Pan American Boeing 707-121 in 1:24-scale by Tenshodo

General discussion for aircraft display model collectors.

Pan American Boeing 707-121 in 1:24-scale by Tenshodo

Postby Brian Laurance » Thu Sep 19, 2019 4:48 pm


My first-ever flight was aboard a Pan American Boeing 707 from Seattle to Juneau, May, 1964. I was a mere kid, but the experience led to a life-long fascination with commercial aviation.

I followed up my flight with a daily walk to the Pan Am ticket office in downtown Juneau, and spent my summer pining away for the huge 707 display model. I imagined how wonderful it would be to have one of these magnificent models for myself.

The dream never left me, and, over the decades, I acquired various Pan Am 707 models in 1:50, 1:60, and 1:72 scale. But the few truly large scale Pan Am 707's that turned up always surpassed my budget and were typically half-a-world away.

Last spring, I took a break from work, and decided to check out craigslist, searching for a large scale Pan American model. Frankly, I expected little, but paid particular attention to the states that were historic Pan Am gateways. Finally, after checking forty-nine states and finding nothing, I searched on Hawaii craigslist. Bingo. Incredibly, there was a very large scale Pan American 707. The model was in derelict condition, having been kicked around a Honolulu garage, following its use in a 1990's museum exhibit at the Honolulu airport. The exhibit recognized Pan Am's pioneering role in Trans-Pacific aviation.

After a month of wrangling, during which I competed with the Pan American Bar in Manila, Philippines for the model, I prevailed, and the model was shipped to Gary Fields in Portland, Oregon for a budget-minded restoration. After a couple of months, it had been made spectacular yet again.

The model is a 1:24-scale Boeing 707-121, constructed of wood and fiberglass. Built by Tenshodo of Tokyo, Japan, we believe that this was among the very earliest large scale 707 models commissioned by Pan American. Since it depicts the 120 series aircraft, it was likely produced during the late-1950's and utilized around the time of the 707's 1958 introduction to commercial service. Gary indicates that it is not generally known that Tenshodo produced models of this scale, but found that the model is remarkably light-weight for its large size.

My wife and I hoisted the massive 707 into place in my home office a couple of weeks ago, and I anticipate enjoying the model for many years to come.







Last edited by Brian Laurance on Thu Sep 19, 2019 4:58 pm, edited 3 times in total.
Brian Laurance
Posts: 27
Joined: Fri Mar 01, 2013 5:21 pm

Re: Pan American Boeing 707-121 in 1:24-scale by Tenshodo

Postby Brian Laurance » Thu Sep 19, 2019 4:50 pm

Please click on any photo to enlarge.
Brian Laurance
Posts: 27
Joined: Fri Mar 01, 2013 5:21 pm

Return to General Discussion & Newsletter Chat

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests