During a Flory Models live show (video below) I had a question on cockpit colours.
When it comes to giving an answer on what was the colour of a Bf 110 cockpit I wanted to be 110% sure (and the pun was unintentional) It's when I'm on the spot, that self-doubt kicks in. Around the 1 hour 50 mark you'll see me digging through references trying to find a definitive quick answer. The question that started it all was "Question for the Lutwaffe expert. I am building the 1/48 Eduard bf110F. I used RLM02 (1941 version) for the back cockit and wheel wells. I am making an error?"
In queries that followed the live show, an image was sent to me that seems to have started it all. This image has been nicely colorised elsewhere on the internet; but there is no doubt that the cockpit sides and framing are much lighter than the instrument panel. This aircraft was definitely painted in RLM 02 with an RLM 66 instrument panel. Digging an little deeper this image was taken in November 1940.
Another image shown below, dated 1939 again confirm that the cockpits were painted RLM 02. Note the contrast between the instruments and parts of the interior that is not in shadow.
Moving forward into Russia in 1941 we have a picture that, once confirms RLM o2. What this picture can't tell us is how old the aircraft was at the time of the photograph. Was it a Battle of Britain era aircraft redeployed to the Eastern front?
The final image is from 1943. The framing appears much darker than the fabric curtain and the crew members parachute straps.
The generally accepted view from references is that in the 1941 regulation L.Dv 521/1 stated "RLM 66 was specified for painting all areas visible through cockpit and canopy glazing" (AK Real Colors of WWII page 90).
This is confirmed by my preferred reference book, "The November 1941 issue of L.Dv.521/1....All cockpit areas visible through a glazed covering were to be finished in 7107.66, principally as an anti-glare measure, but also as not to compromise the external camouflage finish" (Luftwaffe Camouflage and Markings 1933-1945, Merrick & Kiroff page 207).
So where does that leave a Bf 110 in 1941?I've two thoughts, the change in regulations came out at the end fo 1941 so it is possible that the cockpit was partially painted in RLM 02. Another view is that LDv.521/1 was confirming what was already general practice so the cockpit could have been RLM 66 throughout. I'd personally be tempted to paint the front cockpit RLM 66 and the rear RLM 02, it is visually more interesting and the aircraft was probably manufactured prior to the RLM 66 regulation.
I'd like to finish off with a generally accepted rule. If an aircraft is from after the Battle of Britain its cockpit was probably RLM 66.
The South Cheshire Militaire in Nantwich has firmly established itself as a personal favourite. It is a show that has that certain charm that is unique. It's a friendly show with a wide range of displays that differentiate it from the others shows on the scale model calender.
There were several new models on the display from myself (Hasegawa 109E and L 11 Schneewittchen) Andy Molyneaux (Great Wall Hobby Fw-189) and Rick Greenwood (1/72 Tamiya 109G6). `Rick's build was featured in Scale Aircraft Modelling Volume 41, Issue 05.
Moving on from the new builds, here are some pictures of the rest of our display.
Luftwaffe subjects remain popular on other tables too.
And the wrap things up, here are some photographs of the venue and some of the varied displays.
The first show of the decade got the 2020 show season off to a flying start (pardon the pun). Sat between the EE Lightning and Panavia Tornado SIG and alongside IPMS Cleveland we were amongst friends and great company.
The SIG's display was a general theme, covering as we do all aspect of German military aviation. The highlight of the show for me was finding a Ju-52 tail wheel that got lost at SMW 2019!
The Bolton show has cemented its position as one of my favourite shows. The day went by so quick that I didn't have a chance to catch up with everyone. I did manage to pick up a few Airfix kits (Do-17, He-111 and BF110) that will be added to the display in time.
A huge thanks must go out to all the SIG members who add their builds to the display. Here are a few photographs:
We’ve yet to start on our 2020 theme, WW1 builds will start soon. The SIG has signed up to support the IPMS Battle of Britain SIG 'Big Display' at SMW 2020, so if you have a Battle of Britain build on the bench let me know.
As ever, German subjects prove to be popular on other displays; these are a few that caught my eye. That's all from Bolton. As a final note, the Scale Model Shed chaps have persuaded me that Southwell is a show that I should consider adding to the calendar. I shall make some enquiries.
One more thing: thanks to our host for putting on another great display. I hope the pictures below will give some sort of impression of the hard work that IPMS Bolton put into turning an empty room into a model show.
Issue 4 of the Eagle is ready!
Inside this bumper issues are articles on the Eurofighter, 1945 and SMW 2019,
Today I made a visit to the SIG's sponsor, PM Models on one of their monthly open days. You'll find a shop well stocked with paints models tools and kits and there were two demonstrations by Phil Flory which focused on weathering using oil paints. A visit is highly recommended, especially on the open day which usually takes place on the first Saturday of the month.
You can keep up-to-date with new arrivals and announcements on their Facebook and Instagram pages.
If you haven't seen Plane Savers on Youtube, you've really missed out. Series 1 saw 'DTD" a D-Day veteran DC-3 return to the skies. Series Two is going to be of interest to anyone who is keen on WW1 aviation.
On a Flory Models live show I was asked about markings for Zwilling (the latest Hasegawa release include what-if bomber markings). Researching 12 air frames should be easy: sadly that isn't the case.
I looked at a couple of different sources and came away with a slightly different picture. I've included what I've found in a spreadsheet below. I've added details about the marking options included in the Italeri and earlier Hasegawa kits too.
Incidentally, the two sources of information were:
Griehl, M. and Klein, A. (2012). Die späten Varianten H-6 bis H-20 und Z =. Erlangen: AirDOC.
Theres more work to do. I've included an editable Microsoft Excel file for anyone who might have more time or reference materials.
The third issue of The Eagle is ready.
The main feature is some reference materials on the Lockheed Starfighter. For people who don’t follow us on Facebook, there is also an series of photo galleries showing the SIGs displays since Bolton at the start of 2019.
Issue two focuses on the Luftwaffe's response to D-Day. It is not to diminish the efforts and ultimate sacrifices made by Allied force but I felt it appropriate to recognise the role and sacrifice that the men of the Luftwaffe made. On the 75th anniversary the SIG would like to give thanks to all the Allied forces that made the liberty that we enjoy today possible. Lest We Forget.
I'd like to finish with a quote from The Right Honourable Theresa May MP, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom who delivered a poignant speech this morning in France.
"Here in Normandy, the names of those British men and women who lost their lives will forever sit across The Channel from their homeland. We'll always remember their courage and conviction. And to the veterans that are here today - I want to say the only two words I can: Thank you."
The German Military Aviation
Special Interest Group
The Luftwaffe SIG Newsletter online edition written by SIG Leader Nathan Robinson.