Flying Colours regards its 13th and most recent CRJ conversion as its most ambitious–“an aircraft completely personalized to [the client’s] requirements.” The company worked with Harry Schnaper (the private owner’s designer), lead in-house designer Kate Ahrens and its engineering team to create “externally and internally, its most complex, bespoke ExecLiner yet.”
The specification incorporated a number of firsts that involved extensive engineering and design innovation: a clean-sheet design shower in the aft lavatory (the first in a CRJ conversion), a customized pivoting bed enabling passengers to store the bed against the aft-cabin wall and an Elbit Systems head-up display and infrared enhanced-vision system. Flying Colours also designed an integrated smoke-extraction system.
“The client wanted to sleep, shower and have the option to live on his airplane when traveling on business,” said marketing executive v-p Eric Gillespie, who oversaw the project. “He is effectively benefitting from a cabin with features similar to [those of] a narrowbody aircraft, but without the associated cost.”
The forward cabin features six electric seats, made in cooperation with AST Seating, with options for recline, vertical adjustment and leg rests and a memory pre-set option along with electric heating, massage features and controllable lumbar support.
An in-flight entertainment (IFE) system was custom-designed with Esoteric SkyPad iPad control of onboard media, IFE and cabin lights, blinds and temperature. Ultrasone designed the IFE headphones. Other IFE features included video teleconferencing, a 20-terabyte server holding more than 7,500 films and 52,000 songs, five telephone lines and projection of presentations to all monitors. A new FAA STC was developed for final certification of the aircraft.–I.G.