Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Jumbo Jetski

convert 747s to jetski boats
  [vote for,

British Airways just mothballed the last of their 747 Jumbo Jets.

It seems a pity not to use them for something, even if it's not as an aeroplane. I'm proposing a few simple alterations that would get them back into use again as a type of super Jetski transporter.

Here's what needs to be done:
Chop the wings short, leaving one pair of engines in place.
Take away the wheels and replace them with floating skies, capable of supporting the weight of the plane in water.

Now you have a high speed Jetski boat capable of transporting 300+ people in complete comfort.

xenzag, Oct 12 2020

Ekranoplan https://en.wikipedi...ehicle#Soviet_Union
Impressive ... [8th of 7, Oct 12 2020]

Intake Spray Deflectors https://oldmachinep...979.jpg?w=625&h=364
[bs0u0155, Oct 12 2020]

Mig29 FOD doors https://i.stack.imgur.com/FAls1.jpg
[bs0u0155, Oct 12 2020]

Here's your sign. https://www.google....252C1.000%252C1.000
[pertinax, Oct 13 2020]

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       The Ivans have considerable Prior Art in that area, <link>, but an interesting idea nonetheless.   

       One of the main problem is FOD ingestion by the turbofans - lots of birds at sea level, unfortunately.   

       [+] for the thought, though.
8th of 7, Oct 12 2020

       Are they conversions though? Meanwhile I'm sure the engines could be screened to prevent birds from entering. I'll add that bit when I propose the idea to BA.
xenzag, Oct 12 2020

       // I'm sure the engines could be screened to prevent birds from entering. //   

       You are ? Well, if that's correct, there are people at Rolls-Royce and Engine Alliance who will be delighted to make you instantly very wealthy in return for solving something that's been a major, dangerous, insoluble problem for turbine engines for the last seventy years, and is no closer to a workable fix.. .
8th of 7, Oct 12 2020

       Teflon coated, perforated pointed metal cones placed over each engine intake. There now. That was one of the easiest problems I ever solved.
xenzag, Oct 12 2020

       Yes, well done, absolutely brilliant, perfect in every respect except for the tiny detail that it's been tried (by the USN) and it didn't work; the airflow into the compressor was so restricted that the engine would only just idle, and certainly couldn't produce useful thrust.
8th of 7, Oct 12 2020

       //I'm sure the engines could be screened to prevent birds from entering//   

       The Soviets had a go with spheres mounted in front of the intakes <link>. I can't find any info on performance changes, but they later removed them. These were mainly for deflecting water spray which was an issue even on high up engines, on a massive craft on a smooth lake. The Atlantic wouldn't have been so kind.   

       The Mig29, among others <link> has FOD doors. They don't flow much air and blow-in doors on top are also required. They're to give the Mig29 capability on roads/rough fields but they're not practical beyond taxi/low weight take off. The fighter can sort-of take the performance hit because it's so overpowered compared to an airliner.
bs0u0155, Oct 12 2020

       //Yes, well done, absolutely brilliant// Gets made into a badge to wear. Rolls Royce alerted....perforated production of cones begins. 8th made to walk around the M25 along the central reservation, wearing a dunce's cap while pulling a double bed complete with heavily stained bare mattress, as passing motorists laugh and throw paper planes at him made from the labels of Kitty Cat tins.
xenzag, Oct 13 2020

       //I'm sure the engines could be screened to prevent birds from entering//

Surely all that is needed is some clever scanning radar looking at the space in front of each engine while in flight? If something is detected, there is the high-pitched whirr of gun-mounts turning and the foreign body is automatically shot out of the sky with some sort of explosive ammunition (resulting in fragments small enough such that engine ingestion is not a problem).
hippo, Oct 13 2020

       That sounds more like a reward than a punishment!
pocmloc, Oct 13 2020

       //foreign body is automatically shot out of the sky//..... Have you been taking those 8th tablets again?
xenzag, Oct 13 2020

       OK, OK - then a more realistic* (and arguably more entertaining for the passengers) solution would be an elegantly engineered robot arm mounted next to the engine, equipped with a tennis racket and lightning-sharp reflexes which would swat birds out of the way before they got ingested into the engine.

*(less realistic)
hippo, Oct 13 2020

       Tell us about the sentry guns again, the ones with the explosive ammunition ... we like that bit.
8th of 7, Oct 13 2020

       YOu could have a sign, saying "NO BIRDS". Actually we can't assume the birds can read English. So perhaps a bird silhouette with a big red diagonal line through it.
pocmloc, Oct 13 2020

       Could the engines be modified to run underwater? For fuel you would need something that reacts explosively with water.
pocmloc, Oct 13 2020

       Microcrystalline potassium metal ...   

       // we can't assume the birds can read English //   

       They could be illegal migrants*, in which case the sentry guns are very useful.   

       // taking those 8th tablets again? //   

       <Rapid checking/>   

       No, all our phones, tablets, netbooks, laptops, desktops, servers and all other computer kit is present and correct.   


       // walk around the M25 along the central reservation, wearing a dunce's cap while pulling a double bed //   

       We will be delighted to do that, as soon as [xen] returns from piloting the first test-flight of the cone-equipped aircraft. Bobbing helplessly in the ocean because of a lack of forward thrust doesn't count.   

       *But not African swallows**, which are, of course, non-migratory.   

       **Unless the aircraft is in Africa.
8th of 7, Oct 13 2020

       Here's the sign (link).
pertinax, Oct 13 2020

       //[xen] returns from piloting the first test-flight of the cone-equipped aircraft.// Not flights.... Rem this is a jetski boat, so it won't be travelling at much faster than 50 knots. No problems are anticipated, so the bed and rancid mattress are on their way, along with the dunce's cap. Free tins of Kitty Cat are being handed out at South Mimms services together with instructions on how to get the label off and fold it into a paper plane.
xenzag, Oct 13 2020

       Surely a turboprop engine, which would make more sense at boat speeds than a turbofan anyway, could be designed in such a way to have shielded turbo intakes. This thing isn’t going 300 mph.   

       And if you want better efficiency, just turn some screws in the water. Sorted.
RayfordSteele, Oct 14 2020


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