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In-Box Review
1144
Airbus A-330
Airbus A-330 LTU
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by: Is a secret [ JESSIE_C ]


Originally published on:
AeroScale

History

The Airbus 330 is a competitor to the Boeing 777 on medium to long range international flights. It was introduced into airline service in 1994, and variants continue to be built. It is offered in 2 fuselage lengths; the original -300, and the shorter -200. In recent years several air forces have purchased freighter/tanker versions of the -200.

First impressions
Crisp and clean. Little to moderate flash, no sink marks. What flash there is may be easily cleaned up except for some of the tiny parts where the challenge is to hold the part while you're cleaning it without it going *spung* off into the lair of the carpet monster. Fine scribed lines that are out of scale for 1/144 but will still look good under a coat of paint. Panel lines match up very nicely.

Fuselage
The fuselage is two halves from nose to tail. The cabin windows are open, with no clear parts provided for them. Either fill them or Krystal clear/Clearfix them; decal film just won't do it. No interior detail is provided, and the small windows would render any interior redundant anyway. The cockpit windows are the old-fashioned Airfix style strip, which makes getting them to fit properly without either breaking or falling into the fuselage something of a challenge. The panel lines are nicely engraved and match up well. The APU exhaust is left open, which means that one may look right through the fuselage. It should be filled with a small blocked off piece of tube to prevent the see-through effect. If the windows are left open, the interior should be painted black to prevent the model from looking toy-like. Revell advises that 15g of nose weight will be required. Rarely for 1/144, there is a cockpit interior provided, although it is moulded in one piece. Very little of it will be visible through the cockpit windows but it does prevent the see-through look. The nose gear well has to be assembled before closing the fuselage. Revell would have you assemble the entire length of the strut, but this leaves it vulnerable to breakage during assembly. Since the strut is made in two halves, I recommend leaving the lower half off until final assembly. The main wheel wells are almost featureless, but since they will be covered by their doors, it doesn't matter. Revell chose to mould the lower portion of the wing-to-fuselage fairing as a separate piece, which causes a few alignment problems. This piece is identical to the A-340 kit, and therefore a blanking plate is needed to close off the centreline wheel well which the A-330 does not have.

Wings
The wings are in two halves with separate tips. The tips are a simple butt joint which is not very strong. They should be drilled and pinned to prevent them from snapping off later on. The flap actuator fairings are in two pieces each, which leaves several seams to fill on each wing. Their locations are clearly marked on the lower wing surface. There is some detail in the wheel wells.

Empennage
The tailplanes are two piece mouldings that fit fairly well but still need glue. Leave them off until final assembly to facilitate decalling.

Engines
The A-330 is powered by GE CF-6, Pratt & Whitney PW 4000 or Rolls Royce Trent engines. The first issue had only the GE engines and the LTU boxing offered both GEs and Pratt & Whitneys, with the GE engines available for the spares box. Trents are available from Bra.Z resin. The kit engines are very nicely done, being made up of two cowl/strut halves, intake fan, turbine fan and exhaust cone.

Landing gear
The landing gear struts and wheels are finely moulded and nicely detailed. They could use some brake lines and whatever else the modeller likes, but will look good without. There is an option for raised gear, but no stand is provided. As with all 1/144 kits, the gear doors are overly thick and may be replaced if the modeller wishes.

Accuracy
I don't compare models to drawings or published measurements. When assembled it looks like an A-330.

Decals and markings
The decal sheet is very complete, with a good variety of stencils. This kit offers an aircraft from LTU. Window decals are not provided. If you don't like the kit decals there are many different choices provided by the aftermarket industry.

Bra.Z models offers 2 different varieties of resin fins for converting this kit to the shorter -200 variant.
SUMMARY
Highs: Delicate parts with a lot of detail for 1/144 scale. Good colour scheme options in every box and a wealth of aftermarket schemes available.
Lows: Delicate parts mean that they can easily be broken or lost. Care must be taken while removing them from the sprues and handling them while building. The moulds are showing their age, with some flash
Verdict: It's an impressive model, huge even in 1/144, but simple enough that all but the most inexperienced builders can handle it.
Percentage Rating
95%
  Scale: 1:144
  Mfg. ID: 04205
  Suggested Retail: OOP
  Related Link: 
  PUBLISHED: Aug 10, 2011
  NATIONALITY: France
NETWORK-WIDE AVERAGE RATINGS
  THIS REVIEWER: 90.12%
  MAKER/PUBLISHER: 83.40%

About Is a secret (Jessie_C)
FROM: BRITISH COLUMBIA, CANADA

Copyright 2019 text by Is a secret [ JESSIE_C ]. All rights reserved.



Comments

Just to clarify one thing, the A330 is a much smaller aircraft than the 777 and they do not really compete in the same market.
AUG 10, 2011 - 12:53 PM
Here are some basic specifications (sourced from Wikipedia) A-330-200 Passenger capacity 253 (3-class) 293 (2-class) 380 (maximum) Dimensions Length: 58.82 m (193 ft 0 in) Wingspan: 60.3 m (197 ft 10 in) Maximum range: 13,430 km (7,250 nmi) A-330-300 Passenger capacity 295 (3-class) 335 (2-class) 440 (maximum) Dimensions Length: 63.69 m (208 ft 11 in) Wingspan: 60.3 m (197 ft 10 in) Maximum range: 10,830 km (5,850 nmi) Boeing 777-200 Passenger capacity 301 (3-class) 400 (2-class) 440 (maximum) Dimensions Length: 209 ft 1 in (63.7 m) Wingspan: 199 ft 11 in (60.9 m) or 212 ft 7 in (64.8 m) for the LR version Maximum range: 5,240 nmi (9,700 km) or 9,380 nmi (17,370 km) for the LR version Boeing 777-300 Passenger capacity 365 (3-class) 451 (2-class) 550 (maximum) Dimensions Length: 242 ft 4 in (73.9 m) Wingspan: 199 ft 11 in (60.9 m) or 212 ft 7 in (64.8 m) for the ER version Maximum range: 6,005 nmi (11,120 km) or 7,930 nmi (14,690 km) for the ER version Note the 777-200 and A-330-300 which were the first production versions respectively. They are very close in size and passenger capacity. The A-330's slightly smaller passenger capacity was made up for by a substantially longer range. At the time they were launched and the airlines made their first orders they were certainly direct competitors. In the almost two decades since their introduction, the 777 has been stretched into a much larger and longer-ranged aircraft where the -330 was not given that Airbus preferred to develop the A-380 instead. The markets have evolved to suit the aircraft in a way they had not when the two were first rolled out and each design has found its niche. The A-330 has pretty much lost out to the 777 in the long range passenger market, but definitely beats it in the military market.
AUG 10, 2011 - 01:40 PM
   

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