Zvezda 1/144 B.737-700/C-40B/C
|REVIEWER:||Scott Van Aken|
The Boeing C-40 Clipper is a military version of the Boeing 737-700C airline transport. It is used by both the United States Navy and the United States Air Force, and has been ordered by the United States Marine Corps. The Navy C-40A variant is named "Clipper", whereas the USAF C-40B/C variants are officially unnamed.
The United States Air Force selected the C-40B, a military version of the 737-700 Boeing Business Jet, to replace the aging fleet of C-137 aircraft for U.S. combatant commanders. The Air Force awarded the medium lift contract in August 2000. The 89th Airlift Wing acquired its first C-40B aircraft in December 2002. Both units are based at Andrews Air Force Base, Maryland. The 15th Airlift Wing, Hickam AFB, Hawaii, acquired its C-40B for U.S. Pacific Command in February 2003. The 86th Airlift Wing, Ramstein AB, Germany, acquired its C-40B for U.S. Air Forces in Europe in December 2004.
The cabin area is equipped with a crew rest area, distinguished visitor compartment with sleep accommodations, two galleys and business class seating with worktables.
The C-40B is designed to be an "office in the sky" for senior military and government leaders. The aircraft features two-way broadband data communications, including secure voice and data communication; elements include internet and network access, telephones, satellites, facsimile and copy machines. The C-40B also has a computer-based passenger data system.
The C-40C is not equipped with the advanced communications capability of the C-40B. Unique to the C-40C is the capability to change its configuration to accommodate from 42 to 111 passengers. The C-40C replaced three C-22s (a militarized Boeing 727) operated by the Air National Guard and National Guard Bureau to airlift personnel. The C-40C was the first military aircraft to be acquired in this as an off-the-shelf aircraft for the Department of Defense. The 201st Airlift Squadron, District of Columbia Air National Guard acquired two C-40C aircraft in October 2002. The Air Force Reserve 932d Airlift Wing, Scott AFB, Illinois acquired three C-40C aircraft in 2007.
I bought this kit as the 932nd's planes are always flying overhead. There is no external difference between the B and C models aside from the serial numbers. For those wanting to do a C-40A, you can do that as the standard wing tips are included on the sprues, just not used. Of course, you can do a civil 737-700 from this kit as well.
Zvezda takes the approach that airliner models must have a bevy of cabin windows in order to make it more difficult to mask the kit. Frankly, I'd much prefer a smooth fuselage side as there are a number of different window arrangements depending on who ordered the plane.
Anyway, the instructions first have you build the wings minus the tips
and to install the nose gear well and windows in the fuselage. Then 10 grams of
weight are required if you have it on its landing gear. there is no cockpit and
the cockpit windows are incorporated with part of the upper fuselage, as is the
norm with modern airliner kits.
Anyway, the instructions first have you build the wings minus the tips and to install the nose gear well and windows in the fuselage. Then 10 grams of weight are required if you have it on its landing gear. there is no cockpit and the cockpit windows are incorporated with part of the upper fuselage, as is the norm with modern airliner kits.
The C-40B/C has winglets and they are included. If you want to do a C-40A, standard wing tips are included. Finding decals will be a problem as I couldn't locate anyone who does them. After installing those, the tail pieces are attached before moving on to the engines. Thankfully, Zvezda molds the intake as a single piece onto which the engine fan is attached. Then the rest of the engine is assembled and the fan section attached.
All of the flap housing guides are separate and need installed along with the very front of the engine cowling and the little vortex generators. Landing gear is nicely done for this scale and you do have the option of doing the model gear up. Zvezda is one of the few companies that includes a display stand. Though the instructions do not show it, you'll need to open the slot in the lower wings during construction if you want to use it. The kit also provides separate 'gear up' gear doors.
Instructions are a single large sheet that is folded and while not up to the standards of other companies, is quite adequate. Color information is provided on the separate painting and markings guide with Zvezda and Tamiya paint references. There are two options; one is a C-40B and the other a C-40C. The C-40B is not identified, but the other option (which is really just a serial number difference), is a C-40C based a few miles from me with the 932nd AW, USAF Reserves. Upper fuselage, winglets, and fin are white with the lower fuselage and engine cowlings in a blue. The wings, tailplanes and engine pylons are in Boeing Grey. Flight surface leading edges are in an unpainted metal. Painting the tail blue section will be a challenge as Zvezda only provides the gold surround. It would have been nice to have had a masking template. Decals are nicely printed and hopefully will work without issues.
As you can guess, I bought this kit because the planes are 'local', and I either
see them or hear them almost every day. The kit is very nicely done and while
I'd rather not have cabin windows, that can be overcome with filler, sanding,
and a Draw Decal window decal set.
As you can guess, I bought this kit because the planes are 'local', and I either see them or hear them almost every day. The kit is very nicely done and while I'd rather not have cabin windows, that can be overcome with filler, sanding, and a Draw Decal window decal set.
Scott Van Aken
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