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Ebay shipping time machine


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On 12/11/2020 at 5:31 PM, 240260280 said:

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I placed an order a month ago. Tracking showed it at the originating post office the second day.

The package is still showing at that location, with an ETA of November 12.

I contacted the seller over a week ago, who started an investigation with USPS, which said they would have an answer in 24 hours.

Oh, and they are blaming Covid.

 

 

 

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I work in the shipping and freight industry as many of you know. We have unprecedented volume right now that we cannot absorb overnight . Pre-Christmas we were at almost full capacity with 80,000 trucks and 621 airplanes. The combination of a steady decline in brick and mortar store sales vs online sales was thrown upside down when COVID hit and as of last week with vaccine shipping taking priority there is only so much freight that can be moved. We are working our tails off to meet demand. We are hiring hundreds pilots in the next year and 1000’s of employees to work ramps and hubs. It’s not easy to expand capacity as rapidly as demand can increase.


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58 minutes ago, Av8ferg said:

I work in the shipping and freight industry as many of you know. We have unprecedented volume right now that we cannot absorb overnight . Pre-Christmas we were at almost full capacity with 80,000 trucks and 621 airplanes. The combination of a steady decline in brick and mortar store sales vs online sales was thrown upside down when COVID hit and as of last week with vaccine shipping taking priority there is only so much freight that can be moved. We are working our tails off to meet demand. We are hiring hundreds pilots in the next year and 1000’s of employees to work ramps and hubs. It’s not easy to expand capacity as rapidly as demand can increase.


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UPS, or FedEx?

I’m currently helping to build another FedEx 767.

 

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18 hours ago, Av8ferg said:

FedEx...our new 767’s are fantastic, keep up the great work. We’re buying a lot of them


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Nice to hear the pilots who fly our airplanes like them, and yes, FedEx is currently buying more 767 freighters than any other company. We just finished up the 101st FedEx freighter forward body section, it is going through shake and will be off to seal and paint by the first of the year.

I was reassigned to the 767 program last September, having worked the 777 (legacy, metal wings) program for nearly 6 years, first in wing majors (the wing final assembly shop) building the upper trailing edge of the wings, and then the 777 (again, the legacy plane) spars, on the front spars for a few months, then rear spars for 4 years. With the 777X going into production, the production rates have slowed as they integrate the two lines (when I started the rate for 777 was 2.5 days, then dropped to 3 days, then 6 days, then 7 days, and last winter it slowed to 14 days), coupled with the 737 issues, and this Covid 19 thing the company has been trying to avoid layoffs by shifting labor to other programs where staffing needs a boost, so quite a few structures mechanics have been moved from 777/777X to the 767 program. They have moved me 5 times since last February, including spending the summer on the flightline doing refurb work on a 777X that was built last year and has been in storage, and a short stint as a provisioner for the 777X systems integration final assembly, and been sent home 3 times for Covid contact tracing quarantine.

I wasn't too enthusiastic about having to work bodies on the B deck, as my knees don't tolerate the crawling around on the stringers and floor frames, but the crew I landed on is a great bunch of guys and gals, the work isn't as physically demanding as the wing structures work, and the actual work packages are not as demanding with respect to the time given to complete the jobs (the 767 program is at a 7 day rate at the moment). Add to that the privilege of working on the KC-46 tankers, and that I only have about 8 months to retirement, I feel I can manage and be content there.

And I really like what I do, which makes it less like work, and more enjoyable. It is awesome being part of the teams that create these fantastic airplanes. The best of the best. Every time I see one taking off or coming in to land I have to stop and watch it. Airplanes are second only to cars for me, magnificent machines that look great coming and going, or just resting quietly on the ground.

In three and a half months I have seen more FedEx planes than UPS, and every second plane is a KC-46. So there is variety to the daily routine.

 

 

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Very cool what you do. Airplanes have been part of my life since I was a young kid. Like you, having a passion for what you do makes it almost not feel like work. I’m currently flying the 757 but I am type rated in both the 757 and 767. I almost moved to the 767 last month because there is a really nice pay bump but I’d lose seniority and control of my schedule. Quality of life over money, it’s a value decision that many don’t understand. Most guys chase the $$. I commute on our 767 and everyone loves them, minus the bathroom in the cockpit. That was a UPS build spec that we didn’t want to pay to change but that’s the only complaint. The rest of our aircraft have the bathroom behind the cockpit door. We did have an accident in LAX in a brand new 767 about 8 weeks ago. One of the main landing gear failed to extend and the emergency system failed also. Really a 1.000,000 to 1 odds. Pilot climbing out of the window of the cockpit had a minor injury.
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These plans are a joy to fly and so reliable it amazes me. In the four years I’ve been with them, I’ve never had a flight cancelled due to a maintenance related issue, only declared an emergency once when a throttle cable got water in it and froze one the throttle levers. When I flew fighters in the USMC the jets broke about 30% of the time you tried to fly and I declared an emergency about 3 times a month.


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[mention=31874]Racer X[/mention], [mention=15315]Pilgrim[/mention], [mention=32672]Av8ferg[/mention], so what do you guys think about the fix for the 737 Max?  Other than its tendency to nosedive it really is a remarkable make over from the old version.

There is a lot to discuss on this topic. I’ll try and distill it down as briefly as possible.
1. The 737 Max was crashed by two foreign airlines. This is an important data point. I’ll start by saying if you board an Ethiopian airline and don’t have your life insurance policy up to date then you are foolish. The US has the highest standards for airline pilots in the world. If you are flying on a large carrier like AA or Delta or SWA then I can assure you the pilots are highly trained, experienced and proficient. The FAA has placed such stringent standards on US pilots that I can promise you that your are in good hands. We go through psychology exams, personality tests, cognitive tests and difficult aviation knowledge tests. You can’t fly for a large US carrier unless you have extensive experience with 1000’s of hours in command in a airplane. Not the case overseas. There is a major pilot shortage in the world. I cannot say that you are safe when you fly a low budget foreign airline. My buddy flew the 737 at SWA and said he loved it.
2. When the jet does something unexpected or you that you don’t like the first thing you do is turn off the automation. You cannot wait until you are in a 40 deg dive to make that decision, it has to be made right away. These crashes the pilots waited to long to intervene. Where I work we hand fly all takeoffs and landings. We don’t hand it over to the auto pilot anywhere near the ground. I typically put the autopilot on at 18,000’. I disarm it about 12 miles prior to landing.
3. Boeing didn’t fully explain the MCAS system they put in the jet. It was installed to counter the pitch up on takeoff because of powerful under slung engines. They also didn’t have redundancy in the AOA probe. A single failure on this probe and you get bad outcomes from MCAS. They have dual and triple redundancy in all about systems but didn’t here.

I’m confident this wouldn’t have happened on a US carrier.


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3 hours ago, grannyknot said:

@Racer X, @Pilgrim, @Av8ferg, so what do you guys think about the fix for the 737 Max?  Other than its tendency to nosedive it really is a remarkable make over from the old version.

Well first, I don't know enough about the circumstances on the two planes that crashed to make any comments, or come to any conclusions.

Second, because I am an employee of the company that produces that airplane, I am prohibited from commenting.

 

I can say this.

There have been enough people working on a solution, at Boeing, the FAA, the TSB, etc, that the 737 Max is probably the safest commercial airliner to fly on now.

And @Av8ferg is spot on with his observations.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I think a reasonable person would wonder why the President of the United States needs to draft Executive Orders concerning regulation of the industry.  Overall, there are signs that the urge to let industries self-regulate leads to monetization of safety.  From a business perspective it might be cheaper to pay the court costs and settlements than to assure the safety of an aircraft.  Business is about return on investment, nothing more.  

https://www.forbes.com/sites/marisagarcia/2019/03/18/did-trump-executive-orders-further-weaken-faa-oversight/?sh=97b1a353ca78

Pay the money, move on and make more.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-ethiopia-airplane-victims/boeing-to-pay-737-max-crash-victims-families-144500-each-idUSKBN1W8288

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No offense AV8 but here is a famous American carrier accident.  My point is that "management" will always be looking for ways to cut costs, and many managers are fine with taking chances with other people's safety.

https://www.cnn.com/2020/01/28/us/space-shuttle-challenger-34-years-scn-trnd/index.html

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I am under no constraints as to commentary or opinion; keep in mind that my comments are worth what they cost you.  

I felt a lot better about Boeing management before they decided that they needed to be in Chicago. I am thoroughly tired of companies abandoning their heritage and the cities that nurtured and built them. I suspect this is a common source of some frustration in many people around the Pacific NW.

From the news and articles I read, it sounded like a critical component of the failure was a single attitude sensor which fed data to the plane. Why there would be only one sensor has never been clear to me and sounded like a single point of failure, which is unthinkable on a passenger aircraft. I also haven't heard that they have added additional sensors to provide backup and avoid the potential single point of failure.  This makes no sense to me. I may have misunderstood this, but it is pretty clear in my memory.

I buy the argument that US pilots are better trained than those of many other countries, especially such countries as Ethiopia, which have a reputation for being lax in all kinds of oversight. I also buy the argument that the first thing a smart pilot will do is turn off the automatics and fly it manually. (I've heard this can't be done in new fighter jets, but we're not talking fighter jets.) A good driver or pilot has to have great hands and great feel for the machine and what it's doing. It's pretty clear that the crashes by foreign airlines involved pilots without the sense to turn off the automatic systems and fly the damn plane.  

So I'm willing to assume that Boeing has fixed their software and changed or updated hardware if needed, but I assume this only because they got an internationally publicized proctological exam over this aircraft, leading to possibly their biggest financial setback in history - which is probably the only thing that the Chicago brass hats care about. My faith in any company's willingness to do "the right thing" if it costs them more money is very limited.  

But it's pretty clear that Boeing is in deep trouble if this aircraft isn't totally right. Therefore I'm willing to bet they got it right.  

Would I be comfortable flying in one of them? Maybe a year or two from now.  

 

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No offense AV8 but here is a famous American carrier accident.  My point is that "management" will always be looking for ways to cut costs, and many managers are fine with taking chances with other people's safety.
https://www.cnn.com/2020/01/28/us/space-shuttle-challenger-34-years-scn-trnd/index.html

No offense taken but this story has nothing to do with the quality of the US pilot population and the failure of 737 max. This is an area I do consider myself an expert unlike how to fix my Z.
I have an aerospace degree from the nation’s leading aviation university, I have a another degree in aviation safety. I have so many hours that I don’t ever keep a logbook anymore. I have been the lead investigator on numerous aviation mishaps sorting through wreckage to determine causal factors and writing the final mishap report. I’ve watched my friends be placed in coffins with loved ones in tears. The failures in aviation that lead to crashes are predicable, have common causes and preventable. It’s a wholistic approach..a man, machine, system integration. All have to be right for the relationship to work. Good pilot, flying a bad airline or poorly designed system is a accident waiting to happen. Bad pilot flying a good airplane has it dangers too.
I flew the Harrier for 20 years....it’s a death trap. Trying to kill you every time you start the engine. It requires unbelievable training and proficiency to be safe and fly it effectively. It took 30 years to get this plane to any semblance of “safe”. I lost 2 jets when I was a squadron commander. We had no automation in those planes. We have killed 65 pilots in the plane since it came to our flight lines.
Automation has made commercial aviation much safer but it has it dangers too. You can’t blindly trust it, you have to be ready and trained to be in 100% control. Airbus and Boeing have completely different approaches to automation. On an Airbus you are a voting member, you cannot completely override the airplane, it won’t let you do many things. The design philosophy is “we engineers won’t let you get in a dangerous place and the jet will stop you if you try”. This led to many early airbus accidents, like the stall on takeoff of an airbus in Paris leading to a terrible crash. When you have a system, sensor failure feeding bad info to a computer that is the final decider you are in trouble. Not the case in a Boeing product. In the end you can disconnect all the computers and automation and fly with old school stick and rudder skills. Yes, you can stall it, over speed or over G it. You might have to to save the plane. Automation is great, it reduces fatigue so when you come to land the pilot is not exhausted from 5 hour of hand flying. But most of you don’t know, all the landings are being flown by hand. Only in rare cases do we let the jet land and those are Cat3 approaches that the weather is so poor that a pilot cannot see the runway to land at 50’. I’ve done 3 of these and they scare the crap out of me . Trusting the jet to land.
We use what’s called the “Swiss Cheese” model to reduce accidents, impeded the error chain of event and improve safety. Look it up and you can see what layers we use to stop a single event to lead to a crash.

Here is a fantastic article I think you should read. It is tantalizing for me as a pilot. The airbus has no AOA “angle of attack” indicator which is so crazy it boggles my mind. It is the most important instrument in an airplane and tells you if the how close the wing is to stall. The airbus doest provide this information to pilots and all these people on this Air France jet died because of it, but the first officer also had very low flight hours which was causal. He wouldn’t have been allowed to sit in a jet like this in the US. They stalled the plane from 38,000’ until it impacted the water after a momentary induction glitch due to icing.

The Challenger crash was caused my a systematic leadership failure at Morton Thyicol and NASA. Pressure to to fly when they knew the o-rings were susceptible to failure at low temperatures and pressure from leadership to fly regardless of the risk.

We can discuss the FAA issue as well. It’s complicated. My neighbor is a high ranking FAA employee and I hear about all the challenges that are facing.

Read this article:

https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.vanityfair.com/news/business/2014/10/air-france-flight-447-crash/amp


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6 hours ago, Av8ferg said:

The Challenger crash was caused my a systematic leadership failure at Morton Thyicol and NASA. Pressure to to fly when they knew the o-rings were susceptible to failure at low temperatures and pressure from leadership to fly regardless of the risk.

We can discuss the FAA issue as well. It’s complicated. My neighbor is a high ranking FAA employee and I hear about all the challenges that are facing.

You kind of helped my point at the end.  The FAA is certainly worse now, more hollowed out and focused on profits for the businesses than safety.  That's what the Executive Orders were about, less regulation = more profits.  This has happened across all of the "watchdog" agencies, including the intelligence agencies.  So, what could be and what is are two very different things.  I will avoid the Max if I can, even after the supposed fixes.  It was clear from the various reports that even the pilots, like yourself, were kept in the dark about the truth.  There's no reason to believe that things are different now.  We can all hope, but belief would be  long stretch.

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And, of course, the coverup almost always exposes the guilty parties.  Sorry, I wish it wasn't true.  But in my field, we have to believe what the facts tell us.

https://www.theverge.com/2020/12/18/22189609/faa-boeing-737-max-senate-report-coverup-tests-whistleblowers

Boeing and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) worked together to manipulate 737 Max recertification tests following two fatal crashes in 2018 and 2019, according to a damning new Senate report. Boeing “inappropriately coached” some FAA test pilots to reach a desired outcome during the recertification tests, and some were even performed on simulators that weren’t equipped to re-create the same conditions as the crashes.

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Here are the bullet points from the Senate report.  "The FAA continues to retaliate"...  Why would they do that?

https://www.commerce.senate.gov/2020/12/wicker-releases-committee-s-faa-investigation-report

Some of the report’s more significant findings include:

  • FAA senior managers have not been held accountable for failure to develop and deliver adequate training in flight standards, despite repeated findings of deficiencies over several decades.
  • The FAA continues to retaliate against whistleblowers instead of welcoming their disclosures in the interest of safety.
  • The Department of Transportation Office of General Counsel (DOT OGC) failed to produce relevant documents requested by Chairman Wicker as required by Article I, Section I of the Constitution.
  • The FAA repeatedly permitted Southwest Airlines to continue operating dozens of aircraft in an unknown airworthiness condition for several years. These flights put millions of passengers at risk.
  • During 737 MAX recertification testing, Boeing inappropriately influenced FAA human factor simulator testing of pilot reaction times involving a Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System (MCAS) failure.
  • FAA senior leaders may have obstructed a DOT OIG review of the 737 MAX crashes.
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UPS in Birmingham, AL.

In 2014, the Independent Pilots Association filed suit against the FAA to end the cargo airplane exemption from the flight crew minimum rest requirements.[18] In 2016 the lawsuit was dismissed by a Washington, DC court, which determined the FAA had acted reasonably by excluding cargo airlines from the rest requirement based on a cost vs benefits analysis.

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UPS in Birmingham, AL.
In 2014, the Independent Pilots Association filed suit against the FAA to end the cargo airplane exemption from the flight crew minimum rest requirements.[18] In 2016 the lawsuit was dismissed by a Washington, DC court, which determined the FAA had acted reasonably by excluding cargo airlines from the rest requirement based on a cost vs benefits analysis.

We are the leader in the aviation industry on crew rest and we didn’t want the imposed FAA rules on rest because It would have made things worse because of when and how we operate. It’s complicated but the devil is in the details.
The UPS crash in Birmingham was purely human error and complacency on the crew. I’ve listened to the cockpit voice recorder in that mishap and we did a case study on it at work last month.
On ZHs point. The FAA doesn’t have the depth of professionals to be able to get in the weeds on all new processes and equipment. This sort of stuff has been happening in aviation since its dawn. Regulation is a double edge sword. Not all regulations make us safer, some do the opposite. Most are well intended but fail to see second and third order effects. We get better every year, and we have to have some faith in manufactures. Just like the FDA, it’s not a perfect system. Boeing screwed this one up and they have paid dearly with their reputation and financially. Could have killed the company. Aviation safety is written and progressed in blood. Your greatest risk of dying in a plane is toxic smoke inhalation and manufactures still haven’t changed materials and made it a priority. They’ve already made the cost analysis and it’s cheaper to keep the current materials the standard when they look at the financial risk.
I think one the biggest threats to safety and quality in many industries is Wall Street. People only care about quarterly profits. This ultimately hurts the American consumer in so many ways. Companies make poor decisions to meet quarterly profit goals. I don’t know what the financial or engineering reason Boeing chose to not support MCAS with a redundant indicting system. It was probably due to cost but it’s a guess and maybe the FAA was too much imbed with the company. We need to get lobbyist out of Washington...they are the greatest threat to Americans in so many ways, especially in Pharma and medical devices but also in many other critical industries and environmental areas.


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29 minutes ago, Av8ferg said:

 

I think one the biggest threats to safety and quality in many industries is Wall Street. People only care about quarterly profits. This ultimately hurts the American consumer in so many ways. 

And our pensions and retirement plans are leveraged on the performance of Wall Street.

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