Sheet #

Sky Models 48-021 Macchi C.200 'Saetta'




I think it is all of them!!!

Review By:

Scott Van Aken



One of the first modern monoplane fighters of the Reggia Aeronautica was the Macchi C.200 'Saetta'. By all accounts and purposes, this aircraft should have been a world-beater. However, the Italian aircraft industry was plagued by several problems. The first was that true mass production was never to see fruition. Italians have always considered themselves to be artists first and manufacturers second. This produced a number of superbly designed aircraft that just never reached the numbers to make themselves really effective. Secondly, the aero-engine industry was not able to produce engines with sufficient power. The finest Italian aircraft of the war were those powered by German Daimler-Benz engines. 

A third problem area was the inability to concentrate on one basic aircraft type. Having several planes in the same category only made concerns with supply and repair even that more difficult. With the MC200, there was also the Fiat G.50. This lack of focus was even more apparent later in the war when the Italians had to choose between the Reggianne Re.2005, Fiat G.55 and Macchi C.205. All three were put into production! Finally, and this was a situation faced by a number of powers at the time, the armament of the aircraft was inadequate and harkened to the light calibres of earlier years.

Despite all of that, the Macchi C.200 was widely used in the early years of the war until supplanted by the DB.601 powered MC.202 'Folgore'.

Sky Models is undoubtedly one of the premier decal makers in the world. Their decals are crisp, clean, and I have never seen one off register. They are also generally very comprehensive, offering a multitude of subjects on a single sheet. This one is no different offering a staggering 37 different aircraft! Italian aircraft have had some of the most interesting paint schemes ever done and Sky Models has catered to that diversity with this sheet. There are enough common markings to do two complete aircraft, and that is limited only by the white tail cross and the fasces emblem. There are four different designs of wing insignia as well as some stencil detail and squadron commander flags.

The instruction booklet is ten photocopied pages with, generally, four side views per page. Each profile includes what unit it is for as well as decal placement, paint colors used, and a closeup of the camouflage pattern. Not surprisingly, everything is in Italian, but that is not a drawback. On the last page is a color chart giving cross reference to FS standard, Humbrol, Molak, Tamiya, Gunze and Misterkit colors. The instructions are not up to the standard of say, Aeromaster or Superscale, but are adequate. One addition that could help would be an upper or lower view to show wing decal placement, but that can be obtained by using the kit instructions as a guide.

For those of you wondering what kit to use for this sheet, there are four that may be used. The first are the fine resin kits by Astrokit (the link below will get you more info on these kits). Secondly is the release several years ago by Classic Airframes. There is also a release by Italian Classic Kits (again, see link below). Finally there is the rather crude version by SMER initially released in the 1960s.

Review copy courtesy of  the fine folks at Pacific Coast Models Inc
You can order your sheet direct, should you wish.

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