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737 Max on its way back in sky?

It seems like Boeing believe they have fixed all the problems with the 737 Max, and last week the test flights took place. Now it is up to the regulators, FAA, EASA, Transport Canada and ANAC (Brazil), to look at the data from the test flights and decide if the plane will be recertified and what kind of pilot training will be required to fly it. So if everything goes as planned for Boeing the 737 Max might be back in the sky in September.

Posted by
17791 posts

With all of the airplanes that are now idle because of coronavirus, does anybody really need it back.

Posted by
1450 posts

September might be a bit optimistic, and I wouldn't bet on it happening. An honestly I think many airlines hope it doesn't happen. They are probably not too keen on getting more planes that they currently have no use for.

Posted by
811 posts

I agree that airlines are probably happy to see a delay in new MAX deliveries...the cancellations that have either started (Norwegian) or been threatened (American) would support this. I do think that some airlines might like to have frames they've already taken delivery of cleared to fly, if for no other reason than the cost-savings versus older models.

Posted by
570 posts

And after a 3 year proven track record I’ll consider flying in one; but not before.

Posted by
811 posts

And after a 3 year proven track record I’ll consider flying in one; but not before.

I don't know about 3-year track record, but this plane is a no-fly for me until the airlines redo the lavs they've put in these things. If you've had the "pleasure" of squeezing into one, you'll understand ;-)

Posted by
616 posts

One of the most uncomfortable planes I've flown on. Designed to squeeze every inch of room from passengers in order to cram in more seats. Tiny, tiny bathrooms. Keep the damn thing grounded.

Posted by
6790 posts

One of the most uncomfortable planes I've flown on. Designed to squeeze every inch of room from passengers in order to cram in more seats. Tiny, tiny bathrooms. Keep the damn thing grounded.

Boeing builds the hull---- the airlines decide what goes inside

Posted by
6549 posts

I rode on one from Dublin to Boston. For a one aisle airplane, it was very nice.

There are different versions. Some are for medium length flights--like the past 737's. And they have versions that have extended range tanks designed to fly from Western Europe to the NE U.S. Corridor.

After $ billions have gone into this airplane, there's no way the Max family is not going to be put in the air. I feel comfortable that the needed software and hardware changes will make it a very safe airplane. Heaven knows the Boeing engineering and changes are being close enough monitored by world govenmental agencies..

Posted by
6790 posts

My only comment had to do with the Eric's complaint about the tiny bathrooms and uncomfortable seating. I only pointed out the airline decides on how the interiors, seating, etc is configured.

Posted by
811 posts

Joe, please reread my post. I clearly state that it's the airlines who need to change the lavs. And, agree with you, not sure why Ufkak pulled your name in with Tom's.

Edit: Oops, looks like Joe was referring to another Eric's post, not mine. Sorry 'bout that.

Posted by
1450 posts

So I guess if this was the first post of yours like this I had seen,
then maybe I would give you the benefit of the doubt you were just
trying to "state facts" and really don't find anything odd about
adding on to what a racist poster said, by just "innocently" (and
falsely) claiming that plane crashes that killed hundreds were simply
a totally anodyne and neutral function of "Boeing build[ing] the
hull---- the airlines decide what goes inside" ... so, first that's
not the way it works that is false, second give me a break.

As far as I can tell, joe's comment was about the bathrooms being tiny. That is certainly not Boeing's fault, it is the airlines that decide what the interior will look like.

Posted by
811 posts

BTW, anyone interested in this most important topic--tiny lavs--have a look-see at the link below, which shows the bathrooms in question. These are what many airlines have installed in the MAX series. And, in what should have come with a winky emoji, Collins Aerospace states one of the advantages of their space-saving lavs is that the airlines can use that space to increase legroom. Hah!

https://www.collinsaerospace.com/en/what-we-do/Commercial-Aviation/Cabin/Structures/Commercial-Lavatory-Solutions/Advanced-Lavatory

Posted by
1450 posts

It seems like the test flights were only for FAA and EASA and TC will do their own test flight(s).

And in one of the older Max threads, someone wrote in March last year:

Once probable cause is established, both software and training updates
can be rolled out fairly quickly (I'd define "fairly quickly" as some
number of months...more than a couple, but less than six). My guess is
that most 737Max aircraft will probably be flying again sometime this
summer.

I don't want to blame or ridicule the poster, but it is important to remind ourselves that speculation is speculation and nothing else. And time will tell when it will fly again, although the airlines are probably not in a hurry to have it back…

Posted by
31137 posts

After flight testing is completed and the demand for air travel increases, I suspect it will take awhile for passenger confidence in the 737 Max to improve. The cramped seating in Economy may change because of the need to "distance" during flights.

Posted by
1450 posts

It will be very interesting to see both how the airlines and the general public react to it when it is back.

Posted by
4514 posts

Airlines will want to swap out their older 737 models for the new MAX because it is much more fuel efficient. That is a VERY big deal in aviation. Cash flow to pay for delivery will certainly be an issue for airlines, but short of that, they want the plane. And so many pilots have the time now to take the extra training, which is usually a scheduling problem for busy airlines.

What we will not likely see much of are new orders for the MAX or any commercial jet.

I doubt many people will have an issue with flying in it. People will say "Never!" or "No way!" but people have no control over the plane they fly in. Even a plane listed in your ticket can easily be swapped out for another, or a delay puts you on a different flight. And I doubt many people will cancel their flight over it - they need to get where they are going.

Posted by
1450 posts

Some will have issues flying it, some will probably not care. Personally I will avoid it when it returns to service, easiest done by avoiding airlines with the Max in their fleet (pretty easy so far in Europe). When it has flown for a year or two without major incidents I might consider it.

And replacing older planes is something few airlines are thinking about at the moment, Boeing has so far seen hundreds of Max ordered cancelled.

Posted by
2165 posts

I'm happy my usual airline (Delta) is the only US airline that does not fly the MAX. There are reports in the media that Boeing has offered Delta a sweetheart deal to buy some, but I'm hoping the airline stays MAX-free.

Posted by
1450 posts

I'm happy my usual airline (Delta) is the only US airline that does
not fly the MAX.

As well as JetBlue and a couple of other low cost airlines.

There have been rumours about a Max order from Delta, but few airlines have the money for a big order at the moment. On the other hand Boeing are desperate for a MAX order from a well known airline, so they are probably willing to sell them at bargain prices.

Posted by
595 posts

Some will have issues flying it, some will probably not care. Personally I will avoid it when it returns to service, easiest done by avoiding airlines with the Max in their fleet (pretty easy so far in Europe). When it has flown for a year or two without major incidents I might consider it.

I'll wait 5+ years, and then if I have no other choice. Most flaws that lead to crashes take a few years to make themselves sadly manifest. Think the DC10 cargo door latch causing crashes, or its closely spaced hydraulic lines that led to the Sioux City crash. The engineering that went into the MAX led to two planes crashing in a few months. What else is buried in the plane? I'm not willing to bet my life Boeing has found (or is capable of finding) the remaining flaws in the MAX.

Boeing 737 engineering has a troubling record. As the NY Times reports, a 2009 landing crash in Amsterdam killing all aboard bears an eerie similarity to the one bad sensor out of two in the MAX crashes; in Amsterdam dual altitude sensors were available but one malfunctioned and caused the plane to think it was already on the ground so it shut off thrust (see https://www.nytimes.com/2020/01/20/business/boeing-737-accidents.html) In engineering this is called a single point of failure. Boeing once used to build great airplanes but it has lost its safety culture.

Posted by
2114 posts

I flew on them for a couple of very short flights, and I have to say I was underwhelmed. Even though I think the AA and SW pilots get sufficient training to fly them safely, I will do my best to avoid them.