How did Custom Construction and Roofing Company in Roswell land a gig scrapping retired airliners? It's simple. They just asked. The company's owner, Brandon Arnold, says he'd asked the company's owner for years if he could do the work, and finally the owner said, "Can You Start Monday?"
Boys go through a lot of different career dreams as they grow up. For myself, I remember wanting to be an astronaut or airline pilot, a firefighter, a baseball player, and even a garbage man. Yes, it's true. Around age 6, I thought it looked pretty damn fun to zip down the street, standing on the bumper of those massive trucks, holding on by just one hand. A couple of the other common dream careers involve working with construction equipment and/or airplanes. At some point, you probably pretended to build or destroy things with Tonka trucks in your sandbox. But now imagine doing that as an adult!
Arnold's company landed a five-year contract with AerSale Aircraft & Engine Operations to dismantle, scrap and recycle planes. They use two Caterpillar 345C L Excavators, weighing in at 50 tons each. The CATs help them tear down planes as large as Boeing 747s in about four days. Once dismantled, usable parts are cleaned and refurbished, then sold on the used parts market, while the rest of the metal is recycled for scrap.
Top photo courtesy of Caterpillar. Excavator photo via Wikipedia commons.