Thursday, February 18, 2016
Linda Van Hoosen, Communications
An F-104 Starfighter jet is poised to take flight at the Stafford Air & Space Museum in Weatherford, Oklahoma. The new display greets visitors as they approach the main entrance of the museum. The same aircraft was previously on display at the airport entrance near I-40 on Route 66.
To make the project happen, the museum hired Olsson Associates to provide survey, 3D graphic modeling, and structural design for the display. Since the museum had a small budget for the project, Olsson engineers donated most of the design time. Donations also covered construction services, materials, and labor to place the Starfighter jet at its new home. In addition to support structure design for the F-104, Olsson engineers also designed the relocation of a vintage beacon tower to the north of the museum's main entrance.
“We were excited when the museum asked Olsson to help with designing the support structure for the F-104 Starfighter jet,” said Ronald Weltzheimer, Oklahoma City office leader. “General Stafford had a vision of how he would like the plane displayed. He wanted it to be visible and eye catching. It was an honor to bring his vision to life and design a display that shows off the plane on an angle the general remembered flying the F-104 Starfighter many times.”
Olsson engineers looked at several different views of the jet before deciding on its final placement. The aircraft’s nose points skyward and is angled to the north with wings facing south as if in an upward turn. The beacon tower was partially disassembled, repainted, and reassembled in its final location supported by a new foundation system.