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Bombardier Q400 - 1/144 Eastern Express 'Flybe' decals by Nazca I had wanted to add a Flybe Q400 to my airliner collection for quite a while, as one of those in the subset of 'aircraft I have flown on' I was working in Compiegne north of Paris in 2010-11 and regularly flew from Manchester to Paris CDG on these. I always liked Flybe, the cabin crew were always very pleasant, and the flights always ran on time. It was a shame when they went bust in 2020, although they are now starting up again. I managed to get this kit from the brother of Jeff 'Pinky coffeeboat' who sadly passed away two years ago in April. I never met Jeff but we shared an interest in airliner modelling and often commented on each other builds in this very forum. It came with the markings for the purple scheme, but I really wanted to do the earlier white and pale blue scheme. Fortunately Nazca do a laser printed sheet, which I duly ordered. If you are looking down on us Jeff, I hope you approve of what I did with your kit. I painted up some 'N' gauge railway figures as aircrew, and fitted them in the cockpit. It beats even photo realistic window decals! Thanks for looking, I'll dedicate this thread to the memory of Jeff 'Pinky coffeeboat'. Blue skies matey! Cheers John
Flybe operate the world’s largest fleet of Q400s and their aircraft are a familiar sight at UK airports. I had wanted to add a Q400 to my collection for a while and the discovery that high quality screen printed decals for Flybe’s purple livery are available from RJS Decals gave me the necessary excuse. I’m not a great fan of resin kits but if you want a 1/144 Q400 it’s resin or nothing. I used the Eurolot kit by Welsh Models. There was also a good kit by Nazca although I believe it’s out of production. The Welsh Models airframe consists of only six parts - fuselage, nose cone, fin, wings with integral engines, and tailplane. Apart from having to bore out the nose to take weight (you really need a Dremel or similar tool) the parts assembled quickly and easily with only a little filling required. The propellers are supplied as separate blades and hubs. They were a bit of a fiddle but the blades are stronger than they look and the end result isn’t too bad. I wasn't greatly impressed with the undercarriage and it really needs complete reworking but I was in a hurry to finish the model for the Glasgow show so I used it as it came. I may revisit it at some point. The only outline accuracy issues I picked up were the nose which was slightly too blunt, easily fixed with Milliput, and a minor adjustment to the top of the fin to correct the sit of the tailplane. The instructions provide templates for the fuselage strakes but these are printed the same size as the side drawing which is quite a bit smaller than 1/144 so I had to guesstimate the dimensions from photographs. In hindsight I might have made them a little too big but they’re staying the way they are. Purple is a custom aerosol matched to Pantone 266 and white is Halfords. I’ve got so much purple paint left over I’ll probably end up building a Flybe E195 to use it up. As already mentioned, livery decals are from RJS, excellently printed by BOA. I smartened up the windscreen a little by overlaying sections cut from spare Authentic Airliners decals. I must learn to make my own decals one of these days - Werner Lehmann’s wonderful products have really put me off plain black/grey windscreens and there are still plenty of gaps in the “photo real” ranges, particularly classic propliners. Thanks for looking and as always constructive criticism is welcome. Dave G