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Turbofan

1/144 F-RSIN Plastic British Airways HS121 Trident 3B

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There was a time, not so long ago, when nearly every airport in Europe was visited by BA's Tridents. They were such a common sight that they weren't in the least bit interesting anymore to a young teenage planespotter at Heathrow. How I'd love to see one flying again nowadays! I remember having a look round one in the BA maintenance base at Heathrow when my Dad used to smuggle us through the gates in the back of the Dunlop van when we went to work with him at the weekends and during school holidays. My main memory was of the rows of seats with a table between so that one row was facing backwards. My Dad always complained about 'those bloody noisy things' and they were noisy too!!

 

All we can do now is make models of them. The Airfix Trident 1C was all that was available for many years and although generally good shapewise there are some areas which were not good. I've never been happy with the nose, tail, lack of wbf or anhedral on the inner section of the wing, etc. Plus of course it was a Trident 1 so if you wanted a 3B there was quite a conversion job to be done.

Then along came the F-RSIN injection moulded 3B a few years ago available in BA, BEA and CAAC liveries. I bought two and started one straight away and even got as far as painting the tail in BEA blue/green. I don't know why but it's been sat on the shelf of doom ever since, I think it might have been because one of the wings was a little warped and I just couldn't seem to be able to fix it. Anyway, recently there have been a couple of excellent Tridents here on RFI which encouraged me to get mine finished. I decided to change the livery to BA as I'm trying to model the whole of the Negus fleet. The warped wing was eventually sanded straight enough and I was able to complete it.

One area of the F-RSIN kit I am not too keen on is the engines. I feel they are too skinny looking so I have replaced them with Resin ones from the Authentic Airliners BAC 1-11 which are just the right size, both types sharing the same engines I believe. There was a little fiddling with the pylons as they have a slightly different trailing edge also the exhausts are different so I used copies from the Amodel Comet 4 which fitted pretty nicely and looked way better than the kit supplied ones.

Decals are a mix of 26, F-RSIN and some from the spares box. Windows are from the generic Boeing sheet from AA and the windscreen decals were very kindly supplied by Martijn (Malair). I have weathered it, as in later service BA's Tridents got pretty grubby, however most of my weathering has disappeared on the photos. Better under weathered than over weathered I think.

Anyway, I've waffled on enough so time for some pics. There's lots of them too so apologies, as usual I couldn't decide which were best so you've got them all!

 

Off on another Shuttle flight to Manchester or Glasgow no doubt!

 

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Thanks for looking, hope you like it, any comments or criticisms gladly welcome!

 

Cheers,

Ian

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Simply gorgeous Ian...

 

...those window decals and subtle weathering really bring it to life - well done !

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Nice little back story and a stunning model. 

The overall sheen of the gloss finish is spot on and the metalwork on the engine cowlings look really nice.

I remember the yellow and grey Tridents of Northeast Airlines that flew in and out of Newcastle airport in the late 70's.

Your Dad was right though, they were bl@@dy noisy!

Thanks for sharing it with us.

 

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Very well done Turbofan. That is by far the best build of the FRsin kit that I've seen. Thanks for pointing out the engine issue and for a resolution of it. I have 3 Airfix Tridents on the bench at the moment (to be 2 x 1Cs and a 2) in various states of rebuild, including fin chord lengthening, wing reshaping, wing/fuselage fairing additions, etc etc and I think I might have to have one of these 3Bs to go with them.

 

Chris

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Wonderful as always Ian.  Having built the Trident myself I reckon it's by far the best F-RSIN plastic kit and you've turned it into a real masterpiece. :clap2:

 

As a matter of interest were the AA engines spares or does Kurt sell them separately? 

 

Dave G

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Yep, IIRC the nose-gear retracted sideways into the fuse. The other oddball dangly bits are not quite as obvious on these super photos, but the main-gear had four wheels each, all on one axle, in pairs, either side of the leg. The whole lot rotated 90 degrees before retracting sideways into the belly so the tyre stack was fore/aft when stowed. I won't even mention the '3&1/2' engine setup!

 

This is an absolutely gorgeous rendition of this Heath Robinson beastie! Love it!

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That is lovely. I can vouch from personal experience how noisy Tridents were. Their exhausts exhibited a crackle which I was told was due to the exhaust gases exiting at transonic and supersonic speed - creating little supersonic bangs.

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Thanks for the comments everyone!

2 hours ago, CT Modeller said:

Very well done Turbofan. That is by far the best build of the FRsin kit that I've seen. Thanks for pointing out the engine issue and for a resolution of it. I have 3 Airfix Tridents on the bench at the moment (to be 2 x 1Cs and a 2) in various states of rebuild, including fin chord lengthening, wing reshaping, wing/fuselage fairing additions, etc etc and I think I might have to have one of these 3Bs to go with them.

 

Chris

Chris, I also have a few Airfix Tridents in various stages of construction/conversion but am seriously contemplating whether it's possible to backdate/reverse engineer the F-RSIN 3B to a 1 or 2. Don't know which would be easier. I don't think I need another 3B so maybe I will try to convert my other kit to a 2E.

1 hour ago, Eric Mc said:

That is lovely. I can vouch from personal experience how noisy Tridents were. Their exhausts exhibited a crackle which I was told was due to the exhaust gases exiting at transonic and supersonic speed - creating little supersonic bangs.

Love it Eric! Didn't know about the supersonic exhaust gases, I'd forgotten about the crackle. People who complain about aircraft noise nowadays haven't a clue. Tridents, 1-11s, DC-8s, DC-9s, Caravelles, 707s, 727s, VC10s not to mention Concorde!

13 minutes ago, noelbarnes said:

Wow! That looks real. I love all the detail behind the windows....outstanding.

Noel, I've become a big user of AA windows, they do add so much more realism!

 

Cheers,

Ian

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A beautiful looking model of a very attractive aircraft in my view.  Such a shame that dithering by the government and the customer doomed it to a small production run.  I think you have the weathering spot on.  One of my earliest aviation memories was been driven to what must have been Gatwick Airport in the very early '70s and seeing what seemed an endless row of Tridents from the motorway.  They were adorned with the BEA Speedjack scheme which is my personal favourite for the type.   For all I know we might have flown somewhere on one of them but I was too young to remember. 

 

BTW, what's BEA blue/green?

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16 minutes ago, Meatbox8 said:

BTW, what's BEA blue/green?

Hi Meatbox8,

Thanks for your compliments.

I referred to the BEA tail colour as blue/green as it did look greenish in certain light conditions or after a few years of weathering. 

Cheers,

Ian

Edited by Turbofan

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Thats a beautiful trident you have done there and yes they were noisy but wasnt it great to hear, miss those sounds now, wonderful times.                                                                                                                                                                                        Cheers Michael.

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I can vouch for the "green effect" that you could get from the BEA blue. You could see it when the sun caused a highlight on part of the blue or when the aircraft was turning during taxying. It was a kind of pearlescent effect.

 

Meatbox8, I doubt that you saw a line up of Tridents at Gatwick. In fact, Tridents were fairly rare visitors to Gatwick.  Heathrow Terminal 1 was the lair of the Trident and there was always a long lineup of Tridents parked nose in to the gates.

 

 

 

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I can only echo the the others. Very nice job of an iconic airliner.

 

As for the noise of the original. Well I lived ten miles from the airport, a Trident would drown out a conversation in the garden as it passed over. That and it's contemporary the BAC-111.

Ah nostalgia!

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Beautiful job Ian, having built one I know its not the easiest of kits. I think you have the weathering just right, nice and subtle but visible if you look.

My junior school used to be under the flightpath to Heathrow, we aviation kids used to gather at breaktimes and watch what was coming over. With sneering disdain the call 'Trident' was often heard. We really did not like seeing so many of them, one after the other! And I well remember the lines of Trident tails visible from the central roads at Heathrow. That and the smell of fuel that was ever present at Heathrow in the 60's & 70's.

 

Does anyone recall  the Trident's nicknames ? Most commonly they were the 'Gripper' (as in Ground Gripper), or alternatively the T3 was also the 'Quadrant' (due to it having 4 engines).

 

Ah, you've stirred some good memories there Ian!

 

Cheers

 

John

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I'm not a big airliner fan but I did build the Airfix Trident many moons ago.

 

I have to say that is one very impressive build, top marks

 

ScottC

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I love it.

The people in the windows really does set it off.

What are the reasons for an offset nose wheel?

I have only built one F-RSIN kit; a Brittannia and it fought me all the way but with a lot of grit and determination I finished it.

 

Gary

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Thanks once again for the positive comments!

I'll have to agree with you Eric, very rare to see a Trident at Gatwick but Heathrow, well that's a different story, I wonder if we'll ever get nostalgic for A320s!?

John, I remember they were called 'gripper' because they took so long to get airborne!

Gary, the reason for the offset nose gear was so it could retract sideways into the fuselage. This meant a longer cargo hold and a larger electrical bay under the flightdeck.

Cheers,

Ian

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Absolutely super!! I have a 1/72 Vacuform kit in the stash that I'd like to build as either a BA or BEA bird, if only I could find the decals :cry:

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8 hours ago, Turbofan said:

Tridents, 1-11s, DC-8s, DC-9s, Caravelles, 707s, 727s, VC10s not to mention Concorde!

 

And didn't they all make marvellous music...?! And that's another marvellous model Ian, stunning little Trident!

 

Keith

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20 hours ago, Turbofan said:

they weren't in the least bit interesting

Spot on Turbo..apart from PIA, Iraqi,Ceylon ,CAAC and Kuwait's Tridents

Done a great job on it! Those Window decs always look good.

I had a couple of mates working in the Dunlop place on the South East part of the perimeter road near Hatton X/ BEA/BA hangars/Barclays Bank in the 90s.

 

Great job, thanks for showing it!

Edited by bzn20

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