Classic Airframes 1/48 RE.2000 Falco Kit First Look
By Michael Benolkin
|Date of Review||May 2006||Manufacturer||Classic Airframes|
|Subject||Reggiane RE.2000 Falco||Scale||1/48|
|Kit Number||419||Primary Media||Styrene, Resin|
|Pros||Nice detailing, especially with the resin castings||Cons|
|Skill Level||Intermediate||MSRP (USD)||Out of Production|
The Reggiane RE2000 Falco was the first design of this new new subsidiary of Caproni and was intended for use in the Italian Air Force (Regia Aeronautica). The designers were strongly influenced by the Seversky P-35. The Falco first flew in May 1939, but ironically it was never ordered by the Regia Aeronautica.
The Falco was a good performing aircraft and orders were received from Sweden and Hungary. The Swedish examples were designated as J20s and served into 1946. The Hungarians obtained a manufacturing license for their examples, designated as 'Hejja' (Hawk). These aircraft served on the Russian front.
The Falco eventually entered service with the Regia Aeronautica as war needs forced the service to conscript some of the export aircraft orders. Powered by a 1000 hp air-cooled engine, this aircraft would be transformed into the RE2001 with the replacement of the engine with an in-line, liquid-cooled DB601 engine (in the early examples).
Classic Airframes released this kit to compliment the RE2001 released previoously in 1/48 scale. This example, the earlier RE2000 Falco, expands upon the Regia Aeronautica subject area that has been basically ignored by the mainstream model manufacturers.
As with the Classic Airframes RE2001 kit, this kit is a multimedia masterpiece of injection-molded styrene, resin, and vacuformed parts. There are two trees of medium gray styrene parts that comprise the airframe and major details. These parts feature finely engraved details.
The cockpit interior, engine, and other details are represented in finely cast and detailed resin parts. The canopy is provided as a crystal clear vacuform part.
One interesting facet of this kit is its ability to portray either a Series 1 version with a fully enclosed glass canopy, or a Series 3 machine with a razorback rear fairing (like the razorback P-47D) aft of the cockpit. This fairing is also provided as a resin part, should you choose the later series.
Construction appears to be very straightforward with no apparent challenges in the instructions.
Markings are provided for four examples:
- RE2000 Series 1, 74 Sqn, 23 Gruppo, 3 Stormo, Cosimo, 1941
- RE2000 Series 3, 377 Sqn, Boccadifalco, 1942
- Hejja, Hungarian Air Force, Russian Front, 1941
- J20, Swedish Air Force, 1945
This is a simple build and would be a good kit to attempt multimedia modeling for the first time. Beginner, intermediate or advanced builder, the RE2000 will be a colorful addition to your 1/48 flightline. It will look especially interesting parked next to a Hobbycraft/Academy 1/48 Seversky P-35!
My sincere thanks to Classic Airframes for this review sample!