might assume that living in the middle of nowhere would disconnect someone from society, but surprisingly, Bruce’s new abode has actually led to him making more friends than ever. Settling deep within the woods hasn’t put a damper on his ability to hang out with a diverse range of people.

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He’s extended a warm welcome to countless guests, generously sharing his home and experiences. His endeavor has woven an incredible network of connections, and he’s forged friendships with people worldwide. After all, who wouldn’t want to be friends with a retired engineer who calls a Boeing 727 his home?

A Clean Freak

Another facet of Bruce’s life that becomes evident from his plane-dwelling experience is his unwavering commitment to staying in good shape and keeping well. His lifestyle remains quite uncomplicated, with just a microwave and toaster at his disposal for warming up meals. 

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His diet is typically nutritious, frequently sourced from nature itself. After all, the nearby forested areas offer a diverse range of fruits and veggies. When Bruce isn’t eating healthily, he’s keeping himself super active, tackling loads of chores. And that’s not even the whole story…

World War Z!

If you checked out all the cans and preserved grub Bruce has stashed at home, you’d probably guess he’s gearing up for a zombie invasion or something. Except for the fresh produce he grabs elsewhere, his diet mostly revolves around boxed and canned stuff that could outlast a decade.

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Fortunately, the retired engineer has a convenience store nearby his plane’s location, allowing him to restock his plane’s kitchen whenever necessary. Given his penchant for preparedness, it’s safe to say he’ll keep those canned goods well-stocked for the foreseeable future!

Bathroom Business

Every aircraft comes with a restroom, and Bruce cleverly made the most of this existing feature. Among all the plane’s aspects, this was the only one he didn’t want to change at all. You gotta appreciate the sentimentality on display here!

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He didn’t do much except tweak the plumbing to make it cozier. The only giveaway that you’re in a plane restroom is the presence of a space-saving toilet and a sink. Who knows, this might just spark a revival of modern airplane-like restrooms!

Maintaining the “Sparkle and Snazziness”

Bruce has a talent for maintaining pristine hygiene in every aspect of his life, without exception. Whether he’s stepping into the shower, utilizing the bathroom, or brushing his teeth, Bruce ensures he always has the proper tools to remain fresh and immaculate.

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Additionally, he’s equipped the airplane with its very own laundry room, ensuring that his clothes remain spotless and pleasantly scented. He’s even open to his guests using the laundry room if they plan to stay for an extended period.

Advocate for Recycling Planes

Because of his efforts over the past few decades, Bruce is strongly convinced that even if they’re quite old, all planes should be put to good use and not left unused. So, he eventually got involved with the Aircraft Fleet Recycling Association (AFRA). 

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This nonprofit group convinced him to switch gears: rather than using a freight wagon to build a house, why not transform a decommissioned airplane into something cool? AFRA is all about recycling aircraft for different creative uses. Our guy has really come a long way!

He is an inspiration!

Absolutely! Although it’s evident that Bruce employed his intelligence and creativity to convert the airplane into a livable space, he firmly believes that anyone could achieve a similar accomplishment. “I’m not some alien or robot—just an ordinary person with all the typical human vulnerabilities,” he emphasized.

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“If I can pull this off, chances are you can give it a shot too. But like with anything, how well you do depends on what you know, the things you’ve been through, but primarily on how bad you want it.” That is quite the enlightenment, Bruce!

A Day in the Life!

Just so you know! Mr. Boeing 727 isn’t solely focused on his impressive plane. While he’s not binge-watching Ozark on Netflix, his day-to-day routine is fascinating. Most mornings, Bruce gets up, tends to his regular duties, welcomes visitors, and immerses himself in some of his cherished hobbies.

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Although Bruce experiences different days regularly, he is a sucker for habits, like most of us. They give him a sense of order with what to do in his precious time. Oh and he’s also into sharing his life with the world through his website, AirplaneHome.com.