Airfix 1/144 scale Douglas DC-9-30
DC-9 was the first American--made short-haul passenger jetliner and remained
alone in this market segment for a remarkably long time. The DC-9, which
began commercial service in 1965, would be countered by Boeing with its
737 only over two years later (in April 1967). Therefore the main competitor
for Douglas was the British-built BAC One-Eleven which had been already
decided to install the two engines directly on the rear fuselage, an arrangement
which was used for the first time in 1958 on the Sud Caravelle. This construction
offers substantial aerodynamic advantages and improves handling if an
engine should fail.
original DC-9-10 was somewhat small with its original configuration designed
for only 72 to 95 passengers and sales at first were rather disappointing.
When the DC-9-30, stretched by 4,60 meters, completed its first flight
in August 1966 demand picked up substantially. Specific requests for yet
longer versions by SAS and the Swissair lead to further stretches. Altogether
976 copies of the DC-9 in different versions with from 72 to 125 seats
have been delivered. That is a remarkable sales accomplishment.
started out with just the basic but classic Airfix DC-9-30. I wanted to
build it with its engines in full reverse. After reviewing many photographs
I began to build the kit. I knew I would have to modify the flaps, slats
and spoilers on the wings. I first removed
the flaps and spoilers from both of the wing halves. With the help of
some styrene plastic I made the double slated flaps in landing configuration
and replaced the kit spoilers with a scratchbuilt set in the deployed
JTD-8 engines were next to tackle from the kit. What I did was cut the
rear of the cowlings off and made the "buckets" out of curved
shaped styrene. I mounted the new reversers or "buckets" with
very thin gauge strips of round plastic styrene. I also made some rock
protector shields from scratch for the landing gear.
The painting of the kit was your basic Model Master aluminum buffing spray
over an automotive primer base. The
wing and tailplane center sections were sprayed with a Tamiya USN light
gray color. I used some SNJ powder on the leading edges of the wings and
engines. To weather this old workhorse I used a Tamiya Weathering master
kit. The Eastern Airline decals were stolen from an old Airfix/MPC DC-9.