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A decade after debut, first A380 jumbos to be broken up

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posted on Jun, 6 2018 @ 12:50 PM
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Its a bit shocking although I'm not all that surprised. Two of the four A380's that SIA returned after the lease lease agreement expired will be broken up. The leasing company which has been unable to find a customer for the aircraft will instead scrap two of them and part them out. These planes were long haul which means despite being ten years old they should have relatively low cycles

The airframes which are being stored in France, would cost up to 40 million to reconfigure which may have killed any interest. They also are earlier models so they may be heavier etc. This still should have an impact on the secondary markets for used 380's down the road as well.

The lack of a Freighter version would also make it difficult to re-purpose these aircraft.

www.yahoo.com...




posted on Jun, 6 2018 @ 01:03 PM
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originally posted by: FredT
Its a bit shocking although I'm not all that surprised. Two of the four A380's that SIA returned after the lease lease agreement expired will be broken up. The leasing company which has been unable to find a customer for the aircraft will instead scrap two of them and part them out. These planes were long haul which means despite being ten years old they should have relatively low cycles

The airframes which are being stored in France, would cost up to 40 million to reconfigure which may have killed any interest. They also are earlier models so they may be heavier etc. This still should have an impact on the secondary markets for used 380's down the road as well.

The lack of a Freighter version would also make it difficult to re-purpose these aircraft.

www.yahoo.com...


Couldn't the military buy them and repurpose them for disaster aid relief? Though I guess they have Hercules transport aircraft for that.

The aviation industry thought there were going to be two possible futures. One was that air traffic would increase and everything would be based around hubs for long distance international routes. Everyone would fly from a small airport to a large international airport and then to another country.

The other was that increasing fuel efficiency and lighter materials would allow smaller airports to handle longer distance traffic using a network of frequent short-hop flights. We do that in Europe; Stansted to Trondheim via Amsterdam and Oslo in three flights within six hours.



posted on Jun, 6 2018 @ 01:24 PM
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a reply to: FredT

They can't even sell used A380s to parts companies because it's such a risk. One of the companies was offered these two aircraft at an obvious break up price and they passed on them.



posted on Jun, 6 2018 @ 03:12 PM
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originally posted by: stormcell
Couldn't the military buy them and repurpose them for disaster aid relief? Though I guess they have Hercules transport aircraft for that.


The engineering, design and conversion would probably cost more than the aircraft are worth. When Boeing built the 747 they developed a cargo version at the same time, so the conversion was easier.
I worked on a 747 passenger conversion a while back. It is a bit more complicated than people realize. Installing the cargo door was extremely interesting. We had to do the structure from the inside out so that the airframe didn't collapse.



posted on Jun, 6 2018 @ 03:26 PM
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a reply to: FredT

Bring them to the states. Make them into tankers.



posted on Jun, 6 2018 @ 03:50 PM
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a reply to: Sammamishman

The airframes would be shot because of the amount of time it would take the FAA to approve the conversion design.



posted on Jun, 6 2018 @ 04:14 PM
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With such a small life span is the A380 and I use the term mildly .. a waste of time? Will this be the last large passenger plane to be built ?? Genuine curious questions.



posted on Jun, 6 2018 @ 06:13 PM
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originally posted by: ThePeaceMaker
With such a small life span is the A380 and I use the term mildly .. a waste of time? Will this be the last large passenger plane to be built ?? Genuine curious questions.


The A380 was about Ego and bad forecasting IMHO. Boeing had models on the drawing boards that would have competed in terms of capacity and elected NOT to go foreward with it. The inherent efficiencies of twins and ultimately the preference for point to point travel versus a hub and spoke model that won the day



posted on Jun, 7 2018 @ 12:42 AM
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I'm a bit puzzled by this thread. What is so shocking about it? Do a bit of searching and you find this really isn't an unusual time frame at all. For example an aircraft that has been highly successful had its first scrapping after barely 11 years 777. As for Zaphs comment about not being even able to sell them for scrap and part out, Dr Peters has stated that they are looking at around 50 million worth of components. And I can tell you from experience that those parts will be snapped up ASAP by people like Spairliners, as there is very heavy demand and a lack of supply for some components. The engines themselves have already been removed and sent back to RR where they have joined the world wide pool of engines. They are getting something like $480,000 per month for them. The issue with a number of scrappers not being interested probably had more to do with the complexity of the task, current regulations regarding recycling and dealing with materials that many traditional scrappers dont deal in like GLARE.



posted on Jun, 7 2018 @ 01:53 AM
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a reply to: thebozeian
The point is Airbus has a hard time finding customoers for the aircraft period. As an buisness investment the project was a failure.



posted on Jun, 7 2018 @ 08:44 AM
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a reply to: thebozeian

And yet one of the bigger companies known for aftermarket parts passed on the offer for exactly these same aircraft, despite the amount of money involved.



posted on Jun, 7 2018 @ 09:08 AM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

I'm thinking they looked at the long term investment/monetary returns ratio and saw it was a loosing deal. Only 222 A380's were built with many of those customers looking at how to get rid of them. That is not going to keep the parts biz flowing for a long time. Unlike the 777 which have 1500+ and counting units built and is a much more of a lucrative segment.



posted on Jun, 7 2018 @ 09:18 AM
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a reply to: Sammamishman

Exactly. Short term, it's a great deal, but if you can't offload those parts fast enough, you're risking a kick in the teeth. These aftermarket guys know the market extremely well, just because of that.



posted on Jun, 7 2018 @ 12:17 PM
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a reply to: thebozeian

Some of the point is the bad bet Airbus made (or was forced to make) on the A380. The 777 you refer to (an Ex BA) was a low gross weight version and not the LR/ER most want so that may have factored into it) I also think it had higher cycles on it.

Add to the fact that a relatively new , low cycle, flagship (or vanity project) airframe, without a newer variant is deemed more valuable to breakup than to keep trying to wedge into service.

Regardless of if/when the parts can or cannot be used. Also If I'm correct the Trent 900's are used by around what 7-8 other airlines (Not Emirates BTW) so they may have life but not as other airlines stop using them as well.



posted on Jun, 7 2018 @ 12:18 PM
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Although with our current POTUS scrap aluminum may soon double in price



posted on Jun, 7 2018 @ 03:42 PM
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a reply to: FredT

Just to point out that the A380 is still in production, albeit at a low rate ( in response to “only 222 were built”). Emirates have a requirement for a further 100 aircraft and they have switched to RR Trent power for their new purchases.

While it may appear shocking that a ten year old frame is being parted out, I also have to point out that this happens relatively commonly, including a nearly new A320 broken up at Kemble last year, and there are thousands of those. I think it’s made the news because it’s the first A380 to be broken up, but it offers no more insight into the state of the programme than the fact that one wasn’t broken up last month, lol.


edit on 7-6-2018 by waynos because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 7 2018 @ 04:38 PM
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a reply to: waynos

Yes, thank you for the clarification. There have been 222 built as of March of this year, with a total of 331 ordered by all customers. I believe Emirates have 62 left to fill their current order tally.



posted on Jun, 9 2018 @ 09:34 AM
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a reply to: Sammamishman

Yes. I'm not saying the programme isn't struggling massively, because it is. I think Airbus are still hopeful of movement in the far east where 747's are commonly used on domestic flights, but very little seems to be happening. Its very odd that Emirates is so enamoured of the A380 that they can hardly get enough of them, and are the only airline in the world that thinks that way.

edit on 9-6-2018 by waynos because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 11 2018 @ 06:33 AM
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a reply to: Sammamishman
As far as I am aware the only customer who has publicly stated that they wish to offload their 380's has been MAS. But then they have never had a great reputation for fleet management, and I was aware more than 12 months before it was public that they just didn't get the aircraft and were looking to sell or lease the fleet. It would appear they believed the early sales pitches from Airbus and woefully under resourced themselves. As I said I was aware long before it hit the papers that they had problems with a MAS engineer informing me that they only trained up 2 licensed guys to deal with a fleet of 6 aircraft, that's just ludicrous but ball park in line with early projections we based our workforce off. It seems that the EK along with later adopters of the 380 ignored those fake sales pitches and used the experience of early adopting airlines like SIA etc. Point of fact, BA and Willie Walsh have on numerous occasions stated they are very happy with the aircraft (as has Tim Clark and other operators) and would happily take more for both BA and the wider IAG fleet if Airbus would drop the high price tag. Talking with BA engineers I find that to be echoed at ground level too.

I make no secret that I am in favour of the aircraft, I was initially hostile towards it, then skeptical, followed by grudging respect. However I would now say I am a moderate fan of it. It has flaws, some of them deep ones, but when you run it right as some airlines do it works. I honestly believe its major three problems are no real freight capacity/dedicated freighter, a negative image borne out of some airlines just not getting it and its at least 10 years too early. Yes it most definitely was an ego project, but there is a place for it, just not in the kind of numbers the 747 was in its heyday of the early to mid 90's.

Zaph, I understand your point that a number of recycler's are not interested in it, but it may also be that with no experience of trading in its spares and with a relatively small fleet it wasn't seen as worth gearing up for it. There is certainly no end of demand for A-380 components I am forever dealing with it, particularly when you see some of the ridiculous lead times for critical spares from Airbus and it isn't just us, Emirates guys have complained that even as the largest operator they constantly have aircraft sitting on the fence awaiting parts. There seems to be a very laissez-faire attitude to helping out customers with it, which is somewhat of a French "Gallic shrug" phenomena it seems.

All up 10 years after the first one is broken up I predict that there will be a renewed interest in the 380 from ever constrained airport slots. Whether the aircraft survives long enough in production to warrant demand for a NEO second coming or not remains to be seen.



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