The Reggiane Re.2005 Sagittario was one of the best fighters produced by the Italian aircraft industry during the Second World War. The prototype, powered by a Daimler-Benz DB 605A engine, was first flown in September 1942. Although the Sagittario possessed the same wing plan form as the earlier Reggiane fighters, it embodied extensive structural redesign and employed outward retracting main landing gear first tested on the Re.2002bis. Production deliveries commenced in 1943, the production model having a Fiat built version of the DB 605A known as the Tifone (Typhoon). Of the forty-eight fighters delivered, the majority were allocated to the 22° Gruppo Caccia which was initially assigned to the defense of Rome and Naples and one Squadriglia, the 262°, participated in the defense of Sicily. The initial production series of 300 machines reached an advanced stage, but construction was halted by bombing.
The Pacific Coast Models kit comes in a medium sized top open box with nice artwork of the Re.2005 dueling with a Spitfire. The box is not overly sturdy but adequate. Just a quick note about Pacific Coast Models, they are distributor as well as a facilitator for new kits. The kit is actually tooled and molded in the Czech Republic by Sword, who molds kits for others as well and the kit includes decals by Cartograpf and photo etch by Eduard. I'm not sure who does their resin work. Inside the box is one large zip lock bag with all the parts. The resin parts were in their own zip lock bag as were the photo etch fret and the clear parts were in a sealed bag. As you can see in the photo below this is a rather simple kit, however it contains every thing one needs to create a nicely detailed model without a lot of fiddly parts added just to boost the parts count. There are just three sprues of injection molded parts in a medium gray color. One sprue has the upper and lower wings, one the tail surfaces and bottom side radiator and the third has the fuselage halves and the balance of the parts. The parts have a smooth glossy finish and features recessed panel lines and fastener detail. There is some raised detail as appropriate, mostly hinge lines for access panels. Typical of limited run kits there is a small amount of flash present and some of the sprue attachment points are quite heavy and would best be dealt with using a razor saw. I found no surface defects on any of the airframe surfaces. All of the flight control surfaces are molded in the neutral position and the fabric surfaces are very discretely done. The smaller parts tend to have a bit more flash on them and the mold parting lines will require a bit more work to clean up than main stream kits. The propeller has separate blades but unlike many limited run kits, these are keyed to give you the correct blade angles. I found no ejector pin marks that will show when the kit is built up. There is a total of 39 parts molded in gray. See below.
The kit comes with a nice supply of parts molded in resin. The resin parts include the cockpit floor, two side walls, seat, instrument panel, control stick, rudder bar, main and tail wheel gear bays, tail wheel mount, weighted main wheels. radiator core, gun sight, blast tubes for the cowling (optional) torque scissors for the landing gear and exhaust stacks. There are also machine guns for the wing but these would best be replaced by some hypo tubing or an after market product. The resin is beautifully molded with no short shots or visible pin holes. One of my torque scissors was broken and the piece was MIA. The exhaust stacks were a mystery as one had shrouds molded on both sides and one had no shrouds. The instructions show a shroud on one side of each. Nothing that a little styrene won't fix. Most have heavy pour blocks to remove so care will be require when removing these. See below.
The kit also includes a small color photo etch fret with the rather unusual Italian seat harness and belt, a two part instrument panel, foot straps for the rudder bar and an assortment of levers for the cockpit. Using the instrument panel will require removing the raised detail on the resin instrument panel. It's always a toss up in this scale whether to go with the nicely prepainted but one dimensional IP or spend the time to paint up the nicely molded 3D resin part. See Below.
The clear parts are reasonably thin and clearer than they appear in the photo below. Frame lines are nicely distinct and should make masking and painting easy. See below.
The decals are thin, glossy and well registered with minimal excess clear film. Marking are provided for five aircraft although some of them are from the same group but with different numbers. A fair amount of stencillings is provided. These are printed by Cartograph, one of the premier decals printers in the world so I would expect no problems applying these. See Below.
The instructions are printed on two small pages folded and stapled to create a small booklet with printing on seven pages. The front page has a brief history, the second a parts map, the first part of the third page has an icon chart and color call outs using color names only, the balance of the book is assembly steps. A separate page printed in color and folded to create four pages has the painting and decal information. The last page of this has a decal guide, a reference list and an Italian paint guide listing all the commonly used Italian colors with FS 595 numbers, Humbrol, Tamiya, Gunze, Model Master and Life Color equivalents. A very handy guide to have, don't toss this when the kit is finished !
After Market Goodies
Not really any need for these unless you want a canopy mask or replacement gun barrels. These should be easy enough to find if available by searching the major on line stores line Sprue Brothers and Squadron.
This is a very nicely detailed and complete kit and will build into a lovely model of the Re.2005. As limited run kits go this is one of the better ones. Just bear in mind that with this type of kit that trial fitting all parts before gluing is a must and expect to need to do some minor reshaping and filing as you go. Recommended to modelers with a few limited run kits under their belts.
Links to kit build or reviews