Not every livery is meant to be on every jet. Sometimes an airline wants one aircraft to look a little, uh, different for a special reason.
For example, SWISS dedicated the first of its 30 Bombardier CS300s to the people of Western Switzerland. This is generally the region where French is spoken in the multilingual Switzerland. So Mathias Forbach, an artist from French-speaking Switzerland, created an intricate livery that is a homage to the nation’s iconic sites, beauty, diversity and values. The special look would be used only on that first CS300, but it was a bit of a stretch in aircraft treatment.
Fortunately, International Aerospace Coatings has two state-of-art graphic departments at its Irvine, California, corporate headquarters and is in the process of completing another graphics division at its Fort Worth, Texas, facility. IAC production manager Kevin Dempsey says, “the first CS300 was a very important milestone for SWISS, and we are proud to have collaborated on this project with them.”
IAC turned Forbach’s design into tiled vinyl decal sections for application. It then numbered each decal panel and supplied SWISS with a reference key drawing for each side. In all, there were over 1,100 feet of printed vinyl, weighing just under 80 pounds. An IAC team visited Geneva to apply the printed decals over the original SWISS livery. It took just 36 hours of work.
IAC does a lot of graphics work for airlines, usually at a more mundane level. This was a special job for a special airline and a special part of Switzerland.
On another front, IAC recently opened a 7,500-square-meter widebody painting hangar at Singapore Changi Airport, its first Asian facility.