A group of German aviation enthusiasts has launched a bid to save an ex-Lufthansa Boeing 707 located in Hamburg. Last week Hamburg Airport revealed that the historic aircraft would be scrapped over the coming months, with key parts sold at auction.
The Boeing 707 is a historic aircraft, both for aviation and Lufthansa. For the German flag carrier, the aircraft brought about the start of the jet age. However, despite the aircraft’s historic status, two Boeing 707s in the Lufthansa livery are currently destined for the scrap heap. While one had fallen into a state of disrepair, there are hopes that the other can be saved.
Bid to save D-ABOD
It is fair to say that not everybody was happy when Hamburg Airport revealed that a former Lufthansa Boeing 707 would be sent to the scrap heap. There was an outpouring of disappointment from aviation fans worldwide that the airport was giving up on such a historic aircraft.
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To preserve the aircraft and its history, a new group called Verein zur Rettung der Boeing 707 D-ABOD (Association for the rescue of the Boeing 707 D-ABOD) has been formed.
The group ultimately aims to secure the aircraft’s future and has already written an open letter to the CEO of Hamburg Airport, calling for a meeting to discuss its fate. Hamburg Airport said the decision had been made given maintenance costs tied with the COVID-19 pandemic.
However, the group hoping to save the aircraft reports that the German Technik Museum, home to a Concorde and its Soviet equivalent, was not approached to help keep the aircraft. To reach its goal, the group has already been in contact with professionals in engineering, law, and commerce, in addition to potential sponsors.
A Hamburg Airport spokesperson told Simple Flying,
“In order to find a solution and to be able to receive the 707 professionally, the airport was in very close contact with around a dozen interested parties for months – from individuals to aviation enthusiast initiatives to museums. Ultimately, however, no solution could be found. This was mainly due to the extremely high transport costs associated with maintaining it and, according to a cost estimate, can easily fall into the mid six-digit range.”
A historic aircraft
At 60 years old, D-ABOD has been in the aviation industry for some time now. The aircraft was delivered new to Lufthansa in April 1960. Under the name Frankfurt, it flew for the German flag carrier for 15 years. Having been removed from service, D-ABOD became a training aid for Lufthansa Technik. After another 24 years, the aircraft was sold to Hamburg Airport for €1 ($1.20).
In the years since the aircraft has been everything from a museum piece to a film prop. At one point, the aircraft wore a special Hamburg Airport livery. However, today it is dressed in the Lufthansa livery once more.
What do you think of the attempt to save D-ABOD. Do you support the effort, or is it time the plane was finally scrapped? Let us know what you think and why in the comments!