Friday, April 23, 2021

Major Correction - Boeing Delivered 1000th 787 and it was to Air Lease Corporation with China Southern Airlines as operator.

UPDATE: Ok so I got wrong again!  Dominic Gates of the Seattle Times informed me that the 1000th 787 indeed went to Air Lease Corporation who leased the aircraft to China Southern Airlines.  This means that all three airplanes were delivered roughly at the same time but the 1000th delivery went to ALC.  Sorry for the confusion!

So a couple days ago I was thrown off by an error in my spreadsheets which was caught by an eagle eyed reader of this blog. Turns out I mistakenly credited Turkish Airlines for a delivery last October when they did not take any 787 that month.  Consequently my spreadsheets were off by one and after researching the error today I made a correction to my spreadsheets.

It turns out number 1000 was delivered yesterday to Japan Airlines.  The aircraft is ZE456 (LN1059, JA882J) and has departed Everett today for Tokyo.  It fitting that the 1000th 787 delivered went to a Japanese airline as it was ANA and Japan Airlines that kicked off the 787 program with orders in 2004 (really ANA). It was also fitting that the 1000th 787 was delivered from Everett. It was Everett where the program was born, went through enormous growing pains as has been documented in this blog and finally the place where the 787 hit its stride when most of the issues that stalled the airplane development was put behind it.

Of course Boeing is still facing significant headwinds given the fuselage join issues and the inspections that they have to conduct not just on the airplanes at Everett and Charleston but also many of those that have been delivered.  But the delivery of the 1000th 787 is a noteworthy milestone for this program.

Lastly, I want to renew my appeal for insiders who can help with information on the 787 program as well as help with keeping my spreadsheets up to date.  If you can contribute, I and many who read this blog would be very appreciative.

787 Spreadsheets

Thursday, April 22, 2021

Boeing Delivers 1000th 787

 Boeing delivered the 1000th 787 since program deliveries started in September 2011...almost 10 years ago. The aircraft is either ZE455 (LN 1057, JA 881J) for Japan Airlines or ZB971 (LN980, B-20EH) for Air Lease Corp leasing to China Southern Airlines as operator.  I am trying to find out which one has the 1000th Dreamliner to be delivered.  Both these airplanes had their delivery flight on 4/21 and 4/22 respectively and are both 787-9.  While this is an important milestone for the company and the 787 program itself, it is a bittersweet one given the trials and tribulations that the 787 has gone through since its inception.  During the boom years when the program was delivering up to 14 Dreamliners per month it had seemed the the worst days were behind it until the manufacturing issues and COVID-19 literally bought deliveries to a screeching halt.

Boeing has restarted 787 deliveries though it's a very tepid number (2 in March and 5 so far this month) and the issues that have grounded the airplanes are still not completely resolved nor are the market forces which have forced Boeing to consolidate the two production lines and dramatically reduce the 787 production rate.

The important question at this point is where does this program go from here.  It is my total expectation that Boeing will probably have a 787NG similar to the revamp of the classic 777 to the 777NG (777-200LR/7777-300ER) where there would aerodynamic improvements along with newer technology engines to further improve fuel burn. I also wouldn't be surprised to see a 787F amongst the offerings sometime this decade to supplant the 767-300ERF.  I don't anticipate that Boeing will launch this 787NG program for another 4 to 5 years though...not until there is a meaningful recovery in the widebody passenger aircraft market as well as more comfort amongst the flying public that the COVID-19 pandemic has subsided substantially enough that regular long range passenger travel recovers to pre-pandemic levels.

Meanwhile with the slowdown in 787 production along with the resumption of deliveries (albeit at a trickle), the 787 storage situation should be stabilized at the current levels of 90-96 airplanes just as long as there are no new issues that are revealed as the current inspections and re-work moves forward.

As always if there are any insiders with knowledge of the current status of the 787 program, please drop me an email at  I will try to update the blog and dmy spreadsheets as often as possible.

787 Spreadsheets