An Exercise In Aviation: Tinkering Engineer’s Fascinating Hobby

We hate to bring you crashing back down to reality (pun intended), but if you chance across this “wreck” in Hillsboro, Oregon then it’s probably Bruce Campbell’s housing project! The retired electrical engineer, now 68, has always had an inventive side. With the theoretical background of an engineer and a love for tinkering, Campbell overhauls planes that would have been sold for parts into spectacular upcycled works of art.


As with any artist, they see the final product that others have difficulty in visualizing. It is this vision that spurs him on to lovingly restore these unloved treasures. As the old adage goes, “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.” Campbell believes that an airplane’s use extends well beyond flight. With his vivid imagination and a large piece of land, he has managed to transform an out-of-service plane into a residence which is, well, out-of-this-world! We’re intrigued, let’s take a look inside this unusual home!

Sky’s The Limit

They say that you should hold fast to your dreams, and this is exactly what Mr. Bruce Campbell has done! Now retired, Campbell has had a long career as an electrical engineer; which has certainly equipped him with the skills and knowledge to live his dream. In his early 20s, a young Campbell bit the bullet and purchased 10-acres in the forest of Hillsboro, Oregon for a humble $23,000. His stage was set, his vision was clear, and he was to create something that the world had never seen before.

From a young age, Campbell loved to play with old objects and materials, designing and building objects with new or different uses. A true inventor even as a kid! It’s clear this is something that has remained with him, and when he finally decided to find himself a permanent home, it was fitting that he would build it himself. With his 10-acres, Campbell planned to construct a home out of a number of freight trucks. Keen on this idea, he went ahead and drew up plans to see his dream home come together. That was until he heard about a home that someone else had built, in Mississippi. Back to the drawing board, it seemed.

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