A Pair of Whales:
With two A380s released by Gemini this month it makes sense to work from the largest down. There are obviously few choices when it comes to the A380, but I'm largely happy about and excited about the British Airways A380 registered G-XLED.
British Airways A380- G-XLED:
This aircraft was the 4th A380 delivered to BA and it arrived inservice for the first quarter of 2014. The aircraft has been primarily used to serve BA's slots tat San Francisco, Los Angels, and Hong Kong with occasional service to Johannesburg. This is 144th A380 frame constructed and as is the case with many others, it is currently in storage weathering the COVID-19 pandemic.
Emirates A380- A6-EVB:
At this point it seems like Gemini is determined to make every Emirates A380 in every scheme that has ever adorned their planes. This Emirates A380 was one of the frames originally intended for Skymark Airlines. Instead the 162nd A380 ended up in Emirates' arsenal and was recently adorned with this scheme emphasizing global unity and acceptance while also showing its support for the 2020 Expo in Dubai. Despite this being a newer A380, it's a victim of covid, currently stored in Dubai.
North American 787-9s:
The determination Gemini have shown to squeeze every last ounce out of this mould is amazing. It is to their credit that the overall model has been improved here and there to at least be allowable in the year 2020. Satnav domes, antennas, updated gear wheels and more detailed engine have all been added and make the model presentable. But the fact remains it has ugly creases where the chuncky components of the mould come together and the overall shape of the mould particularly in areas like the nose take second place to others like JC or NG. As long as Gemini continues to publish using this mould, I will continue to pick on it.
Aeromexico 787-9- XA-ADH:
The first of two 787-9s that Gemini have realized this month is the Aeromexico -9 registered XA-ADH. This is the 653rd Dreamliner built and it was delivered on January 2018 making the aircraft just over three years old. I will admit, there are some eye catching features to this model, but it's not tops.
United Airlines 787-9- N24976:
By comparison, the second 787-9 this month is even younger than the first. N24976 awarded to United Airlines is the 970th Dreamliner Boeing produced. It was finished in February 2020 in Charleston SC, unlike the aforementioned Aeromexico which was finished in Everett WA. If you're searching for this model, I highly recommend you spend the extra 10-15 dollars to find NG's version registered N29975, the 1/1 was line number 960, and it is more than twice as good.
These days Gemini tends to release around 8-10 1/400s a month and usually, all are predictable or typical with one or two 'risky' models tossed in. This month Gemini took a few more shots than they normally do and one could argue that both of the 737-800s shown here were a bit more risky than say a Delta, or Qantas. The 737-800 mould is one of the best modern moulds Gemini has, and the printing on their first subject looks really good.
TUI 737-800- G-FDZU:
Thomson Airways rebranded in 2017 to TUI, to better reflect its overall affiliation with other TUI brand names and here Gemini presents one of its 31 plus 737s registered G-FDZU. This aircraft is line number 3,562. It was pressed into service in March 2011 to help meet the travel demands of the world's largest charter airline. It seems Gemini has done a great job with the colors and this is a nice follow up to their previously released TUI 787. Everything looks to be in order here.
EL AL 737-900- 4X-EHD:
The last time we saw the Gemini Jets -900 mould it was being used to make an Alaskan -900 in the most modern scheme late in 2020. This time the -900 is back with winglets and sports a full compliment of the Gemini upgrades including antennas, satnav dome, modern gears and my eyes my be deceiving me, but based on this photo, it appears to be the mould using plastic stabilizers. EL AL uses this particular aircraft in a wide variety of markets making it a familiar face across the European continent. This is a nicer jump out of the usual and a rather unexpected model that I'm sure will please a good handful of folks, especially those 'across the pond' with an appetite for Gemini Jets.
Retros of February:
Is the 747-400 considered a retro jet yet? It's interesting to see a retro scheme on what is now an aging type. In this instance, it's not overly fetching. The IL-62M however has collectors scrambling for their copies. Gemini has quietly done a nice job with this mould lately even though once again, Gemini are working within the confines of a older mould they are bringing to life classic aircraft and are one of the fewer manufactures still doing so in 2021.
Interflug IL-62M- DDR-SEN:
Gemini Jets have used their IL-62 mould 14 times since its inception. This most recent offering is the first Interflug model Gemini Jets has produced. This aircraft representing a pre unified Germany is a testament to the influence of the Soviet Union and makes for a great time piece as well as a complement to any soviet focused collection. This is not the IL-62 that overshot the runway at Schonefeld Airfield due south of Berlin in 1989. The fact that this model is already listed as sold out by Gemini Jets speaks to what collectors are interested in these day. Don't sleep on this model!
Cargolux 747-400F- LX-NCL:
This freighter, line number 1376, was originally delivered to Jade Cargo International in 2006. It was built as a freighter and has changed hand twice since this date. Before Joining the Cargolux fleet in February of 2020 it served Airbridge Cargo. Sometimes it just so happens that if there's a problem with the model, there's a problem with the 1/1. To be diplomatic, I'm sure that this will appeal to some collectors, but there is nothing here that catches my attention. A very plain scheme on a very large aircraft leaves a lot of open space. This won't be an aircraft joining my collection.
Everyone who has been in the hobby a while knows the importance of the bulk orders that Gemini Jets receives from Delta. There's little point in contesting that. On the bight side, Gemini shows they attest care to offer something people will want. To this day, Gemini is the only manufacture that regularly will use the 757-300 mould. They have given the 1/400 stretched vision of this aircraft the same treatment as their -200 mould. Although in this case, have the upgrades helped?
Delta 757-300- N586NW:
757 line number 1022 was originally delivered to Northwest Airlines in 2002. It was transferred to Delta as part of the NW/Delta merge in 2008-09. It interestingly retains the same registration number. The model has all of the modern upgrades many top tier moulds have in 2021, however the mould itself is a cradle mould which is a detractor yet it still is the only option for a 757-300 so it will sure to be a quick seller. The most interesting detail of this model that has already generated a good amount of chatter is the rather large radome. (See picture below for comparison). I don't think there's any question that it is far too large and looks more like an ugly wart than a sophisticated piece of pristinely machined detailing. Otherwise things seem to be in order but it will be interesting to see if the 1/400 scale ever gets a more modern mould of the 757-300.
This month is overall an average one for Gemini. There's a fair mix of airlines and aircraft, but few offerings that are distinctly interesting. The most notable is the Interflug IL-62 which as has already been mentioned is now sold out. For the esteemed collector, purchasing models from Gemini Jets requires a good deal of patients. If one can persevere through old many rounds of old moulds, repeated airlines, and a greater than 50% chance of receiving a broken model, you can sometimes find that diamond. I have two of these models on preorder. It will be interesting to see if I'm proven wrong, or proven disappointingly right.
This page will be updated to rank and discuss monthly releases from the 1/400 model aircraft industry as well as other hobby news and info.