Reggiane Fighters

The Caproni-Reggiane Re.2000 Falco I was an Italian all metal, low-wing, monoplane with a Curtiss-style retractable undercarriage, used in the first part of World War II. This lightly built and highly manoeuvrable interceptor/fighter, similar to the Seversky P-35, flew for the first time in 1939. It proved a technically advanced aircraft, well balanced and extremely aerodynamic, but not without its faults. Although potentially superior to Italian contemporary fighters (Fiat G.50 and Macchi C.200), the Re.2000 was not considered satisfactory by Italian military authorities. Consequently, the manufacturer built it for export and almost all of the first production served with the Swedish Air Force and Hungarian Air Force, rather than in the Regia Aeronautica. The Reggiane Re.2001 Falco II a contemporary of the renowned Macchi C.202, the production of this type was to be limited to only 252, but it was a flexible design that proved to be able to undertake a number of roles. Thanks to its manoeuvrability it could dogfight with more powerful opponents like the Supermarine Spitfire. The Re.2001 became the basis of a later, more formidable fighter, the Re.2005. The Reggiane Re.2002 Ariete was an Italian fighter-bomber developed during World War II. The aircraft was a further development of the Re.2000, with some of the modifications that already had been introduced in the Re.2001. The aircraft was mainly used by the Regia Aeronautica, but it also saw limited use with the German Luftwaffe, who used it against the French resistance. The Reggiane Re.2005 Sagittario ('Archer') was considered by many to be 'the most beautiful plane of the Second World War'. Along with the Macchi C.202/C.205 and Fiat G.55, the Reggiane Re.2005 was one of the three Serie 5 Italian fighters. The well balanced lines of the fuselage were aerodynamically perfect, and everything was designed to get the most out of the famous Daimler-Benz DB 605 engine. The only difficulty was a certain structural weakness in the rear section of the fuselage. Only 48 examples had been delivered, before Armistice, these fighters fighting in the defence of Naples, Rome and Sicily, the survivors battling above the crumbling ruins of Berlin, with German insignia. Well-respected ace and military observer, Group Captain Duncan Smith, DSO DFC, stated: 'The Re.2005 was altogether a superb, potent aeroplane. Info: Wikipedia Profiles: Fighting Aircraft of World War II Published by Salamander Books. Wings Palette

Reggiane Fighters
Roelf, Jun 17, 2011
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