“Fly-em till they drop” has been the rule in the past few years as traffic growth and moderate oil prices have kept older jets in fleets and disassemblies averaging 400-500 a year at the most. But sooner or later—as fuel costs rise, traffic slows or aircraft just age out—old birds will head for teardown shops at a more normal pace of 900-plus annually. When that happens, new rules will be in place that should mean final farewells to aircraft will be done more ...

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