Qantas Freight 767-381FER VH-EFR Gemini Jets GJQFA1040 2011

I’m pleased to say that Qantas have since upgraded their rather tedious livery from pre-2011 to something a lot nicer than this, but this is all there is at the moment, and it was dirt cheap, there are loads of them on eBay. It’s cheapness was pretty much the only reason I bought it. well that and a desire to have an Australian Freighter at RLSI, not that there is anymore freight space. The special storage unit and airport extension are already full!

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Why a plain red tail? Who knows. That’s since been rectified. So has the grey ‘freight’ in the corporate tiles. That’s now red. VH-EFR was the first to be painted into the newer colours.

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The aircraft is a purpose-built freighter, originally supplied to ANA in February 2006. The collapse in cargo markets was devastating enough in Europe and North America, but it was even harsher in China, Japan and SE Asia. ANA withdrew the freighter from use in November 2010 as the freight market dried up. She was stored at Paya Lebar in Singapore for a while, after return to her owners, Wells Fargo Bank Northwest. They sold her to Sojitz Air Leasing who leased her to Express Freighters Australia, a Qantas subsidiary, who operate Qantas Freight.

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Freight load layout for VH-EFR

You might ask how in the middle of a massive air freight downturn Qantas could need freighters? The fact is that the one country almost universally unaffected by the global recession, for a host of unique economic, trade and currency reasons, was Australia.

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While this particular aircraft seems to spend a lot of time flying around Christchurch, Auckland, Sydney and Hong Kong, Qantas Freight is soon starting up services to SFO, and already flies to Anchorage, Shanghai and LAX amongst several others airports in Asia.

1.Fuselage

Standard Gemini 767-300. Bright white for the most part, the basic amount of detail that these aircraft have, especially without windows and doors sealed up as they are on conversions.

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The main issue is the big black Qantas isn’t actually black on the model, it’s a sort of dark grey. I suspect the paint wasn’t strong enough and the white beneath has mellowed it. The manufacturer should have known better. For an aircraft devoid of much detail, to get that wrong is frankly incompetent. The same seems to have happened to the word “Freight”, which is lighter than it should be.

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2. Wings & landing gear

Standard, old world 767 wings, lots of detail, good colours and paint thickness. As a cradle fit mould it’s tight and well seated with no sign of a poor fit; always a bonus.

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Landing gear is all metal, rigid, rubber tyres on wheels and they all rotate. Excellent.

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3. Engines

2x GE CF6-80C2B6F’s seem reasonable enough, with a surprisingly good rim finish using a decent silver paint – again, why is it so hard for Gemini/JCW to do this on every model? This is exceptional in comparison to some of the drivel we’ve seen of late again, and it’s 5 years old. 

4. Nose detail

Standard, basic freighter, plenty of detail but no visible radome.

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5. Tail detail

All the elements are spot on, well fitted, well painted, no issues.

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6. Colours

Other than the fact the key wording is too light, which is a bit daft, it’s fine.

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7. Score and conclusion

What a boring model. In fact I vote it Most Boring Model in my collection! It was out of date almost as soon as they produced it, the main wording is too pale and other than the fact it’s about as basic and simple as you could ask for, and a freighter, it’s pretty dull. Oh well it cost me £10 so it’s not a big deal.

  • Colour issues -10
  • No radome detail -2

88% Even with a good score overall, it’s still unusually dull!

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