Mistel 1 Composite in 1/72 Scale

The Mistel (German for mistletoe) was a series of composite aircraft developed by Germany during the Second World War.  They were composed of an unmanned Junkers Ju 88 bomber aircraft fitted with a two-ton shaped charge explosive warhead which was to be guided to the target area by an attached fighter, usually a Messerschmitt Bf-109 or Focke-Wulf Fw 190.  When within a few miles of the target, the pilot would separate the fighter, leaving the bomber component to fly on autopilot to impact the objective.  The lower components were intended to be drawn from “timed out” or “war weary” bombers which were utilized past their useful combat lives, but as Germany focused on increasing fighter production and operations more newer bomber airframes became available.  The Mistel can be thought of as one of the first attempts at developing a cruise missile.

This is one of my first efforts at modeling a Mistel, with an aircraft combination photographed at Burg in 1944 as my subject.  The upper component is the excellent Fine Molds Messerschmitt Bf 109F, the lower component an AMT Ju 88.  Subsequently Revell of Germany and Hasegawa released superior Ju 88 kits which are both more accurate and better detailed, the Revell kit being the better of the two in my estimation, and cheaper as well.