Boeing adds 737 MAX 7 to at-risk status with MAX 10 for cancellation over FAA certification

By Scott Hamilton

Oct. 26, 2022, © Leeham News: Boeing may terminate the 737 MAX 7 program if the deadline for a cockpit warning system is not extended, blocking certification.

Boeing 737-7 MAX. Credit: Boeing.

CEO David Calhoun previously said the 737 MAX 10 program might be certified.

In a federal filing of the 10Q quarterly report today, Boeing added that the MAX 7’s future is in doubt.

“If the Aircraft Certification, Safety and Accountability Act (ACSAA) deadline is not amended [beyond Dec. 27 this year] and we otherwise fail to achieve certification, we might choose to discontinue the MAX 7 and/or MAX 10, resulting in future earnings charges and other financial impacts. We may be able to partially mitigate some of these financial impacts to the extent that customers exercise substitution rights into MAX 8 and/or MAX 9 aircraft,” Boeing wrote in its 10Q.

Certification targets

“The 737 MAX 7 and MAX 10 models are currently going through Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) certification activities. We are following the lead of the FAA as we work through the certification process, and currently expect the 737 MAX 7 to be certified in 2022 or 2023 and enter service in 2023, and the 737 MAX 10 to begin FAA certification flight testing in 2022 or 2023 and enter service in 2023 or 2024,” Boeing wrote.

“However, Section 116 of the December 2020 ACSAA prohibits the FAA from issuing a type certificate to aircraft after December 27, 2022, unless the aircraft’s flight crew alerting system meets certain specifications. With safety as our primary focus, we continue to work to meet all current regulatory requirements to support certification and are also engaged in discussions with stakeholders concerning a possible extension to the ACSAA’s December 27, 2022, deadline.”

Calhoun remained optimistic on the earnings call today.

“…We’re progressing on our development programs. The [737]-7, the [737]-10, the 777-9 and the [777]-8 freighter, all of these are progressing well. As everybody knows, we are up against a deadline here at the end of the year.

“We remain confident that we can get an extension of that deadline because this is the safe answer, and we’ve heard from airlines, we’ve heard from pilots, we’ve heard from our workers, associates, and we know that the FAA has been putting in the work to certify these airplanes. So we remain not just hopeful but confident that we can get this across the finish line. And then those airplanes as many of you know complete that narrow-body portfolio in a way that allows us to compete head to head with our important competitor Airbus.”

Aircraft in backlog

Boeing currently has about 27 MAX 7s and three MAX 10s in inventory. There are about 250 MAX 7s and 600 MAX 10s in the backlog. (Announced orders which are not yet firm bring the latter to more than 900, LNA estimates.)

Boeing’s 10Q notes the continuing uncertainty of the approximately 130 737s stored for delivery to China. “The Civil Aviation Administration of China issued an airworthiness directive in the fourth quarter of 2021 outlining actions required for airlines to return to service. There is uncertainty regarding timing of return to service and resumption of deliveries in China which are still subject to final regulatory approvals.”


96 Comments on “Boeing adds 737 MAX 7 to at-risk status with MAX 10 for cancellation over FAA certification

  1. Well, the 757 had EICAS 40 years ago, so there’s no valid excuse as to why BA didn’t incorporate it into the 737 long ago — e.g. when developing the NG.

    The company has known about the approaching Dec 27 deadline for 2 years now, but it didn’t act to address the matter.

    If sacrificing the MAX-7 and/or -10 is the price that is to be paid for being remiss, then so be it.

    There’ll probably be plenty of conversions from MAX-7 to -8 and from MAX-10 to -9, so poor-mouthing is misplaced.

      • Did customers want MCAS?
        Did they want the 757 and 767 to be discontinued?

        BA doesn’t always give customers what they “want”, and is well able to give them things that they don’t “want”.

      • @goforride

        True, there are some here not old enough to remember back to 9/11/01, it gutted the airline industry.

          • Was talking about the 757 sales and production.

            But I will agree with you on this rare occasion, that Boeing should have incorporated the 757 nose and cockpit into the NG.

    • the Max does have systems maintenance digital displays

        • EICAS is early 1980’s vintage – dating back to the 757 and 767. 737NG displays are similar to the contemporaneous 747-400 and 777. Existing MAX systems displays are similar to the much newer 787

          FBW permeates the entire airplane from nose to tail and out to every control surface. It has never been incorporated in any derivative of any in-production airplane.
          The 777 and 787 are FBW; previous Boeing airplanes are not.

          • Mitch:

            While I concur on most of your statement, Airbus did switch the A300 and or the A310 to FBW.

            The MAX has an advanced glass cockpit and I have yet to see anyone cite or list an accident based on the alerting system.

            In fact I have seen numerous A320 as well as others crashes that occurred despite the so called modern alert system telling the pilots what the problem was and they ignored it.

          • Mitch….
            Point of order.
            The max spoilers are FBW where the NGs were not.

          • Transworld is right. The FBW system is a great advance. However on Airbus planes it can ‘switch off’ most of its features and it seems that crashes have occurred because the pilots werent aware of their current ‘flying mode’ or even worse operating the side sticks like they were aerobatic pilots. Other times like the Qantas A380 engine failure the avalanche of critical ‘digital message displays’ almost overwhelmed the crew , their immense pilot experience and luckily with check captains in cockpit they handled it all.

            Human factors are no less of a problem with FBW it seems than the old manual system and lots of coloured warning lights

            The underlying issue seems that ‘pilot overload

  2. Boeing will receive exemptions for the -7 and -10 in the nick of time. Guaranteed.

    • Also from foreign regulators?

      Moreover, even if the US Congress grants a waiver, that doesn’t mean that the FAA will certify the aircraft.
      Look how long the 777X is waiting for a TIA, and the FAA isn’t budging.

      • Agree with Stealth66.

        This “at risk” announcement times perfectly just before the end of the year. This is all designed to get the clown show in WDC in gear.

        Calhoun is bluffing!
        They didn’t move corporate to WDC for nothing.
        Frankly I don’t think they care about EASA.

        • Airdoc,
          Something people dont seem to be connecting the dots on is that the A320XLR certification delay recently announced may have linkage with the legislation congress passed in the wake the MAX crash. There is a subsection in the law aimed at ending the 737 endless derivative process by redefining the major/minor change process and forcing the FAA to update them. The new reg proposals cleared public comments and the final issuance is due very soon. Depending on whats in it, there may very well be some holes poked in the bilateral certification process the MAX so severely strained…….I suspect the Airbus pause is related to the issuance of the new regs. It would be terrible if the XLR was deemed to exceed the scope of change the new command media is defining. Imagine the mongolian cluster if the FAA rules say it exceeds the new score of being a derivative and must refly the stuff sold on similarity……. Just a bit of food for thought

    • Sorry, extension won’t happen as the PR aspects in congress would look abominable and our solons are too risk adverse. And of course B will love standardizing on the 9/10 to realize economies thereof.

      Instead expect hive off of defense businesses in new entity – perhaps with some govt ownership/guarantees- and of course a major haircut for lenders – not to mention shareholders who are already bald but don’t know it yet!

      C’est la vie…

  3. Money over safety, with the help of lobbying in congress, well done Boeing!

    But the market may become limited to USA

    • EU carriers have ordered only a very small number of MAX -10s (18, for TUI). Asian carriers have ordered more (200, plus 25 for lessors). 75 have been ordered by Gulf carriers.
      It’s predominantly popular in tbe US.

      The MAX-7 has not sold outside the US and Canada.

        • Well, they haven’t ordered it yet, have they? Most LCCs in Europe use Airbus (just like in the US: Spirit, Frontier, Breeze, JetBlue)

          Ryanair walked away on pricing (or, at least, that’s what they said).

          • Ryanair are an absolute slam-dunk for large numbers of the 737-10. They just need Boeing to offer them at a price that’s low enough. Boeing is in a stronger position than Ryanair when it comes to those negotiations.

            It was Airbus (Leahy) who walked away from Ryanair as they considered they were only being asked to bid in order for O’Leary to get better prices from Boeing.

          • @ Stealth66

            “They just need Boeing to offer them at a price that’s low enough.”

            We saw in yesterday’s Q3 results that BA no longer has the luxury of offering low pricing.

            Moreover: WizzAir’s A321XLRs will allow it to fly from Europe to Asia — leaving Ryanair far behind. The MAX-10 can’t help O’Leary where that’s concerned.

  4. I told Boeing to Cancel the 737 MAX [all versions] on March 10, 2019, I told Boeing to cancel the 737 MAX [all versions] on October 29, 2018 —

    AND I told Boeing to cancel all version of the 737 MAX in 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014 and 2013, when it became CRYSTAL CLEAR to everyone that the MAX Design was unairworthy .. — and that the PILOTS would be unable to use muscle strength to overcome the automated flight controls ..

    But did Boeing Listen to the advice of an extremely experienced FAA A&P, IA, Pilot and Engineer with 30 years of experience – 25 of which is on Boeing Heavy Commercial Jets? No .. Did Boeing hire me as their new CEO? – which they should have done in 2020, instead of Calhoun , and which they should have done in 2015, instead of Muilenburg – No ..

    Boeing made a HUGE MISTAKE not hiring me as their CEO in 2015 ..

    Because as Boeing’s CEO, I would have IMMEDIATELY cancelled the all 737 MAX Production and Engineering Lines. Rebooted the 757 for Production and began development of improvements to the 757 for better fuel efficiency and lower operating costs — and I would have Made Boeing MILLIONS in profit ..

    Brad Hartliep
    A&P – IA – Pilot – and Aerospace Engineer
    35 YEARS of Experience on F-16, F-15, DC9, MD80, B707, B720, B727, B737, B747, B757, Restoration of WW2 Boeing B-17 to Airworthy Flying Condition, Restoration of WW2 NAA B-25 and T-6 to Airworthy Flying Condition ..

    And the GREATEST Choice For Boeing CEO
    than every Boeing CEO in the last 20 years ..

    • you are a self centered egotistical idiot – no wonder they didn’t hire you as the CEO. Hindsight is always 20-20.

      • Guess I have to join Bruce in his idiocy though it has nothing to do with air worthy of the 737. Its fine.

        That said it clearly was at the end of its trail back in the so called Classic offering and should have been replaced.

        But the money went to share buy backs and dividends. So yea, Bruce has the right approach though I think the 757 was done by the time they terminated it.

      • How can you possibly call this gentleman that? Especially with the mess they are in now. It seems that Boeing needs a true pilot and engineer in a major leadership position. I think that would end up bringing a lot of credibility to their product line and make passengers feel significantly safer on their aircraft. Knowing this person has in depth technical knowledge of aircraft so that the proper airliners are built to be safe and reliable.

    • Nope! Boeing would have been bought out if you had become the CEO. Your decision to cancel the max in 2015 would have caused a massive plunge in the company’s stock price. Boeing would have needed massive bailouts when the pandemic hit, giving EU extra leverage to impose tariffs against Boeing. You like many other technical experts in this forum has greatly underestimated the effects Boeing has with it’s stock buybacks. Yes, Boeing may have avoided the entire max disaster and 354 people would be alive right now. But let’s not forget this doesn’t solves your B787 issues. Even more so, you might be dealing with new set of challenges with the new B737 successor. The pandemic would have hit just as the new aircraft is ramping up it’s production. And to top that off, the B777X would have been shelved since the clean sheet development would have drained a lot of resources. The 300+ order for the B777x would then have gone to Airbus.
      So NO. Boeing would be worse off if you had become the CEO.

      • @Guess

        I guess BA is quite safe, at least for now, from being acquired.

        It has successfully shown the world what precarious position they are in: their two main businesses – BCA & BDS – are deep in financial sinkholes their own making – MAX crashes that led to the grounding and $55 billion debt, fixed priced contracts on the defense side that resulted in quarter after quarter bigger and bigger charges. The MAX production ramp is further pushed back, clearance of 37 further postponed to 2025. Execution execution execution, they show us they’re run by a bunch of clowns (sorry I can’t find any better word). Who wants to buy???

  5. “If the Aircraft Certification, Safety and Accountability Act (ACSAA) deadline is not amended [beyond Dec. 27 this year] and we otherwise fail to achieve certification, we might choose to discontinue the MAX 7 and/or MAX 10, resulting in future earnings charges and other financial impacts. We may be able to partially mitigate some of these financial impacts to the extent that customers exercise substitution rights into MAX 8 and/or MAX 9 aircraft,” Boeing wrote in its 10Q.”

    Most interesting: also MAX-7, now.

    • Nice to have you back after your prolonged absence.
      And what interesting timing: right between the BA and AB Q3 financial results.
      LNA is treating us this week to a veritable avalanche of interesting articles.

    • Hello!


      I note that BA has added 13 MAX 7 to its inventory in Q3, now total according to Scott above is standing at 27 (MAX 7). I wonder if it’s the best allocation if engines esp. when the mgmt kept blaming delivery/production-ramp miss due to engine shortage.

  6. Who missed the deadline, Boeing or the FAA? If the FAA is at fault, how is penalizing Boeing logical?

    • How do you conclude that the FAA missed the deadline?
      BA has been dragging its feet — it still is.
      What’s holding up those SSAs?

      • What makes you think the FAA airline manufacturer safety unit has the resources to handle even the certification of a derivative ?
        For a few decades they have had light oversight and relied on the manufacturers, now they want far more detail but cant say what the detail should be ( but might might know it when they see it ).
        The Max 8 and 9 have been certified, so they are between a rock and a hard place to somehow want different details for planes that are a few passenger rows bigger or smaller

        Airbus will find out the same issues will delay, even more than they have, the A321XLR

        • The A321XLR is 6 months delayed, and certification is motoring along: the third test aircraft did its RTO last week.

          The FAA has plenty of resources: it has far more staff than the EASA.
          It keeps asking BA for SSAs, but it either doesn’t receive them, or the ones it receives are sub-par.
          The FAA has also complained about the sub-standard liasons that it has to deal with within BA.

          Stop trying to shift the blame.

          • The FAA does everything from staffing control towers and ATC centers and also certifies and regulates pilots , aircraft spares amoung other things.
            Most of these things are still done by Europes individual countries

            The FAA Passenger aircraft safety section is probably on a tiny section with a few hundred staff

          • DoU
            “A few hundred staff”

            The EASA gets the job done perfectly adequately with 800 staff.

            Then again, the EASA doesn’t have to babysit/spoonfeed Airbus.

        • Wasn’t there a FAA letter saying BA was missing key documents for the MAX 7 certification??

          Oops. So much alt-reality spewed here.

          • There’s a whole string of FAA letters — relating to the MAX, the 777X, and the general quality of liasons at BA.

            Maybe BA realizes that the systems on the MAX-7/-10 are sub-par: could that be why it’s not producing the required SSAs?

    • Ted:

      A good question though from what I am reading, its Boeing not meeting the requirements the FAA issued.

      My personnel take is its a cultural issue for Boeing. They got used to just handing stuff to the FAA and getting a sign off, it became the norm.

      Now the Homework has to be done right or Boeing gets issued an incomplete.

      I watched a number of organizations in their dysfunctional nature. Fixing it is extremely difficult.

      In one case on a very low level I told the manager exactly what I intended to do to correct crew behavior. While I was TDY helping out another part of the company, I was fired from my position.

      The worst problem child was promoted into it. It all had to do with how much whining and bellyaching the manager got as people were made to do what they were paid for. But while I was in charge, he was forced to be productive. You just have to not give.

      In Boeing case they can’t get to the FAA now and the corrupted culture keeps trying to submit incomplete data.

      Hold the course long enough and Boeing will change but it does not happen overnight. That was noted in a letter the FAA sent to Boeing and made public (over the 777X).

      What you can take from this is congress is not taking up the Boeing complaints and putting pressure on the FAA. Without that leverage, Boeing has to comply but its consistently late and not complete data that was called for.

      Its a good thing, the FAA is working the way it should for the first time in my memory (and the FAA behaviour as an mfg cheerleader goes back to at least the 737 rudder issue)

      • Ted:

        There is a recent write up in Flight Global that Gulfstream is commenting on resource constrained FAA holding up its programs.

        It will be interesting to see how that parses out. Is Boeing sucking up the resources or is the FAA overall constrained.

        Boeing has been a lot smarter about not being public about the FAA but that may be policy and if there is a legitimate issue they may be letting others do the commenting.

        • I don’t remember FAA had to send a letter to them reminding them missing key date for submitting key documents for certification? So many scapegoat hunters barking at the wrong tree.

          • “In that regard, the Federal Aviation Administration said it was unable to complete its review of Boeing’s submissions «due to missing and incomplete information regarding human factors assumptions in catastrophic hazard conditions». The human factors analyses relate to response time and how pilots respond to emergencies.”

            Human factors assumptions or ‘unknown unknowns’ as Rumsfeld might have put it
            This was for the few rows shorter max 7 version of the in service max 8

          • Apparently FAA realized, only after dual crashes, how BA’s three second (?IIRC) response time works in real life and its *deadly consequences*.

            Posters here still acted as if there’s nothing wrong. My God!!

          • “I don’t remember FAA had to send a letter to them reminding them missing key date for submitting key documents for certification? So many scapegoat hunters barking at the wrong tree.”

            I meant General Dynamics/Gulfstream


            -> Seven weeks after the second fatal crash of a 737 Max in March, a Boeing engineer submitted a scathing internal ethics complaint alleging that management — determined to keep down costs for airline customers — had blocked significant safety improvements during the jet’s development.

            The ethics charge, filed by 33-year-old engineer Curtis Ewbank, whose job involved studying past crashes and using that information to make new planes safer, describes how around 2014 his group presented to managers and senior executives a proposal to add various safety upgrades to the Renton-built Max. Ewbank now works on airplane systems integration for the Everett-based 777X program.

            -> Managers twice rejected adding the new system on the basis of “cost and potential (pilot) training impact,” the complaint states. It was then raised a third time in a meeting with 737 Max chief project engineer Michael Teal, who cited the same objections as he killed the proposal.

  7. In perfect 20-20 hindsight, the 757 should never have been discontinued. But at the time, (early ’00’s) it stopped selling, so Boeing pulled the plug.

    The 767-300ER passenger airplane was outclassed in nearly all respects by the A330-200. Boeing tried to compete with the 767-400ER, but it flopped – only 37 airplanes to just two customers, Delta and Continental (now United).
    Today the 767 line is all freighters, with over 200 factory-built 767-300F’s delivered plus around fifty more on order.
    Several mod centers offer 767-300ER P to F conversions.

  8. (Transworld, and pnwgeek, I could not find reply buttons for some of your comments)

    Transworld: A300’s and A310s are only partially FBW – unspecified secondary controls only.
    According to the Airbus website
    “One of the A300-600 and A310’s notable innovations had been the introduction of electrical signaling on secondary flight controls, replacing the web of cables and pulleys traditionally used. Béteille wanted to take this evolution further with the next Airbus aircraft – to computer-driven digital “fly-by-wire”, in which the deflections of the flying control surfaces on the wing and tail are no longer driven directly by the pilots’ controls”

    Pnwgeek – the 737NG with conventional spoilers preceeded the 747-8, which used FBW spoilers. The737MAX adapted that new 747-8 technology to have FBW spoilers.

    Note that while FBW Airbuses use a sidestick, FBW Boeings still have a column and control wheel.
    Boeing’s 777 and 787 control wheels and throttles are back-driven to move when commanded by the FBW autoflight computers; Airbus’s sidesticks and throttles do not.
    Another significant difference is the 777 and 787 have soft flight envelope limits that can be exceeded in an emergency. Airbuses have hard limits.

    • But the most significant difference of all:
      The 737 is the only in-production, mainline commercial aircraft IN THE WORLD that’s still using steam age cables and pulleys instead of FBW.
      Even the ARJ-91 has FBW (and EICAS), and it’s only a “primitive” regional aircraft from China.

      Ah yes: the joys of having 2 pilots using all their physical strength to try to turn a manual trim wheel…

      • BA probably won’t and can’t afford to replace it well into mid 2030-ish. Scary thought.

        • Well I am one of those old model steam wire (was that a thing? Ref is steam gauges which is a misnomer when it acualy refers to direct reading gauges not ones that use a transducer)

          Still managed to fix the Passat alternator the other day including sorting through bizzare wrong info on what was supposed to be the right pulley on it and is wrong across the board.

          So something to be said for the old stuff, you don’t get wisdom until you get experience.

          • Yes, and the Amish still drive around in horse-drawn buggies…

          • How many passenger would rather jump on Wright Brothers’ Kitty Hawk than an A321neo/A220?? Shrug.

    • Mitch:

      Thanks for the correction/clarification.

      From all the reports I have read, the MAX/NG are slightly more reliable than the A320 series.

      Trouble shooting a mechanical device is much easier and they are more reliable than electronics. Once you get an electronic intermittent, you often see that followed by a crash.

      The MAX and NG were the best of both worlds as electronic do let you do things that only huge cabinets of relay logic would let you do.

      As much as I loved the Pneumatic controls and the pneumatic actuator were far more reliable than the electronic ones, electronic control of a terminal box (sophisticated room temp maint) was only manageable with a CPU.

      I had a manager (a rare intelligent one) ask me one time if we wold be better off converting central mechanical room control back to Pneumatics (which indeed work well in that application)

      It took a lot more electronic head end management as well as programs and chips failures. The Flip was one person could keep an eye on 20 mechanical rooms vs having to go to each room to see what was going on and you had no fault logging, trends etc to odd ball behavior.

      In fact Airbus has elected to go with Steam (air) Punk in the A350, Bleed Air is nothing more than another name for Pneumatics.

      The 787 is far in advance of the A350 in that regard.

      • The A350 bleed air is to operate A/c packs and drive generators located away from the engine casing. They still have hydraulics too

        the 787 engines still have ‘bleed air’ but they only route it around the nacelle for various engine functions . They dont pipe it to run generators or AC or pressurisation units under the fuselage

  9. Bryce.
    Respectfully, you are overlooking all the 767 based products. They are not FBW. The Lockeed L100 is not FBW. The Antonov 124 is not FBW and it is still in production.

    Also of note, the Airbuss MRTT being FBW is much more sensitive to emp effects and it requires piles of shielding not necessary on the KC46 for primary flight control protection.

    Lastly, there is no data to show that mechanical flight control ststems by design are less safe than FBW systems. There will not be another major aircraft new design made without FBW because the plug and play archetecture is so much simpler and cheaper.

    • The 767, L100 and An124 are currently only in production as freighters — not as mainline (i.e. passenger) aircraft.

      There are plenty of critical electronic systems on tankers besides FBW flight controls: in for a penny, in for a pound.

      Inability to turn the manual trim wheel was a major factor in both MAX crashes: that’s a safety issue. And look at the flight envelope integrity advantages of FBW: no need for MCAS-like amateurism on a true FBW aircraft.

      • Sometimes you just have to call out a falsehood as false.

        The manual trim wheel was NOT a factor in the Indonesian crash. As the airspeed was maintained it would not have been.

        It was a factor in the Ethiopian crash, the pilots lost speed control and it locked up (as its been a known issue since the days of the 707/727/737 original as well as other aircraft)

        My question is why EASA did not stop it? They could have done so at any point in modern aviation and did not do so after the Ethiopian crash.

        I believe it should be corrected but some people are hide bound on alert systems and not the real problems.

      • [comment to tansworld, not to myself]

        Stab trim worked just fine on thousands of 737s of three generations for millions of flights.

        Until the MAX’s MCAS

        Once a stabilizer mistrims nose-down, the pull force and elevator authority needed to keep the airplane in level flight increase. Reports indicated that releasing the column resulted in MCAS pushing the airplane even more nose down. The pull forces got higher and elevator authority decreased as dive speed increased. By then, the stab jackscrew was totally overwhelmed. Pull force to recover would have greatly exceeded the combined strength of both pilots.

        MCAS was a non-redundant system with a lethal failure mode that violated the “Prime Directive” of airliner design:
        a single failure must never ever result in loss of the airplane.
        A single MCAS failure could and did crash the airplane and kill everyone on board.


        – MCAS should never have been installed.
        – MCAS should never have been certified.
        To argue otherwise is trying to justify a catastrophically stupid (although IMO not deliberate) Boeing blunder

        • And the FAA was tricked? Maybe after the first crash.
          Fool me once shame on you, fool me twice shame on me.

    • Pnwgeek:

      I don’t know about simpler, there is a lot of free up in running wires vs cables and pulley systems.

      Rigging is more time consuming but trouble shooting electronics is also time consuming.

      Each time you rig an aircraft there can be (and has been) mistakes where as a program once proven is trouble free.

      Agreed its going in the direction of all electronics except Airbus who insists that Pneumatics are the way to go but what can you say, they just don’t have the design ability to build it, I am sure one day they will.

  10. Bryce, the soon-to-end 747 and still in production 767 have stab trim
    737 stab trim (all models)_ with appropriate backups and redundancies, is electrically driven, operated by dual thumb switches on each control wheel

    Sometimes manual backup is better
    Two examples when total hydraulic failure without manual reversion brought down the airplane.
    Hundreds died
    – JAL 747SR, August 12, 1985. 520 dead; 4 survived
    – United DC-10, July 19, 1989, 112 dead, 184 survived

  11. Sigh!!!

    * On August 12, 1985, the Boeing 747SR operating this flight *suffered a sudden decompression* 12 minutes into the flight, and crashed …

    * On July 19, 1989, the DC-10 (registered as N1819U) serving the flight crash-landed at Sioux City, Iowa, after suffering a catastrophic failure of its tail-mounted engine due to an unnoticed manufacturing defect in the engine’s fan disk, which *led to the loss of many flight controls*.

    • Notably, the JAL decompression was due to improper repair of the aft pressure bulkhead by Boeing engineers…

      • Notably Boeing engineers provided the correct repair, but the repair was not performed correctly by the technicians.

        • …but the repair was not performed correctly by the * Boeing * technicians.

  12. On the subject of the 737’s illustrious manual trim wheel, a little refresher from April 2020:

    “Simulator tests conducted last year provide insight into flight scenarios that can leave Boeing 737 Max pilots struggling or unable to manually trim the aircraft back to level flight.”


    “Requiring both crew members to turn the trim wheel simultaneously in a non-normal scenario is extremely undesirable and goes against all philosophies of having one pilot fly and one run the” quick reference handbook, or QRH, BALPA said. “No flight control system should require both pilots to operate it at any stage, let alone in an emergency.”

    And in the same article:

    “The caution and warning system in the 737 is as archaic as the airframe design. I flew jets made far earlier than the first 737 with a better system,” said Woolman, a former B-52 pilot and Rockwell B-1 bomber flight instructor. “Properly analyzing aircraft failures can be like hunting for Easter eggs, especially if struggling with basic aircraft control.”

  13. Bryce
    October 28, 2022

    BA off to a sluggish start to Q4, with only 23 MAX deliveries so far.
    Some interesting whitetails / ex-China in the mix, e.g.
    – LN 7692: ex-Hainan, now United.
    – LN 7797 and LN7765: ex-Norwegian, now Swoop (Canada).
    – LN 6448: ex-Lion, now Batik (5.2 years old!).
    – LN 7596: ex-Eastar, now Akasa.
    – LN 7672, 7762, 8112, 8115, 8138 and 8355: ex-Blue, now LOT (via ALC).

    (at least) 11 whitetails out of 23 deliveries implies only 12 new ones off the line.

    • In contrast, for Airbus (so far in Q4):
      A321: 28
      A320: 17
      Total: 45 (all new off the line).

    • Those reallocations of pre-built MAX are not going to help the bottom line much by the time you factor in the costs of reactivation of stored frames then reconfiguration and repainting for the new customer.

      • Absolutely!
        Also: they were probably re-sold at a very heavy discount.
        At this rate, BCA is heading for another loss in Q4.

    • It’s coming on two years since re-certification and they still have 270 Max’s in inventory, according to the last filing.

      Do you know how depressing that must be, for everyone to come in and see those aircraft sitting there, not moving?

      I think it’s safe to conclude now that the inventory buildup was a failure.

      1) Aircraft are taking longer than expected to get upgraded
      2) Changeovers are costing BA a small fortune
      3) This will drag on for at least another year

      Looks like Muilenberg was the lucky one, to get out when he did (yah, he was pushed out, but still…).

  14. I will never fly on a 737MAX ever – I don’t believe anything that Boeing say any more and probably never will

  15. About the Inventory:

    This is straight off the financials:


    “Commercial aircraft programs inventory includes approximately 290 737 MAX aircraft and 120 787 aircraft at June 30, 2022 as compared with 335 737 MAX aircraft and 110 787 aircraft at December 31, 2021.”


    “Commercial aircraft programs inventory includes approximately 270 737 MAX aircraft and 115 787 aircraft at September 30, 2022 as compared with 335 737 MAX aircraft and 110 787 aircraft at December 31, 2021.”

    So over the past 3 months BA has been able to reduce Inventory by 20 Max’s and 5 Dreamliners.

    This is killing BCA. Bryce has pointed out that they’ve made an effort to move about a dozen Max’s in Oct so far, but at that rate, it’ll take them 2 more years to clear them out.

    This is from the Q1/2021 financials:

    “Commercial aircraft programs inventory includes approximately 400 737 MAX aircraft and 100 787 aircraft at March 31, 2021 as compared with 425 737 MAX aircraft and 80 787 aircraft at December 31, 2020.”

    So just after the Max returned to service in Q4/2020, they had 425 Max’s in inventory. Fast forward and they have reduced it by 155 units to 270, over 7 quarters. 21 months. About 7 a month.

    I understand the China situation impact, but this doesn’t account for all of the Inventory.

    • @ Frank
      Thanks for the numbers.
      In past discussions of whitetails, one of the commenters here pointed out that many/most of the whitetails were stored in Washingtin state — which is one of the wettest states in the US. He said that moss, mold, algae and rodents were a problem. Alan Joyce recently revealed the enormous effort involved in de-mothballing an airframe in the desert — it must be a much heavier task in a wet climate. And remember: many of these frames are 3-4 years old!
      Who’d want such an airframe? There must be stunning discounts involved to get rid of them — particularly the older ones.

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