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Blohm und Voss Bv 155

by Bryan "Tuck" Tucker


Blohm und Voss Bv 155

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The Blohm und Voss BV 155 was designed to combat the arrival of Allied high altitude bombers over the continent. Designed with an operational ceiling of 60,000 ft. (18,000m), it could have been a major thorn in the side of the U.S.A.A.F.

Kit Summary
Kit Blohm und Voss BV 155
Scale 1/48
Manufacturer ARBA Resin from England
Cost USD$80 including shipping from Hannants (England)

The Luftwaffe did not possess an adequate fighter to combat the anticipated arrival of the B-29, so the BV 155 design was undertaken. Initially designed by Messerschmitt, the project was taken over by Blohm und Voss when it became apparent Messerschmitt did not have the resources to complete the design. Unfortunately, Blohm und Voss decided to completely re-design the aircraft. This began a well-documented downward spiral of design changes, role refinements, etc. that resulted in a complex, failure-prone aircraft.



The aircraft employed a Heinkel-Hirth supercharger mid-fuselage, and exhaust gasses from the engine were piped along the fuselage. This supercharger arrangement dictated the location of the large under wing radiators, one being for coolant and the other for oil. Two prototypes were completed and flown (one by the British post-war). Both encountered numerous mechanical problems that prevented full testing. The BV 155 V2 now resides at the Paul Garber Restoration Facility awaiting restoration (perhaps someday?).



ARBA's 1/48 Scale Bv 155


ARBA resin kits from England offer conversions and full resin kits.

Their 1/48 scale Bv 155 offering has tan colored resin that is high quality with no air bubbles. The castings are superb. Panel lines are finely recessed and surface details are adequate. The subassemblies are well thought out for ease of construction. Locator tabs are cast into the parts for positive alignment and strength. The propeller blades, landing gear, instrument panel, control stick and gun sight are all white metal and are superbly cast. No decals are provided. Instructions consist of a step-by-step construction process with no exploded views or diagrams (the parts are not numerous and the construction steps fairly obvious). No painting diagrams are provided, so references are a must. I have built 3 of their kits now and they are top notch in ease of construction and quality. They are rather pricey, but I feel you get a quality (and obscure) product for the price.


The parts breakdown is well thought out to simplify construction.

The solid cast fuselage is split into front and rear sections that join via a keyed joint. This joint is conveniently where a panel line is, so no need to erase all hints of a seam. The cockpit is adequately detailed, but super detailers will have plenty of room to add if they so wish. The cockpit insets through the bottom of the fuselage and fits like a glove. The white metal seat, instrument panel and control stick were painted and installed.

The wings are a 5-piece affair, separated into under wing radiators, a solid cast center wing section, and outer wing panels that also have keyed joints. The outer wings require dihedral, so check your references. The outer wings and radiator housings were super glued in place. I painted the interior of the radiators and the radiators themselves at this stage as they would be very hard to reach after attachment to the main wing. I used small sections of plastic coated paper clips to reinforce joints that looked fragile. The completed wing assembly was then attached the keyed joint in the bottom of the fuselage, and reinforced with more plastic coated paper clips.



At this point, the weight of this resin kit becomes apparent. The horizontal stabilizers were added. The joint of the horizontal stabilizers to the vertical stabilizer required a little filler to smooth things out. Again, paper clips were used to strengthen and align these parts. The prop blades were cleaned slightly, then glued to the resin spinner using paper clip wire to strengthen it. The blades were aligned by hand and left to dry. I recommend using brass rod or wire to attach the prop to the fuselage, as the completed prop weighs quite a bit.

The sturdy landing gear was painted and attached to the wings with wire and superglue.

The canopy is vac-u-formed, and was rather opaque. Two are provided, in case of accident with one. I chose to have an open canopy, as the opaqueness of the hood would hide most of the detail.



Painting and Markings


All paints were Model Master Acrylics.

I painted the upper surfaces in RLM 81/82 over RLM 76. I softly mottled RLM 81/82 randomly on the fuselage sides and vertical stabilizer. I masked camouflage pattern using standard masking tape.

The propeller blades were wooden and therefore painted RLM 71 with the spinner RLM 70.

The cockpit was painted RLM 66 with dry brushing of RLM 76 to bring out details. Dials, switches, etc. were painted according to standard Luftwaffe practice. Decals were taken from the spares box and put on over a coat of Model Master Gloss. I decided to do a fictitious operational Bv 155, complete with unit markings and kill marks.



The prominent exhaust gas piping was painted flat black and dry-brushed with RLM 02 to bring out the details. A sharp No. 2 pencil was used to highlight all panel lines. Model Master Flat was sprayed and the kit was finished! I highly recommend the Monogram Close-Up of the Bv 155 (if you can find it) for details, camouflage, etc.





This aircraft is my personal favorite. Who knows how it would have performed had it entered production or combat. One thing is sure, there was nothing else even remotely like it in the sky - the finished kit is a behemoth!

I took my Bv 155 to the 2002 IPMS Nationals in Virginia Beach, not with the intention of taking home a trophy, but to let people see something different than a bunch of P-51s and Me 109s (apologies to P-51 and Me 109 lovers everywhere). However, the 51’s and 109’s conspired against me, and my kit had to be displayed in the “Other Axis” category (but it did look funny surrounded by Japanese aircraft!).

So much for my vision of my huge BV 155 surrounded by 109s!



Additional Images


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Model, Images and Text Copyright © 2003 by Bryan "Tuck" Tucker
Page Created 26 February, 2003
Last Updated 17 March, 2004

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