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Fiat CR.42 Falco

 

Italeri

 

S u m m a r y

Item No. 2640
Contents and Media: about 75 parts in injected grey styrene; 1 clear part; markings for three aircrafts.
Scale 1/48
Price: U.S. Retail Price: US$45.00*
Review Type: FirstLook
Advantages: Interesting and long-awaited subject, cleanly molded, easy assembly breakdown; dimensionally accurate, good level of detail; useful options
Disadvantages: Somewhat overemphasised fabric texture; "D" shaped moulding on windscreen; inaccurate wheels
Recommendation: Recommended

 

Reviewed by Scotty Battistoni


Italeri's 1/48 scale Fiat CR.42 will be available online from Squadron.com

 

FirstLook

 

Well, the 1/48 scale Italeri CR.42 Falco kit has finally hit the market.

I wonít bore you with repetitive historical data. Instead I will be going straight to the kit review.

So what do you get in the new Italeri C.R. 42 kit? The kit comes with 82 cleanly molded light gray styrene parts and one clear windscreen. Some of the 82 gray parts are not for use on this particular kit version -  more about this later.

Letís break it down for you:


Cockpit

12 gray styrene parts and 4 optional decals make up the kit cockpit. Italeri supplies the modeler with 3 instrument cluster decals and a decal representing a generic but inaccurate seat belt harness. The cockpit will build up into a decent representation of the cockpit right out of the box.



Engine, Prop, and Cowling

Italeri supplies the modeler with 17 pieces (some are alternates) to assemble that make up the power plant section of the plane. The alternate pieces are regular vs. hedgehog style exhausts. Larger blunt spinner vs. smaller pointed spinner. The Italeri kit engine is a real beauty and will build up into a very nice representation of the Fiat A74 RC38 engine. Another nice touch is Italeri molded the cowl flaps in the open position.



Fuselage

Not much to mention here other than that the fuselage is comprised of 3 parts with finely recessed panel lines. Two things to take notice are that Italeri has captured the subtle but correct semi rectangular cross section on the fuselage. They have also correctly represented the small intakes in the leading edges of the lower wing roots.

 

 

On a sour note, the fuselage fabric ribbing effect is slightly overdone; however a little Mr. Surfacer and some gentle sanding will soften this effect.



Wings

Italeri appears to have softened the wings ribs a bit on their production parts vs. the original test shots. However, they still stand just a little too proud of the wing surface. Once again some gentle sanding is all that it will take to soften and blend these in.

 

 

All of the wing struts are cleanly molded, but have sink marks in the fairings that are on the struts. One thing Italeri did capture correctly again is in the horizontal stabilizers / elevators. The elevators have the correct zig zag hinge line. If you look at the outer edge of the elevator where the hinge line ends and the elevator profile moves forward of the hinge line, the elevators break line angles outwards on about the last 4 inches on the real airplane. Have I confused you yet? The main point is the Italeri stabs have this subtle but correct shape.



Landing gear and miscellaneous

Italeri gives you both fully faired wheel fairings, or half faired wheel fairings.

One nice touch is that Italeri captured the anti slip ribs on top that pilots and crew use to climb on the plane. However, on a bad note the wheels, (not the tires) are not faithfully represented and donít correctly capture what the wheel looks like.

You also get separately molded gun barrels, aileron linkages, pitot tubes, and wing pylons/bomb racks



Windscreen

Italeri did something really strange on the windscreen. They molded in a ďDĒ shaped recess on the inside of the front pane of glass.

 

 

I donít know if it is there to clear their gun sight, or if it is there to represent the glass on the gun sight. Either way, I wish they would not have done this because it detracts from the model.



Decals

Beside the aforementioned cockpit decals, Italeri gives you marking options for 4 different Luftwaffe night fighting aircraft from either the 1 or 2 / Nactschlachtgruppe 9 that fought in Italy. However, given the optional but unused regular exhaust and fully faired wheel pants, you could use aftermarket decals and model other C.R. 42ís.



 

Conclusion

 

Italeri must be commended for tackling a 1/48 Italian WWII subject, and I hope they will look into maybe doing other subjects such as a C.R. 32. The kit is cleanly molded and its ease of assembly will be a plus to some modelers. Italeri must also be commended for capturing some of the subtle details that define the Falcoís elegant shape.

But, on the downside, some modelers will not be able to overlook the slightly overdone ribbing effect thatís found on the wings and fuselage. I compared the kit parts with the Ali Dí Italia drawings in their CR 42 book and most parts that I could lay on the drawings matched up almost perfectly.

On a side note, you the modeler are probably asking which kit to buy, The Classic Airframes kit or the Italeri kit?

Well, I am going to have to let you decide which kit is the better one for you. However, I will say this - the ultimate CR.42 Falco would be made by combining both kits, but that would be an expensive venture, wouldnít it?

Recommended

* Suggested retail price subject to change without notice

Thanks to TESTOR CORPORATION for the review sample


Review Copyright © 2005 by Scotty Battistoni
This Page Created on 12 May, 2005
Last updated 12 May, 2005

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