Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Military in Scale Assi Hahn's Friedrich

Iain Ogilvie's impressive 32nd Hasegawa Friedrich finished in the markings of Gkr. III./JG 2 Assi Hahn features on the cover of and inside the December 2011 issue of Military in Scale.

The Friedrich enters service with Kanalgeschwader JG 2

" ..II. and III./JG 2 started conversion onto the latest 'F' variant of the celebrated Messerschmitt fighter during March 1941. The 'Friedrich' presented a number of enhancements over the successive improvements introduced to the venerable "Emil" with which the Jagdwaffe had gone to war over Poland. The basic airframe had undergone a redesign with the aim of improving aerodynamic efficiency - especially in the area of the wing and tailplane. Both spinner and wingtips were rounded and more streamlined and the Emil's horizontal stabilizer brace supports had been eliminated. In addition the tailwheel was now fully retractable. However the Friedrich did not feature wing armament and weight of fire was thus reduced in comparison to the older sub-type. There were also some structural issues with early examples, a number of pilots being lost after tearing the wings off in high 'G' manoeuvres. The most notable loss was JG 2 Kommodore Wilhelm Balthasar on 3 July 1941.."

JG 2 fighter aces and victory claims 1941

"...from the Kommodoren to the Kommandeure down to the Staffelkapitäne the fact is that the Luftwaffe's leading fighter Geschwader JG 2 made something of an art of 'over-claiming' as a reading of Erik Mombeeck's history of JG 2 covering the year 1941 makes clear,  For example, the Kommandeur III./JG 2 Hans "Assi" Hahn is generally credited with 108 victories, 66 of which were scored on the Western Front. This total - to no-one's apparent disbelief - includes 53 Spitfires! "