Japan Airlines 777-346ER JA740J “Samurai Blue” JC Wings 2014 Release
JAL is the only major member of the OneWorld Alliance not at RLSI Terminal One West where the alliance plus Virgin Atlantic operate from and it was long overdue. I had the choice of a 772, this 773 or a very bland looking 788. That’s really why there has been no JAL aircraft at RLSI, they’re just a bit dull. OK I know that the colours are representative of the Imperial Flag but even so, it’s not a livery that’s particularly inspiring. This version with its graphics and United Nations tiles seemed like an opportunity to brighten up the bland and take the plunge.
This was not cheap, £34 ($54US) so it had in my opinion, better be worth it.
JC Wings have done some great 773’s including one of my favourites, the Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Cityscape. The fuselage on this one mostly lives up to the standards I’d expect however I have to be frank, the actual main graphic for the Samurai Blue is dot matrix and lacks any real clarity. It’s average at best. The normal tiles and other details are very good, clean and clear. The aerials are fixed in well and the paint is very good, but it isn’t the very best and certainly doesn’t quite have the refinement and quality Phoenix for example have recently employed on their very latest large aircraft models. The underside of the fuselage is bland. The flight deck detail is precise and clean.
The General Electrics look neat and are well painted and detailed, fixed neatly and accurately to the wing pylons. with good colouring on the fans and engine intakes. However they just don’t really sing out as anything special. I’ve seen much worse, and much better.
4) Tail and stabilisers
The whole set is really very well done, no complaints. The auxiliary exhaust is actually particularly good.
5) Wings and underbody
Superb wings on the upper surfaces, though the starboard leading edge silver seems overly thick and less than ideal. Lots of upper detail and some below. However, The cradle is not well seated at the rear, with a noticeable gap. Worse still the colour of the cradle is completely different from the rest of the paint – being almost cream – quite what is going on and why we’ll never know but the only good thing is that you can’t tell from above. It’s not good enough. The stand was also a pain to fit. I just use an ordinary thin armed Gemini stand that until the past few months everything, right the way down to the tiny Saab has fitted. Now this required to almost be forced onto it, a trend that seems to be afflicting all manufacturers at present.
6) Landing gear
I think the nose gear is a bit too tall, – but not by much, it just doesn’t look quite as it should. The boggies tilt – always welcome and the wheels all rotate and have a good finish. Some of the tyres were a little lumpy but in this case not excessively bad. The hydraulics and mechanism details are very good.
7) Out of 10?
The medium quality graphics, poor stand fit, wing paint, the mis-coloured cradle, overall finish and impression are just a bit below par for this kind of price. It’s an OK model, but it’s far from having any wow factor. 7/10.
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