1/96 Aurora Boeing 727-121

Gallery Article by Danny Dinh on Feb 25 2011


Air Vietnam Boeing 727-121 

Active from 1951 to 1975, Air Vietnam (Vietnamese: Hŕng Không Việt Nam) was South Vietnam’s first commercial air carrier. Established under Emperor Bảo Đại, the Chief of State of South Vietnam, the airline flew over one million passengers, including during the Vietnam War, before its collapse due to the Fall of Saigon.

As passenger traffic increased with the start of the Vietnam War, Air Vietnam had initially added aircraft such as Cessna 170s, Viscounts, Bristol, DC-3’s, DC-4’s & DC-6’s. It eventually obtained more modern aircraft including Caravelle, Boeing 727 & Boeing 707. 

Boeing 727-121 with serial number “XV-NJB” had worn many different cheat-lines that ranged from green to blue. This particular cheat-line of yellow and orange is its latest prior to the Fall of Saigon.

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I bought this kit for $2 (yes, two buckaroos…) at a local IPMS event many years ago. The kit is probably as old as I am (or older) and comes with the fuselage halves, wings and wheels…. very basic.

This kit sat in my “hanger” for many years before I got to it… Thanks to a very talented dear friend (Mr. ASR) who had kindly sent me the decal that is needed for the tail part and on the fuselage above the windows. The rest was painted with glossy white, insignia red, insignia yellow, grey and silver… and yes, the glossy white part was the hardest to paint. This required many, many coats for the glossy white paint to show.

The brilliant “in-flight” digital art work was created by a very respected modeler / pilot (Mr. PQK).

The last picture is of the real aircraft taken in Hong Kong in 1974.

Last but not least, I would like to dedicate this aircraft to all the Air Vietnam crew.

Danny Dinh

Photos and text © by Danny Dinh