Boeing has about $24bn in 787 inventory sitting around Paine Field in Everett waiting to be delivered. They have 9 planes in preflight 5 for ANA , 3 for AIr India and 1 for Qatar Airways. After that they have 39 more that have to go through change incorporation. Looking at what has been delivered, what is going to be delivered and the air frames that are undergoing change incorporation, one thing stands out clearly: Boeing will prepare and deliver the later built air frames (airplanes 31 to 65) as they require significantly less rework compared to airplanes 4 to 30. Boeing will continue to focus on getting airplanes 31 to 65 out the door with change incorporation along side the airplanes that don't need to go through the costly change incorporation. Many of these late planes don't need much re-work at all thus allowing Boeing to get them to customers faster and book the revenues sooner.
The numbers tell the story.
Of the 11 airplanes that have been delivered 4 are LN 30 and below (36% of the deliveries so far).
Of the airplanes that are currently ready to be delivered (the 9 in preflight) there is one that is coming from the batch of LN 30 and below (11% of the 9 airplanes that I categorize as preflight).
Of the airplanes that are currently in the change incorporation process (in building 40-24, EMC or other buildings for re-work purposes) there are 5 out of 11 airplanes which I categorized as actively going through change incorporation (as opposed to storage/change incorporation Dreamliners which are mainly being stored). That is about 45% of the 11 airplanes being worked on.
Of the 28 airplanes that I count as being stored (not actively being worked on), 16 are from LN 4 to LN 30 or about 57%. I expect that by the end of this year most of the airplanes from LN 31 to LN 65 will be in customer hands.
As Boeing works through the late builds they'll start to switch to re-working the early build 787s and prepare them for delivery but in doing so, these airplanes will spend more time in the EMC thus slowing down deliveries from the change incorporation batch of 787 in 2013-2014. I think it is reasonable to assume that Boeing cost for these airplanes are going to shoot through the roof owing to the amount of work that has to be done on these airplanes.
In other news, Boeing is finally getting some of the preflight 787s back into the air. ZA507 (LN 48, JA810A) should be flying today as will ZA509 (LN 56, JA812A) which will be making its first flight. It does seem that deliveries are getting close but I have yet to get any information about this.
Boeing is now trying to finalize an order for 5 787s with Batik Air (owned by Lion Air). No word on when this will be finalized or which version of the 787 they're buying.