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Boeing Looks At Using More Domestic Suppliers  
User currently offlineSDQ777 From United States of America, joined Dec 2007, 58 posts, RR: 0
Posted (5 years 9 months 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 2327 times:

I read an article today on stating that Boeing is thinking of looking into using more domestic suppliers rather than outsourcing for their 787 program. I'm wondering if this may be an attempt to help the sluggish U.S. economy? http://articles.moneycentral.msn.com...anges-for-boeing-s-dreamliner.aspx

9 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineStitch From United States of America, joined Jul 2005, 31098 posts, RR: 85
Reply 1, posted (5 years 9 months 3 days 14 hours ago) and read 2227 times:
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We've been discussing it for a bit in this thread, but that thread is reaching 200 posts and has become more a discussion on specific 787 systems designs, so maybe a new thread is appropriate...


I don't believe it was the outsourcing itself that was the problem. Boeing has outsourced for decades since they can't do it all themselves. And they really started it with the 767 program (when the Japanese became work-sharing partners) and it didn't kill that program, nor the 777 nor the 747-400.

The problem was Boeing didn't properly exercise oversight over those partners to ensure they were exercising proper oversight of their own partners (which they were not). So the lowest tier of suppliers dropped the ball, which meant the subs higher up were impacted and finally all the way back to Boeing.


User currently offlinePar13del From Bahamas, joined Dec 2005, 7377 posts, RR: 8
Reply 2, posted (5 years 9 months 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 2102 times:

Just read another article on MSN.COM, thought going through my head is rather than re-working existing supplier contracts, what they should do is to invest in another production line and attempt to have two lines running simultaneously. Benefits include:

1. Not piss off the suppliers who signed on the first time and are not responsible for the mishaps, also allow them to stay in business and re-coup their investment.

2. Allow streamlinning of the process, test things from one line to the next.

3. Allow ramp up of production to cater to the huge backlog much sooner, if the economy picks up sooner rather than later.

4. The increase of employees will have a knock off political effect.

These will only have one small side effect, a huge amount of money for investment, and with the stock price almost half of what it was in 2007, should be a no brainer  Smile


User currently offlinePianos101 From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 365 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (5 years 9 months 3 days 12 hours ago) and read 2067 times:



Quoting Par13del (Reply 2):
invest in another production line and attempt to have two lines running simultaneously

It seems like you and many other people are missing one of the most important points of the whole "partner" fiasco that will prevent Boeing from doing things like this.

In legacy programs that only used build-to-print suppliers, Boeing itself did the engineering and, therefore, OWNED the engineering. They had the right to do whatever they wanted with that, whether that was to modify it, build another line, etc.

With all of the partners on the 787 program doing their own engineering, that information is owned by the partners themselves. For example, the detail design of all of the parts in the 47/48 section is owned by Vought and not by Boeing (although Boeing did supply the higher-level design and interfaces to the partners). Boeing has no right to take Vought's "proprietary" information and start building more planes without Vought's consent (which they will NEVER EVER consent to).

Boeing is already having extreme trouble getting the partners to commit to changes; this would not be an issue if Boeing can go change the engineering themselves (which is usually pretty easy). Unfortunately, it seems like the only way that Boeing could start a second production line would be to literally buy-out all of the partners (and their engineering). We've already seen it with GA, and it won't be long before we see it with other partners.


User currently offlineMCIGuy From United States of America, joined Mar 2006, 1936 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (5 years 9 months 3 days 12 hours ago) and read 2065 times:

Well, I have to say, this is the first time B has used this model so extensively and it's the first time they've stubbed their toes on a jet airliner program.


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User currently offlinePar13del From Bahamas, joined Dec 2005, 7377 posts, RR: 8
Reply 5, posted (5 years 9 months 3 days 8 hours ago) and read 1895 times:



Quoting Pianos101 (Reply 3):
In legacy programs that only used build-to-print suppliers, Boeing itself did the engineering and, therefore, OWNED the engineering. They had the right to do whatever they wanted with that, whether that was to modify it, build another line, etc.

I admit to never getting into the full details, but I always assumed the overall design of the a/c belonged to Boeing, and what most partners risk sharing was all about was actually building plants and equipment to build the various sections assigned to them, in a few cases, they were already working with composites, just not on the scale Boeing required.

Based on the article I read, it was mentioned that Boeing could not afford to alienate its suppliers / contractors, its why I suggested a second line rather than a full buy out. There are enough a/c ordered to keep all in business for a long time, too long of a backlog drive potential customers to other OEM's.


User currently offlinePianos101 From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 365 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (5 years 9 months 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 1799 times:

Quoting Par13del (Reply 5):
building plants and equipment to build the various sections assigned to them, in a few cases, they were already working with composites, just not on the scale Boeing required.

That would basically be the same as a traditional supplier. The difference between that and a risk sharing partner (at least in the 787 case) is that the actual design for each partner's section is owned by that company (i.e., their intellectual property).

Quoting Par13del (Reply 5):
Boeing could not afford to alienate its suppliers / contractors, its why I suggested a second line rather than a full buy out.

Right. Boeing can't risk that, but when you have (certain unnamed) partners that are making building this airplane so difficult (because of resisting changes, etc) then Boeing will have no choice but to dig into their deep pockets and buyout all of these ailing partners. The fact that Boeing has publicly admitted that there was "some" mess up on the outsourcing probably means that the problem is MUCH more widespread than they lead on. IDK, food for though I guess...

[Edited 2009-01-21 19:59:12]

User currently offlineSxf24 From United States of America, joined Aug 2007, 1262 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (5 years 9 months 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 1791 times:



Quoting Pianos101 (Reply 3):
With all of the partners on the 787 program doing their own engineering, that information is owned by the partners themselves. For example, the detail design of all of the parts in the 47/48 section is owned by Vought and not by Boeing (although Boeing did supply the higher-level design and interfaces to the partners). Boeing has no right to take Vought's "proprietary" information and start building more planes without Vought's consent (which they will NEVER EVER consent to).

The engineering is not proprietary to Vought - Boeing owns all of the designs for structural components.

Some system engineering is proprietary to the suppliers, just like on every other commercial airplane model.


User currently offlineWarRI1 From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 9044 posts, RR: 10
Reply 8, posted (5 years 9 months 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 1769 times:

As a union supporter, and an advocate of jobs here before there, I say it is about time Boeing owned up to the mistakes of outsourcing this aircraft as much as they have. They deserve the blackeye this fiasco has given them. I hope they have learned a lesson.


It is better to die on your feet, than live on your knees.
User currently offlinePianos101 From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 365 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (5 years 9 months 2 days 19 hours ago) and read 1594 times:



Quoting Sxf24 (Reply 7):
The engineering is not proprietary to Vought - Boeing owns all of the designs for structural components.

I don't think that's true, at least on the small scale of individual detail parts (which is what we're talking about here anyway). Each partner has their own engineering/stress departments (in addition to the manufacturing that they'd have as a traditional supplier anyway). Although Boeing processes were followed and Boeing provided the general layout and interface requirements, along with some templates for certain parts (beams, etc) all of the engineering and analysis was performed by the partners themselves. That is their intellectual property. Why do you think partners are so resistant to having to change their engineering (it costs money), and, for that matter, why do you think Boeing cannot just go change engineering drawings whenever they want on their own with their own engineers (forget about manufacturing issues that is a separate issue)?


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