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Boeing 737-130 Lufthansa. Airfix kit modified. - Now Finished.


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Boeing 737-130 Lufthansa. Airfix kit modified.


My first entry will be the 737-130 in its Lufthansa delivery scheme. My understanding is that although delivered like this, the tailfin was repainted in the then new scheme of overall blue, with the yellow Lufthansa 'roundel' before it was put into service.

The fuselage will need shortening, and the engines will require a fair bit of rework. The very early 731's had engine pods developed from the 727 nacelles and were much shorter than the later ones. I'm still looking for some good drawings of them if anyone can help!

I'll also be cutting away the cockpit roof and replacing it with the excellent clear part from a Daco/Skyline 737, as it massively improves the look of the Airfix kit.

Here's where we start;



Nice laser decals from Nick Webb at http://www.classic-airlines.com/

Note the short engine nacelles with the 727 style 'bump' on the rear underside for the thrust reversing mechanism;



Should be fun, and will complete my collection of 737s from the -100 to -900.





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Hi John


What a great choice with the early engines! I’m looking forward to a masterclass with this one.


A while back somebody (I think it was Jessica - what has happened to her?) suggested that 727 engines might be adaptable. I have no idea how feasible that would be and simply pass the idea on for what it’s worth.


I see Danny is now selling the cockpit clear section as a separate item although I’ve still got a few if you need any more.


Dave G



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5 minutes ago, Skodadriver said:

I see Danny is now selling the cockpit clear section as a separate item although I’ve still got a few if you need any more.

Thanks Dave, I noticed that as well and just last week ordered 3 of  the 2 part sets from him, which should be here soon. I'll probably be alright for a few years now!


I have pondered using Airfix 727 nacelles but they seem too much like straight pipes to me, there is a definite underside bulge on the 737 ones. . think I'll stick to Plan A and modify what is in the kit unless I have any other bright ideas!





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Well I've made a start!


The fuselage needs some cutouts doing, which is best done before I start chopping it up to shorten it. Before;






I have cutout the cockpit area ti fit the Daco clear part in. There are raised vertical panel lines that closely match where you need to cut. The horizontal cut needs to ignore the panel lines though. I cut just inside the lines, ans trim bit by bit until a snug fit is obtained.





You can already see that the clear part overhangs slightly at the front, because the Airfix fuselage is a touch too narrow. It is easily dealt with by shimming out later on.



Those wheel bays also need opening up, so I've done so and will knock up some basic wheel bays from plasticard.



Right, now to go and saw up the fuselage to shorten it to a -100!






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Thanks chaps, I've been sawing away this morning. The 'mitre box' is just made from a strip of timber I had in the garage, screwed together. I then made a few vertical cuts with a tenon saw. When I cut the kit I always use the same 'slot' to cut faces that will join. That way if my original tenon saw cuts wren't perfectly square, it doesn't matter because both cuts come from the same slot.



Cuts made, staggered on each side.



Dry fitted;



There will be a slight step on the rear underside join, but it should be easy to blend in.

Now, to join each side up.






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Great start and an interesting conversion - I’d like to do a -100 so will be following along.


I always thought the -100s didn’t last very long in service but years ago now (either 1998 or 2000) I photographed an America West -100 at Phoenix. At the time it didn’t occur to me that it wasn’t a -200 and years later, when I was putting it on Flickr, I looked it up and was amazed to see it was a -100. It must have been about 30 years old by then.

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20 hours ago, Romeo Alpha Yankee said:

I should also ask, where do you get the extra clear part to replace the cockpit part. Does Daco sell them separately?

Yes, they are available on the website at http://dacoproducts.com/ on the 737 kit page. Scroll down until you see them.

I ordered 6 last week and just received them today in a nice sturdy little cardboard box, great service!



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I remember the first Lufthansa -130s in to Heathrow either very late 67 or early 68. Lufty was the launch customer and they arrived in that scheme you showed above. The Blue fin/Yellow disc with Crane logo scheme started either 68 or 69 (can't remember exactly but 69 seems more likely) That Yellow circle had a concentric thin lined circle in same Blue as the Fin.


Hard to believe now but the only 737s at LHR were Lufty's until Aer Lingus turned up with them a bit later, we had swarms of DC-9s though as most of Europe chose them or the Caravelle early on. Luton had Britannia 737s, 4 -204s delivered 68 and 69. Those were the days...More 1-11s than 737s !

Edited by bzn20
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20 hours ago, bzn20 said:

I remember the first Lufthansa -130s in to Heathrow either very late 67 or early 68. Lufty was the launch customer and they arrived in that scheme you showed above. The Blue fin/Yellow disc with Crane logo scheme started either 68 or 69 (can't remember exactly but 69 seems more likely) That Yellow circle had a concentric thin lined circle in same Blue as the Fin.

Hi bzn20, I'd be interested to pin that down as I have a vague memory of seeing the first ones in that scheme, but wonder if my memory is playing tricks (727's definitely wore it). I can't find any photos that show them in service in this scheme. A while ago I read somewhere that only a couple were delivered with it, and both were repainted to the new livery before entering service. I can't remember where I read that, but googling just now brought up this discussion on airlinercafe, which gives the same info.

Does anyone have any links or photos showing this scheme in service?


Anyway, back to the build.

I joined one side of the fuselage up, on a flat surface and let it set. (This was the side with locating sockets in it. It lies flat much better the the other side with locating pins in it!)



When it was dry i did the other side by attaching the nose and tail sections to it with elastic bands. This allowed me to check & fettle the mid section and ensure I was getting it to the same length. The elastic bands were then taken off, along with the nose & tail parts, and the port side joined up. I forgot to take a photo, but hope you understand what I mean!


The 2 fuselage halves were now reinforced with a window strip and some plasticard in the inside of the joints.



Having a clear cockpit meant I needed some interior detail, Sometimes I doubt my own sanity though. When I did this on some previous 737's I kept a 'master' set of plastic templates which I just cut around to make new sets. From left to right - Cockpit floor, instrument panel, seats, console. Nose bay parts, and main gear bay parts.



Assembled (the kit bulkhead needs a cutout for the nose bay);



Some crew would be nice, these N gauge railway figures will do;



Dry fit to test;





The fit of that door isn't too good, and those panel lines will have to come off!



I'm going to need some Milliput!


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24 minutes ago, Viking said:

photos showing this scheme in service?

The new Scheme and 737 starting services is give or take simultaneously ISH ! I'm starting to think I'm confusing the real world with my airliner postcard collection ! The first Blue Fin/Yellow disc scheme I saw was on a 727,that would be very Late in 68 or just after Christmas  because the old North Wind (don't remember the runway No) runway was in it's last days, this 727 was pretty close to our house and low with only 2 miles to the runway, loved those North wind days. Only in use for a few times a year in the jet airliner days, more often with the older Propliners. My school mate told me he'd seen the Arian Afghan 727, he hadn't , it was the new Lufthansa marked 727 but it dates the day to no later than 5th Jan 1969 because that Ariana 727, YA-FAR (only had one at the time) crashed on approach to Gatwick 5/1/69 in the middle of the night. I cycled there in the morning  and saw the aftermath. A few weeks later I got a heap of Lufthansa postcards, maybe this where the confusion starts ! I had 1 or 2 737 postcards in the old scheme and 1 in the new Blue Fin colours with the same of 727s and 707s,that was around March 69. I think I have  a picture of the first 737 service in to Heathrow but can't get at it. I'll have look tomorrow...................... Hopefully !

Sorry about the Ronnie Corbett story style but it helped to nail some kind of timeline .


Anyway, if you're interested details of that 727 crash..


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I like the long Ronnie Corbett style post! (I remember the Ariana 727 crash, a real nasty one on a cold winters night).


On the Lufty 737, I was sure I had seen them in the early scheme, but it looks unlikely now. I must be mixing it up with the 727's. One thing I do remember was that the new 737s bare metal fuselages shone like a mirror, they were so clean and highly polished. They kept them like that for a long time did Lufthansa, they were absolutely spotless. It'd probably look toy like on a model though!

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A little bit of progress here, the crew, Jürgen and Hans, have reported for duty and sat down in the cockpit. Things are a lot tinier than these pictures!






They are now installed in one fuselage half, on top of the scratchbuilt nose wheel bay.


Main wheel bay also fixed in place, and some shims added to the front join area, to widen it a bit for the Daco clear section to fit. I added some weights behind the front bulkhead after taking this picture, and have now glued the 2 halves together.







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On 2/11/2018 at 9:23 PM, Skodadriver said:

Will Helga and Birgit be reporting for duty as cabin crew?

Certainly Dave, but we won't be able to see them as the cabin windows are opaque! ;)


Fuselage is zipped up, filled, and sanded down. The windows were filled with white Milliput and also smoothed off. I'm pretty pleased with the 'cut & shut' joins as they needed hardly any filler. I don't think I've ever got them so neat. (Ok the other side isn't quite as neat, that's why I'm showing this one!)



Oh alright, here's the other side, still probably better than any I've managed to do before.



The shim running forward to the cockpit glazing & around the nose to widen the Airfix parts, in order to blend the Daco part without any overhang at the sides.



Underside showing the open u/c bays. The white is Milliput filler.



Hans & Jürgen can be seen through the cockpit windows. I painted the inside of the clear part with a medium grey, just so that it blends in better when painted on the outside.



Now, the engines. I've decided that the best way to tackle them will be to use the kit ones, as the shape is ok and they have the pylons on them. But just like on the real thing, I will use some 727 hot sections. My good mate Mr Chris 'Stringbag' came up with some Airfix 727 engines he doesn't need (There is a lovely Airfix 727 on his workbench, with Authentic Airliners replacement engines. Come on Chris, get it finished!) This is the plan;


They will be noticeably shorter when done, which is correct for the early engines.


And this is an overall view of where we are now at. I had to cut some of the wing locating tabs away to clear the main undercarriage bay that I put in. The wings & tail have been rescribed & the raised panel lines sanded off. If you are building one of these, I suggest removing the location pips on the outer flap tracks. They make them sit too far back. Just place them so they cover the holes, and snug up to the trailing edge on the top.



On to the engines next.



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Committed the engines to the razor saw now!

I cut the 727 section off at a slight angle to get it to 'run' with the underside curvature of the 727 nacelle.  I'm having to do this by eye and judged that the rear of the locating tab on the 737 pod was  the place to make the cut to remove the rear part. The fit of the 2 sections is not bad, a little milliput will help blend it ll together.



I've been scouring the net for photos of the back end of these engines & the pylon shape. This photo shows very well what I'll need to do. I've already started to reshape both with plasticard & filler, it's fairly crude at the moment, but some serious sanding & scraping is due to be done this weekend.



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