Boeing to hike 767F production; may be only first of several

April 25, 2018, © Leeham News: Buried deep within Boeing’s first quarter earnings report is a single, seemingly innocuous sentence:

“Reflecting the strength of the cargo market, we now plan to increase the production rate on the 767 program from 2.5 to 3 per month beginning in 2020.”

There is more to this than meets the eye. It portends potentially big orders and this rate increase may be only the first to come.

UPS, Amazon

The announced rate increase comes right on schedule to market information received by LNC months ago: that the 767 production rate would be increased to 3/mo in January 2020.

Boeing alerted the supply chain to study increases to this and more: to 3/mo in January 2020, 3/5/mo in July and 4/mo in January 2021.

The rate would come down to 3/mo in January 2025 and 2/mo in July, supply chains sources told LNC.

FedEx currently has 56 767Fs on order, UPS four and Unidentified three. But UPS is looking at an order for the Airbus A330-900F, an as-yet unlaunched version of the A330neo, and market intelligence tells LNC the cargo carrier has rights of first refusal for 767Fs should Boeing up production.

Amazon Prime cargo has long been rumored in the market and press reports to be interested in a large order for the 767F. It currently leases 767s from Atlas Air and Air Transport Services Group.

102 Comments on “Boeing to hike 767F production; may be only first of several

  1. AB should start moving the a330neo airframe into their cargo/mrtt markets replacing the ceo… and aim to cease the ceo line asap. Too many options give the airlines more power when negotiating within AB product line I’d imagine, eveb efore BA come into the fray. A neo at ~ceo prices would be a good.

  2. Finally. God, they’re like a slow-moving elephant! To be quite frank, Scott, is it just impossible to go to four per month in January to March next year, and 5 the following year? You’ve got a bunch of customers clamoring for the 767 NOW, or certainly within a year or two! Supposedly, Amazon wants 40 to 50 (beyond the 40 they’re working up to, through Atlas and ATSG) And, where stands United, that supposedly wanted 50 or so (per press reports last fall), to tide them over to the NMA, in the 2025 to. 2027 starting delivery timeframe?

    • @Montana: Nobody said anything about 5/mo. A 767P restart is off the table.

      • Tell me what’s changed since Leeham, 10/19/17: “Boeing Ponders Restart of 767-300ER Passenger Line”? And, if you’ve got potentially a 100+ orders on a short string,why not go to 5 per month production ASAP?

        • As Boeing moves closer to launch of NMA, the need for a bridge airplane declines–assuming a 2024-25 EIS. Besides, Boeing since said it won’t restart the 767P line.

          • Cant imagine GE wanting the CF6 engine production line to change much from its current low level for A330 ( winding down) and B767. The KC-46 uses PW4000s .

  3. Another move by BA trying to throttle the 330NEO.

    The 767 and 777’s are not getting younger, the NEO’s got updated wing and engines. Can’t see a 787F in the near future, and if the oil price goes $75+/barrel?

    • Well, another move by BA to try to sell BA products. I do keep wondering if some minor enhancement to the 76F incorporating 764/KC-46 improvements is needed, but then again the cockpit is essentially a ‘fedex special’ anyway.

      Fuel burn is pretty inconsequential as a component on a handful of Dallas-Memphis rotations a day, relative to a per pound of freight moved on an 80 percent full A330 option.

      • My understanding is the cockpit is a normal old style 767 cockpit.

        I would have thought they would go with the 2C cockpit but maybe not certified yet.

        • I really don’t know at this point. Some of the Rockwell cockpit for fedex was to be retrofitt3d after delivery even I think for some new builds, which I don’t Understand. Maybe it is standardized with other freighters on new orders now, but the kc46, 762c and “standard” 767 freighter cockpits all look somewhat bizarrely unrelated to my eye. A rendering from a few years ago doesn’t look like my recollection of 767 displays:

          • KC46 and the 2C would have the 787 style cockpit.

            I would think the move would also go to the current 767F as its a relatively old quasi steam gauge major switches setup on the overhead.

            It seems not so far.

  4. Basic comment. Interesting that UPS is looking at the 900NEO instead of the 800NEO. One would think Airbus would want to use the platform that is already in-service as a freighter. The 800 also would have greater legs and be closer in size to the B767F.

      • Then why the 767? A 330 should have more volume even the 800 (maybe not as much as a -400?)

        Anyone have the cargo volume for those?

        Was the A330-200F the wrong aircraft?

        • Took a bit. 200F has 1000 CF more volume and 7 tons more capacity.

          300 would have?

          And FedEx has no 747s and those are the max volume queens these days.

        • There is a bit more to deciding what the best aircraft is for your needs than just volume. The A338/A332 has more volume than the 763…but it also more expensive and takes up more ramp space. UPS may feel the additional volume of the A338/A332 over the 763 is not enough to justify its price and adding a new type into their fleet. They may have a different opinion about operating the even larger -900/-300 alongside the 763s.

        • The 330F has a nose low characteristic for ground Ops which makes its a no-go for FedEx. Essentially, load crews would have push cans uphill during loading ops which is inefficient.

        • Tough one, they made a huge commitment to the 8F.

          Those are almost direct competitors. Not sure if the nose flip is a bonus for UPS. Have not seen it used in Anchorage

          FedEx seems very happy with the 777.

          Over the years the flips have been interesting.

          UPS went with factory 757, FedEx had to buy used and convert.

          UPS went with the 767F, FedEx MD10 and 11.

          FedEx now has the lock on the 767F slots.

          UPS added the MD-11 to their fleet (all used)

        • Maybe the 777F is not long for this world as the classic 777 production winds down.

          • they plan to keep making the F as long as it sells with long term plans to go to a 777-8F

            That puts it in the 300 size, so ??? how that all goes as they could have done 300 before.

            Now they have no choice as its the smallest.

            Less desirable as it won’t be able to take the heavy floor loading.

  5. There are a lot of 767s out there.

    Boeing made a lot of passenger types for gap fillers during the 787 debacle.

    It would seem those are ideal candidates for a BCF conversion.

    Be good to have explained why its so popular and the A330 is not, and why a 400F would not be even more popular with the volume driven UPS, FedEx and now Amazon not to mention DHL.

    Can structure gets bandied about but UPS has long done fine with that mix that is not common with the MD-11F and the 747s.

    FedEx the same with less history on the 767.

    DHL in various guises runs 747 and 767 without the common can structure.

    • A330P2F does not have a level floor which is a big issue, the A330F has major nose gear modifications (both structural and aerodynamic) to give it a level floor.

      additionally, per Boeing and Airbus literature, the 767 carries 1 more pallet of cargo on the main deck (24 88×125 pallets 767-300F vs 23 for the A330-200)

      • A330F still doesnt have complete level floor. They went from 1.5 deg slope to 0.5 degree slope.
        “Eventually the choices were boiled down to “two reasonable ones – change the gear and keep the gear bay, or change the gear bay and keep the gear” -keep the existing landing gear won.

        The cabin length of the 767F may have more ‘pallet positions’ but the A330F can carry the standard LD3 containers and has 10 ton more cargo capacity. Plus it has a small courier cabin behind the cockpit.

      • The A330F can carry 22 96 x 125 inch pallets/container side by side.
        The 767-300F can just carry 14 and additional 2 smaller 88 x 125 inch.
        The volume for both aircraft with optimal container is quite the same on main deck (336 m³).

        On the lower deck it is 26 LD3 on A330-200F vs 30 LD2 on 767-300F.
        Volume of LD 2 is about 3.4 m³ while LD3 is about 4.5 m³. So 102 m³ on 767-300F and 117 m³ on A330-200.

        According to my knowledge the A330P2F cargo floor can handle cargo even without a leveled floor.

        • ah, the doc I found that said 23 pallets for the A330 didn’t specify pallet size, Boeing specified 24 88*125 pallets on their documentation.

        • Why does any A330 P2F operator not use a small platform to raise the front landing gear so that floor is flat.

          Cheap solution that could be given away to airports if the flat floor was critical to the operation of the aircraft.

          Aircraft landing gear must be able to handle small inclines.
          3m wide would be big enough to accommodate most pilots driving skills and the front gear.

          Just a thought.

          • All the can sizes do not matter.

            If the can is optimized to the aircraft, then the volume rules

            A330-200F has overall about 1000 CF of more volume.

            You can (pun) put one AMJ on a 767 I believe but wastes lots of space.

            then there are what they call the pancakes with are aluminum baking trays in various sizes you can strap on whatever you want that are optimized to various aircraft widths.

            Particularly y for a Pkg freighter, the volume could be put to use, but they want more?

          • Regarding A330 freighters and sloping floors, see the excerpt below from the 10-29-2009 FlightGlobal article at the link after the excerpt.

            “Airbus will not develop a nose-gear modification for passenger-to-freight conversion of the A330-200, but instead opt for a simple jacking tool to level the fuselage.

            While passenger versions of the A330-200 sit slightly nose-down, the new freighter version needs a level fuselage to aid loading.”


    • “Be good to have explained why its so popular and the A330 is not, and why a 400F would not be even more popular with the volume driven UPS, FedEx and now Amazon not to mention DHL.”

      Feedstock and availability (or the non-availability of it)? And, for the new-built’s, I assume price tag?
      Especially the -400 was not very popular with PAX airlines. Why should one (Boeing) take another fair amount of money to develop another version.

      BTW: DHL, UPS and FedEx have plenty of A300F’s, with DHL (EAT Leipzig) just starting to source A330P2F’s.

      • I saw recently that, with current cockpit upgrades, the Fed Ex A300Fs are “good to go” (planned service) till 2035! (Interesting that parts support for it will presumably still be there in the mid 2020s and beyond!)

        • Well we are still flying B-52s, an A300 is a youngster to those and the KC-135s.

          • Doesn’t matter. they still have very old systems and they are still flying.

            Not all wear and tear take place on ops, time ages things as well.

            and the engines are old and not up to date so the wear and tear on those is much faster than modern ones.

            The operating KIC135s got replaced of the tube engines with CFM engines.

            The AWACs did not as the larger diameter fan and blades bother the radar.

      • fuesioterrapoit:

        As the 400 was in place, making it an F is a pretty low cost change.

        I can see using the 300 until /unless the market called for larger.

        But the tooling is still there to do it and no talk of it.

        And if its volume (and I don’t disagree) then why has it not come up before?

        An A330NEO is going to cost even more.

        Something makes no sense here.


      • What they call Unit Loading Devices. Shaped to fit the contour of a fuselage of a given aircraft.

        767 because of the narrower fuselage has its own “special and unique “can” – I don’t know what its designation is. You can load an AMJ I believe but you waste huge amounts of space.

        I believe MD-11, 777, 747 all can take the AMJ type (half width of the fuselage, ergo, two in each row)

        There is a tall AMJ for the 777 (maybe fits the 747 as well)

        Can structure is the mix of cans and having to shift cargo from one to another for difference aircraft. Adds some complexity.

        FedEx was against it for a long time but the 767s and it was a slam dunk. Not sure what to think of it as an issue.

      • “Cans” refers to containers, whether main deck or belly. Lots of different sizes.

  6. Roll on, 767, roll on
    Your power is getting our stuff on our porch
    Roll on, 767, roll on

    • There are not enough Guthrie references. To paraphrase a related Guthrie, don’t litter.

    • Agreed… this is working for Boeing… keep it rolling as clearly customers want it or find the best deal!

      In the meantime, AB sorts out their senior management issues (read: they got canned because of numerous contract win ‘irregularities’).

      Replacing the top management ‘smoothly’ but proactively is a typical supervisory board (aufsichtrat) approach to preempt harsher civil/criminal penalties that would be even more destabilizing.

  7. Meanwhile — and off-topic 😉 — RR and Airbus intend to collaborate on developing the UltraFan engine, which would seem to further the segmentation of the trans-Atlantic divide on large turbofan engines, as currently seen on wide-bodies.

    It’s interesting to note that a 30,000 lbs of thrust UltraFan engine — i.e. bypass ratio of 15:1 — would have a 90-inch wide fan, and that such an engine would still fit under the current A320neo wing — with sufficient ground clearance. In contrast, the current PW-1100G engine on the has an 81-inch wide fan and a bypass ratio of 12:1. Hence, I’d not be too surprised if Airbus is contemplating putting an UltraFan engine on a Mk2 version of the A320neo post 2025.

    Rolls-Royce (RR.L) and Airbus (AIR.PA) have signed a deal to collaborate on development of the UltraFan, a new engine that is intended to 25 percent more fuel efficient than the earliest version of the Trent engine, the British company said on Wednesday. The companies, already long-term partners on projects such as the A350 passenger jet powered by the Trent XWB engine, will work together on aircraft architecture to test the engine and on maximizing its efficiency.

    “It is great to have Airbus expertise to further strengthen our ability to deliver this important development program,” said Andy Geer, chief engineer on the UltraFan, said in a statement.

    Rolls-Royce added that UltraFan is a “scalable” design, meaning it will be suitable for widebody or narrowbody aircraft. Currently Rolls only makes engines for widebody jets.

    • I guess the snarky answer I can’t resist is that this version could be in reliable service by 2035.

      • @Texl1649

        Well, that sort of answer is really not that surprising. There seems to have been a lot of FUD recently directed at RR, originating stateside.

        • Not just “stateside”. What does it say about your customer service and concern when your major Chilean customer pretty much decides it’s nesessary to fly all its RR engined 787-8s 6,000 miles away for storage and wait for (delayed) maintenance?

          • @MontanaOsprey

            A stateside overstating of a RR engine crisis is not all that surprising. Apparently, RR is seen as being “to close to” Airbus.

            Despite the current problems with the Trent 1000-Cs compressors, it doesn’t mean that progress and innovation stops at RR, as @Texl1649 was alluding to.

            It’s important to note, though, that the the Trent 1000-TEN and TXWB engines are not affected. They don’t share the same type of blisks as that of the Trent 1000-C engine. Meanwhile, RR is working on the problem in order to both ensure longer engine durability and that any issues can be tackled before any kind of failure. In fact, when was the last time someone died in an accident on a RR-powered LCA?

            Pumping unrestricted investments into immature technological R&D can certainly improve the pace of progress, but cannot guarantee the solution of all problems inherent in new technologies. The current problems on the Trent 1000-C is IMJ in large part due to the ridiculous short development schedule of the 787. According to the original plans at 787 programme launch in April, 2004, the engine OEMs would have their engines up and flying on testbed aircraft by early spring 2007. Hence, the main responsibility of this mess lies squarely with Boeing.

          • Way off topic.

            And you really do not get the magnitude of the mess this is.

            A 787NEO should not have occurred for 20 years or longer.

            And the Trent 1000 has had issues with all A/B/C in various forms and they did not understand the root (pun intended) cause.

            Its not only a mess but a highly dangerous one and like the P&W, it should be grounded unless it has two known good engines on it, even for a 2 mile hop.

          • @TransWorld

            Hysteria is a deeply perilous phenomena — and with respect to the problems with the Trent-1000, too many observers stateside seem to have had few, or no qualms about jumping on the hysteria bandwagon.

          • @OV-099: Cute. Let’s sidestep any comment on RR’s LATAM disaster, and, wait for it: “It’s all Boeing’s fault.” Since you “went there”: I’ll go ahead and grant you Boeing WAS at fault: They let their customers choose RR for engines! (LOL) And, well all is said and done: A billion dollar plus RR fiasco, and a worldwide blackening of its rep, especially in New Zealand, Singapore, Japan, and Latin America.

          • @MontanaOsprey


            LATAM, apparently, is leasing three A330s — powered by Rolls Royce Trent 700 engines — from Wamos Air. 😉


            As for your continued hysterics; despite the problems with the Trent-1000-Cs, RR continues to have a very good reputation in Singapore (Trent 500, Trent, 700, Trent 800, Trent 900 and Trent XWB), Latin America (Trent-700 and Trent XWB), New Zealand (Trent-800) and Japan (Trent 700).

            Finally, it’s interesting to note that Airbus and Boeing have been responding differently to engine problems:

            Airlines note that Airbus has PW sending new engines off the production line straight to the customers with Airplanes on the Ground, known as AOGs. New production A320neo family airplanes are parked around the Toulouse and Hamburg airports, engineless because the powerplants are going to the airlines with AOGs. On the other hand, airlines with 787s that are AOG due to issues with the Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 engines, complain that Boeing hasn’t taken a similar action.


          • OV-O99:

            For you to contend that the RR debacle is a US derived matter of Hysteria is about as out of touch with the earth as our now all to infamous El Presidente.

            Your counter that the A330 has Trent 700 engines? You really think that a proven engine that has been reliable has any relevance compared to an engine that can shuck (and has) its vanes in a heartbeat?

            You clearly lack any mechanical knowledge or understanding of the situation and are unable to make rational arguments or comparisons.

            You will note that I fully agreed with India stopping P&W GTF flights as the lip seal was suddenly killing an engine, and a killed engine means the other one has to run.

            You clearly cannot spate something like a long term issue like a combustor wear out that can be tracked and corrected before it is an issue vs one where fan blades fly off engines stopping the engine and at risk of an A380 like almost disasters of Qantas.

            All you have achieved here is showing how hyper partisan you are and not the least bit interested in the people who live or die with the decisions made in aviation.

            Branding you what you are is both beneath my integrity as well as what Leeham rightfully allows.

            What I can say is you are not worth reading and banish you to arena of biting insects.

          • @TransWorld

            “For you to contend that the RR debacle is a US derived matter of Hysteria is about as out of touch with the earth as our now all to infamous El Presidente.”

            Oh, really.

            The issue here is that much of the stateside criticism directed at RR smacks too much of hysteria — i.e. creating FUD, throwing it around as facts and calling into question the technical competence of RR. Ringing any bells?

            “Your counter that the A330 has Trent 700 engines? You really think that a proven engine that has been reliable has any relevance compared to an engine that can shuck (and has) its vanes in a heartbeat?”

            You seem to refer to my response to @MontanaOsprey — who hyperbolically claimed that RR has suffered a “worldwide blackening of its reputation” in Latin America, among other places, while overstating and exaggerating RR’s supposed LATAM “disaster” — and where I merely pointed out that LATAM, in fact, is leasing Trent-700 powered A330, suggesting that RR’s reputation in Latin America may not be all that bleak.

            Now, wouldn’t you agree that using hyperbolic language and using untimely words such as “disaster” (i.e. LATAM “disaster”), actually sounds a lot like the infamous El Presidente?

            “You clearly lack any mechanical knowledge or understanding of the situation and are unable to make rational arguments or comparisons.”

            On the contrary. What I’m questioning is what IMJ seems to be the lack of stateside nuance about the problems facing RR with the Trent 1000.

            As for “lacking mechanical knowledge or understanding of the situation”; I’d be curious to know from an authority on turbofan engines, how exactly the Trent 1000-TEN powered 787 supposedly is a “787NEO that should not have occurred for 20 years or longer”.

            Ah, silly me, I’ve been thinking all along that a “neo” engine meant an “all new engine”…..

            “This is not a roll-up of other package improvements. The TEN is around a 70-75 per cent part change from the package ‘C’ version in service today. The LP system turbomachinery is largely unaffected but it is basically a new core and new associated systems,” says Gareth Jones, Chief Engineer Trent 1000.


            “You clearly cannot spate something like a long term issue like a combustor wear out that can be tracked and corrected before it is an issue vs one where fan blades fly off engines stopping the engine and at risk of an A380 like almost disasters of Qantas.

            Actually, the uncontained engine failure on Qantas Flight 32 was not caused by a fan blade failure, but with an intermediate pressure turbine disc. In fact, all turbofan engines are designed and tested to contain a fan blade failure. However, in the event of a full fan disc failure, or turbine disc failure, the mass and energy of the assembly cannot reasonably be contained. I’m surprised, though, that someone claiming expertise on turbofan engines is seemingly unable to distinguish between these two type of failures.

            It’s interesting to note, though, while you keep hammering RR, you seem to gloss over lethal uncontained engine failures of GE and P&W engines. At least, nobody died on Qantas Flight 32.

            “All you have achieved here is showing how hyper partisan you are and not the least bit interested in the people who live or die with the decisions made in aviation.”

            Ok, what do we have here: False-allegations, hyperbole and a personal attack claiming that I’m supposedly not interested “in the people who live or die with the decisions made in aviation”. Has anyone told you that it would appear as if you have a lot in common with number 45?

            “Branding you what you are is both beneath my integrity as well as what Leeham rightfully allows.

            After all of your personal attacks, it would appear as if you haven’t got much credibility left — but by all means, why don’t you say what you wanna say?

            “What I can say is you are not worth reading and banish you to arena of biting insects.”

            Banishing people — that’s what Trump wants to do. I’m confident he’d be happy if you told him where that arena of biting insects is located.

          • OV-O99:

            You might as well not reply, as noted your posts are not worth reading.

            At best you are technically illiterate.

            Certainly not a real aviationist.

          • @TransWorld

            Yet another personal attack, and you’re still here?

            Hmm, you just can’t help yourself, can you?

    • New wing and landing gear upgrades/changes to accommodate the UF with PW1100G ground clearance?

      Was wondering what the fan diameter of a 50-60Klb UF will be for a “MoM”?

    • Since Airbus halted the A321++ it makes some sense to invite RR for the A322 design evolution. With CFMI & PWA having their hands full with the present neo deliveries and shop visits RR could ease the pressure with a 37-43k Ultrafan design with a core Engine sized to fit the 797 as well.
      RR design engineering I suspect are done issuing drawings and spec’s for the T1000 C-package replacement parts and could sink their teeth into this partly EU funded new Engine. Having a flying Engine on a A321++ testbed will reassure Boeing that the present problems will not pop up and be more like the 757 RB211-535 success when the PW2000 went thru its early pains.

    • Does RR have the collective corporate commercial and technical ballast to handle a successful high volume SA engine?

      Is the company capable of producing a high volume SA engine after being out of the market for so long?

      Has it recovered from the loss of work from its JV SA engine?

      I think it shareholders want it to get back in the market but is it ready? Recent experience suggest it struggles to walk and chew gum at the same time.

      • Its hard telling what is really going on.

        The Kludge and patch of the Trent 1000 says no, but the so called XWB looks to be doing ok.

        The Tent whatever on the A380 has been less than steller in maint and fuel burn and issues there as well when they tried to fix that. All quiet lately as they all go to Emirates now and TK is keeping his trap shut. After all the bragging I can make a well educated guess it did not work out that well.

        High volume, it would be painful, you can see what P&W is going through.

    • Works for me. Opens up the 400 (other than the lame duck A400 military) as number up and down.

      Boeing has to figure out eventual where they go. 797 is the end of the line in the 700 numbers.

      • Have to be 909. Wasn’t the 808 their canned supersonic airliner? Then 388, dud, 788, dud, not to mention 318, 338, 358, 748, probably 778. The only really sucessful “8” came last century, in the 21st century 8 is bad luck. So much for the China century. Even the Chinese are avoiding 8, come to think of it, 919, 929!!!

      • Not really, they can switch to letters. Like 7A7 or 7E7 for Embraer…

      • Decimal count is finished but not hexadecimal or just use something else between the sevens.

    • Oh – news to me. A210 or A230 look a bit weird at first, to be honest,
      If true, another hint that Airbus has – contrary to some naysayers’ beliefs – every intention of making the CSeries a successfull programme, rather than shutting in down to eliminate competition.

        • Touché.
          But no, not like Boeing and the 717.
          The two cases aren’t really comparable, though – Boeing wanted to merge with MDD, and the MD-95 came as part of that deal, being an end-of-the-line revamp of a venerable old family of planes.
          Airbus explicitly buys the CSeries for what it is. And yes, I know the initial price is low, but they’re building another FAL for it, which is an investment out of their own pockets that far exceeds what Boeing ever invested in the MD-95/717.

          • Well I would say $1 is low!!!!!!! (grin)

            Branding of a new entity with the product from the merge is a serious issue.

            I would be tempted to go with a Modern and higher number 510 and 530 (leave the 400 group to the like of the disastrous A400 and future military failure aircraft from future Airbus (grin).

  8. I still have the song going through my mind.

    “Why, why why, Delaila, why why etc”

    If volume drives then there should have been a 400F.

    If an A330-900F has appeal, then an A400F should have as well and been asked for.

    A330PCF could be managed by a special block on the tarmac. Drive up on it like a car ramp and you are where you need to be.

    • Volume is only now becoming king due to the growth of online commerce where the average mix of items weigh less and are individually packaged. Normal bulk freight would have small items packed tightly, say a dozen to each box etc.
      The A330 PCF hasnt picked up as they are newer and in demand still as passenger jets.

      • This has always made me wonder, that if weight is not the biggest factor, why the freight companies haven’t taken a fleet of Belugas or Dreamlifters and crammed them full of containers on some kind of track system…

        • I would think because these are very high dollar cost, “small pool” variants -designed specifically for specialized, very high dollar manufacturer’s cargo. Before doing anything with these type a/c, you’d presumably see a flurry of B747-8F orders!

        • @sam

          The main cargo decks of both the Belugas and the Dreamlifters are not pressurised. Hence, regular package freight would have to be shipped in uniquely pressurised containers — an expensive proposition.

          • An-124 is very popular for its size and weight carrying characteristics. But no one is doing it for knick- knacks bought on Amazon.
            The C-130 was certified for civilian buyers but I think it only was popular for outsize cargo and or rough airstrips. A lot of the ex soviet turboprop Antonovs have ended up as civil cargo carriers in Russia/ Asia/Africa

          • OV-099 has not a clue, regular package freight could care less about pressure.

            The Super Guppy types are awfull on fuel. The 747 D Lifter can barely make Anchorage from Japan.

            The Super lifters only work due to the very high value of the contents.

          • AN-124 can carry (easily) outsides cargo and does 787 parts on come kind of contract basis when the 747 DL is not available. It can carry tanks so the deck is extremely capable of dense loads.

            It has a very heavy deck that can accommodate large generators and pumps and any other equipment that is outsized.

            But its very high value and the transport cost is not an object of issue.

            Emergency lift to Fukisima with those huge German made boom pumps. Price was not an object.

            Airlift into Africa with a load of generators where the road system is atrocious.

            Its all about the economics.

            And package freight has been a big factor for along time with UPS, DHL, FedEx.

            Not answered to me is why they have not clamored for the A330-300 or the 767-400.

            Amazon is a new adder to this but the volume vs weight has been there all along.

            That is why UPS and FEDEX were the only ones that wanted the A380.

            They could bulk it out and not go overweight.

          • @TransWorld

            I’m not surprised by yet another ad hominem attack, but it is interesting to note, though, that for someone claiming to be an insider to the industry, is still surprisingly unaware of the fact that all cargo holds must be pressurised, unless the aircraft flies below 10,000 feet or the type of cargo is restricted to no gels, pastes, lotions, liquid/solid mixtures and the content of pressurised containers — e.g. toothpaste, hair gel, drinks, soups, syrups, perfume, shaving foam, aerosols and other items of similar consistency.

            I would be surprised though, if the Weleda after shave balm that I recently purchased from Amazon was shipped overland.


            Of course, at higher altitudes the atmospheric pressure drops and if the cargo hold is unpressurised, liquid contents in bottles would tend to burst causing possible damage to the cargo and/or aircraft.


            One of the conditions concerns pressure variations as shown in Part 4, Introductory Notes, Note 3. This note sets a value drop to 68 kPa and covers transportation in pressurised cargo holds only, which equals to 3 000 meters flight altitude non- pressurised cargo hold. Modern cargo aircraft with non-pressurised cargo hold climb up to 10 000 meters and pressure drops in the cargo holds to 24 kPa. This pressure reduction will tend to cause discharge of liquid contents or bursting of the receptacles or packaging during flight, for receptacles or packaging tested for transport in pressurized cargo holds only.

    • The A400M has been an ongoing, unmitigated disaster! The funniest part was AB being like the black sheriff in Blazing Saddles, trying to renegotiate its contract through OCCAM! “He’s got a gun to his head boys!” (See YouTube for the clip: Like AB to OCCAM, buyer’s management agency).

        • Oh, I forgot to mention the V-22 Osprey. While originally intended to provide a unique mix of agility, speed, and range, the tilt-rotor aircraft has been persistently criticized as wildly expensive, ineffective, and unsafe.

          • Development problems all of them.
            The development problems of the C-130J when it was introduced -late- and the earlier C-17 problems have been forgotten.
            The earlier C-130A when it was introduced was thought it would break Lockheed as the first 7 0r 8 production models had to have the entire rear fuselage rebuilt.

    • I don’t debate that UPS and FedEx may have a growing need for larger aircraft in their fleets, but I would suggest that this is not the same thing as them always wanting to buy the very largest aircraft available, or wanting to have most aircraft in their fleets be of very large size.

      What is the most numerous single aircraft type in the FedEx or FedEx feeder fleet? It is the voluminous leviathan of the airways known to mankind as the Cessna SUPER Cargomaster 208B, aka the delivery truck with wings, a single engine turboprop that seats 9 to 11 when configured for passengers instead of cargo. See the link below for a picture of this giant with wings.

      The 4 most numerous aircraft types in the FedEx and FedEx feeder fleet according to Wikipedia.

      Type/Number of Aircraft/Unfilled Orders
      Cessna 208B / 239 / 0
      757-200SF /119 / 0
      A300-600RF / 68
      767-300ERF / 56 / 58

      The four most numerous aircraft types in the UPS fleet according to Wikipedia.
      757-200PF / 75 / 0
      767-300ERF / 62 / 4
      A300-600RF / 52 / 0
      MD-11F / 37 / 0

      For comparison, here are the fleet numbers for the largest aircraft in the FedEx and UPS fleets.

      777F: 33 + 16 orders

      747-8: 5 + 23 orders
      747-400F: 11
      747-BCF: 2

      • Correction to the four most numerous aircraft types in the FedEx and FedEx feeder fleet. Number four should have been the MD-11F. Here are the five most numerous types.

        Cessna 208B / 239 / 0
        757-200SF /119 / 0
        A300-600RF / 68
        MD-11F: 57 / 0
        767-300ERF / 56 / 58

        • AP: It would take all of the 208s to fill a 777!

          But FedEx has no use for 747s and UPS so far the same for 777

          The reality is each one of those birds fills a need.

          At issue is why if an A330-900 is attractive, would a 767-400 not be? And asked for.

          It may just be a ploy. As the A330-200F is available , Boeing could say just go buy those.

          While a few like them, so far no one has jumped into them big time.

  9. A question (my lack of knowledge), I haven’t read about major Eastern freight only airlines in the mold of UPS, etc, are they there?

    An 339F could find appeal in the Eastern markets in the long run?

  10. Does anyone know how the A330 came to have a sloping floor in the first place?Why is a 1.5 degree slope such a problem?

    • my guess would be that when they evolved the A330/340 from the A310/300 they kept the A300 nose gear and lengthened the main gear for engine ground clearance (they were building a new wing so had flexibility on the main gear design, but not a new section 41 and so stuck with the legacy nose gear)

      sort of the reverse of what Boeing did with the 737Max

      • A for the slope, moving cans around in an aircraft is a dicey business.

        Slope makes it a much bigger issue.

        I was involved in a ramp slope question and that was only 1.2 degrees.

          • Yep, drainage. I did the slope calcs and came up with my data.

            then I found a plan (buried deep) that listed the slope.

            Mine was very accurate.

            Sorry guys, you are stuck with it.

  11. Is Boeing hoping the -2C/767F will provide enough
    Profits to Offset the huge Overruns on the -46?

    • Odd question.

      a 2C is a different beast than the 767F.

      Its being certified but I don’t think anyone has even hinted at buying it.

      Being shorter than a 300 it looses volume.

      As Boeing will build 178 or so of the KC46 I expect they will make money at it eventually.

      I never read a good reason for the 2C size, it may have had to do with meeting contract minimums and not going over.

      On the other hand common production would be a benefit but I don’t think Boeing had a clue the 767 would keep selling. FedEx got a fantastic deal s a gap filler to keep the 767 in production while the KC46 was getting built and certified and approved for volume production.

      I would think that there would be a lot of 767 pax for BCF feedstock.

      All most interesting.

      • Some small part of the -2C equation for FedEx is the built-in used market demand for the air-frame and their parts since the KC-46 will last at least as long as the 707. KC-135s have supported a price floor for 707 frames and parts for a long time, including dozens of 2nd hand civilian to military conversions (including the in the USAF which is pretty unusual).

      • I thought the 2C version was to allow for the weight of the boom at the end. Shortening the fuselage a bit up front solved the balance problem as the 2C is in between the -200 and -300.

        • I can’t imagine it was an issue but I could be wrong.

          I do know they wanted the larger wing, they could have gone with the 200 but did not.

          Seems something more compelling drove them to change it even if fairly easily done.

          Booms have been hung on 707, A330, DC10 etc without that ever benign an issue.

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