Macchi C.202 Folgore

By Przemyslaw Skulski
Mushroom Model Publications, ©2005
ISBN 83-89450-06-2
Softbound, 96 Pages
Available from Mushroom for £9.99

Reviewed by Chris Banyai-Riepl

The second title in Mushroom's Orange Series, this book continues the 'orange' concept of combining Mushroom's Red Series that cover history and their Yellow Series, which are dedicated aircraft monographs. For such a fascinating aircraft as the C.202, this combination makes this a book well worth having. The book is broken down into logical sections, first dealing with the development, then the operational record. Following this comes the majority of the book, the technical data and detail photos. Finishing up the book is a profile section, showing some of the many color schemes worn by the C.202.

For those who need help deciphering what all the different C.202 Series are, the section on the development of the type will be of immense help. This section, after outlining the initial creation of the type, breaks down the specific Series, from Series I to Series XVI, with scale drawings of many of these, showing the various differences. This will be of great use to the modeler, as not only are the differences outlined, but also included are the serial numbers for each Series. This will make identification from photos very easy.

Speaking of photos, this book has plenty of those. Throughout the development and operational history sections there are many clear photos showing the C.202 at various stages during its lifespan. These flow nicely into the photo detail section, which combines period construction photos with images of museum examples. This book draws upon the two surviving examples, those being a C.202 Serie XI at the Museo Storico Dell' Aeronautica Militare Italiana in Rome and the unknown C.202 (which could be a Serie VI to IX machine) at the National Air & Space Museum in Washington, DC. With these many examples to work from, there is little left unseen in these walkaround photos.

The history section and profile features do an excellent job of detailing the appearance and operations of this type. The C.202 saw extensive service with the Regia Aeronautica in several theaters, including Italy, North Africa, and the Eastern Front. In addition to service in the Italian air force, the book covers operations with other forces, such as the Luftwaffe, as well as captured examples with various Allied forces. The profiles are well done, with 48 side view illustrations and four top view illustrations. Just about every standard camouflage scheme is presented, making this an excellent reference for the modeler.

This second title in Mushroom's Orange Series continues the standard set by their PZL P.23 Karas book. The combination of an aircraft monograph and aircraft history makes for a well-rounded book that will be popular with modelers and historians alike. My thanks to Mushroom Model Publications for the review copy.

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