Armour Collection B11B301 German Messerschmitt Me 262A "Sturmvogel" Jet Fighter - Wilhelm Herget, Jagdverband 44 (1:48 Scale)
"It was as if an angel is pushing you..."
- Adolf Galland, discussing his first flight in the Me 262 jet fighter
The jet-powered Me 262 Sturmvogel ("Stormbird") has long since gained its place in the annals of international aeronautical history. With its sleek aerodynamic design and high performance jet engines, the Me 262 radically changed the way in which air combat was waged.
The first design work on the Me 262 began in October 1938, with the first test flight, piloted by Fritz Wendel, occuring on April 18th, 1942. Tests continued well into 1942, although by this time the Me 262 was outfitted with two highly-efficient BMW turbojet engines. When he saw the aircraft for the first time in early 1943, Hitler insisted that the plane be designed as a low-level bomber instead of a fighter, which undermined the sleek aerodynamic properties of the jet aircraft. After much in-fighting among the Luftwaffe's upper echelons, the plane was eventually converted back into a high level interceptor, with series production beginning in the spring of 1944. The first jet fighter unit, commanded by Major Walter Nowotny, was formed in the summer of 1944 and was composed of many of the Luftwaffe's leading aces.
By war's end, 1,433 Me 262s had been produced, far too few a number to have much of an impact on the Allies strategic bombing campaign. In the end, the Allies' superiority in numbers overcame the tremendous technical achievements ushered in by the Me 262 program.
This particular 1:48 scale replica of a Me 262 was flown by Major Wilhelm Herget and features a 50mm cannon affixed to its nose. Sold Out!
Wingspan: 10.4 inches
Length: 8.5 inches
Historical Account: "Hunters from the Sky" - Jagdverband 44 (JV 44) was a special fighter unit of top German fighter ace pilots in the Luftwaffe during the last months of World War II. The main aircraft used by the unit was the Messerschmitt Me 262 jet fighter. They were known by various nicknames, including "Der Galland-Zirkus" (The Galland Circus).
The commander of JV 44 was General Adolf Galland (103 victories) the former General der Jagdflieger (General of Day Fighters) who had recently been sacked from his command by Hermann Göring for attacking the operational policies and tactics used by the Luftwaffe High Command. It was hoped by Galland's superiors that a front line command would result in his death in action, thereby removing the problem of Galland's criticism. This unit was composed of highly experienced pilots from Galland's former staff or otherwise co-opted by Galland from units which had disbanded or were re-equipping. It had relatively few operational planes available for any single sortie and was repeatedly forced to relocate due to the approach of Allied ground forces. At war's end the unit was disbanded and its brief history came to an end.