Following the less than satisfactory JC Wings version of the model published a week ago, I ordered a Phoenix version, having been advised it was probably better. I’ve held on to the JCW version before sending it back because you never know with Phoenix quite what you might get.
Lets call that a good decision. In fact let’s call it prophetic; why be modest?
I shan’t go into the history of the livery change and EVA as I did that on the JC Wings review of the same aircraft you can find HERE.
I should also add that this model has been really hard to obtain in the UK and Europe, none were imported to the UK that I can see and even AMS in Amsterdam seem not to have received an allocation.
I have no issues with the mould in general.
The push-in dome at the front above door 2 is an abomination. It doesn’t fit; it has a huge gap and is just a piece of rubbish. It looks like a badly made drawing pin.
The white paint is flat white, there is no attempt at the pearlescent mica-metallic that is the true colour of the aircraft. The quality of the logo is poor, lacking crispness and definition.
The window line is not well printed, looking misaligned with the old fashioned silver frames in places, no print in others. Red ‘detail’ in the doors is messy. The black escape system markings below the doors do not always align, especially on the starboard side rear quarter.
The starboard side has a huge black print mark that looks like a dirty thumb print and had to be removed very carefully with white tac, near the nose.
The orange coach line is poorly printed and fails even the eyeball test. The only good thing about the fuselage is that the livery is at least in the right place, which was the main issue with the JCW version, it wasn’t.
The stand hole was another fail. It was so small I had to use my optical screw driver to widen the hole to get even the thin armed Gemini stand in.
In general the fuselage is a messy, low effort affair and a huge disappointment.
2)Wings and landing gear.
The upper surface of the wings are excellent with good details, below is over-heavy gloss and lacking any detail whatsoever.
The landing gear is silver and the doors are almost complete fails, having clear mould ripples and dents in them, they are little better than the rubbish Phoenix were using mid-year 2015. The silver is way to bright and heavy. The only good thing is that the bogies tilt (the right side far more than the left), and the wheels all rotate, which wasn’t the case on the JCW version. The nose gear was not correctly inserted and the axel on the wheel had to be removed and reset on the wheels to sit the starboard side wheel flat on the ground.
The nacelles are fine, the silver rims and inner nacelles and fan paint are rubbish. They look terrible from the front and the inner nacelles look blistered, the silver paint is lumpy, over large in terms of particle size, and totally lacks refinement. They are, amazingly, worse than on the JCW version. In fact, this entire model is universally worse than the JCW version.
The huge black print mark on the nose starboard side came off eventually with white-tac. The flight deck windows are over silvered, the lack of refinement is easily spotted. The orange coach line to the nose is very rough and it looks poor even to the naked eye.
The tail graphic is iffy to say the least, lacking definition especially on the port side. Neither of the stabilisers fit well and there is glue showing on the edges where the vertical is inserted. Worst of all though is a ridiculous paint mark above the stabiliser on the starboard side. It is simply awful.
The only thing on this model that holds up is the green colours, the dark green is no different to the JCW, which I never had a problem with. The light green is accurate and better than on the JCW. The white is a total fail, flat, lifeless and plain. JCW did a far better job of this.
7)Score and conclusions
There is a pile of detail that’s missing or wrong on this model, it is to be frank such a dogs breakfast that I now understand why it might not have made it to Europe. Quite possibly they realised it was a piece of unmitigated rubbish and decided not to bother.
What is wrong with Phoenix? There is no way that it’s just me that’s getting this crap delivered. I use too many different sources from around the world to ensure a general quality view across the board and I don’t use my name for many, on the off chance it has any effect. Now I’m sure some of you are getting perfect models, but that cannot be all of you. Statistically the chances of it being most of you getting sub-standard ones are very high.
This model is rubbish. Just utter crap. It’s even more depressing when you think that the JCW is better than this, and even that was poor. I’m now wondering what the Air France JonOne 773ER and the Air Tahiti Nui A343 will be like? Please, whatever happens, make them better than this!
Scores: -12 for the white paint fail, -5 for the dome, -6 for the mediocre landing gear doors, -3 for the poor nose gear, -10 for the whopping great mark at the nose, -8 for he huge mark at the starboard stabiliser, -10 for general definition, poor detail and shoddy finish.
48% is an appalling score for such an expensive model. Phoenix should be ashamed of themselves for even thinking this was passable and fit for retail. RETURNED TO RETAILER FOR REFUND.
All that effort and I end up with neither of them.
The most depressing thing of all about this lump of junk is that EVA Air don’t deserve either JCW or Phoenix’s versions of such an important new livery. If this is what we, as collectors and enthusiasts are now to expect, there won’t be much worth collecting in 2016.
This is the third model in less than a month where the choice has been either a really bad one or, one that isn’t quite as bad. It isn’t a question of which is better, they aren’t that good in the first place. It’s choosing which is the least awful! That really is no position to be in and questions not only the ethics of the manufacturers, but all of us – why are we not sending this stuff back every single time and if need be, going without?