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Revelation
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Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Thu Feb 27, 2020 4:12 pm

Aviation Toulouse ( https://twitter.com/Frenchpainter/statu ... 0758788105 ) says:

The final #A380 convoy drive through the streets of Levignac near Toulouse heads to the final assembly line. :-( #AvGeek

Yet http://www.igg.fr/spip.php?rubrique8 shows convoys scheduled through late April.

So, is this really the last A380 road convoy ever?

If so, it would seem A380 production is ending in 2020 not 2021 as Airbus announced.
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N14AZ
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Thu Feb 27, 2020 4:32 pm

Revelation wrote:
So, is this really the last A380 road convoy ever?

If so, it would seem A380 production is ending in 2020 not 2021 as Airbus announced.

??? Production ends once the last A380 has been outfitted and delivered. The time span between convoy and delivery was usually about one year. So that would fit very well to ending in 2021.
 
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Thu Feb 27, 2020 4:34 pm

N14AZ wrote:
Revelation wrote:
So, is this really the last A380 road convoy ever?

If so, it would seem A380 production is ending in 2020 not 2021 as Airbus announced.

??? Production ends once the last A380 has been outfitted and delivered. The time span between convoy and delivery was usually about one year. So that would fit very well to ending in 2021.

I didn't realize fitting took that long. Thanks for the info. When do we think the last A380 will leave TLS for XFW?
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DrunkFunk
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Thu Feb 27, 2020 4:34 pm

It was the last "full convoy" I believe there are still some parts to be received (fuselage sections mostly) in a near future.
After that the trucks will transport Beluga XL sections.

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LaunchDetected
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Thu Feb 27, 2020 4:37 pm

Last convoy ever, MSN 272.

A380 production will probably end in 2020 in Toulouse, and in 2021 in Hamburg (where the aircraft is outfitted and painted).
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N14AZ
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Thu Feb 27, 2020 4:54 pm

Revelation wrote:
N14AZ wrote:
Revelation wrote:
So, is this really the last A380 road convoy ever?

If so, it would seem A380 production is ending in 2020 not 2021 as Airbus announced.

??? Production ends once the last A380 has been outfitted and delivered. The time span between convoy and delivery was usually about one year. So that would fit very well to ending in 2021.

I didn't realize fitting took that long. Thanks for the info. When do we think the last A380 will leave TLS for XFW?

I just checked my old files:

Time between convoy and roll-out FAL was typically about 3 months

Time between roll-out FAL and first flight, which often was identical with the transfer flight to XFW was typically 1 month

In other words 4 months between convoy and the aircraft leaving TLS.

But this was during the peak times when Airbus produced about 30 airframes per year. I guess they are not that pushy anymore, neither Airbus nor EK.
 
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Thu Feb 27, 2020 5:36 pm

Revelation wrote:

Comment in that twitter link:
Is that plane wearing an N95 mask? #coronavirusus #Covid19usa

:rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl:
 
Articuno
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Thu Feb 27, 2020 5:41 pm

There will be one more convoy with the fuselage of MSN 272.

This convoy carries the wings of MSN 272 and the fuselage of MSN 271.
 
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Thu Feb 27, 2020 5:44 pm

N14AZ wrote:
In other words 4 months between convoy and the aircraft leaving TLS.

But this was during the peak times when Airbus produced about 30 airframes per year. I guess they are not that pushy anymore, neither Airbus nor EK.


Over the past few years, completed and outfitted airframes have often been sitting in XFW for several months before delivery to EK -- there typically has been a burst of deliveries at year-end which really didn't match the expected cadence of one or so per month from the production line. In 2018, EK took delivery of four A380s in November and December (Airbus delivered 13 total in 2018). EK took six A380s in the last 32 days of 2016. They accepted three of the eight delivered last year in November or December.

IMO Airbus was working very hard with its customer to push deliveries out as far as possible while still hitting contractual delivery targets for each year.

FWIW once the decision was taken to end the program, it would have likely made the most sense to produce the remaining orders in the backlog at the most efficient production rate possible, even if that means some airframes sitting at XFW for several months into 2021. The customer is financially sound so they'll be delivered and slowing production even further would likely increase costs.
 
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Thu Feb 27, 2020 6:42 pm

Revelation wrote:
So, is this really the last A380 road convoy ever?


Nope.

It's the last convoy with a complete set of A380 parts. It's also the convoy that carries the last set of A380 wings. But it carries the fuselage sections for the set of wings that arrived on the previous convoy. So there will be one more convoy with fuselage sections only.
Good moaning!
 
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Thu Feb 27, 2020 6:54 pm

Articuno wrote:
There will be one more convoy with the fuselage of MSN 272.

This convoy carries the wings of MSN 272 and the fuselage of MSN 271.

DrunkFunk wrote:
It was the last "full convoy" I believe there are still some parts to be received (fuselage sections mostly) in a near future.
After that the trucks will transport Beluga XL sections.

PepeTheFrog wrote:
It's the last convoy with a complete set of A380 parts. It's also the convoy that carries the last set of A380 wings. But it carries the fuselage sections for the set of wings that arrived on the previous convoy. So there will be one more convoy with fuselage sections only.

I am glad there is at least one more trip and reuse of the convoys to move Beluga sections.

What is the fate of the three "ship carrier designed to transport the elements of the Airbus A380" ( ref: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ville_de_Bordeaux )?

Is there another task for them now that A380 is being shut down?
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Thu Feb 27, 2020 7:27 pm

Revelation wrote:
I am glad there is at least one more trip and reuse of the convoys to move Beluga sections.

What is the fate of the three "ship carrier designed to transport the elements of the Airbus A380" ( ref: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ville_de_Bordeaux )?

Is there another task for them now that A380 is being shut down?

I do believe (but without proof) that they can reuse the ship to shuffle stuff down to Mobile/TSN?

Michael
 
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Thu Feb 27, 2020 8:03 pm

eamondzhang wrote:
Revelation wrote:
I am glad there is at least one more trip and reuse of the convoys to move Beluga sections.

What is the fate of the three "ship carrier designed to transport the elements of the Airbus A380" ( ref: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ville_de_Bordeaux )?

Is there another task for them now that A380 is being shut down?

I do believe (but without proof) that they can reuse the ship to shuffle stuff down to Mobile/TSN?

Michael

I'd be surprised if a ship designed for near-coastal navigation (low draft to enter the ports, and go all to the way to Pauillac for example) would perform well (if at all allowed) in open seas such as the middle of the Atlantic Ocean.

They've been used to carry train cars (TGV) to Morocco; they can also be used to carry up to 150 trucks/500 cars. They are not dedicated to the A380 parts and can easily find usage elsewhere.
 
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Thu Feb 27, 2020 8:28 pm

eamondzhang wrote:
I do believe (but without proof) that they can reuse the ship to shuffle stuff down to Mobile/TSN?
Michael

Your post got me to do some research.

It seems in 2015 Airbus used a ship called BBC FUJI of German registry to move the first A32x parts from Hamburg to Mobile.

Ref: https://www.madeinalabama.com/2015/05/a ... a-factory/
Ref: https://www.vesselfinder.com/vessels/BB ... -218509000

Airbus reports the parts for the 50th A32x assembled in Mobile came from Hamburg via BBC HAREN but the vesslefinder did not find such a ship.

Image

Ref: https://www.airbus.com/aircraft/how-is- ... tions.html

It seems in 2019 Airbus commissioned a ship it called MOBILE EXPRESS to move parts between Saint-Nazaire and Mobile:

Image

Ref: https://www.airbus.com/newsroom/stories ... twork.html

The vesselfinder reports it was previously registered as WEDELLSBORG by Nordana Line A/S

Ref: https://www.vesselfinder.com/vessels/MO ... -247348700

I know very little about ships but it looks like the A380 ship VILLE DE BORDEAUX is constructed differently:

Image

Ref: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ville_de_Bordeaux
Last edited by Revelation on Thu Feb 27, 2020 8:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Thu Feb 27, 2020 8:30 pm

Revelation wrote:
eamondzhang wrote:
I do believe (but without proof) that they can reuse the ship to shuffle stuff down to Mobile/TSN?
Michael

Your post got me to do some research.

It seems in 2015 Airbus used a ship called BBC FUJI of German registry to move the first A32x parts from Hamburg to Mobile.

Ref: https://www.madeinalabama.com/2015/05/a ... a-factory/
Ref: https://www.vesselfinder.com/vessels/BB ... -218509000

Airbus reports the parts for the 50th A32x assembled in Mobile came from Hamburg via BBC HAREN but the vesslefinder did not find such a ship.

Image

Ref: https://www.airbus.com/aircraft/how-is- ... tions.html

It seems in 2019 Airbus commissioned a ship it called MOBILE EXPRESS to move parts between Saint-Nazaire and Mobile:

Image

Ref: https://www.airbus.com/newsroom/stories ... twork.html

The vesselfinder reports it was previously registered as WEDELLSBORG by Nordana Line A/S

Ref: https://www.vesselfinder.com/vessels/MO ... -247348700

I know very little about ships but it looks like the A480 ship VILLE DE BORDEAUX is constructed differently:

Image

Ref: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ville_de_Bordeaux


Nice findings, good research.

You should apply for the next Sherlock Holmes movie :)
Good moaning!
 
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Fri Feb 28, 2020 12:13 am

@Revelation
The sister ship of "Ville de Bordeaux" is "City of Hamburg" ( same build )
"City of Hamburg" will ship fuselage sections for the A350 and A330 to France and on the return trip, cockpits and wings for the A320 series to Hamburg.
Source : https://www.projectcargosummit.com/news ... dpr=accept
"Ville de Bordeaux" will take over the job of "The Spirit of Montoir" wich are the trips to Mobile FAL
 
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Fri Feb 28, 2020 5:55 am

I wonder how disruptive these convoys are to the residents living in the areas are.

Was there really no alternative way to move the parts?
 
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Fri Feb 28, 2020 11:31 am

dkramer7 wrote:
I wonder how disruptive these convoys are to the residents living in the areas are.

Was there really no alternative way to move the parts?


AFAIK, the convoys always move overnight to minimise disruption and the dates are known well in advance. The residents won’t have to be disrupted much more.
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Fri Feb 28, 2020 12:46 pm

dkramer7 wrote:

Was there really no alternative way to move the parts?

Oh yes, they were constructing a tunnel from Pauliac to TLS but were only halfway when Airbus announced that A380 production will be ending.
It is not yet known if it will be finished to transport the rivets in the future. :duck:
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Fri Feb 28, 2020 1:01 pm

scbriml wrote:
dkramer7 wrote:
I wonder how disruptive these convoys are to the residents living in the areas are.

Was there really no alternative way to move the parts?


AFAIK, the convoys always move overnight to minimise disruption and the dates are known well in advance. The residents won’t have to be disrupted much more.


I'm very glad I did manage to make the trek one time to watch the convoy pass through Levignac in the middle of a frosty night. Was quite fun to finally see the famous sight for real.

But I was also surprised that even a decade ago it was already a complete non-event - we were literally the only people there to witness it, and in the (rather boring and cold) half hour leading up to the convoy passing through, we saw I think maybe only two other people on the street before the first outriders rocked up to start setting up road blocks and making sure the path was clear of vehicles etc. In fact, it was rather embarassing that those guys looked at us drinking our Thermos of coffee - I imagine they joked with each other they had an audience of loser plane-spotters for a change - like the old days...
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Fri Feb 28, 2020 1:02 pm

This is a sad milestone, the last wing convoy. That means the wing plant is shut down and the supply chain dissolved. The body supply chain is at least partially shut down.

Sad, but all aircraft exit production.

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mpsrent
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Fri Feb 28, 2020 1:31 pm

scbriml wrote:
dkramer7 wrote:
I wonder how disruptive these convoys are to the residents living in the areas are.

Was there really no alternative way to move the parts?


AFAIK, the convoys always move overnight to minimise disruption and the dates are known well in advance. The residents won’t have to be disrupted much more.


I have a relative who lives near Langon. One summer night in 2012 I was able to witness the convoy travelling through the town. It was very impressive and rather than creating disruption, for many in the town it was a community event. Adults and children lined the streets at the convoy carefully inched it's way through the narrow streets.
 
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Fri Feb 28, 2020 3:31 pm

In time we can also review the production methods to see if the convoy system was the best option.
 
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Fri Feb 28, 2020 4:29 pm

Yes, I'm sad to see the last road convoy. Yes, I've been critical of the decision making process that resulted in the A380 and have pushed back on the unrealistic things many have said about it. I love all the tech that went into it. I love the interesting way its over-sized parts got transported to TLS even if it makes me dubious about the cost of doing so. I think most of us who are mature adults have had similar feelings when at a wake or a funeral: we are sad at the passing, and in our heads and some times in our conversations with others we're considering both the things we liked about the dearly departed, along with the things we didn't like. I've been sad at funerals of people who I thought were as close to perfect as humanly possible, and have been sad at funerals of people I have some pretty strong negative feelings about.
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Fri Feb 28, 2020 5:23 pm

We won't have to wait long for 747 shut down either:

viewtopic.php?t=1435359

Feel free to notice who started that thread.
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Fri Feb 28, 2020 6:40 pm

dkramer7 wrote:
I wonder how disruptive these convoys are to the residents living in the areas are.

Was there really no alternative way to move the parts?


Really, there wasn't. The fuselage parts were too big for Beluga and the wings too long for it. That eliminated flying them to Toulouse.
Those parts are also too big for railroad loading gauges, so no way to move them inland that way either.
 
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Fri Feb 28, 2020 7:22 pm

zuckie13 wrote:
dkramer7 wrote:
I wonder how disruptive these convoys are to the residents living in the areas are.

Was there really no alternative way to move the parts?


Really, there wasn't. The fuselage parts were too big for Beluga and the wings too long for it. That eliminated flying them to Toulouse.
Those parts are also too big for railroad loading gauges, so no way to move them inland that way either.

I think people don't understand how much stuff still moves on water. Lots of 777 and 747 stuff ends up at the Port of Everett. I think TLS is a bit unique because it is so far inland and so we see the ship to barge to truck movements.

I hope they do finish the tunnel to bypass the village. In the end I'm sure it will get good use. Yet I have seen cases where small villages/towns that complain about traffic complain even more once they get bypassed. It'll be interesting to see how this all works out.
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Fri Feb 28, 2020 7:30 pm

The biggest production inefficiencies for the A380 (and honesty probably most Airbuses) is not how things are transported but rather where they are built in the first place. A legacy of Airbus’s roots and desire to give different countries different shares of work, and for the A380 specifically the desire for multiple countries to have visible role in production on the high profile range topping flagship.
 
SeaKing4
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Fri Feb 28, 2020 8:24 pm

Polot wrote:
The biggest production inefficiencies for the A380 (and honesty probably most Airbuses) is not how things are transported but rather where they are built in the first place. A legacy of Airbus’s roots and desire to give different countries different shares of work, and for the A380 specifically the desire for multiple countries to have visible role in production on the high profile range topping flagship.


Really everything is within 784 miles of TLS. Try looking at the 787 for a start. But you wouldn’t be able to find a site big enough to place everything at one site for both manufacturers. Plus they both source out manufacturing to other companies. TLS , XFW, PAE, CHS, RNT are all just final assembly & test facilities.
 
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Thu Jun 18, 2020 1:51 pm

PepeTheFrog wrote:
Revelation wrote:
So, is this really the last A380 road convoy ever?

Nope.

It's the last convoy with a complete set of A380 parts. It's also the convoy that carries the last set of A380 wings. But it carries the fuselage sections for the set of wings that arrived on the previous convoy. So there will be one more convoy with fuselage sections only.

Now we have the last A380 parts convoy:

This is the 299th and last A380 parts convoy and 272th airframe. There will be six more convoys for BelugaXL (three per plane) #Airbus


Image

Ref: https://twitter.com/timhepher/status/12 ... 6212897792

It will be interesting to see if EK finds a way to not take #272.
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moa999
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Thu Jun 18, 2020 2:10 pm

And the others
 
Strato2
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Thu Jun 18, 2020 2:28 pm

Hope springs eternal.
 
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Thu Jun 18, 2020 2:50 pm

Strato2 wrote:
Hope springs eternal.

Fortunately for EK, their negotiating position is based on more than just hope.
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Re: Last A380 Road Convoy Ever?

Thu Jun 18, 2020 5:17 pm

Apparently the Airbus CEO chose to not miss the moment, according to https://twitter.com/AirFlottau/status/1 ... 3989392384 ...
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