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Tail issues force rework on 787s

written by australianaviation.com.au | June 25, 2010
Boeing says the 787 remains on track despite identifying a production issue with the tail. (Gerard Frawley)

Boeing has announced that it has identified a workmanship issue on the tails of its flight test 787s, requiring it to inspect and make some changes to the aircraft’s horizontal stabilisers, but has denied earlier media reports that the five flying aircraft have been grounded.

Boeing noted that the issue related to improperly installed shims and the torque of associated fasteners in the horizontal stabilisers, which are manufactured by Alenia Aeronautica in Italy. It has since started an inspection and rework program on all 787s flying and in production. Each inspection will take one to two days, with the resulting rework taking eight days.

The issue was raised by various Seattle based media outlets on June 24, which reported that the 787s had been grounded. Boeing later issued a statement denying that the aircraft have been grounded, noting instead that it was conducting the inspections on each aircraft before their next flights.

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Despite the issue, Boeing says that it still expects to deliver the first 787 to All Nippon Airlines during the final quarter of this year.

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