Pilot & Markings
Hauptmann Heinz-Wolfgang Schnaufer — Kommodore NJG-4, March 1945
Scale & Kit
1/48 Scale ProModeler Model
This German two/four seat aircraft serviced as a long range fighter, a night fighter and an attack/bomber airplane between 1939 and 1945. It was intended to perform as a heavily armed escort fighter to accompany bombers deep into enemy territory. During the Battle of Britain the big fighter proved to be almost as vulnerable to RAF fighters as the bombers it was ordered to protect. As a result, the BF109’s found themselves escorting bombers ‘and’ BF110 fighters. Despite the aircrafts extreme vulnerability to allied P-47’s, P-51’s, Spitfires and Hurricanes, pilots of the Messeschmitt BF110 went on to reach the ace status.
The most successful night fighter and top scoring ‘Nachtjäger’ during this time was Major Heinz-Wolfgang Schnaufer. His greatest one time success came on February 21st, 1945. On that day, he shot down nine RAF four-engine bombers: two in the early hours of the morning and an additional seven within 19 minutes. Post-war research suggests that, in fact, his total that day was 10 victories, with one claim not having been acknowledged. He was credited with 121 victories recorded in 164 combat missions. His victory total includes 114 four-engine bombers.
I used ProModeler’s BF110G-4 scale model airplane kit to produce Schnaufer’s machine. The entire aircraft was airbrushed RLM 76 Light Blue with RLM 75 Gray Violet spots sprayed on the upper wings, fuselage and tail. The result is a nice looking replica of Schnaufer’s BF110G-4.