Pictures below are of auto mechanic, Ding Shilu, successfully taking off in his airplane built from recycled parts. Innovation is every bit about achieving things on the ‘cheap,’ especially in our world where we are consuming earth’s resources at alarming rates. I was especially impressed by his price tag.
China Daily reported: “Ding Shilu, an automobile mechanic, sits in his self-made aircraft to prepare a test-flight at a frozen reservoir in Shenyang, Liaoning province February 25, 2011. The aircraft which weights about 130 kg (287 lbs) and made of recycled materials including three motorbike engines and plastic cloth, cost about 2600 yuan ($395), local media reported.”
While trying to find out more about Ding, I came across some pretty ugly reactions. A simple and easy story of triumph and ingenuity is instead visited by ill-will and cynicism. These reactions are all too common when it comes to anything ‘China’ or ‘Chinese’ in the ‘West.’ I some times wish the more sensable lot would pause and think why there are so many mean lemmings in their society. (If you are new to this blog, I suggest you have a read at one of our more recent posts, “China Hacking, Poison and Piracy,” and see what we think are the root-cause of this ignorance.)
Well, you tell me, why do you think Ding’s story illicits this kind of response?
Ford, high off their recent legal battle with Ferrari has launched a lawsuit based around design copyright infringement.
I’d rather make an ekranoplan.
All the excitement of flying with no scary heights to fall and die from.
No doubt a ton of Harbor Freight tools were involved.
Confucius say man with cheap plane have expensive crash.
ChiefPontiaxe promoted this comment
“Shilu was later crushed to learn the airplane’s already been invented.”
Moments later, Shilu was ACTUALLY crushed BY his invention.
“Is there beverage service on this flight?”
“Yes sir, you’ll find a Tsingtao or two duct taped to the wing spar behind you. Be careful which piece of tape you remove, though.”
Said Ding Shilu, “I fry kitty hawk”
Later 300 Chinese were seen to arrive at his workshop with Woks and rice looking for a winged cat.
snapoversteer, Arbiter of D’Elegance promoted this comment
Baby Beater Benz
Chinese manufacturing principles:
Easy-to-assemble by small children?
…um, where does all this lead go? Oh, look, a new food factory was built.
‘Shilu was later “crushed” to learn the airplane’s already been invented.’
Is there anything to this story you aren’t telling us?
PotbellyJoe – Mission critical commodity, ask my bosses…
Brilliant! This plane will make the Great Wall of China twice as useless as the Maginot Line!
Yeah, but to sell it retail in the states it goes for $3000.00
TrampaOnline promoted this comment
Graf von Geistkoenig
Well, damn. There goes my self-esteem for the day.
Seriously: impressive. Have to find a good tubing supplier in Queens someday.
Care Bear Spiegel Stare
Make it light, simple, and cheap.
make it gaaaaaaaaaaaaay.
Flying one of these is unfulfilling. Right after you land you always feel like you didnt go up in the first place and need to fly again
This is why I don’t get into airplanes. I like to build things myself. Build a car and make a mistake? You crash, but you have a pretty good chance of survival. Build a plane and make a mistake? Die. That’s it. You just die. Happy motoring!
“Man dies in $395 airplane. Should have spent $500.”