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Mechanic Input During 777 Design Phase

Thu Jun 20, 2002 9:27 am

During my training class today, the instructor said that only one type of aircraft has ever had a mechanic help during its design phase (to facilitate ease of maintenance by placing components in easily accessible locations and such). Can anyone confirm or elaborate on this? Just how much weight did the Boeing engineers give his suggestions? And as far as the 777 is concerned is it a maintenance-friendly aircraft? I'd love to hear your thoughts on this...
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RE: Mechanic Input During 777 Design Phase

Thu Jun 20, 2002 11:18 am


If you can believe Boeing, they listened to mechanics quite attentively.

I have a copy of the April 9, 1994 supplement to the Seattle Post Intelligencer that is devoted to the 777. Page 5 is entitled "Collaboration Delivers the Goods" which describes the input the designers received from mechanics. Here are a couple of excerpts.....

"But Boeing's chief mechanic (Jack Hessburg) acknowledges the company's new teamwork approach to building airplanes is light-years ahead of past business practices."

"Airline mechanics, who were rarely consulted by Boeing in the past, now attend weekly brainstorming sessions to discuss strategies, critique the airplane's systems, and even help write the airplane's maintenance manuals."

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RE: Mechanic Input During 777 Design Phase

Thu Jun 20, 2002 6:36 pm

Boeing always plays up this effort about bringing in mechanics to help in the development of the aircraft. They did it with the B737 too but it's a PR move more than a design move. At Dornier we did it on the Do728 as well and I am sure it is quite common in the industry. We had what was called a design development team made up of a mix of backgrounds to help in the development phase of the aircraft. However it means little in the end Engineers will do what's necessary. Boeing always likes to tout this effort so mechanics will get a good "first impression", "Hey Bob did you know mechanics helped design this aircraft"? If they can get mechanics hyped up the aircraft will be better received in my opinion.


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