Fiat G.55 Centauro
- Manufacturer: Pacific Coast Models
- Scale: 1:32
- Aircraft: Fiat G.55 Centauro Serie 1
- Markings: Capt. Ugo Drago | 1^ Squadriglia, 2 Gruppo Caccia FS | Cascina Vaga (Pavia)| May 1944
- Aftermarket: None
- Scratchwork/Surgery: Scratchbuilt flaps, separated control surfaces, various scratchbuilt details
Pacific Coast’s Fiat G.55 is far from the perfect fit, with no small amount of fit issues or areas that could really use better detail or thinner plastic. It’s a limited production kit – and it shows. But for all that, I had an absolute blast building the thing. It’s rough around the edges, sure, but in ways that can be surmounted. Dodgy fits can be massaged, muddled details can be removed and scratchbuilt without having to rethink the entire kit. Still, I can’t quite explain why I loved this build as much as I did. I encountered issues that would be – and have been – dealbreakers with other kits. I can only guess that my lowered expectations coming into a limited production kit played a role, as did the good massively outweighing the frustrating.
Detail – 3
The detail this kit exhibits varies wildly, from crisp and restrained panel lines to shallow, vague valleys along the control surfaces. In this it felt rather similar to Eduard’s older Gavia-vintage kits. Another serious downside was the extreme thickness of the plastic, a definite drawback with items where you can see the thickness – such as gear doors.
Engineering – 3
Engineering is an area where the kit could improve. There’s a lot of resin that comes together in the forward fuselage and inner wing area, and of course it all conflicts and has to be ground and hacked to pieces to get everything to fit. The lower wing join is a mess, as is the tailwheel connection.
Fit – 3
Depends where you look. Fuselage halves? Perfection? Wingroots? Not bad. Wing leading edges, particularly inboard of the cannons? Upper gun cowling? Mother-of-god terrible. Bring putty along for this build. You’ll need it.
Instructions – 3
Simple, short, wouldn’t have minded some different views of things, but on whole nothing particularly awful, and the color profiles are first rate.
Markings – 5
The Cartograf-printed decals are fantastic, and the marking options run through some pretty wild and dazzling paint schemes.
4 stars (nifty Italian flag “stars” graphic coming soon)
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