Sooner or later, every aircraft modeler builds the iconic WWII Luftwaffe Bf-109. You can find them in every scale from 1/144 to 1/24, and in every version from prototype to A, to K-14, and sub-variants from post-WWII. It is probably one of the top five most popular aircraft modeling subjects ever kitted.
To that point, there were 31 examples of the Bf-109 entered in 1/48 Single Engine Prop, at this summer’s 2019 ‘Nooga Nats! Obviously, they garnered their own subcategory split. I felt a bit sorry for, but also somewhat envious of Rich Van Zandt’s judging team as they laboriously examined all 31 examples. They were all outstanding … some were just slightly better than others. They checked that distinct splayed gear stance for consistent alignment. They checked wing and stabilizer alignments. They checked canopies and interiors. They checked finishes. They counted rivets … just kidding. In the end, they chose the best three. 10% of the total number entered of the type!
So then, how do you pick the best kit for the version you want to build? After you acquire the perfect kit for your choice of all those variants, how do you turn it into an attention getting, award-winning supermodel worthy of recognition as the best of 31 Bf-109s entered in the 1/48 Single Engine Prop category at the IPMS-USA Nationals contest? I can’t tell you. I’ve never come anywhere near to building something that good. But there is hope … and time … and this excellent step-by-step, picture-packed book of Bf-109 builds by some of the world’s best modelers will show you how it’s done.
Getting your hands on, and then perusing and re-perusing this Andy Evans compilation of 14 examples of in-progress documentation of superior Bf-109 builds in multiple scales will greatly boost your chances of that coveted top ten finish at the Nats. Or, if you’re just an average modeler like me, it will improve the overall quality of your builds.
Following a brief history of the types’ development and operational service, this high-quality, color printed, softcover book details the following subjects, kits, and builders:
- Rene Van Der Hart’s build of Eduard’s 1:48 Bf-109G-6 late
- James Bamford’s build of Eduard’s 1:48 Bf-109F-4
- Miguel Silvestre’s build of Eduard’s 1:48 Josef Priller Bf-109E-3
- Peter Cosgrove’s build of Dora Wing’s 1:48 Bf-109A/B
- Mario Serelle’s build of AZ Model’s 1/:2 Bf-109G-6
- Mac Patterson’s build of Revell’s 1:32 Bf-109G-4 Trop
- James Cann’s build of Eduard’s 1:48 Bf-109G-6 early
- James Cann’s build of Eduard’s 1:48 Bf-109G-4 Trop
- Angel Exposito’s build of Tamiya’s 1:48 Bf-109E-3
- Museum photos of Bf-109G-2 Trop Black 6
- Mark Casiglia’s build of Hasegawa’s 1:32 Bf-109G-6
- James Cann’s build of Eduard’s Bf-109G-10
- Sun ick Roh’s build of Hasegawa’s 1:32 Bf-109K-4
- Jay Blakemore’s build of Eduard’s 1:48 Bf-109F-2
- Jay Blakemore’s build of Eduard’s 1:48 Bf-109G-6 converted tJay Bo a Bf-109G-6/U3
While some of the examples are out-of-box builds, most show the incorporation of lots of aftermarket goodies. The text provides step-by step hints and tips from each builder, along with paints used, aftermarket products incorporated into the build, and supporting instructions to achieve the end results in the photos. Either way, persistent studying of the text and photos in this excellent reference will help make you a better modeler of the Messerschmitt Bf-109 by any kit manufacturer, in any scale, whether OOB or loaded to the gills with resin and photo-etch parts!
Highly recommended for modelers interested in WWII German aircraft in any scale and to any level of detailing.
Thanks to IPMS Reviewer Corps and MA Publications, Ltd. for the opportunity to review this publication.