The Boeing MAX 8 Accidents

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jis

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Back when Stonecipher was anointed at Boeing several of us, including several of my friends at Boeing, had half seriously speculated that he would be the undoing of Boeing. Little did we know ...

None of those stayed on at Boeing. They were out within five years. But Boeing did continue to be a huge customer of ours, specially in the area of IT system management for factory floor automation.
 
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anumberone

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Interesting breakdown, so now what. When Engineering, Production and Inspection work together things usually go well, when The bean counters in the front office get involved, things sometimes go south. Sort of a typical evaluation I've found to be true.
 

jis

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And now this opinion from a Transport Canada safety official (not a Transport Canada official position) sent off to the lead safety regulation agencies...

https://theaircurrent.com/aviation-safety/transport-canada-safety-official-urges-removal-of-mcas-from-737-max/

Specially the statement that issues keep cropping up faster than they can be resolved or the impression to that effect is somewhat alarming, and suggests that things may not be as hunky-dory as is being suggested by Boeing and FAA.

Another informative article...

https://leehamnews.com/2019/11/22/bjorns-corner-analysing-the-lion-air-jt610-crash-part-4/

Isn’t MCAS needed for the safe flight of the 737 MAX? No! This is where most articles about MCAS are lacking. The 737 MAX works without MCAS.

Nothing in normal flying changes, in fact very little in non-normal flying as well. The pilot can do brusk Go-Arounds where he slams the throttles to full power and we won’t even get close to where MCAS steps in. First, because in a Go-Around he has slats and flaps deployed and as the aircraft cleans up he’s way below 11° AoA.

I have problems finding any case where a pilot would fly in a way where an inop MCAS would be missed. And if we for some extreme reason sometimes, somewhere, somehow find us in such a flight situation, the probability that MCAS then is inop is virtually nil.
Read the rest of the article. It is interesting and informative.
 
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west point

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IMHO Boeing made a mistake of making the 737 its max. A better aircraft would have been the 757 which has a taller landing gear and same fuselage. That would have allowed the engines to be placed where they belong under the wings instead of ahead. MAX engines can provide too much up nose torque under certain conditions. New aircraft for many years have gone to be more stable not less that is what the MAX is. IMO there will be more accidents caused by this plane designed by IT folks instead of airmen !
 

ehbowen

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IMHO Boeing made a mistake of making the 737 its max. A better aircraft would have been the 757 which has a taller landing gear and same fuselage. That would have allowed the engines to be placed where they belong under the wings instead of ahead.
But, then, Southwest Airlines might actually have to train their pilots to walk and chew gum at the same time (gasp!).
 

jiml

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IMHO Boeing made a mistake of making the 737 its max. A better aircraft would have been the 757 which has a taller landing gear and same fuselage. That would have allowed the engines to be placed where they belong under the wings instead of ahead. MAX engines can provide too much up nose torque under certain conditions. New aircraft for many years have gone to be more stable not less that is what the MAX is. IMO there will be more accidents caused by this plane designed by IT folks instead of airmen !
A friend of mine in the industry rates the 757 as one of the best - and most underrated - planes ever built.
 

jis

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IMHO Boeing made a mistake of making the 737 its max. A better aircraft would have been the 757 which has a taller landing gear and same fuselage. That would have allowed the engines to be placed where they belong under the wings instead of ahead. MAX engines can provide too much up nose torque under certain conditions. New aircraft for many years have gone to be more stable not less that is what the MAX is. IMO there will be more accidents caused by this plane designed by IT folks instead of airmen !
It is too heavy to compete effectively with the likes of A321XLR, 50 of which United just ordered to do a 1:1 replacement of its international 757-200 fleet, with about half a dozen additional for growth included.

It is absurd to claim that the MAX was designed by IT folks and exposes a phenomenal level of ignorance, unless that is being stated merely in jest. Designed by aircraft designers with absurd requirements placed on them by MBAs - yes. By IT folks - no.

BTW, here is a very good article on the lay of the land and the challenges that Boeing faces...

https://www.forbes.com/sites/richardaboulafia/2019/12/06/united-airbus-boeing-a321xlr-nma/#14ffb65b39e8
 
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keelhauled

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I have read that in any case Boeing destroyed the tooling used on the 757 production line after the last aircraft was delivered (although I am not sure that the company ever confirmed it), so it's kind of a moot point in general vis a vis the 737 MAX.
 

Trogdor

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The 757 was overweight and overpowered, and therefore too expensive, to effectively serve that market today. That’s why demand for it fell through the floor as soon as the 737 became capable enough to fill 90-95% of its flights for significantly less money.

It’s not as simple as “just put a new engine on it.” The whole structure is beefy, resulting in a MTOW that would qualify it as a “heavy” for ATC purposes. This requires engines in a thrust class that nobody makes engines for right now, and would be billions in development costs. It couldn’t compete with the A321 or the 737 on economics no matter which way you look at it. In order to take enough weight out of the plane to make it competitive, you’d almost be building an entirely new plane from scratch anyway. That’s something Boeing has been trying to get going for several years, and still has yet to find a way to justify the business case for it given the cost of development and the likely market for the plane for missions that couldn’t be covered by the 737 line (Max groundings notwithstanding).
 

Dakota 400

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There has been a too cozy relationship between the FAA and Boeing in my opinion. I'm a Boeing shareholder and I have voted and will continue to vote in 2020 for a wholesale change in management and in most--if not all--of the members of the Board of Directors.

I think it will be interesting to see if the European and Canadian aviation authorities agree whenever the FAA decide to certify the MAX again.
 

Bluejet

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IMHO Boeing made a mistake of making the 737 its max. A better aircraft would have been the 757 which has a taller landing gear and same fuselage. That would have allowed the engines to be placed where they belong under the wings instead of ahead. MAX engines can provide too much up nose torque under certain conditions. New aircraft for many years have gone to be more stable not less that is what the MAX is. IMO there will be more accidents caused by this plane designed by IT folks instead of airmen !
All the tooling for the 757 was destroyed years ago. Building a 757NG would basically require a new ground up effort, and if you do that then just go ahead and fund the NSA.

Also, no engine is currently available in the 757s required thrust rating.
 

Bluejet

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It is too heavy to compete effectively with the likes of A321XLR, 50 of which United just ordered to do a 1:1 replacement of its international 757-200 fleet, with about half a dozen additional for growth included.

It is absurd to claim that the MAX was designed by IT folks and exposes a phenomenal level of ignorance, unless that is being stated merely in jest. Designed by aircraft designers with absurd requirements placed on them by MBAs - yes. By IT folks - no.

BTW, here is a very good article on the lay of the land and the challenges that Boeing faces...

https://www.forbes.com/sites/richardaboulafia/2019/12/06/united-airbus-boeing-a321xlr-nma/#14ffb65b39e8

The XLR is going to be revolutionary for trans Atlantic travel. After that I’m guessing Airbus will fund the development of the a321+... I rewinged a321 with laminar flow and extended wingspan with folding wingtips to allow access to current icao group 3 gates.
 
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jis

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Airbus has been playing around with fully CFR wing box and such for the A32x class planes. So it seems quite likely that they will show up soon in some derivative models.
 

jis

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Boeing to temporarily suspend production of MAXs in January.

https://twitter.com/CNBCnow/status/1206688706347843585

Something is cooking that is possibly more serious than we have been let to believe? Would they suspend production if it was about to be ungrounded?

The following WSJ article requires a subscription if you have run out of your freebies...

https://www.wsj.com/articles/boeing-to-suspend-737-max-production-in-january-11576532032

And here is the article in New York Times with a few more tidbits...

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/16/business/boeing-737-max.html
 
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railiner

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Wow...that is hard news to take. Could this mean that Boeing will scuttle the Max entirely? Hard to fathom, with so much already invested.
If that does happen, it would be a miracle if they could survive as a company, although they are "too important to fail" to the US...
 

PRR 60

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The FAA informed Boeing not to expect recert before February. They already have about 400 Max's parked and figure they can deliver about 70 per month once they get the OK. That's about 6 months just to clear out the backlog.

According to CNBC, when Boeing issued investor guidance with the expectation of FAA re-certification by the end of the year, the FAA was very displeased. As FAA Administrator Stephen Dickson said to CNBC, "look at the tasks to complete and the calendar, and the math does not add up." The FAA felt that Boeing was applying pressure to short cut the process, and the FAA was not in the mood for that.

My guess is that Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg is in serious trouble - not just for the MAX issue directly (which would be enough), but also the continual issuance of unrealistic assessments of the recovery. Either he knows the issues and chooses to sugar coat it for public consumption or he has created a culture where his reports are not willing to tell him the facts. Either way, it's time to go.

One interesting side issue: despite the shutdown of the MAX line, Boeing will not be furloughing any of the 12,000 affected workers. For the next two weeks it is not an issue since Boeing shuts production over the holidays. Even after that, the workers will remain on the payroll. One thought is that, given the strong economy and record low unemployment, laying off skilled workers would result in losing them.
 
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railiner

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Sounds like a great time to be an Airbus salesperson...
Perhaps Embraer should look to 'upsize' their offerings...should be a lot of highly qualified people in the job market soon, to help them achieve that...
 

jis

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Sounds like a great time to be an Airbus salesperson...
Perhaps Embraer should look to 'upsize' their offerings...should be a lot of highly qualified people in the job market soon, to help them achieve that...
But then Embraer is partly owned by Boeing, the last time I looked. AFAIR happened when Airbus acquired Bombardier's aviation business partly due to Boeing's swaggering stupidity.
 

jis

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Muilenburg is out at Boeing. He resigned this morning and was replaced by Chairman David Calhoun as CEO. Lawrence W. Kellner to Become Chairman of the Board

https://boeing.mediaroom.com/2019-12-23-Boeing-Announces-Leadership-Changes

The fallout from the MAX fiasco, which incidentally was not of Muilnburg's making since most of the critical decisions were made before his time as CEO, continues...

But unfortunately I will be surprised if Calhoun fixes anything. Wonders do happen, but his background suggests that he will be able to massage the balance sheet to look better, but will most likely fail at re-inculcating an engineering culture at Boeing.
 
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daybeers

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The following WSJ article requires a subscription if you have run out of your freebies...
Private browsing/incognito mode or clearing cookies and data for WSJ or any other website with similar freebies fixes this [emoji4]

Very interesting news about Boeing over the past couple weeks though! Agreed, a very good time to be at Airbus.
 

anumberone

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This is conversation from Boeing.

Now friggin Lion Air might need a sim to fly the MAX, and maybe because of their own stupidity. I’m scrambling trying to figure out how to unscrew this now! idiots,” one Boeing employee wrote in June 2017 text messages obtained by the company and released by the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee.
In response, a Boeing colleague replied: “WHAT THE F%$&!!!! But their sister airline is already flying it!” That was an apparent reference to Malindo Air, the Malaysian-based carrier that was the first to fly the Max commercially.
Doing simulator training would have undercut a critical selling point of the jet: that airlines would be able to allow crews trained on an older 737 version to fly the Max after just a brief computer course.

I think they have figured out that won't work. Lion Air was one of Boeing largest customers.
 
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The Journalist

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I'm currently reading Airframe, a Michael Crichton novel about the investigation into an air emergency resulting from the apparent spontaneous deployment of a poorly-documented feature, noting uncomfortably cozy relationships between the manufacturer and the FAA and highly varying pilot and maintenance standards in Southeast Asia.

It was written in 1996.
 
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