Friday 11 August 2023

Beute Flugzeuge - Czech Aero 101, Caudron C.445 Goéland - ebay photo find #362

Above; Czech Aero 101
Below; franz. Beute Flugzeug Caudron C.445 Goéland (Innenraum Cockpit)

Below;   C.445 "TE+WC" was no 945/9681 which left the factory on 17 January 1943 for the Luftwaffe to serve with FFS A2. On 16 April 1944 this machine made an emergency landing near Luxeuil after coming under attack by Allied fighters - damages assessed at 40%. It was repaired and reported at Toulouse in December 1945 and served with GC I/3 from January to March 1946. It was destroyed in a takeoff accident at Friedrichshafen on 17 March 1946. 

According to F. Picard in his 1976 book "L'Epopée de Renault" the Germans discovered some 75 part-constructed C.445 Goélands at Issy les Moulineaux in June 1940 and subsequently requested that these be completed and handed over to the Luftwaffe as 'war booty'. In view of the fact that all these machines were part of a French government order and had been already partly paid for, the directors of Caudron requested an order to this effect from the Vichy authorities enabling an 'official' restarting of the production line.  In the end Vichy 'ordered' and financed the completion of construction on these 75 aircraft, took delivery of them and then handed them over to the German authorities. The first C.445 completed for the Germans was no. 253 delivered to the Luftwaffe on 6 September 1940.  Johannes Kaufmann;

".. we liked flying the C.445 and we had good 'specialists' on hand to give advice. It was a nice machine and featured one innovation - the radio compass.."

It is an indisputable fact that French industry was responsible for training hundreds of German fighter and bomber pilots and radio operators - also leaving German industry free to produce those more 'important' types. In total some 515 C.445s were constructed for the Luftwaffe from new. In late 1942 those C.445s still in the former 'zone libre' were shared out with the Italians. Heinz J. Nowarra;

 ".. During 1942-44 when I worked for Junkers at their factories throughout central Germany I often saw C.445 Goélands in the air, most notably over Nietleben (Halle) where there was a radio operators' training school. The C5 FFS pilots school at Neubrandenburg also used the type. The aircraft also served for liaison and communication flights. The ace Marseille's outfit  -I./JG 27 - had at least one of them in North Africa. The Goéland was also employed as an air-sea rescure type. "SK+XM" was used by III./JG 2 while 'CD+YF' flew the commanders of L.fl. 2 to Italy.." 

from Cortet and Espérou in "Le Caudron Goéland"  - the first aircraft monograph from Lela Presse (undated)

Also on this blog; 

More C.445 reference for the RS models kit here

Sunday 6 August 2023

Luftwaffe models at the IPMS US Nationals, San Marcos, Texas


An appetiser. Head over to Gary's "Old Sarge's Model blog - link below- to see all the models on the display.

..and a couple of the competition category wining models from Mr Barry Numerick

 new Eduard Friedrich in the markings of JG 2 ace Schnell

and, how to get a 109 winning in the "Civil a/c" category

Also on this blog;

And more from San Marcos on Gary's "Old Sarge's Aircraft model blog" here

Thursday 3 August 2023

JG 52 Crimea/Ukraine January 1944 Kriegstagebuch (KTB, war diary) extracts - Jagdfliegerverbände volume Teil 15/II 'Einsatz im Osten'


As far as I know there is no actual JG 52 KTB although there exist various attempts to compile something that looks like one from different sources, most notably at I've compiled what follows using the new Prien/Stemmer/Balke/Bock JfV volume. My copy of JfV Teil 15/II was purchased from - brilliant service as usual from Buchverlag Rogge. 

KRIEGSTAGEBUCH JG 52 (KTB –War Diary extract)

During late 1943 the Germans (and their Romanian allies) withdrew from the Taman peninsula (Kuban bridgehead) while the Soviets mounted two amphibious landings across the Kerch Straits on the eastern coast of the Crimea as a prelude to conducting operations aimed at re-taking the entire Crimea peninsula. The southern, diversionary assault took place around the small town of Eltigen (now part of the city of Kerch) and the northern, main assault landed at Yenikale. During December 1943 the Soviets suceeded in establishing and reinforcing this beach-head and managed to push a few miles inland to the outskirts of Kerch.

During this period at the turn of the year 1943-1944, JG 52 under Kommodore Hrabak was based in the southern sector of the Eastern Front (Luftflotte 4) and came under Deichmann's I./Fl-Korps. Its constituent Gruppen flew  'free hunt' and 'bomber and Stuka escort' sorties. Increasingly they were scrambled to counter enemy ground-attack and bombing raids on their own airfields. 

III./JG 52 was based at Apostolowo on the lower reaches of the Dnieper some 40 kms south-east of Krivoi Rog on the rail line from Krivoi Rog to Saporoshje in southern Ukraine.  I./JG 52 was based at a field strip north of Kirovograd in Malaja Wiska (or 'Malaya Whiskey', southern Ukraine) while II./JG 52 was at Bagerovo, 5 miles west of Kerch under Hptm. Barkhorn. The 'Stukas' of II./SG2 (Fw 190) and III./SG 3 were also here, so within very easy reach of the front-lines. Weather conditions throughout January were unsettled and very changeable.  

Wednesday, 5th January 1944

After returning from a sortie with engine damage following combat with Il 2s, Ltn. Gerhard Schindler, leader of 7. Staffel, crash-landed and turned over his Bf 109 G-6 ‘white 9’ on the strip at Apostolowo. Visibility and field conditions were poor.

Friday, 7th January 1944

Apostolowo had to be evacuated as the tank spearheads of the 2nd Ukrainian Front pushed nearer. III./JG 52 shifted to Malaja Wiska, a field strip (Feldflugplatz) 35 kms north-west of Kirovograd in central-southern Ukraine. Possibly during the ferry flight, 8. Staffel ran into Airacobras around 30 kms south-east of Kirovograd. ‘Black 2’ flown by Uffz.Manfred Maiwald received a radiator hit and dove away trailing a banner of white smoke. His fate is uncertain. In the late morning 9.Staffel’s FhjFw.Herbert Bachnick claimed all five Il 2s shot down (between 11:22 and 11:49) during the first sorties flown over the Kirovograd area. The Staffelkapitän of 8./JG 52 Lt. Friedrich Obleser claimed the sole Airacobra to go down for his 83rd. Lt. Erich Hartmann, leading 9. Staffel, downed a LaGG at 14:20 and and a second five minutes later for victory nos. 161 and 162 in further combat over the Kirovograd region.

Saturday, 8th January 1944

Uffz. Heinz Ewald had been assigned to the Gruppenstab of II./JG 52 during the fall of 1943 and flew many sorties during this period as wingman to the Gruppenkommandeur Hptm. Gerhard Barkhorn. After his 8th victory - a Yak 1 over Bagerovo on an unknown date during January 1944 - Ewald was awarded the Iron Cross II. Class.

Sunday, 9th January 1944

After Russian tanks with infantry had liberated Kirovograd during the course of the day the first tanks were reported approaching German positions at the airfield of Malaja Wiska in the middle of the night. Ground personnel of III. Gruppe were deployed infantry-style to defend the airfield. Oberlt.Max Geissler and Ogefr. Xaver Tafler, both of the Stabskompanie, were killed in action. As many as seven Bf 109s were damaged. The Gruppe shifted to Novo-Krasnoye some 60 km south-west of Kirovograd

Monday, 10th January 1944

II. Gruppe reported 3 total losses. At about 08:00 Uffz. Heinz Janssen, 4. Staffel, was shot down and killed 1 km north of Katerles (ws. 8+ -). Fw. KarI- Heinz Otten, 6. Staffel, was shot down at 09:55 in dogfighting with Russian fighters east of  Cape Tarchan and has been missing since (ge. 4+ -). At about 11:50 Ofw. Karl Dannecker in 'black 9' failed to return after combat in the Bulganak area and was reported missing. 

Tuesday, 11th January 1944

Uffz. Herbert Deicke of 1. Staffel was KIA in combat with four Yak 1 fighters south-west of Bogodarewka. 2. Staffel reported Fhj. Gefr. Siegfried Hoffmann missing in action. He was last seen by comrades south-west of Kirovograd. Ltn. Helmut Lipfert, 6.Staffel leader, shot down a P-39 near Kerch at 11:27 for his 81st victory.

Wednesday, 12 January 1944

Early morning clashes saw elements of all three Staffeln of II./JG 52 in action against Schlachtflieger and their escorts. Contact with the enemy was made at around 06:50 north-east of Yeni-kale (Kerch strait) with a Boston formation escorted by Airacobras. Four victories were claimed – one Boston and one Airacobra by Lt Heinrich Sturm of 4./JG 52 (his 83rd and 84th), a Boston for Lt. Otto Fönnekold of 5.Staffel  (his 99th) and a single Airacobra for Uffz. Friedrich Haas for his fourth at 06:55. As early as 06:20 Uffz. Robert Hahn, 6. Staffel, was shot and wounded over the Cape Tarchan bridgehead. He belly-landed his ‘yellow 7’ on the ‘Hauptverbandsplatz’ (main runway) at Bagerovo where first aid was administered. At 06:50 Uffz. Ludwig Buchheit, 5. Staffel, was wounded west of Bakssy (north-east of Kerch) at the controls of his ‘black 7’ and carried out an emergency landing in German lines.

At 13:20 elements of II. Gruppe were scrambled behind the Kapitan of 6. Staffel (Lt. Helmut Lipfert) to counter an Il-2 formation under fighter escort. Combat was joined at around 13:45 north-west of Yeni-kale – Luftkampf mit vielen Il 2. Two Abschüsse were reported –an Il-2 and an Airacobra – the 100th and 101st claims for Lt. Otto Fönnekold of 5.Staffel .  Obfhr.  Helmut Thomas, 6. Staffel, was shot down and killed in combat at the controls of his ‘yellow 8’ coming down some 4 km north of Kerch.

Thursday 13 January

Despite poor weather conditions II./JG 52 flew escort for Stukas operating over the front in the eastern Crimea. There was little contact with the enemy. Fönnekold claimed a Yak 1 at 07:20 in the vicinity of Yeni-kale (Kerch strait). Similar sorties were flown the next day and the day after with only a handful of encounters.

Saturday, 15th January 1944

Fhj. Fw Peter Düttmann of 5./JG 52 claimed an Il-2 for his 28th (Cape Tarchan). Fhj. Fw. Hermann Wolf (9. Staffel), downed two Airacobras (9:52 and 10:01) for his 51st and  52nd victories..

Sunday, 16. January 1944

Lt. Kurt Klimann, 2. Staffel, failed to return from a sortie. He was last seen by comrades west of in combat with two Airacobras. Chasing an enemy fighter over the front lines his 'black 3' (WNr. 140217) came under heavy anti-aircraft fire south-east of Karlowka.   When Lt. Plücker gave the order to re-assemble, he acknowledged audibly. A short time later, Lt. Klimann could be heard a few more times, but only very weakly. Combats against Soviet fighters, bombers and ground-attack aircraft were widespread west and south-west of Kirovograd as the Soviet army pushed forward and some 16 claims were filed in total - Karl-Heinz Plücker downed two Il-2s, one at 10:22 and a second at 10:45, 18 km south-west of Kirovograd, his 25th and 26th.

At 09:34 Ltn. Franz Schall, 3. Staffel,  downed a  Yak 9 and at around midday returned three more victories – Airacobras at 11:51 and 11:52 and three minutes later an La 5 for his victories 30 – 33. Lt. Johann-Hermann Meier (3.Staffel) downed a Yak-9 at 09:30 and an Airacobra at 11:50 for his victories 74 and 75. He claimed a third for the day at 11:52.

Monday, 17 January 1944

I./JG 52 flew sorties north of Kirovograd, claiming a further ten victories including four R-5s for Ofw. Franz Woidich (3.Staffel) for his victories 63-66.

Thursday, 20 January 1944

Uffz. Alois Seibel, 3. Staffel, killed. When downing a Boston 5 km west of Darjewo his Bf 109 took hits. About 10 minutes later, on the return flight, his machine suddenly exploded.

Sunday, 23 January 1944

II./JG 52 put all available machines in the air on 'free-hunts' and Stuka escort duties. Late the previous evening a strong Soviet landing force had come ashore north of Kerch. Hptm. Gerhard Barkhorn, Kommandeur ll. Gruppe, returned from his 1,000th enemy flight (Feindflug). He was the first fighter pilot to achieve this high number of combat sorties. His three Yak-1 claims on this date took his victory total to 238. His Rottenflieger Uffz. Heinz Ewald filed his 9th claim. Fhj. Fw. Heinz Sachsenberg, 6. Staffel, shot down an Airacobra at 07:25 for his 60th victory.
Elsewhere Lt. Erich Hartmann in combat around Kirovograd downed four LaGGs to take his total to 176. 

Tuesday, 25th January 1944

Continuing sorties flown over the Kerch bridgeheads. Lt.Helmut Lipfert, Kapitän of 6. Staffel, attacked a Boston bomber formation, shooting down one of the escorts - a Yak 1 at 12:27 - and a Boston at 12:40 for his 87th and 88th victories. I. Gruppe flew into Bagerovo to support in the defensive battles over the eastern Crimea.

Thursday, 27th January 1944

Free-hunting and Stuka escort over the front-lines north of Kerch. Lt. Franz Schall, 3. Staffel, flew a ‘free hunt’ with his Rottenflieger, Uffz. Anton Resch, in the Kerch (Kertsch) area. Over Kerch, Luftkampf (air combat) with 6 Airacobras, during which Uffz. Resch was wounded. He pulled off an emergency landing. In a combat over Kolonka, at about 06:45 Uffz. Ludwig Vogel of 5.Staffel was slightly wounded. In mid-afternoon I./JG 52 was forced to evacuate Bagerovo for Grammatikovo.

Friday, 28 January 1944

Award of the German Cross in Gold:

Oblt. Wilhelm Batz, Adju. ll. Gruppe;

Lt. Helmut Lipfert, Kapitän 6. Staffel;

Ofw.Walter Janke, 2. Staffel pilot

5 February 1944

Early February saw poor weather over the Crimea - fog, heavy rainfall and low cloud - with only a handful of sorties flown. On 4 February elements of II./ JG 52 were ordered to the west coast via Grammtikovo-Karankut-Kunan in anticipation of air attacks and some machines flew on to Chersones on the south-east tip of the Crimea in the vicinity of Sevastopol. On this date Fw. Hans Waldmann of 6./JG 52 (temporarily detached as Jagdlehrer –instructor- to Erg. Gruppe Ost) received the Knight's Cross for his 85 Luftsiege. Promoted to Kapitän of 4./JG 52, he accumulated 40 more victories over Soviet aircraft before fighting in June 1944 in Normandy.

On 12 February Einsatzschwerpunkt for II./JG 52 was still the eastern Crimea. Some 19 claims for enemy fighters downed were filed, including the 250th for the Kommandeur.  

In three sorties on February 26 west of Kirovograd, Lt. Erich Hartmann (Kapitän 9./JG 52) claimed 10 victories, including 5 in an 15-minute period around mid-day and his 200th that afternoon. On March 2, he was awarded the Oak Leaves for 202 victories, including some 24 returned over the previous two months.The weather and ground conditions were poor during this period as Kommandeur III./JG 52 Rall recalled;

"..the endless mud and slush settled into the radiator and undercarriage during taxying and takeoff, so that numerous sorties had to be broken off as the landing gear of our Messerschmitts could not be retracted or else coolant temperatures climbed into the red. We tried to keep taxy times to a minimum by sometimes getting airborne directly from our dispersals. The mud meant that fuel tankers couldn't get to the machines which had to be refuelled from drums taken out by horse-drawn carts. From 8 February even tracked vehicles couldn't get through the morass which meant pilots and crews had to struggle up to five kms through the knee-deep mud on foot to get from our accomodation to the aircraft and back ."

Above;   Summer 1944, Kommodore JG 52 Hrabak's Gustav. Note Erla hood and Kommodore chevron(s)+ bar(s)..(old ebay auction. These and others are published in Teil 15/II).

Also on this blog;

Hrabak and Hartman toast Hartmann's 300th

Compiled from the new Jagdfliegerverbände volume Teil 15/11 'Einsatz im Osten'  1 January -31 December 1944.