Time Waster: Fixing an airliner in 2 minutes

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What happens when someone dents an airliner at an airport? It need to get taken apart and fixed. For one of the more unsung jobs on the planet, there are 500 applications for every opening.

The Smithsonian’s Air & Space Magazine is out today with a story about how that happens, and a Boeing video that reduces it to a couple of minutes.


Some of the feats the Boeing AOG operation has performed are commercial aviation legends. In 1988, a 747 aborting a takeoff bellied into a mud flat adjacent to New Delhi airport. Fully 70 percent of the airplane required AOG repair or replacement, at a total cost of $75 million. Then a mechanic, Testin worked 126 days straight in a circus-size tent dubbed the New Delhi Dome. Boeing returned the resurrected jumbo as pristine as one just off the assembly line. Two decades later, it’s still flying.

If you don’t want to read the story, you can go right to the video.

  • MR

    I went to college with someone who was on the grounds crew for Mesaba. He was told on his first day, “If you do anything that causes damage to a plane, stop what you’re doing, punch out, and leave. You’re fired immediately and we’ll send you your last paycheck.”