Bits and Pieces

This is the sixth of a series of posts from the EAD media day and the Paris Air Show….

There are always bits and pieces picked up at these things that don’t fit anywhere else.

  • We asked several reporters, “What is the headline coming out of this show?” We were universially greeted by long pauses. That, in itself, is the headline
  • What was the best airplane demonstration? To us, it wasn’t the A380 (seen it in action four or five times now) or the military stuff (too loud, not into it anyway). It was the Breitling Lockheed Super Constellation.
  • What really light up Scott Carson’s face? Talking piston airplanes.
  • One industry official who sells airplanes believes rising oil prices has come a year too soon.
  • For 787 fans, the media was notified this week that registration to attend the first flight will begin next week. It’s widely believed that first flight will be the 24th, 25th or 26th. But Boeing traditionally has done first flights on Saturday to allow employees to participate. That would be the 27th.
  • We were in the Boeing media center writing up the report from the tanker briefing, along with other reporters, including Dominic Gates of The Seattle Times. Gates overheard to people from FedEx talking who said they (FDX) had just ordered 15 777s. Given the dearth of orders, this would have been Big News indeed. Dominic shot out of his chair to talk to the people. Alas, they were talking of the previously announced orders. The two were FDX pilots and they were asking Boeing to tour the brand new Air France 777F on display outside the media center.
  • For 747-8 fans: Boeing lowered its 20-year forecast on the Very Large Aircraft (VLA) from 980 to 740, virtually all coming out of VLA freighters. We asked Boeing’s Randy Tinseth was this does for the business case of the 747-8F. “Not a thing,” he said. Boeing now assumes there will be no VLA-F competition (read: no A380F). That airplane is dead, in Boeing’s view.

We’ll add more to this as we clear our mind from the travel fog….

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