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Doorless Plane Did Not Have Bolts Installed On Door
Posted by: chopper
Date: January 29, 2024 06:28PM
Very scary stuff. I'm glad all passengers had their belts on and the stewardesses were not near when the door left.

WSJ today

The increasingly likely scenario, according to some of these people, is based partly on an apparent absence of markings on the Alaska door plug itself that would suggest bolts were in place when it blew off the jet around 16,000 feet over Oregon on Jan. 5.

They also pointed to paperwork and process lapses at Boeing’s Renton, Wash., factory related to the company’s work on the plug door.

...

U.S. Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D., Ill.), chair of a key Senate panel on aviation safety, said she met with Boeing Chief Executive David Calhoun last week and discussed the probe into what went wrong.

“It is going to show that there has been lack of documentation when it comes with how and when those pins were installed or removed and whether or not they were reinstalled or not,” said Duckworth. “He assured me that they were going through that entire process to make sure that they are able to track on their aircraft when these things are happening.”

....

Boeing opened or removed the door plug after the 737 MAX 9 jet’s fuselage arrived at the plane maker’s Renton, Wash., factory for final assembly, The Wall Street Journal and other news outlets have reported.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/29/2024 08:06PM by chopper.
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Re: Doorless Plane Did Have Bolts Installed On Door
Posted by: Carnos Jax
Date: January 29, 2024 06:51PM
Is your thread title wrong? Are you missing the word "Not", as in "...Did Not Have..."?
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Re: Doorless Plane Did Have Bolts Installed On Door
Posted by: Carnos Jax
Date: January 29, 2024 06:53PM
The absence of markings would suggest the bolts were NOT in place, correct?



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/29/2024 07:06PM by Carnos Jax.
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Re: Doorless Plane Did Have Bolts Installed On Door
Posted by: GGD
Date: January 29, 2024 06:58PM
Quote
Carnos Jax
The absence of markings would suggest the door was NOT in place, correct?

I agree, this doesn't make sense as written.

Here's what I'm finding from WSJ.

Quote

WSJ News Exclusive | Alaska Airlines Plane Appears to Have Left Boeing Factory Without Critical Bolts
Andrew Tangel

Updated Jan. 29, 2024 12:03 pm ET
Here’s a time line of what occurred after the aircraft’s midair incident. Photo: National Transportation/Planet Pix/Zuma Press

Bolts needed to secure part of an Alaska Airlines jet that blew off in midair appear to have been missing when the plane left Boeing’s factory.

Boeing and other industry officials increasingly believe the plane maker’s employees failed to put back the bolts when they reinstalled a 737 MAX 9 plug door after opening or removing it during production, according to people familiar with the matter.

[www.wsj.com]
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Re: Doorless Plane Did Have Bolts Installed On Door
Posted by: sekker
Date: January 29, 2024 07:19PM
So the bolts, bolted?
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Re: Doorless Plane Did Not Have Bolts Installed On Door
Posted by: chopper
Date: January 29, 2024 08:07PM
I screwed up the title. No bolts at all. Incredible.
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Re: Doorless Plane Did Not Have Bolts Installed On Door
Posted by: Black
Date: January 29, 2024 08:14PM
Not much new here but not sure the writer had a great grasp. The bolts were probably in place when the fuselage left Spirit. After delivery to Boeing, some "non-conforming" rivets were discovered and the bolts were most likely removed and not replaced in the process of addressing that problem.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/29/2024 08:15PM by Black.
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Re: Doorless Plane Did Not Have Bolts Installed On Door
Posted by: davester
Date: January 29, 2024 10:31PM
Here's a doorless plane for ya. I actually flew this one a couple of years ago in Maui.





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Re: Doorless Plane Did Not Have Bolts Installed On Door
Posted by: Thrift Store Scott
Date: January 30, 2024 02:20AM
Quote
chopper
Boeing opened or removed the door plug after the 737 MAX 9 jet’s fuselage arrived at the plane maker’s Renton, Wash., factory for final assembly, The Wall Street Journal and other news outlets have reported.
As I understand it, the 737-9 bodies arrive at Renton with a full emergency exit door assembly in place at that location. For low-density configurations, that exit door assembly is removed and a non-opening plug is installed in its place. This is done to save the cost of regular maintenance and inspections on an exit door that isn't needed for the number of passengers aboard, plus the plug weighs much less than an exit door assembly.

The general thinking on Airliners.net was that the plug was bolted in because missing bolts would have been obvious during outfitting, but that said bolts must not have been torqued down properly and also not double-checked afterwards.



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Re: Doorless Plane Did Not Have Bolts Installed On Door
Posted by: GGD
Date: January 30, 2024 03:14AM
Quote
Thrift Store Scott
The general thinking on Airliners.net was that the plug was bolted in because missing bolts would have been obvious during outfitting, but that said bolts must not have been torqued down properly and also not double-checked afterwards.

Everything that I've seen says that torque has nothing to do with it, those bolts have a cotter pin through them holding the nut securely in place. They can't loosen and fall off, especially not two of them at the same time. Everything is pointing to them having been removed for maintenance and forgetting to reinstall them.

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Re: Doorless Plane Did Not Have Bolts Installed On Door
Posted by: Lux Interior
Date: January 30, 2024 07:09AM
Oh come on!

Who here hasn't reassembled something and had a few parts left over?

No biggie!
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Re: Doorless Plane Did Not Have Bolts Installed On Door
Posted by: mrbigstuff
Date: January 30, 2024 07:21AM
This is what I love about flying in airplanes - it's only a small part that is missing that would've prevented the crash! Easy to miss! I've done it dozens of times myself in the driveway.



Hurts like a bastid...
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Re: Doorless Plane Did Not Have Bolts Installed On Door
Posted by: macphanatic
Date: January 30, 2024 07:40AM
People who don't wear their seatbelt while on a plane, except to get up, are idiots. If they think it's uncomfortable, they can loosen it just a bit. The discomfort they will feel due unexpected bit of severe turbulence, etc if they're not wearing the belt will be significantly greater.
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Re: Doorless Plane Did Not Have Bolts Installed On Door
Posted by: Carnos Jax
Date: January 30, 2024 08:00AM
agree smiley

As a retired engineer, one of the primary loading cases I would analyze for, were gust loads. I knew the airplane and seats can take a lot more than a human body could. I always keep my seatbelt fastened when I fly.
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Re: Doorless Plane Did Not Have Bolts Installed On Door
Posted by: Ombligo
Date: January 30, 2024 09:00AM
Boeing needs to put its workers through a competency test - have them assemble an Ikea bookcase.



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Re: Doorless Plane Did Not Have Bolts Installed On Door
Posted by: Lemon Drop
Date: January 30, 2024 09:20AM
It should also be against the law the fly with a baby or toddler on your lap. Had a baby been in the lap of the middle seat passenger on that flight, or God forbid the window, they'd be dead.

Normal turbulence injures little ones all the time.

It's not worth the money saved. Put them in their own secure buckled carrier.
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Re: Doorless Plane Did Not Have Bolts Installed On Door
Posted by: macphanatic
Date: January 30, 2024 09:47AM
Quote
Lemon Drop
It should also be against the law the fly with a baby or toddler on your lap. Had a baby been in the lap of the middle seat passenger on that flight, or God forbid the window, they'd be dead.

Normal turbulence injures little ones all the time.

It's not worth the money saved. Put them in their own secure buckled carrier.

I agree.
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Re: Doorless Plane Did Not Have Bolts Installed On Door
Posted by: Carnos Jax
Date: January 30, 2024 10:37AM
Yup
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Re: Doorless Plane Did Not Have Bolts Installed On Door
Posted by: Black
Date: January 30, 2024 10:38AM
This is a really detailed account -- you have to scroll about halfway down to get to the meat. All unverified/off the record but has the ring of truth IMO.
[www.seattletimes.com]
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Re: Doorless Plane Did Not Have Bolts Installed On Door
Posted by: Black
Date: January 30, 2024 10:42AM
Quote
Thrift Store Scott
Quote
chopper
Boeing opened or removed the door plug after the 737 MAX 9 jet’s fuselage arrived at the plane maker’s Renton, Wash., factory for final assembly, The Wall Street Journal and other news outlets have reported.
As I understand it, the 737-9 bodies arrive at Renton with a full emergency exit door assembly in place at that location. For low-density configurations, that exit door assembly is removed and a non-opening plug is installed in its place. This is done to save the cost of regular maintenance and inspections on an exit door that isn't needed for the number of passengers aboard, plus the plug weighs much less than an exit door assembly.

The general thinking on Airliners.net was that the plug was bolted in because missing bolts would have been obvious during outfitting, but that said bolts must not have been torqued down properly and also not double-checked afterwards.
Everything I've seen says the fuselage arrived in Renton with the plug in place. What GGD said about torque.
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Re: Doorless Plane Did Not Have Bolts Installed On Door
Posted by: RAMd®d
Date: January 30, 2024 12:52PM
Still a lot of 'they said/they said' so far.

If the bolts and castellated nuts and cotter pins were in place, then torque wouldn't be a factor.

But I doubt there isn't a torque spec for those bolts.

Maybe somebody assume there was no torque spec because of the castellated nuts, and forgot to install cotter pins.

If there's no evidence of the nut being installed in the first place, I'd be really concerned.

I'm not sure which is worse — that it happened or that there seems to be no way do verify how it happened.

Ok, the former has the edge.

And I always were my seatbelt on a plane, even though turbulence has never made me glad I did.

I've worn seatbelts in a car as a ute, long before they were factory kit so it's NBD on a plane.






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Re: Doorless Plane Did Not Have Bolts Installed On Door
Posted by: macphanatic
Date: January 30, 2024 02:36PM
Quote
Ombligo
Boeing needs to put its workers through a competency test - have them assemble an Ikea bookcase.

Start with the C-Suite.
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