Moderators: jsumali2, richierich, ua900, PanAm_DC10, hOMSaR

 
Sokes
Topic Author
Posts: 2113
Joined: Sat Mar 09, 2019 4:48 pm

Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 10:00 am

I know it sold well.
However Airbus sold A330-300s while Boeing sold B787-8s.
I wonder if Boeing should have early focused on the -9, leaving the -8 business to A330-200.
Why can't the world be a little bit more autistic?
 
Noshow
Posts: 1778
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2016 3:20 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 10:04 am

Only with the -9 Boeing got it right finally. AFAIK today's -8 is a shortened -9. What is really different from their plans is that the short range model -3 is almost forgotten about today. It could cover much of that famous NMA market but seems to be too expensive to build? A custom short range wing could have brought it back into the game. However they preferred to close one final assembly.
 
VSMUT
Posts: 4677
Joined: Mon Aug 08, 2016 11:40 am

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 10:35 am

No, it was a great success. It isn't just the 422 orders that the 787-8 got directly. Lots of customers that started out with the 787-8 eventually expanded with 787-9s. Following airlines started out with the 787-8, only expanding with the -9 later on. There is no guarantee that they would have gone for the 787-9 if that was the smallest version on offer:

Qatar Airways - 30x 787-8 and 30x 787-9
LOT - 8x 787-8 and 9x 787-9
Ethiopian Airlines - 19x 787-8 and 10x 787-9
Avianca - 13x 787-8 and 8x 787-9
All the TUI airlines - 13x 787-8 and 8x 787-9
Norwegian - 8x 787-8 and 29x 787-9
Biman Bangladesh - 4x 787-8 and 2x 787-9

Then you'd also have lost a number of airlines that needed a smaller type and couldn't justify 2 types. Who's to say BA would not have gone for a mix of A330-200s and -300s if Boeing didn't offer the 787-8? For all we know, they actually need the smaller type. There are lots of airlines where that could have been the case, like United, American Airlines, JAL, ANA, Singapore Airlines/Scoot, Qantas group etc. That would have impacted even the 787-10.
 
LAXLHR
Posts: 456
Joined: Sat Dec 03, 2016 10:07 am

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 10:44 am

VSMUT answered the question perfectly. Nothing left to be said. It WAS and is a success!
BA IB ET JM EA GK PA VS AA SN HP CO W7 WN NW DL UA AC US LH LX OS JL QF QR WY MH CX U2 EK 9W UK TP VY VN LO OK OZ UL SQ LA

707 727 L10 732-NG 741 742 743 744 752 753 762 763 772 773 787 DC8 DC9 DC10 M80 M11 100 AB3 310 318 319 320 321 330s 340s 350 380
 
LH982
Posts: 175
Joined: Wed Aug 30, 2017 3:28 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 10:47 am

It's the 762 of its day. Never going to set the world on fire, but useful to have for many operators. It has sold well, and blocked off a lot of potential business for Airbus.
 
cedarjet
Posts: 8847
Joined: Mon May 24, 1999 1:12 am

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 10:49 am

I understand the premise of the OP but agree there probably is a genuine niche for the -8, from my experience of flying on the 787-8 on BA flights eg Seoul and Toronto, neither of these routes require a first class product, and are quite thin at certain times of the year, so an efficient jet carrying just 35J and 179Y* is probably perfect, every seat filled profitably even on a Tuesday in February

* 154 World Traveller and 25 World Traveller Plus
fly Saha Air 707s daily from Tehran's downtown Mehrabad to Mashhad, Kish Island and Ahwaz
 
User avatar
Momo1435
Posts: 1174
Joined: Sat Aug 25, 2012 2:33 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 10:55 am

The -8 was the result of the result of the original planned role of the 787 as a 767 replacement. With 8-abreast seating the -8 would in capacity be very close to a 767-300, but with much more range and cargo volume. The role of the 787 has changed of course, mainly because it became a 9-abreast plane, clearly a step above the 767.

Obviously the biggest mistakes Boeing were not so much the specific versions, completely messing up the early production had a much bigger impact on the 787 program and the company as a whole. In hindsight you could indeed argue that they should focused earlier on 787-9, but obviously they did not plan that the program would be delayed so much. Therefor the planning for the 787-9 was also pushed backwards and would have launched much earlier. Because of the delays it was probably deemed to risky and expensive to change everything again and focus more on the 787-9 (and -10) instead. That decision came only after the customers showed that they were much more interested in the current 787-9.

Maybe you could say that their mistake was that they did not see the 787 as the replacement for 777-200. But obviously the 777-200ER was still selling when the 787 was launched, it was the 767 that took the most hits from the competition, the A330.

I think the 787 is a good example of a large project that became a victim of changed market during it's development years, especially with all the delays. At the end of the day Boeing did get it right though with the 787-9. It's not been for nothing that this was the best selling single model of any wide-body plane in recent time.
 
T54A
Posts: 292
Joined: Mon Oct 19, 2015 11:47 am

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 11:06 am

Other than obvious things like length, thrust and weight, what are the differences between the -8 & -9?
T6, Allouette 3, Oryx, King Air, B1900, B727, B744, A319, A342/3/6 A332/3 A359
 
Noshow
Posts: 1778
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2016 3:20 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 11:08 am

Momo, very good post.
 
Boof02671
Posts: 2269
Joined: Sun Jul 10, 2016 12:15 am

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 12:02 pm

American Airlines has 22 787-8s with more on order
 
User avatar
PatrickZ80
Posts: 4322
Joined: Tue Jul 13, 2010 5:33 am

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 12:02 pm

Sokes wrote:
However Airbus sold A330-300s while Boeing sold B787-8s.


That's not really true, the A330 is a much older design than the 787. The A330 entered service in 1994, the 787 in 2011. That's a 17 year gap!

Initially the A330-200 competed against the 767-300/400 and the A330-300 competed against the 777-200(LR/ER). There was no mentioning of a 787 at the time.

When it was time for Boeing to replace the 767, they looked at what made the A330 so successful. Basically the A330-200 was one size up from the 767, with a slightly wider fuselage accommodating more passengers. So they developed the 787 with more or less the same fuselage width. Initially only the 787-8, which was designed to compete with the A330-200. The 787-9 is a stretched 787-8 designed to compete with the A330-300.

And it was a success. The old A330 design couldn't compete with the new 787, which was way more efficient. That's what caused Airbus to upgrade the A330 to the A330neo, which is the A330-800 and 900. Those are the true competitors to the 787-8 and 9.
 
User avatar
LAX772LR
Posts: 13334
Joined: Sun Nov 09, 2014 11:06 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 12:15 pm

T54A wrote:
Other than obvious things like length, thrust and weight, what are the differences between the -8 & -9?

That depends on when you're asking, or more accurately, when the 788 in question was constructed.

As noted in the thread's second post: today's 788 has significantly higher commonality with the 789 than previously, especially in the parts behind the wing area.

Early 788s were quite different:
  • Early 788 horizontal stabilizer was a 3 component construct, instead of the current 2 used in all 789s/78Xs and new 788s
  • Lacked the hybrid laminar-flow control system on the leading edges of both rear stabilizers
  • Different environmental control system
  • Lacked the 789's redesigned and lightened section 41 (area immediately behind the cockpit)
  • Lacks the 789s weight reduction in the area immediately above the strengthened wingbox
  • Lacked the 789's revised vent stringer design
  • Shorter trucks on its landing gear, to incorporate smaller tires and different brakes
  • Fewer flap settings than would be available on the 789
  • etc

All of this of course, in addition to the obvious lengthening, wing box strengthening, higher thrust, larger tires/brakes, and higher MTOW available on the 789.
I myself, suspect a more prosaic motive... ~Thranduil
 
User avatar
747classic
Posts: 3327
Joined: Sat Aug 15, 2009 9:13 am

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 12:25 pm

VSMUT wrote:
No, it was a great success. It isn't just the 422 orders that the 787-8 got directly. Lots of customers that started out with the 787-8 eventually expanded with 787-9s. Following airlines started out with the 787-8, only expanding with the -9 later on. There is no guarantee that they would have gone for the 787-9 if that was the smallest version on offer:

Qatar Airways - 30x 787-8 and 30x 787-9
LOT - 8x 787-8 and 9x 787-9
Ethiopian Airlines - 19x 787-8 and 10x 787-9
Avianca - 13x 787-8 and 8x 787-9
All the TUI airlines - 13x 787-8 and 8x 787-9
Norwegian - 8x 787-8 and 29x 787-9
Biman Bangladesh - 4x 787-8 and 2x 787-9

Then you'd also have lost a number of airlines that needed a smaller type and couldn't justify 2 types. Who's to say BA would not have gone for a mix of A330-200s and -300s if Boeing didn't offer the 787-8? For all we know, they actually need the smaller type. There are lots of airlines where that could have been the case, like United, American Airlines, JAL, ANA, Singapore Airlines/Scoot, Qantas group etc. That would have impacted even the 787-10.


The problem with a combination fleet of 787-8 and 787-9 aircraft is the spares commonality, only 30% of the spares are common.
The spare parts commonality between the 787-9 and -10 is 95%.
Boeing is already trying to lower the high production cost of the 787-8, see : https://leehamnews.com/2020/09/01/34422/
This has also been discussed here : viewtopic.php?t=1451193
Operating a twin over the ocean, you're always one engine failure from a total emergency.
 
User avatar
Polot
Posts: 10869
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2011 3:01 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 12:35 pm

747classic wrote:
VSMUT wrote:
No, it was a great success. It isn't just the 422 orders that the 787-8 got directly. Lots of customers that started out with the 787-8 eventually expanded with 787-9s. Following airlines started out with the 787-8, only expanding with the -9 later on. There is no guarantee that they would have gone for the 787-9 if that was the smallest version on offer:

Qatar Airways - 30x 787-8 and 30x 787-9
LOT - 8x 787-8 and 9x 787-9
Ethiopian Airlines - 19x 787-8 and 10x 787-9
Avianca - 13x 787-8 and 8x 787-9
All the TUI airlines - 13x 787-8 and 8x 787-9
Norwegian - 8x 787-8 and 29x 787-9
Biman Bangladesh - 4x 787-8 and 2x 787-9

Then you'd also have lost a number of airlines that needed a smaller type and couldn't justify 2 types. Who's to say BA would not have gone for a mix of A330-200s and -300s if Boeing didn't offer the 787-8? For all we know, they actually need the smaller type. There are lots of airlines where that could have been the case, like United, American Airlines, JAL, ANA, Singapore Airlines/Scoot, Qantas group etc. That would have impacted even the 787-10.


The problem with a combination fleet of 787-8 and 787-9 aircraft is the spares commonality, only 30% of the spares are common.
The spare parts commonality between the 787-9 and -10 is 95%.
Boeing is already trying to lower the high production cost of the 787-8, see : https://leehamnews.com/2020/09/01/34422/
This has also been discussed here : viewtopic.php?t=1451193

That’s production commonality, which is different from spare parts commonality. Having different tails, for example, is a production difference that raises cost for Boeing, but not as big of a deal for airlines because they are not routinely changing their 787’s tail and keeping spare ones in their inventory.
 
VSMUT
Posts: 4677
Joined: Mon Aug 08, 2016 11:40 am

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 12:44 pm

747classic wrote:
VSMUT wrote:
No, it was a great success. It isn't just the 422 orders that the 787-8 got directly. Lots of customers that started out with the 787-8 eventually expanded with 787-9s. Following airlines started out with the 787-8, only expanding with the -9 later on. There is no guarantee that they would have gone for the 787-9 if that was the smallest version on offer:

Qatar Airways - 30x 787-8 and 30x 787-9
LOT - 8x 787-8 and 9x 787-9
Ethiopian Airlines - 19x 787-8 and 10x 787-9
Avianca - 13x 787-8 and 8x 787-9
All the TUI airlines - 13x 787-8 and 8x 787-9
Norwegian - 8x 787-8 and 29x 787-9
Biman Bangladesh - 4x 787-8 and 2x 787-9

Then you'd also have lost a number of airlines that needed a smaller type and couldn't justify 2 types. Who's to say BA would not have gone for a mix of A330-200s and -300s if Boeing didn't offer the 787-8? For all we know, they actually need the smaller type. There are lots of airlines where that could have been the case, like United, American Airlines, JAL, ANA, Singapore Airlines/Scoot, Qantas group etc. That would have impacted even the 787-10.


The problem with a combination fleet of 787-8 and 787-9 aircraft is the spares commonality, only 30% of the spares are common.
The spare parts commonality between the 787-9 and -10 is 95%.
Boeing is already trying to lower the high production cost of the 787-8, see : https://leehamnews.com/2020/09/01/34422/
This has also been discussed here : viewtopic.php?t=1451193


As opposed to, say, a fleet made up of the A330-200 and 787-9? ;)

Even with all those differences, there are still massive savings to find. You can run the same pool of pilots across the entire fleet, not so easy if you run the A330 and 787 in parallel. I'm pretty sure maintenance is much easier and simplified if you stick to one type, even with all those differences. Onboard product is kept consistent.
 
jfk777
Posts: 7387
Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2006 7:23 am

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 12:50 pm

Many early 787-8 operators fly them because that was the plane Boeing made first and they wanted the 787 NOW, not later. If it was too small they didn't care, when the 787-9 arrived many -8 orders were flipped to the -9. The 787-9 became the standard Dreamliner with the -8 becoming a niche machine for smaller routes and 767 replacements.
 
thepinkmachine
Posts: 430
Joined: Tue Apr 28, 2015 4:43 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 1:09 pm

My company operates a mix of -8's and -9's and they seem to be happy about the -8.

Of course, the -9 is the sweet spot and all the new airframes (and possible future deliveries if we survive the COVID crisis) are -9's, but the -8 has its advantages as well:
- its DOW is some 10 tonnes lighter and the fuel burn for a given payload is slightly lower (on order of 3-4%)
- it still has a heckload of range, enabling to fly form Europe to anywhere in the world, except maybe Australia and NZ
- on the very edge of the payload-range (ie. when fuel-limited) it can actually take more payload than the -9 (this is academic only, because no one does 8500Nm sectors with ~90 pax on board - but with low payload the -8 can actually fly slightly farther than the 9)
- it still can take a lot of cargo
- it can go to some airports where the -9 can't go (eg. it can do a 180 turn on a 45m runway, whereas the -9 can't, requires a lower RFFS category, etc.)

In the current climate, with low loads, when the extra capacity of the -9 is not needed, the -8 is probably cheaper to operate...
"Tell my wife I am trawling Atlantis - and I still have my hands on the wheel…"
 
MileHFL400
Posts: 790
Joined: Sat Dec 05, 2015 11:42 am

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 1:43 pm

I think the -8 was a good starting point in to the 787 family for many operators where the -9 is too much plane.

I can take the example of airlines in my part of the world such as Kenya airways where they don’t need a larger plane for the NBO to JFK route etc.

Also in light of the pandemic and lower pax numbers where a lot of airlines probably feel that their larger aircraft have too much capacity and the higher flight cost attached to that. I believe the -8 really came in to its own with Qatar Airways during this period.

Furthermore I bet that we ll see more orders for the type going forward from airlines looking to replace A330-300’s etc. It could still be a while before demand picks up again so why buy a larger aircraft when there is no guarantee that they will be filled when the -8 is available with low trip costs?
Thanks and best Regards
AA
 
Sokes
Topic Author
Posts: 2113
Joined: Sat Mar 09, 2019 4:48 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 2:01 pm

From 1997 till 2007 a lot of B777-200ER were delivered, from 2004 B777-300ER were delivered.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boeing_777

B787 were delivered in quantity from 2012, from 2016 mostly -9s.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boeing_787_Dreamliner

I believe Boeing didn't want to sell the -9 as it would have competed with the B777-300ER.
The -8 competed with the A330-200.
Wise choice?
That's what deferred production cost makes me wonder.
Can a -8 be sold profitable with the A330-200 as competitor?
Why can't the world be a little bit more autistic?
 
User avatar
Polot
Posts: 10869
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2011 3:01 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 2:30 pm

Sokes wrote:
From 1997 till 2007 a lot of B777-200ER were delivered, from 2004 B777-300ER were delivered.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boeing_777

B787 were delivered in quantity from 2012, from 2016 mostly -9s.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boeing_787_Dreamliner

I believe Boeing didn't want to sell the -9 as it would have competed with the B777-300ER.
The -8 competed with the A330-200.
Wise choice?
That's what deferred production cost makes me wonder.
Can a -8 be sold profitable with the A330-200 as competitor?

The -9 does not compete that much with the 777-300ER. They are not even close in size. 787-9s were in fact sold to complement the 77Ws on order/in fleet.

The -9 only entered service in summer 2014, and like all new variants of any aircraft there is initial limited availability as production slots for the new variant is limited some to take into account any issues or delays that may occur.
Last edited by Polot on Sat Nov 21, 2020 2:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
Tkt96
Posts: 37
Joined: Sat Dec 12, 2015 9:07 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 2:34 pm

Boeing needs to do a "Cabin Flex" on the 787-8 like airbus did on the 321 and reconfigure/remove some doors. 8 main cabin doors eats up way to much floor space on a plane as small as the -8 in low density configurations that legacy airlines use. Just seems like there could be some optimization in that area.
 
Noshow
Posts: 1778
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2016 3:20 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 2:35 pm

Boeing was on the record back then to sell a new 787-8 for not more than a maxed out 767(-300ER). I seem to remember some 767 list price back then of up to 146 Mio. Dollars?
The 787 can't have been so profitable at that price given the cost overruns they had and all the new technology installed.

Airbus kept the pressure by continuing their old and cheap A330ceo and developing the newer A330neo and A350... ruining the A380 in the process.
 
User avatar
Polot
Posts: 10869
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2011 3:01 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 2:43 pm

Tkt96 wrote:
Boeing needs to do a "Cabin Flex" on the 787-8 like airbus did on the 321 and reconfigure/remove some doors. 8 main cabin doors eats up way to much floor space on a plane as small as the -8 in low density configurations that legacy airlines use. Just seems like there could be some optimization in that area.

I don’t think there is much room for flexibility there. I believe the distance between the front door and any overwing exit Boeing could add is greater than regulations allow, ditto between the rear exits and any over wing exits. So Boeing would still need the current L/R 2 and 3 exits. The A332 has the same door layout.
 
MIflyer12
Posts: 8486
Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2013 11:58 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 2:44 pm

747classic wrote:
The problem with a combination fleet of 787-8 and 787-9 aircraft is the spares commonality, only 30% of the spares are common.
The spare parts commonality between the 787-9 and -10 is 95%.


Are you saying that only 30% of the regular use spares are common, or more like only 30% of the original assembly parts are common? That would be a very big difference in parts inventory.

As to the OP's question, think:

737 -700, -800, -900

A319, A320, A321 (let's forget about A318s and 767-600s - those were shrinks too far, in bids to maintain commonality)

A350 -900, -1000

A330 -200, -300

FAMILIES!

A type family maintains pilot commonality and significant parts commonality. Those things have value. Observe that Southwest, Ryanair, and Spirit have large (ish) fleets but single types.
 
Noshow
Posts: 1778
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2016 3:20 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 2:53 pm

The 787-10 was quite a smart surprise move. A bit like some supersized 787-3. Super efficient if you can fill it.
 
Sokes
Topic Author
Posts: 2113
Joined: Sat Mar 09, 2019 4:48 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 3:12 pm

Polot wrote:
The -9 does not compete that much with the 777-300ER. They are not even close in size. 787-9s were in fact sold to complement the 77Ws on order/in fleet.

We're they sold to be delivered the same year?

The B777-300ER doesn't compete in size, but in range. I believe that is what matters for city pairs.
Why can't the world be a little bit more autistic?
 
User avatar
Polot
Posts: 10869
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2011 3:01 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 3:17 pm

Sokes wrote:
Polot wrote:
The -9 does not compete that much with the 777-300ER. They are not even close in size. 787-9s were in fact sold to complement the 77Ws on order/in fleet.

We're they sold to be delivered the same year?

The B777-300ER doesn't compete in size, but in range. I believe that is what matters for city pairs.

It doesn’t matter if they were to be delivered the same year. Nobody was ever planning on dumping new 77Ws for brand new 789s a few years later. Some airlines like UA ordered the 77W after they already had 789s on order (and I think in fleet?).

Size definitely matters, it’s not just about range. Not every city pair can support airplanes the size of 77Ws. If it was only about range the A380 would have sold like gangbusters.
 
carlokiii
Posts: 188
Joined: Sun Oct 04, 2015 11:03 am

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 4:05 pm

Sokes wrote:
We're they sold to be delivered the same year?

The B777-300ER doesn't compete in size, but in range. I believe that is what matters for city pairs.


I don't quite understand what conclusion you're trying to point to here... size is far and away what matters most for city pairs. I can't remember a single operator who needed a 77W plane, but bought a 789 instead.
 
Tkt96
Posts: 37
Joined: Sat Dec 12, 2015 9:07 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 4:12 pm

Polot wrote:
I don’t think there is much room for flexibility there. I believe the distance between the front door and any overwing exit Boeing could add is greater than regulations allow, ditto between the rear exits and any over wing exits. So Boeing would still need the current L/R 2 and 3 exits. The A332 has the same door layout.


It took a while for me to find but on a 787-8 the distance from door 1 to door 4 is 122ft. I believe emergency exit doors can't be more than 60ft apart. Assuming they could put a pair of over wing exits exactly in the middle (might not be possible) I wonder if it would be possible to match the 767-300 exit configuration of 4 main cabin doors and 4 over wing exits. The configuration works well on the 767-300 to maximize usable floor space.
 
User avatar
ElroyJetson
Posts: 849
Joined: Fri May 26, 2017 5:04 am

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 4:34 pm

One factor not mentioned is the 788 has been an efficient and excellent plane to open up new city pairs due to its range and low operating cost. LHR-BNA Or LHR-CHS among other examples comes to mind.

Also, as has been mentioned I have seen the 788 used on off peak days TATL when higher capacity is not needed as airlines can benefit from lower operating costs.
707 717 727 72S 737 733 737-700 747 757 753 767-300 764 A319 A320 DC-9-10 DC-9-30 DC-9-50, MD-82 MD-88 MD-90 DC-10-10 DC-10-40 F-100
 
User avatar
flyingclrs727
Posts: 2648
Joined: Thu Apr 19, 2007 7:44 am

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 5:29 pm

Well if it were a mistake, why did AA order a whole bunch of 787-8's as 767 replacements just two and a half years ago? These aren't the old build 787-8 that had low commonality with the 787-9. They are the rationalized 787-8 that incorporate the improvements developed for the 787-9. This lowers the cost to Boeing to build them, and makes it a viable replacement for the 767 but with considerably longer range. As Boeing has no MOM to even offer to customers, the 787-8 is the only plane Boeing has to offer between the size of the 737-10 and the 787-9.

https://thepointsguy.com/news/aa-confirms-dreamliner-order-cancels-a350
 
Sokes
Topic Author
Posts: 2113
Joined: Sat Mar 09, 2019 4:48 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 6:56 pm

flyingclrs727 wrote:
Well if it were a mistake, why did AA order a whole bunch of 787-8's as 767 replacements just two and a half years ago?
...
https://thepointsguy.com/news/aa-confirms-dreamliner-order-cancels-a350

Good point, specially since it's an April 2018 order.
Why can't the world be a little bit more autistic?
 
Opus99
Posts: 1136
Joined: Thu May 30, 2019 10:51 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 7:29 pm

Yup. Also do take note that BA switched 4 787-9s to -8 which took their original order from 8 to 12 -8s. So the -8 is a good proposition. It’s not the most popular proposition but it’s a good one. Not every variant can be the ONE like the -9 but it’s a good low risk airplane.
 
Antarius
Posts: 2715
Joined: Thu Apr 13, 2017 1:27 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 8:08 pm

flyingclrs727 wrote:
Well if it were a mistake, why did AA order a whole bunch of 787-8's as 767 replacements just two and a half years ago? These aren't the old build 787-8 that had low commonality with the 787-9. They are the rationalized 787-8 that incorporate the improvements developed for the 787-9. This lowers the cost to Boeing to build them, and makes it a viable replacement for the 767 but with considerably longer range. As Boeing has no MOM to even offer to customers, the 787-8 is the only plane Boeing has to offer between the size of the 737-10 and the 787-9.

https://thepointsguy.com/news/aa-confirms-dreamliner-order-cancels-a350


That's a good point.

With the new commonality with the 789, the 788 does have a new "sweet spot". It's still not ideal as a 767 replacement, but it's the closest thing on the market right now (or the 321LR if you want to go a little smaller)
2020: SFO DFW IAH HOU CLT MEX BIS MIA GUA ORD DTW LGA BOS LHR DUB BFS BHD STN OAK PHL ISP JFK SJC DEN SJU LAS TXL GDL
 
User avatar
flyingclrs727
Posts: 2648
Joined: Thu Apr 19, 2007 7:44 am

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 8:56 pm

Antarius wrote:
flyingclrs727 wrote:
Well if it were a mistake, why did AA order a whole bunch of 787-8's as 767 replacements just two and a half years ago? These aren't the old build 787-8 that had low commonality with the 787-9. They are the rationalized 787-8 that incorporate the improvements developed for the 787-9. This lowers the cost to Boeing to build them, and makes it a viable replacement for the 767 but with considerably longer range. As Boeing has no MOM to even offer to customers, the 787-8 is the only plane Boeing has to offer between the size of the 737-10 and the 787-9.

https://thepointsguy.com/news/aa-confirms-dreamliner-order-cancels-a350


That's a good point.

With the new commonality with the 789, the 788 does have a new "sweet spot". It's still not ideal as a 767 replacement, but it's the closest thing on the market right now (or the 321LR if you want to go a little smaller)


But also consider the 767 is not ideal for the latest premium class seats. 1-2-1 business class cabins work better on the 787. Also, premium economy at 8 or 7 abreast will work on a 787 depending on the airline. The 767 cross section was designed for earlier ideas about cabin layouts. The hard product for modern business classes far exceeds what was offered for first class in the 1970's. The main difference between old first class and modern business class is in the soft product. First class service tends to have more on aircraft preparation of food.
 
Antarius
Posts: 2715
Joined: Thu Apr 13, 2017 1:27 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 9:10 pm

flyingclrs727 wrote:
Antarius wrote:
flyingclrs727 wrote:
Well if it were a mistake, why did AA order a whole bunch of 787-8's as 767 replacements just two and a half years ago? These aren't the old build 787-8 that had low commonality with the 787-9. They are the rationalized 787-8 that incorporate the improvements developed for the 787-9. This lowers the cost to Boeing to build them, and makes it a viable replacement for the 767 but with considerably longer range. As Boeing has no MOM to even offer to customers, the 787-8 is the only plane Boeing has to offer between the size of the 737-10 and the 787-9.

https://thepointsguy.com/news/aa-confirms-dreamliner-order-cancels-a350


That's a good point.

With the new commonality with the 789, the 788 does have a new "sweet spot". It's still not ideal as a 767 replacement, but it's the closest thing on the market right now (or the 321LR if you want to go a little smaller)


But also consider the 767 is not ideal for the latest premium class seats. 1-2-1 business class cabins work better on the 787. Also, premium economy at 8 or 7 abreast will work on a 787 depending on the airline. The 767 cross section was designed for earlier ideas about cabin layouts. The hard product for modern business classes far exceeds what was offered for first class in the 1970's. The main difference between old first class and modern business class is in the soft product. First class service tends to have more on aircraft preparation of food.


I agree on the cross section. The issue with the 788 is weight when compared to the 767. The 787 is geared for longhaul flying and has a OEW that is 30% higher than the 763; this is why the 787-3 never actually made it into production.

This is why the MoM aircraft keeps getting floated (or a 767neo). Something purpose built for that gap between the 737/a321 and the 788/a332/a339.
2020: SFO DFW IAH HOU CLT MEX BIS MIA GUA ORD DTW LGA BOS LHR DUB BFS BHD STN OAK PHL ISP JFK SJC DEN SJU LAS TXL GDL
 
sixfootscream
Posts: 129
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2016 12:31 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 10:26 pm

VSMUT nails it perfectly.
 
strfyr51
Posts: 5089
Joined: Tue Apr 10, 2012 5:04 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 10:47 pm

Sokes wrote:
I know it sold well.
However Airbus sold A330-300s while Boeing sold B787-8s.
I wonder if Boeing should have early focused on the -9, leaving the -8 business to A330-200.

I don't think Boeing gave the A330 any credit toward what the 787 was to become as they're only similar in size. the 787-8's range is totally superior, and what Boeing learned from building the 787-8 helped them make the 787-9 the winner it is, Nobody before had built an intercontinental airplane from a single winding so the learning curve was pretty steep. to say the least. Once they got the process down? They refined it with the 787-9and the -10.
 
StudiodeKadent
Posts: 438
Joined: Mon Jul 31, 2017 8:43 am

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sat Nov 21, 2020 11:37 pm

The 787-8 is an excellent plane for new longhaul routes as well as thin longhaul routes. Its been a great success even though Boeing made some initial blunders on it. If it weren't for the blunders it would be even more successful.

In addition, the 787-8 is getting improvements from the 787-9, which will increase commonality and performance and (most likely) efficiency. There may be a second wind for the 787-8 as a result.

I wouldn't call the 787-8 a mistake.
 
RJMAZ
Posts: 2072
Joined: Sat Jul 09, 2016 2:54 am

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sun Nov 22, 2020 12:41 am

The 787-8 being first was the ultimate chess move.

Between 1998 and 2008 Airbus delivered nearly twice as many smaller A330-200 compared to A330-300. 334 vs 179 deliveries. It was only in 2012 when Airbus increased the MTOW of the A330-300 that the deliveries for the larger model sky rocketed.

The 787-8 was perfectly timed and sized to replace these early A330-200 aircraft if we assume a 15 year life with the first owner. The 787-8 also replaced many old and smaller 767 aircraft.

The 787-9 was perfectly timed for the replacement cycles of the A340-300, 777-200ER and soon the high MTOW A330-300 aircraft.

The 787-8 was a huge success. It's sales dropped because it had captured most of the small widebody market. It converted many early A330 customers.

The strength of the 787 family is not only having three cabin lengths but that they also have vastly different payload range curves. The 787-10 is the medium haul efficiency monster, the 787-8 is for thin long routes and the 787-9 is the all rounder.

The A350-900 is clearly superior to the 787-9 but as a family the A350 can not cover the same spectrum of flights with one pilot pool. The A350-1000 has a similar range and payload curve just slightly bigger.
 
Sokes
Topic Author
Posts: 2113
Joined: Sat Mar 09, 2019 4:48 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sun Nov 22, 2020 2:11 am

VSMUT wrote:
Who's to say BA would not have gone for a mix of A330-200s and -300s if Boeing didn't offer the 787-8?

My original hypothesis:
Leave the -8 market to Airbus and focus on the -9.
Most jobs an-8 does, an A330-200 also does.
But same can not be said of the A330-300 versus the -9. So the -9 has much more added value than the -8.
Since the -300 can't do the job of a -9 I think the alternative would have been a mixed fleet.

I don't doubt the -8 to be great for airlines. But very few refer to the deferred production costs. So far only AA ordering the -8 in 2018 convinces me.

That the capacity gap to the B777-300ER is too big may also be a good point, I can't judge. Airlines have no problem to replace B747-400s with smaller planes.

However:
There is a forecast from 2019 that shows reduced demand for B787s from 2021 to 2024. Maybe Boeing didn't want to reduce production for only a few years and sold the -8 at no profit/ small loss?
The -8s were to be delivered first, starting from 2020.
https://dsm.forecastinternational.com/w ... stainable/

The AA order included a cancellation of 20 A350s and a deferral of B737MAXs.
Maybe Boeing agreed to shift the MAX order backward in exchange for the -8 order?
US Airways ordered the A350 in 2005 when only 135 were ordered by all airlines. I'm surprised Airbus agreed to the cancellation. Had Airbus sold them too cheap? Anybody knows more?

How many million $/ aircraft is commonality worth?
Maybe VSMUT does nail it. Again: I can't judge.
Why can't the world be a little bit more autistic?
 
Sokes
Topic Author
Posts: 2113
Joined: Sat Mar 09, 2019 4:48 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sun Nov 22, 2020 2:29 am

RJMAZ wrote:
The 787-8 was perfectly timed and sized to replace these early A330-200 aircraft...

Perfectly timed and sized to replace them at a loss for Boeing.

The A350-900 is clearly superior to the 787-9 but as a family the A350 can not cover the same spectrum of flights with one pilot pool.

Agreed. Again: At what prize?
Has there ever been a plane where three different sizes sold well, or sold well with a profit?
Why can't the world be a little bit more autistic?
 
User avatar
Stitch
Posts: 27301
Joined: Wed Jul 06, 2005 4:26 am

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sun Nov 22, 2020 2:39 am

Sokes wrote:
I wonder if Boeing should have early focused on the -9, leaving the -8 business to A330-200.


That just would have increased A330-200 sales by many hundreds.

Boeing started with the 787-8 because that was a model airlines wanted. The original 7E7 was smaller than the 787: the 7E7-8 was about the capacity of the 767-300ER and the 7E7-9 was the capacity of the A330-200. Airlines liked the capacity of the A330-200 and while it was very efficient for it's time, it would not have been nearly as efficient as the 7E7-9. Airlines also had A340-300s and 777-200s they wanted to retire and they wanted a plane more efficient than the 777-200LR or with better range than the A330-300 (which was fairly more efficient than the 777-200).

So those airlines pushed Boeing to make the 7E7-8 with similar capacity to the A330-200 and the 7E7-9 similar in capacity to the A340-300, A330-300 and 777-200. Boeing could "recycle" the 7E7-9 into the 787-8, but they needed more time and work to create the 787-9 and the 787-8 would also work out the design and production systems for the 787-9.
 
Sokes
Topic Author
Posts: 2113
Joined: Sat Mar 09, 2019 4:48 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sun Nov 22, 2020 2:48 am

Opus99 wrote:
Yup. Also do take note that BA switched 4 787-9s to -8 which took their original order from 8 to 12 -8s.

Google doesn't help me. You have a source and some more infos?
Why can't the world be a little bit more autistic?
 
DylanHarvey
Posts: 418
Joined: Thu Feb 01, 2018 5:45 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sun Nov 22, 2020 2:49 am

RJMAZ wrote:
The 787-8 being first was the ultimate chess move.

Between 1998 and 2008 Airbus delivered nearly twice as many smaller A330-200 compared to A330-300. 334 vs 179 deliveries. It was only in 2012 when Airbus increased the MTOW of the A330-300 that the deliveries for the larger model sky rocketed.

The 787-8 was perfectly timed and sized to replace these early A330-200 aircraft if we assume a 15 year life with the first owner. The 787-8 also replaced many old and smaller 767 aircraft.

The 787-9 was perfectly timed for the replacement cycles of the A340-300, 777-200ER and soon the high MTOW A330-300 aircraft.

The 787-8 was a huge success. It's sales dropped because it had captured most of the small widebody market. It converted many early A330 customers.

The strength of the 787 family is not only having three cabin lengths but that they also have vastly different payload range curves. The 787-10 is the medium haul efficiency monster, the 787-8 is for thin long routes and the 787-9 is the all rounder.

The A350-900 is clearly superior to the 787-9 but as a family the A350 can not cover the same spectrum of flights with one pilot pool. The A350-1000 has a similar range and payload curve just slightly bigger.

I think you completely nailed it here.
 
Sokes
Topic Author
Posts: 2113
Joined: Sat Mar 09, 2019 4:48 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sun Nov 22, 2020 3:08 am

Stitch wrote:
...and the 787-8 would also work out the design and production systems for the 787-9.

Good info.
To the quote:
It's well known that outsourcing was a costly mistake. Then there is all the carbon fiber.
Did they ramp up too fast?

There is one thought of school that thinks basic research should be done by universities, not companies. Kennedy's moon landing is usually mentioned in this context.

We also discussed that Bombardier ruined itself by dancing at too many occasions at the same time. I'm not sure what to think.
The Learjet 85 cost Bombardier 4,9 billion $ write off in the quarter they cancelled it.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Learjet_85

Should that have been a university project?
Is having two teams work on similar projects a good idea? Covid 19 vaccine development suggests so.

Solar cell development was done by high subsidies. The idea is that lot of money has to flow to reach all corners of the value chain. But I wonder what 20% of that money spent over 10 years in universities would have achieved?
One woman takes nine months to make a child. How long do nine women take?

B787 was ambitious. Maybe the ramp up was too fast. Which of course would rubbish my hypothesis that the -8 was a mistake.
Thoughts?
Why can't the world be a little bit more autistic?
 
Ziyulu
Posts: 981
Joined: Thu Oct 13, 2016 10:35 am

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sun Nov 22, 2020 3:17 am

Is it my imagination or is the 787-8 a lower quality plane? It seems that I did not have good experiences with the -8. The -9 was better, but still not as good quality as the 777s.
 
dtw2hyd
Posts: 8452
Joined: Wed Jan 09, 2013 12:11 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sun Nov 22, 2020 3:37 am

It was a good experimental aircraft(risk partners, light weight low quality low supply components, 3 parts depots for entire planet earth) in commercial service, good for one term. Most leased will be back with bankers at the end of lease.
All posts are just opinions.
 
User avatar
MrHMSH
Posts: 2688
Joined: Sat Oct 12, 2013 7:32 pm

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sun Nov 22, 2020 4:43 am

Definitely not a mistake, though the execution of the 787-8 (or more specifically, the 787 program) was far from good, to put it mildly, the 788 took the hits, problems were addressed, so when the 789 and 78X came around they had it smoother. If they'd started with the 789 or 78X those models may have suffered from the fallout of the 787's problems. 400+ sold might not seem impressive at a time when the 789 and A359 have racked up the numbers, but by any reasonable measure it's a solid success.
 
User avatar
Stitch
Posts: 27301
Joined: Wed Jul 06, 2005 4:26 am

Re: Was the B787-8 a mistake?

Sun Nov 22, 2020 6:01 am

Sokes wrote:
Did they ramp up too fast?


They grossly underestimated the amount of time they needed to design the airframe and start production.


Sokes wrote:
There is one thought of school that thinks basic research should be done by universities, not companies.


Boeing and Lamborghini both worked (and continue to work) with the University of Washington on CFRP applications in aerospace and vehicle production so there was plenty of "university research" being done prior to program launch. Boeing had also done CFRP barrel research and development for the Sonic Cruiser concept many years earlier.

Popular Searches On Airliners.net

Top Photos of Last:   24 Hours  •  48 Hours  •  7 Days  •  30 Days  •  180 Days  •  365 Days  •  All Time

Military Aircraft Every type from fighters to helicopters from air forces around the globe

Classic Airliners Props and jets from the good old days

Flight Decks Views from inside the cockpit

Aircraft Cabins Passenger cabin shots showing seat arrangements as well as cargo aircraft interior

Cargo Aircraft Pictures of great freighter aircraft

Government Aircraft Aircraft flying government officials

Helicopters Our large helicopter section. Both military and civil versions

Blimps / Airships Everything from the Goodyear blimp to the Zeppelin

Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon

Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos

Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft

Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries

Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground

Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos