Heinkel He 219B-1”Uhu” (Eagle-Owl), 3.-NJG3, (Dragon Models)

TYPE: Night Fighter

ACCOMMODATION: Crew of three

POWER PLANT: Two Junkers Ju 222 liquid-cooled radial engines, rated at 2,500 hp each, resp. two Daimler-Benz DB 603 liquid-cooled engines, rated at 1,900 hp each

PERFORMANCE: 435 mph

COMMENT: The Heinkel He 219 „Uhu“ (Eagle-Owl) was a night-fighter that served with the German Luftwaffe in the later stages of World War II. A relatively sophisticated design, the He 219 possessed a variety of innovations, including Lichtenstein SN-2 advanced VHF-band intercept radar, also used on the Junkers Ju 88G and the Messerschmitt Bf 110G night fighters. It was also the first operational military aircraft to be equipped with ejection seats and the first operational German World War II-era aircraft with tricycle landing gear. Had the „Uhu“ been available in quantity, it might have had a significant effect on the strategic night bombing offensive of the Royal Air Force; however, only 294 of all models were built by the end of the war and these saw only limited service
By the end of 1944, the Luftwaffe had accepted 214 Heinkel He 219As, but during the previous November, the promulgation oft he „Jäger-Notprogramm“ (Fighter Emergency Programme) had sounded death knell for all twin piston-engined fighters with the sole exception of the Dornier Do 335 Pfeil. Ernst Heinkel tacitly ignoring the RLM edict and finalized an assembly line for the fighter at Oranienburg.
Prior to the creation of the „Jäger-Notprogramm“ several variants of the basic He 219 had reached advanced development and even initial production stages.The follow-on series to the He 219As in service was to be the He 219B fitted with the new, but troublesome 2,500 hp Junkers Jumo 222A/B 24 cylinder engines – a multibank, liquid-cooled inline engine, with six rows of cylinder blocks having four cylinders each—which would have allowed the He 219 to reach 440 mph, each of which were almost the same displacement in their A/B (supercharged) and E/F (supercharged with intercoolers) versions and each only very slightly heavier, compared to the Pratt & Whitney R-2800 Double Wasp radial engines in the American Northrop P-61 „Black Widow“ night fighter. The He 219B wing was also to have had an increased span of 22.06 m for better high altitude performance. The Jumo 222 did not reach production status, with just under 300 examples built in at least three differing displacement sizes. Only a few test machines were ever fitted for the engines; some additional airframes were built with the enlarged wing. These examples were slated to fly with high-altitude versions of the standard DB 603 powerplants in place of the troubled Jumo 222 multibank powerplants, but only one or two test machines ever flew with them.
It was proposed to install the Junkers Jumo 222 in a high-altitude three-seat model, the Heinkel He 219B-1, but the non-availability of the Junkers engine necessitated the installation of the Daimler-Benz DB 603Aa in a sole exemple of this variant compleeted and tested. This He 291B-1 had an aerodynamically refined cockpit canopy, a lengthened fuselage, ans an extended wing spanning. Flight testing was cut short when, during the second landing, the starboard undercarriage leg collapsed and the aircraft suffered such intensive damage that it had to be scrapped.
The second B-series, the Heinkel He 219B-2, was intended specifically for anti-Mosquito operations, and was similar in concept of the He 219A-6 in being stripped of virtually all armour.  Employing an He 219A-5 two-seat fuselage married to a long-span B-series wings it was powered by Daimler-Benz DB 603 engines with TK 13 turbo-superchargers, but only few additionaly aircraft of this type were hurriedly completed. These were placed in operationall service with a forward-firing armament ot two 20-mm MG 151 cannon in the wing roots, and  two 30-mm MK 108 cannon  in a „Schräge Musik“ installation.
The Heinkel He 219B-3 was similar to its predesessor apart from the reinstatement of ventral tray armament comprising two 30-mm MK 108 and two 20-mm MG 151 cannon, and this, too, was to have been powered by two Daimler-Benz DB 603L engines, but while still under construction, Heinke received  a directive from the Technischen Amt to await delivery oft he Junkers Jumo 222 engines for installation in this aircraft. In the event, the Junkers power plants never arrived and, in conequence, the He 218B-3 never left the ground (Ref.: 8).

Tachikawa Ki-54b (Army Type 1 Operations Trainer Model B), (Hickory), (A+V Models, Resin)

TYPE: Crew Trainer

ACCOMMODATION: Crew of five to nine

POWER PLANT: Two Hitachi Ha-13a Army Type 98 radial engines, rated at 510 hp each

PERFORMANCE: 234 mph at 6,560 ft

COMMENT: In late 1939, at a request of Koku Hombu, Tachikawa began designing a twin-engined multi-purpose trainer. The aircraft was required to duplicate closely the handling characteristics and performance of the series of modern twin-engined bombers the Army had operated since 1937. It was to be used for the simultaneous training of a complete bomber’s crew including pilot, bombardier, navigator, gunner and radio-operator. To achieve the necessary performance Tachikawa selected a low-wing design with retractable undercarriage and adopted a pair of Hitachi Ha-13a radials with Hamilton-type two blade variable-pitch propellers to power the aircraft.
Designated Tachikawa Ki-54, the first prototype was completed and flown during summer of 1940. Following minor modifications which partially corrected a nose-heavy tendency during landings, the aircraft was placed in production in 1941 as Army Type 1 Advanced Trainer Model A (Ki -54a). Like the prototype, the aircraft of this first production series were primarily designed for pilot training. However, the Ki-54a was soon supplanted by the Ki-54b (Army Type 1 Operations Trainer Model B) which had full provision for bomber crew training and had four gunnery stations each mounting a flexible 7.7 mm Type 89 machine-gun. Operated by all military multi-engined training schools and communications schools as well by civil training schools under Japanese Army contracts, the Ki-54b was built was in  greater numbers than any other variants of the Ki-54.
As a crew trainer and light transport, the Ki-54was one of the most successful Japanese aircraft of the war and was well known to the Allies which named it “Hickory” regardless of the version. The code name “Joyce” was erroneously assigned to a non-existent light bomber version (Ref.: 1).