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Ben Walmsley
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2 Messerschmitts in original wartime paint

February 21, 2021 · in Aviation · · 31 · 2.4K

G'day all, it's been an age since I posted here as life has been in the way of modelling recently. Unfortunately I still don't have a project to share but I thought some of you might be interested in this.

I recently took my son to the Australian War Memorial in Canberra for his birthday. Among the AWMs impressive collection are a pair of Messerschmitts that still carry their wartime paint schemes. “black X” and a G-6. In fact, in the case of the 109, the museum claims it is the only known example in original colours. The 262 shows areas of the original RLM paint as well as over painting by it's captors in 1945.

The exhibits are kept in extremely low light in the interest of preservation, and access to all angles of the aircraft is fairly restricted, particularly with the 262. This made photographing them difficult. Nevertheless, I hope they are a useful reference. Enjoy the pics!

Reader reactions:
18  Awesome

28 additional images. Click to enlarge.

31 responses

  1. Those were amazing pics, Ben!
    It is of utmost importance to see how the actual aircraft stood in reality.
    Thanks for sharing, they will definitely serve as reference.

  2. Cheers Spiros, the pleasure was all mine mate!

  3. Great pictures, thanks Ben!

  4. Thanks for sharing, Ben.
    Very useful pictures.
    What a wonderful day to spend your son's birthday, he must have liked it a lot.

  5. Hey Ben, fantastic shots - despite the light and the tight spaces! I'm a Pommy living on the Gold Coast - you just cemented my determination to head to Canberra to the AWM with my two (8 and 9). Thanks for the photos and the inspiration!

    • Hi Paul, the aircraft hall is currently being renovated so there are a few planes missing, but still well worth the trip. If you fly down, there is a bonus Hudson in the airport terminal.

  6. Fascinating. Transports you back! Weathering! Hope the poor pilot's not been stuck in there all this time 🙂

  7. Great photos Ben. Next time I am over east I will have to visit the memorial again. I haven't been since my early teens.

  8. Thanks for sharing. Pretty simple and crude mottling on the 109. Makes me feel better about my airbrush skills?.

  9. Nice! Great detail shots. Thanks for sharing.

  10. Thank you very much for posting those wonderful pictures Ben! Black X is a well known machine, but it’s the first time I see the 109 G-6. It’s a very peculiar machine, since it combines several features not the most usual, like having a retrofitted Erla Haube canopy, since it still carries the antena mast of the earlier squared canopies.

    Also quite interesting are the “mixed” paintings of the spinner, both one third white and spiral, the very visible patches of oxide primary and the reinforced stripe at the wingtip panel line. In fact the whole paintwork might as well been made by a talented modeller.

    Your post is a very valuable image source, I’m bookmarking them if you don’t mind 😉

  11. Wow! Thank you for Your effort! I will use Your pics as references in my future builds.

  12. What a valuable resource the photos are you posted.
    Weathering to the Max.
    Thank you.

  13. Considering the age of the a/c and the paint the things that I see are the number of scratches, scrapes, dings and missing paint. We modelers go to great links to have perfect paint jobs and flaw less finishes . Maybe another step in making a kit will include taking the kit out back and hitting it with a belt. 😉

    I am sure that at the end of the war the hardware was kept running and the looks of the aircraft didn't matter.

  14. Ben @popeofchillitown, thank you for sharing these fantastic kites. Indeed it was a great story that these were kept in original condition. Unlike later "bernfind" planes, these were newer restored, but kept in as close to original condition as humanly possible.

  15. What a time capsule these are, especially the '109, looks like it could fly today.
    The '262 is amazing too, it's a finely-built machine yet a bit crude in spots.
    Even considering they're 75 years old they really don't look it, and it's so nice to see the actual colors for once instead of someone's interpretations of them.
    Thanks so much for sharing these absolute treasures here with us.

  16. It's like looking through a time machine, awesome! Thanks for sharing .

  17. I love the fact that your photos prove that all the guys who are worried they can't airbrush nice neat mottling on a 109 can rest easy. 🙂

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