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747-8: What's Going On?  
User currently offlineSCAT15F From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 402 posts, RR: 0
Posted (7 years 5 months 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 11113 times:

Just wondering, but we haven't had much news on the 747-8 for the past few weeks, or on the programs' prospects for 2007. Does anybody have any new information on:

-status of BA longhaul order/ announcement timeframe?

-progress or results of Emirates/Boeing 748 "tweaks"? (besides the "500nm more range needed" blurb by EK 2 weeks ago)

-oft-talked about potential China Airlines 748I order?

-the 5 unidentified 748F orders from late last year?

-more cargo orders for 748F (including possibility of UPS)

-firm configuration date for 748I (I assume depending on results of EK's request for more range)?



-Jon

26 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineERAUgrad02 From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 1227 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (7 years 5 months 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 11064 times:

Yes it's pretty quiet but I'm sure there are more orders to come. I'm just waiting for the magic to happen.


Desmond MacRae in ILM
User currently offlineBrendows From Norway, joined Apr 2006, 1020 posts, RR: 4
Reply 2, posted (7 years 5 months 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 10631 times:

Quoting SCAT15F (Thread starter):
-status of BA longhaul order/ announcement timeframe?

Announcement at the end of the summer is what I last saw.

Quoting SCAT15F (Thread starter):
-firm configuration date for 748I?

That will happen in the mid to late part of this year.


User currently offlineAA1818 From Trinidad and Tobago, joined Feb 2006, 3429 posts, RR: 4
Reply 3, posted (7 years 5 months 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 10286 times:

I think Boeing is trying to keep the payload and squeeze some extra range. The aformentioned airlines interested are probably waiting to see if Boeing can do it!!

I expect the 748 to be a success for Boeing. I expect that orders should pick up momentum in Q3 and Q4 '07!!!

AA1818



“The moment you doubt whether you can fly, you cease for ever to be able to do it.” J.M. Barrie (Peter Pan)
User currently offlineSEPilot From United States of America, joined Dec 2006, 6823 posts, RR: 46
Reply 4, posted (7 years 5 months 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 10222 times:

Quoting AA1818 (Reply 3):
I think Boeing is trying to keep the payload and squeeze some extra range. The aformentioned airlines interested are probably waiting to see if Boeing can do it!!

Agreed. Also I believe that many airlines are waiting to see how the Airbus problems work out. As to UPS, I think Airbus is desperately trying to keep them in the fold, but I expect sooner or later for them to say enough and order either 748's or 777F's. After the record orders of 2005 and 2006 it is not at all surprising to see a lull, especially when the planes won't be delivered for years.



The problem with making things foolproof is that fools are so doggone ingenious...Dan Keebler
User currently onlineStitch From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 30547 posts, RR: 84
Reply 5, posted (7 years 5 months 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 9667 times:
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When LH ordered 20, that pretty much "firmed" her configuration, at least as a baseline.

What is likely happening now is Boeing is figuring out where they can stuff extra fuel and refining the aerodynamics where still possible to improve the range to try and get close to EK's desires as well as make it that much closer to the A388 in overall competitiveness.

I would not be surprised to see some orders announced at the Paris Air Show. While Boeing's practice these past few years has not been to "hoard" orders for the air shows, I doubt the irony of announcing one or two large 748I orders in the shadow of the A388 on "home soil" is lost on them.  angel 


User currently offlineBmacleod From Canada, joined Aug 2001, 2242 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (7 years 5 months 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 9574 times:

Anyone heard anything from JL? The largest operator of 747s must have some interest in the 747-8.

I think BA will make a decision by mid-summer on the 747-8. NH has indicated they are not interested.



The engine is the heart of an airplane, but the pilot is its soul.
User currently offlineLTU932 From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 13864 posts, RR: 50
Reply 7, posted (7 years 5 months 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 9454 times:

Quoting Bmacleod (Reply 6):
Anyone heard anything from JL? The largest operator of 747s must have some interest in the 747-8.

I actually thought JL would follow NH suit, in terms of 747 phaseout and replacement of phased out 747s with 77Ws.


User currently offlineXT6Wagon From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 3390 posts, RR: 4
Reply 8, posted (7 years 5 months 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 9195 times:

I think one thing that will affect things is how much range difference between one with the overhead galleys and other floor space saving, but weight adding features. Certainly for some airlines the extra floorspace isn't as important as keeping the empty weight down and the range up. Even with the LH order fixing certain things. , I would guess that there is plenty of things for airlines and Boeing to toss back and forth on the negotiating table for the passenger orders... many of which will require time back in the engineering department to model. Certainly I think there will be a push by the airlines for better economics at the end of the range/payload chart even if it suffers in the shorter flights, as this will better match the 777/A380 flight profiles and leave the shorter haul flights to the 787 and smaller aircraft as indicated by industry trends.

On the cargo side, you have longer lead times than you might want to see in a order right now, and competition with the passenger model for the remaining 2011/2012 slots. Also with the 744 on the chopping block soon for several airlines when they either hit a downturn or plenty of surplus lift, I would say that its very possible that many cargo companies are waiting for a 744CF to come out of conversion instead of getting their capital tied up in a new aircraft order.


User currently offlineDAYflyer From United States of America, joined Sep 2004, 3807 posts, RR: 3
Reply 9, posted (7 years 5 months 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 8849 times:

Quoting XT6Wagon (Reply 8):
Certainly for some airlines the extra floorspace isn't as important as keeping the empty weight down and the range up

I agree with this. I think this applies to most airlines who have not ordered the A-380 to date. They are looking for decreased empty weight and increased range/payload combinations that the A-380 is just too big for.

I have actually wondered if Boeing has ever considered a 777-400ER for this purpose.......



One Nation Under God
User currently offlinePhilSquares From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 10, posted (7 years 5 months 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 8317 times:

Quoting XT6Wagon (Reply 8):
Certainly for some airlines the extra floorspace isn't as important as keeping the empty weight down and the range up.

This is the dilemma Boeing is facing. They still haven't finalised the 748I design and there is a split of potential customers on the range vs. capacity issue. LH and BA are rumored to be satisfied with the longer stretch and the 8000NM range while other customers, EK, want the shorter stretch and the 8500NM range.

Quoting XT6Wagon (Reply 8):
Also with the 744 on the chopping block soon for several airlines when they either hit a downturn or plenty of surplus lift, I would say that its very possible that many cargo companies are waiting for a 744CF to come out of conversion instead of getting their capital tied up in a new aircraft order.

I disagree. I think the "first tier" carriers will look at the 748F economics and will order the 748F. The "second tier" could opt to hold out for the 744BCF, if the price of used 744s decreases. The problem with the 744BCF, is it doesn't have the same floor loading as the 744F and there is no nose door. Both of those issues make running a mixed fleet somewhat more complex.


User currently onlineStitch From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 30547 posts, RR: 84
Reply 11, posted (7 years 5 months 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 7915 times:
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Quoting PhilSquares (Reply 10):
I disagree. I think the "first tier" carriers will look at the 748F economics and will order the 748F. The "second tier" could opt to hold out for the 744BCF, if the price of used 744s decreases. The problem with the 744BCF, is it doesn't have the same floor loading as the 744F and there is no nose door. Both of those issues make running a mixed fleet somewhat more complex.

Do you think 744BCFs may appeal more to airlines that are current 744 operators whom also happen to have a cargo arm, allowing them to "leverage" their passenger birds into freighters when their usefulness in their original role is done?


User currently offlineXT6Wagon From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 3390 posts, RR: 4
Reply 12, posted (7 years 5 months 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 7827 times:

Quoting PhilSquares (Reply 10):
disagree. I think the "first tier" carriers will look at the 748F economics and will order the 748F. The "second tier" could opt to hold out for the 744BCF, if the price of used 744s decreases. The problem with the 744BCF, is it doesn't have the same floor loading as the 744F and there is no nose door. Both of those issues make running a mixed fleet somewhat more complex.

The second factor though is timing. Many companies have already ordered the 748F. As the time when you can get a solid block of slots for the 748 moves out, the less likely you will see companies opting for ordering the 748 asap. We have seen this with the 787, if you don't get on early, there is less incentive to get on next as the book fills up. Your pricing gets higher, your frames get more scattered, and your locking up your money for a longer period of time. More over you are increasing your risk that the next latest and greatest thing will come out and you are locked into last weeks news. Would you be in a hurry to order a block of 30 787's if you got minimal discount and not going to see more than one or two frames till 2014? Same with the 748F. You are trading getting some frames earlier for much less risk and keeping your money in your pockets for a bit longer.

Quoting DAYflyer (Reply 9):
I have actually wondered if Boeing has ever considered a 777-400ER for this purpose.......

They did, but the issue gets to be that its a "stretch too far". You pick up more empty weight, yet can't increase the MTOW to any meaningful degree. Takeoff performance suffers as the longer tail reduces the angle of attack you can use while still on the runway. Engines are pushed out of their designed window of operation. What happens is you paint yourself in a corner. Its too uneconomical for short trips. It won't have the range/payload of the previous model. So where you win in max load medium range where the extra structural inefficiency doesn't kill margins, but away from the long range missions that require MTOW and heavy fuel loads. So its much more compelling to use the 300ER instead since its much lower risk and the 400ER would have minimal reward for this risk.


User currently offlinePhilSquares From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 13, posted (7 years 5 months 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 7319 times:

Quoting Stitch (Reply 11):
Do you think 744BCFs may appeal more to airlines that are current 744 operators whom also happen to have a cargo arm, allowing them to "leverage" their passenger birds into freighters when their usefulness in their original role is done?

So far KE is the only carrier that has done that. One problem is if a 744F is tech, you can't do an even swap with the BCF due to the floor loading issues. In addition, the lack of nose door increases the turn time so scheduling takes a hit there.

The other issue is economic service life. The 748F has more payload at a cheaper operating cost. That is offset with the ownership issues of a 744 vs. 748F. Now add the BCF conversion onto the 744, a D check and it really gets expensive.

Quoting XT6Wagon (Reply 12):
The second factor though is timing. Many companies have already ordered the 748F. As the time when you can get a solid block of slots for the 748 moves out, the less likely you will see companies opting for ordering the 748 asap.

I agree, although I think the economics of the 748F will really force companies to get on quick. However, Boeing is always willing to deal and the trade off for a later delivery date is a discount. Boeing always takes care of "good" customers too. If you look at LH's delivery dates, no one expected them to have such a good delivery position. It would be interesting to see just how Boeing has the delivery slots reserved.


User currently offlineXT6Wagon From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 3390 posts, RR: 4
Reply 14, posted (7 years 5 months 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 7162 times:

Quoting PhilSquares (Reply 13):
I agree, although I think the economics of the 748F will really force companies to get on quick.

I agree that the 748F has great economics, but when the 744's start going for cheap and get converted, the initial price compared to new pays for a hell of alot of years of extra fuel burn and higher upkeep. After all somehow 732 and 727 still run in freighter service. If the A380 fails to replace any 744's in use or no down turn happens for a couple years, the 748 will be the only game in town so.....


User currently offlineHa763 From United States of America, joined Jan 2003, 3632 posts, RR: 5
Reply 15, posted (7 years 5 months 4 days 16 hours ago) and read 4883 times:
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Quoting PhilSquares (Reply 13):
Quoting Stitch (Reply 11):
Do you think 744BCFs may appeal more to airlines that are current 744 operators whom also happen to have a cargo arm, allowing them to "leverage" their passenger birds into freighters when their usefulness in their original role is done?

So far KE is the only carrier that has done that.

JL is another that has done so as well.


User currently offlineEBJ1248650 From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 1932 posts, RR: 1
Reply 16, posted (7 years 5 months 4 days 16 hours ago) and read 4542 times:

Quoting PhilSquares (Reply 10):
This is the dilemma Boeing is facing. They still haven't finalised the 748I design and there is a split of potential customers on the range vs. capacity issue. LH and BA are rumored to be satisfied with the longer stretch and the 8000NM range while other customers, EK, want the shorter stretch and the 8500NM range.

So why not build the passenger version in two sub-versions or designate the longer one (length equal to that of the freighter) the -800 and the slightly shorter version the -900? All major customers satisfied that way.



Dare to dream; dream big!
User currently offlineJfk777 From United States of America, joined Aug 2006, 8276 posts, RR: 7
Reply 17, posted (7 years 5 months 4 days 16 hours ago) and read 4524 times:
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Cathay could be an expected order for 2007, they ordered 773ER last year. 748 would go nicely with the 777. Boeing is in and Airbus is out at Cathay.

User currently offlinePhilSquares From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 18, posted (7 years 5 months 4 days 16 hours ago) and read 4449 times:

Quoting EBJ1248650 (Reply 16):
So why not build the passenger version in two sub-versions or designate the longer one (length equal to that of the freighter) the -800 and the slightly shorter version the -900? All major customers satisfied that way.

That's certainly an option, but it all boils down to $$$. Is the market large enough to have two body lengths? And the additional certification costs.

Quoting XT6Wagon (Reply 14):
I agree that the 748F has great economics, but when the 744's start going for cheap and get converted,

The problem right now is there are no 744 pax aircraft available. If you have your own fleet, that's another story, but if you're on the market looking for aircraft, they're not going cheap at all!


User currently onlineStitch From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 30547 posts, RR: 84
Reply 19, posted (7 years 5 months 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 4178 times:
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Quoting XT6Wagon (Reply 14):
I agree that the 748F has great economics, but when the 744's start going for cheap and get converted, the initial price compared to new pays for a hell of alot of years of extra fuel burn and higher upkeep. After all somehow 732 and 727 still run in freighter service.

True, but those planes don't haul the payload a 747F does. I imagine "732CF" and "722CF" do short-haul spoke to spoke work mostly. A 744BCF is going to be plying the same routes her dedicated 744F and 748F sisters are. While a 744CBF can evidently get close to a 744F in terms payload and range, as PhilSquares noted up-thread, she is not optimized for the mission like a new-build 747F is. So it's not surprising dedicated cargo operators continue to choose new-build 747Fs.


User currently offlineXT6Wagon From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 3390 posts, RR: 4
Reply 20, posted (7 years 5 months 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 4073 times:

Quoting PhilSquares (Reply 18):
The problem right now is there are no 744 pax aircraft available. If you have your own fleet, that's another story, but if you're on the market looking for aircraft, they're not going cheap at all!

which is why I am talking about "down the road". If the A380s displace 744s sooner rather than later, it makes a big difference. However if the passenger market takes no downturn and the A380 trickles in like airbus is planning, Then the 744's will not be leaving fleets till 2010 or later and makes new build 748F's very attractive. Then again a downturn or Airbus pulling out a production cert and a pile of wiring harnesses out of its..... er... hat... there might be more than a few early 744's waiting for a second life. That said I dunno if the classic 747's even in low hour/cycle examples have any life as a conversion unless the frame is very cheap.


User currently offlinePhilSquares From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 21, posted (7 years 5 months 4 days 14 hours ago) and read 3424 times:

Quoting XT6Wagon (Reply 20):
That said I dunno if the classic 747's even in low hour/cycle examples have any life as a conversion unless the frame is very cheap.

The real problem in the market, is there are none of what you're talking about!

Quoting XT6Wagon (Reply 20):
If the A380s displace 744s sooner rather than later, it makes a big difference. However if the passenger market takes no downturn and the A380 trickles in like airbus is planning,

Not to start a A. vs. B. thread, but I think history has shown, it will be a trickle. Airlines have already been burned on fleet plans because of the delay. QF, SQ and EK are all trying to boost capacity via utilization because of the delay. So, I don't forsee any softening of the used 744 market.


User currently offlineWingedMigrator From United States of America, joined Oct 2005, 2212 posts, RR: 56
Reply 22, posted (7 years 5 months 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 3148 times:

Quoting Jfk777 (Reply 17):
Cathay could be an expected order for 2007

Very unlikely in 2007. See article in Flight International summarizing an interview with CX chairman Philip Chen.

Quote:

Chen says there are no immediate plans to order additional aircraft as Cathay has enough due to enter service over the next few years to meet capacity requirements. This will come as a setback to Airbus, which for years has been trying to convince Cathay to order the A380, given that it operates more than 20 747-400s.


User currently offlineSCAT15F From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 402 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (7 years 5 months 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 2728 times:

I was just wondering, why doesn't Boeing just offer both the 748I in the original 243 foot length for ALL customers?
Since no one wants to use the crown space for anything but extra passengers (12), you could still get 462 passengers AND 8500nm range, which would satisfy both LH and EK.

In fact, why not offer the 748F at that length as well, but WITH the stretched upper deck? The main deck would only lose 6 feet of length and it would gain all the space of the stretched upper deck (for smaller packages, etc). Not only would you have maximum commonality with the Intercontinental, but the freighter would probably be able to fly its 140 metric ton payload 5000nm vs 4475nm.  highfive 


User currently offlinePhilSquares From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 24, posted (7 years 5 months 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 2657 times:

Quoting SCAT15F (Reply 23):

In fact, why not offer the 748F at that length as well, but WITH the stretched upper deck? The main deck would only lose 6 feet of length and it would gain all the space of the stretched upper deck (for smaller packages, etc).

You forget the standard pallet buildup height is 3 meters. With the stretch upper deck you lose a lot of that floor space and have a height restricted maindeck area. How would you unload the upper deck? The smaller hump allows for maximum maindeck standard pallets. The upper deck space is enough for the supernumerary seating, lav, galley and crew rest area.

Quoting SCAT15F (Reply 23):
I was just wondering, why doesn't Boeing just offer both the 748I in the original 243 foot length for ALL customers?
Since no one wants to use the crown space for anything but extra passengers (12), you could still get 462 passengers AND 8500nm range, which would satisfy both LH and EK.

LH wants the bodies and EK wants the range. There in lies the problem. You say it's only 12 passengers but look at the revenue on an annual basis. The difference between profit and loss could very well be those 12 passengers.....


25 XT6Wagon : Not quite sure what you mean by that, but the 748 can only currently support one version of each model. Given an order of significant size, Boeing wo
26 Mah584jr : I think the biggest problem with the 748 and 787 program for that matter, is that in today's world the airlines call the shots way more than they ever
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