All posts tagged: boeing
737-100 all white side view

There is no greater feeling in life than committing to draw every single variant of the Boeing 737 and then actually completing it. Well, that’s a slight exaggeration (lol) but I’ve got to tell you that I’m feeling a huge sense of satisfaction right now as I just put the finishing touches on these 737–100 illustrations not five minutes ago.

That’s not to say that was a totally epic experience or anything. The 737 line was without a doubt the most difficult series of aircraft templates that I have created to date, primarily based on the sheer number of versions there are, each requiring a ton of research to figure out how they differ from every other model.

There were a lot of mistakes made along the way (which I had to go back and correct) and once again I thank YOU – my astute readers who pointed out things that I missed or illustrated incorrectly! Without your help, these illustrations wouldn’t be as nearly as accurate as they ended up being. Are they perfect? No, not by a long shot. But that’s ok because I will be refining these templates for a long time to come as I discover new things that could use some tweaking. And trust me – when it comes to technical drawings like these, there are always things that could use some tweaking…

737-100 blueprint technical drawing

Wireframe line drawing of a 737-100

The funny thing is that the entire process of drawing these 737–100 illustrations was a lot less exciting than I thought it was going to be. For some reason or another, I had it in my mind that the -100 was significantly more different than the -200. After all, it was the launch version of the 737 line, and I had assumed incorrectly that there were some very significant unique visual attributes to the -100 that didn’t carryover to any other model.

For example, I thought (for sure) that the -100 had an external communications antenna that extended from the vertical stabilizer down to the top center of the fuselage. I could’ve sworn that I’ve seen pictures of that wire on original 737s many times over the years, but when doing the research to create these illustrations, I discovered that it never existed on this model at all. It was actually added to a cargo variant of the -200, and it was never a thing on the -100. Interesting!

Something else I learned during the research process was the fact that the modified engines with the redesigned thrust reversers came very early in the 737-100 production cycle, meaning that the original version (with the shorter engines) didn’t last very long. As a matter of fact, nearly all of those original-engined -100s received this thrust reverser retrofit in a very short amount of time due to how much of an important safety upgrade it was. It was frustrating to not be able to find any good pictures of the very first 737-100s (with the shorter engines) as they rolled off the production line in 1968. The lack of decent reference material makes creating these templates a challenge, so my apologies if I didn’t get it looking 100% correct.

737-100 retrofitted thrust reversers side view

All white 737-100 featuring engines with retrofitted thrust reversers

retrofitted thrust reversers 737-100 technical drawing

And here’s the associated line drawing version of the model with retrofitted thrust reversers

As a bonus, I thought it would be fun to create some versions of this original 737 in bare aluminum. This was an aircraft designed and built in the 1960s after all, so it seems only right to include the unpainted versions that expose all of that beautiful retro sheet metal!

Bare aluminum Boeing 737-100 side view

Bare aluminum Boeing 737-100 side view with the original engines

Bare aluminum Boeing 737-100 retrofit side view

And here’s the bare aluminum version featuring engines with retrofitted thrust reversers

purchase the side view boeing 737-100 template source files in fully editable vector and psd format

So there you have it! The entire 737 line of illustrations is now complete, and even though it feels great to have it done, I’m even more excited about the fact that I can now move on to other aircraft types. Keep in mind that I’m still planning on doing the cargo versions of some of these early 737s (with gravel kits too), but I won’t be making separate posts about those. I’ll simply add them to the existing posts that I have already written, just so it doesn’t slow me down and I can focus more on illustrating instead of writing.

And now, probably the most exciting question of this post: what aircraft am I going to illustrate next? That’s a very good question actually! I had been thinking that I was going to do the A321neo LR, but I was doing some research yesterday and ultimately I couldn’t figure out what the the visual differences are over a standard A321neo. If anyone reading this knows for sure, please leave a comment below – because if there aren’t any visual differences, it may not be worth doing the template at all. Other than that, I have been receiving a ton of requests for the Avro RJ85 lately, so maybe I’ll do that instead…

737-200ADV side view high resolution

Remember when I posted my 727 template a few months ago and I explained how nostalgic it made me feel the entire time I was drawing it? Those same exact feelings came roaring back as I was scouring the internet searching for 737-200 reference material, and I kept finding myself getting sidetracked by looking at endless amounts of grainy pictures and videos of these old birds.

This original version of the 737 was a big part of my youth, and they left a lasting impression on me when I was still a young boy and becoming interested in airliners way back in the 1980s. My home airport at that time was FNT (Flint, MI), and it wasn’t uncommon to see Piedmont 737-200s fly over our house on approach into the airport. It was even more fun when they took off right overhead – because there’s nothing much louder than an old 737, and it was a total rush to feel the house shaking from the power of those obnoxiously loud JT8D’s.

Unfortunately, there was only one (maybe two) Piedmont 737 flights a day into FNT in the mid 1980s, so those flyovers didn’t happen quite as often as I would have liked. I am sure that mom and dad were perfectly ok with the low frequency of air traffic in the area, but I would’ve been beyond excited if it was the busiest airport in the world and there was a steady stream of incoming and departing aircraft – 24 hours a day. The louder the better!

So this is it. The final version of the 737 in my entire series of templates for this family! I’ve already illustrated and uploaded templates for the MAX series (-7 MAX, -8 MAX, and -9 MAX), the Next Generation series (-600, -700, -800, and -900), as well as the Classic series (-300, -400, and -500). This -200 is my first in the last and final series of the 737, which is officially referred to as the “Original” series. It’s confusing, isn’t it? Yeah, but don’t worry – once I post the -100 templates, I’m going to do a round-up post which outlines all the visual differences between every version of the 737. That’s gonna be a good post, so keep watching for that because it’s coming very soon!

737-200ADV detailed tech drawing

Wireframe line drawing of the 737-200ADV (Advanced)

purchase the detailed boeing 737-200 template source files in fully editable vector and psd format

Even though I’m going to getting into the visual differences in a future post, it’s probably only appropriate to tell you how the Original version differs from the 737-300 template that posted yesterday. Remember: the 737-300 is part of the Classic series, so there are quite a few differences between this -200 and that one.

Come to think of it, the easiest way to explain it is to tell you that the only thing the -200 shares with the -300 is the fuselage. Pretty much every other component is different! The wings on the Original series are shorter, the vertical stabilizer is completely different, the horizontal stabilizer is shorter, the landing gear is completely different (which makes the entire aircraft sit lower to the ground), and the engines are JT8D’s as opposed to the CFM56’s. It’s the engines that make up most of the visual difference however – at first glance, everything else seems to be the same, and most casual observers probably wouldn’t even notice a difference. I sure didn’t – as a matter fact, I always thought that the wings were exactly the same between the Original and Classic series. I was very wrong!

Another thing that I would like to point out is that the 737-200 in this post is an “Advanced” model. In a nutshell, this is a higher performance version of the standard 737–200 featuring a re-designed thrust reverser system which elongated the engines by 48 whopping inches. The engines themselves were higher performance variants, which changed the shape of the inlet of the cowlings the front of the engine (slightly). The re-shaped inlet is a bit difficult to see in the side view like this, but the thrust reverser extension is very apparent and gives the -200 a very unique look. I can only imagine how futuristic it must’ve looked in 1968 when it was first implemented. Like far out dude.

Those of you out there who are hoping to get templates for a standard 737-200 need not worry. Since there are many similarities between that one and the -100, I’m going to go ahead and do the -100 first and then swing back around and do the original -200 after that. Please note that I’m not going to make a separate post for that one, but I will be updating this post with those illustrations just to keep things neat and organized.

We’re getting really close to the completion of the 737 family now!

Boeing 737-300 all white blank

It’s only taken me six years to get to this point, but finally – here is the template for the world’s most popular commercial aircraft! Before I in advertently dig a hole too deep to get myself out of, I fully admit that I’m not totally positive that the 737–300 is the world’s most popular airliner or not. I do know that it was the most popular 737 ever built (with 1113 sold), and combined with the fact that the entire 737 family is the most successful commercial airliner type in history (in terms of sales), I’m just making a broad and best-guess assumption that the 737–300 is the king of the hill. Even if I’m totally wrong, you have to give me credit for making a solid guess, right? 🙂

And before all of you Boeing historians out there start pecking away at your keyboards to inform me that it was actually the 737-200 which was the most popular with 1114 total sales, there were several different sub-variants of that one (cargo/combi) that helped to make up that overall number. Since the 737-300 didn’t have any sub-variants, I’m counting full-passenger versions only. In that case, the 737-200 only sold 991 times, versus the 1113 of the 737-300.

737-300 side view blueprint

Wireframe line drawing of a 737-300

I’ve received more requests for side view 737–300 templates more than any other aircraft since I started doing this way back in 2012, and I know that there are a lot of you out there who have been patiently waiting for these illustrations (for what seemed like an eternity for sure). That’s why it felt really good to put the finishing touches on them this morning and call ’em “done”, and I was half tempted to crack open a beer and light a cigarette even though I don’t drink or smoke.

Because I’ve been working so hard on the entire 737 family for several weeks now, there wasn’t much about the -300 which surprised me as I was illustrating it. It’s essentially just a shortened version of the -400, and a slightly longer version of the -500. There’s nothing special or unique about the design of this one that I haven’t already talked about in my posts for the -400 and -500, so it was a rather simple template to create all things considered.

The only thing that I learned from doing this illustration (which really surprised me) was the fact that blended winglets were developed for this model, which ended up becoming a very popular add-on. At first I thought it was a mistake when I discovered that little juicy little tidbit of info, but a quick search of revealed that there were quite a handful of 737’s out there that wore blended winglets at some point. No 737-300s rolled off the assembly line with winglets – it was solely an aftermarket option, but ended up being very popular due to how much it increased fuel efficiency on longer routes. BTW, 737-300s fitted with winglets were dubbed “Special Performance” models.

737-300SP winglets side view

Here’s the all white 737-300SP, which is the Special Performance version featuring blended winglets

737-300SP blueprint

And here’s the wireframe line drawing of the 737-300SP

purchase the boeing 737-300 template source files in vector and psd format

Anyway, now that I’m getting down to the end of the 737 line, I’m starting to understand firsthand how complex and massively huge this family of aircraft is. When I first committed to illustrating every single version of the 737 several weeks ago, I wasn’t expecting it to be such a heartburn-inducing chore. The naïve side of me was thinking that 737s were generally the same from generation to generation, with small visual tweaks here and there that were (for the most part) difficult notice with the naked eye. But now that I’ve got everything from the 737–300 all the way up to the 737–9 Max illustrated, I can really appreciate how much this aircraft has evolved over the years and it’s definitely not the same airplane today that it was when it first rolled out of the factory way back in 1969.

The good news is that at the time of this writing, I am darn near close to having the -200 fully illustrated and ready to post here to I fully expected to have it completed by now, but it turns out that the original version of the 737 was massively different from the Classic series and there were a lot of changes required which has unexpectedly eaten up a lot of my time this week. Anyway, I’ll get into that gory info in tomorrow’s post, but for now, I hope you enjoy the 737-300 that you’ve been been patiently waiting so long for!

737-400 all white side view

Thanks for all of your support (and patience) while I continue on this excruciating journey of creating templates for the entire 737 family of aircraft! “Excruciating” is probably too light of a word considering all of the blood sweat and tears that I’ve put into this little project over the past few weeks or so, but I will admit that most of the struggle has been my own fault due to not paying attention to the little (but oh-so significant) details.

Making mistakes on one template has never been that big of a deal, because it normally doesn’t take very long to go back in and fix whatever it is that’s wrong and to regenerate updated illustrations for this blog and my online store.

The problem with my 737 family of templates is the fact that I’ve done nine of them now (including this 737–400), and every time that I realize that I made a little mistake (it happens more often than I care to admit), I have to go back in and fix every single one of them. Making matters worse is the fact that most versions of the 737 have multiple sub-variants (winglets vs no winglets) and that just amplifies the pain and frustration. It’s a very time consuming and mind-numbing process to modify and then to regenerate final illustrations for every template, and now that I’m getting down to the final few 737 versions, it’s a really big (and soul-crushing) deal to discover a mistake and then have to go back and update everything.

Long story short, I guess what I’m trying to say is that this 737 series of illustrations has my my most frustrating series so far. However, I will admit that I feel immensely satisfied with what I have been able to produce over the past few weeks, and I’m very excited to be getting close to the end. There’s only three more to go after this one!

737-400 technical blueprint

Wireframe line drawing of a 737-400

buy boeing 737-400 source file airliner template in vector and psd format

Although the 737-400 was nowhere near being the most popular version of the 737 ever (that honor goes to the 737-800), it’s still the variant that I think of first when somebody says “737” to me. I’m pretty sure that I have Alaska Airlines to thank for that, because the -400 was the main type of aircraft they flew to my home airport of SAN (and nearby SNA) back in early 2000’s. For some reason another, all those -400s with that friendly Eskimo on the tail have been etched into my brain and it’s the 737 I think of the most when I think of the 737. Weird, I know.

486 737-400s were produced between years of 1988 and 2000, which is 97 more than the 737–500. The 737–300 (which I will post a template for next week) was the king of the 737 Classic series with 1113 total sales. If you’re curious, it was the 737-100 which was the major 737 variant with the fewest sales. Only 30 buyers lined up for that one, which is odd considering that the 737 went on to be the most popular jet airliner of all time.

Finally, I would like to apologize for the fact that I don’t yet have an illustration of the 737-400F for you like I promised yesterday. Remember at the top of this post where I was explaining how it takes a lot of time to go back in and fix mistakes that I inevitably make with each illustration? It turns out that the engine cowling that I illustrated for the -500 (which carries over to all 737 Classic variants) was all wrong and I had to go back and fix it this morning. So – the time that it took to fix that goof took away from the time that I was planning to use for creating the freighter version of the 737-400. No worries though, because I’m still planning on producing it and I hope to get it posted next week along with the 737-300.

I’d like to try to get the -200 posted next week as well, but no promises on that one because it’s going to take some time to draw those JT8D engines and get them strapped to the wing. Obtaining decent reference material for those really old aircraft isn’t easy, as I recently discovered with the template creation process of my Douglas DC-8. Cameras weren’t very good back then, so I hope that I’ll be able to find some decent photos which aren’t so grainy that I can’t see any of the details. But do you know me – I like a challenge, and I’m really looking forward to illustrating those old birds!

737-500 white side view

I actually had to do a double take as I was uploading the images for this blog post, because I thought for sure that I had made a mistake and that I accidentally grabbed my 737-600 illustrations instead. At first glance, the 737-500 and -600 look nearly identical – so it was a very easy mistake to make and I don’t feel too ashamed about admitting that I wasn’t able to tell the difference. There are actually some fairly significant differences between the two that took a little bit of extra time to illustrate, and those differences are really difficult to see if you don’t know what to look for. Once I took a moment to compare the two side-by-side, it was clear to see which was which and a wave of relief washed over me (confirming that I had uploaded the correct images and that I was still the nerdy and knowledgeable AvGeek I had been aspiring to be).

737-500 blueprint no winglets

Wireframe line drawing of a 737-500 without winglets

As I mentioned in my last post, the 737-500 is part of the “Classic” series of the 737 family (along with the -300 and -400), while the -600 is part of the “Next Generation” camp (along with the -700, -800, and -900). The most significant visual differences between the Classic and Next Generation series are different wings and vertical stabilizers, and you have to look really close to notice those differences at all. The wing is much smaller on the Classic series, while the vertical stabilizer is somewhat shorter – although it maintains roughly the same shape. The engines (CFM56-3B’s) are also completely different, and are smaller than later versions (which had CFM56-7’s). As I said, it’s really hard to notice these differences without comparing the two side-by-side, so go ahead and download both and place them over top of each other – then you’ll be able to see very clearly how different they are.

The other major difference between the -500 and -600 is the fact that the -500 was available with blended winglets (similar in design to the winglets available on the Next Generation series). I actually had no idea that they were an option on this version, and I find it odd that they weren’t available on the -600 at all. I had always assumed that winglets didn’t become available until much later in the 737 timeline, so once again I learned something new as I was digging around and doing my research. This side view airliner template thing is becoming one of the most educational projects of my entire life!

737-500 blended winglets side view

Side profile illustration of an all white Boeing 737-500 with blended winglets

737-500 with blended winglets blueprint

Wireframe line drawing of a 737-500 with blended winglets

buy boeing 737-500 source file airliner template

Oh – a few more interesting bits of technical data for those who are curious: the 737-500 was the direct replacement for the -200, and is roughly 19 inches longer than that first generation aircraft. It’s also 8 inches shorter than the 737-600 which replaced it. Neat, huh?

Launched in 1987 with Southwest Airlines, the 737-500 flew for the first time in 1989, and was launched into service in 1990. 389 airframes were built between the years of 1990 and 1999, which is a pretty respectable number – enough so that it was easy to spot in airports all over the world. I remember seeing a ton of them here in San Diego with Southwest, and it was a real bummer when they retired their last one in 2016. A quick check of my flight log reveals that I’ve flown on 6 of them over the years (2 of them with Southwest and 4 on United Shuttle), which is actually more than I recall. Geez, now I’m totally regretting not getting a ride on one of the last ones before right they were retired…

As I promised last week, my goal for this week was to post templates for both the 737-500 and the 737-400. The good news is that I am still on track to make good on my word, with the -400 illustrations coming tomorrow. Note that I will also be including the -400F (freighter) version along with it, which is one that I know a handful of you have been asking for. Make sure to check back 24 hours from now!

boeing 737-600 side view all white no livery

Now we’re getting to the good stuff! This post about the Boeing 737-600 marks the beginning of what will be a series of posts over the next few weeks featuring every model of the 737 family that I have not yet illustrated (all the way down to the first generation -100). Those of you who have been following me for a very long time know that I’ve been promising blank illustration templates for the entire 737 family for weeks (months perhaps?) and I couldn’t be happier to announce that I’m now ready to start posting them here to the blog and my online store.

Why did it take so long to get to this point? Well, the 737–800 was one of my very first templates that I ever created back in 2012 or so and it wasn’t anywhere near up to the level of quality that my templates are at today. That meant that my -700 and -900 versions (based off of that poorly drawn -800) had inherited the same quality control problems and all of my 737 illustrations were a total mess. In order to create very high-quality templates of the entire 737 family, I needed to start with a base illustration (the -800) that was as accurate and clean as possible. I had to start over from scratch, and that’s what I’ve been working on in solitude over the past two weeks. It was a ton of work, but it was totally worth it because those new illustrations are incredibly accurate and some of the best that I’ve ever done.

Those of you who have purchased 737 illustrations off of my online store over the past few years probably noticed a series of email notifications last weekend which alerted you to the new versions that are now available. I hope that you were all able to take advantage of the free upgrade, because all of those illustrations are brand new (rebuilt from the ground up) and much more accurate than the versions they replaced.

Keep in mind that at the time of this writing, I have not yet updated my existing 737 templates here on the blog. Only my online store has the new versions at this moment, but don’t worry – over the next few weeks I’ll be sure to update those old posts with all new templates. Pretty exciting stuff if you are a huge 737 fan like me!

Now that I’ve taken the time to explain why I’m such a slow poke, it’s time to talk about the 737-600 itself (the subject of this post). It’s an odd looking airplane, no doubt, but put it side-by-side with an Airbus A318 and it doesn’t look all that awkward. “Cute” is probably a better way to describe the proportions of this stubby little bird.

737-600 line drawing blueprint

Wireframe line drawing of a 737-600

buy boeing 737-600 source file airliner template

For those of you who don’t already know, the Boeing 737-600 is the successor to the 737-500, and is a part of the “Next Generation” 737 series which also includes the -700, -800, and -900. Note that the MAX series (737-7, 737-8, 737-9, and 737-10) is a completely different group and not included as part of the Next Generation series. Don’t worry – it’s not easy to keep track of all the variants of the 737 unless you’re a total AvGeek, but the Wikipedia page has it all broken down in an easy to digest format and it’s a good place to go if you’re looking for a detailed history of the entire line.

As of September 2018, there have only been 69 Boeing 737-600’s built and delivered since it’s introduction in 1998, and to be totally honest, that’s about 30 more than I expected. I’ve always considered these things to be super rare unicorns – much like how the 767-400 was built (in very low numbers) specifically for Delta and Continental back in the early 2000’s. As a matter fact, I don’t even recall ever seeing a 737-600 in real life at any time in my past – even though WestJet occasionally sends those little guys here to my home airport in San Diego every now and then to complement the regularly scheduled -700s and -800s. They aren’t easy to find!

As I said at the beginning of this post, I will be posting the rest of the 737 lineup in succession (working backwards) very soon. My goal for next week is to post templates for both the -500 and -400, so keep your mouse button finger well-rested and ready to do some clicking!

737 MAX 9 all white side view

I know that there are many of you out there who have been wondering why the hell it is taken me so long to create a template of the 737 MAX 9. After all, I’ve already done the MAX 7 and 8, so it seems logical that a simple stretch my existing templates wouldn’t seem like such a big deal, right? In theory, that is correct. There isn’t anything significantly different about the max 9 over the max 8 other than fuselage length (and a few other minor details), so what was the problem?

In order to answer that, I need to take you back to 2012 when I first started creating side view airliner templates. Back then, I really had no idea what I was doing, and I was just trying to figure out how to draw airplanes. The very first template I created was the McDonnell Douglas DC-10–30, and I followed that up quickly with the Boeing 737–800. I was a bit disorganized still, as I was so excited to draw those airplanes that I wasn’t really thinking about how to develop a process for creating these templates. Basically, that’s just a long-winded way of saying that my first templates were a bit rough and there were some unfortunate discrepancies between my line drawings and the fully rendered all white versions.

To make matters worse, I’ve based every single one of my 737 templates on that original 737–800 illustration. That means that all of those inconsistencies have been growing as I continued to build up my entire 737 series, and it has been bothering me quite a bit. You should all know by now that I am a total perfectionist, so before I could go and create new variants of the 737 (everything from the classics to the latest versions), I really needed to go back and redo my base 737 template from scratch. That’s what I’ve been working on in my spare time for the past few months.

737 MAX 9 line drawing blueprint

Technical side profile line drawing of a Boeing 737-9 MAX

buy source file 737 MAX 9 airliner template

You probably didn’t even notice, but I have recently updated my posts about the MAX 7 and 8 with all new illustrations. And now that those have been updated, it allows me to post these templates of the MAX 9 without worrying that it would be inconsistent with them.

This also means that I will be updating all of my other 737 template posts with updated illustrations (yay!). I don’t have an exact time frame for that, but I’m planning to have everything updated over the next few weeks. My best suggestion is to check back a month from now, and I can pretty much guarantee that all my 737 templates will be updated by then and you’ll know that you’ll have the latest and greatest versions. Those of you who have purchased the high-resolution source files on my online store will also have access to the new versions. You’ll get an automated email notifying you of the update as soon as it happens.

Additionally, this also means that I am now able to start working on some of the 737 classics. I’ve been holding off doing those for a very long time now because of how much work needed to go into fixing my base 737 template, but now I’m free to forge a head with those and eventually I’m going to have the entire 737 family of aircraft templated and posted here to the blog. I’m looking forward to that as much as you are!

boeing 757-200 tools royce engines side view

Sorry for the lack of an exciting update today, but I really needed to get my Boeing 757–200 template updated with Rolls Royce engines as soon as possible. You see, I create illustrations of all the aircraft that I fly on for my travel blog, and several weeks ago I flew on a American Airlines 757–200 from Phoenix to San Diego (a really great flight by the way). As you are probably aware, American Airlines 757s are all Rolls Royce powered (and I only had the Pratt & Whitney version illustrated), so this had to be done in order for me to keep up with my normal posting schedule over there. Sometimes I’m really starting to think that my blogs own me, and not the other way around…

Simply drawing a new engine and applying it to my existing 757 template is not as easy as it sounds. The problem was that I needed to find decent reference material which clearly showed all of the tiny little differences between the two versions of this aircraft. Considering that most of those details are under their wing and in the shadows, it’s never easy to find a single “Holy Grail” pic revealing everything. It usually involves scouring through hundreds of photos and picking out a handful of the best to compare with my existing illustration to figure out what the differences are.

It’s exactly like being six years old again and I’m struggling with one of those stupid books which are showing me two silly pictures and I have to figure out which one has the cat holding a hotdog and which one doesn’t. Well, at least I can say that my education paid off, right?

boeing 757-200 rolls royce engines side view blueprint

Side profile line drawing of a Boeing 757-200 with winglets and Rolls Royce engines

buy source file 757-200 rolls royce engines airliner template

The complexities don’t end there either. In this particular case, I created that original 757 template three years ago, back when I was still learning how to do side view airliner templates and I didn’t necessarily have my technique refined and down pat as I do now. Therefore, as I’m working with those old templates, I start to notice little problems here and there that need fixing before I can proceed with the new engine integration. It always takes time to go back and redo portions of those old illustrations to get them up to snuff with my current level of quality, which is a good thing I guess considering how much of a perfectionist I am. I always want to make sure I’m giving you guys the highest quality that I can when it comes to my original source files.

boeing 757-200 rolls royce engines side view

Here’s the all white version without winglets

boeing 757-200 rolls royce engines side view blueprint

And the line drawing without winglets

By now you are probably asking yourself, “Scott, which version of the 757 do you think looks better? The Pratt & Whitney version, or the Rolls Royce version?” Okay, it’s probably more likely that this particular question never even crossed your mind, but I’m really itching to tell you which one I like the best – because I’m opinionated like that! The winner in my book is the Pratt & Whitney powered version, simply because I think the Rolls Royce engines look too small compared to the overall size of the airframe. What do you think?

For my next template, I’m thinking about doing something from scratch instead of making a small update to one of my existing templates such as I did with this one. I haven’t done any Russian aircraft yet other than the SSJ-100, and I know very little about commercial Russian aircraft in general, so I think that would be a lot of fun. But don’t get your hopes up! I haven’t even started anything yet, and I’ve got a week long vacation coming up soon, so my mind could change by the time I come back and get started again. It’s really anyone’s guess which aircraft is coming next…

White Boeing 727 side view

Before I begin, could you please give me a moment so that I can grab another tissue and wipe the tears of nostalgia from my eyes? It should only take a second or two, and you can pass the time browsing some of the other side view airliner templates in my ever-growing collection. The L-1011 is a neat one – I’d recommend giving that one a good look while I compose myself to write this blog post…


OK, I’m ready now. I don’t know what it is about the 727 that brings on such strong feelings of nostalgia in me, but it does so in a very big way each and every time I see one of these things. My first ever flight was way back in the spring of 1982 on a Republic Airlines Boeing 727 from Detroit to Sarasota, and for an eight-year-old boy just starting to become fascinated with airplanes, it was a life-altering experience that I would never forget.

The funny thing was that one of my classmates was also flying to Florida that same week (it was spring break, and nearly all of Michigan migrates to Florida at that time), but he and his family were lucky to be flying a Northwest DC-10. I was so jealous of that, and I remember feeling disappointed that we were only going to be on a stupid little 727. But once we arrived at the airport and I saw that airplane sitting at the gate ready to take us to Florida, it was stimulation overload and I had the time of my life. It was an amazing flight!

The Boeing 727 is the airplane of my childhood. Just as the 737 is the most common airliner in existence today, the 727 was the workhorse of airline fleets worldwide and they were literally everywhere in the 1980’s. It seems that every single airport (big and small) had 727’s flowing in and out of them like water, and I specifically remember watching these airplanes fly low and slow over our house on approach into DTW. *sniff* I think I’m going to need another tissue…

boeing 727-200 blueprint

Technical side profile line drawing of a Boeing 727-200

buy source file 727-200 airliner template

To this day, I consider the Boeing 727 to be one of the best aircraft designs ever – and that’s not just the nostalgia talking. To think that this thing was designed in the 1960s is just astounding considering that there were no computers back then to help figure out some of the aerodynamic complexities. It still looks as sleek and beautiful today as it did back then, and with slightly bigger engines it could easily pass as a modern-day airliner. The best part to me, by far, is that aggressively swept wing. The wings of the 727 are much more aggressive compared to what we are seeing on modern day aircraft, and it was truly a design way ahead of its time. I had a lot of fun illustrating this one, though I will admit that there were no surprises for me since this is my favorite aircraft, and I pretty much knew everything about it that there is to know (design wise at least – don’t you dare ask me about the technical stuff).

I’ve logged 12 flights on the 727 over the years, with my last one being November 26, 2000 from DEN to SAN on United Airlines. It’s amazing to think that the 727 lasted two more years beyond that at United, with the last one being retired in 2002. Even more amazing is the fact that at the time of this writing, there are still 56 of these aircraft in service today around the world. The 727 has had a really good run, and it will forever hold a place in my heart as the airplane that kicked my fascination with commercial aviation into high gear.

And that’s the end of this blog post, which is a good thing because…well…I’m out of tissues.

747-400F side view

OK, first of all, I just want to apologize in a very big way for the lack of regular uploads lately. I’ve been receiving bunches of emails from concerned readers who are worried that I had given up airliner template creation for good, but I’m here to tell you that I’m still committed to this project and I’m not giving up anytime soon. As sick as it sounds, I actually love digging through the Internet looking for information which helps me create these very detailed aircraft illustrations. It’s sick and twisted I know, but I’m a very technical kind of guy and this is my kind of work.

Now that I’ve got that out of the way, I’d like to present to you the templates I promised in my last post way back in November. I should point out that I’ve actually been working on these illustrations for the entire two months that I’ve been absent from this blog, so it’s not like I’ve been sitting on the beach drinking margaritas and wasting my days away. The problem was that I didn’t have the luxury to dedicate a large chunk of time to getting them done, so I had to work on them 10 minutes at a time, here and there, whenever I could find a spare moment in my day to tinker. But now they’re done and ready for you to download and do whatever it is that you usually do to my templates.

747-400F side view blueprint

Technical side profile line drawing of a Boeing 747-400F over a white background with and without the landing gear deployed

buy source file 747-400F airliner template

The Boeing 747-400F is pretty much the aircraft I think of whenever I hear the term “cargo plane”, and I’m not sure that is ever going to change. It was the dominant freighter during the time that I started getting into commercial aviation back in the 90’s so it’s pretty much burned into my brain at this point. Not only that, my very first trip to Anchorage Alaska way back in 2000 helped quite a bit to solidify the 747-400F as the king (I mean queen) of cargo, as it was amazing to see all of them flying in and out of ANC on their journeys between North America and Asia. And if you were wondering, yes, I couldn’t help but wonder if each and every one of them were carrying pallets of rubber dog shit out of Hong Kong.

For those of you who aren’t aware, there are actually two main versions of the 747-400F: those that came from the factory, and those that were converted by Boeing (Boeing Converted Freighters, or BCF for short). The standard 747-400F Versions were designed from the start to be freighters, featuring a large nose door and a shorter upper deck to save weight. The BCF version is an aircraft which started life hauling passengers, and was then converted by Boeing into a cargo hauler after being retired by the airlines. In this case, the interiors were stripped out, the windows filled with plugs, and a small cargo door was installed in the left rear of the fuselage. Note that the side cargo door was optional on the 747-400F, but the nose door was not on the 747-400BCF.

747-400BCF side view

Side profile illustration of a white Boeing 747-400BCF

747-400BCF blueprint side view

Technical side profile line drawing of a Boeing 747-400BCF

So there you have it. I hope these Boeing 747-400F templates are useful to you, and as always, please feel free to reach out to me and let me know how you are using these illustrations. Not only is it very interesting for me to see what you all are doing with them, but it also helps me to refine my technique and create better templates which suits the needs of the majority of users.

Next up: maybe the Boeing 727! Not necessarily because I want to do it, but mainly because I started one a year ago and it’s been sitting half finished in my archives begging to be finished. No promises though, as I have received a few specific requests as of late that I may tackle first…