This model is of the 2012 787-8 delivered to Qatar on December 12th of that year, she was line number 62. I’d held off getting a Qatar 787-8, as others were on the horizon and consuming my budget. Qatar now has a substantial presence at RLSI – a 777F, 773, A380 and an A320 and is the second largest OneWorld member at the airport after BA (though they have 23 aircraft).
I was genuinely excited taking this out of the box, it’s the penultimate of the great Witty-Apollo models I’ll be able to get new, there’s just one more to open on my desk now and that’s it, no more. The box is very basic, though whereas the Air Canada was Apollo boxed, this is Witty and is strangely enough, custard yellow – I mean it, what were they thinking? The Qatar is however printed correctly onto the box. There’s just a white line drawing of the 787 on the back – however it says it’s a 787-800!
This was supplied by http://www.AviationDelight.ca and while it takes 11 days to get here from Toronto the shipping is both reliable and cheap and by coming in through syndicated delivery systems via Belgium avoids the nosey HMRC in the UK (Belgian customs clear it first and once in the EU it doesn’t clear again) and the tax issue you face from Hong Kong.
So the box is open…and it just sings quality, you can feel it, you can see it and it’s everything that made Witty so great….
1) Main Fuselage
The perfect mould, the fastidiously wonderful paint and quality graphics, it simply is superb, it makes me very sad to think we may never see anything of this quality again, it’s truly awesome. It may lack the fancy aerials – with all the glue and holes and paint failures they bring, but that detracts from it not one iota. It is simply perfect. It pre-dates Qatar’s entry into OneWorld so there is no badging. I would love to know how Witty did it, how did they make everything so spot on and so accurate and so painstakingly good? More to the point how do others fail to meet these standards?
The General Electric GEnx-1B64 detail is outstanding, the see-through HBE fans are superb, a beautiful piece of detail, exceptionally good and the paint is perfect. The exhaust cone detail is of special note and the anti-noise serration spot on. The colours and paint are wonderful, they are perfectly mounted on correctly shaped pylons.
3) Landing Gear
Painted metal with detailed struts and hydraulics, fully rolling wheels but the bogies sadly don’t tilt. Beautiful tyres and wheels, everything is to scale and quite superb. No messy glue or stupid plastic garbage here.
4) Tail fin and stabilisers
They look so good and are so perfectly straight, flawlessly mounted, just as you would hope for, outstanding. The Ibex on the tail is perfect as are the horizontal stabilisers.
5) Wings and underbody.
Witty/Apollo used the push in wings which are painted white top and bottom, spot on and problem free. There is very little underbody detail however except for the large Qatar logo, just a Gemini fitting stand hole and a Witty logo. It should also be said the hole is neat and avoids corrupting the Qatar logo. Just another example of the thought and quality that went into this model, and all others from this brand.
Perfect. The grey, white, burgundy all spot on.
7) Overall score – we start at 10.
And we stay there. The model is exquisite, it is why you pay good money for such things, when you open the box and you see such a wonderful model, you feel that delight, that realisation that your hard earned cash has provided something worthy for you to enjoy. Simply brilliant. Compare this amazing model to even the best of the Gemini’s – say the 787-9 in United livery, and that isn’t a patch on this. Witty managed a level of refinement and attention to detail that hasn’t been seen before and may never be seen again. Seriously, grab what you can of theirs while it’s out there, in the years to come these will be seen as the Holy Grail of 1:400 collectors. Those of you hooked on the fallacy of Gemini’s now past supremacy should buy just one of these models and use it as a reference point of what is good against what is mediocre. I doubt you will ever see better again.