Early short run kit with vacuform canopies
Ba-65 was an early 1935 vintage low wing monoplane developed by the Regia
Aeronautica as a multi-purpose attack bomber.
It could carry a variety of weapons, including a 2000 lb. bomb or a
combination of smaller types.
Originally a two seater, later models were single seat types.
Production included export models for
as well as for the Regia Aeronautica.
First committed to combat by Italian units fighting with the Spanish
Nationalists during the
War, it was found wanting in
several respects, and finally wound up being used primarily for reconnaissance
missions. Both two seat and single
seat versions were produced in quantity, and two different
radial engines, the 1000 hp. Fiat A.80 RC 41 and the 900 hp.
Isotta-Fraschini K-14, were used.
Later, a few BA-65 bis variants were produced with a
power turret mounting a 12.7 mm. machine gun.
War II, those Ba-65ís that had survived pre-war service and the Spanish Civil
war were used in the Italian campaigns in
These served in the ground attack role, and continued until they were all
destroyed in combat or in accidents.
They were not particularly successful during the war, serving mainly to
increase the scores of RAF and RAAF fighter pilots in
However, the airplane is an interesting one, having a number of variations and
numerous color schemes, and it certainly should be included in any serious
collection or display of 1/72 scale World War II aircraft models.
one of Azurís very early offerings, and basically two variants are provided,
the single seat model and the type with the hand held machine gun in a
dorsal position. Molded in rather
brittle light blue styrene plastic, the kit has fine recess panel lines and nice
surface detail. There is one sheet
of PE metal parts, mainly for interior parts and one portion of the landing
gear, and a photo-negative instrument panel section is also provided. These are
somewhat visible through the vacuform canopy. The injection molded plastic
detail parts are somewhat crudely done, with some flash, but they can be trimmed
up with no real problems. All of
the parts, wings and tail unit, butt-fit onto the fuselage, but it is easy to
get them attached at the proper angles.
As can be expected in a short run kit,
some filler is required, but this is true with many models, so itís not a
seen one other review on this kit that complains about the engine, and that it
is too small within the cowling, but I assembled mine according to directions
and found the engine to be one of the better features of the kit, although it
might be just slightly too small in diameter.
The major problem I found is the propeller.
Although there is not a lot of reference material available on this
aircraft, and not too many
photos, many show the airplane with counter clockwise rotation, British style,
rather than clockwise rotation, American style.
The kit prop is American style.
The difference is probably that one of the engines most likely had
different rotation, but from the photos and reference material I have available,
I was unable to determine which one it was.
This is a problem that I am always aware of,
since Iíve spent my entire flying life hand propping airplanes, and
rotation is always a big issue. Of
course, some of the published
photos are sometimes printed backwards in reverse, and if no numbers or letters
are visible, it is impossible to tell which way the prop should rotate.
Anyway, I replaced the kit prop, which appeared to be too small anyhow,
using one from a Frog Fokker D.XXI, and it looks right to me.
issue is the bottom windows. The
kit provides a vacuform part for these, which is outlined on the fuselage
section, showing you where to cut the plastic.
One review I read stated that the single seat versions did not have the
belly windows, as they were primarily for the rear seat observer/gunner.
to leave them off, as I did the single seater.
Also, the rear gun position requires some cutting and fitting, although
the new part is provided on the sprue.
cockpit interior is actually pretty good, with some PE side panels, a cockpit
floor, seat, control stick, and instrument panel.
The rear machine gun and mount are a little crude.
The vacuform canopy is clear and well defined, and cockpit detail can be
seen inside after the canopy is in place.
I used superglue to attach it, and merely masked off the clear window
portions, and was pleased with the results.
and color schemes are provided for three aircraft, all 65 K-14ís. First is 94-4,
a tri-color camouflage scheme from the 8th Gruppo, 94th
Squadriglia, in 1938. Also included
is 93-6, another tri-color aircraft from the 8th Gruppo, 93rd
Squadrilgia, 2nd Stormo, Caccia Terrestra, 1938. Last is a Spanish
Civil War version, 16-41, of the Aviazione Legionaria, 65th
1938. I didnít use many of the kit decals because I wanted to do a
ďsand and splotchesĒ Regia Aeronautica camouflage scheme, one I have always
found very attractive. I hand
painted the rudder cross and used the kit decal for the royal emblem.
I did use the wing insignias and the fuselage ďBreda
65 and fascesĒ decal that goes immediately beneath the cockpit windows.
The decals are of good quality and went
on easily. I think the overall effect is
good, and I was quite impressed with the model.
is basically a good little kit of a plane that, even though it was not
particularly successful, certainly deserves its place in aviation history.
I wouldnít recommend it for a beginner, but for any modeler who has a few
years of experience under his belt, it is a good challenge, especially if you
want to tackle the rear seat and belly windows.
Iíve had this kit stored in my cabinet for a number of years, so I donít
know about its current availability, but it is certainly worth getting at least
one, as it really belongs in any serious display of Regia Aeronautica aircraft.
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