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Caproni CA.311


Italeri, 1/72 scale

 

S u m m a r y

Item No. Italeri No. 1113 Caproni CA.311
Contents and Media: 117 light grey plastic parts on two sprues, 15 clear plastic parts on one sprue, decals for four aircraft plus a 5 page fold-out instruction sheet with history, parts plan, 10 build diagrams and 2 pages of paint/decal instructions.
Scale 1/72
Price: USD$22.50 available online from Squadron
around 8.50 available online from Hannants
Review Type: FirstLook
Advantages: Reasonable detail considering its age, good clear parts and decals.
Disadvantages: Old kit with some parts being very chunky, raised panel detail, no sidewall detail in the interior which will be visible.
Recommendation: Recommended to those interested in Italian subjects

 

Reviewed by Glen Porter


Italeri's 1/72 scale Caproni CA.311 is available online from Squadron.com

 

FirstLook


Background

The Caproni CA. 311 was designed for the Italian Air Force as reconnaissance aircraft with ground attack capabilities, entering service in 1940. Although found wanting due to engine reliability and performance, it soldiered on in North Africa and Russia, ending the war in specialized schools.



The Model

I believe this to be a very old kit judging by some of the plastic being on the chunky side and none of the fine moulding that we've become used to from Italeri. However, if you want a CA. 311 in Braille (or any other scale if it comes to that) I think this is it and I guess that's why Italeri have re-released it.

The sprues are quite flash free although there are a few ejector pin marks on the inside of the fuselage which will have to be dealt with as they will be visible through the multitude of windows along the fuselage sides. Also note that there is no sidewall detail but, apart from that, there is a reasonable amount of interior detail with instrument panel, control column, crew seats, dorsal turret with some detail underneath, bomb rack with a full load of bombs and ventral gun position which can be modelled open or closed.

 

Click the thumbnails below to view larger images:

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The engines look quite nicely detailed also and look like they will fit into the one-piece cowlings quite well, but the nacelles are another story. The left and right halves have to be joined together, trapping the undercarriage legs as you go ( it looks like they've been designed to retract, I did say the kit was old) making it tricky to paint or avoid breaking them during handling. The nacelles are then slid along the wings and into position. Problem is, these engines are mid-mounted, that is, there is almost as much nacelle above the wing as below but on the upper wing half, at the leading edge, there is a raised section as if to mount an under-slung engine. How do you get the nacelle past this? The answer is, I think, the top half of the nacelle should not be connected to the bottom half at the rear (it is on the sprue). This will allow the top half to be flexed up, moving the whole nacelle forward slightly and allow it to pass over the raised section. I hope. None of this is mentioned in the instructions so I guess the proof will be in the building.

 



The clear sprue is as we've come to expect from Italeri, very clear, thin and well detailed. There are two upper nose pieces, one with a stepped wind shield and another with a rounded nose like the Heinkel He 111. Then you get a dorsal turret, alternative ventral gun hatches (open and closed), the lower nose section and a host of side windows.

 

 

Markings

 

Decals by Zanchetti Buccinasco of Milan are beautifully printed with perfect register, good colour density and minimum carrier film. They cover four aircraft.

  • A is 38-5 in Dark Green uppers and Light Grey below with a Yellow Fuselage band.

  • B is 27-5 in a rather attractive Olive Green with Dark Green blotches on top and Light Grey underneath and a White fuselage band.

  • C with no Squadron or aircraft numbers is Sand and Dark Green above, Light Grey below and a White band.

  • D is White 128 on a Yellow band and the same colour scheme as A.

 

 

A and C have the stepped wind shield and no mention of Squadrons, time or place is given for any of the aircraft plus only B and D have serials.

 

 

Conclusion

 

This is an unusual aircraft that I think some modellers will find irresistible, especially those with an interest in things Italian. Although it is old I think it could, with a little forethought, be made into a really attractive model.

Recommended to all those with an Italian Bent.

Thanks to Italeri for the review sample


Review Copyright 2007 by Glen Porter
This Page Created on 30 September, 2007
Last updated 24 December, 2007

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