Saturday 30 November 2013

Aces and pilots of JG 51 continued ... (Part 17) Lt Horst Haase

Courtesy of Michael Meyer, more aces and pilots of JG 51 including two images of a pilot identified as Horst Haase (above & below)

According to the seller these two images show Lt. Horst Haase dismounting from his Me 109 Friedrich of 10./JG 51 during the summer of 1942 in Russia. AFAIK these are the first two images of Haase to surface - other than the standard studio portrait. Haase is a pilot I've always had a particular interest in, having written and published articles on IV(Sturm)./ JG 3. (the resemblance though to the "Haase" in the photo at bottom seems rather dubious..? ) Haase was awarded the RK on 24 October 1944 and achieved around 55-60 Luftsiege including around 12 Viermots. As Staffelkapitän of 2./JG 51 he had achieved 46 victories when he was posted back to the West during May 1944 with 2. Staffel being incorporated into IV.(Sturm) / JG 3 at Salzwedel becoming the new 16. Staffel./JG 3 in August 1944. He thus features in Prien's IV./ JG 3 Gruppe history - although not photographically IIRC. Flying a heavily armed and thoroughly unmanoeuverable FW 190 A8-R2 Sturmbock in close formation must have been a world away from the low altitude turning dogfights or Kurbelein that characterised  air combat over the Russian Steppes. Yet Haase and other JG 51 aces such as Klaus Neumann and Oskar Romm were to become leading bomber killers and Knight’s Cross winners during the summer and autumn of 1944  in the Reichsverteidigung - defence of the Reich. Over Oschersleben on 7 July 1944 he claimed two B-24s and achieved victories during most of the Sturmgruppe actions that summer. Over Kassel on 27 September 1944 he downed a 445th BG B-24 for his 55th victory, while Oskar Romm brought down three B-24s in the same action. From 16 October 1944 he flew as Kommandeur of I./JG 3 but collided near Erkerlenz with his Rottenflieger on 25 November 1944 shortly after getting airborne in poor weather conditions and was killed in the crash. He was posthumously promoted to Major.

Below and bottom left; three images of  Lt. Bernhard Vechtel seen here in the East during the summer of 1942 . Vechtal was awarded the RK on 27 July 1944 and claimed in total some 108 Luftsiege, surviving the war. During April 1945 he was Staffelkapitän of 14./JG 51, seen below climbing out of a Me 109 Friedrich of 11./JG 51

Below; Fw Herbert Friebel returned 58 Luftsiege and was awarded the RK on 24 January 1943. KIA on 15 May 1944 as Staffelkapitän of 10./JG 51 - after downing a  Jak-9, hitting the ground and bursting into flames while chasing a La-5 (Bodenberührung mit Aufschlagbrand ) in the region of Horodyslyce south west of Tarnopol.

Below; 10./JG 51 pilot Ofw. Franz-Josef Beerenbrock seen during the summer of 1942. Awarded the RK on 6 October 1941 and the EL on 3 August 1942, claiming some 117 victories in total. Put down behind Russian lines on 9 November 1942 after shooting down three Russian machines north of Welish and was taken prisoner and survived the war.

Above, from left to right; Lt. Rolf Kickert, 6 Luftsiege as Staffelkapitän of 10. Staffel MIA on 17 December 1942, Lt. Bernhard Vechtel, Lt. Horst Haase (?) and Lt. Wolfgang Böwing-Treuding, awarded the RK on 24 March 1943 posthumously for 46 Luftsiege, KIA on 11 February 1943 while strafing a Russian transport column near Dubnitza west of Welikje Luki, hit by anti-aircraft fire.

Much more like this from Michael Meyer here 

More pilots and aces of JG 51 on this blog

Emils over the Med JG 27 & 7./ JG 26

During early February 1941 the 'red hearts' of 7./ JG 26 deployed to Sicily to combat the RAF over Malta under Staffelkapitän Oblt. Joachim Muencheberg. It appears that there is a metal pennant on the aerial mast of this Bf 109 E-7 (obscured by the seller) so that this may have been the machine flown by the Staffelkapitän. Click on the images for a full-screen view

Inscription on the reverse dated 20 April 1941. Courtesy lohrleerblatt here

Friday 29 November 2013

Fw 190s of I./JG 51 Heinrich Krafft - Ebay Luftwaffe photo find

Selection of I./JG 51 Fw 190s via Manuel Rauh at engelbubu-fotos . Above, original caption reads "Wartungsdienst" (servicing..) on "Yellow 9 " and "Yellow 10", 3. Staffel Fw 190 A-3s ( note the small round bulge on the MG cowl cover). The images on offer feature Hptm Heinrich Krafft who was awarded the RK on 18 March 1942 for 78 Luftsiege. On 14 December 1942 Gruppenkommandeur Krafft  was brought down in his Fw 190 A-3 (WNr 539) by Russian anti-aircraft fire and killed on the ground by his captors. Below; Krafft (according to the inscription on the reverse of the pic but ??) at the controls of a Emil/Friedrich of the Stab./JG 51 prior to a sortie..

Late in August 1942 Hauptmann Heinrich Krafft’s I./JG 51 became the first fighter  unit to re-equip with the Fw 190 on the eastern front having converted onto the Fw 190 A-3 at Jesau near Königsberg (photo left). The unit’s arrival at Lyuban airdrome, south of Leningrad, caused great concern to the Soviets. Introduced into the theatre when the German armies in the East had been all but checked, the robust new fighter was superior in most respects to the Bf 109 especially with regard to weight of fire, engine reliability in cold weather conditions and its relative invulnerability to combat damage. The wide track undercarriage came into its own on difficult terrain and of course facilitated the carriage of ordnance on the under fuselage ETC 501 carrier pending the widespread introduction of a dedicated fighter-bomber or Schlacht (Battle) variant. The aircraft of  I./JG 51 were finished  with two tone dark green 70/71 upper surfaces sprayed in a ‘splinter’ type scheme over pale blue-grey 76 undersides. The combat environment in Russia would dictate the use the use of shades of green, brown and greyish-green. In addition, as units moved further from Germany, shortages of materials, local needs and individual initiative would come to directly affect combat colours. Incidentally the image of Oskar Romm’s A-3 ‘white 9’ in Meyer and Stipdonk’s JG 51: eine Bilddokumentation indicates that this scheme was applied prior to the move to Russia. The individual Staffeln continued to be identified by coloured numbers, white for the first, black for the second and yellow 27 for the third. The only unit to remain on Fw 190s throughout JG 51’s time in the East was the Stabsstaffel. 

Above; also reproduced on page 104 of Rodeike's "Jagdflugzeug 190" 'chevron bar' of the Stab I./ JG 51 is also finished in dark greens. Note the yellow fuselage band under the Balkenkreuz
Below;  according to the inscription on the reverse of this image this is " Hptm Kraft pictured just prior to his last flight ".....

Below; not in the current auction, but three nice views of a 1.Staffel and Stab I./ JG 51 machine.  Note the Geschwader emblem was carried on the cowling and the Gruppe badge, a stylised Chamois on a rock, under the cockpit, although unit badges were dispensed with relatively quickly in Russia.

More JG 51 Fw 190s on this blog

Below; selection of "Aeroplane" archive images via seller "gerbeltom" here  including Junkers Ju 352, G 38, He 100, Hs 129 etc

Wednesday 20 November 2013

Hartmann's last Erla-built Bf 109 G-10 Revell new-tool box art

Box-art for next year's new-tool 1:32nd Revell Bf 109 G-10 based on a photo that first came to light a couple of years ago. This was a new view of Hartmann's last Erla-built Bf 109 G-10 and showed a little more of the aircraft than the red heart and part of the Gruppenkommandeur's Doppel-winkel-  this G-10 apparently featured the tulip marking..however everything aft of the Balkenkreuz is still guess work although we can be pretty much certain that there would be no fuselage band or yellow rudder.  The second image is 'well known' and was taken directly after the sortie resulting in Hartmann's 350th claim. Note the camouflage tunic worn in the air over the front to facilitate evasion should the pilot come down behind enemy lines.

This is the last known Hartmann machine for which there is photographic evidence apparently taken in mid-April '45 on the occasion of his 350th Abschuß. The G-10 variant was the "hottest" Bf 109 then available, so no surprise that Hartmann flew one and that it was in fact most likely to have been his last aircraft..

More on Hartmann's G-10 and discussion of his 'mythical' Bf 109 K-4 on this blog here

Anders Hjortsberg's updated artwork for this machine is here

Tuesday 19 November 2013

recent & latest Ebay Bf 109s - daily Luftwaffe photo find, JG 26, JG 54, JG 2, JG 53

 Another view of Hans von Hahn's Stab I./JG 3 Friedrich. Two more images of this machine here

Latest selection of Bf 109 finds, including 'Red 1' above, an Emil of 2./ JG 26  - note the Teufelskopf devil's head emblem under the cockpit. This appears to be the earlier "rounded" design of the emblem, the machine is an E-3 so this is probably a pre-Battle of Britain shot. Staffelkapitän Fritz Losigkeit flew 'Red 16'- this may or may not be one of his machines. Also in this post, "white 11" a 1./ JG 2 Emil with bonzo dog emblem on the cowl, a JG 26 Emil down on the Channel coastline, I./ JG 54 with Stadtwappen Nürnberg (city of Nuremberg coat-of-arms) and JG 3 and JG 53 aces.

offered again by dw-auction. Previously seen here in July 2013 this is a II./JG 3 Bf 109 Gustav..(a G-2?), displaying 11 Abschussbalken evidently assigned to the Gruppenstab. Note the yellow frame-width theatre band directly aft of the fuselage Balkenkreuz. Long-time Gruppen-Adjutant of II./JG 3 was Ltn. Max-Bruno Fischer who achieved around 12 victories..