Zvezda 1/144 scale
by John Chung
Zvezda's 1/144 scale Sukhoi Superjet is available online from Squadron
The Sukhoi Superjet (SSJ) is the first modern airliner designed in Russia since the collapse of the Soviet Union. It is a regional airliner with seating capacities between 75-90 passengers, and was designed to compete internationally with offerings from Embraer and Bombardier. Together with the larger Irkut MC-21 airliner which seats 150-212 passengers, these two spearheads the Russian effort to bring about a renaissance to the Russian civil aerospace industry.
The development of the SSJ commenced in 2000 and the first flight took place on 19 May, 2008. The first production aircraft entered service with Armavia airline of Armenia in April 2011. The basic design of the aircraft is of the traditional mid-wing twin engine airliner. It is powered by two Powerjet SaM146 engines; Powerjet being a joint venture between Snecma of France and NPO Saturn of Russia, and the SaM146 engine is itself based on the western CFM56 engine. The SSJ airframe is 98ft 3in long, 91ft 2in in wing span, and 33ft 9 in in height. The aircraft has a maximum takeoff weight of 105,020lbs, a maximum flight altitude of 41,000ft, and a nominal and maximum cruising speed of M0.78 and M0.81, respectively.
This model depicts the fifth prototype built, production serial number 95005 and registered as 97005. It is of the SSJ 100-95 variant which was the first variant to be developed. 97005 first flew on Feb 04, 2010, and flew for 3 years 6 months before being stored after a major accident while conducting flight testing in Keflavik airport in Iceland. The aircraft at the time was conducting crosswind certification flights. At the time of the crash the aircraft was conducting a missed approach, but when the gear was retracted the aircraft failed to regain height and instead crashed onto the runway, significantly damaging the aircraft and writing off both engines.
This is the 1/144 Zvezda model kit released a couple years back. It is molded with finely recessed surface details and the familiar medium grey plastic. Typical of airliner kits, the fuselage was broken down the center line and molded integrally with the vertical stabilizer.
The main wing was molded with bottom half in a single piece and the top separately. The kit also came with the cockpit and cabin windows open and clear inserts provided for both. However the kit does not come with decals for either meaning they'll have to be tediously masked and sprayed if clear windows aren’t desired.
This model is built primarily out of box with minor details added such as the antennas and clear fuselage and wing lights. No major issues were encountered and all parts fitted relatively well with the wing to fuselage joint being notably good. All major panel lines have been redefined for consistency, and some panel line corrections were also made.
The airframe white was painted using Mr. Hobby White 1000 primer, the natural metal was decanted Tamiya TS-17 and Alclad II, and all other colors are Tamiya and Gunze acrylic. The fuselage red and blue bands, the large tail logo, cabin door frames, and the black wing walk stripes are painted. Decals were very kindly custom printed by a local club member for the Sukhoi house prototype scheme.
Clear coat finish was achieved by successive applications of Mr. Hobby GX100 Super Clear with fine sanding in between using 2500-3200 grit micromesh. One final polishing was done using Tamiya polishing compound applied with an old t-shirt.
In all, this was a fun model to build.
It definitely won’t be my last airliner model, for sure.
Model, Images and Text
2013 by John Chung
Page Created 19 December, 2013
19 December, 2013
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