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Louis Gardner
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Tamiya 1/48 FW-190 A3, Werk Number 223, Hans “Assi” Hahn, Gruppenkommandeur III / JG 2

This article is part of a series:
  1. Kasserine Pass GB: 1/48 scale Tamiya FW-190A , Oblt. E. Rudorffer, CO 6 / JG2 Tunisia
  2. 1/48 Tamiya FW-190 A8, “Otto Kittel” 2. JG 54, Black 1, Werk Number 690 282
  3. 1/48 Tamiya FW-190 A4, as Flown by Leutnant Eberhard Von Burath, Adjutant 1 Gruppe / JG 1
  4. Tamiya 1/48 FW-190 A3, Werk Number 223, Hans “Assi” Hahn, Gruppenkommandeur III / JG 2

This is something that I have been meaning to do for a while... I'm finally posting the last from the series of four planes that I built for the Kasserine Pass Group Build. Thanks again Dave Thomas, @davidathomas

for coming up with the idea, and helping to encourage all of us along the way when we felt as if we were "hitting the wall...

This model was strictly a straight from the box build. It was a typical experience and posed no problems at all. I didn't have to use any filler at all since the fit was spot on.

This one was finished using Model Master enamels. I chose to use the early War Luftwaffe colors of RLM 02 / 71 over 65. From what I have read, the early FW-190's were delivered in this color combination. It's use was supposedly stopped somewhere during the late A3 and early A4 variants, when the Focke Wulf factories swapped over to the more commonly seen "Mid War" camouflage colors of RLM 74 / 75 /76.

The FW-190 was the result of Dipl-Ing Kurt Tank. It was designed to be very "user friendly" with ease of maintenance, rapid production, and high performance all wrapped up in one package. The wide track landing gear made it much easier to land (and taxi), that it's stable mate, the Bf-109. The Fw-190 also used the BMW-801 radial engine which didn't have a cooling system since it was air cooled. This would be an advantage over the 109 in Russia, and was less susceptible to being brought down since it lacked a radiator and coolant lines.

However the very first Fw 190's had problems with the original engine (the BMW 139) overheating. On it's first test flight, the pilot reported that it was like he was flying with his feet in a fire place! These problems were eventually worked out, and the plane was put into wide spread use as a fighter by the Luftwaffe. It served on all Fronts (Western, Eastern and Mediterranean / North Africa) at one time or another.

Gunther Rall, who was the worlds third highest ranking fighter ace of all time, (with 275 confirmed victories), and who flew the BF-109, is supposed to have stated something like this about the stable mate 109... and it's narrow track landing gear.
"There are 109 pilots that have ground looped a 109, and those that are about too!"

When the type was first encountered by the RAF, it came as a nasty surprise. It outclassed the Spitfire in every area of performance, and was heavier armed to boot. Not many people know this, but the two aircraft from WW2 that had the fastest roll rate, was the F4U Corsair... and the FW-190, both of which are among my favorite types.

It was the dominant fighter on the Western Front until the Spitfire Mk V entered service with the RAF. Nothing could match it in any area of performance. It was the machine you didn't want to encounter in aerial combat. Unless you had it in your view from this direction...

and then it probably wouldn't remain there too long if there was an experienced pilot at the controls... Like Hans Hahn, seen in this autographed photo below.

Who flew the original plane that my model was built after. I found these pictures of his plane online.

and tried to replicate the effects to see how close my model came to the original by using a black and white photo filter. I think I am pretty close... Here's the model. Photographed in a similar pose in Black and White.

Followed by a color picture of the model.

I found an original photo online showing 64 victories displayed on the rudder of the original.

Where the Tamiya kit supplied decals show 61. (and now I see where the decal has folded over during application... something I missed earlier. Ooops!)

Hans Hahn regularly had his personal emblem, which was a rooster, routinely painted on the nose of planes he flew. Here you can see it on the cowling of the 190. In German, the word Hahn literally translates into "Rooster'...

Hans Hahn was born in Gotha (present day Thuringia) on April 14th, 1914. He had an older sister name Kate. On April 1st, 1934, just 13 days before his 20th birthday, Hans enlisted into the German Army (then called the Reichswehr) as an Officer Candidate. He served in the Infantry and was promoted to the rank of Corporal only eight months later in December of 1934.

The following month in January 1935, Hans went to the "War College" in Munich, where he was promoted to the rank of Master Sergeant on October 1st.
He attended classes at the War College until November, 1935, when he transferred into the Luftwaffe and began flight training.

The following year on April 1st, while still in flight school, Hans was promoted again, this time to the rank of Second Lieutenant. 14 days later he was posted to 4/ JG 134 "Horst Wessel" at Werl near Dortmund. While assigned to JG 134, he regularly flew Arado Ar 65 and Ar 68's, until the new Messerschmitt Bf-109 arrived. The unit first received the "B" model, then shortly afterwards the switched over to the "D-1" variant.

Hahn was a very gifted athlete, and was asked to participate in the 1936 Olympics in the Pentathlon event. This event is a culmination of skills that would typically be used by a soldier. These Olympic "pentathlon" events include fencing, pistol shooting, a cross country run, horseback jumping, and freestyle swimming.

Unfortunately for Hans, shortly before the Olympics began, he became ill and had to withdraw from the event.

The assignment at 4 / JG 134 ended on October 31st, 1937. The next day he was assigned to the Fighter Flying School "Jagdfliegerschule" at Werneuchen near Berlin, as an instructor on November 1st, 1937. Here he was promoted to 1st Lieutenant and served as a Flight Leader or "Staffelfuhrer".

Afterwards Hahn was again transferred, this time to II / JG 3 after February 1st, 1939. It is here that he introduces the "Rooster" emblem that we see on most of his planes. On December 15th, 1939, he was promoted to Staffelkapitain of 4 / JG 2.

With the start of the "Battle for France", II / JG 2 moved to Munster, and then to airfields in Belgium. On May 14th, 1940, he made his first victory claim, which was a RAF Hawker Hurricane. Hans eventually claimed 5 kills during the "Battle for France".

With the Battle of Britain starting shortly afterwards, the number of victories he claimed continued to rise. By September 1940, he had over 20 claims and was awarded the "Knights Cross of the Iron Cross".

With the medal came yet another promotion, this time to the rank of Hauptman and he also became the Gruppenkommandeur of III / JG 2. By August of 1941, Hans had achieved 41 victories, and was awarded the "Oak Leaves" to his Iron Cross. Hitler presented the award personally on August 27th.

Two other Luftwaffe "Experten" were present, also accepting Oak Leaves for their Iron Crosses at the Wolfs Lair. These other two pilots were Hans Phillip and Heinz Bar. Hahn became an "Ace in a Day" while flying this FW-190 I have modelled. He shot down five Spitfires on May 6th, 1942. These planes were victory numbers 61 - 65 and should closely correspond with the victory tally shown on the rudder of this build. Hahn scored 68 victories in the West, including 62 RAF Fighter Command Spitfires and Hurricanes and 4 heavy bombers.

Following his 66th claim, which was a Spitfire Mk V, he was posted to the "Ost Front" shortly thereafter, as the new Commander of II / JG 54, the famous "Green Hearts", serving near Leningrad. Within 3 months, he scored another 42 kills, this time they were Soviet machines. Hahn scored 8 Russian fighters in one day on January 6, 1943.

He claimed his 100th victim on January 26th, 1943. Hans was the 34th Luftwaffe pilot to achieve the "Century" mark.

On the morning of February 21st, 1943, he had plans to fly to Riga for a meeting with Luftflotte I Command Staff. Because it was not going to be a regular combat flight, he didn't carry his sidearm, and was not wearing his usual combat flight suit. As he was walking to his plane, which was a BF-109 G2 / R6, his regular wingman (Max Stotz who would eventually score 189 victories and fly more than 700 missions during the War) ran out to him with an urgent request for fighter support over the Demyansk Pocket...

So Hans jumped into his 109 and took off. Near Staraya Russia, they encountered enemy fighters. He shot down a Lavochkin La-5 for number 108 - and was promptly shot at by another Soviet fighter. Some sources state it was flown by Soviet Ace Pavel Grazhdaninov (13 victories) of 169 IAP.

Some hits were scored in the left wing of his Bf-109. Hans promptly broke off the engagement and attempted to return to base. As he was flying back, the Diamler Benz in his 109 began overheating, and he force landed behind enemy lines...

Where he was captured and held as a Prisoner of War by the Russians until 1950... Hans flew a total of at least 560 sorties, Scored 108 victories, with 68 on the Western Front, 40 on the Eastern front, along with 36 more listed as "probable".

Upon his release he wrote a book about his experiences and eventually went to work as the director of a company named Wano Schwarzpulver Company, that manufactured gunpowder.

In 1971 he was married, and he retired in 1977. Several years later on December 18th, 1982, he died of cancer in Munich. Hans was buried in Tirol, Austria with his lifelong friend Julius Meimberg speaking at the memorial service. He was 68 years old.

In case you're interested in looking at what went into this build, here's a link to the construction article that was part of the "Kasserine Pass" Group Build.

This Tamiya kit has a few small "errors", but to me it looks just fine, and looks like a FW-190 in the end. I'm happy with how it turned out, (other than the rudder decal for the "kill" markings), and I hope you have enjoyed the article as well.

Thanks for looking!

Reader reactions:
9  Awesome

45 responses

  1. Outstanding FW, Louis! And an autographed picture. Cool!

  2. Great looking FW Louis. Give me a 190 any day. I hope to add another or more to my collection and to do them justice like yours. What's your opinions on Tamiya vs Eudard kits?

    • Thanks Gary @gwskat
      for the compliments. Like you I favor the 190 over the 109 too. As far as the comparison between the new tool Eduard vs. the Tamiya, I can't personally comment.

      I don't have a new Eduard kit to compare it too. But from what I have read, the new Eduard is a very nice kit.

      I can personally vouch for the fit of the Tamiya kit. No filler at all was needed and it was a fun one to build. Not too hard or complicated... sort of like a "Goldie Locks" kit... "just right" for me.

      • Thanks Louis. Can't go wrong with a Tamiya, I really enjoyed building the Tamiya Mossie and the P-51B. My likes of the 109 stops at the F model but the 190 is a favorite, especially the 190D. Again, nice job. Keep it FUN, friend.

    • The new Eduard leaves the Tamiya in the dust. Correct length gear legs, correct size wheels. Makes a beeeeeeeeeg difference. That's not to say that the Tamiya and Dragon kits should be tossed, far from it. Use the "extra" legs and wheels in the Eduard kit to correct the Tamiya. Both the Tamiya and the Dragon kits look fine sitting next to an Eduard (from a foot away). It's just the fine detail where the Eduard leaves them in the dust.

  3. Very nicely done. I think I might do his Bf 109 F pretty soon. I've always like the look of his "Rooster" emblem.

    • Thanks Tom ! @trod348

      The "F" model of the 109 is my favorite. It's streamlined and just looks all business...

      I have plans on building one of my Zvezda 109-F kits as another one of Hahn's planes. On occasion you see it built with a red colored nose, but I'm going to build mine up with a yellow nose.

      I think people may have mistaken the color as red after looking at Black and White pictures where the nose looks darker due to the use of Orthochromatic film. But that's another can of worms...

      I'm looking forward to seeing this one from you !

      Thanks again... 🙂

      • The red nose is wrong! Another Hex-Spurt demonstrates his moron stupidity 45 years ago, not realizing he was looking at an orthochromatic print. Yellow is right!

        And there are differences between his F-2 (whole nose yellow) and F-4 (lower cowling yellow).

  4. I’m much more a ‘Dora’ man, Louis, but this is a lovely A3. Completes an outstanding set, more so because of the back story and history lesson. The soft camo edges are wonderfully done and the overall paintwork is superb. Five Spitfires in a day...

    • Hello there David ! @dirtylittlefokker
      Thanks for the compliments on the builds. I sincerely appreciate them. I was just as surprised as you were after reading about him downing 5 Spits in a day...

      Maybe it was due to his athletic abilities and being in better physical condition ? Possibly he had more combat experience and flight training ? Or was it the FW-190 machine was better than the Spitfire at that time ?

      Quite possibly the truth is a mixture from all of this and lies somewhere in the middle.

      Since you are a "Dora" type, I have a little surprise in store for you soon (hopefully around the early part of next year). Remember these ?

      The plan is to fire up the "Iron Werks" and build the remaining 1/48 scale 190 kits in the stash similar to how the Spitfires are currently underway...

      That's the plan anyhow.

      Thanks again buddy !

  5. Louis, another nice bit of model work from your work bench. Well done !

  6. What a beauty! Perfect finish and just the right amount of weathering. Always a pleasure reading a well researched backstory.

    • Thanks @tcpacheco

      It looks like we share the same interests in aircraft. 🙂

      I thank you for the compliments, and I am very pleased that you enjoyed reading the story behind the man and the plane. I took a wild guess after looking at several pictures of the actual plane as far as the weathering went. I didn't want to over do it because I figured that his plane would be better maintained since he was the "Boss".

      Thanks again !

  7. Well Louis, this is a grand finale of the series “Iron Werks” 😉
    The build looks better than I recalled, and the biography about Hahn is just fantastic, full of interesting facts. I had no idea he was an athlete, for instance.
    After the Kittel kite, this is my second favourite of the lot!
    Btw, going for the yellow nose 109 F should be more accurate. Your explanation is correct, but some sources persist in using red as a ID for nose or underside engine cowl...

    • Thanks Pedro, @holzhamer

      If I had it to do over again, (especially after looking at the original pictures closer), I would have painted the right side aileron in a solid RLM 02 color, along with the elevator on the same side in overall RLM 71. The upper wing camouflage pattern would be a little different and I would have caught the victory decal being flipped over at the top of one corner... I may eventually go back and "edit" this build with those improvements at a later date.

      I'm very pleased that you enjoyed these builds. I always try to add a little bit of history behind the man and his machine. I learned a lot about him during the research, and the athlete part caught me totally by surprise too.

      The Kittel plane turned out very nice... I'm happy with it as is.

      Thanks for confirming my thoughts on the yellow nose for the Hahn 109. That's exactly what I was thinking too...

      I have only seen one picture where the color under the nose of a 190 looks to be a shade of red... it actually looks more like a reddish orange... This looks like a JG 51 "Molders" machine somewhere in Russia.

      Who knows for sure... this picture could have been "altered" or colorized, but it looks fairly authentic to me. But I'm not an expert. But from everything else I have seen, the standard color used is "Yellow" on the Eastern Front.

      What do you think ?

      Thanks again my friend... and please stay tuned as I have a plan to build quite a few more Luftwaffe subjects next year, including all of the remaining 1/48 scale 190 kits in the stash, and the new tool ICM Ju-88 A5 for starters.

      Just like the current Spitfire builds underway .

      • Louis @lgardner I recall the first time I saw this photo and had the same thoughts you did, like if the colour was authentic or just another colourised BW photo? Still don’t know wich goes, but I have another theory: the bright yellow areas is NOT our usual suspect- RLM 04, but more likely the lesser used RLM 27, and the more darker/orange undercowl being the 04.

        Now, given poor colour definition of film back then, it reproduced the 04 with a dark hue, darker than it actually was, although it was darker than the RLM 27. Just check Ullman’s colour chips in his “Luftwaffe colours 1935-45” book.

        Can’t prove this theory of course but then again who can?

        As usual you can count with me following your builds, Doras will be interesting, but the Ju.88 will be even more 😉

        • Pedro my friend, @holzhamer
          You bring up some excellent points on those colors...and a valid theory.
          Unfortunately, I don't have the color chip book you mentioned, but I have looked at some online references and various color chips that way. The problem with that is how a computer screen monitor is calibrated, and how the actual colors are displayed. I do actually have an American Federal Standards FS color chip book, but this should not even be used to compare to a Wartime German color for obvious reasons... it's like comparing apples to oranges...

          Please stay tuned for the upcoming Dora builds... and the Ju-88 A5 too... I might even build another Do-17 as I have another one of the ICM kits in the stash. Other than the problems with the tail plane and the engine cowling support rods, the Do-17Z looks like it will be a nice one to build...
          I have been thinking about building up the remaining 1/48 scale Me-262 and He-162 jets as well... 🙂 Possibly a 110 (or a 410 even).
          Next year has a lot of Luftwaffe subjects that I want to build...

  8. Another top-notch and all around great presentation, Louis...I like it all.

  9. Great work, Louis. You got the colors right (most don't).

  10. Beautiful Louis simply a well done Butcher Bird. You have quite a stash as well. Myself I only have one left that is the Italeri Ta-152, which you have one and is a rebox of DML's kit without the PE and white metal parts. Also without the open main gear well. Great model with a very nice history of the plane itself. Gives it character. Looking forward to whats next.

    • Thank you Chuck... @uscusn

      I sincerely appreciate the compliments my friend.

      The large stash I have is a result of continual purchases from "way back" when I didn't have the time to devote to the hobby. Now I am finally getting around to building some, and I'm trying to make up for lost time I guess...

      I'd love to see you build your Ta-152 sometime. If it turns out half as nice as your Tamiya Ki-46 Dinah did, then you will have a show stopper on your hands... 🙂 Time (and the good Lord willing) I plan on building up the remaining 1/48 scale Wurgers next year, and quite possibly the 262's and 162's as well.

      Speaking of 262's... That's what my next article will be on. So please stay tuned !

      Thanks again... 🙂

  11. Hello Louis,
    Great build and lots of interesting information.
    All this is very much appreciated. Regards, Dirk

    • Hello Dirk, @orion

      Thank you for the kind words. I am very happy to hear that you appreciated the plane and the article. I try to add some back ground information when possible, as it helps to bring the model to life... maybe I'm just a history geek. 🙂

      Thanks again my friend. Take care.

  12. Hey Louis, I'm glad you got to posting this - it completes your set and does it in great style!

    I don't know if there has ever been a poll on iM - I know it happens elsewhere - but I think 190s would rate highly on the favourites list. This is an absolute beauty! Your trademark 'real vs model' shot is sensational - congratulations on the culmination of brilliant project!

    • Hey Paul ! @yellow10
      This is something that I have been wanting to do for a while now. I temporarily put the RAF builds on hold, while I am posting these articles. You can't ride two horses at once... (or motorcycles for that matter). Next up is the Tamiya Me-262 "S" that I built a little while ago.

      Then its back to business as usual. I did manage to get the canopies installed and masked so I'm ready to start spraying the pre shading now.

      I know that for me personally, the 190 is definitely high up on the list. It's my favorite German WW2 fighter.

      That's a real good idea to have a poll... How could we do it ? Hmmmmmmmmmmm.

      I'm also pleased that you like the 'real vs. model' pictures. When I have one (or two) available, I like to include them to see just how close I got it... and after close scrutiny, I have found a few small errors with this one. Someday I will fix them, but for now I can live with it...

      Thanks again for the compliments, and I am looking forward to seeing what a masterpiece you will make out of the WNW Albatros of MVR... That is going to be a spectacular build... so count me in as a follower.

      Take care buddy. 🙂

  13. An excellent job,Louis!

  14. Really well done "FW"! Finish is fantastic and right-on. Sweet bird. Great photos, history, and overall presentation.

    • Thanks Paul, @jjetmec

      I'm happy that you enjoyed reading this one and looking at the photos. In most of the articles I post here, I try to include a little history lesson when it's applicable. The FW is my favorite German fighter of WW2.

      Thanks again for the compliments ! I sincerely appreciate them. 🙂

  15. Hello Louis,
    Great looking FW. Thanks for the information regarding the AC. The signed photograph was very special. Also the clarity of the pictures deserves mentioning.
    Regards, Dirk.

    • Hello Dirk, @orion
      Thanks for the compliments, I'm glad that you have liked this one. It is one of my better builds as far as Focke Wulf's go. I am particularly pleased with how it turned out, but there are a few errors I eventually have to fix.

      The autographed picture is something I found online, and just knew I had to include it since it gave a more of a personal touch to the article.

      In the future I have plans on building a dedicated photo light box to take better quality photos for the articles I post here. I have not been able to locally find an affordable light source for the box and would be interested to see what others have used for theirs.

      I have been using the camera that came with my IPhone to take these pictures. I have a digital Camera that I use on occasion at car shows. I may give it a try to see if there is any improvement with the quality of the photos.

      Thanks again and take care.

  16. Another beauty from the Iron Works assembly line! And your 190 stash...reminds me of my F-4 stash...!

    • Hey Greg ! @gkittinger

      It's great to hear form you my friend. Thanks for the compliments on the 190. Please stay tuned as I have plans for building the remaining 1/48 scale 190 stash, quite possibly the 262 and 162's jet planes as well.

      I knew that you liked the Phantom... that's cool to have a good number of them ! You can't have too many ... 🙂

      Take care buddy.

  17. Awesome and awe inspiring Louis!

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