The Tristar 500 is significantly different to the standard length Tristar and yet of the 5 existing moulds for the type only 1 (Dragon Wings) has recognised more than half the differences meaning there are almost no correct Tristar 500s available. Sadly Gemini's new 2018 Tristar 500 mould is little better than their 1999 offering for accuracy. Fortunately 2019 looks like it’ll bring two much better new Tristar 500s so what should be made on them?
Even before Gemini turned up with a new series 500 mould the majority of possible Tristar 500s had already been made – 59 in fact (mostly Blue Box). So, this list is going to be full of remakes, but remakes that will be widely sought out. Even after Gemini’s painful United and Pan Am examples I expect further examples will still sell well.
Here's a list of 34 Tristar 500s that could see the light in 2019/2020:
BA was in dire financial straits at the time so its own Tristar 500s didn't last long before sale to the RAF. Even so they later leased some Air Lanka examples so the Tristar 500 wore 3 different liveries in BA service plus also served briefly with British Airtours as well for 4 possibles:
Pan Am / United / Delta
Pan Am's Tristar 500s also didn't last long as the Pacific routes they served (and the Tristars themselves) were sold to United, with whom likewise their careers were short. Delta at least appreciated the L-1011 and its series 500s had long careers.
Ac also didn't get full use of its 500s and they were sold on to Delta relatively quickly.
The Tristar 500 better suited small national carriers and several got good use from their Tristar 500s.
BWIA's L-1011s wore three variants of two main schemes. Note the different titles on the older colours:
ALIA - Royal Jordanian
RJ was one of the Tristar 500s best customers and early in their service the type wore several scheme variants.
TAP Air Portugal
TAP's Tristars also had a good service history.
Charter airlines looking for widebody capacity (or the flexibility of having smaller L1011s than their existing standard Tristars) were major users of the L-1011-500.
American Trans Air
Of course there have also been plenty of unusual Tristar 500 operators who have used the type on lease or for brief periods - including some larger airlines.
Hewa Bora Airways
The Saudis operated a Tristar 500 as part of the Royal flight
I'm Richard Stretton: a fan of 1/400 scale model aircraft and airports. This blog reports work on my model airport dioramas and discussion of the model manufacturers output.