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scbriml
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Tue Jun 02, 2020 12:16 pm

Phosphorus wrote:
So, yes, it's being sold off, piecemeal. One might still get part of the action!


Sounds like some a.netters should start a gofundme page and buy that stuff, then they can continue to manufacture 747s even if nobody's buying. ;)
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Stitch
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Tue Jun 02, 2020 3:50 pm

I admit I don't know what kind of tooling is specific to major structures like fuselage and wing panels, but I didn't see anything that looked like it was large enough for that.

Of course, that could mean that kind of specialty equipment is too expensive and unique for a "general auction", which is what these look like. So they might very well have been sold on via a private sale or went direct to a scrapper.

I would think that if Boeing had bought said tooling, they would not keep it a secret, so I do not believe they are storing it away in an "undisclosed location".
 
oschkosch
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Tue Jun 02, 2020 4:47 pm

scbriml wrote:
Phosphorus wrote:
So, yes, it's being sold off, piecemeal. One might still get part of the action!


Sounds like some a.netters should start a gofundme page and buy that stuff, then they can continue to manufacture 747s even if nobody's buying. ;)



or we do a gofundme and buy some vitial toolings and then destroy them. Then maybe the discussion is over? :biggrin: :rotfl:
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Phosphorus
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Tue Jun 02, 2020 6:23 pm

oschkosch wrote:
scbriml wrote:
Phosphorus wrote:
So, yes, it's being sold off, piecemeal. One might still get part of the action!


Sounds like some a.netters should start a gofundme page and buy that stuff, then they can continue to manufacture 747s even if nobody's buying. ;)



or we do a gofundme and buy some vitial toolings and then destroy them. Then maybe the discussion is over? :biggrin: :rotfl:


Oh come on. The tooling could be long destroyed (cue 757), and the factory could be long turned into storage space and parking lots (cue C-17), and the threads of possible production restart would still crop up.
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PepeTheFrog
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Tue Jun 02, 2020 6:26 pm

scbriml wrote:
Revelation wrote:
The volume of orders needed for restarting production of these elements is said to be 100 frames, quite concrete.


Even with the spike in Covid related freight, it’s very hard to see Boeing securing anywhere close to 100 commitments. Especially if the part about not even responding to customers‘ enquiries about possible orders is true.


Yep, and Covid is only temporary. The surge for air freight will come to a halt.
Good moaning!
 
2175301
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Tue Jun 02, 2020 7:30 pm

Stitch wrote:
I admit I don't know what kind of tooling is specific to major structures like fuselage and wing panels, but I didn't see anything that looked like it was large enough for that.

Of course, that could mean that kind of specialty equipment is too expensive and unique for a "general auction", which is what these look like. So they might very well have been sold on via a private sale or went direct to a scrapper.

I would think that if Boeing had bought said tooling, they would not keep it a secret, so I do not believe they are storing it away in an "undisclosed location".


What makes you think that Boeing would issue a press release on such a minor issue as putting something into storage. I suggest that you look at their press release page and notice what kind of information warrants "telling the world."

My information from a friend who works at Boeing is that the largest of the key tooling was put into storage, that there was a decision process on what tooling should be kept for a while "just in case" and what would be relatively cheap to replace. As others (and I) have stated before; it will take a certain minimum number of orders for Boeing to reconsider restarting (I've estimated 30 orders, and lowered that to 20 should Boeing feel a need to keep the 748F available for post 2028 reasons). I personally do not see where they could come from (not even the 20). It will cost money to reset things up and replace the smaller tooling, which has to be spread over enough frames to keep the cost of any future 748F reasonable.

I suspect that the only reason that the original article that started this thread about the possibility of future production and the discussions is that Boeing does actually have a realistic option should enough demand appear. I don't think that option would realistically exist if the main large tooling was destroyed already.

Note: I'm not aware of any documentation that Boeing issued a Final Last Call either. Perhaps for the same reason. I think they were just letting it die a natural death... and now there might be a reason to at least rethink that. Show us that announcement somewhere as well.

Have a great day,
 
FGITD
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Tue Jun 02, 2020 8:13 pm

Phosphorus wrote:
oschkosch wrote:
scbriml wrote:

Sounds like some a.netters should start a gofundme page and buy that stuff, then they can continue to manufacture 747s even if nobody's buying. ;)



or we do a gofundme and buy some vitial toolings and then destroy them. Then maybe the discussion is over? :biggrin: :rotfl:


Oh come on. The tooling could be long destroyed (cue 757), and the factory could be long turned into storage space and parking lots (cue C-17), and the threads of possible production restart would still crop up.


You could host a forum Q&A with the CEOs of Boeing, and every major airline where the answer to every question is "The 757 is not coming back" and the very same day there'd be a 60 page topic titled "Boeing CEO meets airline execs to discuss resumption of 757 production"

It's great that the 747 brings out the nostalgia and emotion in so many. I get it, I've loaded hundreds of them and flown on dozens. Lovely airplane, and truly a marvel. But it's time has passed.
 
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Stitch
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Tue Jun 02, 2020 8:22 pm

2175301 wrote:
What makes you think that Boeing would issue a press release on such a minor issue as putting something into storage.


Because they've done it before on this very issue?

Back in 2015, Triumph and Vought wanted to get out of the 747 supplier business because they were losing money with the low production rate and Boeing publicly announced via the media plans to purchase their equipment and set up shop in a company-owned facility in Georgia. In 2016, Boeing then subsequently publicly announced via the media that they had decided against that plan. Later that year, UPS announced an order for 14 frames which effectively saved the program by allowing the suppliers to produce at a rate that didn't lose them money.

For the record, I can believe Boeing bought the major tooling and stashed it in a warehouse in California. I mean the 757 FAL tooling evidently still exists in a hidden warehouse in the Seattle metroplex even though it's been a.net tribal knowledge since 2005 that it was all destroyed so anything is possible.
 
Noshow
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Tue Jun 02, 2020 8:38 pm

How many years would the USAF formally demand spare parts availability? At least in theory? 30 years?
They ordered those final call C-32s.
 
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Stitch
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Tue Jun 02, 2020 9:16 pm

Noshow wrote:
How many years would the USAF formally demand spare parts availability? At least in theory? 30 years? They ordered those final call C-32s.


Just for clarification, the kind of "spares" we are talking about is the major structural components that are assembled at Everett into actual 747 fuselages and wings. So they are something that is only built once for the frame (any in-service fuselage damage would be repaired with patches - damage to a level that required an all new structural assembly would be a write-off).

Items like this:

Image
 
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Stitch
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Tue Jun 09, 2020 4:38 pm

So here is an interesting wrinkle...

As many of us expected, UPS agreed to take the Volga-Dnepr NTU 747-8F (currently in ABC Cargo colors) and the frame is now at PDX to be re-painted in UPS colors.

However, Boeing agreed to count this frame as one of the 13 UPS had remaining in their backlog, which means UPS will now be taking one less new-build freighter then they had on contract.

So this means that Boeing could have one "open" production slot for a new-build 747-8F it can sell. And if it has the ability to produce the three other Volga-Dnepr NTU 747-8Fs that have not yet entered production, they could have up to four new production slots available.

When the Volga-Dnepr contract wrangling hit the news, there was rumors that UPS would not only take the ABC Cargo livery frame already built, but also the other three they Volga-Dnepr were contracted to take and then order up to three more on top of that. I'm on record as believing that Boeing probably did not source the parts to make those three remaining Volga-Dnepr frames, but perhaps they did and that is where the rumors of UPS taking at least four new frames came from (as in they would take all four frames previously planned for Volga-Dnepr).

So could UPS eventually have a fleet of 32 747-8F (the 28 they ordered plus the four Volga-Dnepr NTUs)? And can Boeing actually make more beyond the 16 they in-theory have firm/cancelled orders for?
 
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Revelation
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Tue Jun 09, 2020 6:21 pm

Stitch wrote:
So here is an interesting wrinkle...

As many of us expected, UPS agreed to take the Volga-Dnepr NTU 747-8F (currently in ABC Cargo colors) and the frame is now at PDX to be re-painted in UPS colors.

However, Boeing agreed to count this frame as one of the 13 UPS had remaining in their backlog, which means UPS will now be taking one less new-build freighter then they had on contract.

So this means that Boeing could have one "open" production slot for a new-build 747-8F it can sell. And if it has the ability to produce the three other Volga-Dnepr NTU 747-8Fs that have not yet entered production, they could have up to four new production slots available.

When the Volga-Dnepr contract wrangling hit the news, there was rumors that UPS would not only take the ABC Cargo livery frame already built, but also the other three they Volga-Dnepr were contracted to take and then order up to three more on top of that. I'm on record as believing that Boeing probably did not source the parts to make those three remaining Volga-Dnepr frames, but perhaps they did and that is where the rumors of UPS taking at least four new frames came from (as in they would take all four frames previously planned for Volga-Dnepr).

So could UPS eventually have a fleet of 32 747-8F (the 28 they ordered plus the four Volga-Dnepr NTUs)? And can Boeing actually make more beyond the 16 they in-theory have firm/cancelled orders for?

Your post points out we don't have much visibility into the Boeing supply chain. It'd be interesting if someone hired spotters watching for the big fuse parts to show up presumably via train from the Port of Everett (I vaguely recall hearing they were assembled in CA and floated by barge to WA). I was told that investors used to hire spotters to track the flow of mainframes out of IBM's main assembly plants back in the 80s/90s since they gave a good approximation of what IBM's quarterly earnings would look like. It seems we have no visibility into this stuff so we'd all be guessing.
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PepeTheFrog
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Tue Jun 09, 2020 6:25 pm

Stitch wrote:
So here is an interesting wrinkle...

As many of us expected, UPS agreed to take the Volga-Dnepr NTU 747-8F (currently in ABC Cargo colors) and the frame is now at PDX to be re-painted in UPS colors.

However, Boeing agreed to count this frame as one of the 13 UPS had remaining in their backlog, which means UPS will now be taking one less new-build freighter then they had on contract.

So this means that Boeing could have one "open" production slot for a new-build 747-8F it can sell. And if it has the ability to produce the three other Volga-Dnepr NTU 747-8Fs that have not yet entered production, they could have up to four new production slots available.


Or Boeing may already have canceled that production slot...
Good moaning!
 
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Stitch
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Tue Jun 09, 2020 6:32 pm

Revelation wrote:
It'd be interesting if someone hired spotters watching for the big fuse parts to show up presumably via train from the Port of Everett (I vaguely recall hearing they were assembled in CA and floated by barge to WA).


Makes sense as there is the rail spur out to the peer in Mukilteo which is used for 767 and 777 assemblies from Japan, I believe. Back in February 2013, Boeing had two 747-8F upper deck sections (one forward and one aft) flown in from Triumph's Texas factory via An-124.
 
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Stitch
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Tue Jun 09, 2020 6:34 pm

PepeTheFrog wrote:
Or Boeing may already have canceled that production slot...


That is also a possibility. They could keep the parts in their spares in case of future need.
 
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PepeTheFrog
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Tue Jun 09, 2020 6:38 pm

Revelation wrote:
Your post points out we don't have much visibility into the Boeing supply chain. It'd be interesting if someone hired spotters watching for the big fuse parts to show up presumably via train from the Port of Everett (I vaguely recall hearing they were assembled in CA and floated by barge to WA). I was told that investors used to hire spotters to track the flow of mainframes out of IBM's main assembly plants back in the 80s/90s since they gave a good approximation of what IBM's quarterly earnings would look like. It seems we have no visibility into this stuff so we'd all be guessing.


I believe Triumph Group already closed its doors, so it will be difficult to spot anything.
Good moaning!
 
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Tue Jun 09, 2020 7:07 pm

PepeTheFrog wrote:
Revelation wrote:
Your post points out we don't have much visibility into the Boeing supply chain. It'd be interesting if someone hired spotters watching for the big fuse parts to show up presumably via train from the Port of Everett (I vaguely recall hearing they were assembled in CA and floated by barge to WA). I was told that investors used to hire spotters to track the flow of mainframes out of IBM's main assembly plants back in the 80s/90s since they gave a good approximation of what IBM's quarterly earnings would look like. It seems we have no visibility into this stuff so we'd all be guessing.

I believe Triumph Group already closed its doors, so it will be difficult to spot anything.

Yes, the issue is whether or not the parts got built before the closing. My point is addressing "I'm on record as believing that Boeing probably did not source the parts to make those three remaining Volga-Dnepr frames, but perhaps they did". Someone may have been spotting all along but just not sharing what they know because the information may have value to the investing community. Regardless, none of us seem to know one way or the other.
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Strato2
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Tue Jun 09, 2020 7:28 pm

Stitch wrote:
Back in 2015, Triumph and Vought wanted to get out of the 747 supplier business because they were losing money with the low production rate and Boeing publicly announced via the media plans to purchase their equipment and set up shop in a company-owned facility in Georgia. In 2016, Boeing then subsequently publicly announced via the media that they had decided against that plan. Later that year, UPS announced an order for 14 frames which effectively saved the program by allowing the suppliers to produce at a rate that didn't lose them money.


747 production rate in 2015 was 1.3 per month. In 2016 the rate was cut to 0.5 per month that is still in effect. How do you think when the production rate was slashed by more than half they suddenly started to make money?
 
workhorse
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Tue Jun 09, 2020 8:09 pm

Revelation wrote:
Someone may have been spotting all along but just not sharing what they know because the information may have value to the investing community. Regardless, none of us seem to know one way or the other.


Even more than the investing community, it may be of value to Volga-Dnepr's lawyers. :devil:

If indeed, as has been suggested, Boeing took money for frames they knew they couldn't build...
 
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Stitch
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Tue Jun 09, 2020 8:29 pm

Strato2 wrote:
747 production rate in 2015 was 1.3 per month. In 2016 the rate was cut to 0.5 per month that is still in effect. How do you think when the production rate was slashed by more than half they suddenly started to make money?


I am going to guess Boeing offered them more money after UPS said they would buy at least 14 and maybe 28. And if UPS was the only customer willing to commit to a large buy, I could see Boeing deciding that it was not worth the cost of buying out Triumph and moving everything to Georgia to only mothball or or scrap it within a decade.
 
CX747
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Tue Jun 09, 2020 9:22 pm

Stitch wrote:
PepeTheFrog wrote:
Or Boeing may already have canceled that production slot...


That is also a possibility. They could keep the parts in their spares in case of future need.


There is a whole number of possibilities going on with the 747 line.

A= ABC 747 frame already built
B= UPS 747 just cancelled

You could have UPS taking up frame A and asking for the PDP on frame B to "count" towards A. Upon that, Boeing cancels airframe B, with the understanding that UPS will "re-order" it, when they finalize the new UPS deal for the additional ABC frames & new production slot frames not previously known about.

That whole movement could allow UPS to use other financial avenues for payment on frame B or put that "cost" in this fiscal quarter.

Again, a whole bunch of moves going on with the line at this time.
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Stitch
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Tue Jun 09, 2020 9:48 pm

Just an FYI, in researching for a very long post I just made in the Volga-Dnepr / Boeing legal wrangling thread, I found a comment by an "industry analyst" that said that in 2018, Boeing ordered parts to complete 20 747-8F. At the time, Boeing had a firm order for 14 from UPS and an LoI for 5 from Volga-Dnepr (of which they subsequently firmed four throughout December 2018).

While not definitive proof, it does reinforce my belief that by 2018 Boeing was doing "last call" for 747-8 family orders and was placing their final parts orders with suppliers.
 
workhorse
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Tue Jun 09, 2020 10:45 pm

Stitch wrote:
Just an FYI, in researching for a very long post I just made in the Volga-Dnepr / Boeing legal wrangling thread, I found a comment by an "industry analyst" that said that in 2018, Boeing ordered parts to complete 20 747-8F. At the time, Boeing had a firm order for 14 from UPS and an LoI for 5 from Volga-Dnepr (of which they subsequently firmed four throughout December 2018).

While not definitive proof, it does reinforce my belief that by 2018 Boeing was doing "last call" for 747-8 family orders and was placing their final parts orders with suppliers.


OK, so if I understand this correctly:

- Boeing ordered parts for 20
- UPS ordered 14
- Volga-Dnepr ordered 4
- Volga-Dnepr's 4 have been canceled when one of them was already built
- UPS canceled 1 of their 14 and ordered instead the 1 already built for Volga-Dnepr

This means that right now Boeing is still capable to sell (and build) 6 more. Is that right?
 
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Stitch
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Tue Jun 09, 2020 11:48 pm

workhorse wrote:
This means that right now Boeing is still capable to sell (and build) 6 more. Is that right?


Correct.

And there have been rumors that UPS might take more than their contractual 28.
 
workhorse
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 12:15 am

Stitch wrote:
workhorse wrote:
This means that right now Boeing is still capable to sell (and build) 6 more. Is that right?


Correct.

And there have been rumors that UPS might take more than their contractual 28.


OK, got it, thank you for your answer! It would be great to see 6 more 747s!

Question: why doesn't Boeing (re)sell 4 of these 6 to Volga-Dnepr?

Like "OK guys, you didn't pay for this one on time so we had to sell it to someone else, but since now you finally want all 4 that you've originally ordered AND have the money, we are going to build them for you"? Why wouldn't they do that? Then they could sell the remaining 2 to UPS...
 
jagraham
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 12:42 am

SteelChair wrote:
CX747 wrote:
Stitch wrote:
Ironic that when the C-17 was in production, the USAF was upset that Congress kept shoving them down their throats because parts for the frames were built in so many Districts.

And yet only a handful of years after the production line is retired and dismantled, suddenly they want a few dozen more.

:crazy:


Crazy indeed. Similar thing in the USN. F-14 gets retired, the Super Hornet can do everything. Now we are throwing billions at trying to get the Tomcat replacement to actually do what it's predecessor did!!!!


Like sitting broken on the deck?

Before we get back on topic, let's agree that the F14 was unreliable, complex and expensive, dangerous, and lacked modern avionics. And much of its job was taken over by the AEGIS equipped destroyers and cruisers


The An/APG 73 and AN/APG 79, together with the AIM120C, gave the F18E the ability to do what the F14 did. With greater reliability and less cost. As for the F14, it's incredible what it did considering it's a 1960s design. Only the TF30 engines were a true disappointment. Of course if you didn't like the F14, you could go back to the F111B. Or maybe the F4?
 
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Stitch
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 1:05 am

workhorse wrote:
Question: why doesn't Boeing (re)sell 4 of these 6 to Volga-Dnepr? Like "OK guys, you didn't pay for this one on time so we had to sell it to someone else, but since now you finally want all 4 that you've originally ordered AND have the money, we are going to build them for you"? Why wouldn't they do that? Then they could sell the remaining 2 to UPS...


They may not have the money for the rest they still had on order. Or even the ones they fought over, for that matter.

That the court straight-up dismissed all of Volga-Dnepr's claims might very well be that Volga-Depnr's claims of "having the money" was more a "conditional agreement" with a lender that still needed to be firmed up. Or maybe Volga-Dnepr was trying to secure delivery while still owing money ("we still owe you $35 million on this 747-8F, but we have $20 million we can give you now to take delivery and we'll get you the rest in 90 days"). If they took delivery and then defaulted on the remainder, Boeing has to go to court to get an impound order and then secure the frame (assuming it is in a country Boeing can do so) and they might have considered said "default risk" too high - especially when UPS was ready to do a wire-transfer for the full amount agreed upon to take the frame off Boeing's hands.
 
iamlucky13
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 1:19 am

Stitch wrote:
workhorse wrote:
Question: why doesn't Boeing (re)sell 4 of these 6 to Volga-Dnepr? Like "OK guys, you didn't pay for this one on time so we had to sell it to someone else, but since now you finally want all 4 that you've originally ordered AND have the money, we are going to build them for you"? Why wouldn't they do that? Then they could sell the remaining 2 to UPS...


They may not have the money for the rest they still had on order. Or even the ones they fought over, for that matter.

That the court straight-up dismissed all of Volga-Dnepr's claims might very well be that Volga-Depnr's claims of "having the money" was more a "conditional agreement" with a lender that still needed to be firmed up. Or maybe Volga-Dnepr was trying to secure delivery while still owing money ("we still owe you $35 million on this 747-8F, but we have $20 million we can give you now to take delivery and we'll get you the rest in 90 days"). If they took delivery and then defaulted on the remainder, Boeing has to go to court to get an impound order and then secure the frame (assuming it is in a country Boeing can do so) and they might have considered said "default risk" too high - especially when UPS was ready to do a wire-transfer for the full amount agreed upon to take the frame off Boeing's hands.


I would not be surprised if the suit was a feint to set the stage for negotiations or a separate suit to diminish the cancellation penalties or recover payments previously made. They basically got Boeing to state on the record that they didn't suffer clear financial harm due to the cancellation, because the frames were easily sold.

As for selling some of the remaining slots to Volga Dnepr, another possibility is simply that being out of contract means the pricing discussion can start over, and a 747-8F might be worth more now than back when incremental production slots could have been created. I could also well imagine UPS being prepared to pay a higher price than Volga Dnepr.
 
CX747
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 2:23 am

All info still has Boeing determining over the next 9-12 months on whether or not to continue production. IF UPS buys additional 747s, then that time frame could be pushed back even further.

I think several years back, Boeing purchased enough supplies from Triumph to cover production until the time came for them to make a decision. In that sense it was a "last call" for Triumph produced parts on the 747. It could even be that Triumph felt and leaked that a "last call" had occurred, not realizing Boeing wasn't ending 747 production, just ending Triumph's participation.

If there had been a "last call", then five 747 operators would not have written to Boeing asking about the program's position. Additionally, two further airlines in the last several months would not have reached out for new quotes. Either by themselves or through the grapevine, they would have learned of the program's closure.
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2175301
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 5:55 am

CX747 wrote:
All info still has Boeing determining over the next 9-12 months on whether or not to continue production. IF UPS buys additional 747s, then that time frame could be pushed back even further.

I think several years back, Boeing purchased enough supplies from Triumph to cover production until the time came for them to make a decision. In that sense it was a "last call" for Triumph produced parts on the 747. It could even be that Triumph felt and leaked that a "last call" had occurred, not realizing Boeing wasn't ending 747 production, just ending Triumph's participation.

If there had been a "last call", then five 747 operators would not have written to Boeing asking about the program's position. Additionally, two further airlines in the last several months would not have reached out for new quotes. Either by themselves or through the grapevine, they would have learned of the program's closure.


There is a difference between UPS and others taking the last 4-6 frames that can be built with the current parts from Triumph, and the necessary 20+ (likely 30+) orders beyond that to make it worthwhile for Boeing to set up a replacement for Triumph (even if they have the major tooling in storage).

I'd like to say differently; however, I just don't see that happening in the next 9 or so months.

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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 9:49 am

CX747 wrote:
All info still has Boeing determining over the next 9-12 months on whether or not to continue production. IF UPS buys additional 747s, then that time frame could be pushed back even further.

I think several years back, Boeing purchased enough supplies from Triumph to cover production until the time came for them to make a decision. In that sense it was a "last call" for Triumph produced parts on the 747. It could even be that Triumph felt and leaked that a "last call" had occurred, not realizing Boeing wasn't ending 747 production, just ending Triumph's participation.

If there had been a "last call", then five 747 operators would not have written to Boeing asking about the program's position. Additionally, two further airlines in the last several months would not have reached out for new quotes. Either by themselves or through the grapevine, they would have learned of the program's closure.


I don't think that would be realistic at all though. I mean, how much more frames for UPS to order for Boeing to keep the program alive? At this point they should just closed the productions and provide parts for airlines rather than continuing the program.

Maybe they should focused more on B777-8F?
 
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 2:00 pm

2175301 wrote:
There is a difference between UPS and others taking the last 4-6 frames that can be built with the current parts from Triumph, and the necessary 20+ (likely 30+) orders beyond that to make it worthwhile for Boeing to set up a replacement for Triumph (even if they have the major tooling in storage).

I'd like to say differently; however, I just don't see that happening in the next 9 or so months.

I agree.

If the spare parts for the six "extra" 748F really do exist, Boeing has to ask itself what to do, soon. If it doesn't build the spares as white tails the supply chain and FAL will shut down and they'll never get value from those parts. If they do build them as white tails they'll have a lot of full-valued aircraft on their books depreciating in the desert sun alongside the LH 748i NTU.

Press reports suggest Airbus is in a similar position with A380. They have all the parts for the remaining 5 that EK has ordered but now EK allegedly is trying to get out of those orders. Should they just finish them all at the risk of getting white tails? It's a bigger problem for Airbus since worldwide demand for new A380s is nil whereas with 748F we can project UPS and perhaps one of the other customers might eventually want them.
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 2:02 pm

There is an article up on Leeham discussing Boeing "potentially" moving forward the offering of the 777-8F design. This would overlap with a "potential" 747 line closure in 2023. Sheds additional light on the decisions Boeing management is chewing on.

It also meets with Boeing needing 20-30 747 orders to keep the line open. 30 orders is 5 years and would dovetail along the original 777-8F offering thought process. Time will tell....more 747s or 777-8F earlier?!?!?
"History does not long entrust the care of freedom to the weak or timid." D. Eisenhower
 
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 2:25 pm

CX747 wrote:
There is an article up on Leeham discussing Boeing "potentially" moving forward the offering of the 777-8F design. This would overlap with a "potential" 747 line closure in 2023. Sheds additional light on the decisions Boeing management is chewing on.

It also meets with Boeing needing 20-30 747 orders to keep the line open. 30 orders is 5 years and would dovetail along the original 777-8F offering thought process. Time will tell....more 747s or 777-8F earlier?!?!?

I'm on the "778F earlier" side. Boeing can't be making money at 0.5 frames per month on the 747 line. They would probably be better off closing the line sooner than later and repurposing the factory space and production workers. Think of how many MAXes you could store in the factory, lol!

Boeing was mumbling about a future freight bounce back when they took the UPS order, which was thought to be taken to keep the line ticking over at a slow rate till the boom happened. Well we now have the boom, but the beneficiary is mostly the 767 conversion and new market, with some bleed over to the 77F market.

The COVID19 crisis is showing passenger traffic down and a long slow recovery with a lot of the world under quarantine shifting their spending habits away from brick and mortar and towards e-commerce. This means the 77X needs to have a freighter sooner than later, IMO. Soon so they have it in the market before the 777 conversions become the only game in town for large freighters.
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 2:37 pm

Revelation wrote:
CX747 wrote:
There is an article up on Leeham discussing Boeing "potentially" moving forward the offering of the 777-8F design. This would overlap with a "potential" 747 line closure in 2023. Sheds additional light on the decisions Boeing management is chewing on.

It also meets with Boeing needing 20-30 747 orders to keep the line open. 30 orders is 5 years and would dovetail along the original 777-8F offering thought process. Time will tell....more 747s or 777-8F earlier?!?!?

I'm on the "778F earlier" side. Boeing can't be making money at 0.5 frames per month on the 747 line. They would probably be better off closing the line sooner than later and repurposing the factory space and production workers. Think of how many MAXes you could store in the factory, lol!

Boeing was mumbling about a future freight bounce back when they took the UPS order, which was thought to be taken to keep the line ticking over at a slow rate till the boom happened. Well we now have the boom, but the beneficiary is mostly the 767 conversion and new market, with some bleed over to the 77F market.

The COVID19 crisis is showing passenger traffic down and a long slow recovery with a lot of the world under quarantine shifting their spending habits away from brick and mortar and towards e-commerce. This means the 77X needs to have a freighter sooner than later, IMO. Soon so they have it in the market before the 777 conversions become the only game in town for large freighters.

At 0.5 per month, how could there be a discussion? End the 747 and sustain the 777x with a 777xF.

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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 2:48 pm

Is the 778F value proposition superior enough relative to the 77F to justify the cost? Fuel economy goes up, maybe substantially, but payload goes down. Certainly intercontinental services not requiring 748F payloads will benefit, but how many planes does that represent?
 
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 2:57 pm

lightsaber wrote:
Revelation wrote:
CX747 wrote:
There is an article up on Leeham discussing Boeing "potentially" moving forward the offering of the 777-8F design. This would overlap with a "potential" 747 line closure in 2023. Sheds additional light on the decisions Boeing management is chewing on.

It also meets with Boeing needing 20-30 747 orders to keep the line open. 30 orders is 5 years and would dovetail along the original 777-8F offering thought process. Time will tell....more 747s or 777-8F earlier?!?!?

I'm on the "778F earlier" side. Boeing can't be making money at 0.5 frames per month on the 747 line. They would probably be better off closing the line sooner than later and repurposing the factory space and production workers. Think of how many MAXes you could store in the factory, lol!

Boeing was mumbling about a future freight bounce back when they took the UPS order, which was thought to be taken to keep the line ticking over at a slow rate till the boom happened. Well we now have the boom, but the beneficiary is mostly the 767 conversion and new market, with some bleed over to the 77F market.

The COVID19 crisis is showing passenger traffic down and a long slow recovery with a lot of the world under quarantine shifting their spending habits away from brick and mortar and towards e-commerce. This means the 77X needs to have a freighter sooner than later, IMO. Soon so they have it in the market before the 777 conversions become the only game in town for large freighters.

At 0.5 per month, how could there be a discussion? End the 747 and sustain the 777x with a 777xF.

Lightsaber


Completely agree, the 777XF is the "future". Question is, how much does that "future" cost at the moment? Can Boeing afford to bring the 777XF to market at this point? Do they want to push it down the road a little and sell another 20-30 747s? The "keep" the 747 line open may cost 10% of the 777XF. Does the company want that type of expenditure on the books right now?

I believe the strong move is to bring the 777XF to market now. Don't sit back but move forward. The new 777XF is the future and it's rising sun begins a market offering of 15-20 years. Capture the now booming freight market. Lock in FEDEX, UPS, Cargolux and Atlas. This also puts the "new" product in play with the 77W conversion program. IF the conversion program is jamming along 5 years from now, you could have a position where a new freighter doesn't make any sense.
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 2:58 pm

flyPIT wrote:
I'm not sure why so many people are saying production is dead when it clearly is not. The article even said “We are continuing to build 747-8s to meet the backlog of orders for the airplane and will continue to make the right decisions to keep the production line healthy". Furthermore, just because Flight Global stated that airlines' continued interest did not elicit a response from Boeing, are we to believe Boeing is seriously not discussing this with customers, many of which are also customers for Boeing's other models?

This isn't cut and dry. Let's say UPS goes to Boeing (if they haven't already) and states "We want 20 767s and 10 748s or we can be launch customer for the A330NEO with an order for 30". Don't you think that can have a major impact on Boeing's plans?

You'd know if you bothered to read the thread. Production for major parts has ceased and the ones they have in stock are almost all (except for maybe one) assigned to existing orders. It's not a "plan". It's already happened. You're not going to replace Triumph by taking tooling out of storage and pushing the start button. It would take a lot of orders, and soon, to make it worthwhile.

The important thing is that the last 748 comes off the line after the last 380, because some self professed expert made me a thousand to one bet three years ago that couldn't possibly happen.
 
889091
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 3:17 pm

jagraham wrote:
SteelChair wrote:
CX747 wrote:

Crazy indeed. Similar thing in the USN. F-14 gets retired, the Super Hornet can do everything. Now we are throwing billions at trying to get the Tomcat replacement to actually do what it's predecessor did!!!!


Like sitting broken on the deck?

Before we get back on topic, let's agree that the F14 was unreliable, complex and expensive, dangerous, and lacked modern avionics. And much of its job was taken over by the AEGIS equipped destroyers and cruisers


The An/APG 73 and AN/APG 79, together with the AIM120C, gave the F18E the ability to do what the F14 did. With greater reliability and less cost. As for the F14, it's incredible what it did considering it's a 1960s design. Only the TF30 engines were a true disappointment. Of course if you didn't like the F14, you could go back to the F111B. Or maybe the F4?


The Hornet may have gotten the job done, but the F14 is still one.bad.ass.looking.plane!

Back on topic.

The question was asked further upthread, but after a few "uuumhs" and "aaaahs", no one could conclusively say that the 748F will be compliant with the new ICAO emissions standard which kicks-in in 2028. So, is it or is it not?
 
workhorse
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 3:19 pm

Stitch wrote:
That the court straight-up dismissed all of Volga-Dnepr's claims might very well be that Volga-Depnr's claims of "having the money" was more a "conditional agreement" with a lender that still needed to be firmed up. Or maybe Volga-Dnepr was trying to secure delivery while still owing money ("we still owe you $35 million on this 747-8F, but we have $20 million we can give you now to take delivery and we'll get you the rest in 90 days"). If they took delivery and then defaulted on the remainder, Boeing has to go to court to get an impound order and then secure the frame (assuming it is in a country Boeing can do so) and they might have considered said "default risk" too high - especially when UPS was ready to do a wire-transfer for the full amount agreed upon to take the frame off Boeing's hands.


For the already built frame, sure. For the remaining 6 frames, either we will see an order (from UPS or whoever else) soon enough or it's going to get really weird: there are customers publicly saying they want these frames, there are parts stored in a warehouse somewhere and yet nothing happens. If it comes to that, it will become clear that someone (Volga-Dnepr or Boeing) is bluffing.
 
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 3:30 pm

jagraham wrote:
Is the 778F value proposition superior enough relative to the 77F to justify the cost? Fuel economy goes up, maybe substantially, but payload goes down. Certainly intercontinental services not requiring 748F payloads will benefit, but how many planes does that represent?

There are so many variables. Is Boeing really still going to make the pax 778? If so they have more constraints on the freighter than not. From what I've read the new wing is bigger and longer and more efficient and not heavier due to better materials. Thrust is lower because the wing is more efficient. Engines are heavier but that's because they are bigger and more efficient. If customers really treasure absolute payload they could return to 772F size.

Another cost is maintenance. It'd be interesting to see how customers are doing with the 767 conversions. Are they as reliable enough? Or does the data indicate to a "blue chip" such as FX or 5X that their trend towards buying factory new avoids a lot of down time arising from maintenance problems? Both are running a lot of 90s vintage MD11s. Are they OK with maintaining aging widebodies going forward, or does it make sense to buy new?
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 3:56 pm

889091 wrote:
Back on topic.

The question was asked further upthread, but after a few "uuumhs" and "aaaahs", no one could conclusively say that the 748F will be compliant with the new ICAO emissions standard which kicks-in in 2028. So, is it or is it not?

This publication from 2016 suggest it won't be compliant, but it only lists the 748I and not the freighter.

https://theicct.org/sites/default/files ... eb2016.pdf (pdf)

But if the same rules apply to the 747-8F then it won't make a difference,

There's not too much other 747-8F specific info to be found on the internet on this subject. But other articles from 2016 also suggest that the 747 would not comply.
 
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 4:51 pm

I wonder how cost effective it would be to convert the passenger Korean and Lufthansa 747-8's to nose loading freighters?

I suspect both Korean and Lufthansa wont require them for passenger service for much longer, that will be around 35 fairly new frames looking for a home.
Looking at the nose of the 747-8 there appears to be a frame around where the nose opening would be on a freighter https://flic.kr/p/2jaE1x2

It will come down to economics, no doubt there will be other issues around the structure and cargo floor that would need work.
 
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 7:03 pm

flyingphil wrote:
I wonder how cost effective it would be to convert the passenger Korean and Lufthansa 747-8's to nose loading freighters?

I suspect both Korean and Lufthansa wont require them for passenger service for much longer, that will be around 35 fairly new frames looking for a home.
Looking at the nose of the 747-8 there appears to be a frame around where the nose opening would be on a freighter https://flic.kr/p/2jaE1x2

It will come down to economics, no doubt there will be other issues around the structure and cargo floor that would need work.


This was discussed further back in the thread. It's a much bigger rebuild to do the nose gate and it basically doesn't work with the longer upper deck of the pax -400 and -8. That's why none of the aftermarket 744 freighter conversions have a nose gate. I also don't see LH getting rid of the 748 anytime soon. With 744, A346, and A380 basically gone and 777X delayed, there is no other aircraft that offers this capacity, which they do need on some of their key longhaul routes. In addition, they will want to hang on to some of these owned, unencumbered, newer high value assets to use as collateral to raise cash in the present situation.
 
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 7:05 pm

Revelation wrote:
CX747 wrote:
There is an article up on Leeham discussing Boeing "potentially" moving forward the offering of the 777-8F design. This would overlap with a "potential" 747 line closure in 2023. Sheds additional light on the decisions Boeing management is chewing on.

It also meets with Boeing needing 20-30 747 orders to keep the line open. 30 orders is 5 years and would dovetail along the original 777-8F offering thought process. Time will tell....more 747s or 777-8F earlier?!?!?

I'm on the "778F earlier" side. Boeing can't be making money at 0.5 frames per month on the 747 line. They would probably be better off closing the line sooner than later and repurposing the factory space and production workers. Think of how many MAXes you could store in the factory, lol!

Boeing was mumbling about a future freight bounce back when they took the UPS order, which was thought to be taken to keep the line ticking over at a slow rate till the boom happened. Well we now have the boom, but the beneficiary is mostly the 767 conversion and new market, with some bleed over to the 77F market.

The COVID19 crisis is showing passenger traffic down and a long slow recovery with a lot of the world under quarantine shifting their spending habits away from brick and mortar and towards e-commerce. This means the 77X needs to have a freighter sooner than later, IMO. Soon so they have it in the market before the 777 conversions become the only game in town for large freighters.


But with pax traffic in a slump for years to come and orders deferred, what do they really need the factory space for that would be freed up by closing the 747 line? I don't really see that as a compelling argument. I think Boeing will have excess capacity for the next few years even with the 747 line open.
 
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 7:27 pm

DUSdude wrote:
But with pax traffic in a slump for years to come and orders deferred, what do they really need the factory space for that would be freed up by closing the 747 line? I don't really see that as a compelling argument. I think Boeing will have excess capacity for the next few years even with the 747 line open.

I'm not sure what is next for Boeing. As above I doubt they are making money building 748Fs at 0.5 per month. The UPS order was mainly a kick the can down the road thing designed to buy time hoping someone else would buy 748Fs, but that doesn't seem to be in the cards. Chances are they save money by not making them, plus get tax benefits from getting rid of all the 747 related tooling.
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 7:40 pm

Stitch wrote:
So here is an interesting wrinkle...

As many of us expected, UPS agreed to take the Volga-Dnepr NTU 747-8F (currently in ABC Cargo colors) and the frame is now at PDX to be re-painted in UPS colors.

However, Boeing agreed to count this frame as one of the 13 UPS had remaining in their backlog, which means UPS will now be taking one less new-build freighter then they had on contract.

So this means that Boeing could have one "open" production slot for a new-build 747-8F it can sell. And if it has the ability to produce the three other Volga-Dnepr NTU 747-8Fs that have not yet entered production, they could have up to four new production slots available.

When the Volga-Dnepr contract wrangling hit the news, there was rumors that UPS would not only take the ABC Cargo livery frame already built, but also the other three they Volga-Dnepr were contracted to take and then order up to three more on top of that. I'm on record as believing that Boeing probably did not source the parts to make those three remaining Volga-Dnepr frames, but perhaps they did and that is where the rumors of UPS taking at least four new frames came from (as in they would take all four frames previously planned for Volga-Dnepr).

So could UPS eventually have a fleet of 32 747-8F (the 28 they ordered plus the four Volga-Dnepr NTUs)? And can Boeing actually make more beyond the 16 they in-theory have firm/cancelled orders for?


I think this would be a very wise move for UPS. Even when freight demand starts to drop off after 2-3 years of Covid Recover a carrier with 32 fresh front loading large frames will be in a position to command dominant rates for that capability. UPS carries much heavier loads on average than say, FDX from my observations. FDX seems to routinely overfly ANC while UPS stops for fuel there every time.

Looking forward to a 32 748F UPS Fleet. :checkeredflag:
To know your Enemy, you must become your Enemy.” Sun Tzu
 
ILNFlyer
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 7:49 pm

Very sad to see the line go, but that's business. If they are not making money on the frames, they have to close the line. I too believe we will see the emergence of the 777x-F
 
744SPX
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 10:26 pm

Revelation wrote:
There are so many variables. Is Boeing really still going to make the pax 778? If so they have more constraints on the freighter than not. From what I've read the new wing is bigger and longer and more efficient and not heavier due to better materials. Thrust is lower because the wing is more efficient. Engines are heavier but that's because they are bigger and more efficient. If customers really treasure absolute payload they could return to 772F size.


I've maintained all along that the 778 should be 772 size. It would be far better for project sunrise and for absolute payload in a freighter version. The current closer-to-773-than-772 length is too much of a compromise, especially considering the best markets for the 778 will be ULH and freighter.
 
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Stitch
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Re: ​Internal tussle as Boeing weighs future of 747

Wed Jun 10, 2020 11:06 pm

744SPX wrote:
I've maintained all along that the 778 should be 772 size. It would be far better for project sunrise and for absolute payload in a freighter version. The current closer-to-773-than-772 length is too much of a compromise, especially considering the best markets for the 778 will be ULH and freighter.


It was almost assuredly made the size it was because the ME3 wanted near-777-300ER capacity with near-777-200LR range.

Frankly, a 777-8 that was the same length as the 777-200 family would be DOA against the 280,000kg A350-900, which would offer similar usable capacity and much lower OEW.
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