Sunday, 31 May 2015

Me 110 G-2 "8V + ON" 5./NJG 200 Josef Kociok, Eastern Front Nachtjagd - Daily Luftwaffe Ebay photo find #119

" Sepp's bird " - Me 110 G-2 "8V + ON" der 5./NJG 200 von Flugzeugführer Ofw. Josef Kociok

Kociok was awarded the RK for 27 victories (15 by night) on 31 July 1943, the presentation taking place in Bagerowo in the Crimea. 5./ NJG 200 renamed from 10. (NJ)/ ZG 1 during August 1943. Kociok was KIA during the night of 26/27 September 1943 after colliding with a Soviet bomber he was attempting to bring down. Both Kociok and his BF Fw. Wegerhoff bailed out - Kociok's chute failed to open (Bf 110 G-2 WNr. 6392). Kociok tallied some 33 victories in the East in the course of around 200 combat sorties, 21 at night.

rare pic of Kociok in 7./ ZG 77 in Norway during late 1940.  More on Kociok on this blog here

Michael Meyer's current Ebay sales are here

Friday, 29 May 2015

photo album JG 107 Nancy - Ochey - pilot training in the Luftwaffe Ebay photo find #118

currently at 116 euros with nine days left to view the full image large

" after the campaign in Russia and being wounded for a third time with a spell in the field hospital in Siedlce (Poland),  convalescence. Then to flight training-  'Fliegerei' I am in my first flight suit.."

Below; C 445 A/B 3 Guben

scenes from I./ JG 107 in Nancy-Ochey

Below; " he wasn't the only one..but he was one of my best friends.."

"... after a mid-air collision.."

" ..This B-17 - the so-called 'Flying Fortress '- was shot down near Nancy and made an emergency landing. It was repaired and made flight worthy on the airfield. But we are so tiny next to these machines and it takes a brave pilot to take them on in combat.."

Werner Seiffert, KIA 25 August 1944

" ..April/May/June 1944 at Marseille-Marignac - the Yanks often come down the Rhone valley and we fly our first sorties as fighter pilots. I'm still in training, but now as an instructor (Fluglehrer) I am climbing out of my crate....the nasty number '7' ..."

On offer here

some unusual camouflage schemes on Heinkel He 111 bombers - KG 4, KG 53, KG 55, KG 100 ( reference for the forthcoming Airfix new tool He 111)

on offer via Manuel Rauh here at the time of posting. Click on the images to view large.

Preparations for a night sortie over the UK at Vannes, France during early 1941, home to I./KG 100. Below, a view of "6N+NK"

II./ KG 53 over the Baltic during  August 1944 coded  A1+LN. Note upper DL 131 turret with 13mm MG 131

Below; KG 53 machine - captioned in the album as "My crew - from left to right..". The second image caption reads  " Taken just before a mission - 'A1+BN' abgesturzt  (crashed). Nice view of the dorsal Drehlafette rotatable turret, so probably an H-16/ R1, the designation for the DL 131 electrically powered turret with a single MG 131 in the B-Stand (dorsal) position, standard on the last major production variant, the H- 20.

Camouflage appears to be (likely 76) blotches and black under surfaces. And my first thought was that this also applied to the KG 26 machine in the image below.

via Anders Hjortsberg

 " ..Now regarding the color photo above, I'm starting to think that it's an old Heinkel that was originally painted in RLM79 and later was given an overspray with 70, 71 or 80. I realize RLM 79 seems strange at first, but the photo is quite faded and the color would be faded as well. But it does have a warm cast to it. Besides, RLM79 is the only color I can think of that light, that would be so carefully applied on a Heinkel that the canopy framing would be painted as well. The white tailband is another clue that we're dealing with an aircraft related to operations in the MTO. In other words, I don't think it has anything to do with the other ones.. "

more squiggles; light (possibly 76) over darker 70/71 finish which virtually all He 111s must have been finished in from the factory.

below; night blitz scheme - brush applied !

below; unusual Wintertarnung - He111 H-16 coded G1+FK of 2./KG 55 taken over Charkow Sud in July 1942 according to the seller. However  the first test flights at Rostock with the He 111 H-16 variant took place in December 1942. The first loss report mentioning the version He 111 H-16/R1 with the dorsal all-glazed DL 131/1C turret is from December 1943. So this image ..+FK dates most likely from that winter  when He 111 Gruppen in the East applied similar camouflage.

Monday, 25 May 2015

The aircraft of Adolf Galland -Bf 109 E-3 Stab./ JG 27

Apologies for not posting this when it was published at the end of last year. Avions issue 202 (Nov/Dec 2014) featured an exceptional 27-page piece on Adolf Galland's aircraft (from his He 51s to his Fw 190s and Siebels!) with some super photos and artworks courtesy of Thierry Dekker.

Back issue available here

Can't recall having seen his Stab./JG 27 Emil with this variation on the 02/70 finish (?) - filing this one as reference for another great Bf 109 model subject..

Bf 109 E-3 WNr. 936 " mini-chevron and bars"  Stab./JG 27

"..during this period - May-June 1940 - I tried out a new grey-green camouflage finish on my aircraft. Unfortunately my machine was frequently mistaken for one of the rare Hurricanes which showed up now and again..One day I nearly paid the price.."

Stab./ JG 27 start their take off run during May 1940; from left to right, TO Oblt Gustav Rodel's "T and bars", Hptm Galland's WNr 936 (Gruppenstab Ia-Offizier) and the "chevron bars" of Gkr. Obslt. Max Ibel

Much more on Galland's aircraft on this blog

Galland's Friedrich "special"

"Der Reichsmarschall bei Oberst Galland.."

Ebay Emils - a collection of over 50 Bf 109 Emils posted

Galland's Emils and Friedrichs

Aces of JG 26

Bf 109 G-6/R2 with ASM-engine, WNr. 162080, 4./(F) 123, Staffelkapitän, Oblt. Werner Kohla

Filing this one for reference for those blog readers/modellers not using FB or TOCH - you know who you are!

Me 109 G-6/U2, R2, with ASM-engine, "blue 9" WNr. 162080, 4./(F) 123, Staffelkapitän Oblt. Werner Kohla, Reims, September 1944

ULTRA CX/MSS/R.276 (C),70 Report signed KOHLA dated 13/8 to TO:- A/c (plural) Me 109 G-6, U2, R2, with ASM-engine, Works Nos. 162080, 163006, 26043, 27172, 20583, 161732, 163491, taken over from Workshop Guyancourt. Equipment for all a/c, methyl-alcohol water injection system, automatic mosaic camera 50/30. 1 engine-mounted MG 151/20, FuGe 16Z, FuGe 25A, installation sets without equipment. NOTE: Source believes this was from 4.(F)/123 and was almost certainly to (F) 123.

via Nick Beale. See discussion at TOCH

Friday, 22 May 2015

KG 6 Junkers Ju 188, Ju 88 - daily Ebay photo find # 117

Edit- just sold via seller Manuel Rauh at 'engelbubu fotos', are these nice images from a KG 6 album featuring Ju 188s and a Ju 88 Nachtjäger. 
Edit- currently at 350 euros with over two days of bidding still to go. 
Edit 01/ selling price on this one image 611 euros! 

Click on the image to view large!

On offer here

along with this nice KG 26 torpedo bomber

Thursday, 21 May 2015

a new book for my library - " Florennes Raum Sieben" by Roland Charlier - I./ NJG 4 war diary - new Luftwaffe books

Written by local Florennes researcher Roland Charlier, "Florennes Raum Sieben 1942-44" (Florennes Sector Seven - a reference to the airfield's Himmelbett zone) is a thick 470 page A-5 French-language softback presenting aspects of the wartime history of Florennes airfield in Belgium. Most important of these were the activities of I./ NJG 4 under Kommandeur and leading Nachtjagd ace Wilhelm Herget. The book is the result of nearly 30 years research and is packed with unpublished pictures, recollections of former airmen (now all deceased) and anecdotes. It focuses on  local wartime life deeply influenced by the Raum 7 network, the establishment of the Fliegerhorst at Florennes but also the bombings, crashes and air warfare in the area. It is effectively a war diary of I./ NJG 4 for the period covered and features lengthy extracts from the daily diary kept by ace Ludwig Meister's Bordfunker Hannes Forke as well as first-person accounts from Meister, letter extracts from Kommandeur Wilhelm Herget and other pilots.

original diary extract from Hannes Forke, BF to NJG 4 ace Ludwig Meister as published in 'Florennes Raum Sieben'

The book also deals with the deployment of I./ JG 26 to Florennes. Roland received support from noted Belgian historians Jean-Louis Roba and Erik Mombeeck, two leading Luftwaffe researchers who need no introduction here - needless to say they carried out many interviews with Luftwaffe veterans during the 1980s.

I am really enjoying this book. The detail is fascinating - how the pilots lived and how the airfield was organised with lots of local colour, as well as pilot accounts and rare pictures. If you can cope with the French text then I recommend it highly. The A-5 format unfortunately means that some of the very nice photos are not given the prominence they deserve, but as the author himself explained to me, the format has certain advantages for ease of transport and stock when self-publishing.

Below;  Lt. Norbert Pietrek at the controls of his 2./ NJG 4 Bf 110 coded '3C+HK' at Florennes. Pietrek shot down a Halifax and a Lancaster on the night of 9-10 August 1943 before flying a daylight sortie against the US 8th AF on 17 August; the famous Schweinfurt-Regensburg raid. The aircraft wears a light 76/77 (?) squiggle finish over the (presumably) grey uppersurfaces (courtesy Roland Charlier, click to view large)

On 17 August 1943 the US 8th Air Force attacked the ball bearing factories at Schweinfurt and the Messerschmitt plants in Regensburg. The Luftwaffe threw just about everything they had into battle that day, including the Messerschmitt Bf 110 Nachtjäger. A dangerous move, because the twin-engine Messerschmitt Bf 110 was no match for the more manoeuverable escorts. 2./NJG 4 pilot Norbert Pietrek recalled;

 "..That day 17 August 1943, we were ordered up to counter an American raid in daylight hours. An assignment that we, night fighters, considered suicide as the Bf 110 could not hope to match the American and British escort fighters. I took off from Florennes together with six comrades, among them Staffelkapitän Altendorf and my Katschmarek Gralmann, heading north. I'm sure Kowalzik and Schulenburg were also with us. But we were intercepted by enemy fighters and we immediately formed a defensive circle. However Kowalzik stupidly left the formation to dive on a lone Spitfire (sic) and that let the enemy fighters in. Both of Gralmann's engines were on fire, but he still managed to pull up his nose to get off a salvo that brought down one of the US fighters before baling out and  jumping clear...."

 In his account Pietrek assumes that the Staffel ran into Spitfires but their adversaries that day were probably Thunderbolts of the 63 Fighter Squadron/56th FG. 1st Lieutenant Edgard D. Whitley claimed a Bf 110, 1st Lieutenant Glen D. Schiltz Jr. and 2nd Lieutenant John H. Truluck each reported having "damaged a Me 210 " The dogfight was, according to US reports, situated between Ans and Sint-Niklaas about 16.25-16.40 British time. Two of the damaged Messerschmitts managed to escape by putting down at Sint-Denijs-Westrem airfield. Staffelkapitän Altendorf and his Bordfunker, Feldwebel Wilfried Arndt, were less fortunate. Their Bf 110 (Werknummer 6160 coded 3C+DK) became uncontrollable, and Aussteigen (bale out) was the only option. According to German records, this event occurred near Assenede. The Staffelkapitän landed safely, his BF Arndt was slightly injured.

Pietrek continued;

"...I managed to find shelter in the clouds and when I emerged glimpsed the coast of England. I could see the condensation trails of B-17s returning from the raid. I closed on a B-17 and brought it down, watched it go down into the sea, but in the absence of a witness, this was a victory that would never be credited ...our Staffel lost three aircraft that day..."

(blog author note; compare Pietrek's account here with his lengthy piece in T. Boiten's 'Nachtjagd' (Crowood 1997) described as having taken place on 25 August against 9th AF Marauder's attacking Rouen!)

 Pietrek's 2. Staffel was led by Oberleutnant Rudolf Altendorf, " a man of great distinction within his unit, thanks to his outstanding record of service". Rudi Altendorf  had already had a successful career as a Zerstörer, returning four victories by day before his transfer to the Nachtjagd. After a short stay in Nachtjagdgeschwader 3, he was transferred in the summer of 1942 as Oberleutnant in I./ NJG 4 based in Laon-Athies, France. I./ NJG 4 moved in March/April 1943 to their newly constructed Fliegerhorst (airbase) Florennes. Altendorf was appointed Staffelkapitän 2./NJG 4. After the summer of 1943 Altendorf and his Staffel were transferred to Germany, where the 2./NJG 4 became 12./NJG 5. On 1 January 1944 Altendorf was promoted to Hauptmann and appointed Kommandeur of IV./ NJG 5 stationed at Brandis. Altendorf survived the war with a total score of 25 victories, for which he was awarded with the Deutsches Kreuz in Gold. 

Below right;  Oblt. Rudolf Altendorf