Macchi C.202 Folgore – 21° Gruppo Autonomo C.T. – 1943
Bonjour dear iModelers,
I wanted to make a “full options” model, with difficult camouflage, just to test my possibilities. My choice fell on the MC.202 Folgore d’Hasegawa, re-boxed by Eduard in 2016 in Limited Edition (#1132), i.e. with some resin parts, photoetched parts, masks, and a superb sheet of decals made by Cartograf. Unfortunately, as usual, Eduard does not include all of the accessories on offer in these limited editions. So I added the kit for the complex hydraulic piping located in the undercarriage bay (#648 278), as well as the exhausts (#648 281).
My choice fell fairly quickly on an MC. 202 VI of 21 ° Gruppo Autonomo C.T., a unit which had been urgently dispatched to the Eastern Front to help the German ally. As this Gruppo was previously based in North Africa (I’m assuming Libya), the camouflage is desert type, and yellow stripes and white triangles were soon painted to improve identification. I found this camouflage unusual and interesting to make.
So I was not disappointed with the difficulty of editing and painting, but with a little patience we get there. I didn’t manage to fit all the accessories in photoetched parts, there are some unwelcome interferences during assembly, especially in the cockpit. Annoying. It was in the photoetched part that I found my limits. Given what remains visible once the fuselage is closed, one can wonder if this is sometimes of interest. Finally, let us note once again that if the Hasegawa models are endowed with a very beautiful and fine panel engraving, their assembly is no less delicate, requiring puttying and sanding (and therefore re-engraving). Certainly, this model dates from the previous millennium, but at the time, Tamiya was already making Tamiya…
The assembly of the hydraulic piping in the undercarriage bay does not call for any particular comment. By following the instructions precisely and with care, it can be assembled quite easily. This resin kit is a real “plus”.
I had a lot of fun painting, especially painting the green spaghettis. This works relatively well on flat surfaces, less well on curved surfaces, where spiderwebs are difficult to avoid, of course due to the high dilution rate. Rather than annoying myself in vain, I did what I could, then “smoothed out” the imperfections by reprojecting hazelnut color diffusely onto the imperfections. Finally, I like the result. To do this, I used a Mr. Procon Boy FWA (PS-270) with 0.2mm nozzle. The paints are all Mr. Hobby Aqueous, and I followed Eduard’s recommendations for paint references.
The installation of Cartograf decals does not pose any problem. I use Tamiya Mark Fit which has the advantage of being a “2 in 1” product: adhesive and softener.
As for the washes, I applied thinned ocher oil paint to all surfaces except the yellow parts where I applied a dark gray. In the few photos in my possession, often of poor quality, it seemed to me that the camouflage held up quite well. So I haven’t weathered much. And then I wanted this particular camouflage to remain clearly visible. The exhaust traces are well marked, but without exaggeration.
Finally, I varnished with a 50/50 mixture of Mr. Color UV Cut GX 112 (Gloss) and GX 113 (Matte), all diluted to 50% with Mr. Color Leveling Thinner.
I can understand that this type of camouflage is a drag for some, it was for me until I finally made up my mind. The key is to have your airbrush securely in hand, whatever it is. And patience. But quite frankly, with a minimum of care, it is quite achievable. My message is: to anyone who is hesitant, if you think you are comfortable enough with your airbrush, go for it!
I hope you like it. See you soon for new adventures!
13 additional images. Click to enlarge.