The first flight of the Boeing 787 will hopefully take place next quarter, but when it happens it will be without all of the proper fasteners in place.
Boeing acknowledged Monday that it will not take the extra time that would be needed to hunt down and replace all the nonconforming fasteners in the six flight test planes. Fastener issues have been among many that have already delayed the program by about two years, and Boeing can’t afford to further push back the flight test program.
Boeing says the problem fasteners don’t present a safety problem. Of course.
The status of the program is to be updated today at some point. 15 orders were canceled in December, but 93 new orders were placed. There is currently a backlog of about 900 planes.