Last week, employees started to assemble the wings for the first MAX flight test airplane. Wings are the first components to be assembled in the Renton production process.
Machine operators loaded MAX wing skin panels and stringers into the new panel assembly line that uses automation to drill holes and install fasteners in the upper and lower wing panels. Mechanics also loaded the initial parts of the first Auburn single wing spars — internal support structures in wings — into automated spar assembly machines.
When finished, the panels and spars will be transformed into completed wings. The new production line will allow the team to isolate the first MAX build from the rest of production in order to learn and perfect the build process while auburn single wing Renton factory continues to build at a rate of 42 airplanes a month.
Beginning inthe new single-aisle airplane will deliver 20 percent lower fuel use than the first Next-Generation s and the lowest operating costs in its class — 8 percent per seat less than its nearest competitor.
To date, the MAX has 2, orders from 57 customers worldwide.