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Hamlet69
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Re: Boeing adding 737 line in Everett

Sat Feb 04, 2023 6:06 am

Revelation wrote:
Rajahdhani wrote:
Though, understandably so - it will just be an opinion, what do you assume the cost overruns might be/look like and/or over what issues, might be? Not at all disagreeing with you here, however hoping to better understand the project (considering how much is new here) as well as, not having a more advanced understanding of how/where past overruns occurred - I wonder what avenues are here for such an overrun. What are some things/aspects/issues that may (and/or normally) contribute to said overrun? Also, would engine manufacturers (and/or planned engine partners) be included as a 'partner' (is that a thing?), and if costs do rise, would the other partner shoulder the burden?

Hamlet69 wrote:
I have no intention of speaking for Revelation here, but I am going to suggest you are overthinking things a bit.

We need to remember exactly what the TBW demonstrator is, and more importantly, what it is not. It is exactly that - a 'demonstrator.' It is being built solely to demonstrate whether Boeing/NASA's models are accurate or not. That's it. It is not, nor is it intended to be, even a 'prototype.' All it will do is either prove, or disprove, whether the concept works, and how well or not. When one looks at it from this standpoint, then, the idea of 'where the cost overruns will be' is not the question. There goal is straightforward - to build the thing, and to test it. Will it cost more to build than they anticipate? Possibly, but probably not by much. The point being - at this stage, there is no program, and all it's associated costs (i.e. - getting the design mature enough, getting the manufacturing detailed enough, getting the production line set up, getting it through certification, etc. etc.).

I'm not trying to single you out. There's an overall consensus here on A.net that the Demonstrator is going to be a prototype of Boeing's NSA. It's not. Nor is it intended to be. And this site needs to realize that before it has a complete meltdown in 2028.

Hamlet69

There always is scope for overrun.

https://breakingdefense.com/2022/01/boe ... 46-tanker/ says Boeing has overrun the $4.9B budget for KC-46 by $5.4B, which is greater than a 100% miss on the budget. The overruns came from some technical challenges, like going with a vision system that turned out to have flaws that required a whole new approach to be taken, and more basic errors such as the electrical wiring not meeting military standards and even unintended contamination of the fuel system of the first flying example.

https://breakingdefense.com/2022/10/boe ... -force-one for instance says that pretty much every other active development program Boeing is doing on defense/space is overrunning its budget: "T-7A Red Hawk trainer, the Navy’s MQ-25 tanker drone, VC-25B — better known as Air Force One, when the president is onboard — and NASA’s Commercial Crew program".

We all know on the commercial side 777-X was originally scheduled for delivery in 2019 and is massively over budget, and of course MAX has incurred massive costs as well.

Having said this, the points raised by morrisond and Hamlet69 are accurate, if we are discussing SFD, the sustainable flight demonstrator. This is just a proof of concept. I presume by the cost alone it will fly under an FAA Experimental certificate. It will of course have to be safe, but it won't need to meet all the same requirements as a commercially certified airliner would. The scope of the program is relatively small: show that a truss-braced wing produces the expected results in the real world. It won't even have the configuration shown in some of the renderings. The engines will be on the rear of the MD-90 donor fuselage, not on the wings.

And that's where the note of caution comes in. SFD is just a proof of concept. If it overruns its ~$1B budget by 100% then the hit to the bottom line is still something that Boeing could contain within its R&D budget. Given its relatively small scope of work, it is not likely to overrun to that degree. But it's also not a commercial airliner project. If it proves that the technology is sound, THEN you start determining how to use it in an actual airliner project, and run into some of the other topics we've discussed, like what will it take for FAA to certify a cockpit for a new clean sheet airliner. A real airliner project has to be commercially certified, which means not just lots of testing, but lots of work to figure out the right kinds of testing needed to certify a TBW airliner, which may or may not be the same methods as currently in use. Also I presume it will have a new-tech engine such as CFM RISE which is un-ducted, and that too will be a certification challenge.

All of this is a huge amount of risk. Boeing and partners need to put in the money up front and don't know what will emerge after all the challenges have been faced, or when it will emerge. That's why it's being done in increments via proof-of-concept projects such as SFD. They want as much of the risk to be retired as soon as possible, long before they commit the big money needed for a new airliner program. MentourPilot's video on the RISE has shown that they plan to fly it on an A380 testbed. That should be something quite interesting to see!



All very good points! I’m actually quite surprised they are going fly-by-wire (light?), as that will require quite the rebuild of not just the center fuselage, but completely gutting and rebuilding the nose as well. I guess the benefits must outweigh the cost. And if you’re going to be cutting the fuselage up anyway to add the TBW, they should have easy-ish access. I’d imagine engines will be off-the shelf, at first, anyway. . .
 
Hamlet69
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Re: Boeing adding 737 line in Everett

Sat Feb 04, 2023 6:12 am

keesje wrote:
Sermons wrote:
keesje wrote:
But maybe we should be carefull to not extrapolate that into hoped for a NB marketshare turnaround. Market realities don't seem to justify that.


No one here who knows what's going on is expecting a MAJOR market share turn around, that is not the whole point of this thread anyways .

No one here who knows the numbers expects a 50% market share for Boeing in NB seg anytime soon at least up until the "797" or 737 replacement arrives.

Boeing's market share is around 36-40℅ in NB seg...
What most people expect is for Boeing to maintain that market share and at least claw back 2-3℅ with the help of this new line at Everett. That's all, up until we have the TBW replacement or something similar in the 2030s.

As a consolidation for Boeing, a minimum of 60℅ market share is expected in the WB seg.....

Anyways, I think you are mistaking this for a A vs B thread which it is not.


I was referencing the 74-80 production rates expectations being communicated & picked up. That would imply MAJOR market share growth.

Maybe Boeing will dedicate the Everett line to the 737-10? Airbus Assembly lines have had their dedicated versions.


Yet, you seem to have no issue with predicting the A220 will triple or quadruple it’s average annual net order intake (which would be required to justify rate 15-18). Weird. . . :roll:
 
Hamlet69
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Re: Boeing adding 737 line in Everett

Sat Feb 04, 2023 6:17 am

Probably a question for Kanban or Spetsnaz55 -

As it’s been pre-787 since I toured the Everett site, what are the clearances in the (old) 787 bay? Specifically, would it be possible to run two parallel MAX lines in that one bay? My quick math tells me they’d need @ 40’ total of clearance to run them wingtip to wingtip. But if the lines were staggered. . .

Just curious if you all thought it would be feasible.
 
JayinKitsap
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Re: Boeing adding 737 line in Everett

Sat Feb 04, 2023 6:47 am

It would make sense to do the CFM RISE on the TBW demonstrator, but it may delay it a few years. First flight testing is 5 years out, + a few years with typical delays.
 
JayinKitsap
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Re: Boeing adding 737 line in Everett

Sat Feb 04, 2023 7:17 am

kanban wrote:
bikerthai wrote:
So once the 737 line in Renton shuts down, does anyone else see the city decommissioning the airport as well? That is some prime real-estate.

bt

probably not... they've tried putting pilings in that area and hit nothing solid after 70 ft. that's a handicap for building earthquake resistant stuff.

Same as at NS Everett Marina, drove 120' precast piles thru 40 feet of water and 70 feet of the mud. They sank 3' the week after driving, that is nothing solid! Safeco Field is on 180' piles, lots of battered piles, angled like 12 degrees to make braced frames.

It can be done, but it costs lots of money, best for 3 story wood framed apartments over retail at the base. Wood frame apartments are 20 PSF dead load, steel frame is 70 PSF, concrete over 100 PSF dead load. Seismic forces are a factor times the Dead Load, only storage occupancies add to the seismic weight.

Boeing sold back in 2004 a 46 acre portion of the Renton plant, now called Renton Landing. Same apartments over retail that keeps the piling cost down. It got cleaned up but it was a lot of work over many years. This was done before selling it, still some limits on future land use as it is still contaminated but much less so.

https://www.seattletimes.com/business/4 ... nton-sold/
 
USAirKid
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Re: Boeing adding 737 line in Everett

Sat Feb 04, 2023 8:10 am

planecane wrote:
Noshow wrote:
Say, if Boeing did a MAX 10 style fuselage stretch to a MAX 11. Could this still be grandfathered? It would be great to move the long versions out of high capacity tight Renton to the more spacious Everett. Aside from that, it is great news for the truss braced wing production site selection process, with the huge CWC ready next door.


Aside from the regulatory issues, you have to assume that the length of the MAX 10 was what the engineers determined was the longest they could make the 737 without a major redesign for longer landing gear. Even before the regulatory issues it was clearly determined that doing that kind of redesign was not worth the investment.


AFAIK the MAX 10 has its own landing gear design so that it telescopes when extended. So they’ve already put a longer landing gear on for the MAX 10
 
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scbriml
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Re: Boeing adding 737 line in Everett

Sat Feb 04, 2023 9:05 am

USAirKid wrote:
planecane wrote:
Noshow wrote:
Say, if Boeing did a MAX 10 style fuselage stretch to a MAX 11. Could this still be grandfathered? It would be great to move the long versions out of high capacity tight Renton to the more spacious Everett. Aside from that, it is great news for the truss braced wing production site selection process, with the huge CWC ready next door.


Aside from the regulatory issues, you have to assume that the length of the MAX 10 was what the engineers determined was the longest they could make the 737 without a major redesign for longer landing gear. Even before the regulatory issues it was clearly determined that doing that kind of redesign was not worth the investment.


AFAIK the MAX 10 has its own landing gear design so that it telescopes when extended. So they’ve already put a longer landing gear on for the MAX 10


That's not strictly true. The 737-10 sits at exactly the same height off the ground as all other MAXes. It's only at the point of rotation that the gear extends and it's done by gravity if I remember correctly.

Edit: Video explaining exactly how it works - https://youtu.be/F4IGl4OizM4
 
DaCubbyBearBar
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Re: Boeing adding 737 line in Everett

Sat Feb 04, 2023 9:12 am

Is there are HINT as to when the MAX7 might see the light of day?? I thought since they used the MAX7 to recertify the MAX8/9, approval might occur in January. I know all is speculation...
 
morrisond
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Re: Boeing adding 737 line in Everett

Sat Feb 04, 2023 12:39 pm

DaCubbyBearBar wrote:
Is there are HINT as to when the MAX7 might see the light of day?? I thought since they used the MAX7 to recertify the MAX8/9, approval might occur in January. I know all is speculation...


On the Boeing conference call Calhoun said:

"We think first delivery for the 7 will be this year and probably for the 10 the next year."

https://s2.q4cdn.com/661678649/files/do ... script.pdf
 
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Revelation
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Re: Boeing adding 737 line in Everett

Sat Feb 04, 2023 3:33 pm

Hamlet69 wrote:
All very good points! I’m actually quite surprised they are going fly-by-wire (light?), as that will require quite the rebuild of not just the center fuselage, but completely gutting and rebuilding the nose as well. I guess the benefits must outweigh the cost. And if you’re going to be cutting the fuselage up anyway to add the TBW, they should have easy-ish access. I’d imagine engines will be off-the shelf, at first, anyway. . .

It's hard to parse through the little info we got in the AvWeek article. If I were a subscriber, I'd post a follow up or send an email to the author for more clarity, since he seems to have good sources (Mike Sinnett, a Boeing VP, is one named source). Having said this, the AvWeek article linked earlier says:

These include digital fly-by-wire flight controls that enable active load alleviation and flutter suppression to minimize the weight penalty of the longer, thinner wing, Sinnett says.

These types of systems can be added without "full fly-by-wire". They were added to 747-8 which has a digital cockpit but is not full FBW. https://www.boeing.com/commercial/aerom ... 2010_q3/2/ refers to "Fly-by-wire spoilers and outboard ailerons to save weight". Even MAX gets some of this treatment. http://www.b737.org.uk/737max.htm says "The MAX has a new fly-by-wire spoiler system. This is officially to improve production flow, reduce weight and improve stopping distances.". In these systems the traditional cable-and-pulley pilot input to these control surfaces is now just input data to a computer which decides how to move the surface based on that pilot input as well as other inputs such as load on the wing. The computer can prevent certain mechanical configurations that would put too much stress on the wing or the control surfaces themselves so they can be made lighter. That's how they save weight.

So, I originally read Sinnett's statement as probably just referring to digital control of some if not all of the control surfaces of the wing. I thought this because it seems expensive to me to come up with a full FBW implementation for a one-off proof of concept airplane. But, upon further review, I think it's probably simpler to do a full FBW for the aircraft (i.e. not just control the wing's control surfaces digitally, but also the tail's control surfaces too) since this is kind of a Frankenstein aircraft, new wings on an old fuse. This is helpful in retiring risk, since the eventual airliner project will certainly be full FBW. It will require reworking the MD-90 donor's tail with digitally controlled actuators. I'm honestly not sure either way. I'm not an expert in this space, nor even a practitioner, just going off what I read in the aviation media.

I presume the cockpit gets gutted either way. There isn't much in there you'd want to retain from a MD-90, no? Maybe it was one of the late-period ones made for Saudia that had a digital cockpit based on the MD-11 cockpit, but that was so long ago, anyone who worked on that tech is probably long gone. Who knows... Presumably the main cabin will have some engineering workstations in it for additional data gathering/processing, all the proof of concepts / prototypes have these.

As I said earlier, the MD-90 seems an odd choice for a donor airliner. It's been out of production for so long and was produced in the stone ages of digital technology (early 90s, so before Windows 95 was a thing). I would think this makes it hard to reuse much of its current tech. I guess it's mostly about wanting the 2x3 cross section, maybe a donor 737 with 3x3 cross section is too heavy?
 
planecane
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Re: Boeing adding 737 line in Everett

Sat Feb 04, 2023 4:41 pm

USAirKid wrote:
planecane wrote:
Noshow wrote:
Say, if Boeing did a MAX 10 style fuselage stretch to a MAX 11. Could this still be grandfathered? It would be great to move the long versions out of high capacity tight Renton to the more spacious Everett. Aside from that, it is great news for the truss braced wing production site selection process, with the huge CWC ready next door.


Aside from the regulatory issues, you have to assume that the length of the MAX 10 was what the engineers determined was the longest they could make the 737 without a major redesign for longer landing gear. Even before the regulatory issues it was clearly determined that doing that kind of redesign was not worth the investment.


AFAIK the MAX 10 has its own landing gear design so that it telescopes when extended. So they’ve already put a longer landing gear on for the MAX 10


It was designed to fit in the same wheel well as the other 737s. That's why I said without a "major" redesign which would require changes to the wing box.
 
Noshow
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Re: Boeing adding 737 line in Everett

Sat Feb 04, 2023 5:06 pm

Maybe heavier versions could get raked wingtips instead of the winglets to add lift and keep a comfortable ground clearance and T/O-performance? Span would slightly increase but not that much.
 
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kanban
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Re: Boeing adding 737 line in Everett

Sat Feb 04, 2023 6:12 pm

Hamlet69 wrote:
Probably a question for Kanban or Spetsnaz55 -

As it’s been pre-787 since I toured the Everett site, what are the clearances in the (old) 787 bay? Specifically, would it be possible to run two parallel MAX lines in that one bay? My quick math tells me they’d need @ 40’ total of clearance to run them wingtip to wingtip. But if the lines were staggered. . .

Just curious if you all thought it would be feasible.


probably not feasible... remember the 737 uses a moving line concept that requires a lot of center aisle parts and equipment traffic. (I'm basing this on experience not building / plane measurements)
 
iamlucky13
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Re: Boeing adding 737 line in Everett

Sat Feb 04, 2023 6:13 pm

Hamlet69 wrote:
Probably a question for Kanban or Spetsnaz55 -

As it’s been pre-787 since I toured the Everett site, what are the clearances in the (old) 787 bay? Specifically, would it be possible to run two parallel MAX lines in that one bay? My quick math tells me they’d need @ 40’ total of clearance to run them wingtip to wingtip. But if the lines were staggered. . .

Just curious if you all thought it would be feasible.


I'm pretty sure there is easily room for two parallel 737 lines. The building itself is 400 feet wide, based on measuring from aerial photos. Some of that is taken up by the mezzanine/office areas on either side of the assembly bay, but I think that's in the ballpark of 50 feet...certainly less than 100'. The 787 has a 197 foot wingspan, and photos of the factory show lots of space on either side of the wings.

https://www.heraldnet.com/business/a-br ... oeing-787/

Here's another angle where you can see some additional mezzanine that has been built out into the assembly bay. That would be removable if Boeing needed the room. For a size reference on the clear space to the left of this photo, the nose (section 41) is about 42 feet long.

https://content.fortune.com/wp-content/ ... =1440&q=75

The 737 MAX has a 117 foot wingspan. Two side-by-side, plus the 40' of total clearance you suggested is 274'. That's 67' more than the 787 wingspan, and it looks like there is 60+ feet of clearance just on the left side of the 2nd photo above (section 41 + workstand + two aisles
 
JayinKitsap
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Re: Boeing adding 737 line in Everett

Sun Feb 05, 2023 2:30 am

kanban wrote:
Hamlet69 wrote:
Probably a question for Kanban or Spetsnaz55 -

As it’s been pre-787 since I toured the Everett site, what are the clearances in the (old) 787 bay? Specifically, would it be possible to run two parallel MAX lines in that one bay? My quick math tells me they’d need @ 40’ total of clearance to run them wingtip to wingtip. But if the lines were staggered. . .

Just curious if you all thought it would be feasible.


probably not feasible... remember the 737 uses a moving line concept that requires a lot of center aisle parts and equipment traffic. (I'm basing this on experience not building / plane measurements)


A single FAL in the bay, the added space could be for pre FAL work, across from the FAL station that will use the parts. I would think keeping the line footprint the same except for adding length at each station would be best to keep certification the same with the other lines. A very important thing for manufacturing support. The added length is the difference between the -8 and -10 in length plus some extra fudge space if the existing building is longer than the Renton Lines. So you are right about not feasible, going double with different arrangements means a lot of certification issues forever more.

A pre FAL space might mean that there is say 1 wingset in storage so there is a buffer between wings and FAL, same with the tail and the landing gear. It would also give opportunity for 'side work' if the duration of a station is shorter than the line pace. All the fine tuning to get the best line speed for quality as well as expended labor. For the same manpower a line with extra space could possibly be 5% faster, an extra plane or 2 a month.
 
Hamlet69
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Re: Boeing adding 737 line in Everett

Sun Feb 05, 2023 4:29 am

Thank you everyone for your responses. Based on the photos proved by ‘iam ’, there certainly appears to be physical space for two. But thanks to responses by ‘kanban’ and ‘jay’, it still doesn’t sound feasible. I had especially forgotten about the Production Certificate, so thanks Jay! There’s no doubt Boeing will attempt to keep that as identical as possible, given the current state of things. So this will be a mirror of the Renton FAL, just with added space.
 
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Revelation
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Re: Boeing adding 737 line in Everett

Sat Feb 11, 2023 1:47 pm

viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1480849&start=100#p23669097 quotes Bloomberg as saying AI is ordering 190 MAXes. On top of the current backlog, this seems to be even more justification for a 4th 737 line (3 commercial, 1 military).
 
mattcawby
Posts: 119
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Re: Boeing adding 737 line in Everett

Fri Feb 17, 2023 4:44 am

Demolition begins next week on the 40-81 and 40-82 to make way for the 737 MAX North Line.

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