1/32 Messerschmitt Bf 109E over the Balkan Peninsula from Eduard

Eduard
Kit Number 1156
Available direct from Eduard for $89.95 (around £56.20)

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The Messerschmitt Bf 109 fighter has had so many words written about it that I need not add many more here. One of the many campaigns that it was involved in, and which has been a little neglected in comparison to many other theatres, was the invasion of Greece and Yugoslavia in April1941, prior to the much larger Operation Barbarossa, the invasion of Russia, some 2 months later. The sub-variants mainly used in this campaign were the Bf 109E-4 (which had seen much service in the Battle of Britain) and the later Bf 109E-7.

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Last year Eduard launched a series of well-received, accurate and well priced Bf 109E models in 1/32 scale. Various subsequent releases have covered most of the E variants, including tropical aircraft. Indeed, we reviewed a weekend edition of the Bf 109E-4 on the site earlier this year. This review contains photos of all of the normal kit contents. Overall, the range have been found to be accurate (once an amended canopy for later variants was incorporated) and the kits build up well with a little care. The major drawback found is that the engine cannot be incorporated if the engine cowlings are to be fixed in position; it does not sound like a major issue, but it means that there is nothing behind the various cowling openings once the cowlings are in place, which has irritated some other reviewers (and one or two modelling friends of mine).

The latest Eduard Bf 109E is a limited edition release covering aircraft from the Invasion of Yugoslavia and Greece. Entitled "Over the Balkan Peninsula", it contains the standard Bf 109E-4 ProfiPACK kit, complete with Eduard MASK and 2 etched frets, with a BRASSIN wheel set and new decals and instruction sheet.

Taking, the standard kit parts first; the sprues have been commented on in the previous article. The first sprue holds the wings (below).

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A close-up shot (below) shows the high moulding quality as normally presented by Eduard.

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Further sprues hold the fuselage, cowlings and drop tank (above); undercarriage, exhausts, radiators, spinner, propellor and control surfaces (below);

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engine and cockpit (above); and the clear transparencies, shown with the Eduard MASK provided (below).

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There are also 2 etched frets provided (above), one of which is coloured. I believe the small control board on the coloured fret is incorrectly coloured for a Bf 109 at this time; it is portrayed in RLM66, whereas it should probably be in RLM02, so will need repainting.

Now focussing on the changes to the standard kit, first we have the Brassin wheel set, also previously reviewed when it was released last year (below). This is a high quality item, with excellent hub detail and good tyre pattern that enhances the already excellent kit; my only comment is that there is no indication which of the alternative wheel hubs is correct for each of the 5 aircraft portrayed in the decal sheet.

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There are 2 decal sheets within the kit. The first (above) contains the major markings and insignia for the five new aircraft options in the kit. This is well presented, in perfect register and with good colour density. I am not convinced by the colour used in the "Lion" emblem of II./JG 27, I think this should be lighter and more yellow in tone. Apart from this, everything is excellent.

The second sheet (below) is a standard stencilling sheet presented in previous releases in the range. Again, register is perfect.

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The 16 instruction booklet follows Eduard's usual format. The only omission is on p.11, where, as with the wheel hubs, no indication which aircraft can be fitted with the drop tank is given. This can only be on Bf 109E-7 aircraft, so applies to decal option B and possibly E. The actual decal options are:

  • Bf 109E-4, Hauptman Max Dobislav, CO of III./JG 27, Bellica airfield, Yugoslavia, April 1941
  • Bf 109E-7, III./JG 77, Belgrad-Semlin airfield, Yugoslavia, May 1941 (both above)
  • Bf 109E-4, III./JG 77, Greece or Rumania, May 1941
  • Bf 109E-4, W.Nr. 4148, Hauptman Wolfgang Lippert, CO of II./JG 27, Larissa airfield, Greece, April 1941 (both below)

 

 

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  • Bf 109E-4/7, III./JG 77, Balkans, April 1941 (above)

Of these, option B would have to be my personal choice, with its "squiggled" fuselage and non-standard yellow theatre markings.

So, overall, this is a really good limited edition. The price is about right if you add the cost of a ProfiPACK kit to the BRASSIN wheels, but that does push the cost of the kit close to $90.00, over £55.00, which may be a little rich for some modellers.

So What Do We Think?

I really like this offering from Eduard; the schemes are rarely featured on models and all are attractive. A really good, thorough overall package, but it does cost more than twice the price of the Weekend Edition Bf 109E-4, which may put off some buyers.

A good addition to Eduard's 1/32 Bf 109E stable

Our thanks to Eduard for the review sample. To purchase directly, click THIS link.

Robin Jenkins.

 

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