Home Pix of the Trade Air New Zealand unveils ‘all black’ aircraft

Air New Zealand unveils ‘all black’ aircraftAir New Zealand has revealed the world’s largest commercially operated aircraft to be painted completely black. World Champion All Blacks rugby players Kieran Read and Andy Ellis (pictured above) ceremonially led the one-of-a-kind Boeing 777-300ER aircraft out of Boeing’s paint hangar facility in Seattle on Dec. 16, highlighting Air New Zealand’s long-time sponsorship of the recently crowned World Champion All Blacks rugby team. According to Boeing, painting the aircraft took just over a week, two days longer than it normally takes to paint a 777 aircraft. Seven hundred litres of chrome-free primer and paint was used and involved a total of 14 painters working in shifts 24 hours a day. Prepping and painting the aircraft entirely black took one and a half days, followed by a further five days for the intricate detail of the silver fern overlaid on it and the Koru symbol. The remaining time was spent on the finishing touches. Contrary to popular belief, the black paint won’t cause the aircraft to heat up a great deal. The aircraft is expected to be delivered to Air New Zealand in late January following the completion of its interior fit out. By mid 2012, Air New Zealand will have six aircraft featuring the all black livery, including two Airbus A320s and three Beech 1900D turbo-props.