Category Archives: Fighter

Fighter

Focke-Wulf Ta 152C-0 (Academy)

TYPE: Medium-altitude fighter and fighter-bomber

ACCOMMODATION: Pilot only

POWER PLANT: One Daimler-Benz DB 603LA liquid-cooled engine, rated at 2,300 hp (with MW 50)

PERFORMANCE: 460 mph at 32,810 ft

COMMENT: By autumn 1942, it was obvious that despite earlier opinions, the USAAF had every intension of building up an immense bomber force in Britain for use against Germany, mainly Boeing B-17 “Flying Fortress” and Consolidated B-24 “Liberator”. Furthermore, intelligence reports revealed that tremendous impetus was being placed behind the mass production of a larger, pressurized successor, the Boeing B-29 “Superfortress”, capable of operations at still greater speeds and altitudes. Thus, the development of fighters possessing higher combat ceilings had assumed greater urgency. Both Focke-Wulf and Messerschmitt were, therefore, asked to submit their proposals for a “Hochhleistungsjäger” (High-performance fighter), offering a substantially improved combat ceiling and amenable to adaption for a medium-to-high altitude reconnaissance-fighter role. To meet the requirements Focke-Wulf proposed the Fw 190Ra-2 and Ra-3, a variant based on the Fw 190D, and Messerschmitt offered a long-span derivative of the Me 109, the Me 155B. These submissions were accepted by the “Technische Amt” (Technical Office of the RLM) but in August 1943 it became clear that Messerschmitt was too committed with other development programmes to devote sufficient attention to the Me 155B, this being duly passed to Blohm & Voss.
Prof. Tank, director of Focke-Wulf’s design team, worked on his proposals Fw 190Ra-2 and Ra-3 that soon would receive the RLM type designations Ta 152H and Ta 152K, respectively. Tank envisaged the short-span variant as primarily a “Begleitjäger” (Escort fighter), and the long-span version as a “Höhenjäger” (High-altitude fighter). Furthermore, Tank pressed for permission to install the turbo-charged Daimler-Benz DB 603 engine in the Ta 152 fighter owing to its indisputable superiority to the Junkers Jumo 213E engine, installed in the Focke-Wulf Fw 190D, at high altitudes. The short-span Fw Ta 152C, as it was designated now, was broadly of similar aerodynamic concept to that of the Fw 190D, but was structurally an entirely new airframe. Although test flights showed excellent handling characteristics and performance and although a production order was placed in autumn 1944 the General-Luftzeugmeister Amt (Department of the Chief of Aircraft Procurement and Supply) decided on November 1944 that the highest priority had been given to four key warplanes, the Heinkel He 162, the Messerschmitt Me 262, the Arado Ar 234, and the Dornier Do 335. So all work on the Ta 152 was stopped (Ref.: 7).

Focke-Wulf Fw 190D-9, “Dora 9” (Dragon)

TYPE: Interceptor and fighter-bomber

ACCOMMODATION: Pilot only

POWER PLANT: One Junkers Jumo 213A-1 liquid-cooled engine, rated at 2,240 hp (with MW 50)

PERFORMANCE: 426 mph at 21,653 ft

COMMENT: The Focke-Wulf Fw 190, perhaps the most successful of Germany’s wartime fighters, was subjected to continuous development in order to keep pace with the rapidly changing requirements of the air war. Before the type had entered wide-spread service in its initial form work on adapting the basic frame to take liquid-cooled engines and improving the high-altitude capabilities was being undertaken by the Focke-Wulf design team, led by Prof. K. Tank. Work on three high-altitude interceptor variants powered by liquid-cooled engines was inaugurated almost simultaneously. The first of these was the Fw 190B with the Daimler-Benz DB 603 engine, this being followed by the similarly powered Fw 190C which featured an extended wing spanning, and the Fw 190Dm powered by the Junkers Jumo 213. The last-mentioned type proved easily most effective of the trio, development of the B- and C-series eventually being abandoned in its favour. The first prototypes began flight trial in early 1942 and shows spectacular performance. Small batches of pre-production Fw 190D-0’s and production Fw 190D-1 for service evaluation were delivered and tested during summer 1943. The Fw 190D-1 was not manufactured in large numbers, the first major production model being the Fw 190D-9 (nicknamed “Dora”; or “Langnasen-Dora” (“Long-Nose Dora). For some unexplained reasons no sub-series suffix numerals between D-1 and D-9 were allocated, and the Fw 190D-9 was the only D-series fighter intended solely for the interception role. While these “long nose” versions gave them parity with Allied opponents, it arrived far too late in the war to have any real effect. The early production Fw 190D-9 shown here is fitted with original style cockpit canopy, most “Dora-9” fighters having a blown hood (Ref.: 11).

Messerschmitt Me P.1110 “Ente” (“Duck“) (Classic Plane, Resin)

TYPE:  High-altitude interceptor. Project

ACCOMMODATION: Pilot only

POWER PLANT: One Heinkel-Hirth HeS 011 turbojet engine, rated at 1,300 kp

PERFORMANCE: 631 mph

COMMENT: The Messerschmitt Me. P.1110 “Ente” (“Duck”) was the third variant of the Me P. 1110 projects proposed for the “Jägernotprogramm” (Emergency Fighter Program). It was of canard configuration with small wings in the front and larger wings in the rear part of the fuselage. This was felt would allow good pitch and lateral stability at low-speed flight characteristics. The air intakes were located on the fuselage sides like in the Me P.1110/I.  The cockpit was located at the nose end of the plane and the wings had a 40° wing sweep back. Projected maximum speed was 631 mph. As with the other two Messerschmitt Me P.1110 designs the project would be soon dropped in favor of the Junkers EF 128 (Ref.: 17)

Messerschmitt Me P.1110/I (Planet, Resin) with Kramer X-4 (Scratch-built)

TYPE: High altitude interceptor. Project

ACCOMMODATION: Pilot only

POWER PLANT: One Heinkel-Hirth HeS 011 turbojet engine, rated at 1,300 kp

PERFORMANCE: 621 mph

COMMENT: As part of the “Jägernotprogramm” (“Emergency Fighter Program”) at the beginning of 1945 a program was launched by the OKL for a new generation of fighter/interceptor aircraft in order to replace the Heinkel He 162 “Salamander” or “Volksjäger” (“Peoples fighter” as called by the authorities). The new aircraft was intended to have superior performance in order to deal with high-altitude threats such as the Boeing B-29 “Superfortress”. Messerschmitt designed three different single-seated, high-altitude fighter projects which were submitted in February 1945. One of the designs of the Messerschmitt Me P.1110 series was a turbo-jet powered interceptor with a conventional-looking design with the air intakes located on the fuselage sides (“Rampen-Einlauf”, “Ramp-air-intake”). The wings were swept-back at 40 degrees, as well as the tail-plane. Power was provided by a single Heinkel HeS 011 turbojet engine, projected maximum speed was 621 mph. The project would be soon dropped in favor of the Junkers EF 128 and none of the Messerschmitt designs made it to the prototype stage (Ref.: 17).

Focke-Wulf Ta 152H-0 (Academy)

TYPE: High-altitude fighter-interceptor

ACCOMMODATION: Pilot only in pressurized cockpit

POWER PLANT: One Junkers Jumo 213E liquid-cooled inverted V-12 inline engine, rated at 2,250 hp with MW-50 injection

PERFORMANCE: 472 mph at 41,000 ft using GM-1 boost

COMMENT: The superb qualities of the Focke-Wulf Fw 190D fighter did not go unrecognized by the RLM, who rewarded Prof. Kurt Tank, primarily responsible for its design, by permitting him to employ the prefix “Ta” (indicating “Tank”) in place of Fw (Focke-Wulf) for designating of designs produced by his team. Tank took the opportunity provided by the incorporation of some modifications in the Fw 190D design to apply the designation Ta 152 for a modified fighter. Initially there were relatively few differences between the Fw 190D and the Ta 152. The Junkers Jumo 213C engine was similar to the Fw 190D-9’s Jumo 213A but made provision for a 30-mm engine mounted MK 108 cannon which augmented the twin 20-mm MG 151s and the twin 13-mm MG 131s. It was intended to be made in at least three versions – the Ta 152H “Höhenjäger” (“high-altitude fighter”), the Ta 152C designed for medium-altitude operations and ground-attack using a different engine and smaller wing, and the Ta 152E fighter-reconnaissance aircraft with the engine of the H model and the wing of the C model. About 20 Ta 152H-0 were ordered and the first aircraft entered service with the Luftwaffe in January 1945. These were too few and too late to allow the Ta 152 to make a significant impact on the air war(Ref. 11).

Messerschmitt Me P.1104/II (A+V-Models, Resin)

TYPE: Short-range interceptor. Project

ACCOMMODATION: Pilot only

POWER PLANT: One Walter HWK 509A-2 liquid-fueled rocket, rated at 1,700 kp

PERFORMANCE: 503 mph

COMMENT:  In mid 1944 the RLM called for proposals of a small, cheap, easy to build, reusable short-range, high speed interceptor in the context of the ‘Miniaturjägerprogramm’ (Miniature fighter program).  Aircraft companies such as Bachem,  Focke-Wulf, Heinkel, Junkers and Messerschmitt submitted proposals: Bachem Ba 349 ‘Natter’ (‘Grass Snake’), Focke-Wulf Fw ‘Volksjäger’, (‘People Fighter’), Heinkel He P.1077 ‘Julia’, Junkers EF 126 ‘Lilli’, Junkers EF 127 ‘Walli’ and Messerschmitt the designs Me P.1103 and Me P.1104, each in several variants. The Messerschmitt Me P.1104/II design was a simple wooden construction with a cylindrical fuselage, the wings were shoulder-mounted and un-swept so as the tail-plane. Power was provided by a Walter HWK 509A-2 liquid-fuel rocket engine with a main combustion chamber of 1.700 kp thrust and a smaller cruising chamber of 300 kp thrust. The pilot was in a conventional seated position, the armament consisted of one single MK 108 30 mm cannon beneath the cockpit.  For take-off the fighter was positioned on a trolley so as the Messerschmitt Me 163 ‘Komet (‘Comet’) that was jettisoned when the aircraft was airborne. The tiny plane was towed by a Messerschmitt Me 109G or Messerschmitt Me 262A-1 towards the enemy, released when in attack position and ignited the rocket motor. After attack the aircraft glided back to its base and landed on retractable skids. As with projects of other companies all work was cancelled in favour of the Bachem Ba 349 ‘Natter’ (Ref.: 17, 20)

Messerschmitt Me 262C-3a ‘Heimatschützer IV’, (Home Protector IV’) (Revell, Parts scratch-built)

TYPE: Interception fighter

ACCOMMODATION: Pilot only

POWER PLANT: Two Junkers Jumo 004C turbojet engines, rated at 980 kp each and one Walter HWK 509S-2 liquid-fueled rocket engine, rated at 1,700 kp

PERFORMANCE: 510 mph at 32,800 ft

COMMENT: The major disadvantage displayed by the ‘Heimatschützer I’ had been the strict limitation imposed on J2 tankage (for the Jumo 004 turbojet engines) by the internally mounted rocket motor, and the need to use some of the available tankage for its propellants. The Messerschmitt Me 262C-3a ‘Heimatschützer IV’, therefore, had a Walter R II-211/§ rocket motor slung beneath the fuselage with ‘C-Stoff’  and ‘T-Stoff’ tanks  mounted on modified bomb carriers immediately ahead of the power plant. The rocket motor was jettisonable, and was to be dropped by parachute after the fuel had been consumed. Fuel was fed to the power plant by means of a flexible line, but difficulties were encountered with the fuel feed as a level of tanks was slightly below that of rocket combustion chamber, and these had not been resolved when further work on the Messerschmitt Me 262C-3a ‘Heimatschützer IV’ terminated.
Another ‘Heimatschützer’, the Messerschmitt Me 262C-3 ‘Heimatschützer III’ was a proposed version of the basic Me 262A-1a with Junkers Jumo 004 turbojet engines replaced with Walter HWK RII-211 liquid-fueled rocket engines (Ref.: 7).

Messerschmitt Me P. 1103/III (A+V Models, Resin)

TYPE: Short-range interceptor. Project

ACCOMMODATION: Pilot only

POWER PLANT: One Walter HKW 509A-1 liquid-fueled rocket, rated at 1,600 kp

PERFORMANCE: 435 mph

COMMENT: In 1944, according to the RLM’s ‘Miniaturjägerprogramm’ (Miniature fighter program) the Messerschmitt Me P.1103/III was designed as a small, cheap, easy to build, short-range, high speed interceptor fighter. Competitors were Focke-Wulf Fw ‘Volksjäger’, Junkers EF 126 ‘Lilli’, Junkers EF 127 ’Walli’ and Bachem Ba 349 ‘Natter’. Construction was to be simple, the airframe mainly built from wood. The wings were mid-mounted and un-swept so as the tail-plane. For take-off the fighter set on a simple pair of wheels and a front skid. Both were jettisoned when the aircraft was airborne. The tiny plane was towed by a Messerschmitt Me 109G or Messerschmitt Me 262A-1 towards the enemy, released when in right position and ignited the rocket motor. After attack the aircraft glided back to its base and landed on retractable skids. All design work was cancelled in favour of the Bachem Ba 349 ‘Natter’ (Ref.: 17).

Messerschmitt Me 262C-2b ‘Heimatschützer II’ (‘Home Protector II’), (Revell, Parts scratch-built)

TYPE: Interceptor fighter

ACCOMMODATION: Pilot only

POWER PLANT: Two BMW 003R units, each of which comprised a BMW 003A turbojet engine, rated 800 kp and a BMW 718 bi-fuel rocket motor rated at 1.230 kp

PERFORMANCE: 510 mph at 32,800 ft

COMMENT: The second rocket-boosted development, the Messerschmitt Me 262C-2b ‘Heimatschützer II’ (‘Home Protector II’), also converted from a Messerschmitt Me 262A-1a, made its sole test flight in March 1945. The Me 262C-2b was powered by two BMW 003R units each of which comprised a BMW 003A turbojet and a BMW 718 liquid-fuel rocket motor. The arrangement of the fuel tanks was similar to that of the Messerschmitt Me 262C-1a except that “S-Stoff’ occupied the forward main tank and ‘R-Stoff’ was housed by the aft auxiliary tank. The BMW 718 rocket motor was highly temperamental, and although some 50 bench runs were made with the complete BMW 003R unit, on several occasions the rocket component blew up and burned fiercely. Only one flight with the sole Messerschmitt Me 262C-2a ‘Heimatschützer II’ under full power was made. Further work concentrated on the Messerschmitt Me 262C-3b ‘Heimatschützer IV’. However, the aircraft shown here could be attached to the ISS 1 (Industrie Schutz Staffel 1 (Industry Protection Squadron) —- assumed of serial production (Ref.: 7).

Messerschmitt Me 262C-1a ‘Heimatschützer I’ (’Home Protector I’), (Matchbox, parts scratch-built)

TYPE: Interceptor fighter

ACCOMMODATION: Pilot only

POWER PLANT: Two Junkers Jumo 004C-1 turbojet engines, rated at 980 kp and one Walter HWK 509A-1 liquid-fueled rocket engine, rated at 1,600 kp

PERFORMANCE: 535 mph at 26,250 ft

COMMENT: Early in 1945, considerable importance was attached to the rapid development of rocket-boosted ‘Heimatschützer’ (‘Home Protector’) versions of the Messerschmitt Me 262 capable of climbing to intercept altitude with extreme rapidity. The first of these, the Messerschmitt Me 262C-1a ‘Heimatschützer I’ converted from a Me 262A-1a, was flown for the first time on February 27, 1945. The Me 262C-1a had a Walter bi-fuel rocket motor mounted in the extreme rear of the fuselage. Tanks for the ‘T-Stoff’ and ‘C-Stoff’ for the rocket engine and the fuel tanks for the turbojet engines were located in the fuselage. Although the rocket motor did reduce the take-off run of the Me 262C-1a, its primary function was to boost climb rate. Once started the rocket motor provided full power for three minutes which was sufficient to push the Me 262C-1a to an altitude of 26,250 ft. From a standing start an altitude of 38,400 ft could be reached in 4.5 min. Four flight tests were completed before development of this ‘Heimatschützer’ was discarded in favor of the Messerschmitt Me 262C-3 ‘Heimatschützer IV’. One Messerschmitt Me 262C-1a only was built, but the aircraft shown here could be attached to the JV 44 (Jagd Verband, Pursuit Unit) —- assumed of serial production (Ref.:  7).