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Kagero miniTopcolors 30 "Luftwaffe’s Baptism of Fire Part 1"


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miniTopcolors 30 "Luftwaffe’s Baptism of Fire Part 1"

by Maciej Góralczyk, Andrzej Sadło, Janusz Swiatłoń, and Arkadiusz Wróbe 

Kagero Publishing, Price: €14.10


Hot on the heels of my last review on early war He 111Ps of KG 27 comes some more early war (and pre-war) Luftwaffe goodness from Kagero, "Luftwaffe's Baptism of Fire, Part I".  As I mentioned last article the outlook for large scale early war Luftwaffe subjects is considerably rosier than in years past.  We now have state of the art kits for most of the notable aircraft of the period but not exactly a plethora of decals to support them so this installment of "Topcolors" is a welcome addition.


By February 1935 Germany had abandoned any pretense of abiding by The Treaty of Versailles and the Luftwaffe was well on it's way to being a force to be reckoned with, it continued to grow to become one of the strongest, most doctrinally advanced, and most battle-experienced air forces in the world when WW2 started in Europe in September 1939.  By the summer of 1939, the Luftwaffe had nine Jagdgeschwader (fighter wings) mostly equipped with the Messerschmitt Bf 109E, four 'Zerstörergeschwader (destroyer wings) equipped with the Messerschmitt Bf 110 heavy fighter, 11 Kampfgeschwader (bomber wings) equipped with mainly the Heinkel He 111 and the Dornier Do 17Z; and as it had encountered design difficulties, was just starting to accept the Junkers Ju 88A for service with only a dozen aircraft of the type considered combat-ready, and four Sturzkampfgeschwader (dive bomber wings) ready for combat, primarily armed with the iconic Junkers Ju 87B Stuka. 




Owners of other books in the series will feel right at home, the familiar twenty page booklet presented in landscape format features eight aircaft.  Each subject is accompanied by a beautiful 4-view color profile and a short narrative on the aircraft.  The eight aircraft featured offer a nice variety of subjects, including the Bf 109, Bf 110, Ju 87 and the He 111.  Two aircraft from the Spanish Civil War are welcome addition.




aircraft featured in this volume include:


- Junkers Ju 87 B-1; coded '29•8' of 5. K/88, Legion Condor, Sanjurjo airfield, Zaragoza, Spain, late 1938,

- Messerschmitt Bf 109 E-1; coded '6•119', flown by Hptm. Siebelt Reents, Staffelkapitän of 1. J/88, Legion Condor, León, Spain, spring 1939,

- Messerschmitt Bf 109 E-1; 'Black 14' of 2.(J)/LG 2, Poland, mid-September 1939,

- Messerschmitt Bf 109 E-1; W.Nr. 4048, 'Yellow 7' of 3./JGr. 101, Hoya, Germany, 18 November 1939,

- Messerschmitt Bf 109 D-1; W.Nr. 630, 'Black N+7', flown by Oblt. Johannes ‘Macki’ Steinhoff, Staffelkapitän of 11.(N)/JG 2, Hage, Germany, April 1940,

- Messerschmitt Bf 109 E-3; flown by Oblt. Wilfried Pufahl of Stab II./JG 53, Mannheim-Sandhofen, Germany, April 1940,

- Messerschmitt Bf 110 C-2; coded 'L1+KK' of 14./LG 1, crew: Uffz. Hans Bechthold (pilot), Uffz. Wilhelm Harder (radio operator); Mannheim-Sandhofen, Germany, late spring 1940,

- Heinkel He 111 P-2; coded '1G+HL' of 3./KG 27, crew: Uffz. Otto Keiser (pilot), Hptm. Robert Sichart von Sichartshoff (observer, CO), Uffz. Gustav Bergmann (radio operator), Uffz. Paul Kleinitzke (flight engineer); Neukuhren, East Prussia, 15 September 1939 (1:32 and 1:72 decals only).




As we've come to expect we're treated to a couple of beautiful sheets for Cartograf.  Do I ever get tired of extolling the virtues of these decals?  No, I don't, nor do I tire of a good beer or Cuban cigars, but that's not particularly relevant here!






So what do we think?


A sure fire hit, unique subjects that are often overlooked by the modeling community, looking forward to the part two!


Highly Recommended


With thanks to Kagero for the review sample.


Available directly from Kagero here:


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