Xotic-72 1/72 Savoia-Marchetti SM.84






Three aircraft


Scott Van Aken


Short run with vac canopy and resin bits


Designed as a replacement for the very successful SM.79, it became available at a time when Italy was on the defensive. It seems that the Italian military would have been better served to put that factory space to use building fighters, however the Italians did many very questionable things during the war so you can just add the building of this aircraft to that list.

The plane itself was well designed an an improvement over the older SM.79. However, very few of them actually saw any kind of combat  in their intended torpedo bombing role. Some success was recorded by 98 and 99 Sqd in the defense of Sicily, and the torpedoing of the HMS Nelson,  but for the most part they were used as transports instead of as a bomber. After the armistice, those remaining were used by the Germans, ANR, Slovak and Co-Belligerent air forces.



This kit is yet another well done Czech short run production. As with the Fiat RS. 14, the more difficult part of construction will be with the cockpit clear parts, as they are in a right and left half. The engines are made of resin and there is a small etched fret for some interior bits (not shown), but the rest is normal injected plastic. There are the usual ejection molding stubs on the large parts that will have to be removed, but otherwise there should be no surprises.

The instructions are very well done and consist of several steps using exploded views. It seems as if Xotic 72 has the instructions down quite well and any additional help with the construction is given. You do have to make one or two small pieces from stretched sprue, but this is quite normal. If Xotic 72 instruction sheets have a drawback it is that none of them give any color information, relying on the color box art and profiles. While these are quite nice, I would like to know, for instance, what that additional upper surface grey color is as I've never seen it used before.

There are markings for three aircraft. Two are Italian from 9 and 258 Sq. THe 9Sq plane is in that two tone grey scheme that is so unusual to me. The other is in a 'normal' sand with grey undersides and a heavy mottling of dark green over the sand. The third option is a Slovak version in light grey undersides and a dark green overall upper surface. This plane has a yellow fuselage band and lower wing tips.  Again, the decals are superbly done and should work very well.



Once more, a very nice kit of a most unusual subject. If your penchant for 1/72 aircraft is more away from the norm, then this and others in the series should be most welcome to you. You can get this kit via the link below.

Review kit courtesy of the fine folks at Aviation USK Nebraska. Thank you for your support.

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