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Dragon's 1/48  „Behelfsnachtjaeger“
Me 262 B-1a/U1

by Ingo Degenhardt


Messerschmitt Me 262 B-1a/U1

  images by Lutz Degenhardt

Dragon's 1/48 scale Messerschmitt Me 262B-1a/U1 is available online from Squadron



As it is already very well covered on the World Wide Web, I will not write much about the history of the Me262 variants – this is my interpretation of the well-known “Rote 10” from 10./NJG 11, shown in a small diorama scene representing a temporary hideout near the Reichsautobahn Hamburg – Lübeck from where this unit operated it’s jet nightfighters during May 1945.



The Me 262 B-1a/U1 originated from the B-1a two-seat trainer and was only meant as an interim solution until the B-2a became available. But only one prototype was finished before the end of the war.




This is the first in a small series of three more or less representative Me 262 models I built for my slowly growing collection of aircraft from the early jet age. The Dragon model has good detail but there are also some fit issues, especially when fitting the wing construction to the fuselage. It contains some nice PE parts for the main wheel well and cockpit.

According to my research “Red 10” did not have the modified armament of two long-barreled guns that the Dragon kit offers, but retained the original Mk108 – having the two upper guns removed. I did my best to find out, but I am still not 100% sure about that.

The rubber wheels did not look very convincing to me, so I replaced them with a weighted wheel set by Aires, which look very fine. I also shortened the main gear legs to give the airplane the right ‘attitude’, but obviously not enough as it still sits too horizontal in my opinion.



For the cockpit I added seat belts for the rear seat and a Tamiya figure for the pilot’s seat. The canopy-holding strings are very fine wire just as the antenna cables.

The Kettenkrad and it’s driver of course are Tamyia. As well as the barrels and jerrycans, that were released for their 1/48 armour series.


Painting and Markings


As usual I used Xtra-color enamels except for the black undersides which are painted in Humbrol gloss black with a few drops of gloss white. The upper camouflage scheme is RAL 76 with the mottling in RAL 75. The dividing line between upper and lower camouflage was masked with blu-tack. A quite well documented feature of this aircraft are the fuel tanks under the fuselage – they seemed either to have suffered some rough treatment or the paint didn’t stick to them too well on the real thing – lots of scratches and chipped paint appear in photographs. I reproduced this and did some further weathering of this kind to the engine nacelles, wing leading edges, etc.



I believe the aircraft had black Balkenkreuze on the upper wings instead of the white ones that Dragon supplies. These and the fuselage crosses I sprayed in flat black using the decals to cut out templates from adhesive foil. As usual in Germany, swastikas are not included in the kit, but I wanted the model to be complete and found me some.





Although it has it’s issues, the Dragon model is a quite straightforward built model, which needs some special attention with the fiddly PE construction in the main wheel well, the wing/fuselage joint and the attachment of the main wheels and legs that do not automatically fit in the right angles which are so typical of the Me 262.


The following literature (besides the www.) was used for the building of this model:

  • Waffenarsenal No. 90, Band 2 “Me262 – Das Vielzweckflugzeug”

  • Me 262 „Stormbird rising“ by Hugh Morgan

  • “Me 262 Sturmvogel “ by Dennis R. Jenkins

The Diorama plate was originally intended for an abandoned 1/72 armour scene and therefore may appear a little small for the Me262 but as I do not plan to build anything much smaller than this used it anyway, because it is too nice to be wasted. It was made by Bodo Degenhardt and adds a touch of family business to the diorama.


Additional Images


Click on the thumbnails below to view larger images:

Model and Text Copyright © 2006 by Ingo Degenhardt
Images Copyright © 2006 by Lutz Degenhardt
Page Created 05 September, 2006
Last Updated 21 February, 2007

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