When NG Models sent me the A320 moulds there was a conspicuous absence. Although they provided four A320 samples, covering both the A320ceo and neos, they did not provide an A320-100. Speaking with them they have now confirmed they will make a series 100 so let's take a look at that version, what has been made and what can be made on the original baby bus.
The Tristar 500 is another of the classic moulds owned by NG Models they seem to have rather lost faith in, despite its excellence. Obviously the situation isn't helped by the electroplating issues NG has had with its natural metal belly L-1011s but there remains quite a bit to be made and I am rather impatient to see more. Here's an updated wishlist for the type taking into account production so far.
The Tu-154 eventually gathered a rather poor reputation in Iran with nicknames such as 'Death Bird' due to various crashes, however the type was instrumental in getting many Iranian airlines into the air and saw wide service prior to it being banned in February 2010. As a collector of both curiosities and Iranian airliners the new NG mould would look great wearing these colours.
NG Models have had their 747SP mould in use since August 2020 and I admit to being rather disappointed by the limited usage it has got. Just 16 models to date, which is less than 1 a month. It doesn't help that JC Wings has been releasing its own SPs as spoilers for NG versions, but they are so inferior that surely few discerning collectors are acquiring them. To try and spur NG on here is a list of the majority of SPs that remain to be made on the best mould out there.
It was 2019 that the NG and Lockness Tristar moulds debuted and you'd have thought that would mean an avalanche of L-1011s. Sadly the Lockness mould is rather poor and NG have had electroplating issues and a change of focus. The result are a bunch of L-1011s I won't touch and a much smaller set of excellent NG releases than I'd hope for. So here's a kick up the bottom to highlight how much there is left for NG to make.
The IL-18 was a contemporary of the Britannia, Vanguard and Electra as one of the few big turboprops to see the light in the period when pure jets were beginning to take hold. In 400 scale the type has received very limited attention so there remains a decent number of possibilities for the type. Read on for a look at what is left to be made.
Usage of the Panda Models 737-300 remains rather disappointing as it has only recently been used for a handful of models and most of those have been Asian retailer exclusives. What have been ignored are the large number of European and American 737-300s available to be made. Back in April 2020 I did a wishlist for the Europeans and now I turn to the States.
Despite selling 389 units the 737-500 has not had an impressive run out in 400 scale where only just over 30 models have been made. Needless to say there is plenty of scope for new releases as despite its small size the series 500 acquired an impressive longevity in service on the seconds market, providing a plentiful range of possible liveries.
The Caravelle is back in 400 scale with Aeroclassics dusting off their mould for a new run of French built twinjets. The first month brought Iberia, Catair and Swissair but there's plenty more to be done even if just looking at the marks that the Aeroclassics mould can be used for. Here's a fairly comprehensive listing taking you from Europe to SE Asia, South America and beyond!
It isn't often I get to do a wishlist for an aircraft that had only ten units built - perhaps there's hope for a Dassault Mercure yet! Anyway the short version of the Tu-204 the Tu-204-300 (or Tu-234) has only worn a few liveries and here's a comprehensive look at all of them - I think.
The Tupolev Tu-204 was robbed of a Tu-154 style production run by the collapse of the Soviet Union, which is a real shame as it appears to be a decent aircraft broadly in line with Western contemporaries at the dawn of the 90s. In the end although the aircraft has had a 30-year production run only around 90 aircraft were made. Even so, the type has appeared in a surprising number of liveries which we'll hopefully be seeing on NG Models releases soon.
With NG Models and Panda now making new 737-700 moulds it opens up a substantial space for replacement and new releases for the type. Traditionally I'm a classics collector but there are a few geographic regions where my tastes stray closer to the modern so there are more than a few 73Gs that I would acquire - usually for operators from the late 90s and early 2000s. Seeing as I broke the news of a 73G coming I don't think it is unreasonable for a personal wishlist to get a look from NG!
A Tu-134 had been one of the holy grail missing moulds in 400 scale and now thanks to Panda Models it has arrived. Panda don't seem to know what to do with it though and in about a year have only produced 3 models using it, even though they have both major variants of the mould available. I know some of the partners of Panda are interested in making some 134s and I hope Panda are going to ramp up production too. Here's what they should be making.
Soviet era types have not been well represented in 400 scale recent years despite appearance of a Tu-104 and now a Tu-134. The re-emergence of the Tu-154 is very welcome, even if it is not a 100% modern mould. The 154 got far and way the most diverse usage of all Russian types and that means there are still plenty of core operators to be made.
The local service airlines had their routes in a postwar need for service to smaller communities and feeder routes into the the trunk services of the majors. Initially called simply 'Feeder Airlines' in July 1944 by the CAB they became known as 'Local Service' airlines when the survivors were certificated permanently in 1955. These airlines grew into majors over time and have had a decent representation in 400 scale, however there are significant gaps still to be filled.