Temporary adjustment to 787 supplier deliveries

Yesterday, we addressed a series of media calls about an adjustment we’re making to some 787 component delivery schedules. This temporary adjustment is intended to keep the production flow in balance and to minimize out-of-sequence work moving into 787 Final Assembly.

Because of the schedule margin that exists in our plan, the adjustment is being accommodated within our current customer delivery commitments.

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We continue to complete work on 787s already in the factory.

As we’ve mentioned before, we’ve been working closely with our partners to anticipate and stay ahead of ramp-up challenges in the supply chain and these steps are part of that activity. A few of our partners are working through some spot parts shortages and are still incorporating engineering changes.

So, rather than unnecessarily pass along out-of-sequence work, we’ve asked those suppliers simply to complete the work at their facilities before shipping to Everett. This will temporarily delay (by about a month) the start of final body join on airplanes 23 and 24.

In the meantime, we’ll continue to complete work on the Dreamliners we already have “in flow” in Everett. We’ve made progress in stabilizing the supply chain and now we must continue to actively manage it to ensure the long-term health of the 787 program.

Parts shortages, of course, are not unusual and happen occasionally on every airplane program, and this adjustment will ultimately strengthen our production system.

Comments (5)

Paulo M (Johannesburg, RSA):

I think this is one of the Lean+ lessons from another time when Boeing was ramping-up production to meet demand - specifically for the 737 Next-Generation Family, but also with the 747-400. That time was in late 1997 when Boeing had to halt production on those two lines to catch-up up with traveled jobs. Makes sense to act now before things get hairy.

steve l (ny):

Looks like you have a big job ahead of you - ramp 787, increase rates next year on 747-8 and 777, and there's still a decision on 737, but it sounds like up!

Your supply chain is mostly much smaller companies - are you going to help them? what are the choke points? Are you looking for suppliers to consolidate?

Jerry1t (New York, N.Y. USA):

Does any of this have to do with the block point changes that were to be instituted into the production cycle following the results from flight testing.

You do not refer to the changes that would normally follow in weight reduction and other adjustments beginning with ( I think) the 21st production plane.

P.Sumantri (France):

Paulo M is right. I still remember the news about the production chaos at Boeing back in 1997. That year, Boeing posted the first full year loss ever. Coincidently, it was the year Boeing merged with McDonnell-Douglas.

Yes, part shortage happens like the one mentioned in this press release in 1997.

My blog: http: //Vero Venia

Norman (Long Beach, California, United States):

Accountability is everyones responsibility and you can't build a plane without all its components so it is up to everyone from sub assembly companies to the final assembly in Seattle to the hundreds of sub-contractors that build of the smallest parts to build and ship on-time.

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