The BFW Company (latter Messerschmitt A.G.) designed the Messerschmitt Bf 108 Taifun in 1934. The original design was for a light tourist double seater, developed for the German team taking part in the 1934 international air race Challenge. Even though the Challenge wasn't a great success for the Bf 108 as the best German pilot Theo Osterkamp only came in fifth, the RLM still ordered 32 Bf 108s.
The production of the improved version, the Bf 108B, was set-up in November 1935. The B version was redesigned to be a four-seater with a new Argus As 10C engine. The Bf 108B was a very modern light aircraft with an all-metal airframe, retractable undercarriage, adjustable propeller, and with excellent flight characteristics.
The Bf 108 took part in many air races and record flights and the first foreign pilot who tested the Bf 108 was Charles Lindberg. He said that it was one of the world's best aircraft in its class.
The military version of the Taifun was the Bf 108B-2 and was acquired by the Luftwaffe in 1939. It was widely employed during the war years by all operational Luftwaffe units as a light liaison aircraft. In 1941 the new version, the Bf 108D, replaced the B version on the production line. An Argus As 10R engine powered the D version and included the new Argus automatically adjustable propeller and improved fuel assembly. The production was transferred to France in 1942, where 170 Bf 108D were completed before the liberation of France in 1944. French production continued after the war where another 115 aircraft under the name of "Nord 1000" were manufactured.
In total 626 military Taifuns, versions B-2 and D-1, were produced except at least 180 civilian or export version Bf 108 B-0
and B-1. The Luftwaffe employed most of them, but many other air forces used this fine and popular aircraft. The Hungarian
AF had 8 Taifuns, both the Italians and Rumanians had 3, the USSR bought two and Switzerland and Yugoslavia had 12 each.
One aircraft was used in Chile, one or two in Japan and one was in Australia. The Bulgarian AF had 6 and at least one was in Spain. One Bf 108B-1, coded XC44, was operated by the US embassy in Berlin. Two Bf 108B-1s were flown by the German embassy in London but the RAF confiscated these two aircraft in 1939. After the war, one Bf 108B-2 was flown in Czechoslovakia, two in Poland, one in Denmark and one in Sweden. Some 115 Bf 108Ds ( Nord 1000) were used by the
French AF and Navy until the late 50's. Many of the surviving Taifuns were flown a long time after the war, and some of them
are still in airworthy condition today.
Info from Eduard
In the box
Packed in a largish box the Bf 108 is crammed with sprues, all of which are individually bagged.
There are 129 parts spread over 6 grey plastic sprues, with another 9 clear parts. 13 parts are not used.
Moulding is superb as its a fairly new tooling, with the first incarnation tooled in 2018.
Rowan (Merlin) has already reviewed the ProfiPack version here
, but as this is the Weekend edition, this boxing lacks the photo etch sheets and the masks, and only has two decal options.
Now not one to build anything much with a propeller (apart from the odd ship), when Rowan first asked for this kit, I wasn't really that fussed about him bagging one, well that is until I looked in the box of the ProfiPack edition, and was overawed with the quality of the plastic and the size of the Taifun, and immediately regretted letting Rowan have first dips at it. Thankfully Eduard
released this edition so I could get my grubby little mitts on one too.
So onto what's in the box.
First up is the cockpit, and all though there isn't any P.E, the seats still get some belts in the way of decals, for the front and rear seats. The cockpit although lacking in the finer details the ProfiPack version has, it is still nicely detailed. The instrument panel is well moulded with the dials as raised areas, and can either be painted or you can use the supplied decal.
A full engine is supplied for the nose, but it wont actually be seen unless you cut away the cowl panels.
The kit includes two propellers, although the plastic one is shown as not used, but you do get a very nice Brassin wooden fixed-pitch propeller. The Brassin propeller is beautifully produced and looks very easy to remove from the casting block. A resin spinner is also supplied.
This is a very easy piece of resin to work with if its the first introduction of using any type of resin parts, as long as you know to use a super glue and not plastic cement to stick the prop.
The undercarriage bays and legs are fairly well detailed and once built will look pretty decent.
Two different types of wheels are supplied, a spoked set and a plain hub set.
The tyres do have tread moulded onto them and truth be told is a little shallow in depth, and will probably be filled once you prime and paint them.
Exterior detail is superb, with fine engraved panel lines, some very subtle rivet detail and some subtle raised ribs for the control surfaces.
Speaking of which, all the control surfaces are separate so they can be modelled off center.
The clear parts are crystal clear with no visible distortion in them, and have some lovely rivet detail on the frames.
The canopy doors can be modelled open, but this does look tricky to pull off as it isn't really made clear in the instructions on how they are attached.
Instructions, decals and markings
instructions are printed in an A4 size booklet and consists of eight pages including the front and back covers.
The front page shows you the part trees and numbers and the interior painting numbers. Thirteen parts are unused in this edition.
There is no historical dialogue within the instructions or the box so researching will have to be done by other means, be it by book or the Internet, there is plenty of info out there though.
The instructions follow the tried and tested design of black line drawings. The build sequence is over five pages and looks easy enough to follow with any decals to be added and internal colours given along the way.
The last two pages have full colour profiles.
The decals are printed by Eduard
, are thin with very little carrier film and are in register.
Two types of Swastikas are supplied, depending on your preference on using them. The full Swastikas are printed in the corner of the sheet so Eduard
can remove them from countries that have banned the symbols.
Having used Eduard
decals on several occasions I have never once had a problem applying them.
Two marking options are available in this boxing and are as follows -
Germany, September 1939
The German pre-war colours were used to camouflage this Taifun. Upper surfaces are painted RLM 61, RLM, 62 and RLM 63 colours, the undersides are RLM 65. The new camouflage was painted over the original factory colours thus the stencilling is not visible.
WNr. 178, Stab II.(Schl.)/LG 2, Vyerdino airfield, Soviet Union, July 1941.
During July 25th and 26th, 1941 several Hs 123 from II. (Schlacht) Gruppe Lehrgeschwader 2 attempted to land at Vyerdino airfield in Smolensk region. Due to the soft surface caused by a summer storm five Henschels were damaged. It was not the only non-combat loss suffered by this unit. Another aviator who lost control of the airplane in muddy terrain was a pilot of the headquarters’ liaison Bf 108 whose landing resulted in an accident representing 20% aircraft damage. Liaison Taifun was camouflaged in RLM 70 and 71 on the upper and side surfaces with the lower surfaces in RLM 65 sporting a yellow stripe on the fuselage tail indicating the aircraft assigned to Eastern Front. There is a so-called Infanteriesturmabzeichen painted behind the engine cowling, common marking on all aircraft that belonged to the close support air units. The tip of the propeller spinner is probably in the same colour as an individual aircraft letter “L” i.e. red.
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