Jagdwaffe, the series of soft-cover volumes from Classic Publications aims to be the most complete overiew of Luftwaffe camouflage and markings available. Holding The West, 1941-1943 (Vol 4, Pt 1) follows the established format, with large, well printed photos supported by informative captions. What makes these books particularly useful to modellers, is that the publishers have tried to gather as many photos as possible of individual aircraft and accompany many of them with superb colour-artwork.
This volume covers the period from July 1941 through to August 1943. During this time, the Luftwaffe fighter force in France underwent a number of changes, with the arrival of the Fw 190 and the introduction of new camouflage colours. As the RAF and, later, the USAAF began to mount sorties in ever-increasing numbers, the Luftwaffe was forced to adopt a more defensive stance, and their large-scale raids gave way to "tip and run"attacks.
All these aspects are covered in some detail, with an informative text, which includes personal testimonies and details of pilots' careers. In terms of the photos, there's plenty for modellers to relish - the airfield scenes will provide plenty of scope for dioramas and the coverage of Adolf Galland's specially modified Bf 109Fs and the sheer variety of Fw 190 schemes should keep everyone happy for some time.
A question of colour
For many modellers, the high point of these books is the beautiful colour illustrations. The publishers add a cautionary note about the difficulties in interpreting B&W photos, and this particularly true for this volume; the distinction between RLM 02/71 and RLM 74/75 upper-surfaces is surprisingly hard to discern, depending on the type of film used and lighting conditions at the time. The beauty of this series' format is that you can compare the photos with the artwork and draw your own conlusions.
I don't hesitate to recommend this series to modellers and historians alike.
About Rowan Baylis (Merlin) FROM: NO REGIONAL SELECTED, UNITED KINGDOM
I've been modelling for about 40 years, on and off. While I'm happy to build anything, my interests lie primarily in 1/48 scale aircraft. I mostly concentrate on WW2 subjects, although I'm also interested in WW1, Golden Age aviation and the early Jet Age - and have even been known to build the occas...