During the Cold War the Soviets were often accused of copying Western designs and so it is with the IL-62, which was derided as being a “VC-10ski” copy when it first appeared. History has vindicated the IL-62, which was actually a purely civil design carefully optimised for long-range flights rather than being compromised by conflicting requirements the way BOAC and the RAF forced Vickers to hobble the VC-10. The IL-62 remained in passenger service well into the 21st Century in contrast to the VC-10's withdrawal during the 1908s. The IL-62 was Aeroflot's flagship aircraft until the IL-86 was finally introduced in 1980 and it remained an important part of the long-range fleet for 28 years afterwards. It was the first Soviet airliner to be designed with full height entry doors and navigation lights that met international standards. A few IL-62s remain in service to this day.
First impressions This is a very nice resin kit with 4 different colour schemes. The parts still have some or all of their casting blocks attached which will need to be removed before construction may commence.
Fuselage The fuselage is two hollow halves from nose to tail. There are some remnants of the casting blocks that will need to be cleaned up. This should be done by sanding on a flat surface using lots of water to keep the resin dust down. Resin dust is very toxic and is a known carcinogen, so be sure to wear a respirator while sanding. A dust mask will not be sufficient. Nose weight is required and RusAir note this on the instructions, but it's very difficult to read how much is suggested due to the sheet's small size.
Wings The wings are one piece each. They will need careful cleaning up on the leading edges to remove the remains of the casting blocks. The IL-62's characteristic camber under the dog-tooth leading edge is faithfully rendered. They will likely need to be drilled and pinned due to their weight.
Empennage The tailplanes are a one piece moulding complete with the tailplane bullet fairing. It is a simple butt-joint with the top of the fin.The fin butt joints to the fuselage. They could benefit from drilling and pinning to make them more secure.
Engines The engines and their pylons are one piece mouldings, with separate thrust reversers for the outboard engines. The pylons are a butt joint onto the pylon stubs moulded with the fuselage. They could be drilled and pinned to make the joint more solid. Cleaning up the gap will require needle files and a lot of care not to destroy the finish.
Landing gear The landing gear struts and wheels are finely moulded. The casting blocks will need careful removal on the struts if they are not to be damaged. They could use some brake lines and whatever else the modeller likes, but will look acceptable without. There is no option for raised gear, nor is a stand provided. The characteristic tail support strut is moulded in the semi-retracted position. The strut will have to be replaced with a length of brass rod if the modeller wants to portray it lowered. The gear doors are thinner than comparable injection-moulded parts, and should look acceptable.
Accuracy I don't compare models to drawings or published measurements. When assembled it will look like an IL-62
Decals and markings The decal sheet is very detailed, with markings for 3 different Aeroflot aircraft from different time periods during its operational history, and one from Domodedovo Airlines from after the fall of the Soviet Union. Some stencils are provided, plus a complete set of both light grey and black windows. Cockpit windows are only provided in black. The basic colour scheme is white over light grey with red wingtips for all versions.
Conclusion I purchased this kit through Heino who runs Airliner World.de. He may be reached at airlinerw(at)aol(dot)com. He carries a good line of RusAir and other Russian kits and decals.
Highs: The best IL-62 currently available. Good shape and variety of decal schemes available.Lows: It's a resin kit. It's expensive, definitely obscure and not widely available.Verdict: Very much worth building.