American airframer Boeing has started final assembly of the first 737 MAX 8, in Renton, Washington.
Keith Leverkuhn, vice president and general manager, 737 MAX program, Boeing Commercial Airplanes
After the first fuselage arrived on 21st August from Spirit Aerosystems in Wichita, Kansas, mechanics began installing flight systems and insulation blankets.
“We continue to meet our plan on the 737 MAX program thanks to the dedication of our employee team and our suppliers, We have a lot more work still ahead of us but we’re very pleased with our progress to date.”
Sean Christian, 737 MAX Electrical team lead
Crews next moved the fuselage to the wing-to-body join position on the new production line where the first MAXs will be built. Mechanics then attached the wings to the body of the airplane.
“It’s an honor. There is only one crew that gets to be that first crew that builds that airplane. I’m really excited,”
Boeing will build the first 737 MAXs exclusively on the new production line in the Renton factory. Once mechanics prove out the production process, the team will extend MAX production to the other two final assembly lines in Renton.
Scott Campbell, vice president and general manager, 737 program and Renton site leader, Boeing Commercial Airplanes
The 737 MAX is on track to roll out by the end of the year and fly in early 2016. Launch customer Southwest Airlines is scheduled to take delivery of the first 737 MAX in the third quarter of 2017. In total, the 737 MAX family has 2,869 orders from 58 customers worldwide.
“The opening of a brand new production line in Renton increases our flexibility and capacity, allowing this incredible team to continue to meet our customers’ need for the world’s most reliable single-aisle airplanes, well into the future,”