Italian Jet Aircraft of WWII
The Campini Caproni CC. 2
& Reggiane Re 2007
Reggiane Re 2007 (left) & Campini Caproni CC. 2
HyperScale is proudly supported by
During the mid 1930s, the world’s top aerodynamist realized that it
might be possible to build an aircraft to break the sound barrier. One
thing they quickly figured out though, that it would not be a craft
propelled with spinning airfoils, otherwise know as a prop. Secondo
Campini took out a US patent in 1935 for a design of an aircraft that
might do the job. It described an aircraft that used the basic concept
that later became the CC 2.
The major difference of the proposal was that the crew sat in the
extreme nose of the aircraft while the incoming air entered an annular
intake duct. Like the CC 2, however it had a piston engine driving a
compressor to accelerate the air mass that was mixed with fuel and
burned. This was thought to provide enough thrust to reach the sound
barrier. Building a jet engine that we are familiar with today, that is,
one with an axial or centrifugal impeller providing the compressed air
for a turbine to burn was very difficult to construct during the 30s.
Using a piston engine to do the job instead of an integral compressor
was believed to be the quickest was to produce a jet engine.
Needless to say the resulting aircraft was too heavy and inefficient.
The CC 2 made what was thought to be the world’s first jet powered
flight in May 28, 1940. It was long after WW II ended when it was
realized that a He 178 made the first flight with a true turbine engine
in August the year before. There were two CC 2s made and they were
tested by the officials of the Regia Aeronautica up to the fall of 1942.
There were some concepts of a twin engine bomber proposed by the
Italians but the next time an engine similar to the Campini appeared in
an aircraft was in the Japanese Yokosuka Ohka model 22 in 1945. It used
a Hitachi four cylinder piston engine to drive its compressor to produce
200 kg of thrust. At least one CC 2 survived the war intact and is
preserved at a museum in Italy
The Reggiane Re 2007 was a good indication that the Italian engineers
had talent equal to the rest of the world. While small, the Italian
aviation community kept abreast with the development in the world of
flight. They did not lack ideas for fast aircraft but they did lack
powerplants. They constantly asked their German acquaintances for some
of their jet engine because they wanted to build an indigenous jet
fighter. Finally the Germans complied and sent two Jumo 004Bs axial flow
turbine engines to Reggiane, but they never arrived before the end of
the war in Europe. In the meantime, while waiting at the Reggiane
aircraft factory, work started on the Re 2007 in 1943. This was a very
modern design incorporating swept wings with four 20 mm cannons in the
nose using a single jet engine. It was a more refine aircraft then the
German’s volksjager , being faster, having more range and twice the
firepower at a lower weight. Since the situation in the south of Italy
was detiorating, in 1944, the work was moved north to the Caproni
factory near Milan.
It is really not clear just how far along the Re 2007 was when the war
ended but parts for the fighter were fabricated. The factory where the
Re 2007 was under construction was captured by the British. Drawings
with performance estimates of the Re 2007 appeared in British
publications in the 1960s and this is the information I used to create
the model. While the estimates were probably very optimistic, the Re
2007 could have easily filled the role of volksjager that the Luftwaffe
so badly desired since it was started long before the He162. Imagine
what could have been if the Germans encouraged their Italian
counterparts and imported the Re 2007 for their home defense fighter.
The Campini Caproni CC 2 is produced by Delta Models of Italy. My
earliest reference to the model is that it was first offered in 1974.
The kit leaves no doubt about how old it is. I picked up the model and
started it over 15 years ago. You could have hurt yourself from the
raise detail that was molded on. Also, I could not afford enough putty
at that time to fill in the seams between the wing and fuselage.
Needless to say, I put the model away.
In a recent effort to complete the many models that were started but
never completed over the years in order to justify buying new kits, it
was the CC 2 turn. I sanded down all of the raise rivets and used
plastic stock to fill in the wing/fuselage seam. After everything was
blended and sanded smooth the model was primed and check for scratches
before the aluminum paint was applied. The model always looked awkward
to me so at this point during the construction I took my scale ruler to
it. While the dimensions agree with the instructions that came with the
model, more recent information suggests that the model should be
smaller, as much as a half inch in the span, and we are not talking a
scale half inch either!
I average out the differences of the references and removed two thin
sections of the fuselage to reduce its length. Thankfully, the fuselage
is basically a long tube so after gluing everything back together, it
was easy to sand down. The wing was shorten with plastic stock added to
fill in the hole created by the surgery around the wing tips. Once
again, everything was primed and polished for the final coat of paint.
Testor’s Model Master aluminum plate metalized paint was used. When
dried, I masked off the fuselage with tape and sprayed only near one
edge to create the look that many different sheets of metal used to make
the aircraft. I added a drop of white paint just to make sure the
shading would be more pronounce. The fuselage section under the
elevators was the hot section and it was sprayed with some Burnt Metal
mixed in with the Aluminum.
Even the two canopies had to be reduced by sanding. Once the desired
sized was reached, they were polished back to clear and finished with
Bare Metal Foil aluminum for the frames. Amazingly, after all these
years, the decals went on with no problems. No wonder I did not want to
complete this model at first, but I needed it to contrast the Re 2007 so
it was dug out and finished.
The Re 2007 was a complete scratchbuilt project. Drawings were made from
the references and glued onto a dense polyurethane foam material as
templates. It was then carved out creating the fuselage with canopy
fairing, and separate pieces for the wings, vertical stabilizer with
rudder and two horizontal stabilizers with elevators. They were all
glued together, seams filled and sanded. The canopy, as well as the
landing gear doors because of their curves, were vacuformed from
Since the aircraft was being made in the northern part of Italy that was
still loyal to Mussolini, it would have been flown by the Repubblica
Sociale Italiana if it was completed. Therefore it was marked as a
fighter in the RSI service. Color finish is Italian Olive green on top
and light gray on bottom with dry transfers taken from a Supermodels
Macchi 205, which was also used by the RSI.
While this model was not a kit, it took much less time to build than the
CC 2! I understand that the Re 2007 is now offered as a resin kit,
however I haven’t seen it yet. Seeing these two aircraft side by side in
1/72 scale shows just how much evolution in aircraft technology occurred
in five short years.
Model, Images and Text Copyright ©
2004 by Tom Conte
Page Created 09 December, 2004
09 December, 2004
HyperScale Main Page