Tamiya Focke-Wulf 190A-2 of Oberleutnant Egon Mayer in 1/72 Scale

Egon Mayer fought entirely in the West.  He was credited with his first victory, an MS 406, during the Battle of France.  His JG 2 “Richthofen” fought in the Battle of Britain and remained on the Channel Front.  Mayer scored steadily against the RAF, and was awarded the Knight’s Cross in August 1941 after his 21st victory.

As the American presence grew, Mayer was promoted to Hauptman and commanded III./JG 2 as Gruppenkommandeur.  He identified the nose armament of the American heavies as a defensive weak point, and developed the head-on attack which became the preferred Luftwaffe interception tactic.  On 23NOV42 he was credited with two B-17’s and a B-24 using these tactics.

On 01JUL43 Meyer was appointed Geschwaderkommodore of JG 2.  He continued to lead his pilots on interceptions of American heavy bomber raids and was able to score consistently.  On 02MAR44 he was leading an attack on a B-17 formation when he was shot down and killed by an escorting P-47.  His final tally reached a total of 102, and included 51 Spitfires and 26 heavy bombers.

The model represents the Fw 190A-2 of Oberleutnant Egon Mayer of 7./ JG 2, at  Theville France, June 1942.

Fine Molds Messerschmitt Bf 109F-4 of Oberleutnant Erich Rudorffer in 1/72 Scale

Erich Rudorffer served throughout WWII on every front where the Luftwaffe was engaged.  He downed A French Hawk 75 for his first victory in May, 1940 and his last flying the Me 262.  He fought against the Western Allies until June 1943 when he was transferred to the East as Gruppenkommandeur of IV./ JG 54.  He made the transition successfully and scored heavily against the Soviets.  He was credited with thirteen kills in one day on 06NOV43, all Soviet fighters.

In all, Rudorffer was credited with 222 victories, 136 in the East, 26 in North Africa, and 60 in the West (including 10 heavy bombers) and 12 on the Me 262.  He was himself shot down 16 times, taking to his parachute on 9 occasions.  He survived the war, and passed away in 2016 at the age of 98.

The model represents Rudorffer’s Bf 109F-4 of 6. / JG2 in France, September 1941.

Hasegawa Focke-Wulf 190A-5 of Oberleutnant Max Stotz in 1/72 Scale

Max Stotz began his aviation career in 1935 in the Austrian Air Force, and continued on in the Luftwaffe after the Anschluss, Germany’s annexation of Austria.  He scored his first aerial victory, an RAF Blenheim on 05NOV39.   He continued to score against the British and French during the Battle of France.  His unit was transferred to support the invasion of Yugoslavia, but he didn’t add to his tally again until the invasion of Russia.

Stotz continued to add to his score while flying against the Soviets, being awarded the Oak Leaves for his 100th victory on 30OCT42.  One month later he was credited with ten victories in a single day.  His luck ran out on 19AUG43 when he was shot down by a Yak-9.  He successfully took to his parachute but came down in Soviet territory and was not seen again.  He was credited with a total of 189 victories.

The model depicts Stotz’ Fw 190A-5 of 5. / JG54, Russia, Spring 1943 in a field-applied camouflage.  I interpreted the upper surface colors as being 02 / 79 / 70 / 83 based upon what I saw in the photograph, my best guess.

Tamiya Messerschmitt Bf 109E-4 of Oberleutnant Friedrich-Karl Müller in 1/72 Scale

Friedrich-Karl “Tutti” Müller claimed his first victory, a French Curtiss Hawk during the Dunkirk evacuation in May, 1940.  His score improved to ten during the Battle of Britain, but he was forced down into the English Channel due to fuel exhaustion.

Müller served in all the major theaters where the Luftwaffe was engaged.  He claimed 89 victories against the Soviets and 51 against the Western Allies, including 24 heavy bombers, for a total of 140.  He was killed on 29MAY44 when his Bf 109G stalled while coming in for a landing.

The model represents Müller’s Messerschmitt Bf 109E-4 in the markings of Stab III./JG 53 in October 1940.

Hasegawa Focke-Wulf 190A-5 of Leutnant Josef Wurmheller in 1/72 Scale

Josef “Sepp” Wurmheller opened his account during the “Phoney War”, a Fairey Battle on 30SEP39.  His fortunes were mixed during the Battle of Britain, where he claimed four further victories but was shot down himself on three occasions.  His most successful day was during the Dieppe Raid on 19AUG42, when he was credited with seven victories over four sorties.

The majority of Wurmheller’s victories were scored in the West, 93 in all including 56 Spitfires and 21 four-motor bombers.  He was briefly deployed to the East where he added 9 Soviet aircraft to his total.  He was dogfighting with Allied fighters on 22JUN44 when he collided with his wingman, both German pilots were killed.  Josef Wurmheller’s final score was 103.

The model represents the Fw 190A-5 of Josef Wurmheller while assigned to  9. / JG2, France, July 1943.

Tamiya Messerschmitt Bf 109E-4 of Major Adolf Galland, Stab/JG 26 in 1/72 Scale

Adolf Galland flew ground attack missions in He 51’s with the Condor Legion during the Spanish Civil War, and in Hs 123’s during the invasion of Poland.  Both of these were biplane types, but Galland repeatedly made requests to be assigned to fighters.  He was able to arrange a transfer to JG 27, then flying the Bf 109E, and was seconded for a time to JG 53 where he was tutored in fighter tactics by Werner Mölders.  Galland claimed his first aerial victories, a pair of RAF Hurricanes on 12MAY40, and added a third on a later sortie that day.

Galland’s success continued, and he was appointed Gruppenkommandeur of III./JG 26 in June, rising to command the entire Geschwader in August.  In September, he was awarded the Oak Leaves after achieving his 40th victory.  During October he claimed a further eight victories, all fighters, which brought his total to 50.

The model depicts the Bf 109E-4 of Major Adolf Galland while Geschwaderkommandeur of JG 26 at Audembert, France, in October, 1940.

Hasegawa Focke-Wulf 190A-8 of Major Franz Eisenach in 1/72 Scale

Franz Eisenach scored his first victory on 08NOV42, a Russian-flown P-40.  He continued to score steadily, his best day was on 14SEP44, when he claimed five Il-2 Sturmoviks and four Pe-2s.  He was wounded seriously enough to require hospitalization on three occasions – once while crash landing after being shot down by Russian fighters, another bailing out wounded after his aircraft was hit by flak, and lastly after being injured during a bombing raid on his airfield.  Eisenach survived the war, and was credited with a total of 129 victories, all in the East. The model depicts the Fw 190A-8 of Major Franz Eisenach, Gruppenkommandeur of I. / JG54, at Schrunden, Courland, November 1944.

Hasegawa Focke-Wulf 190A-8 of Oberst Walther Dahl in 1/72 Scale

Walther Dahl claimed his first victory on the opening day of Operation Barbarossa, the German invasion of the Soviet Union.  He continued to score against the Soviets, his total reaching 51 victories by July 1943, when he was assigned to the West as Gruppenkommandeur of III./JG 3.  He successfully made the transition from East to West, although he was shot down by RAF Spitfires on 17AUG43 had had to make a belly landing in his Bf 109.  The Luftwaffe became more and more desperate to stem the flow of Allied bombers, and Dahl took command of JG 300 in June, 1944.  JG 300 was formed as a special unit whose pilots were to close in on American bomber formations to point-blank range, ramming their targets if necessary.  While these tactics were sometimes successful, they were also costly to the Luftwaffe, especially if Allied escort fighters were present.  Dahl was one of several prominent Jagdflieger who locked horns with Reichsmarschall Hermann Göring, being relieved of command on 30NOV44 for refusing Göring’s order to intercept an American raid in poor weather, only the intervention of Adolf Galland preventing his court martial.  Dahl was quickly reinstated and promoted, and continued to fly combat missions until the end of the war.  He was credited with his last victory, a P-51 Mustang on 26APR45, bringing his total to 128.

The model depicts Dahl’s Fw 190A-8 of Stab /JG 300, at Jüterbog, Germany, December 1944.

Fine Molds Messerschmitt Bf 109F-2 of Leutnant Max-Hellmuth Ostermann in 1/72 Scale

Max-Hellmuth Ostermann began the war flying the Bf 110 twin-engine fighter with ZG 1 during the Invasion of Poland.  He transferred to JG 21 flying the Bf 109 in time for the Battle of France, where he scored his first victory, a Morane-Saulnier M.S.406 on 20MAY40.  By the close of the Battle of Britain he had achieved eight victories.

Ostermann continued to score against the Soviets from the start of Operation Barbarossa, being awarded the Knight’s Cross at the beginning of September 1941 for 29 victories.  His score had risen to 70 by February 1942, when he was granted leave to get married.  Because of his small build and youthful appearance, he was briefly arrested for impersonating a Luftwaffe Officer on his wedding day.

He achieved his 100th victory on 12MAY42 but was wounded in the engagement.  He was presented with the Swords while recuperating.  Ostermann was shot down and killed on 09AUG42 by Arkady Ivanovich Sukov flying a LaGG-3.  His final score was 102. Max-Hellmuth Ostermann’s Bf 109F-2, 7. / JG54 at Dno, Russia, September 1941


Fine Molds Messerschmitt Bf 109F-4 of Erich Leie in 1/72 Scale

This is Erich Leie’s Bf 109F-4 assigned to Stab / JG2 at St. Pol-Brias, France during the Summer of 1941.  His best day was on 23JUL41 when he claimed six Spitfires.   He was eventually credited with 118 victories (some sources say 122) and over 500 combat sorties.  He survived through most of the war, but was killed on 07MAR45 when he collided with a Yak-9 which he had just shot down.