I first wrote about the HYJLwings A321s way back in August, see: HYJLwings Announces A321neo and ceos in 1/400
HYJLwings started its production using Panda’s A319 and A320 moulds and was in fact the first customer to provide models with aerials on these moulds (even ahead of Panda themselves). They have since used both the Panda A330 and the JC Wings A380 for models but increasingly HYJLwings output has been of its own moulds, or at least those shared with NG Models.
Depending on who you speak too HYJLwings are either synonymous with NG Models or customers of them. For practical purposes it doesn’t matter and HYJL and NG are sharing the 1:200 scale CRJ and the 1:400 scale 757-200. One mould that HYJLwings appears to have exclusive use of however is the Airbus A321.
The A321 has had something of a chequered past in 1:400 scale mainly because the manufacturers tend to see it as an exact replica of an A320 with a stretched fuselage, which it is not. With double slotted flaps the wings on an A321 are quite different yet often this is ignored. Phoenix have never recognised the difference whilst Aeroclassics did until they created a Sharklet equipped moulding. At this point AC merely attached the A320 wings to their A321 mould. JC Wings and Gemini have got the wings correct however there mould is the worst of the three mentioned.
Interestingly Panda models, which have an A319 and A320, never seem to have developed an A321 themselves. Instead it has been up to HYJLwings to create one seemingly through NG rather than Panda? This had been in the pipeline for much of 2017 and models were announced first in the last quarter of the year. Gradually these have dribbled out into the market but aside from a few sold at Threshold Aviation in Canada (though not advertised through their website) almost none have gotten out into the west.
This is probably because the overwhelming majority of releases have been of Chinese A321s with only a few Airbus house colours versions. In fact it hasn’t been until the announcement of an A321LR House Colours model that the new mould has really gotten any PR.
The other factor in the relative obscurity of the mould is the production numbers. They are small. Even though there have been 35 separate models made many of these are minor livery or engine variant changes often in very small volumes (60 pieces up to 120 pieces).
HYJLwings models are I admit a little pricey. Buying in China they tend to retail for 280 Yuan, which is actually cheaper than Phoenix and Aeroclassics, however when this is converted to USD and you add on the extra payments required for going through a proxy like engtaobao to access the models they are not cheap. Then again you get what you pay for.
All HYJLwings models come with a collectors card, a handling glove, an apron card sheet and a high quality box. The A321s all come with a wooden box with cardboard surrounding outer. Inside there is either a styrofoam inner or a more familiar plastic cradle. The boxes come cling wrapped and the whole package is a high quality product.
HYJLwings doesn’t cut corners with variants either. They have both A321ceos and A321neos plus the ceos can have Sharklets or winglets. In addition all engine options are catered for for both ceos and neos, with the latter having modern see through engines. Most impressively for all combinations the wings are correctly those of an A321 and not those of an A320.
This attention to detail combined with the impressive packaging makes the aircraft highly desirable. I will be undertaking a detailed mould review of one or two HYJLwings A321s at my regular spot for detailed reviews (https://thediecastflier.com/category/1400-scale-reviews/) in the coming weeks.
In part 2 of this series I’ll take a closer look at the models that have been announced and released so far.
I'm Richard Stretton, an aviation enthusiast and major collector of 400 scale model aircraft. This blog discusses ongoing events in the world of 400 scale.
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