The Chart:

Friday, June 28, 2013

A Tribute to an Overdue Delivery #4 : Line 1432

A red letter day today, as line 1432 (RC572) HZ-AI4 for Saudi Arabian Cargo delivered. And overdue for delivery she was indeed. She rolled out over two (going on three) years ago and languished for most of that time. But now she has a job, and it's time to get to work.

Here's a lengthy delivery time lapse, which includes shots of Norwegian's first 787 delivery (update: not delivery, just a customer flight) (EI-LNA), and Japan Airlines JA832J taking her first flight.

At the Everett Delivery Center

Taxiing onto the runway.

JAL 787 getting ready for a first flight.

Love that livery.

Norwegian 787 getting ready to deliver.

JAL 787 JA832J first flight.

HZ-AI4 for Saudi Arabian Cargo delivery flight.

Norwegian 787 EI-LNA delivery customer flight.

Some old pics of her:

Refurbishment - getting engines

Land bound



This is the fastest she moved over her first two years.

Line 1437 on the move

With the delivery of line 1432, line 1437 remains unloved and alone at KPAE, the last of the "rejected Atlas three" to not find a home. Today she flew to Glasgow Industrial, a private airport where Boeing maintains a flight test facility. I don't know what exactly to make of that, but hopefully something is in the works.

1432's delivery flight was cancelled today, but she should leave for the Middle East tomorrow.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Lufthansa Delivery #8

Line 1477 (RC029) D-ABYJ for Lufthansa just took off on her delivery flight. This is Lufthansa's 8th frame entering service.

She did a loop and a low pass on KPAE before heading to Frankurt. Saucy!

Last two shots thanks to Matt Cawby.

New: Direct Link to the Chart

So after reading All Things 787's post on his chart update, I looked at the 747-8 Report on my phone (without desktop style forced), and realized the chart is nowhere to be found. Seeing as the chart is the real star of the show here (and probably not my Nobel Prize worthy editorials), I added a direct link to the chart in the blog title.

Please let me know if this doesn't work for you.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

The Last First Flight

For a frame in the overdue category at least. Line 1433 (RC553) B-LJC for Cathay Pacific took off today for the first time, well over two years after rolling off the assembly line and starting her long slumber, stored in various places around KPAE in an unflyable state. This marks the last "old frame" that needed refurbishment to take to the air; all of the old frames have now flown, and as such it's sort of a milestone for the program. Boeing can start focusing all resources on new build frames, shaving off weight and optimizing performance. B-LJC should deliver towards the middle of next month, after some more test flights and a fresh paint job. Thanks to Roy Yang for the pics (which show a very dirty airplane).

Also, line 1482 (RC605) VQ-BRJ for AirBridgeCargo rolled off the FAL, as you can see in the top picture. Judging by my rough rollout date records, they're likely already producing new frames at the adjusted 1.75 per month rate.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Seeing Red

There's new red on the chart with more to come, frustratingly for us 747-8 watchers. Line 1478 (RC509) LX-VCI for Cargolux is going to sit in the desert for a stretch before being delivered, alongside two other new 747-8s and one new 747-400 (that's been there way too long!). In the near future, up to seven more frames will join them, with ABC, NCA, and Korean all electing to defer their upcoming frames.

There were no more 747-8 orders out of Paris, but I'm savoring the five that Korean Airlines announced. Hopefully later in the year some of these other rumored orders will manifest themselves.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013


D-ABYI went for her first revenue flight today (that link will only work for about four months after this post). Welcome to the working world "I", may your career last 120,000 hours or more. She's at about 30 hours as of this post; 119,970 to go.

Three frames were up today for test flights: Nippon Cargo line 1479, Cargolux line 1478, and Unclaimed line 1437. Unclaimed is sure hanging around Paine Field for a long time. I'd think she'd be in storage by now. Hopefully that means they're finding her a home...?

An article here has some more detail on 747-8 improvements. A lot we might have heard before. 747 program v-p and general manager Eric Lindblad says that current frames are 5,600 pounds lighter than those originally delivered, and Boeing has identified ways to drop another 1,600 pounds; in all, the savings contribute some 2 percent to operating efficiency. He also says he'd like the total weight loss to reach 10,000 pounds, and perhaps increase the -8I’s range to 8,200 nm, by around 2016. The article also acknowledges that all unfinished frames have been refurbished, so the 747 build team can get back to focusing on building new frames. Well, I guess there's still line 1435.

Come on Paris, give us another 747-8 order!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Korean Wants Five More 747-8Is

Today in Paris, Korean Air and Boeing announced that they've signed a purchase commitment for another five 747-8Is. This is a top up order, as they'd already ordered five, so now they'll have a total of ten. This is great news, as Korean Air has always been a big 747 customer, and it looks like that will continue for a few decades.

Here's the press release.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

NCA Line 1479 First Flight

Line 1479 (RC525) JA15KZ for Nippon Cargo Airlines had a first flight today. This frame is either preparing for delivery or storage. Nippon Cargo has 14 747-8Fs ordered, two of which are already in service. Six more are built or scheduled to be built. NCA plans on taking three frames in the latter half of this year, and then three more next year. That leaves six frames left in the order which have yet to be scheduled for assembly. Due to deferment, one frame, line 1469 (RC524) JA14KZ, sits in storage in the desert. One frame, test frame 2, line 1421 (RC521) JA11KZ, is on the flight line needing a repaint. My prediction is that they'll take lines 1421, 1469, and 1479 this year, and the next three scheduled to be built will move into storage until they're delivered next year. The remaining six will probably be built in 2014/2015 and delivered in 2015/2016.

While taxiing, a giant spider attacks KPAE

787 Line 111 G-ZBJB for British Airways gets ready to fly while JA15KZ prepares for a taxi test.

G-ZBJB takes off, JA15KZ moves into position

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Pending deliveries

Line 1432 (RC572) HZ-AI4 for Saudi Arabian Cargo just went up for a C2 flight, and should deliver any day now.

Lines 1477 (Lufthansa) and 1478 (Cargolux) should both soon be conducting final customer flights too. Other than those two, 748 action has been slow recently. I'm hoping rumors are true and some exciting news comes from the Paris Air Show next week.