First came makeovers for our personal appearance then our homes and offices. Today, renovating aircraft interiors is the hottest trend—and for good reason. Not only does modifying the interior create a more pleasant flying experience, but it can also make the space far more functional, as in better lighting, more storage and efficient work areas.
There are other benefits, too. New alternatives can be substantially lighter, thereby reducing fuel consumption. Newly engineered materials such as upholstery often last longer and resist staining and tarnishing. What’s more, smart upgrades to the interior can make an aircraft more attractive to buyers and increase its selling price.
From simple to extravagant
When it comes to an interior makeover, the possibilities are limited only by FAA regulations, weight and space. The rest is up to the imagination. Modifications can be simple and classic or, when cost isn’t a factor, as extravagant as you like.
If you’re on a budget, simply replacing worn carpet and recovering divans and seats with updated materials and colors can make a dramatic impact on an aging interior. Also, changing the style of hardware used for door pulls, towel holders and faucets will quickly update the décor. Create a custom look on a budget by choosing basic cabinets and having special moldings applied.
If you’re fortunate to have robust funds, luxuries abound. How about a shower in the lavatory? Gold leaf hardware or custom-designed cup holders with precious stone inlays? Or a mural on the ceiling?
Options for business aircraft
Elegant, functional interiors are no longer the domain of heavy iron aircraft. Operators of light to medium jets and turboprops want convenience and beauty, too. Elliott Aviation’s designers, craftsmen and engineers are making that possible with world-class designs scaled for these aircraft.
Designers use resources judiciously so as not to overpower the space or the budget. For example, they may use marble veneers on countertops in the galley and lavatory but leave it off the walls. Artists may be asked to create beautiful faux finishes—from Venetian plaster to natural stone—that look like the real thing but cost (and weigh) a lot less.
Operators of small to medium jets can enjoy big aircraft conveniences such as a microwave or mini-dishwasher, as well as custom cabinetry with specialized drawers. To make the most of space, convertible amenities offer an excellent option. Tables with lifts can be raised and lowered to create a conference table, desk, dining table or coffee table. Other options include sofas that can transform into bunk beds and fully berthing seats that allow passengers to nap during flight.
Something as simple as lighting is being transformed with fiber optics and LEDs. They offer full color, adjustable lighting that can be integrated into the décor. Plus, they’re lightweight and consume less energy than conventional lighting.
Perhaps the most popular option installed by Elliott Aviation during an aircraft interior modification is the entertainment center. Fully customizable, the center includes a large screen display, DVD/CD player, Xbox gaming system and Internet access.
Regardless of the aircraft’s size and type, the best advice is to take advantage of downtime required for the interior upgrade and save money by having additional jobs performed at the same time. For example, you can reduce King Air noise levels substantially throughout the cabin by installing Elliott Aviation’s Sound Management System. Or you can take advantage of Elliott’s wide range of turbine aircraft STCs for avionics installations. Since both modifications require some degree of interior disassembly for equipment installation and new wiring, it makes good sense to do them while the old interior is removed.