Hollow-core slabs for Caravelle's display site

Torstai 4.5.2023 - Reino Myllymäki


The Caravelle III, which is owned by Aviation Museum Society Finland, will be placed on display at Turku airport. The display site is a fenced area, which now has gravel surface. The aircraft will be displayed with its landing gear down, but a trestle will be placed between its tyres and the ground. The ground plate of the trestle is 300 x 300 mm.

An aircraft made of duraluminium is light but with the snow, wind and visitor loads considered, the Caravelle weighs so much that the surface pressure which is created under the ground plate will require some sort of concrete slab under it. After some calculations it was decided that three 1 x 2 m concrete slabs are sufficient. Consolis Parma hollow-core slab factory in Tuusula checked their surplus storage and found three hollow-core slabs, three metres long, and donated them to the Caravelle-project. We appreciate this kind of recycling!


Photo by Jussi Mäkelä.

You may wonder whether hollow core slabs could not have been found closer to Turku, where the aircraft is. Yes, they probably would have, but this solution has an extra twist: during the winter Aviation Museum Society acquired a 40-foot sea container from an auction and it has been waiting on the transporting company R. Stenvall’s yard in Tuusula to be moved to Turku.

To kill the famous two flies with one blow, Jussi Mäkelä from R. Stenvall fetched the hollow-core slabs and loaded them into the sea container, and the journey to Turku could begin. The cherry on the cake was that Mäkelä borrowed a 1968 Vanaja truck from Raimo Stenvall’s private car museum to fetch the slabs!


The hollow-core slabs were delivered to Turku airport and the sea container was taken to the hall in Pansio, where the Caravelle restoration work is going on. At the end of May the aircraft will be assembled on the three slabs at the airport.


Finavia (the airport operator in Finland) lent a helping hand and unloaded the three hollow-core slabs, each weighing about 1,5 tons, from the sea container with a wheel loader fitted with forks. The slabs were placed on the ground to wait for assembly. The aim is to dig the slabs into the ground so that only the top part is visible. The slabs will be placed under the main landing gear and the nose wheel so that the area can later be surfaced with asphalt. This, however, has proved to be so expensive that a sponsor will be needed.

Take part in the Caravelle’s fund-raising campaign!

Photos by Janne Salonen except if otherwise mentioned.

Avainsanat: aviation history, restoration, Caravelle, SE-DAF, Sven Viking