Herpa A380 - Disappointed - DA.C

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Old 07-20-2011, 07:59 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Herpa A380 - Disappointed

Hello everyone!

I just received my first 'plastic' jet. It's a Herpa A380 and I am disappointed.

This isn't a rant about non-metal models, in fact I would appreciate any plastic model over a metal one, IF it was more detailed.
If you take a look at the model railroading sector for example, todays plastic models are insanely detailed.

Anyway, back to the A380.
I'm easily impressed (was even impressed by the Inflight 737, see here).

The A380 model lacks any antennas and the whole gear assembly looks cheap, because it is. The center wheels of the main gear pop off every time the plane is touched. Furthermore all axles are clipped in from the bottom. The gear is molded in grey plastic and not very detailed.

The APU exhaust is molded close.
Intakes and fan discs are painted overall silver with only the cone being colored black. No yellow warning spiral markings are printed on them.
Compared to the real thing it lacks different color shades (e.g. intake cowling inside).

The livery seems to be made out of decals, as I can easily spot the clear base extending around the printed parts.

Question: Is the red color of the Qantas livery correct? I haven't seen a Qantas A380 in real live - only 747s. They all spot a darker, purer red. The Herpa red slightly drifts into an orange color.

I've already painted the landing gear parts silver, the wheels white, the fan discs and the inside parts of the cowlings a dark blackish silver/gun metal.
I might do the exhausts cone, too.
Right now, I'm pondering about drilling open the rear exhaust of the APU... (big chance of f...ing the model up, if not made correct), or just simulating the opening by painting it.

What are your opinions about the Herpa jet? Am I too discriminating?

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Old 07-20-2011, 08:35 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Herpa A380 - Disappointed

I think that the points you raise appear to be very important to yourself, and thats as it should be. For myself, these 'faults' or shortcomings that you mention, would not be so important to me. I am relatively new to the 1/200 area, having only collected display models of 1/100 or larger for the last 30 yrs or so. I'm still amazed at the detail and quality of these 1/200 models, so I guess I'm not objective enough to comment. Would I be right in supposing, that putting antennae on these models, would make getting the model to you very 'hit and miss', the antenna problem seems to crop up a lot with you 1/200 guys. Would models require more effective and better designed packaging, adding cost to the model, to achieve getting the model to you with all appendages intact? Just and observation, but do you guys not think that, with a few exceptions, we are getting quite good value for our money?

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Old 07-20-2011, 11:14 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Wink Re: Herpa A380 - Disappointed

Originally Posted by EMD F7A View Post
Hello everyone!

I just received my first 'plastic' jet. It's a Herpa A380 and I am disappointed . . .

. . . What are your opinions about the Herpa jet? Am I too discriminating?
Thanks for the mini-review.

Personally, I don't think you are being unreasonably discriminating, given what I think you may have paid for the model. Herpa indeed could have added a few aerials, painted the struts the right colour and even seen to it the hubs were correct. A dosh of paint here and there in the engine areas would have been nice too. For some reason, I was under the misguided notion that Herpa had added a bit more detail to their A380. Obviously I have been misinformed.

Now if we were talking the Hogan version of the same (which is essentially the same mould, yet less expensive, and it dismantles), all I could add is Hogan models often lend themselves beautifully to a bit of modification as everything comes apart -- right down to those clipped in wheels, which when removed, provide easy painting access to the struts. That is one of the reasons I like them.

But were talking of the Herpa version that is 'supposed' to be a bit more advanced. Your observations are not uncommon. The landing gear assemblies do drop out, but the solution is a drop or two of white glue which allows removal for re-boxing (I know Hogan recommends this). As far as decals are concerned, I have no idea why you may be seeing something akin to 'carrier' that decals have. That would concern me if I wasn't considering one of the AF Hogan ones which are definitely tampo printed.

Again, it is a pity that for so much money you have to do so much work. And again, if that was one of the Hogan AF ones, I don't think you would have minded quite so much. I know I wouldn't have.

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Last edited by Upkeep; 07-20-2011 at 11:21 AM. Reason: sp
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Old 07-20-2011, 08:49 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Herpa A380 - Disappointed

It's not on par with die-cast products of other manufacturers, but my, it IS impressive. It really dwarfes a 727.

Finished painting the mentioned details (sans exhaust cones), although they are hard to spot on the picture below.

I'm even thinking about adding the antennas. I've caught myself already looking for some hard and thin piece of plastic or metal.


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Old 07-20-2011, 10:45 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Herpa A380 - Disappointed

Love mine. Couldn't be more pleased. I'm very impressed with the details it does have. The wheels on mine are "perfect".
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