You know what it’s like. You get to the critical point in that weekend project only to find you’ve run out of something essential. A quick dash to the local hardware store sorts it out, even if they don’t have quite the right part…
“Boeing has previously acknowledged that temporary fasteners would be required on early 787 airframes while a shortage of flightworthy fasteners was being remedied. Flightblogger has learned that many of the temporary fasteners, which were painted red and installed in place of flightworthy parts, were purchased from run-of-the-mill chain hardware stores, including Home Depot and Ace Hardware.”
With “keeping it digital” being emphasised by many (digital info management) vendors this comment caught my attention:
“Because all work has to be documented and accounted for electronically, Boeing has employed the VELOCITY system to track the assembly process. Engineers and mechanics who are working directly with Dreamliner One have found the paperless work environment an impediment to progress.
One veteran engineer put it this way, “Boeing has missed a fundamental element in Lean Manufacturing. When building and assembling the aircraft in VELOCITY, the paperless assembly environment system shouldn’t be something that creates more work for us."
While this sounds similar to the A380 story…
“Boeing hired the best minds to design the new 787 and they hired the best minds to put in place a world class lean manufacturing team. The issue has been one of execution.”
Building aircraft is tough but the A380 and 787 will be great to fly, eventually. It’s just a matter of time and money!
UPDATE 07–09–2007: 787 Dreamliner Fastener Shortage Traced to 9/11 - www.designnews.com