McDonnell Douglas has maximized the DC-9 series with eight length versions over the years. Starting with the DC-9-10 at 104 feet to the MD-90 - the longest - 153 feet in overall length. With the addition of the new weight, two International Aero Engines V2500 engines with 28,000 pounds of thrust each were installed. This added length also gave their customers additional revenue with a maximum of 172 seats.
The first delivery was made to launch customer Delta Air Lines in February 1995 with the aircraft entering revenue service in April 1995. Some of the customers flying or have flown the MD-90 include: AMC, American, Air Aruba, Aserca Airlines, JAS, Scandinavian, China Northern, China Eastern, KTHY, Saudi Arabian, UNI, EVA and Reno Air.
Bra.Z. Models of Italy has brought out another wonderful conversion for the 1/144 modeler. Until recently, the MD-90 was only available from Hasegawa in 1/200 scale. This resin kit is made for the Minicraft MD-80 kit and includes four parts with an instruction sheet.
The two V2500 engines come with the pylons mounted on the nacelles. Before cutting off the kit pylons, I would score a fine line along the body right under the bottom the pylon. This will maintain the correct up angle of the engines when you go to mount the new engines. As with all Bra.Z. engines the detail of the hot and cold sections is outstanding. The front fan has something I have not seen even in his parts before - six notches for the mounting bolts on the spinner hub. Also impressive is the interior of the inlet. Kit manufacturers have never spent any time in designing this very noticeable feature well. The intake lip to the fan face is a smooth transition with the three panels scribed in. The hot section has all the interior fins, fan and exhaust cone. The distinctive shape of the V2500 is captured well. The nacelles include fine scribed panel lines and a very thin exhaust ring and tapered pylon.
The MD-90 uses the MD-87 tail with it's distinctive flat top and taller height. The master of the tail has had the rudder removed and sanded to an airfoil shape with rudder hinges and the scuff plates installed. The tail also has a male tab to help align when mounting to the body.
The fuselage is lengthened by the use of a hollow plug. Instead of buying two kits and scrapping the one for about five scale feet of fuselage, Bra.Z. has done the logical step. After the extension was made, a steppeddown mounting ring was added so that the attachment makes a very strong lap joint instead of a weak butt joint. This forethought has made a critical joint quick and easy. As seen in the photo, the joint will require only a minimum of putty. Bra.Z. has you cut the body at a scribed vertical seam so locating the cut line is a snap. Using a fine saw with a miter box guarantees a true 90-degree cut. The plug also has the window raised lines so that all panel lines match the original kit.
The craftsmanship of this Bra.Z. conversion kit is outstanding. The parts match the Boeing drawings in shape and scale. These resin parts will need only slight trimming of the molding flash to be ready to paint. For all you "Nine-O-holics” this is a must buy. Other items from Bra.Z. for the DC-9 fan are tails for the DC-9, MD-80 and MD-87.