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Boeing Factory Tour Renton

BOEING Factory Tour

I was lucky enough to get a behind the scenes tour of the Boeing 737 Factory in Renton / Seattle Washington a few years back now. Now you just don’t get these opportunities to do something like this, so when it occurs you jump at the chance. Boeing does run some tours but mainly at Everett. So I’d thought I’d upload a couple of pictures from the day. This was an amazing experience. If you’ve had the chance to fly anywhere, it’s more than likely that you’ve flown on a Boeing aircraft and also the chances are that it was a 737 type aircraft. These style of aircraft have been around since 1966 and cost from around $30 million to over $100 million depending on configurations. So save your pennies if you are looking to purchase one.

The process of building an aircraft has been so streamlined now that the aircraft are being built in about 2 weeks from when the fuselage enters the hanger. Below are a couple of photos of the factory before the streamlining process and after.  You will  see the clogged hanger in the before photo and the clean flowing photo afterwards. This increase productivity by allowing the aircraft to be in constant motion in the hanger and at the end of the day that produces more planes for Boeing’s customers.

There is kilometers/miles of cabling that goes into these birds and how the build crew put these together is just an amazing feat. There are very tight working conditions and a lot of pressure to ensure that everything is done correctly as every aircraft has a set number of components allocated IE. nuts and bolts allocated to them, so they can’t have any left over or be short either. To add to that, each plane has it’s on configuration for each customer. One thing that is amazing is how small an empty plane looks with no seats in it.

If you ever get a chance to get to Seattle, make sure you head out to the Museum of Flight if you can’t get access to the Boeing factory.

 

B737 For Virgin Blue

In the cockpit of a 737 being built for Virgin

B737 on the production line

B737 on the production line

The factory before the process was streamlined

The factory before the process of building an aircraft was streamlined

The factory after the process was streamlined

The B737 factory after the process was streamlined

 

The APU being worked on

The Auxiliary Power Unit (APU) being worked on

The tail being fitted and tested

The tail being fitted and tested

The radome being fitted and tested

The radome being fitted and tested

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