Friday, May 17, 2013

The 787 Flies, I know, I can hear its Squawks Overhead

Squawk #1:
Air India is Goring its Ox! A bad choice of words for AI.  Airlines (ANA) are receiving up to 21% increased fuel economy over prior models.  Air India says only 17% and they want money for it. Next they will ask for a rebate because it can't fit household goods in the overhead luggage bins. Boeing prides itself in fuel economy and rightly so! Not every airline carrier operates its aircraft the same, or flies the same routes. Not only that, airlines may not maximize the aircraft. Air India is asking the "Boeing Sugar Daddy" for a refund, on lateness, "Done", on Battery Issue, "Done", and now fuel economy, well sounds like a personal problem, "not done".  What cooked numbers are they using. Are they comparing performance numbers with the 777-200, or the 767.  A good question. Are they comparing numbers with long legged  timely routes, or the airport circling type of routes, another good question? Frankfurt to India is a good test.  Puddle Jumping India during monsoons not a good measuring stick. The question remains, what are they doing to get a 17% number which is pretty incredible to begin with in the first place?

Boeing will ask that question to see what's cooking on the stove from accounting.  They will also note that ANA doesn't cook, but serves Sushi on flights. Air India should do what I do. I check the inflation pressure on my own car. I run long distance and avoid intown traffic, and I don't throttle the car in heavy traffic. On my last road trip I got 21 MPG, in town I get 14 mpg. I want my money back from Nissan when I drive in town with my XTerra.

If this is AI opening salvo  for more money, then raise the price of your tickets, and stop buying the 787. Go back to airplanes that receive 17% less fuel economy for the same ticket price. AI should look in the mirror first before commenting on Boeing's looks.

Squawk  #2:
A loose nut is a loose nut. It smoked an ANA electrical panel. Not battery problem, but a over publicized problem once again. Commonly called a squawk in the airline industry. Even though important it is not tied to an engineering fault, poor design or a part failure.  A loose nut on electrical wiring is a problem in my own house when I change a light switch out. Shame on the Boeing worker who didn't check his workmanship, before getting his four hours of sleep. Bad excuse, but something Boeing needs to do in the field, during this critical time. Have an extensive review of everything touched by Boeing, before signing off in the field, maybe missing. A field review should have caught an under torque nut in the panel, just like does in the factory. Now Boeing has cross threaded it PR team with another loose nut connecting to its robust fix.