Duncan Aviation’s team in Battle Creek, Michigan, recently transformed the interior of a Challenger 604. Other work performed on the aircraft included a 12-month inspection, paint work, avionics upgrades, and provisioning for an aero-med air stretcher unit.
Based out of Australia and with limited resources for this type of project, the first-time jet owner was looking to transform his well-used aircraft to something contemporary that centred around current trends. Duncan Aviation’s lead designer Emily Krawczak pulled together a colour scheme of blacks, greys and silvers for the interior.
“Because the owner was represented by a management team, they brought this pre-owned, USA-based aircraft to us knowing it would eventually be registered overseas,” said Adam Bruce, completions/modifications sales representative. “It was in desperate need of a refurbishment, and the owner requested a contemporary interior that also allowed for comfort on long flights.”
When it landed at Duncan Aviation, the aircraft’s colours were browns, golds and beiges. At delivery, the interior featured blacks, greys and silvers. “It went from 100% mild to eye-catching wild,” said Bruce.
The owner and his wife had a general idea of how they wanted the interior to feel and worked closely with Krawczak to bring their vision to life.
“He liked darker colours, while his wife wanted the aircraft to be light and bright,” said Krawzcak. “I think we struck a great balance between the two visions. He also was very interested in a highly customised chair design.”
The Duncan Aviation interior team touched all aspects of the interior except for the cabinet interior laminate. The project was highlighted by a full hydrographics package for all of the woodwork, customised seat upholstery, laminated upper galley accents, new soft goods, and new plating.
The aircraft was also provisioned for an aero-med air stretcher unit with an air-stair lift mechanism, removable left-hand forward bulkhead to accommodate the stretcher installation, and custom floor covering for medical missions.
“All of those items are able to be removed to convert the aircraft for special missions, as well as standard use,” said Bruce. “It’s basically a plane ambulance. Medical services in Australia sometimes require travel to access and this aircraft is now capable of safely transporting patients over long distances.”
The owner had seen a model of another aircraft with a similar paint scheme and fell in love with the colours. The challenge was to find aircraft paint that matched, so the Duncan Aviation team had its paint vendor do a custom match.
“After that, it was a matter of finding the right colour combination,” said Krawzcak. “He was very involved in the process, and in the end, we produced an original and striking paint scheme that looks fast.”
The aircraft exterior was painted in a platinum pearl base and included a stone pearl nose that fades into diagonal stripes along the body, creating an ombre effect. The stripes carry onto the engines, providing balance to the scheme. Pops of gold on the body and winglets add interest and colour.
With only seeing renderings of what the paint and interior would look like, there is always a sense of nervousness of what the final product will look like. “The owner only had positive things to say about seeing his aircraft paint in person,” said Krawczak.
The aircraft also received avionics upgrades for new lighting, while new USB inputs were installed and obsolete monitors were replaced with a charging hub for personal devices inside the aft divan cabinet. The team also created a new audio interface unit and installed a Gogo Airshow Mobile 2 unit.
The work also included a 12-month inspection, ice protection service bulletin, landing/taxi LED lights, and an export certificate of airworthiness.