Empire Airlines F.28 Solid Maple Tail Panel
Designed and crafted in the United States, this laser engraved solid maple panel depicts the vertical tail of the Fokker F.28 Fellowship in the markings of Empire Airlines (UR). The F.28 was designed as a simpler, more efficient jetliner than its competitors, and was targeted toward smaller airlines requiring a jet with a high degree of ground handling independence, good economics, and modest passenger loads.
Seating up to 65 passengers in its initial Mk.1000 form that entered service in 1969, the F.28 used a large number of aerodynamic spoilers to facilitate low speed, short field operations, had a single cabin entry door with integral airstair, and underfloor holds could be loaded without the need for ramp service equipment.
Coming to the market after the BAC 1-11, DC-9, and Boeing 737 were already firmly established, 241 F.28s were built through 1987, most going to small airlines in small numbers. Later development of the F.28 led to the Fokker 100 and Fokker 70.
Each tail panel is engraved to recall an F.28 airline operator with carrier markings on one side, and a brief description of the airline on the reverse side. The F.28 tail panel is approximately 2.6 inches (6.6 cm) tall, and 6.5 inches (16.5 cm) wide, with a matching maple base that measures 5.1 inches (12.9 cm) long and 1.3 inches (3.3 cm) wide.
The tail panel is cut from solid maple with a thickness of 1/8 inch (0.3 cm). The laser cutting and engraving produces a rich caramel-colored edge and image, that contrasts well against the wood grain of the panel. A low-gloss polyurethane finish protects the panel, and each will have its own characteristic wood graining, reflecting the position on the board that it was cut from.
These tail panels are a special way to recall a classic airliner and the airlines that flew it!
F.28 Tail Panel Q&A:
1. How technically accurate is the F.28 tail panel? The tail panel is an artistic representation of the F.28 vertical tail, rather than a technical drawing. It represents the tail's overall shape, appearance, and primary structures.
2. If the airline didn't have both its name and marketing image on it's fleet tails, isn't this design inaccurate? Great question! Many airlines didn't brand their aircraft tails, or used only specific colors or stripes on their tails. This design was created to bring together the unique look of the specific aircraft's tail with the markings of the airline that operated it... but knowing that the actual aircraft may have been decorated differently back in the day.
3. If I buy one of this tail design, and one of your tail designs for another aircraft, will the two tail panels be to scale when compared to each other? Thanks for raising this! The tail panels were designed to be relatively sized against each other (meaning a 737 tail panel will be taller than an F.28 tail panel), but are not scaled precisely to the actual aircraft dimensions.
4. What if I don't find a design for a particular airline I'm interested? Send us a note to tell us what you'd like to have, and we'll look into it for you!