1/48 Macchi Mc.202 Folgore

Gallery Article by Robert-Jan Willekens on Nov 19 2003

 

Here is a model which gave me a lot of grief. It is the Tauro Macchi 202 Folgore, maybe for me the most elegant fighter of the second World War. Built as a follow-up type to the MC.200 Saetta, the airframe is basically the same; however the radial engine was replaced by a license-built Daimler-Benz DB601A engine. The engine was produced by Alfa Romeo, and was called the Monsone. In itself a fairly basic fighter, the most astonishing was its use of asymmetrical wings! The port wing was a couple of centimeters larger in span, to offset the engine torque. Quite an elegant solution! The Mustang, for example, countered engine torque by offsetting the vertical tail by about 2 degrees. The design also had, like the P-51, a ventral oil cooler.

After the Italian Armistice in September 1943, those Folgores based in southern Italy were flown by the Co-Belligerent Air Force. A total of 23 MC.202s eventually joined the Allied forces, and were deployed from Lecce, operating mainly over the Balkans.

My model depicts a Macchi Folgore of the 8th Gruppo C.T., based out of Lecce-Galatina in the summer of 1944. Colours are Nocciola Chiaro (Light Hazelnut - FS 30266)with Verde Oliva Scuro (Dark Green - FS 34052) rings over Grigio Azzuro Chiaro (Light Blue-grey - FS 36307). The paints are Humbrol; the decals come from the Tauro kit. The model could be built with all the trimmings: open panels, cockpit, deployed  flaps, separate flying surfaces, etc. etc. But: they didn't fit! I guess I'm spoiled with all the kits I've built from Hasegawa and Tamiya!. Anyway; I glued all the panels close, sanded the whole bit, and ended up with this model. The lines of the aircraft are very well displayed, I must say, and the end result is quite nice.

Robert-Jan Willekens

      

Photos and text by Robert-Jan Willekens