Thursday 30 December 2021

Reviews - "Luftwaffe fighters - Combat on all Fronts " Vol I



Review in the current issue of "Avions" magazine

" ..The book-a-zine/Mook is a magazine disguised as a book. It brings together several articles on the same subject but is competitively priced (£9.99 for Luftwaffe fighters..'). By way of comparison, the format is almost the same as Lela Presse's 'Air Battles' with 130 pages and over a hundred photos. The ten articles of this Volume I written by Neil Page include general accounts (the evolution of the Bf 109, the birth of the Jagdwaffe), descriptions of campaigns (Norway 1940, Malta 1942, Courland 1945), a 20-page unit history (JG 51) as well as short or long biographies of little-known heavy or light fighter aviators (Biderbick, von Winterfeldt, Böttner, Kaschuba,... ). In other words the author has compiled a very wide overview of the history of the German day fighter arm, which is innovative and not lacking in interest. Recommended for aficionados of the history of WW II in the air..."

"Siko" on

"I’ll keep this short, this is a really interesting read with many new accounts and also lavishly illustrated with photos throughout, covering some lesser known units of the Luftwaffe and the fighter pilots who flew in them. Each account is liberally scattered with stories of combat, most of which seem new to me. Includes a very interesting piece on Reinhard Heydrich's career as a fighter pilot. Well worth picking up or as I did, free delivery through Morton's website..." 

 Alfred Monzat on TOCH

"..a great bookazine and I'm looking forward to the next volume.."

Leon Venter on TOCH

"...Morton's new "Luftwaffe fighters .." is a well-researched, high-quality publication that's a pleasure to read. Its eleven chapters are wide-ranging -- each describes a particular unit, pilot, aircraft or campaign. The narratives contain many personal accounts from lesser-known aces and ordinary Jagdflieger, with interesting insights about pilots, aircraft handling, armament, tactics, and operational conditions. At 130 pages, it's excellent value. It's profusely illustrated with excellent, well-captioned photographs, and even includes a glossary and a mini German grammar guide..."

Wednesday 29 December 2021

Hummel Hummel - Mors Mors


In Hamburg – before the advent of a mains water supply - water carriers, the so-called "bumblebees" were a common sight. They were often teased by children with the words "Hummel Hummel" - to which the reply was "Mors-Mors", an old retort known by anyone from the city of Hamburg – and still seen on car stickers today. And under the cockpit of the Fw 190 of a certain Gruppenkommandeur from Hamburg...

Wednesday 22 December 2021

I./JG 54 Friedrich - Wintertarnung


an unpublished image from the album of Hans Girke, a Wart in I./JG 54. Girke contributed to the Lela Presse two volume history of JG 54 (Philippe Saintes) reviewed elsewhere on this blog. Reproduced large across the screen to maximise details of the winter  finish. A yellow (?) Kennziffer is just visible as is the green heart (?) under the canopy.

perhaps a different view of the same machine as it is pushed back into its 'shelter'


Tuesday 21 December 2021

1/SG.4, Rieti airfield, March 1944


1./SG 4 Fw 190 - click on the image above for screen-wide view. 

Captioned by Denys Boudard as 1/SG.4, Rieti airfield, March 1944. Reposted larger here.

ECPA-D photos posted by Denys Boudard on FB

Monday 20 December 2021

IBG Models PZL P.11b (Romanian service) in 72nd


Zygmunt Puławski’s PZL Państwowe Zakłady Lotnicze (or State Aviation Works) P.11 fighter was for a brief period between the wars one of the world's leading fighter designs. While most fighters of the time were of biplane configuration, Pulawski developed a 'family' of fighters fitted with a high-mounted and aerodynamically clean gull wing faired into the fuselage replacing the cabane struts of the biplane and which provided the pilot with a superior field of view. The P.11 was Poland's primary fighter during the 1930s and the aircraft enjoyed considerable export success. Romania (with 14 P.7s, 190 P.11s and 30 P.24s) was the second main user of the PZL "gull wing" fighters. The PZL P.11b was the Romanian 'export' version of the P.11a.

During 1932 French engine manufacturer Gnome-Rhône expressed interest in equipping the P.11 fighter with their engine, counting on export orders. In the same year the prototype P.11/IV with Gnome-Rhône 9Kcr Mistral 550 hp engine aroused interest from the Turkish, Romanian, Portugese, Greek, Swedish, Czechoslovak, Japanese and Yugoslavian air forces.

Several of these countries decided to purchase the subsequent P.24 version. Romania ordered the P.11 version equipped with the GR 9K Mistral produced in Romania under licence. The PZL factory started Romanian production ahead of the Polish Air force's P.11a. To speed up the work some of the structural solutions (the wing) from the previous PZL P.7a were used. The order for 50 aircraft was delivered at the turn of 1933-34 (coded from 1 to 50) and the type was still in service as an advanced trainer in Romania during WW II. In Romania, manufacturer IAR subsequently produced ninety-five P.11f’s under licence. Production started in 1936 at IAR’s Brasov plant, airframe codes 51 to 145 being allocated to these machines. At Poland’s fall large quantities of Polish aircraft, including some P.11c’s, escaped to Rumania.

IBG's family of PZL P.11 models in 72nd scale are very nicely detailed kits, well-engineered and superbly molded. The scale effect 'corrugated' skinning on the wings is probably the best representation of it I've seen, certainly in 1:72nd scale. The kit also features a detailed IAR 9K engine and a photoetched fret with some tiny details such as throttle lever, seat harness, rudder pedals, gun-sight, undercarriage strengthening wires and the windscreen frame. Much of the sheet in fact is not required for this kit. Inevitably perhaps - for those of us with 'fatter' fingers and poorer eyesight - not every etch part will be used. The control surfaces - elevators, rudder and ailerons- are all separate parts. Fit is very good - as it has to be with so many small parts. Decals are by Techmod with options for three Romanian machines.

Saturday 11 December 2021

Henschel Hs 129 Panzerknacker Panzerjäger - ebay photo find #351


Der Kampf geht unerbittlich weiter! 

PK series of the Henschel Hs 129 Panzerknacker Panzerjäger of Hauptmann and Staffelführer of 10.(Panzer)/Schlachtgeschwader 9, Rudolf-Heinz Ruffer, RK on 9 June 1944, KIA on 16 July 1944, his aircraft hit by Soviet flak over Poland while attacking Soviet armoured formations. The machine exploded and he was killed instantly. At the time of his death he had recorded approx 80 tank kills.. 

Letter from Generalleutnant Seidemann dated 13 March 1944, signed by Hptm. Ruffer (Staffelkapitän 10 (Pz)./SG 9), in recognition of the excellent performance of his Staffel in destroying 19 T-34s west of Proskuroff on March 12  " ..easing the rather threatening situation..[..] and playing  a decisive role in the defence and destruction of the enemy attacks on Proskuroff..[..]...I express my very special appreciation to Fw. Dittrich who accounted for seven T-34s alone.."

Monday 6 December 2021

some images from the JG 2 archive - ebay photo find #349

..a seller asking some huge prices for several nice JG 2 images including Schnell's rudder scoreboard, Hahn's Fw 190 and Friedrich, a close-up of the III./JG 2 Abschusstafel during the campaign in France and Gen. der Jagdflieger Galland in front of the Kommodore's Fw 190.

On offer here