DT Custom Models - Il-86s
Updated: September 2023
In this review I take a closer look at DT Customs Ilyushin Il-86s. For more about DT Customs see the header page:
Above: The JC Wings Il-86 releases Đặng Tùng has used as his donor model
The welcome reappearance of the JC Wings Il-86 has enabled these excellent customs to be made.
The Il-86 'Camber' has been featured at the avhistory blog where I have discussed its career and shortcomings. Although without doubt a safe and reliable machine its short range and general obsolescence limited its potential. Read more here:
Despite, or perhaps because, of its size the Il-86 had a surprisingly active secondary career with CIS airlines, many of whom often operated their aircraft in variations on the standard Aeroflot scheme well into the 2000s. This has provided fertile ground for custom models using the basic Aeroflot cheatlines. The result has been the following 6 Il-86s so far:
Atlant-Soyuz operated an impressive 11 Il-86s at one time or another mostly taking them in the period 2002-2006. By 2005 it was the 5th largest airline in Russia. RA-86138 was a very late production aircraft built in 1993. It was operated by a series of small operators (VIA Viktor Airlines, Moscow Airways and Continental Airways) prior to joining Atlant in April 2006. It was stored in December 2010 but not broken up until mid-2017.
Kazakhstan Airlines was formed in 1991 but survived only until August 20, 1996. Its successor Air Kazakhstan operated 7 Il-86s and presumably most of these were ex-Kazakhstan Airlines aircraft. This 1990 build aircraft initially operated with full Aeroflot titles but a Kazakh flag on the tail, however it took up the rather nice Kazakhstan Airlines tail between July 1994 and August 1995. Interestingly photos show this aircraft still wearing this scheme and titles in June 2001.
Kras Air became a serious player in the Russian market in the mid-2000s and operated 7 Il-86s including a pair that had been delivered to China Xinjiang. All were relatively new machines built between 1989-1991. This aircraft had flown with Aeroflot but was in service with Kras Air by 2000 wearing these hybrid colours. It was still in this scheme in October 2003 but had been repainted into Kras Air standard colours by late 2005. RA-86137 was still in service in October 2008 the month that Kras Air and its AiRUnion partners collapsed.
Pulkovo, Aeroflot's ex-St Petersburg division, was a major Russian operator in the late 90s but didn't gain its own identity until 1997. It flew 9 Il-86s including RA-86073. Interestingly this aircraft never gained the Pulkovo identity and instead merely added large Pulkovo titles to the standard Aeroflot scheme. It got around, with images available of it at destinations as far flung as Barcelona, Dusseldorf and Beijing. It remained in service until at least the end of 2005 and was broken up in 2007. In 2006 Pulkovo was merged into Rossiya. Even so, some Pulkovo Il-86s were still flying in Pulkovo colours in November 2008.
Sibir operated 15 Il-86s over the years including at least 8 examples that had flown in the 2000s with Pulkovo. The rest of the fleet was transferred from Aeroflot in the early 90s. This frame was built in 1987 and passed through the Pulkovo fleet joining Sibir by mid-2003. It was used on tourist routes such as Dubrovnik, Larnaca and Phuket. The new S7 logo was added in 2006 but never gained the new colours. It was still in use in mid-2008 but seemingly out of service stored at Novosibirsk by early 2009.
Uzbekistan Airways has been one of the more successful CIS Aeroflot successor airlines. It inherited 10 Il-86s when it was formed in 1992 and flew in multiple colour schemes. The first was simply replacing the titles and adding the new Uzbek flag to the tail. At least one of the aircraft, UK-86090, was still valued enough to get repainted into the carrier's new blue top scheme in 2004. It is difficult to get much information on the career of UK-86072. It appears to have been in storage by 1997 on the Tashkent ramp. Put up for sale in 2007 it never got a lot of usage as it only had a total time of 15,198 hours and 4,613 landings.