National Aviation Press were invited to see what only Spirit and Boeing employees have seen to this point.
Spirit Aerosystem employees in Wichita are looking forward to the increased production of the 787 Dreamliner.
"Kind of like writing history. No one's ever done this before," said Nick Aldridge, Spirit employee.
Spirit employees recognize they are part of something that's never been done before. They are building the largest, most complex composite structure for the commercial market.
"It's not like any plane I've ever worked on. I've worked on small jets.
This thing's big and it's something new every day," said Derek Hughes, Spirit employee.
'We've never finished an airplane to this point. We've always done
structure. But as you can look around we've never installed ECS ducts, never
installed wiring. We've never even installed blankets. So this is a new
adventure for us," said Harold Leslie, Senior Manager, 787 Systems Installation.
When the section of the plane is flown to Everett, Washington next Thursday, it'll be ready to plug into the rest of the plane.
Spirit looks forward to increasing 787 production.
"And we won't really start ramping it up again until around third quarter of
this year the October time frame. And then in '09 it really starts ramping
up again to the old rates," said Forrest Urban, Senior Director of Operations.
Spirit and Boeing don't think they'll run into the same scheduling problems
that plagued the 787 Dreamliner before.