Messerschmitt Bf 109 F


Model review

This old Frog's Me 109F represents my earlier production from the beginning of the seventies. At the time this Frog's kit represented good quality of the Me 109 model supply. It had also it's own little faults in accuracy and shape which I'm not going to describe but all together it was quite accuracy in shape. The most interesting thing in the model is it's painting scheme which was not actually in use in the Luftwaffe's day fighters in 1941, the time that the model depicts also. According to Frog's painting scheme I painted the upper surfaces of the model in RLM 70 and 71 greens while the lower surfaces got RLM 65 lightblue shade. For a long time this scheme was kept the only "right" scheme for the Luftwaffes day fighters. Nowadays it is well known that the Luftwaffe day fighters had the two grays scheme from the autumn of 1940. In this sceme the upper surfaces were painted in RLM 74 and 75 grays and the lower surfaces had RLM 76 light greyblue tone. The model is painted with a self-made airbrush which was made from a bicycle bumb, two injection needles and a short piece of flexible tube. In that time you couldn't get any ready-made airbrush for modelling from a shop. What a joy painting the mottles to the sides of the model ! Exhaust stains were brushed with charcoal tablet solution. I scartch built the landing gears, propeller blade, tailwheel, antenna mast and some minor parts which had disappeared during the years. This model is one of the most valuable model for me, it was also my first "airbrushed" model.

History

Willy Messerschmitts Bf 109 was the Luftwaffes benchmark fighter throughout the WW II. It was the mount of the vast majority of the German aces and scored more kills than any other aircraft. Maj. Erich Hartmann was the most sucsesful ace with Bf 109 with 352 kills. The top scorer in the world in all times !

The prototype Bf 109V2 won a fighter desing competition declared by the RLM ( Air Ministry ) in 1936 and was chosen to the premier single-engined fighter for the Luftwaffe. The first production plane Bf 109B-1 flew in July 1937. In 1938 C and D models were introduced, they had Junkers Jumo 210 engine as the B-model also did, but the latest versions of it. The first plane in E-series with the new Daimler-Benz DB 600-series engine (1100 hp) and with 3-bladed variable-pitch propeller came in production in the end of 1938. It was armed with two fuselage mounted machine guns and two wing mounted cannons and it became the main fighter of the Luftwaffe for the first few years of the war.

The Bf 109B, C, D and E versions already took part in the Spanish Civil War. By the beginning of the WW2 the Luftwaffe had already equipped all fighter units ( Jagdgeswader ) with the Bf 109E (Emil) planes. The great test for the Me Bf 109E and for the Luftwaffe was the Battle of Britain in July-September 1940. The Bf 109E proved to be better fighter than the Hawker Hurricane and it was approximately as good as the Supermarine Spitfire. The worse agility was compensated by better climbing rate and better reliability of the engine wich had direct injection fuel system and had no problems with negative G-forces. The vast majority of the 1172 planes that RAF's Fighter Command lost during the battle were victims of the Bf 109E. Luftwaffe lost 1792 planes of which 610 were Bf 109E-type.

After the Bf 109E the next main version during 1941 - 42 was the Bf 109F "Friedrich". It was totally new plane, only the rear fuselage had kept without chances. Friedrich was the main fighter type of the Luftwaffe when the German army attacked to Soviet Union in the summer of 1941. In the late summer of 1942 the Bf 109G "Gustav" was introduced in service. It had many subtypes and it was the most produced version of the Bf 109. It was the backbone of the Luftwaffe to the end of the war. The last of the Bf 109 series was Bf 109 K "Kurt", which was an attempt to standardize too many subtypes of the Bf 109 G and to get out the last potential of the Bf 109 consept.

The model depicts the "Yellow10" which belonged to 9./ JG 2 in the summer of 1941 when the Staffeln was situated in France.

Messerschmitt Bf 109 F-3 technical data

Engine 1300 hp Daimler-Benz DB 601 E
Dimensions Span 9,92 m; lenght 9,02 m
Weights Max. take off 2746 kg; empty 1964 kg
Performance Max. speed 628 km/h (6710 m); climb speed 1012 m/s
Armament Fixed armament 1 x 15 mm MG151, 2 x 7,9 mm MG17 mg
Service time 1941 - 1942
Production 30573 (all Me 109 versions)

Sources
Lentäjän näkökulma II, Jukka Raunio; Länsirintaman Bf 109F/G/K ässät, John Weal ;Internet

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