FuG-200 Hohenwiel Antenna
Brengun Models is a scale model and detailing parts manufacturer located in the Czech Republic. Their lines include limited production run multi-media kits and exquisitely detailed photo-etched, turned brass and white metal replacement parts for aircraft in the most commonly produced scales.
Brengun has produced a set of FuG-200 Antenna to fit any appropriate 1/72 scale Luftwaffe aircraft kit.
The FuG 200 Hohenwiel was a low-UHF band frequency maritime patrol radar system of the Luftwaffe in World War II. It was developed by C. Lorenz AG of Berlin starting in 1938 under the code name "Hohenwiel", an extinct volcano in the region of Baden-Württemberg in southern Germany. The device had originally been entered into a design contest held by the Luftwaffe for the new FuMG 40L (ground-based fire-control radar). When competitor Telefunken won that contract with its "Würzburg radar" in 1939, the device was shelved.
In 1941, Lorenz started to re-design it for another design contest by the Reichsluftfahrtministerium for an airborne naval search radar. As no special antenna had been specified, initially the simplest possible layout with three transversely-arranged antenna arrays was chosen - the central one for transmitting and two others for receiving, one each to port and starboard of the central transmitting array. Each antenna array possessed sixteen horizontally-oriented dipole elements, in eight sets of two elements each, with each set of four dipole groups vertically stacked comprising each array. For rough guidance, the radio operator had to manually switch the receiving arrays. Later, the device received a motor-driven antenna switch. The received signal strength was displayed on a cathode ray tube so the observer or pilot could roughly gauge the target's heading as 'left', 'right' or 'head on'. The maximum range was 150 km for convoys on the Atlantic. The device was first deployed on Junkers Ju 88, Focke-Wulf Fw 200 and other maritime patrol aircraft and twin-engined torpedo bomber designs, and is known to have been fitted to Heinkel He 111 medium bombers for training purposes, and experimented with on the Heinkel He 177A. In order to avoid capture after a crash, it was fitted with several small self-destruct explosive charges in each of the system's electronics cabinets, which could be triggered by the pilot.
Other versions were adapted for use on U-boats and other marine vessels. *
The plastic pouch contains one brass photo-etch fret of the radar components. A simple graphic detail instruction sheet is included, but any modeler familiar with photoetch parts will have no issues assembling and installing these. A close-up evaluation of the parts (see photos) indicates a simple cut, assemble and place installation that provides realistic scale-detail with a significantly improved appearance to molded plastic kit parts (if any are supplied). The Brengun PE antenna have superior detail to those supplied in any typical kit of appropriate aircraft using the type, or perhaps a U-boat or other naval vessel (check your references).
Some cautionary advice: for those without basic modeling experience, use CA (“super-glue”) sparingly, to assemble and/or attach these parts to your plastic kit, as the usual plastic glues do not react with PE parts. Painting of the parts will be necessary, so check your references, and be sure to prime with the appropriate materials that are compatible with your preferred paints.
Overall, this is an excellent replacement set that will lend increased realism to any 1/72 Luftwaffe aircraft using these antennae. These sets can be purchased at the Brengun website above.
Thanks to the IPMS Reviewer Corps and Brengun for the opportunity to review this item.
* FuG-200 descriptive data from Wikipedia