MBJ2000 From Germany, joined Dec 2005, 426 posts, RR: 0 Posted (10 years 4 months 3 weeks 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 2375 times:
I was wondering if the airlines nowadays aren't building their fleets too much on 'vapor-ware'?!
I see them buying like nuts planes that haven't even lifted on wheel in the air yet. They seem to believe anything A or B promise.
How can they have so much confidence? How was this dealt with before, in the 70's, 80's, 90's. I thought at that time they (most of them) first waited to see how a plane really flies before ordering 50 pcs.
Am I the only one who thinks that way?
Like most of life's problems, this one can be solved with bending -- Bender Unit 22
DL787932ER From United States of America, joined Dec 2005, 597 posts, RR: 1
Reply 1, posted (10 years 4 months 3 weeks 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 2347 times:
For transport-category jets I think it's always been the case that an aircraft manufacturer will wait to get a "launch customer" before committing to build a certain type of airplane. Part of that is the manufacturer working with the airline to design a plane around the airline's needs, and part is just some risk-sharing on the part of the manufacturer.
In the past this strategy has come back to bite manufacturers whose airplanes haven't met their promised design specifications - see Convair 990 (too slow), L-1011 (too late), MD-11 (too short range). But these days with advanced computer-based design, modeling, and simulation, manufacturers can be quite accurate in knowing how their designs will perform before they're built.