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Monday, January 26, 2004 - Page updated at 09:12 A.M.
From Wichita to Everett, Renton
Inside the main building last week, a worker carefully covered the surface of an aluminum sheet with intricate patterns of protective tape, preparing the panel to be dipped in caustic chemicals to thin the metal in precisely defined areas.
To a deafening hammer of rivet guns in the background, another team clambered over and under a 7E7 wing box, the part of the fuselage that bears the weight of the wings, drilling and fastening.
Farther along in the 737 flow, a female crew of sealers crawled inside a completed fuselage, the space reeking of solvent, sealing the metal joints.
The output of this intense labor heads straight to the Puget Sound region.
Nose-and-cockpit sections for the 747, 767 and 777 travel by rail to Everett for final assembly. Complete 737 nose-to-tail fuselage barrels, 737 vertical fins and horizontal stabilizers, and 757 fuselages in sections go by rail to Renton for final assembly.
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