Herpa Wings is one of the world’s most popular diecast manufacturers and has earned the title by producing models of the highest quality. Founded in 1992, Herpa Wings focuses on the production of 1:500 scale diecast aircraft, but also offers products and accessories in 1:72, 1:125, 1:200, 1:400 and 1:1000 scales. Our first 1:500 scale review takes a look at Herpa Wings 1:500 scale B747-400 rendition of KLM Royal Dutch Airlines “Vancouver” aircraft.
PH-BVA, also known as “Vancouver” was delivered to KLM in 1999 and was the 1,225th Boeing 747-400 produced by Boeing. The aircraft has spent its entire 17 year life with the airline and is an integral part of KLM’s long haul market. The aircraft has a capacity of 408 passengers and offers KLM’s New World Business Class lie flat seats, in addition to the Economy Comfort Zone and Economy Class products.
In this review I evaluate the aircraft’s mould, paint and livery as well as quality control. Each section has a maximum score of 10 points, meaning the highest attainable score for the model will be 30 points.
Herpa Wings has done a nice job with its mould of the KLM 747-400. The wings attach snugly to the fuselage with no apparent gaps and the engine nacelles fit nicely onto the wing. In addition, the elevator and tail section are secured well on the fuselage. Furthermore, the model is robust and durable and has a wingspan of just over 5 inches. The fuselage length also measures just over 5 inches. The model also features rollable landing gear wheels. However, thing that is immediately noticeable with this model is that it lacks communication antennas. I can imagine this might be a rather challenging task for 1:500 scale model due to its size, so I won’t be too harsh when it come to the grading. I supposed the antennas would be rather small anyhow. Perhaps Herpa could have added markings on the top and bottom of fuselage to portray communications antennas.
Paint and Livery
Herpa Wings has done a decent job with the model’s paint and livery. The signature KLM crown logo, introduced by KLM in 1964, is featured on the aircraft’s tail, engine nacelles and winglets. The Skyteam allaince logo is also displayed. Once again one may argue, that its harder to simulate detail on smaller scale models. I would agree with that to some extent, but KLM has included a few details on this model. Although entry/exit doors are accurately depicted, the aircraft lacks an sort of overwing emergency exit or escape markings. The cargo door markings are also displayed on the model. Herpa Wings has even made an effort to replicate the windshield wipers on the forward nose section of the aircraft and the Dutch flag is pictured on the rear fuselage. One minor flaw in regards to the paint can be found on the vertical stabilizer as it was a bit worn.
Overall Herpa Wings has done a nice job with the production of this model. PH-BFV arrived intact, and in one piece from the manufacturer which is always a good thing. The wheels, although small are of good quality. Other than the minor issue with the paint on the right horizontal stabilizer the model is of high quality.
I don’t see any reason not to recommend this model to 1:500 scale collectors. It’s a great classic model to add to your collection!
Final Score 25/30.