Azur/Frrom 1/72 SM.79 JRS B1

KIT #: FR005
PRICE: $47.65 from (5.00 MSRP
DECALS: Three options
REVIEWER: Scott Van Aken
NOTES: Includes resin parts


In May 1937, Romania ordered 24 Savoia-Marchetti SM.79B bombers powered by two Romanian-built IAR K14 engines. This variant was designated SM-79B and equipped the 1st Bomber Group (71st and 72nd Bomber Squadron).

Second batch of aircraft were upgraded by replacing the IAR K14 engines with 1200 hp water cooled Junkers Jumo 211Da engines increasing the maximum speed from 350 km/h to 405 km/h. Eight of these new airplanes were ordered in Italy. They were designated JIS-79B (Jumo Italian S-79B). But they didn't arrive until August 1941. An additional 36 aircraft were license built in IAR factory in Brasov under designation IAR 79 JR (Jumo Romān).

In the autumn of 1942 another order of 36 bombers was issued to the IAR factory. They were upgraded by replacing the Junkers Jumo 211Da engine with new Junkers Jumo 211F,a 1400 HP engine

Initial in 1938 S-79Bs equipped the 1st Bomber Group (71st and 72nd Bomber Squadron). In July 1941, one of the 2nd Bomber Group's squadrons, the 75th Bomber Squadron, was re-equipped with new JRS-79B, These went on to fight in the battle of Odessa. In 1942 newer JIS-79Bs were assigned to the 71st Squadron. The 72nd Squadron was re-equipped with JRS-79B. The remaining older S-79Bs were transferred to flying schools. In 1944 the 2nd Bomber Group (82nd and 83rd Squadron) was re-equipped with IAR JRS-79B1. In October 1944 the 1st Bomber Group was reorganized (72nd and 82nd Squadron) and sent to the front . This unit fought on until the end of the war in May 1945.


Typical of MPM molded kits, this one is very nicely done with fine engraved detailing. Resin is included, but kept to a minimum for a radio panel, two oil coolers and an engine bulge. The detailing on the inside of the fuselage halves is quite good and includes framing as well as some other equipment such as oxygen bottles. There are also some ejector marks that the builder may want to remove prior to building and painting. There are some parts with thick mold seams and the one-piece rudder has a sink area on it.

Both of the stabilizers are single molds as are the prop blades, which is nice for those of us who do not like individual prop blades. The wheel wells are nicely done as are the main gear. Main wheels are two piece molds. There is a rather large clear sprue for all of the windows that fit in the fuselage as well as the long greenhouse canopy and the entire clear nose section. Jumo engines are on a separate sprue which leaves for the possibility of having other engine versions of this kit being done. This is further a possibility as there are two different clear nose sections, one of which is not used. The cockpit it fairly well equipped for a 1/72 kit, though those with the skills will want to add more detailing.

Instructions are very well done with clear construction steps and a rigging diagram for the radio antenna and horizontal stabs. Color references are with Gunze paints. While there are markings options for three aircraft, the sheet includes additional serial numbers allowing several other options if one has a photo. Two of the aircraft are marked as shown on the box art with the 'post-Axis' roundels and white wing tips. The other is a wartime scheme of green and brown for the upper surfaces and the cross markings. The AviPrint decals are superbly done and are quite thin.


An aircraft that is a bit different from the norm and one that does not seem to be particularly complex in terms of being built. Those who have built a short run kit should have no problems with this one at all.


You can find this and many other neat kits at GreatModels

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