Four’s Front Office

WICHITA, KS — This is likely to be the first, and hopefully the last, FlightBlogger blog post from inside an active tornado warning which is in effect for the Wichita area.

Dreamliner Four forward fuselage, also known as Section 41, will be delivered to Everett next week on June 19. It will be the first 787 nose section with 100% completion of assembly.

It’s worth comparing these photos to those of Dreamliner Three from the Everett Final Assembly Line taken mid last month.

Click on each image for a high resolution version.




35 Responses to Four’s Front Office

  1. Mike June 13, 2008 at 1:27 am #

    Still far too many switches and knobs.
    I’d like more automation and those big horns of a ‘steering wheel’ need to go. A slide-away stick that would center in front of the driver would be more to my liking.

  2. Sandra June 13, 2008 at 5:04 am #

    Whaaat? No sidestick? No table?

  3. Randy Waldron June 13, 2008 at 9:53 am #

    A typical Boeing cockpit – really gorgeous! Thank God Boeing didn’t go with a sidestick, and I hope they never will!

  4. Chris June 13, 2008 at 10:15 am #

    No Airbus! The yoke needs to stay, it’s not as inobtrusive as it seems, it’s common to most other airliners, and it’s not Airbus.

  5. Joseph June 13, 2008 at 11:04 am #

    I’ve flown both the 737-family and the A320-family – give me a yoke in a crosswind but any other time I would prefer a sidestick!

  6. mataus ricardos June 13, 2008 at 1:33 pm #

    Apart from 5 large LCD screens, it’s the same old boring Boeing flight deck, looking the same as the early 80′s 75/76! Seems like a lot of talk for nothing!

  7. Joshua June 13, 2008 at 2:26 pm #

    I love it! the big displays and the design of the glaresheild. “it’s the same old boring Boeing flight deck, looking the same as the early 80′s 75/76!” ok, every airbus cockpit is the same old boring thing. keep the switches and knobs. with all the technology out there boeing still makes it look like a cockpit, boeing maintains its class.

  8. Dennis June 13, 2008 at 2:54 pm #

    Don’t know what you people are talking about . . . that cockpit is GORGEOUS! No sidestick, keep with the tradition and not be an Airbus! Keep up the good work, Boeing!!

  9. Nick June 13, 2008 at 6:48 pm #

    Yes keep it real! Boeing is the best far better then the airbus stupid side-stick! I love boeing and will continue to love it always! Havnt herd this yet”If It Aint Boeing I Aint Going!” I stand for this 110%. Go BOEING!

  10. Ricci Wilson June 13, 2008 at 7:07 pm #

    This cockpit is out dated guys! Such an advanced aircraft and you still got knobs and switches. I fly the B-777 and I know your going for the same type rating, But with an aircraft this advanced, dont leave us pilots out of the fun!

  11. Declan June 13, 2008 at 7:14 pm #

    looks old nothing new to look at

  12. Jason June 13, 2008 at 8:52 pm #

    C’mon people, it’s a cockpit. It looks great. And who cares as long as you get from point A to point B? Boeing is an aircraft manufacturing company, not an interior design firm.

  13. Eh June 13, 2008 at 10:58 pm #

    I’m always amused by people who slam the sidestick design because only Airbus seems to incorporate it. I suggest that airlines give the pilots what they want; if that happens to be a sidestick, forego “tradition” and put it in there. The same goes with knob and switch replacements.

  14. Matthew June 14, 2008 at 3:42 am #

    Three things…


    Why didn’t they make the yoke personally selectable. Keep a couple in the coat cupboard for those who can’t get over it. Preflight if prefered you could pull it out and shove it into a hole in the floor, this would disable their table and automatically stow a sidestick – thunderbirds style….
    Bet in a few months watching the other bloke putting his books/laptop/meal on his table the yokes would gather a lot of dust.


    What no manufacturer seams to get right are the sun shades…. Sounds like a small thing but the sun always gets in straight to you eyes wherever it can and this beast looks no better than most. Big thing for those of us that chase the sun or come on watch at dawn.

    Third and finally,

    What marketing design guru got his hands on the cockpit. Sorry but a few curvy overhead panels and advertising “787 dreamliner” don’t make the cockpit any more modern. A straight line on the top of the glareshield would be far more important – Captain’s going to land right wing down F/O left wing down – just like the A330….

    Regardless – pay me the money and I’ll fly it.

  15. Ed Ojeda June 14, 2008 at 6:35 am #

    Boeing..There is no substitute!(A Whale Pilot).

  16. Ricci Wilson June 14, 2008 at 12:26 pm #

    By the way Mr. “EH” that ‘nick’ posting was mine,Ricci,which my name was on the next posting with some one eles thoughts.Yes I’m a B-777 with types in other Boeing A/C. How can you say Im not a pilot and what I fly! I WILL be Flying this B787 because it WILL be the same type. Its the same cockpit as the B777 (overall,I know thiers some Dif.)But all I said was I wish it was ALL brand new! Dont get me wrong, this A/C is above all. That does include Airbus! Thanks!

  17. XBradTC June 14, 2008 at 4:52 pm #

    Not a pilot, but Bradley Fighting Vehicles had a yoke at the turret control for the gunner and a sidestick for the commander. For just slewing the turret on way or another, sidestick was fine, but for precision, I would prefer the yoke.

  18. Rick June 15, 2008 at 1:30 am #

    Probably the next generation of transports won’t have a flight deck. Heck, all they need is a small centralized avionics bay just forward of the wheel bays.
    Technology marches on.

  19. Giom June 15, 2008 at 5:26 am #

    John: Tuché!

    You can say alot about both – in the end they both work!

  20. J. Molund June 15, 2008 at 8:18 am #

    Looks like a nice office.

    By the look of the MCP, overhead panel and the pedestal one can clearly see that it’s a Boeing.

    Good thing that Boeing opted to keep the yoke, even if it has just artificial feedback it’s still bettter than a sidestick when it comes to crosswind landings, the tripple seven is a good example on that.

  21. yasobara June 15, 2008 at 11:43 am #

    HUD (Head Up Display)
    Since nobody seems to mention it, I would ask this question.
    What do you think of HUD?
    This is new for commercial airliner.
    Do you like it?
    Maybe you don’t know until you use it.
    Is there any pilot who used it out there?


  22. daavery June 15, 2008 at 5:50 pm #

    the HUD is not new. There are planes from the 727 to the 777 that have HUDs. A HUD has been a customer option on the 777 since it first flew. Alaska has HUDs on a bunch of their planes

  23. TomB June 15, 2008 at 10:59 pm #


    I Think that the yoke is always going to stay on Boeing aircraft because it is on of their staple images. Also the yoke is way better in emergency’s and better to use that a side stick.

  24. Gezwhu June 16, 2008 at 6:11 am #

    The Best plane is an Airbus but made by Boeing!!!

  25. Martin, Australia June 16, 2008 at 7:19 am #

    Along side the surveys Boeing did when looking at the Yoke is the feedback system. The vast Majority of pilots wanted their flight controls eg Yoke and Throttles to move with respect to the actual flight controls/engine settings, thus the Yoke and throttles will move in autopilot giving a visual que to the operation of the aircraft.

    There is no confusion, if the throttles are fully advanced the engines go to full power, if the autopilot rolls the aircraft left the yoke rolls left.

    Whats the Airbus saying? Oh yes…

    “Whats it doing now?”

  26. Dwight Looi June 16, 2008 at 10:27 am #

    Yoke vs Side Stick…

    (1) I guess the Yoke gives you finer control with two hands on the yoke — greater range of motion = finer adjustment precision. The central positioning and rotary roll action also promotes symmetrical human responses to either side which is not the case when you twist your wrist on a side stick configuration.

    (2) The biggest ergonomical problem I see with the Airbus configuration is not really the side stick per say but the fact that you have to fly left handed in one seat and right handed in the other.

    (3) On the plus side, the side stick stays out way of the pilot. And really, most of the time spent in the air does not see the pilots grabbing either the stick or the yoke, so having the implement tucked away is a luxury.

  27. Contrails June 16, 2008 at 11:59 am #

    The 787 has the yoke because the 777 and all before it have the yoke. One of their main focuses was a short transition course between the 777 and 787. (no, it won’t be a common type rating). For the same reason the flap lever has the same numbers on it as the 777 (and many before it), even though the flaps are actually nowhere near those numbers (it would have been a lot simpler to just go to 1,2,3,4 like Airbus).

    The crosswind issue is not a yoke/stick issue (though many infer that it is). In the Airbus airplanes, the stick roll-command is rate of roll just as it is on the 787 yoke. However, in the Airbus, once your desired sideslip bank angle is achieved, you must put the stick back to neutral. On the the 787, rudder pedals also induce a rate of role so you CAN cross control in a crosswind (the opposite rudder’s roll input cancels out the cross-controlled yoke input. The roll and yaw flight control laws are actually one law on the 787 (called P-beta). Boeing could have easily put in a sidestick and made it work just like the yoke does.
    Talking to Boeing flight control folks, and fielding their remarks about the sidestick, it is apparent to me that they didn’t really fully understand or appreciate the sidestick anyway. Much of it comes down to personal preference, as we see right here on this short comments list.

    The 787, like all previous Boeings before it, does require trim, and provides more feedback to the pilot through the yoke and thrust levers than the Airbus aircraft. Generally a good thing.
    Furthermore, I think the yoke/sidestick debate was over once they selected the yoke for the 777. After that “commonality” ruled the roost. It’s my understanding that the folks at UAL insisted on the yoke for the 777, but may have come to a different conclusion now that they have more Airbus experience. (I’m sure not all will agree with that).

    There are some other areas where Boeing failed to pickup damn good ideas from Airbus, such as: Managed speed in the terminal area (it’s all selected speed on the Boeings); Ground Speed Mini function (protection against decreasing headwind windshears on approach; no flaps one maximum extension speed symbol on the PFD; an angle of attack limit protection that allows for holding full back stick to achieve maximum performance maneuvers (terrain, traffic, etc.); allowing the selected heading bug to go away when in LNAV; going 250 (instead of 240) below 10,000; not automatically turning off the center tank pumps when they should be off, and some others.I don’t much care for the CDU emulation either (no hardware cdu, it’s just another display on the MFD (buttons and all), but it cuts down on parts, so the engineers (who don’t have to use it) and the bean counters love it.

  28. Truant June 16, 2008 at 2:22 pm #

    The 787 will be a fine plane to fly, and have a better safety record than the airbus.

    The A320 is one of the worst aircraft, because they took the pilot out of the seat (yes I prefer the yoke) and put some software programmer in the seat instead. Crash after crash because they lied to the pilot, or prevented the pilot from saving his own bottom (the weight on wheels limit switch that prevents use of the brakes is a great example).

    Boeing all the way. Still flown by pilots, world wide.

  29. Geek June 17, 2008 at 3:18 am #

    Awesome…. Plane… Looks Promising… Think Airbus Needs something special now….

  30. web design company June 17, 2008 at 4:56 am #

    but will it ever fly!???

  31. desyjean May 22, 2009 at 9:26 am #

    Well comparison between a Boeing and Airbus is like buying a Ferrari(Boeing) to a Lada(Airbus)

  32. LRSchultz November 22, 2009 at 3:52 pm #

    Why no sidestick? While to most pilots it will never make a difference, there will be 1 in a thousand pilots who will be very glad of a moving column, wheel and pedal when under automated control and that feedback tells him/her something is wrong…..

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