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ClassicLover
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Visiting the Qantas Founders Outback Museum in Longreach Australia

Thu Sep 14, 2017 7:18 am

Please feel free to click here to see all the photos that go with this report.

There is quite a good museum about Qantas in Australia called the Qantas Founders Outback Museum. The best part about it is the fact that Qantas donated one of their Boeing 747-200B aircraft to the museum and it was flown in back in 2002. Later on in the decade, the very first Qantas Boeing 707-138 was purchased, restored to flight worthy condition and flown to the museum, arriving in 2007.

Other aircraft are on site as well and that plus the whole museum makes the whole place well worth visiting. So, if you're an avgeek and you find yourself in Australia, you might want to go along and check it out.

Several ticket types are available. You would be mad to travel all the way to Longreach and not do the Platinum Tour. This is the most expensive tour available but you get to do everything.

Priced at $160.00 per person, the price seems pretty steep until you see what is included. You get a private 3 hour tour of the aircraft with your ticket, including walking on the wing of the 707 and 747. Your tour group is restricted to a maximum of 6 people which makes it really personal. You meet at 8am under the nose of the Qantas Boeing 747-238B.

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Everyone was already there when we arrived so our guide greeted us and gave us a little briefing. From there it is through the gate and straight into the tour.

Since you’re already there, the first thing you do is get an explanation of the external bits and pieces of the jumbo. Did you know the example on display here was delivered to Qantas in December 1979? It is also the only Rolls-Royce powered airframe preserved.

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Many of the external features are explained such as the various aerials, pitot tubes and more. You then visit the rear cargo hold and then get to stick your head in the tail to see the rear pressure bulkhead. It’s pretty good!

A running commentary is provided the whole time by the guide. Questions are also welcome and he always has the answers, thank goodness. Next you go up into the cabin, entering through door 5R.

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The tour guide then takes you through the various features of the interior and you end up in the nose. Panels in the roof and flooring has been removed at various points so you can see and be told about the inner workings of the aircraft.

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Qantas Founders Museum Platinum Tour guests visit the cockpit of the aeroplane. Up here you can see all the various gauges, circuit breakers and controls from a bygone era. Once explanations are complete, you get to sit in the Captain’s or First Officer’s seat and have your picture taken. Luckily the Platinum Tour includes one free photo print as part of your ticket.

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Move over, Barnstormers! There’s a new wing walk in town. Perhaps one of the coolest parts of visiting the Qantas Founders Museum is to walk on the wing of the 747. Health and safety has overrun Australia and here is no exception.

It’s into a harness and then out onto the wing where you’re clipped onto a safety line.The view from outside on the wing is really quite cool and you see the aircraft from an angle most people don’t get to see. It is great!

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After this, you head out to the Boeing 707 and you head straight inside when you visit.

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After its passenger career, the aircraft became a private jet which is obvious from the photos. There are some colour pictures of the original interior shot in 1960 so you can see how it was back in the day.

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Once again you can go out on the wing, this time through one of the overwing emergency exits. It is the same deal as before, harness, non-slip pads on the wing and a safety line.

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While you are unable to access the cockpit of the 707, you can take photos. The tour also opens up various other parts of the 707 interior that are usually off limits, yet another reason to book the Platinum package.

Since the tour starts at 8am and runs for 3 hours, it is time for brunch once it is over. A $9.95 meal voucher is included with the tour which is very good. Breakfast runs through to 11:30am and costs more than the $9.95 voucher included with your ticket (but not much more).

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The food is quite alright and later in the day there are other options such as sandwiches and other hot meals. Once done, it’s time to visit the museum proper.

One of two replica Avro 504K aircraft is in the main hall of the museum. These were built to the original specifications by Qantas volunteers many years ago. The other is in the Qantas Domestic Terminal in Sydney. You can fly a flight simulator, there are uniforms, various interesting video presentations and lots of other things to see.

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You should expect to spend a couple of hours here. Outside, there is a Catalina which has a whole motion and audio show inside so it is like flying on it. Unexpected and very good. Further on there is the Hangar which contains full size replica aircraft and lots of other displays. There's also a DC-3 on site in the 1940s Qantas livery.

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I loved the museum and am absolutely delighted I got to visit after wanting to go for so long. It was everything I expected and much more. It is a 2 hour flight from Brisbane to Longreach which is the most convenient way to get there.

Due to the flight schedule, you will need to stay in a hotel. My advice is to go, whether you’re a big aviation enthusiast or not, there is something for everyone. My Dad loved it and he’s not into aviation like I am.

Thank you for reading and if you have any comments or questions, please let me know. Remember, there are loads more pictures at the link for those who are interested.
I do enjoy a spot of flying, especially when it's not in economy!
 
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VapourTrails
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Re: Visiting the Qantas Founders Outback Museum in Longreach Australia

Fri Sep 15, 2017 3:44 am

ClassicLover wrote:
There is quite a good museum about Qantas in Australia called the Qantas Founders Outback Museum. The best part about it is the fact that Qantas donated one of their Boeing 747-200B aircraft to the museum and it was flown in back in 2002. Later on in the decade, the very first Qantas Boeing 707-138 was purchased, restored to flight worthy condition and flown to the museum, arriving in 2007.

Other aircraft are on site as well and that plus the whole museum makes the whole place well worth visiting. So, if you're an avgeek and you find yourself in Australia, you might want to go along and check it out.


Ah, I still haven't been! You've reminded me that I must try and get there before too long. Thanks for showing us a close up account and with narrative of what to expect from an avgeek point of view. Of the people I know who have been - non avgeek, their detail was a bit brief!

Thanks. :wave:
Time now to spread your wings, to take to flight, the life endeavour - Savage Garden
 
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Ryan h
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Re: Visiting the Qantas Founders Outback Museum in Longreach Australia

Fri Sep 15, 2017 11:06 pm

Great report and photos.
South Australian Spotter www.ryanhothersall.net
 
ba319-131
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Re: Visiting the Qantas Founders Outback Museum in Longreach Australia

Sat Sep 16, 2017 6:58 pm

Nice, need to try and figure it out how to do this at some stage.
111,732,3,4,5,7,8,BBJ,741,742,743,744,752,762,763,764,772,77L,773,77W,L15,D10,30,40,AB3,AB6,A312.313,319,320,321,332,333
 
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CollegeAviator
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Re: Visiting the Qantas Founders Outback Museum in Longreach Australia

Tue Sep 19, 2017 5:18 pm

Awesome stuff!
Reminds me of my time in JNB - the Rand Airport park. What better way to spend the day under the belly of a B747?!
 
KLDC10
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Re: Visiting the Qantas Founders Outback Museum in Longreach Australia

Tue Sep 19, 2017 11:30 pm

$160AUD is about $130USD. In Euros that works out at 107, and GBP is 95. Just in case anyone was trying to run the math ;)
If I were to travel all the way to Australia, I probably would be willing to shell out the money for a tour, because it would probably be a once in a lifetime thing. That said, if I lived in Australia, I'm not sure that the $160 would be justified. It looks like a fun tour, but I can't see anything that quite justifies the cost. That's just my opinion of course, and the museum looks great in general.
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dredgy
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Re: Visiting the Qantas Founders Outback Museum in Longreach Australia

Wed Sep 20, 2017 2:08 pm

KLDC10 wrote:
If I were to travel all the way to Australia, I probably would be willing to shell out the money for a tour, because it would probably be a once in a lifetime thing...


Getting to Longreach will likely cost you more than a flight from the US to Australia :P It's not an easy to reach destination. My friend used to live there and I only visited him twice and that was to help him move. He asked me to fly out once, I looked a the cost of the airfare and saved my money by promptly flying to Japan instead. Longreach is just as much of a once in a lifetime experience for most Australians :p
 
KLDC10
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Re: Visiting the Qantas Founders Outback Museum in Longreach Australia

Wed Sep 20, 2017 3:27 pm

dredgy wrote:
Getting to Longreach will likely cost you more than a flight from the US to Australia :P It's not an easy to reach destination. My friend used to live there and I only visited him twice and that was to help him move. He asked me to fly out once, I looked a the cost of the airfare and saved my money by promptly flying to Japan instead. Longreach is just as much of a once in a lifetime experience for most Australians :p


I'm not that familiar with the location of places in Australia, but after reading your post I looked up the distance from Brisbane to Longreach. Wow! You're right, that would be a once-in-a-lifetime thing for most people, regardless of nationality. In which case I'd perhaps overlook the cost of the tour ;)
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ClassicLover
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Re: Visiting the Qantas Founders Outback Museum in Longreach Australia

Sun Oct 01, 2017 11:56 am

VapourTrails wrote:
Ah, I still haven't been! You've reminded me that I must try and get there before too long. Thanks for showing us a close up account and with narrative of what to expect from an avgeek point of view. Of the people I know who have been - non avgeek, their detail was a bit brief!

Thanks. :wave:


Yeah, non av-geeks don't really have much of an idea about what to tell us to make us want to go. Glad you liked the report and hope you get out there soon!

Ryan h wrote:
Great report and photos.


Cheers, thanks very much!

ba319-131 wrote:
Nice, need to try and figure it out how to do this at some stage.


I think it's a must if you're ever heading down to Australia. Hopefully you'll get to go!

CollegeAviator wrote:
Awesome stuff!
Reminds me of my time in JNB - the Rand Airport park. What better way to spend the day under the belly of a B747?!


I'd like to go there too sometime. I like aviation museums, it's always good to visit them!

KLDC10 wrote:
$160AUD is about $130USD. In Euros that works out at 107, and GBP is 95. Just in case anyone was trying to run the math ;)
If I were to travel all the way to Australia, I probably would be willing to shell out the money for a tour, because it would probably be a once in a lifetime thing. That said, if I lived in Australia, I'm not sure that the $160 would be justified. It looks like a fun tour, but I can't see anything that quite justifies the cost. That's just my opinion of course, and the museum looks great in general.


Well, I chose not to put all my pictures into the report. It wouldn't be fair to the museum or to future visitors to show exactly everything, otherwise why go? I think the Platinum Tour price is okay. It is limited to 6 people per day so I'd say many people do the cheaper Jet Tours rather than the whole thing. Hopefully you'll get to go there sometime! :)
I do enjoy a spot of flying, especially when it's not in economy!

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