Monday, March 16, 2015

Airplane Wars Reflect The Production of Liberty Ships From WWII

Finding a way for the introduction of ships in an airplane blog is enjoyable. Ships are my second major love when considering the human race of achievement. Liberty Ships from World War II are a marvel almost forgotten. I boarded one in the summer of 1994 while in San Diego Harbour, before it was to travel to San Francisco Bay as a permanent display. The more I scrambled about the ship the more I was amazed at its capacity for a smallish ship compared with today's modern cargo ship that takes months to build.

The American industrial muscle built 2,710 ships during the four years from 1941 to 1945. The ship I went on was built in 1945, the last generation Liberty. There were flaws in any Liberty ship when plates buckled or cracked. Wartime causes precision to flee, requiring a more generous tolerance for its engines from direct steam power to a steam turbine configuration. The whole point was to build so many of these expendable ships as possible, before the Germans could sink them. What emerged was the Swiss Army Knife of Cargo carrying ships and a victory during WWII.

Only One of Two remaining Liberty Ship at Age 70
SS John W. Brown is one of only two surviving operational Liberty ships.

My San Diego Liberty Ship Tour Example: SS John W Brown

WWII Float Line of Liberty Ships

Boeing has begun its own Wartime Effort with its production map, supply chain, and workforce. They plan to increase the 737 line to 52 a month while introducing the MAX simultaneously. The plan is to ramp up 777X production during testing phase while building the 777 300 ER production at full speed. Boeing plans for the 787 coming out its ears in Everett, and Charleston. I am guessing without knowledge on hand, but just guessing that Boeing will Build the 787-8 in Everett with the 787-9. I am also thinking Charleston will have both the 787-9 and -10 on its hands until further orders are obtained. Boeing is in a production fight with its strategic production numbers continuing during model transition from old to new.   

The Boeing Liberty Ship equivalent is in the 737 Max with some incredible differences. Boeing has time for 737 precision and state of the art accessories, where the Liberty goal was make it float and sail it. The 737 has the advantage of innovation over its competitor. However, time is the combatant in this case. It needs a wartime effort to do all things to all airplanes, and do it well beyond the call of duty. 

Here are the time fronts of this war:
  • 737NG - MAX Transition
  • 777 300ER- 777X Transition
  • 787-8 through 787-10 production integration
  • Every Ship Counts/ no losses... 
  • Continuous production without pause/no stops
  • Congruent delivery pace
  • Stable Supply Chain
  • No Testing Show Stoppers
  • Always Exceeding Customer Expectations
So the Liberty Ship example was not lost in history's back pages. Boeing is using the production mentality as if it were a wartime paradigm in today's marketplace.

The 737NG "Liberty" Production Line Renton, Wa
Image result for Renton production floor 737 MAX 

The Everett 777 Production Line

The Everett 787 Production Line
Image result for everett 787 production Line

Last But Not Surely Not The Least: The Charleston 787 Production Pace